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In fact, let me change that to — How to Win NaNoWriMo in 3 (non) Easy Steps! Which, if truth be told, is much more appropriate. Nothing in life worth going for is ever easy.
How to Win NaNoWriMo in 3 (non) Easy Steps!
Disclosure: I’m by no means an expert, but I won by writing 50,000 words in the month of July during #CampNaNoWriMo (find that post here). I plan to do it again during this November’s 30 day stint over at the main site NaNoWriMo.
Oh, and a heads up – this post is hardly a quickie. Take your time and really savour the moment with this one.
So, any tips?
- Grab yourself a writing buddy!
Seriously, chaps, this is the clincher for me. Writing can be a solitary and lonely profession if you let it — especially if you live among wruggles (my version of muggles but those with an aversion to pens, not wands). The support of other writers is tantamount to winning! Miss this at your peril
Where to find other writers online?
There are lots of writing communities online with forums where you can meet other like-minded people. Just Google writing forums.
Writing buddies are good to keep you on track, they stay supportive, don’t mind when you vent, and best of all they understand what you’re going through. Listen to them. Help each other out. Before long you’ll see the magic appearing on your page — in full on plotter style.
((Waves to Amy and Devon!))
You can also mingle with other writers on Social Media. Instagram, Twitter and Facebook are great places to get started. Look out for those who share the tags #amwriting #amediting #author #authorlife. Honestly, there are heaps of writing tags out there. #WriterWednesday is another one. Appropriate, considering what day it is. 😀
2. Write every day!
Okay, this is easy to say, but not as easy to do. Don’t forget, during NaNoWriMo you need to reach 50,000 words in 30 days. I break that down to 1,667 words a day. But you also need to be aware of days you know you’ll be unable to write. Like having a day out with your family or friends. There will also be days where you’re going to have unexpected interruptions stopping you from writing. Don’t beat yourself up about this. Just accept it for what it is (a minor irritation), take it in your stride and push harder the next day.
Have a pen and paper with you at all times. Jot things down as and when they spring to mind. Usually at the most inappropriate moments. Don’t let this happen to you. Always have a notepad to hand. Be prepared to catch your thoughts, like a dreamcatcher catches dreams.
Plus, I find this is great for when you sit at your computer and go to write, as you always have something written down, which can start off a good day of writing – Tommy Cooper style. Just like that! It’s already there in your notebook, so not much effort is needed to get started
From: Black Adder the Third (TV Series) Season 1, Episode 5 Amy and Amiability (1987)
I Have a Cunning Plan, M’Lord
3. Plan Your Writing Time Ahead!
“Fail to plan and you plan to fail!” I’m not too sure who said this. But I like it.
It’s October now, so go through the month of November on a calendar and work out if you can see any days in November where you are NOT going to meet your daily writing goal. For example, I have a lot of family birthdays in November and expect quite a few hangovers. Then there’s the pre-Christmas celebrations… Anyway, know in advance there’s not lot you can do about this, except perhaps live your life like a hermit (not advisable). Therefore, my best advice for peeps with a busy life, is to mark these days happily with a big fat zero on a calendar.
Then — now this is the biggie — work your word count goal out by dividing it by the number of days you have left to write. This should give you a realistic daily word count goal. Although, in the big mad rush to get finished, and during that busy time in November leading up to Christmas, nothing is set in stone, but a guideline will always help to smooth away some fears and harsh edges
Always have a plan, my friends. Always have a plan. Think Baldric from Blackadder, and take a leaf out of his book and have a cunning plan, m’Lord.
Until next time, take several super, planned hugs,
P.S. Here’s my NaNoWriMo profile link if you’d like to follow my progress (and perhaps have a good laugh at my expense), or maybe add me as a writing buddy, so you can really goad me — I’m all yours.
P.P.S. I have won NaNoWriMo before, but I used to forget my passwords and create new accounts under different names just because it was easier. Now I wish I hadn’t. I love my stats. I wish I had all of them (the wins and the fails from previous years) all neatly stacked up in a nice orderly fashion. But alas, that was not meant to be. You live and learn, chaps. Live and learn.
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