Hey hey everybody! Me again and it’s November, which means it’s time for good ol’ NaNoWriMo. I’m not doing it myself personally this year, but I’ve done it in the past successfully and I still want to make sure that those of you who are in it make it out alive.
So here’s some tips to help you out, especially if it’s your first time doing NaNoWriMo.
1. Get To Know Your Golden Time!
Some of us are better morning people. Some of us are night owls. Whatever you are, it’s a good idea to get to know when you work best. The biggest myth that people buy into is that they have absolutely “no time” to write.
And that’s simply not true. It’s more accurate to say that one doesn’t want to commit the time or energy. Think about it. Every day, we all get 1440 minutes. The same exact 1440. When someone says they have no time, it’s saying all 1440 of those minutes will be spent in constant work or action, which no normal human being can pull off. People don’t spend all 1440 minutes working, or all 1440 minutes with their eyes on their children. It may seem like it at times, but seriously that’s more exaggeration than norm.
But more importantly, you don’t need tons and tons of free time to write. You just need a little bit of time and the know-how to be efficient with the little time that you have.
For example, I can write about 8-10 pages in 3 hours. Before I could only write 6. Then I moved up to 7. And I’m still working on improving this. But 8-10 pages is easily the daily past word goal for NaNoWriMo, and that’s just 3 hours.
You might write faster, or slower depending on the time, which is why it’s so important to know what time you’re most efficient! You can write more in less time if you concentrate you writing on those area, and you don’t have to rearrange your whole day just for writing.
2. Don’t Fall Behind (if you can help it)
I’m going to say this and people will do it anyway, but what the hey it’s gotta be said. Shit happens in life. You’ll come home and knock out on the couch after a hard day. You’ll be out with friends maybe and forget. You’ll have reports due, essays to finish, homework, slide presentations, toddlers that insist on putting cheerios where they don’t belong. All these things will stand in your way on your way to 50, 000 words
But don’t stop. Even if you’re not hitting that 1667 every day, nothing is a momentum killer quite like not writing every day.And when you’re not writing every day, you have to compensate for that lost ground. 2 days of missed NaNoWriMo is over 3k words by itself. Heck even 1 day of missed NaNoWriMo hurts. Unless you’re one of those people who can pull off magic 10,000 sessions at any time, don’t risk it. Squeeze in writing time whenever you can, even if it’s a little bit here and there.
3. Get What You Need Ahead Of Time
If you’re having trouble squeezing in words through out the day, maybe try preparing some minor tasks ahead of time like packing a meal the day before, maybe set your clothes out so you have a little extra time in the morning, or even outsource some tasks.
With writing specifically, try organizing what you need ahead of your writing session so you don’t have to scrabble around and waste time to get it when you’re in the middle of writing. Nothing worse that getting knocked out the zone.
4. Get Rid Of Distractions
Social media and tv are the biggest perpetrators for this. Cellphones too. But none of those three are very helpful when you’re trying to push through NaNoWriMo. Personally, I don’t watch tv anymore, and I barely use social media. Honestly, the decision to cut them out boosted my writing productivity immensely.
Now I’m not saying you should quit cold turkey. But there are apps like Freedom and SelfControl that help bar you from certain websites for a period of time if you’re genuinely having trouble staying away. I like SelfControl personally which is free to use. Other alternatives include turning off wifi altogether (saves so much laptop battery life), or maybe even going somewhere you know you won’t get super distracted, like the library or a coffee shop. But really it could be anywhere you’re comfortable.
But the big tip of all tips…
5. Don’t Give Up
Because you’d be surprised about the comebacks people can make in the last days. And even if you still don’t make it, there’s always next year!