When I was a student back in the 80’s, Hamilton College had something called the “Jan Plan.” It was part a fairly unique structured academic year in which we took one course only during the month of January. The month was an opportunity to study something in depth, or to take a course you would not otherwise take. One year, I enrolled in “Survey of Economics.” I was never going to be an Econ major, but I enjoyed learning about the discipline in between cross country ski outings during the snowy days of January.
For reasons unknown, Hamilton did away with the innovative 4-1-4 curriculum. That’s too bad, because I’ve been thinking about it fondly this month, while I’m enmeshed in my own November JanPlan — NaNoWriMo.
For those of you who didn’t catch my first post this month, NaNoWriMo is a national effort to get anyone writing during the month of November – and not just writing, but furiously completing a 50,000 word novel. The movement has grown over the years, from just 21 people in July 1999 to 341,375 last year.
Vicki Doudera here, happy to say that I am 36,101 words into my November novel. I’m writing at least 2000 words per day, which isn’t onerous but requires a little discipline, and I plan to be over the 50,000 word goal before I sit down to eat Turkey on the 28th.
Although I am a published author, I’m enjoying the experience of NaNoWriMo and will probably do it again in the future. To be mildly obsessed with something is kind of fun – at least for a month – and I am liking the challenge. My practical side, however, says it’s only going to have been worth doing if my novel – a holiday themed light romance – ends up seeing the light of day.
Down the line I’ll write a Part 3 to this series and tell you what happens with my book. In the meantime, I’m producing the pages and enjoying the process.