Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Writer Wednesday: NaNoWriMo Tips

Even though I'm not doing NaNoWriMo, I do love to fast draft so I figured I'd share some tips for anyone who needs a little push to get over that middle slump that sometimes creeps up when we're drafting.
  • Keep momentum  I'm going to start with this one because we all know that the excitement of NaNo drives you in the beginning, but it's tough to keep that excitement up mid-month. The key is to keep going. Don't slack on those word count goals. Keep up the pace you've been maintaining.
  • Don't be afraid to jump around  If you get stuck on a scene, skip it and go back to it later. Keep pushing ahead. Sometimes when the middle starts to get to me, I jump ahead to the climax because it's exciting and fast paced. That gets me into the groove again and keeps the words flowing.
  • Set small goals  Daily word count goals can sometimes be overwhelming. Break them up into what you want to write in a twenty-minute span. Setting short goals, means you'll feel a sense of accomplishment sooner, and that can motivate you to keep going and write more.
  • Reward yourself  You know that cookie you're dying to eat. How about after you reach 1,000 words? Give yourself a reason to want to get those words down and then reward yourself for a job well done.
  • Share your goals and progress  When I ran competitively, one of the things I did before a race was tell everyone what time I wanted to run. If they knew my target time, I'd feel accountable because I knew they'd ask me if I met it. Tell people your goals and then check in with your progress. Don't let writing be a solitary experience.
  • Feed off the energy of others and inspire others just the same  Feeling like you're in a slump? Don't post about that. Encourage others to keep going and let them do the same for you. Think positively. Cheering on others just may spark some creativity in yourself.

Good luck NaNoWriMo participants! You can do this. Keep those fingers flying across the keys.

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

26 comments:

  1. Great tips!!! I did NaNo a while back and I do remember that halfway slump. Of course, the middle of my books are always where I start to feel slumpy, so that makes sense!

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    1. Lol. I think most writers feel that way about the middle of a draft.

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  2. This is excellent. Even beyond NaNo. I need to apply a few of these right now. Thanks.

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  3. And turn on your epic soundtrack and dance around the house like a maniac when you need to stay conscious. =)

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  4. Don't be afraid to jump around is one I find helpful, and yes, try to keep the momentum.

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    1. Exercise is very important, for both sanity and physical health.

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  5. These are great tips. I drafted one of my published novels in two weeks during vacation time, which was my fastest draft, proving I can do this. I pretty much did everything on this list.

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  6. I'm big on the reward system and I love to skip around.

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    1. Rewards aren't just for kids. Adults love them too. ;)

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  7. Excellent advice! And it's true, there's nothing like encouragement to keep you on your game. I often get some of the best ideas - or solutions if I'm stuck, while taking my daily walk.

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  8. Great advice! You are amazing when it comes to getting your words down on paper, so I appreciated hearing these techniques. Thanks!
    ~Jess

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  9. I'm not participating but want to send loud cheers to those who are!

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  10. I'm not doing NaNo, but I've been stuck on the same scene for two weeks. Going nowhere. Think I'll take your advice and go to another scene. Thanks.

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    1. Yes, move on. You can always go back to that scene later.

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  11. I don't do national Month/Week/Day of anything, either. But your points are good for any self-set project. I suspect your point about being accountable to others is what makes many find these drives so helpful.

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    1. I think so too. It really motivates you.

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  12. These are good tips, indeed. I especially like the one about changing scenes. I'm not doing Nanowrimo, but I do need to write faster, so this is good stuff.

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