April Camp NaNo, Write-Ins, and Sisters12:06
April is always an exciting month for my family. Why? Because April is the month for Camp NaNoWriMo, a whole month dedicated to writing novels. This year my three younger sisters and I are taking the challenge together. Living in a village in the Australian bush as we do, we’re not able to meet up with other Wrimos for write-ins, meetings for writers to work on their novels together. But, ever resourceful writers that we are, we work around that.
Being part of a family of writers is great because it means that there are always people to talk to when I get stuck in my plotting, or to complain to when my characters won’t behave. And it means that there are always people to write with. This year, because write-ins sound like so much fun, my sisters and I decided to organise one of our own.
We choose our living room as the space for our write-in. It has large windows that let in big pools of sunlight and plenty of seats for everyone. My 12 year old sister Sophie curls up on the floor in a patch of sunshine, her laptop balanced on her knees and with a cat sprawled at her feet. Charlotte, 16, settles on a corner of the large sofa. Gemma-Rose, 10, has an armchair with another cat peering over her shoulder. I choose a seat by the window with the autumn sun shining around me
“How long should we sprint for?” I ask. I love writing sprints, which are just blocks of times where we write as much as possible before the timer goes off. We agree on ten minutes. I switch on some writing music. The Piano Guys is our music of choice today. Then I set the timer. “Go!”
For the next ten minutes there is no sound but the busy clicking of keys and the occasional giggle as a character does something hilarious. All too soon the timer dings.. We relax and compare progress.
“I wrote 400 words,” Charlotte says proudly.
“One of my cats is a big scaredy tail,” Gemma-Rose laughs. “He’s afraid of a tunnel.”
“My characters are hiding in a field, but I don’t know where to hide them,” Sophie says with a sigh.
We discuss problems, congratulate each other on our progress, and then set the timer again. Another ten minutes, hundreds more words, and plenty more fun. I can’t help smiling to myself. It’s way more fun to write with my sisters than to work on my own. If I’m ever feeling unmotivated this month, I’ll just have to organise another write-in.
Are you doing April Camp NaNoWriMo? Have you ever been to a write-in? Do you like to write with other people or do you like to be alone?