For those participating for the National Novel Writing Challenge (the official one), hope you have your fingers warmed up, typing ready, and strength of willpower prepared for this approaching month.
Best tips I know for this event:
- Learn to shut off your inner editor as you write. You can spell check and fix things when you do your editing later.
- Don’t let an ‘off day’ deter you. You can make up the time. I know of one woman who lost 20,000 midway through and still managed to hit the 50,000 word mark by Nov. 31.
- Remember if you’ve signed up via their site, your friends and family should be supporting you- not competing. That same woman who managed her 50,000 word count found a number of times to cut me down through the month rather than help by offering words of encouragement. Surround yourself with positive, supportive people to help you- not those who would hold you back.
- Reward yourself if you’ve hit your word count for the day. For some, this might be a piece of chocolate, a bubble bath, or a foot massage from a good friend/lover.
- Remember why you’re doing this. Although there’s a number of reasons, for myself, I joined to see if I could write that many words in a day. I also wanted to challenge myself. For other members, I heard reasons such as ‘finishing a story completely’, or ‘make writing a daily habit’ also comprised of reasons.
- I highly recommend No Plot? No Problem by Chris Baty which gives tons of tips for the NaNoWriMo but also just about writing as well.
If you’re not joining the official NaNoWriMo, consider joining my Alternative Challenge, where you choose your own word count, on a current or new project, which can include fiction or non-fiction. See my page on the rules and graphic you can post on your web site!