not nanowrimo

On November 28, 2011, in Art Nerd, Comic Books, Galen Dara, by Galen Dara

I love writers.  Writers are my friends.  Many of my writer friends are doing NaNoWriMo this month. (John Anealio wrote a lovely soundtrack for them).

I was feeling a bit left out until I discovered that there are some nifty art/comic alternatives for us visually oriented folks. 

Last year ComicMix declared October to be National Graphic Novel Writing Month (Or #NaGraNoWriMo on Twitter).   “The goal is simple: By October 31st, you write a script for at least a 48 page long graphic novel.”  Well, okay, that is still more for the writers, but it has much more visual cross-over potential, so I list it here.  (Unfortunately, as far as I can tell, the project has not been repeated this year.)

NaNoMango, however is both art-specific AND happening annually.  “Sharpen your pencils! It’s all about thirty pages of penciled sequential art, in whatever style you choose, a page a day through the entire month of November. ”  I tried something like this a few years back, I didn’t make it nearly to 30 pages, but it was an intriguing start and I plan to attempt it again in the future. (It’s like the souped up extended version of the 24 hr comic challenge.)

Then there’s the 30 character challenge. While lacking a catchy acronymous title, it is still a superb annual event well worth participating in.  Instead of the requirement to come up with a story-line, the challenge is to come up with a new character every day for the month of November.  While art is the emphasis, writers are also encouraged to participate and create character sketches, diaries, vignettes, etc.

It is the 30 character challenge that I am attempting this year; working it in and around my other illustrating work.  You’ll notice, I’m a bit behind so far.  But, fingers crossed, I’ll have it all caught up by the last day of the month.  You may also notice if you look though my posts, I am cheating. Sort of.  I, myself, am not creating these characters from scratch.  Remember how I said I love writers? Well, I have imposed upon a few of my writer friends to give me prompts, ideas, inspirations, etc from their own stories and using them as a jumping off point for the visuals.  It works for me 🙂

So, there you go, a few art-alternatives to your writing friends’ nanowrimo madness.  Have you tried any of these?  Are there any I missed?

Meanwhile, write hard, draw hard.




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2 Responses to not nanowrimo

  1. Thanks, Galen.

    I am well known for being as functional in my drawing as I am in my singing.


    I appreciate art but have no talent for it.

  2. I used nanowrimo last year to jump start a collection of essays. Each day I wrote every memory I could dredge up on a particular facet of my growing up days on a Tennessee farm. This process unleashed even more memories for me to set to paper (okay, to computer).

    That was just a year ago. Now I have an agent interested in working with me to get it into print.

    Of course, this doesn’t mean anyone considering nanowrimo has to wait eleven months to give it a try. If a structured exercise like this has a chance of working for you, then get busy and start writing, drawing, composing…..



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