• Kamy Wicoff
  • SheWriMo: Join the She Writes November Writing Challenge!
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SheWriMo: Join the She Writes November Writing Challenge!
Written by
Kamy Wicoff
November 2011
Written by
Kamy Wicoff
November 2011

Well today is the day -- November 1st.  What does that mean?  For those of you participating in NaNoWriMo 2011, you know exactly what that means.  It is time to get cracking on your attempt at writing a whole novel in just one month!  I love NaNoWriMo (She Writer GRETCHEN RUBIN was the first to tell me about it, years ago, and I'm pretty sure her experience made it into The Happiness Project) mostly because of the energy, optimism and support it generates for writers.  I do feel, however, that NaNo is not for everyone, and that what's best about it is not the notion that you will write a whole novel in a month (a draft, perhaps?), but the structure and goal-setting it encourages.

TAYARI JONES, in fact, expressed my feelings about NaNo beautifully last year in one of her Countdown To Publication posts for Silver Sparrow:

I like the idea of the month of November being devoted to novel writing. I love thinking of thousands of people sitting at their computers and notebooks thinking hard. What worries me is the idea that a novel should be finished at the end of that month. Let us devote November to novel writing, but let us focus more on trying to structure the month in such a way to be nurturing to our artist-selves. Maybe you will spend the month just daydreaming. Or someone else will hire a babysitter one afternoon a week to get some quiet time. Someone else will spend the month reading novels in translation. Yet another person may volunteer her month to reading friends' drafts. You get the idea. There is more to writing than just word count. Spend November being a more dedicated artist, whatever that looks like.

But while I love Tayari's idea of nurturing my artist-self in a variety of ways, I have to admit that for me, devoting November to writing every day seems like the best possible way to do it.  So this month, I plan to push myself hard to make progress on the novel I'm working on.  I certainly won't feel like I've failed if the whole book isn't done on November 30th, but I will feel like I've let myself down if I don't meet my personal goal of writing at least 1000 words (or more!) every day of the week.  

With this in mind, I'd like to invite ALL She Writers, whether you are doing NaNoWriMo or writing fiction, nonfiction, blogposts, plays, screenplays, or poetry -- or even if you are working hard on your dissertation, like one academic I met yesterday -- to join me in what I'm calling SheWriMo, or the She Writes November Writing Challenge.

Every day, I will log on and share my writing goals for the day.  At the end of the day, I will log back on and report on how I did.  It's that simple.  But when it comes to something as hard as writing, simple is good.

I hope you will join me today!

Let's be friends

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  • Peggy Bird

    Got it done today. The problem with my second novel has been solved--at least it feels solved. And I got 2000 words of the new novel written. Goal for tomorrow is 2000 plus some work on the PSAs I have to have in draft by early next week. Funny how feeling accountable to a network of others working hard makes working hard easier!

  • Robin Hawke

    Goals met.   Second day of 3,000. Feeling fried. Tried to write a short short this afternoon. It suffered from a lack of ability to analyze and edit. Too hard to shift from not censoring to its opposite. Posted on blog anyway.


  • Debbie Pokornik

    Things went better today. Got both my email blast (& a poster) and my blog done. Blog is still rough, but at least it's done. Not quite in the 2-3000 word count, but it feels good just the same.

  • Grace Elting Castle

    Magazine article query completed.  Today's challenge is to add 1000 words to my memoir project.

  • Patricia Woodside

    2000+ words per day.  As many days as I can.  Hopefully I'll have a couple of marathon days wherein I can get 3k or better toward the overall 50k goal.

  • Martha Rodriguez

    Met yesterday's goal to read and start writing initial notes for a picture book review I'm writing for my blog.  Was also able to get my short story on the right path.  Today I plan to jot down some notes on another short story that woke me up in the middle of the night (thanks a lot) and start this week's blog post... if I can decide what that will be!

  • Jane Hammons

    I'm shooting for 1000. Nanowrimo started without me yesterday because I just couldn't get to it after work. But I've got the goal for today and am excited about starting a new novel. Or a new something--whatever it turns out to be.

  • Peggy Bird

    Woke up this morning with the solution to a problem in my other novel clear in my mind so will be working on that today. Then hope to get 1500 words of new novel written.

  • Lisa Rivero

    Yesterday I nearly finished my non-fiction book proposal (working title POTENTIAL: Living Up to Who You Are), and today I want to add the final section and send it to at least three agents. This morning is my monthly get-together with my writing support buddy. Perfect timing!

  • Kamy Wicoff Brainstorming

    Wow @Carla, 3000 words, good for you!  I am going to try for 2000 today...

  • Carla Parsons

    Day one - 2009 words of 3000 word goal.

    Day two - make my 3000 word goal & then some.

  • Debbie Pokornik

    My goal today is to complete the email blast I didn't manage to finish yesterday and create a guest blog for Grandma's.

  • Torill Bye Wilhelmsen

    And...finished! Thank you for making me work on it.

  • Torill Bye Wilhelmsen

    Goal today: Finish "chapter 2". And come up with a working title for my project (it is too ambitious to call it a novel, I have no idea what the text I am writing on will end up as but I am writing it anyway...)

  • Jan Fischer Wade

    Ahhhh, looks familiar Judith!! : )

  • Judith van Praag

    After dropping Sweet Potato Pie off downtown I decided I wouldn't let not participating in a proper NaNoWriMo this year keep me from using that particular group spirit to reach my end of the year goal.
    On my way home I came up with the # NaNoWIP'EM - National Novel Work in Process Editing Month. I told myself and anybody who wanted to know: If I've got to go Off Line, be Anti -Social® and choose Freedom® I will. Yes to #WIP'EM!

    Kamy, your note found me still struggling with the notion of going it alone, without last year's Word Warriors, knowing I'd miss the notes from fellow writers embarking on a similar adventure. So therefore I'm double pleased to add my intentions to your blog post prompt #SheWriMo.

    So here I am. Ready for some NaNoWIPping into shape good enough for sharing with editor and agent.

  • Jan Fischer Wade

    Wow Robin! Great job! Keep it up! I got 1200 done with a goal of 1600, yuck! Although, there are still 5 hours or so left!

  • Robin Hawke

    I made my goal today, 3115 words written (3,000 goal)!  And I blogged. 2 Posts. Feeling worn out. Hope I recuperate by tomorrow morning.

  • Suanne Schafer

    I'm in, too.  Just got off my day job as physician.  Raring to start writing.  Goal is 1500 words daily.

  • Grace Elting Castle

    I'm in! My goal today is to get a long considered, but never written, query letter written.


  • Karen Sosnoski

    My friend and I had the goal of meeting at Dunkin Donuts at 5:00 AM and writing on our novels for one hour. (My goal was to write 1 page without proofreading.) We went to the wrong D & D, one that wasn't open at 5, but soon found the 24 hour one and wrote for a half hour. I finished my one page later in the day at home. We're meeting at 5 AM on Th. as well--this creates a sense of urgency, our own personal bootcamp, also it's great to get in that world first thing in the morning, before the real world takes hold. Love reading the other goals!

  • Peggy Bird

    My 500 words today turned into over 800. So I'm upping my goal for the week to 1500 words a day by Friday.

  • Martha Rodriguez

    Okay, I'm in, too.  Wait!  What am I thinking?  When will I have time to comment here everyday?  I guess I just won't cook.  Yup, that sounds good to me!  Today my goal is to read a picturebook I'm reviewing and write some initial notes.  I also want to go back to the short story I started and see if I can get that finished... or at least on the right path.

  • Elizabeth Anne Mitchell

    Add me to the list.  I'm not doing NaNo--this tortoise will never be a hare, but yes, I write each and every day (especially when I have to tell someone that I have done so).  I wrote for one and a half-hours today ( I don't do word counts--too much "are we there yet?"). That's a good three pages.

  • LuAnn Braley

    Count me in...is there a button? :O)I signed up first for NaNoWriMo 4 years ago (according to my profile over there), but this is the first year I'm actually participating. Ditto NaBloPoMo, but as I am posting every day about NaNoWriMo (and now SheWriMo) that one will kind of just happen.