How I Would Improve NaNoWriMo.

Saturday, December 5, 2015
Note: This was inspired by Cait's post on How I Will Improve Goodreads When I Rule The World. But seeing that I'm not planning to take over the world, I did not put that in the title of my post. :P

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So, unless you're a writer living in some sort of hermit shell (unless you're a actually a hermit crab who's a writer living in a shell without internet? ...), you've probably heard about NaNoWriMo.

If you weren't about to tell from my excess NaNoWriMo posting last week, I absolutely adore NaNo. I mean, hundreds of thousands of writers bonding together over late nights and overdoses of caffeine for a whole month? AND you're hypothetically walking away with a finished novel and/or 50,000 words? Please tell me how it can get better than that. (Actually, it could probably get better if pizza were involved...)

But just for fun, here are some NaNo improvements I would make if I was able to take over their website for a day. Mwahaha.

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1. A NaNoWriMo App.

NaNo on the go? I think yes. It would be awesome if it was possible to check and update your word count on a phone or tablet.

And also, what about reminders and notification banners. "YOU HAVE 5k TO WRITE TODAY." 

Or maybe it could congratulate you on your buddies's accomplishments: "[name] WON! SEND HER A NANOMAIL WITH FLAILING AND INTERNET COOKIES."

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2. Improved NaNoMail Formatting.

Please tell me I'm not the only one who gets annoyed with the NaNoMail system. I mean, it's nice that we're able to send messages to other writers, but can't we at least do it with normal formatting? The current format is really weird and nothing like an actual inbox. There's an automatic line break every time you press enter, and instead of having a thread of emails in one reply, each email appears in a separate thread. (Does that make sense? Probably not. Just go with it.)

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3. Writing Buddy Achievements. 

It's hard for me to remember to check my writer friend's progress each day on the NaNo site. (and even when I do remember, I get distracted 0.65 seconds later with the thought of pizza or new plot ideas.)

So it'd be great to have a banner or space on the home dashboard displaying: [name] reached 50k! or [name] is halfway with 25k!

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4. Change Your Username.

When I first joined NaNoWriMo, I wasn't thinking when I created my username. I made mine "Katie - Grace." Yes, with spaces in between the dash. How completely ridiculous was that? It's rather confusing to try to explain my username to people. Ah, what I wouldn't give to change it to KatieGraceWrite, now.

BUT, NaNoWriMo is weird and won't let you change your username. *discontented sigh* So, when I take over the NaNo site, that's definitely something I will change.

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5. Editing Months.

Ew, editing. I can already hear the groans. (Or the excited cheers if you're one of those people.)

But after everyone finishes their novels, editing is VERY needed. (Unless you're a perfect first draft writer, but let's be honest here: no one is.) So why not have another NaNo month in January or February for editing? A lot of people would sign up. Or at least should sign up.

Hundreds of writers moping, complaining, and whining about editing for a whole month? I mean, what could go wrong?

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6. Social Media Sensor.

Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, NaNo forums, Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube, Goodreads... Most writers have some form of procrastination, and I know that at least for ME, I can get reaaaally distracted on websites like those when I'm supposed to be writing.

So, I propose that NaNoWriMo has a built in plugin. It could sense how much time you spend on a certain website, AND poke you until you get off it after a certain amount of time. (Five, ten, or fifteen minutes.)

I wonder how many more words we'd all actually get done if we stopped talking about writing online and actually wrote....

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7. Group Writing Goals.

If you're familiar with Camp NaNoWriMo, there are cabins filled with 12 people, and together you all try to make a group goal. Which I think is epic, especially when you all gang together to write 40,000 words in the last day. (It's happened with my cabin, and it's awesome. xD)

I think the NaNoWriMo site should add up the 50k of all of your writing buddies participating, and then together you all try to make the same goal. It would make NaNo more of a team activity than it already is. I know this point has flaws because everyone has different writing buddies, but just go with it.

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And finally...

8. A Complete Novel Editor.

*cough* Cause this is completely possible.

You know how you have to paste in your novel to get it validated for winning? 

I think NaNoWriMo should send you those words back, but completely edited. Just... perfect. The plot holes fixed, typos corrected, and characters fleshed out. You could immediately start working on the sequel or another series. ...

... *sigh* Only in a perfect dream world... 

But one can fantasize if they're already making up a pretend list about taking over the NaNo site... right? ;)
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- Katie Grace

How would YOU improve NaNoWriMo? Any of these you particularly like?
(And have you recovered from the NaNo craziness, yet? ;)

37 comments :

  1. I love these ideas- especially the writing buddy achievements and the editing months. I would love a NaNoEdMo.

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    1. *makes a petition for a NaNoEdiMo month* xD

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  2. Oh yes. All of these are fantastic things to change! An app would be fantastic, seeing as I usually write from my tablet anyways. :)

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    1. Ooh, yes! I forgot that you usually write on a tablet. (I wouldn't be able to do that, haha.) It'd be a lot easier going into an app rather than moving onto a computer or in your browser.
      Thanks for commenting!

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  3. YES TO ALL OF THESE. Especially an app. I mean, that would be one of the most useful things. AND THE MAIL DEFINITELY NEEDS A FORMAT CHANGE. It has always bugged me.

    Editing months would be amazing. I hate editing so much, but struggling through it alongside a bunch of other people? Uhm, yes.

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    1. I think an editing month would simultaneously be the best thing in the most horrid way. xD It'd be worse than writing 50,000 words in a month. (for me, at least. :P)

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    2. Yes, it would definitely be harder. But you'd be suffering alongside others so I guess that's a bonus. You can complain and mope about editing to other people who are doing the same thing xD

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  4. I whole-heartedly agree with all these things (except the last one since I love editing--but I guess you could put it on the site and people would love it and I just wouldn't use it). I would also add that maybe it would be nice if the site let you create more than one novel at once. I mean, it would count all the word counts together just the same as before, but that way you could have lots of shiny covers instead of just one that you have to clump under one massive group title if you're like me. Also, I think they should have pep talks every day, rather than just six days out of the month because pep talks make for lovely procrastination material. Also, for the winners goodies, they should offer pizza coupons or gift cards for pizza for something like that because I am with you on the whole pizza obsession.

    And no, I haven't recovered from NaNoWriMo yet. I still have a million and nine more ideas knocking around in my head just waiting to get out and they're all angry with me because NaNoWriMo is over and I'm not writing them out anymore. I'm looking forward to editing so I can feel like a person again and not just a walking idea incubator. :P

    ReplyDelete
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    1. You LIKE editing? Wish I could just send my novels to you so you could edit them. :P

      Ooh, I love the idea of multiple novels. I mean, I could never get to the multiple novels stage, but over achievers like you could get great use out of it. :P

      AND PIZZA COUPONS?! HOW DID I NOT THINK OF THAT? Okay, everyone who might be reading this comment, I definitely think NaNo should add pizza coupons. Like, right now. Or free pizza. :P

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    2. YES. Pizza coupons. xD It could be one of the winner goodies!

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  5. YES! CHANGING YOUR NAME! Ugh. I tried NaNo every year for such a long time, but then I got married so I didn't want to be "Nadine Shea" on there anymore, but I couldn't change it! I finally had to start a brand new NaNo account that then didn't have all the progress from other NaNos. *sigh* Oh well. I love ALL your points! :D

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I knowww. I've been tempted to try to create a new profile, but all my progress from the previous years are on here, and all my NaNoMail, and writing buddies.... Oh well. :P
      Thank you! :D

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  6. Yes on everything. Especially the app :D

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    1. Seems like the app is a popular choice... Hopefully in the next couple of years NaNo will decide to make one. :D

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  7. Yes! The app, the editing month, and the NANO MAILS. Those especially. xP
    And the one I want most is Cabins like on Camp NaNoWriMo. I mean, really, that was the best part of Camp. That day we did 40,000... *sigh*
    That's the reason I like Camp better than NaNo, but if you could have Cabins on the Nano site... That would be epic.

    I have to disagree with the notifications of your Writing Buddies' progress... Unless you could turn them off. Because I've found Buddies' stats discouraging before...
    You should definitely take over the NaNo site. Do it. XD

    ReplyDelete
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    1. THE NANO MAILS. Ack, they annoy me so much. xD
      The day we did 40,000 was the most epic day EVER. Sigh, I almost want us to get behind next Camp so we can do a writing day like that. xD

      Ahhh, I could see that. But I also really like trying to remember to encourage people and I usually forget, sooooo that's why I want it. :P
      Mwahaha. *develops super hacker skills and takes over the site*

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  8. YESSSS OH MY. Someone needs to contact NaNo and hire you. ASAP.

    ~Noor

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    1. I would love to be hired by the site but I have NO idea how to code or develop anything of the sort. But it'd be awesome! xD

      Delete
  9. Oh my gosh somehow I never thought about needing a NaNo app but that would be so useful. o.o Basically, if I were in charge of NaNo I would hand it over to you 'cause these are all genius, especially that last one. And...I sorely need to change my username. Maybe. The one I have now is kind of a huge inside joke from my writing group several years ago and it still makes me laugh, but now people not from that writing group stalk me on NaNo and it's a bit weird to explain. :P

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    1. Dude, right? I was trying to update my word count on my phone but it took soooo long and I'm like "hey, they should have a app!" (It took so long. I sound so lazy. xD)

      Heh, I've always wondered what your username meant. xD But then if you switch to a different account, you won't have all your stats. *grumbles*

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  10. YES you need to take over the NaNoWriMo site just so you can implement these changes. Every. Single. One of them. *nods*

    I really wish I could change my username, especially, and UPDATES ON WRITING BUDDIES. I had so much trouble keeping up with where my writing buddies were during the month and I felt really bad for congratulating them late and /ugh/. We need this.

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    1. Ack YES. I want to be super encouraging to everyone and it would be so much easier if the site said when people made it. :P Cause then I'd either congratulate them twice or not at all or... gah. Yeah. xD

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  11. Give. Me. #8. Now. Please. ;P I needdddd! ;)

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    1. Sameeee I need, toooo. :P
      *whisper* But weren't you the one who liked editing?

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    2. oh, Katie..even I have problems with the repetitive problem of editing. It's such a pain. I'd rather be writing...another thing to edit. ;P

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    3. oh...and if you really want to change your username. You COULD make a new account and load all your novels in there and add all your friends. That would work, right? Because you can add previous novels from past years..I think it would work. Lemme look. ;)

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    4. Ha. That's what horrible -- no matter how much you procrastinate editing by writing, it's just not. going. to. help.

      Hmm... I could. But... I like my stats. :P And my NaNoMail.

      Delete
  12. I want to change my user name so bad! Anywho, I am one of THOSE people who actually enjoys editing because I can go back and laugh...

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    1. *gasp* You... Like... EDITING? *throws my novel at you* Go ahead. Edit it. ;)
      Ahh, very true. I usually cringe rather than laugh. :P

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  13. Oooohh! Me likey these brilliant ideas!! :D Ugh... Can we start a petition for the automatic editor?? Anyone?? ALL OF THESE ARE PERFECTNESS.

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    1. YES. A PETITION. PLEASE. *sigh* I feel like that would be one big coding job. :P

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  14. These are some good ideas! I like the buddy ideas and the app. Both would be really handy. ^ ^

    storitorigrace.blogspot.com

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  15. Hi! I nominated you for the Sisterhood of World Bloggers Award: http://dreams-dragons.blogspot.com/2015/12/sisterhood-of-world-bloggers-award.html

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  16. A NaNo app would be fantastic. And yes, NaNoMail drives me crazy. -__-

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    1. It gives me comfort that I'm not the only one driven crazy by it... -.^

      Delete

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