Max over at The Millions posts about the NanoBashing that’s been going on this year. I’ve never done it and probably never will (too organized and I just write slower than that; I prefer my goal-setting and deadlines a bit lengthier and easier to blow!). Anyway, I left a comment over there, which I’m reproducing here and will not speak of it again:
I dunno — it seems to me I’ve read plenty of interviews with writers (and known plenty) who bang out first drafts (occasionally) in a similar time span. As long as the writer is willing to revise, I don’t see the harm. There’s a school of thought out there that says many writers do a quick draft, then a slow one, etc. Often, you don’t know what the story is until you get it down. They’re writing zero drafts, detailed outlines, and maybe a few real novels. I’ve also encountered writers who think the work to death before they start and so turn out quick, impeccable drafts that barely have to be rewritten.
The only way you get better at writing is by doing it. At least some of these people will get a finished book draft* they can work with, throw away, whatever. It seems like the haytas are actually coming from an overly romanticized view of litr-a-chure as being perfectly, painstakingly written, and well, the draft you throw away, the white heat version seems just as much a reality to me. It’s all hard work, no matter the speed, if you want the final draft to matter.
* If you never finish it, who cares how slow and perfect you wrote it?
p.s. See what Callie has to say, as a participant.
p.p.s. See also Justine Musk on time spent, etc., not specific to NaNo, but relevant.