The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

SE honors monthlong writing event

By Hieu Truong/ reporter

NaNoWriMo isn’t about perfect writing but writing, period, a SE English instructor told a group of writers Nov. 3.

Yvonne Jocks, published author and faculty member, hosted the NaNoWriMo workshop giving tips on creative writing.

“If you wrote it, it counts,” she said. “If you no longer want it, cut and paste it somewhere else.”

NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month and started at midnight Nov. 1. The objective for participants is to write at least a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 p.m. Nov. 30, Jocks said. The program is free, and anybody can be a winner as long as they meet the word-count goal by the deadline.

NaNoWriMo forces writers to just throw out words as fast as they can instead of overthinking, Jocks said. The No. 1 problem causing writer’s block is perfectionism. Some people think their writing isn’t good enough and put it aside. Jocks said the point is to keep going because mistakes can always be fixed.

“Perfectionism kills!” she said. “You are writing a first draft. Be kind to it.”

Several participants including college students, faculty members and even children as young as 9 showed up to the NaNoWriMo workshop.

TR academic advisor Demetrice Hodges brought her three daughters to the workshop. She said her daughters love to write, especially her youngest, Mekaila, who is in NaNoWriMo for school.

Mekaila is currently writing a story about a king and queen who are separated in different parts of the world, so their children go on a long journey to save them. Her goal is to accomplish one chapter at a time.

“When I get stuck, I take a break,” she said about writer’s block.

SE English adjunct Kim Schwarz was last year’s NaNoWriMo winner. She wrote Man After Midnight, a novel about a mother trying to find her daughter who was snatched by an Internet predator. This year, Schwarz is working on a paranormal romance, Crimson Feather. 

“I’m doing it because I love writing,” she said. “This is what I want to do when I retire.”

Like the others at the NaNoWriMo workshop, Jocks is also working on a Nano book, Book Force. She did NaNoWriMo on her own before it started at TCC and has been doing it for seven years. She has won the NaNoWriMo twice.

“You are not competing with anyone else,” she said. “You are competing with yourself.”

Jocks encouraged participants to return for the Nov. 10 workshop on editing their NaNoWriMo work, conducted by English instructor Emily Taylor. The Nov. 18 session will feature Charles Renthrop, author of Escape from Smoothie Island, who will discuss his inspiration and motivation for writing. During the final session Nov. 24, participants will share their work, and prizes will be awarded. The group meets 7-8 p.m. in the Carrier Library.

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