The NaNoWriMo Kick-off Meet in Mumbai: Loads of fun and tons of information
The first ever NaNoWriMo event in Mumbai (and India) was the Kick-off meet held on Sunday 30th October, 2011 at Costa Coffee, Juhu.
With an eclectic crowd consisting of writers from Bhayander to Matunga, this meet, which began at 3pm, was suffused with enormous enthusiasm for completing the requisite 50K words of a novel in the month of November. The meet began with introductions and as each one spoke about their ideas and concepts of their novels, their individual and collective concerns were also addressed satisfactorily.
Most of the participants in the meet were attempting NaNoWriMo for the very first time and the exuberance tinged with apprehension was very apparent, but by the time the meet ended at 5pm, all the participants were convinced that they were now well-equipped with information to enable them to win the competition.
It was also very motivating for the excited novelists-in-waiting to know that two nano novels have been recent No.1 bestsellers: ‘Water for Elephants’ by Sara Gruen (also made into a movie) and ‘The Night Circus’ by Erin Morgenstern.
Some of the common concerns voiced by the participants and their solutions are given below:
Q) Do I have to write my story online and do I have to leave my story online for everyone to read?
A) Absolutely not. Each one will have to write their story on their own device, whether it is a PC, laptop, smartphone (you need really nimble fingers, here) or even a book. You can post the synopsis and an excerpt of your book if you so wish but it is not mandatory.
Q) How can I possibly write 50K words in 30 days?
A) Wouldn’t it be lovely if all other life things were taken care of while we wrote our novels? It would be a good idea to make a schedule with time marked out for writing. If time doesn’t permit you to write at a stretch, write in snatches of 15minutes in between all your other chores and responsibilities.
Q) A blank page is very intimidating. What is the best way to start a novel?
A) To prevent ‘Writer’s Block’ on espying a blank page, start not with the first but the second chapter. You can come back to it later. If this doesn’t sound right, you could actually start writing about how stuck you are and get into the flow. It is inevitable that the right words will emerge. Another way is to never end your day’s writing at the end of a scene. Leave a little bit of it for the next time so that you don’t have a blank mind facing a blank page the next time you sit down to write.
What measures are you taking to ensure you complete your novel?
(This post by Sonia Rao, NaNo ML for India, was first posted immediately after the First ever NaNoWriMo Kick-off meet held in Mumbai).