Tuesday, October 11, 2016

NaNoWriMo...For Better or Worse

It's again that time of the year when writers start to look forward to National Novel Writing Month. For those who aren't familiar with it, it is the month where the goal is to write 50,000 words in the month of November. Fun, right?

Here are a few of the things I don't like, and a few of the things I love about NaNoWriMo:

Things I don't like (so we can end on a positive note):
  1. The forums! I lose so much writing time because there are so many fun groups to be a part of. It's easy to get caught up in reading other people's goal and achievements, that you forget about your own.  
  2. Easy to get discouraged by other writers' successes. Especially with all those forums and social media groups. They start posting about the easy five thousand words they wrote today, and you wonder what's wrong with you and your struggle to get five hundred words down. 
  3. Makes me feel like I should pick a new writing project, when what I need to be doing is editing. 
All right, some things I like:
  1. All those fun forums and social media groups that offer encouragement and motivation. (Yep, it's a double edged sword).
  2. Having a goal you share with a bunch of writers--again, great for motivation!
  3. Free word counting and goal making apps to help and document your journey. 
  4. An excuse to explain to your spouse or roommates why you will be a hopeless slob for one month. :)
This is how I make NaNoWriMo work for me:
  1. I explain to my spouse that I will be a hopeless slob for one month. 
  2. I try to get my editing done so I can write a new manuscript in November....but that doesn't always happen, so...
  3. I make the goal fit my writing needs. Right now I don't need to write a new book. (I just finished one last Saturday!) I have two manuscripts that need reworking and editing. So I will change the goal from words written, to words reworked, or chapter's edited. I'll still push myself, but in the direction I need to go.
  4. I set a limit and stay (or try to stay) within it. I enjoy visiting forums, but it's better as a reward for after I meet my daily goal. Either way, I try to keep to a small time frame for my visits. 
  5. I have fun encouraging other writers in their goals. :)

So how about you? What do you like or dislike about NaNoWriMo and how do you make it work for you? 

1 comment:

  1. I love NaNoWriMo! For me the trick is to start with a draft character arc and 3-act structure. The best part is not having time to doubt/second guess. You're just writing :)