It is that time of year again. For writers, it can either be the month that gives us the dedication and the push we need to get the words onto the page, or it can drive us to the brink of insanity.
Or even a little bit of both.
National Novel Writing Month is an initiative that challenges authors to write 50,000 words during the course of November. With the website giving you tools to track your progress, team up with other Nano-ers for support and encouragement, and keep track of previous years projects, you have a good start to reaching your writing goals.
To help you on your way towards that ‘winner’ certificate, we’ve come up with five tips to slay your 2019 NaNoWriMo goals!
Gather Your Tribe
We all need a support system, and writing is no different. If anything, writing is one of those solitary tasks that MOST need a good tribe at your back. Whether it is for idea swapping, encouragement, or sprinting, the right writers group can take you from struggling through November, to slaying those word counts. You can gather writing buddies on the NaNoWriMo.org website, posting on social media with the #NaNoWriMo2019 hashtag, or join sprinting grounds on Facebook. There are always other writers out there looking for support systems, so make sure you join in and find your people!
Don’t Let Pressure Throw You Off
We’ve all been there. The idea of having a deadline can seem daunting, and be the ogre in the corner throwing you off your game. The pressure of writing 50,000 words in 30 days sounds scary, but it is doable! One of the biggest tips is to NOT think about the end goal, and don’t let pressure psych you out. Life happens, so when you have those days that the words are just not going to play along, don’t stress. Leave yourself empty days for catch up in your writing schedule, which can take a lot of that pressure and guilt away! Another big thing to remember? Not hitting the 50k is NOT a failure! Did you get words on the page? 10 words, 100 or 1000 are all incredible successes, so you’re already a winner just by trying!
Create A Routine
For people like me who have OCD and need to be organized to reach goals, set yourself up a routine for your writing that works for you. That could be a schedule with a word count break down, leaving empty days for life and catchup. It could be setting aside a certain time of day that is just for you and your writing. But the biggest thing is to set up a plan that works for you, that is easy for you to stick to, and will help you achieve your goals!
Just Get Words On The Page
Like we said, 50,000 words can been scary as all get out! For some books that is more than half the entire novel! In 30 days! *eek!* But the biggest thing to remember is any words are good words! If you don’t hit your day goal, that’s ok. If you hate everything you wrote for another day? That’s ok too! NaNoWriMo is not for perfection, it is for just getting those words and ideas down! Editing can come later. So whether it is 1,000 or 10,000, just write and ignore the numbers.
This is probably the biggest tip for facing NaNoWriMo….stay positive! All the previous tips can help with that, whether through a good support system, setting realistic and achievable goals, or getting any words on the page, each item can help you stay positive during the days of November as you work towards your word count goals. You don’t have to hit the 50,000. You don’t have to complete an entire novel. You just have to write, and be damn proud of any progress you make!
Writing a novel is hard. It is damn hard, and those who do it are warriors of the word who deserve to feel empowered and proud of their efforts. NaNoWriMo can help you focus, build that necessary support network, and work out a big chunk of your novel in a short time frame, and in the end you can look back and feel excited for whatever achievement you have reached!
Do you have other NaNoWriMo tips for hitting the Winner mark? If so, please leave them in the comments!