I did it! I actually wrote 50,000+ words in 30 days. To be exact, I crossed the finish line on day twenty. Best of all, I learned something about myself. If I set a schedule and write on that schedule 3,000 words a day is a cake walk. I can easily surpass that schedule. I have now scheduled time every day to write
In an effort to share the wisdom I have learned from NaNoWriMo, I offer up the following (even though I know others have said this before me):
- Prep before day one. Since I write in the SciFi/fantasy genre, I created my world, named characters, set aside extra character names (you know you’ll need ’em), created the world map, named all the points on the map, named plants and creatures, and did most of my research. I also did a very basic outline – just the high points – and it changed tremendously. That’s all allowed so that on day one, you WRITE.
- Write on a schedule. You can write outside of your schedule as well, but set aside time every day to write and do it. If I can keep up with a day job, family responsibilities (including hosting Thanksgiving for an extended family) and daily stuff that happens, anyone can.
- Don’t get bogged down in editing. I stopped myself from the detailed edit-as-you-go stuff that I normally do and wrote. Don’t misunderstand, I did basic editing but I didn’t word smith. Get the basic plot down and word smith on the second review.
- Don’t be surprised if there are twists you didn’t expect. By Chapter 2 I discovered that I was writing my first ever young adult novel. I hadn’t intended to do so, but there it is. And I’m pleased with the work.
- Enjoy the process and the learning experience. It has been one of the most liberating experiences in my life.