Another NaNo is over. Every year I think to myself that I’m not going to do it, and every year I end up making at least the attempt. The last couple of years have been less formal, and I haven’t interacted with anyone in my local rea with the event. I simply quietly plug along with my own progress, unconcerned about anyone else.
I guess this is because, at least in my mind, it’s changed. It’s no longer a community event to see if I can do it. I already know I can do it. It’s a question of whether or not I will do it. And I don’t need the cheerleading aspect of NaNo in order to write. I don’t need word drills and hanging out in coffee shops with a crowd of people that are, at best, only semi-serious about writing.
In a highly informal poll of writer friends, most of them end up moving away from Nano as well. Oh, they still write. In fact they outpace NaNo writers. The last four years I’ve done NaNo I’ve haven’t felt any real pressure that I was behind and couldn’t get it done. Even with attending Crime Bake, which eats up a good three days of writing I could still get it done without difficulty. Yes, some of it was down to the wire, but it still got done.
But it is interesting to see the more serious, and especially the professionally paid, writers move away from NaNo.