Living Outside The Box Born-Again Techo-Geek Renaissance Man

2Nov/150

NaNoWriMo: The Journey Begins

For those who aren't aware, November is National Novel Writing Month. What does that mean? It means that thousands of people will be trying to write 50,000 words in 30 days. I'll probably do it, too.

The Bad News: If you need to find motivation to write 50,000 words, then you're going to have a hard time. Chances are if your story isn't just bursting out of your fingertips, you're going to struggle. You're probably going to feel like your story isn't making progress, and you'll feel frustrated if things don't end up the way you imagined.

The Good News: You can still write 50,000 words. It will be a learning experience, and you'll grow from it. You'll find ways to get around writer's block, you'll figure out what works and what doesn't.

If this is your first time attempting NaNoWriMo, then focus on learning to write consistently. That is more important than doing it "right" or making the perfect first novel (a bit of advice: that almost never happens). If you go into it understanding these truths, then your experience will be exactly what it's meant to be: a learning experience.

Once you've plowed through thousands of words, you'll begin to understand the enormity of the undertaking. Yes, it's possible. No, it's not easy. But if you prepare, focus, and work hard, it's doable.

Most people will worry about making a "good story" this month. My advice? Don't. It's probably going to be a cheesy story, or sappy, or something might feel out of place. Don't worry about all that.

Why not? Because people who write awesome novels know it takes time. Rushing through a novel in 30 days might be good for getting something out there, but really, it takes planning and steady work to do it right.

Yesterday was Day 1, and I cranked out about 2500 words. Today, on Day 2, I wrote 2000 words for 2 different blog posts, and will probably write another 2000 for my novel. I'm finally getting my work flow down, to where I can sit and write.

My motivation is now Intrinsic, so external motivators like NaNoWriMo are fun, but they're mostly a distraction for me.

But the important thing is to write! If you're writing intentionally, even only 1000 words a day, it's better than writing for 30 days and doing nothing the rest of the year.

So get writing!

Posted by Jeff Hendricks

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