Camp NaNoWriMo is just around the corner, and if you’re anything like me, you’re staring blankly at your computer screen and wondering how on earth you’ll scrape together the time (let alone the CREATIVE ENERGY) to participate.
I feel you, friends.
School is a monster.
No, skip that – LIFE is a monster. A monster that will eat you whole if given the chance. And, let’s face it: Camp Nano isn’t worth getting eaten over. (At least, not to me. You professional writing psychos might feel differently. I don’t know.)
But at the same time, the Camp Nano months have become an incredibly important staple of my writing life. (Read: The only time I ever get anything done.) Sure, they’re not the real NaNoWriMo (which, by definition, is a 30-day period where writers are robbed of sanity and willfully try to kill themselves), and for some people, that’s reason to skip it.
For me, that’s the reason to embrace it.
Behold: My thesis.
#1. no one dies
I mean, it’s true…
#2. all the ambition, none of the stress
Unlike the official NaNoWriMo in November, where you’re required to write 50,000 words or else face the doom of your own shame and other’s judgement, Camp Nano is self-paced — in other words, YOU make a goal, and YOU decide if you want to keep it or not.
Only have three days left and a monstrous amount of words yet to be written?
You can change your goal. Those 35,000 words can become 30,000. Or 20,000. Or 15,000.
AND NO ONE IS ALLOWED TO JUDGE YOU.
#3. a slap in the face of the Life Ogre
Look, I get it. School is tough and life has no mercy. These last few months, I’ve been juggling online college courses, art commissions, blogging, familiarizing myself with a new town and church, collaborations, deadlines, job applications, blizzards, baking, and more. Lots of lovely creative things, and yet, in the midst of them all, I’m either 1.) too busy, 2.) too tired, or 3.) too distracted to work on my book.
And sure, April is no exception. The world doesn’t stop just because we want to write more. But at the same time, Camp Nano forces us to make time for our writing amidst the craziness, to hold our stories tighter and say, “No. This is important, too.”
Eh, yeah, who needs that…
Certainly not me, who would rather lay in the middle of the floor and whine instead of doing something useful.
#5. cabins, accountability, and camaraderie
Ah yes, Camp Nano cabins. Little internet spaces where writers hunch over their keyboard and bemoan their writing woes together. It’s like a writing forum, only smaller — a tightly-knit personal cheerleading squad, complete with banter, encouragement, motivation, accountability, and — you guessed it — more banter.
Which leads me to an announcement. (Hopefully a nice one, but hey, I’ll let you decide.) In my latest newsletter, I asked how many of you would be interested in a Sarcastic Elf cabin. Well, the responses are in, and the general consensus?
Guys, I started a cabin.
I know it’s still relatively early to be making plans for Camp Nano, but hey, if you’re planning to participate, come write with me. It’ll be fun. There will be lots of snark and explosions in my cabin.
Everyone needs snark and explosions, right?
Sign-up form for the Sarcastic Scriptorium is below. (I considered naming it “Sarah’s Sarcastic Slaves,” but figured that might be pushing things…) Don’t be shy, people! If you follow my blog, you’re more than welcome to join in.
***Cabin sign-up is now closed.***
Yes, I’m done self-advertising. You can go now, if you want. The important part is over.
So tell me, folks! Who’s doing Camp Nano? Am I the only one thinking about it this early? Are you excited? Terrified? Exhausted? World-weary? Thinking about cheese?
Talk to me, people.