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A Round of Words In 80 Days: A New Breed of Writing Challenge

December 29, 2010

I know, I know, it’s Thursday.  What’s one of the IBC founders doing posting on a gust post day?  Well, because I have non-IBC business to discuss.  See, in addition to IBC, the evil day jobs, and writing, I’ve also decided to start a writing challenge.  Because I don’t have enough on my plate. :snerk:  No really, I am filling what I perceive to be a void by starting A Round Of Words In 80 Days.

See, I am a writing challenge junkie.  I’ve tried just about all of them at least once: NaNoWriMo (1 month), Fast Draft (2 weeks), MayNoWriMo (1 month).  There are others, of course.  But you get the idea.  What do they all have in common?

They all demand that you ignore life for this short, specified period of time, put the book first and write.

This is a problem for me and is why almost without exception I have “failed” at these writing challenges.  Because I have a life, darn it, one that I can’t check out of if I expect to keep my job and my spouse.  So I need a more moderate, long-term challenge, one where I can set and tailor my own goal.

There used to be one called 70 Days of Sweat, which I adored because it was REASONABLE.  But the last round of that was two whole years ago, with no indication they are planning on starting it up again.  I couldn’t understand why we didn’t have a long one several times a year.  Why just one month?  That’s where the real inspiration came from for A Round of Words In 80 Days—that and a healthy dose of if you want something done, you have to do it yourself.

So here’s what ROW80 (that’s our Twitter hashtag, FYI) is about:

  • You have 80 days for your Round of Words
  • There are 4 Rounds each year.
  • Your goal can be anything you like as long as it is MEASURABLE. If you’re already in the middle of a WIP, that’s fine.  Tailor your goal to suit that.  You may even want to set mini goals (I want to finish the last 40k of this novel.  Then I want to spend the last 20 days revising it at x pages a day.).  There are a lot of elements to writing a book other than the writing itself.  Plotting.  Outlining.  Character Interviews.  Whatever.  Set your goal to match wherever you are right now on your WIP.  If you want to use your Round for editing a novel, that’s fine too.  Just know that this is, at heart, a writing challenge, so all the weekly inspirational posts will be geared in that direction.
  • There’s no mandatory daily word count. Every writer is different, everyone has different schedules.  You set a goal that works for you.  Find a way to make writing a priority in your life in a way that FITS.  But set SOME kind of schedule and be CONSISTENT.
  • Once Sign-Ups are open (that will be January 1st), you’ll make a blog post stating your measurable goal and swing by the site to link to it in the Linky Tools list. If your goal changes because you’ve met it before the 80 days is up, just write a new one and link to it on a check in day.
  • There will be twice a week check-ins on Sunday and Wednesday where you’ll update us via the same method. The idea here is that folks can travel around to everybody’s blogs and drop a supportive comment.  We’re dividing into teams under each of the sponsors so that everyone has a manageable list of folks to visit once a week.

That’s it.  Simple, inclusive, sane.  The first round begins January 3rd, 2011 (just enough time to get over your New Year’s excesses).  Now pick up that WIP and get 2011 off to a great new start by making writing a consistent part of your life.


Kait Nolan is a writer of action-packed paranormal romance that features a fresh and inventive mythology.  No sparklay vamps here!  Her debut release, Forsaken By Shadow, is currently the IBC Book of the Month and will be featured during the launch of ParaYourNormal in December.

It is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Sony, Scribd, Amazon UK, Kobo, BooksOnBoard, Diesel, and SpringBrook Digital. It is available in audio from Audible, BooksOnBoard, Crossroad Press, Simply Audiobooks, and SpringBrook Digital.

She can be found at her blog, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, MySpace, and Pots and Plots (her cooking blog).

3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 30, 2010 6:39 pm

    Oh, I love this! Me and my WIP are in! But I’m new to this writing challenge thing. Do we create a twitter blog and use that to post our progress?

    • Kait Nolan permalink
      January 3, 2011 10:46 am

      All the details are over at the ROW80 site 🙂


  1. I am writing a round of words « The Wheel and the Star

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