It’s almost November first…which means – it’s almost National Novel Writing Month!
For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo, presents a challenge to novelists everywhere – write an entire 50,000 word book, in thirty days.
It’s not a challenge for the feint of heart. It takes guts, gumption and lots and lots of coffee. I personally tend to hole up the entire week before just mapping out all of the things I need to do.
Which leads me to this blog. I have a quick list of things to think about for NaNoWriMo prep and a free word-count printable for everyone to use when the festivities actually kick off!
NaNoWriMo Prep List
1. Map out your book. This may seem like a no-brainer, but my first year I didn’t have my entire book mapped out. I started writing organically thinking I would be able to just power through an entire book in one month without an end goal for the story in mind. I had pie in the sky hopes. It’s so important to know what you’re going to be writing, in as much detail as possible, so that you have a clear plan going in.
2. Have a word count tracker. This was another area I learned a big lesson in. Somedays I can sit down and hammer out 5,000 words and not think twice about it. Other days I sit down and can barely put two words together. Having a daily word count tracker not only shows you where you should be each day – but with a little bit of math, it lets you know where, if you need to, add more words to hit your personal goals.
3. Be prepared to commit. NaNoWriMo sounds really exciting, and honestly sometimes it even sounds simple…but 50,000 words in one month is no minor achievement. It takes time and you have to be willing to put the effort into writing every day. That means sometimes, staying up a little later after the kids go to bed or scheduling an hour a day to sit down and really focus on writing to hit your word count.
4. Make YOUR plan. I can sit here and talk all day long about what I do, but at the end of the day, these are just my experiences and things I have learned. Think about how you write, when you’re most productive, what you want to achieve – and make your own individualized plans that work for you.
5. Have fun. Don’t take it all too seriously. I truly enjoy doing NaNoWriMo. It taught me so much about writing and also about myself as a writer. Sometimes you don’t make your word count. We all have lives and things that come up, so cut yourself some slack! The most important thing to remember is to have fun and enjoy writing your story…because remember, the editing process comes next, heh.
So remember when I mentioned on point number two to have a word count tracker? There are a TON of them out there, and you can find them and download them all day long. I made mine for this year, and thought that I would share it with you!
I usually print mine out and hang it where I’m going to see it every. single. day.
We are so close, lovelies! I really cannot wait for November!