People are getting excited. Ideas are flowing, people are starting to ask if it's okay to start now... it's an energy that's difficult to describe. I have a unique perspective on things; I am able to see things from behind, where HQ starts sending out more planning emails, the MLs start posting more often in the private forums... it's just amazing.
NaNoWriMo is an event that's unlike any other. There's a freedom to it, a sort of rebellion against the traditional views of art and writing and creativity. Instead of a methodical, meticulous crafting of a masterpiece... it's a mad dash to the finish line, the end being more important than the means. Where no one cares if it's great... it's the accomplishment, the completion, the fact that you finished at all that counts.
There's a mad abandon that is absolutely infectious. I started dreaming of what I wanted to write, spawned almost entirely by reading the increased activity in the forums!
It's amazing, it's fun, and I love it. It's this energy that has kept me coming back every year, for eight years.
I think it's why, when other nonprofits sputtered and failed, falling by the wayside, NaNoWriMo continues to be supported by your donations. Why people love it so much that they'll chip in their $10, their $25, in a way that raises hundreds of thousands every year. (We still have more plot bunnies from our summer donation drive available!)
It's amazing. And I'm so amazed to be a part of it.