Okay, I know it’s still a little too cold to be camping outside. But this is camping you can do at your computer. I’m talking about Camp NaNoWriMo.
I know you’ve heard about National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) in November. Camp NaNoWriMo is the same premise, but a little different vibe. It’s like the younger sibling of NaNo. Camp NaNo takes place twice a year, in April and July, during a less stressful time of year. No major holidays to worry about or Christmas shopping to stress over, and little Sally doesn’t eat the cat’s food for lunch. I personally like Camps better than NaNoWriMo in November. I don’t feel as if I’m in a cave the entire month of writing, and it’s less stressful than NaNoWriMo.
In NaNoWriMo you have writing buddies, whereas in Camp NaNo you’re put into “cabins” with other writers, up to twenty in each cabin. If you have a group of friends you’d like to “bunk” with, you can create and name your cabin with those friends, or you can find a cabin to be a part of. Either way works. The fun part is encouraging each other, making jokes about your cabin (Okay, who left the smelly sock on the floor? Do we have stuff for the S’mores?”), and tracking your progress as well as each other’s.
Camp NaNo allows you to choose your goal by selecting either a word, page, line, minute, or hour count (anywhere from 30 to 1,000,000 words). You keep track online the same way as you would during NaNoWriMo, by inputting your words each night. Don’t feel like you’re going to make your goal? You can adjust your goal by editing your profile. If you have to change your goal, it’s okay. Life happens and the main thing is you’ve started writing, so that’s a major win!
If you like a more local feel, there are several places which host writing nights, where you can interact with other Wrimos in the area after being in your cabin all day. You can find them on the website by looking for your city. Municipal Liaisons will keep you informed on the whens and wheres, too. Writing sprint prompts, helpful hints, and more will be sent to your inbox once a day.
You’ll probably want some of the same survival items you had for November’s marathon. Tea or coffee, snacks, music if that’s your writing thang, and a notice to family and friends to only bother you if the house in on fire.
If you’re looking for a retreat to do some writing this year and you don’t want to spend a lot of money renting a cabin in the middle of the woods, Camp NaNoWriMo is the place to be, and you don’t have to pack the sunblock and insect repellant to participate. Happy camping!
Note from editor: Although Camp NaNo is a non-PPW event it is a perfect opportunity to write your novel just in time for #PPWC2019’s Query 1 on 1.