Eating an Elephant
Tomorrow is the first of November, and Aragorn already loves my story! It is almost National Novel Writing Month. I’ll be joining writers across the world in trying to bang out 50,000 words in 30 days. That’s 1667 words per day, if you do the math. I did all the math, and will be updating it as I get ahead or fall behind on the total count.
Tonight, the word count for my novel sat at 9,953. This means by November 30, I will have 50,000 more words, or 59,953. Hopefully, I will not be done with the novel then and will continue to work on this draft into December. If all goes according to my master plan, I’ll finish this draft for the New Year. What hurdles await?
So how does one write 1,667 words per day? My main resource in tackling this question for November is 2k to 10k: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love by Rachel Aaron. I recommend the book, but if you’re starting NaNoWriMo tomorrow and just want the 2k to 10k part, you can check out her blog post here. I’m uncertain it will work perfectly, but I’ve been using the tips for the last week and have found my word count increasing as I stare at the page blankly for less time each day.
My schedule will call for writing in the morning as often as possible, because I’m the most productive then. Morning may not be your time, but it is likely you’ll have better results if you schedule your writing sometime instead of starting the day and hoping for the best. Here’s a hint: timer set to 30 minutes before you wake up, attached to a space heater in your bedroom. Thank me later.
The next strategy I’m using has nothing to do with writing. I’ve learned that all goals I pursue are better accomplished if I feel well. What does this mean for me? Quality sleep, quality food, quality exercise, and quality time with friends. These things will keep me feeling well so I have the mental energy to tackle that word count goal daily. Yes, this is a busy month. Yes, there will be snacks aplenty all around us. Yes, it is likely cold. Taking care of our health is worth it though. I’m no expert on writing, but I am an expert in efficiency, and you will be 100% less efficient in your writing if you are out cold because you are sick.
What strategies do you have for staying on track with your word count this month? What are you doing to stay healthy and happy in the process? Good luck, writers!