NaNoWriMo: An Aside

Does anyone else find it interesting that ABC waited until the latter half of the month to report on NaNoWriMo? Wouldn’t it be beneficial to publish such a report sometime in October to give readers an opportunity to participate in NaNoWriMo themselves? Of course it would, which is exactly why ABC waited until 17 November. They’re hoping you’ll forget all about NaNoWriMo between now and 01 November 2006.

That’s right, ABC doesn’t want you to participate in NaNoWriMo. Why? Well, let’s think about that for a minute. NaNoWriMo is just the sort of story with which news organizations prefer to end their broadcasts. After twenty or fifty minutes of stories about natural disaster, war, corrupt governments and the atrocity of the week, it’s nice to be able to close with a piece on pets helping the elderly or a woman who knits mittens for the homeless. So you’d think NaNoWriMo — with its thousands of aspiring novelists and fund-raising campaign to build libraries in third-world countries — would be a golden nugget of human-interest For most media outlets, that’s exactly what it is.

But not for ABC. See, ABC is owned by the Walt Disney Corporation, and Disney has a vested interest in burying NaNoWriMo. Just so there’s no confusion, let me make it perfectly clear: the House of Mouse wants every single one of NaNoWriMo’s 62,000 participants this year to fall flat on their faces. The nearly 400 million words already written by WriMos across the globe represent a significant danger to Disney’s bottom line, especially in foreign markets, where Disney has had less than phenomenal success.

How? To understand that, you need to know something about the recent history of the Walt Disney Corporation. In the spring of 1994, Michael Eisner (CEO of Disney at the time) covertly met with U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno on four separate occasions. Recently, a CIA investigation recovered documents connected to Eisner’s meetings with Reno, and the specifics of the meetings are just now being made public. One of the documents, signed by both Eisner and Reno, is an agreement to… hell, I don’t know. I’m just making shit up to avoid writing my novel.