So. Day 11 of Camp NaNoWriMo. How’s it going there?
How’s it going here? Even worse. Let’s just say I didn’t plan enough before Camp started and so am simultaneously planning my rewrite and, well, actually executing it.
But that doesn’t mean it’s time to throw in the towel. We still have 19 days left in NaNo! You can do a lot in that time.
It’s time to refocus your energy, plan out your time, and use your Easter break to catch up on that writing! How do you do that, you say? I’m glad you asked.
- Refocus on your why. This is the entire backbone of your writing life, and without that backbone, you’ll keep meandering along without purpose. Maybe you just want to write the book that you’ve always wanted to read. Maybe you want to make some small difference in the world. Maybe it’s a combination of factors. Look, I don’t care what it is. Just write it down on an index card and tape it to whatever’s right next to where you write. Look at it when the going gets hard, and you’ll remember that this IS a good idea and you CAN and WILL finish your book.
- Examine your goals. What did you originally hope to accomplish, and how far have you progressed towards that goal? If you haven’t progressed, that’s okay. You’re a human, and you’ll make mistakes. But now is the time to recover from the mistakes, instead of wading deeper into an unproductive ‘mud pit’ of procrastination.
- Make a game plan. You know why you want to write, you know what you want to accomplish in this month… now it’s time to get serious. Write down a basic daily schedule for every day from now until the 30th, such as ‘8 am, wake up. 9-12, work. 12-1, lunch break and writing’. You get the picture. Now look at your schedule. How much free time do you have, including the time you spend for watching TV, reading, etc.? You should have at least half an hour a day. This is going to be painful, but drop those other priorities like a hot potato and use every window of time for writing. Take a deep breath, focus on your why, and get to work.
- Pick one or two days for marathon writing. Maybe this is during the weekend. Ruthlessly cut other things from your agenda and pull a 5k, or an 8k, or a 10k weekend. Make it as big or as small as you need (and as you know you can realistically achieve).
- Look for a community. The Camp NaNo cabins work really well for this, but you may already have supportive friends. You’re going to want all the help you can get, and to commiserate with other writers is one of my greatest joys personally.
Take a deep breath! You can achieve your writing goals if you reprioritize and follow these steps.
You’ve got this down, guys. I believe in you. And feel free to comment down below if you need further tips!