Night of Writing Dangerously

The 2013 Night of Writing Dangerously Write-A-Thon

I didn't know if last year's Night of Writing Dangerously could be topped, but this year's National Novel Writing Month write-a-thon was a great night. The event raised money for the Office of Letters and Light, which funds literacy outreach like the Young Writers Program. 

In addition to being a good time for a good cause, the evening turned out to be surprisingly productive! In between catching up with other writers and dining on the tasty vegan dinner and donuts (don't worry future NOWD attendees, vegan was only one of many options), I wrote 3,000 words in the next Jaya Jones novel.

San Francisco's Julia Morgan Ballroom was packed with 250 writers for six hours of writing and other shenanigans. Writing is often such a solitary pursuit that the energy of events like this is invigorating. The theme of the evening was "noir," so we dressed accordingly.

With the Herron sisters, Bethany and Rachael.

Writing beside my partner in crime who I've been writing next to for 9 years!

The San Francisco Bay Area chapter of RWA had a great showing.

The Julia Morgan Ballroom during the Night of Writing Dangerously.

The Night of Writing Dangerously

I received a last-minute invitation to attend the NaNoWriMo Night of Writing Dangerously write-a-thon last night. So I scrapped my plans to try out a new recipe from the fabulous new Kris Carr cookbook, and headed to San Francisco!

The Night of Writing Dangerously serves the dual purpose of being a benefit to raise money for the Office of Letters and Light and providing a place where NaNoWriMo writers from all over the world can come together as a group to get to know each other and be inspired to finish their novels. I'm not kidding about people coming from all over the world. There were people at the event from all over California and across the US -- plus a couple dozen people from Canada and even a few people who traveled from overseas!

Writers who raise $250 or more can attend the yearly event and bring a guest. I've raised money and attended in the past, but didn't have the time or energy to do it this year. I thought it wasn't in the cards for me to attend this time, until it turned out Rachael Herron -- author, knitter, and wonderful friend -- had an extra ticket.

The event was a success. Their goal was to raise $50,000. They raised over $60,000. And on the personal level, I wrote about 2,000 words, bringing me to 40,000 words of the 50,000 NaNoWriMo challenge. I'm not a great night-time writer, though, so I don't think the scenes I wrote last night were very good. But the most important thing about writing events like this is to be inspired by other writers. I had fun with old friends and made some new ones. And by the end of the evening, I was positive I could turn the messy draft I'm writing into a great proposal I'll be able to show my agent.

The Julia Morgan Ballroom in San Francisco, filled with 250 writers.

Me and Rachael taking a break from writing. 

 Snapshot of my workspace: laptop, program, and vegan cupcake.