What To Do In the Off-Season

Welcome to the dreaded February, the month when sub-zero temperatures attack and there’s no NaNo to sustain us.  Whatever shall we do?

For those of you playing the home game, WE WRITE! (Seriously, you didn’t see that one coming???)

All kidding aside, the off months are tough because we don’t have the collective sturm und drang of thousands of participants, pounding away at their keyboards with their hats askew, banging out 50,000 words or more of their novel.

Don’t despair, Dear Chiwrimo!  We have resources!

First, there are two mid-year events called Camp NaNo – one in April, and one in July.  We even have write-ins planned for both, one on April 11th, and one on July 18th.  The links jump you to our Facebook event pages.

Which is a nice segue into my next resource, our Facebook group.  (Like how I did that, all transitiony and stuff?)  Our little Facebook group has grown to over 800 members!  (Thank you, you awesome Chiwrimos, you!)  If you haven’t joined yet, what are you waiting for?  Visit today and join the conversation – there’s humor, and impromptu writeins, and ideas, and support – everything a growing writer needs to take on the New York Times Bestseller List!

We also have a Twitter stream, @Chiwrimo.  If you like brief, and you like it in 140 characters or less, then this is your oyster.

And finally, drum roll please – I found the A-Z Blog Challenge last year while poking around on NaNoWriMo.org (you know, world headquarters?) for ideas on what to do next.  It’s a month-long challenge where writers post a blog a day for every day except Sunday, and the only stipulation is you must follow the alphabet theme – so, day 1 is A, day 2 is B, and so on.  If this sounds fun, point your browser over there – 2015 signups are now open.  Be sure to link to your blog in the comments here so we can track our local writers and support each other.

Write on!



“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.”
- E.E. Cummings

**New** SEALED BY FIRE is an All Romance eBooks Bestseller!
The Chicagoland Shifters series:

Book 2 TIGER TIGER, an All Romance eBooks Bestseller!
**Coming Soon!** Watch for Book 3, CAT’S CRADLE, out Summer 2015!
The Persis Chronicles:
**Coming Soon!** Watch for Book 2, EMERALD KEEP, out April 2015! 
The Keepsake Tour begins March 8th. 
Other Fun Stuff:
My links: Blog | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | LinkedIn | Pandora 
Knoontime Knitting:  Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Ravelry
Noon and Wilder links: Blog | Taurus and Taurus (NSFW) | Website | Facebook
The Writer Zen Garden:  The Writers Retreat Blog | Forum | Facebook | Twitter | Meetup
National Novel Writing Month: NaNoWriMo | ChiWriMo | Blog | Facebook | Twitter

Start Your Engines!


Welcome, Wrimos, to NaNoWriMo 2K14!  This is the year to win it!  That’s right, we’re going to write ALL THE WAY to 50,000 words – and we’re gonna have a ball doing it!

But what if you’re a brand new Wrimo?  What if you’ve done it before but don’t quite remember how to get rolling?  Never fear!  ChiWriMo to the rescue!

So first, some definitions.  NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writing Month, which is every year during the month of November.  To quote from NaNoWriMo HQ itself:  “It’s a seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing, challenging you to write 50,000 words of a novel during the month of November.  Participation is free, and ther eare no prizes or judges.  The reward?  The rough draft of your novel.  Bragging rights.  And so much more.”  So here’s how to get started:

First, visit the main NaNoWriMo website and sign up.  That will get you your username and an account on the international forums.

Second, set your home region.  We’re assuming, since you’re visiting us here, that you’re either part of Chicago’s region, ChiWriMo, or you’re just so dazzled by our magnificence that you decided to stop by for a visit.  ~grin~  We are the Windy City, after all.

Third, contribute to the cause.  NaNoWriMo is completely volunteer-run and we count on each other for the funds to keep all the magnificence going year to year.  Every little bit helps, so please, take a moment and check out our fundraising area.

Fourth, check out the awesomeness that is ChiWriMo!  You’ve done the first part of that, by finding your way here to the website.  But we’re so much more than just this site!  You’ve already seen the forum, so c’mon in and introduce yourself.  If you are looking for a local write-in, or want to host one, this is the place to talk about it.  Here is the October chat and intro thread to get you started!

Fifth, kick off your writing month in style by joining us at the 2014 ChiWriMo Kickoff Party!  We’ll be a Aje Cafe (caution, link has music) on Sunday, October 26th, at 2:00 P.M.  Aje is located at 2942 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60657.

Sixth, keep an eye on the calendar for in person and virtual write-ins throughout the month of November.  The calendar is located right on the main ChiWriMo.org page.

Seventh, extra credit if you join the group!  The Facebook group, that is!  Here’s the link. Please follow us @chiwrimo and use the hashtags #nanowrimo and #chiwrimo.

Eighth, DON’T PANIC!  If you’re completely overwhelmed, all the action takes place on NaNoWriMo.org.  If you get overwhelmed, don’t worry, that’s natural.  Just go back to home base and take a deep breath.  You can do this.

Remember, a good rule of thumb is no internet until you hit your daily word count goal (hint: 1,667 words).  Some days, that will be all you can manage – and that’s okay.  After all, this is YOUR novel, and YOUR NaNo.

You can write it.


“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.”
- E.E. Cummings

A. Catherine Noon, one of the Four MLs of ChiWriMo 2K14

ChiWriMo: Website | Facebook | Twitter | NaNoWriMo
My links: Blog | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | LinkedIn | Pandora
Knoontime Knitting:  Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Ravelry
Noon and Wilder links: Blog | Taurus and Taurus (NSFW) | Website | Facebook
The Writer Zen Garden:  
The Writers Retreat Blog | Forum | Facebook | Twitter | Meetup
Team Blogs: Nightlight | Nightlight FB Page |  Beyond the Veil | BtV FB Page  | Nice Girls Writing Naughty | NGW FB | NGW Twitter