2023 Fantasy Quest, & Other Updates

We’re just hours away from The Main Event. Seems like just yesterday, although it was August, that Kess and I met to plan November’s activities. And now, here we are. And right on cue, the National Weather Service is predicting that we’ll wrap up October with more than an inch of snow in the Grand Rapids area. What could be better? Curl up with your laptop, a hot beverage, perhaps a lap cat (or lap chicken?), and get your wordcount in. 🙂

Need a quick, printed summary of everything? Download our 2023 Flyer for the basics. And while you’re at it, review our Code of Conduct to make sure everyone’s on the same page.

Kickoff Party

Our 2023 kickoff party proved to be a smashing success. A total of 26 wrimos joined us this past Saturday at the Allendale Township Library to chat, get their goodie bags, and enjoy snacks. We welcomed quite a few new faces to the adventure, too. It warmed the cold, shriveled cockles of my heart to see so much enthusiasm this year. May it persist!

ML Kessalia holds Rippy while talking to attendees.

If you wanted this year’s goodie bag but didn’t have the chance to attend the party, we’ll send you one. Just supply your mailing address in the regional survey. The survey will only be open through Nov. 4, so act fast!

2023 Fantasy Quest

The big news at kickoff was Ye Olde Big Reveal of Fantasy Quest.

Fantasy Quest is our region’s friendly internal competition. Remember raptors? They don’t exist anymore, alas. But people love to gamify their participation, so this is your chance.

Here’s how it works:

  • Fantasy Quest is all about being consistent with your writing while also connecting with fellow writers within the community. Earn up to 10 points for “preparing to write,” up to 30 points for being at or above par for the day with your word counts, up to 20 points for engaging with the local community in some way, 20 points for winning (whatever your goal is), and up to 20 points for going above-and-beyond with book prep or helping the region. Plus, the MLs can award bonus points at will for people who make a substantial contribution to the region.
  • Check out the Fantasy Quest Points Overview for detailed information about how you can earn points.
  • Starting Nov. 1 and running through the morning of December 1, you can update your points with us using a new, five-question survey. Visit the Survey page in November to access the link. You can update as often as you like — either by adding to, or replacing, your point totals — and the MLs will update the leaderboard every third day. Check out #leaderboard on the Discord for updates.
  • Top points-getters will be recognized at our TEIN party on Discord on Nov. 30. Jason has allocated a non-trivial budget to award prizes ranging from valuable writing-related books to gift cards to inspire you to victory. Plus, we’ll recognize people who have distinguished themselves within the region regardless of their point totals.

Day of Knockout Noveling

DOKN is coming! Woohoo!

Join us on Saturday, Nov. 11, at Jason’s Books & Coffee in Wyoming, Mich., for our annual Day of Knockout Noveling.

Here’s what you can expect:

  • Cost. There’s no cost to attend. The bookstore will be open for normal retail, but attendees aren’t expected to make any purchases.
  • Food. Optionally, bring a dish to pass. Visit the #dokn-prep channel on Discord to coordinate what you plan to bring. If you can’t bring anything, bring yourself. We want you here, no matter what.
  • Need a ride? Go to the #ride-sharing channel on Discord to make arrangments to give or receive a lift.
  • The goal? Write all the words. It’s come-and-go as you please; be here for as long or as little as you like. We’ll frequently break for word wars while leaving plenty of time to chat and eat as your heart desires.
  • Schedule. Doors open at 11a and close at 7p. Given our need to prep, we will not admit people into the space before 11a.
  • Accessibility Notes: We’re located at the SE corner of Burlingame and 44th Street. Plenty of free parking in our lot; we’re also adjacent to The Rapid’s stop on Route 44. No steps to navigate but the doors are manual. Free Wi-Fi. Chairs are rated for 400 lbs. Two single-occupancy restrooms; one is grandfathered while the other is fully ADA compliant including features for sharps disposal, feeding/pumping/changing, and complimentary hygiene products. Space in the conference room is available for folks who need to decompress or destimulate, although the “back office” has two cats and two reptiles in residence. The “back office” and the main event space are on separate HVAC systems; we haven’t had any challenges in the past with cat allergies “up front.” Send Jason a note to ask about specific accommodations.

Write-In Schedule

We’re still finalizing a few write-ins. Please keep your eyes peeled on our Events page for the full list of approved activities. Right now, it appears as if either an in-person or virtual write-in will occur every day of the week except for Sundays.

Our friend Tabitha noted that subscribing to the calendar puts things off by an hour. And this is true. It’s not a problem on our end, but rather a known glitch with how certain systems (e.g., Google Calendar) process events on different sides of a Daylight Savings switch. 🙁

Words from Jason

We’re just a day and a half out from the start of NaNoWriMo 2023. The main event.

We’ve had a lot of new people join the region over October. That’s wonderful! And we’ve already seen some of our old friends come back in person. The great thing about our region is that we support each other and work hard to meet our goals and to inspire others to do the same. We can’t take that for granted; some NaNo regions are cesspools of toxic chaos. But we’ve always been friendly, welcoming, and supportive.

I treasure this culture we’ve built, which got its start with the MLs of the past and continues despite the disruption of the ‘Rona. Each of you is a beautiful, wonderful human, with a story (or a thousand!) buried deep within.

If there’s anything I can do to help you bring out that story, to make it as best as it can be, please reach out. Your success is my success, and your literary triumphs bring joy to all of us in the region.

Buckle up. Thing’s about to get real. But together, we’ll all be winners, regardless of our word counts on Nov. 30.

I believe in you.

1 thought on “2023 Fantasy Quest, & Other Updates

  1. Pingback: NaNo ’23 — One Week In! – NaNoWriMo Grand Rapids

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