Why waste your time and energy?
One month, one story, 50,000 words.
The thing is, on December first you’re not magically a better writer, you’re a writer who just wrote 50,000 words. That’s it.
Writing faster does not mean writing better, in fact I would argue the opposite. You spend a month so focused on a numbered goal that you’re just trying to get the sentences out, not make them the best they can be.
But revision comes after, right? Well, you could have wrote at a normal pace and edited as you went, crafting each sentence, each paragraph with love for the language. You have to revise so much afterward that it’s a waste of time to get the 50,000 out just to only keep 1,000 of them. And that’s only a maybe.
With nanowrimo you’re not paying attention – with writing you need to pay attention. You need to know what each sentence conveys.
The alternative: Focus on one part of writing you really want to be better at. For me, that’s dialogue. Instead of blindly crafting a novel, take the month to work on one aspect of writing. Dialogue, character, scene. Whatever.
Like I said before, doing nanowrimo doesn’t make you a better writer. It more than likely stunts your growth as a writer, because once you have those 50,000 words down, it’s hard to go through them with a truly critical eye. Because you finally finished it. Taking your time, practicing one thing at a time will strengthen your writing, which should be every writers goal.
If you’re doing the challenge just because you believe it’ll get you writing, then I’d ask, what are you going to do when it’s over?
So skip nanowrimo, because it’s not for the writer who wants to grow in skill, it’s for the writer who just wants to say they wrote 50,000 words in a month.