NaNoWriMo is one of the best ways for an aspiring writer to kick themselves in the butt and take their writing to a whole new level. Before NaNo, I could never get more than 20-25k words into a book before I petered out and gave up. I won NaNo in 2009 and again in 2010, each time just crossing the 50k finish line, and I did it while working a full time job.
Seems like every morning I get up and look around and there are more articles and blog posts about how the landscape of publishing is changing. In many ways these are scary times, but in other ways they are very exciting times.