Sunday 23 January 2011

NaBloPoMo: National Blog Posting Month

Writers come in all shapes and sizes, a statement which may seem descriptive of their physical form but refers to their output. We can start at the top with the professionals, such as Stephen King and James Patterson and work our way down to the first-timers and the wannabes as may be showcased in NaNoWriMo or even to small as the drabble.

Many who are pouring their hearts out on the Net have personalised their prose in a literary vehicle known as the blog. This means of expression is shorter with a content that is as varied as any possible form of writing: diary, short story, newspaper report or poetry. The rule is that there are no rules and the author is free to do anything he or she wants.

NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month was created with the idea of promoting writing, specifically writing a novel. It would follow that somebody would get the idea of promoting the writing of blogs as a separate endeavour. After all, a blog does have an ultimate objective quite a bit different from that of penning the great American novel. By the way, that actually does happen. Although statistically few out of the total number signing up for NaNoWriMo get published, the web site does list the lucky or should I say talented few who have passed the test and gone on to have their work picked up by a legitimate publisher.

So, what's NaBloPoMo all about? National Blog Posting Month started with the idea of updating your blog every day for the month of November, following the idea of NaNoWriMo. However it seems that people have gotten into it so much, the official organisation has now modified this to cover all months. All you have to do is update your blog every single day for a full month. [chuckles] I guess if you're going to pick a month, we're just coming up to February so here's your chance to select the shortest month of the year! Ha!

I see that one of the ideas for writing a month of daily blogs is to pick a theme for your month. The FAQ says this is optional but the idea is laid on the table of writing each of the daily postings on a specific topic. The monthly theme is found in the upper left hand corner of the main page of the NaBloPoMo web site. The theme for January 2011 is "Friends".

Step number one on your blog odyssey is to sign up. Just go to the web site and in the upper right you'll see the link "Sign Up". Before or after, your choice, you should read over the FAQ to get a handle on the various ins and outs of the challenge. Point #2 talks about getting on the blogroll where you submit a link to your blog.

Honour System
An FYI is in order. NaNoWriMo works on an honour system. From their Codes of Conduct:

Every year, we get dozens of posts accusing others of cheating at NaNoWriMo. Please—don't worry about cheaters. NaNoWriMo is an honor-system challenge; no one is cheating anyone but themselves if they don't write the novel they said they wrote.

Does NaBloPoMo work the same way? Does anybody check to see if yes, you have actually posted every single day of the chosen month? Beats me but I did send them an email to find out although I have found other references which confirm that yes, this is an honour system. Consequently you can succeed if you lie but as NaNoWriMo suggests above, the only person you're cheating is yourself. [chuckles] Now what fun is it if you're walking around telling everybody you've done something when you haven't? Anybody else want to be the first to mention the nose of Pinocchio? [laughs]

Finishing the challenge
Like NaNoWriMo I suppose the objective here is, once again, quantity as opposed to quality. I believe Angela may have summed it up nicely with his blog entry of December 1, 2010 entitled "Blah blah blah" but repeated 15 times:

I completed another NaBloPoMo although this year I feel like I cheated a little bit. 90% of my blog postings were pure crap. Maybe, after nearly nine years, I’m just running out of stuff to bitch about.

Heather announces her successful completion of her third December of daily posts but in perusing her work, I discover that she has a weekly blog entry called "thousand word Thursday"; each one consisting of a picture. It seems this lady is a bit of a photographer (Flickr) and has incorporated her hobby into her blog. After all, the tag line of her blog is "words & images from the days of my life".

Eden M. Kennedy
Apparently we owe this entire self-imposed writing trial to this lady who says in her profile:

In 2006 I started NaBloPoMo as kind of a joke because I'd failed at NaNoWriMo the previous year. I decided that if I couldn't write a novel in thirty days, at the very least I could post on my blog every day for a month. I thought maybe thirty or forty people would do it with me. We ended up with around 2,000 bloggers, I think. In 2007 we moved to a real web site and got almost 6,000 people, and by January of 2010 we had more than 16,000 members. WHERE DID ALL YOU PEOPLE COME FROM?!

Ms. Kennedy may have failed at NaNoWriMo that one time, but according to the About page of her own blog, it seems that she has gotten around to completing several books which are now on Amazon!

Final Word
The gauntlet has been thrown down. Who out there will pick it up and accept the challenge? Whether it's NaNoWriMo or NaBloPoMo, I see that anybody has to gear themselves up to the challenge of setting aside the time each and every day for an entire month to complete the requisite number of words slash blog posting. Is one harder than the other? Or are the two just different with their own unique trials?


National Blog Posting Month

National Novel Writing Month

Has NaBloPoMo truly caught on? It doesn't yet have an article on Wikipedia. Should I interpret that absence as a telling indicator of its renown in the world? Or is it just that Jimmy Wales needs to rally the troops and get one of them to cough out an article?

Also of interest...
my blog: James Patterson
my blog: Assembly Line Writing
my blog: On Writing by Stephen King
my blog: Writing: Less is more: the drabble
my blog: NaNoWriMo: National Novel Writing Month
my blog: Writing: November Challenges


Site Map: William Quincy Belle

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