For the past two years, I have been joining in the fun of National Novel Writing Month, a “fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.” (Accompanying comic by Debbie Ridpath Ohi at Inkygirl).

Both times I took the challenge, I completed just over 50,000 words under the wire. This year, I won’t make it. But I’m not overly upset and here’s why.

I’m trying a different process. Whereas in past years, I used NaNoWriMo as the opportunity to brainstorm new story ideas, this time I’m working from a very detailed outline. As a result, the writing is going more slowly but the resulting scenes are much more mature. So even though my progress meter looks pathetic, I’m not giving up, just revising my end goal to 25K. Once it’s all over I’ll look back at what I’ve achieved and decide whether this new process worked out or not.

In the meantime, I’m continuing to plug away. My only real problem is that the kids have inventoried the Halloween chocolate, so they will know if I sneak some!

Is anyone else here doing NaNoWriMo? How is it going? Have you ever participated in similar group challenges (writing or otherwise) and how did they go?