This post was written for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our encouragement or insecurities on the first Wednesday of the month, to join the group or find out more click here.
OPTIONAL IWSG DAY QUESTION:
Did you ever take part in National Novel Writing Month? If not, why not?
First, I’ll answer some questions about NaNoWriMo that new writers might have.
Who, When, What, Where, and Why
Who? Anyone can participate by signing up and announcing their project on the NaNoWriMo site then start writing on the 1st.
When? All of November.
What? NaNoWriMo stands for is National Novel Writing Month. It is a free yearly contest. The goal is to write 50k in the 30 days of November.
Where? At home, your local library. Alone or with friends. Open up your computer and get the story down. About ¾ of the way through to the end of November, the site will have a text box to enter your work. Don’t worry, they don’t save a thing. It’s only proof of word count. If you’ve hit the 50k mark or more, you are a winner.
Why? So many reasons, like all the sponsor’s prizes.
They are small potatoes compared to making writing breakthroughs like proving you can finish a story.
CampNaNo vs NaNoWriMo
They are different in two ways: CampNaNo runs April and July and the word count is determined by the contestant. Lower pressure contest for those who prefer an easier stride.
Have A Strategy
Daily Word Count: First and most important is to break it up into doable pieces. Some divide by 20 and write 2.5k per day, taking the weekends off. Some divide by 30 and write 1.67k per day. Stick to this plan and you’ll win.
October is really NaNoWriMo Prep Month
If you’re a planner, you’ll have your research, character profiles, and settings well organized and ready. And the big one, you’ll have a detailed outline waiting.
If you’re a pantser, you could give yourself 20/30 writing prompts.
Trust me. At the halfway point, it can be a slog. Do yourself a favor, give yourself something to kick-start your daily word count when your momentum wanes.
One last piece of advice is don’t go back and fix anything. Instead, type these words: Try Again. Then start the scene from the beginning with your new perspective. Don’t look back.
If you must: jot down what is distracting you, let go, and move forward.
A note for Scrivener fans: In October Scrivener offers an extended trail in anticipation of NaNoWriMo and a half price offer if you win.
Answering the Question…
Have I ever participated in NaNoWriMo?
I learned to write, Try Again.
To Start again. To Move forward. And to Get It Done.
Now, a question for you
If you’d participated, what did you learn? If not, what is your strategy to succeed?