Dear Readers, I apologize for being negligent in my posts leading up to NaNoWriMo. Planning a wedding and working on a master’s degree has a way of getting in the way of other things. However, I am gearing up to start NaNoWriMo (in fact, I currently have 1349 words — how about you?). I am going to try my darndest to have posts throughout the month with encouragement for my fellow NaNoWriMo participants (and hopefully buddies, ADD ME! Kellykinns).
Here’s some NaNoWriMo advice to keep in mind as we start this whirlwind of a month:
- Elgin Howell had this advice: “Write everyday no matter what. Also, you have to forgive yourself writing poorly — we are all our own worst critics.”
- Update your word count as often as you need to! I find it helps keep me motivated to update often so I can see progress, especially on days I’m having trouble writing. Write a paragraph; update the word count on the website.
- Don’t be afraid to stray from your original idea or outline. Sometimes the best inspiration happens as you’re writing.
- On days when you’re “on” write as much as you can — don’t stop at 1667 words, create a buffer for days that the going is slow.
- Resist the urge to edit, see Elgin’s advice!
- Don’t stress! If you’re having trouble with the part you’re on now, move on and come back later. Story telling isn’t necessarily linear, and writing certainly has no need for it. Edit the pieces in the right order later.
- Take breaks, and reward yourself! This should be a fun experience. If you’re not having fun, step back and assess why. Are you stuck, worried about something else? Go do something else for awhile, and then come back refreshed.
- Talk to others about your ideas. Friends and other writers can help pump you back up or help you talk through problems you might be having. When I’m stumped or have too many ideas in my head I talk to my best friend (HI MK!) and she gets to be the wall I bounce things off of and helps me reorganize my thoughts (sometimes just by listening and letting me get it all out of my head). Don’t have anyone to talk to? That’s what the NaNoWriMo forums are for!
Do you have any advice you’d like to share with other NaNoWriMo participants? Please share in the comments!
(This article is 411 words… too bad it doesn’t count!)