NaNoWriMo 2016 Prep: Ten Ways To Stick To It

nanowrimo_2016_webbanner_participant

Happy Halloween, blogglings!  To many, that’s all today is. Halloween. A day to dress up, eat too much candy, watch some scary movies, give out candy to trick or treaters…but for writers, it’s the day before NaNoWriMo.

I, and I’m sure most of us, are mildly terrified, because 50k words in a month is mildly terrifying. However, a lot of people do manage to complete it, (me somehow included in this for two years running…still no idea how), but we all have our ways of finishing, and tricks you can use to finish. I’m going to list some of mine.

NUMBER ONE:

TURN OFF THE WI-FI FOR A COUPLE OF HOURS

There are apps you can use to do this, or you can go the simpler route (but possibly not as effective) of just turning off your router. But procrastination during NaNoWriMo kills. Kill your characters. Not your word count.

NUMBER TWO

STOCK UP ON SNACKS

You don’t write well when you’re hungry. So get easy to eat snacks that actually fill you up: beef jerky, yogurt, string cheese, stuff like that.

NUMBER THREE:

CHANGE THE SCENERY

Leaving your house and writing for a couple of hours at a cafe or a coffee shop or even just at a library can work wonders on your creative juices. If you’re staring at your same laptop screen in your same chair at your same desk every day for thirty days, things are probably going to get stuck. See what Write-Ins are happening in your area, meet up with friends, or just go at it alone. It can’t hurt.

NUMBER FOUR:

GET (OR MAKE) A COVER

Having a cover for your novel can make the project suddenly feel real. There’s a section of the forums where you can order a cover from someone, or familiarize yourself with a website like Canva and make the cover yourself.

NUMBER FIVE:

HAVE SOMEONE ELSE HOLD YOU ACCOUNTABLE

I’ve heard people do this with money (giving someone ten dollars for every thousand words, and every time you hit your goal you get ten dollars back, but if you don’t hit it they keep it), or candy, or even free babysitting. Or just have someone text you every day asking if you’ve hit your wordcount goal for that day yet.

NUMBER SIX:

DOWNLOAD EVERNOTE ON YOUR PHONE

Or bring a notebook/notepad with you everywhere so you can jot down any random ideas you might have and don’t want to loose because you can’t get to the computer at that time. I like Evernote because you can log into it anywhere, it’s not just on your one phone, but even the standard notes app that comes on your phone is good, too.

NUMBER SEVEN:

TAKE BREAKS

Your wordcount isn’t going to die because you didn’t write 1,667 words that day. You’re going to be gone all Saturday? Got sick and couldn’t leave bed? Are just so exhausted you have no energy to write? TAKE A BREAK. You don’t have to sit and stare at your laptop all day in order to finish. That being said,

NUMBER EIGHT:

SET ASIDE FREE TIME

GO SEE THAT MOVIE. Watch a couple of The Office episodes on Netflix. Meet up with friends for coffee. You can exhaust your brain by trying to write all day. And that will be far worse for your word count than if you took a couple hours off.

NUMBER NINE:

STAY WARM

There’s a reason why a lot of people keep fuzzy socks and fingerless gloves in their NaNo Survival Kits. Because nothing kills writing like cold feet (har har).

NUMBER TEN:

DON’T SWEAT IT IF YOU DON’T FINISH

Not everyone does well under pressure. Say you only wrote 25k, or 10k, or maybe you only wrote 200 words. Those are 200 words that might not have been written otherwise. NaNoWriMo is meant to be fun. It’s not fun if you’re killing yourself trying to hit your daily word goals.

So, blogglings, ARE YOU READY FOR NANOWRIMO? Because I am totally not, but I’m also really looking forward to it.

Also, I’ll be keeping you guys updated on Witches Black & Silver on my social media. Mostly on my Twitter, but also on my newly created Bookstagram account (if you’re following my personal account, you have my permission to unfollow and follow my bookstagram. I won’t be offended).

Also, in other news, I’ll be working at the Northwest Chocolate Festival in November, so if you’re going to be there, let me know! I probably won’t be able to chat while I’m working, but I’ll have some free time after my shift.

Happy Halloween, and happy NaNoWriMo!

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6 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo 2016 Prep: Ten Ways To Stick To It

  1. This is going to be my first ever NaNo, so I need all the tips I can get! I don’t think I’ll finish it, and I’m not worried about that, but I want to get as close as possible. I really like the idea of making a cover, that sounds great! And snacks are a must too 🙂 Good luck!

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    1. Good luck with your first year! And you never know, you might finish it. I went into my first NaNo thinking I wouldn’t even get close to 50k, but I did! Don’t sell yourself short.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great tips! This will be my 7th year participating. The times I have “won”, I made a really general outline, which was more like a list of possible scenes and other ideas. It helped me so much to have a cache of ideas to go back to when I was stuck. I also gave myself permission to jump around. If I got bored writing a scene and I just went and started another one.

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    1. That’s what I do, too! The problem is that sometimes, at the end of the month, I have 40k words and a whole bunch of scenes I really don’t want to have to tie together.
      And seven years of NaNoWriMo! Good for you! I’m only on year three and have no idea why I’ve done it for three years running.

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  3. Eeeep, good luck with NaNo, Aine!! *flings cake and confetti at you* I DO like these tips (especially the snack one because….obviously) but I never turn off my wifi.🙈🙊 Good thing it doesn’t distract me too terribly haha, because I would be probably an anxious mess if I knew it wasn’t there JUST IN CASE. Ahem. And I do like making mock covers! OH and having someone hold you accountable?! Really wonderful. That’s why I like November so much, because it’s so motivating to know hundreds of other people are crying together. Erm, typo. I meant writing together.

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    1. You’re lucky, then, because it totally districts me. I can be reading a Wikipedia page about Italian cheeses and then somehow a half hour later find myself reading about quarter horses. No idea how it happens.

      NOVEMBER IS MOTIVATING. I think I’ve written something like 5k words today? It’s awesome yet also mildly terrifying.

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