Week III: Winners, Inbound!

We’re now into the third week of The Main Event. This is the week where we start to see the early winners surge while, for others, their confidence wanes.

This is the tough slog of noveling. Writing is hard, no getting around it. Even a short novel of 50,000 words is a huge endeavor, let alone pulling it off in a mere 30 days. I believe that any progress that helps you to fine-tune your story, grow your craft as a writer, and connect you with fellow scribes is well-worth the investment.

Regardless of whether you’ve won, or are on track, or will not cross 50k this year, your effort is what matters — and all of you who “suited up and showed up” are winners regardless of your tally at midnight on the 30th.

You got this! Now, go and write ALL THE WORDS. 🙂

The NaNoWriMo Forums

As some of you know, there’s a significant organizational situation under review by the board of directors of National Novel Writing Month. The Sunday before last, in response to multiple complaints generated by nanowrimo.org forum users, the board of directors intervened to shut down almost all of the public forums and to begin an emergency investigation into allegations that a former forum moderator had engaged in inappropriate conversations with minors. The board asked all current staff and volunteer moderators to stand down while they worked — a process that’s still unfolding. In the meantime, the investigation has expanded to include questions about staff responses more broadly as well as the culture of the forums and overall moderator standards. It appears as if most of the forums will be closed until at least the new year.

I want to stress that the present HQ situation does not directly affect our region. Kess and I consented to have our regional HQ forum shut down because we do not use it, and haven’t since the 2019 go-live of the Discourse platform. Normal HQ operations apart from the forums have not (so far as we know) been affected.

If you believe that you’ve experienced or witnessed significant misbehavior in the region or on the NaNoWriMo forums — specifically, physically/emotionally/sexually abusive conduct directed toward minors or toward at-risk adults — please inform either of your municipal liaisons (Jason or Melanie/Kessalia) promptly or bypass us and go straight to the NaNoWriMo board. Any other feedback will be welcome during our regional and national post-November surveys. Please review our Code of Conduct for our standards about the protection of minors and other potentially at-risk participants.

Read the recent statement from the NaNoWriMo board of directors for additional important information and the board’s independent email address. Their message went to the largest participant list, but if you’ve shut off emails from HQ, you will not have seen it.

Fantasy Quest Leaderboard

Sorry that this was delayed. Results are as of the 20th.

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The Week Ahead

Here’s what’s going on this week:

Various & Sundry

A few other things:

  • FANTASY QUEST: Don’t forget to log your points! When the season wraps up in a scant nine days, we shall bestow various gifts and rewards on people. Yes, on the top vote-getters — but also people who show meaningful progress, or who engaged in a cool way to support and uplift others in our region. If you think someone deserves special recognition for going above-and-beyond, send Jason a direct message on Discord or drop a note to ML@nanogr.org.
  • END-OF-YEAR SURVEY: Early next week, we’ll release the end-of-year survey for the region. This survey is fully anonymous (we do not ask for identifying info or track metadata) and is run through the well-regarded LimeSurvey survey tool. This survey will ask you questions about your experience this year and your thoughts for future years. We ask that everyone complete it; your feedback directly affects our plans for 2024.
  • MUSKEGON: In case you missed it, we’ve added a Muskegon event on the Tuesdays that otherwise were empty, so come join Mary! She’s awesome!
  • Plans for 11/30: We’ve got a lot of things on to wrap up the season! Officially, The End Is Nigh will be held on Discord. In addition, the lovely folks at The Bluestocking Bookshop in Holland are holding an in-person wrap party! Come to either, come to both, or come to none — mark the end of the season however you like — but stay tuned in early December for news about the Fantasy Quest awards plus some edit-focused small-group conversations.