Nearly every time I see the term NaNoWriMo, I have a flashback of Robin Williams in the 1970s-80s TV show, Mork and Mindy.  Nanu-Nanu. 

November’s IWSG question:

November is National Novel Writing Month. Have you ever participated? If not, why not? 

It’s the first Wednesday of the month, which means it is the posting day for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group!
Visit to learn more about IWSG and sign up!

It is sort of fitting in its own way.  You see, Robin Williams was an intellectual comedic genius. If you ever watched him in the show, you could see just how fast his brain worked.  Often, you could see as others in the show were talking, Mork on the side biting his lip, literally chomping at the bit, to deliver another line.

To win in NaNoWriMo, you need to be chomping at the bit to write your next line.

NaNoWriMo reminds me of Genius of Robin Williams as Mork from Mork and Mindy.

National November Writing Month,
or NaNoWriMo for those in the know

NaNoWriMo, the National November Writing Month event is about prompting writers to get their words written.  To be considered a winner, the writer needs to write 50,000 words within the month of November.  It can be a complete story or even the first part of a much longer effort.  Unlike Robin though, there is nothing holding back the writer from delivering another line. 

Over time, I have often run across NaNoWriMo inferences and references and even watched a youtube video of a writer discussing how they prepare for the NaNoWriMo event.  I have been aware of the event for some time.  

More than once, I’ve considered joining the event

I get very excited about it, but then the logical brain kicks in and I realize there isn’t a chance in hell that I would actually focus the time needed.  Roughly 1,700 words each and every day.  Even if I could have the discipline to sit and write 3,000 words a day, I know that I would let my regular world get in the way with urgent, yet unimportant tasks.  I have enough self-awareness to know I should not set myself up for failure. But it is nice to dream and bask in the thought for a few minutes.

If I recall correctly, in one iteration of the event, there were almost 500,000 registrations with a reported ‘winner’ pool of over 40,000 submissions. The winners don’t actually get anything from the event other than bragging writes and a badge to post on their blog or website.  Obviously, the real win is the 50,000-plus word head start on a manuscript.  And that, in and of itself, is a huge windfall.

With my goal at some point to just write for some meager earnings, I don’t actually ever see myself participating in the event.  If I get to the point where I feel that I could actually focus that much time on writing, I doubt that I would wait for November to start.  The stars would need to align just right.

This month, I have the honor of being able to co-host the blog hop with some very fine writers, please make a point of visiting their blogs in support as well.

Diedre Knight, Diane Burton and Nick Wilford

Note: I’m not really sure what the rules are, but apparently being a co-host doesn’t get you invited to the IWSG Super Secret Meeting Place I mentioned in my genres article. Damn!

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Nancy Gideon
1 year ago

LOL! I want to be in that super secret group! I’m with you on NaNo. I’d be too intimidated by the press to produce to actually produce. But during the month, I DO write and I make it a point to write/edit every day in November. So, for me that’s a win. Thanks for co-hosting this month!!

Alex J. Cavanaugh
1 year ago

I’m a very slow writer so it was a challenge for me but somehow I did it.
Thanks for co-hosting today!

Loni Townsend
1 year ago

I, too, know myself well enough to know I couldn’t do it this year. I have in the past, and honestly, I typically have no problem running off into the weeds to achieve word count. But my goals are different this year, and I know if I started with NaNo, I’d end up with a mess.

Thanks for co-hosting!

L. Diane Wolfe
1 year ago

I know I just don’t have time to devote a whole month to just my writing.

1 year ago

Oh I loved Mork & Mindy too. Robin Williams was such a comedic genius, and a genuinely kind man too from what is said about him.
I’ve moved from recoiling in horror at the mere thought of NaNo to thinking that I’d like to… one day, if not quite yet. Progress of sorts.
Thanks for co-hosting 🙂
@DebsDespatches posting today from Fiction Can Be Fun

Last edited 1 year ago by Webmaster Douglas Greening
J. Q. Rose
1 year ago

Hey, yes! Shades of Mork whenever I see or say Nano too! He was brilliant! Never will be another Robin Williams. Nano is not for everyone, for sure.

1 year ago

Thanks for co-hosting this month! I did NaNo officially one year, but like you I let real life get in the way of my writing and I did not win. It was good to kick start a project though. I’m much better at writing a little each morning when the inspiration hits.

Victoria Marie Lees
1 year ago

Thank you for co-hosting this month, Douglas! I love Robin Williams. I watched Mork from Ork and some of his other movies. A great loss when he passed.
I don’t participate in NaNo. I’ve got too much pressure to write already. I’m a slow writer who always thinks first before I write. Have a beautiful day!

Charity Bradford
1 year ago

I’ve “won” Nano several times, but I count the years I “lost” as wins as well. Sometimes I’m simply using the excitement to finish a novel (which is technically against the rules). The way I look at it is any words written is a bonus. And I haven’t really joined the online throngs of people in years. I buy a bag of 50% off Halloween candy and enjoy the peace and quiet of my own writing cave. Nano has become the code word in November to remind my family to let me have writing time. 🙂

1 year ago

Hi Douglas!
Such fun memories you revive with mentions of Mork & Mindy – and the genius of Robin Williams.
“Chomping at the bit to write your next line.” is a great analogy.
Thank you for co-hosting!

C. Lee McKenzie
1 year ago

It’s all about time, isn’t it? I’m in the same camp as you are when it comes to NANO! I’d be out of my mind to sign up for it. Great to meet you here on the IWSG First Wednesday!

Melissa Maygrove
1 year ago

Nano Nano. That was a blast from the past. LOL
Thanks for co-hosting!

Tyrean Martinson
1 year ago

I enjoy NaNoWriMo when I allow myself to up my word count with the freedom of moving from project to project, and I’m happy to meet my goals without any other reward other than seeing the little graph go upward. 🙂
But I understand it’s not for every writer. We each have our own goals, our own pace, and our own strengths. May your writing bless your days and bring you joy!

Arlee Bird
1 year ago

I did Nano in 2010 & 2011 and I doubt whether I’d do it again. The event did help me to focus and mostly write 2 novels that I never finished and polished. However I did print out my Nano award from 2010, frame it, and hang it on my writing office wall where it remains to this day.
Arlee Bird Tossing It Out

Last edited 1 year ago by Webmaster Douglas Greening
Samantha Bryant
1 year ago

NaNoWriMo isn’t for everyone, but it can be a great kick in the pants when you need one! @samanthabwriter from Balancing Act

Last edited 1 year ago by Webmaster Douglas Greening
PJ Colando
1 year ago

Oooh, Mork and Mindy! What a terrific show that was and your sense of it is spot-on. Robin Williams had a warp-speed comedic mind.
NaNoWriMo is not the best vehicle for me. I don’t require impetus to write and I don’t respond well to pressure. I NaNoSkipIt! I’m one of the fortunate whose creativity shows up daily and I follow that muse anywhere she wants to go.

Natalie Aguirre
1 year ago

Thanks for co-hosting. I couldn’t keep up with the daily word count either. I’m a very slow writer.

Miffie Seideman
1 year ago

Nanu-Nanu! Such fond memories of watching that show and all of Robin Williams’ talents as a comedian and actor. Sorry about missing out on the super secret meeting place, but I do appreciate that you co-hosted the blog hop this month! Now…back to mother ship…

Myrtle L Barbour
Myrtle L Barbour
1 year ago

Thanks for co-hosting today, Douglas! I think you’re one of the newer blog members, and co-hosting is one way to get more involved with the IWSG. Great post ~ wonderfully written! I get discouraged at my memoir’s progress sometimes, but I remind myself that blogging is a genre too, as are other forms of writing that I do. I’ve never been invited to that super secret meeting you referenced, but whomever is in that group would likely say it comes with a lot of work ~ lol. I hope that you have had a fun day.

Jennifer Lane
1 year ago

Thank you for co-hosting, Douglas! Love the Mork flashback–what a fun show. Maybe we’ll both be NaNo-NaNu winners one day!

1 year ago

Oh! Mork and Mindy! That’s a blast from my favorite past! I laughed at the super secret group comment, too. I especially appreciated this: “If I get to the point where I feel that I could actually focus that much time on writing, I doubt that I would wait for November to start. The stars would need to align just right.I give all the credit in the world to people who use NaNo to jump start a project. I doubt I will ever be one of them! Thank you for being a IWSG Co-host!

Elizabeth Seckman
1 year ago

I loved Mork and Mindy. I love the humor of Robin Williams. Losing him was heartbreaking.
I also don’t even attempt the word sprint. No sense setting myself up to fail.

Jemima Pett
1 year ago

I’ve found it useful to do Camp Nano – in April or July – months when I can dedicate the time to writing – and it’s usually when I’ve got something I work on but need to shut myself away to do it. It does help if you work better to a deadline, but if not, then don’t do it!

Sandra Cox
1 year ago

Thanks for co-hosting. I’d be hard pressed to get 50K in a month. If I manage 30K I’m extremely happy:)

Shannon Lawrence
1 year ago

The comparison to Williams works on many levels. The frenetic energy he brought is exactly what I like to use during NaNo, despite not doing NaNo myself.

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