The following is an old blog post that I wrote when I finished writing my first novel in 2011. I was in the eighth grade and was very excited to ‘win’ NaNoWriMo. It’s funny to look back on it now, a dozen manuscripts later. I was driven by the need to prove my family wrong – that it was possible for me to write 50,000 words in a month, and I’ve been riding that wave ever since.
Here is a section of a post I wrote after completing my first novel in 2011:
It was one hell of a month and a very big challenge for me. This was something I had never dared to do before. I barely ever finish stories, much less full-length novels!
Here are my tips for doing NaNoWriMo from personal experience:
– Write an outline. Seriously. You’ll never know how valuable it is to you until the month starts and you have nothing to write about. Trust me when I say this because I had no outline and I did not hit my word count on the first day. If you can’t write an outline at least think about what you are going to do.
– Attempt to hit the word count every day. Catching up is no fun. 🙁
– Shove your inner editor up in a cupboard, lock it up, and throw away the key. When you have to write 1,667 words per day they do not need to be there.
– Write whenever you can. At home, on the bus, at school, while the teacher is talking… Jokes 😀 Don’t get yourself in trouble. But you’ll find more time to write if you do this, plus, you don’t have to stay up until 11:30 every night to hit your goal.
– No procrastination! Very important. Watching TV or playing games are no excuse. Think of all of the catch-ups… *groan* You can do that once you’ve hit your daily word goal.
– Do not set yourself an impossible challenge. If you’ve only ever written 100 words in your life don’t aim for 50,000 words. It’s not going to happen and it is completely unrealistic.
– Don’t let writer’s block get the better of you. It will most probably come at the worst of times. The only way to get over it is a) take a break (a short one mind you) b) write something else, something short or c) don’t start playing computer games. It will only make things worse.
– Social media is a no-no! Friends distract one so easily. Also, they won’t need you for that month. turn it off whenever you right.
– Sleep. Sleep keeps you going. It isn’t good to stare at a screen 24 hours a day. Drinking and eating also come under this rule.
– Most importantly:
DO NOT GIVE UP!
You have set yourself a goal and you should try your best to achieve it. Everyone thought of me as crazy but I did it anyway and I succeeded (and went mad along the way…)
So those are all my tips… There are a bit more than I’d thought there would be, I guess I can’t stop writing now! Do you want to hear how I went? Of course, you do! Thank you!
I WON! Yay!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂