5 NaNoWriMo Tips

Signed up to do NaNoWriMo (or even Camp NaNoWriMo)? Here are some tips to keep you at the top of your writing game.

Set a goal other than writing 50 000 words

While a goal of writing 50K words is no small feat, just having that dangle in front of you will not necessarily inspire you to great lengths to reach the goal. However, setting a goal like “finishing the first draft of novel Untitled” can lead you to write even more than 50K because you are excited about that goal.

Or, if like me, you end book 1 and realise you suddenly have a series on hand – why not start writing book 2 as well while you’re already in the zone? Or maybe even figure out the whole series?


Skip a day when you need to

It’s extremely difficult to write every day, never mind finding time to write every day. Life happens, so, when you need to skip a day, do it. That doesn’t mean that you should go on a Netflix spree every other day, but it also means that you are allowed to go out with friends and spend time with your family.


Don’t beat yourself up

If you fall behind, don’t beat yourself up about it. Even if you don’t finish writing the 50K, you will still sit with the beginnings of a book that you can continue with, in the following month. This is especially true if something goes wrong during the month that you hadn’t expected. For instance, you can get ill (or your spouse or children) and, of course, if you’re in the US there is Thanksgiving weekend and holidays.


Get involved in some way

However, having people behind you can be a great help to get you to finish your 50K in November. Make some friends on the NaNoWriMo site, get your family and friends to sponsor you, and follow the hashtags on social media.

Keep hydrated and healthy

While having some chocolate as a treat to say ‘job well done’, living on chocolate and coffee for the whole of November is not a good idea. Remember that things like water and veggies exist for a reason.

Good luck!


By Carin Marais

Bibliophile, writer of speculative fiction, non-fiction, and maybe-fiction, language practitioner, doer of stuff.

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