7 Ways To Renew Your NaNoWriMo Enthusiasm Halfway Through
In the weeks leading up to National Novel Writing Month, it’s easy to say you’ll write 50,000 words in a month — but actually doing it is, of course, a whole lot harder. Like most things in life, NaNoWriMo has its highs and lows, and some days, writing any words feels impossible, let alone the 1,667 needed to stay on track. No matter if you're a NaNoWriMo veteran or a newbie, the momentum you start out with can quickly slow and then stall completely, especially if you’ve already fallen behind. If you find yourself in that situation, though, you shouldn’t despair. Believe it or not, you can re-energize yourself to keep on typing.
I’ll admit that right now I’m way behind the word count target. Do I like it? No, but I’m not giving up. Last year, I spent the middle two-and-a-half weeks of November trailing by around 12,000 words, only summoning the energy for the push I needed in the final days. It takes a lot of time and mental effort, but it’s honestly worth it when reflect back on what you’ve managed to accomplish.
For those of you in need of a NaNoWriMo pick-me-up, here are eight ways you can motivate yourself to write more, right now:
1. Reiterate Your Goals
I won’t lie and say there isn’t something satisfying about hitting the 50,000-word mark and collecting the virtual winner’s badge. Still, NaNoWriMo is valuable whether or not you win. Think about why you decided to undertake the writing marathon. Sure, coming out the other side with a novel was probably a big part of it, but you likely had other reasons. The exercise isn’t just about word count; it’s about getting in the habit of writing and putting your ideas on paper (or screen). Focus on those goals, not the number of words on your page.
2. Read An Author Who Inspires You
If you can, squeeze in time to read work from an author (or authors) you love. It might not only help you overcome aspects you’re struggling with, such as how to deal with time, which narrative voice to use, etc., you’ll be reminded of why you want to write in the first place.
3. Make Yourself Accountable
Share with family, friends, social network, or whomever that you’re doing NaNoWriMo. Once you’ve announced your objective, you’ll likely feel more committed to actually accomplishing it. You’d be surprised by how motiving that sense of obligation can be.
4. Plan A Writer’s Retreat
Sometimes a change of scenery can work wonders. It’s not too late to schedule a weekend away — either alone or with WriMo friends — so that you can focus exclusively on your writing for a couple of days. If you don’t have room in your budget for an impromptu getaway, consider a staycation or convince a friend to house-swap with you.
5. Revamp Your Workspace
Make your workspace a little more pleasant to be in by giving it some new touches to inspire productivity. Bring in some flowers, re-position your desk, or display a new picture next to your computer. I don’t know if it’s feng shui or what, but it really does help.
6. Switch Up Your Playlist
Putting together a new playlist can provide fresh inspiration. You can either think about what you’re trying to capture in your story and choose songs that are in line with that vision, or you can choose songs without rhyme or reason and see where they take you. Both methods can be helpful.
7. Take Advantage Of NaNoWriMo Pep Talks And Resources
The people behind NaNaWriMo know just how hard the task is, so they make sure to dole out much-needed wisdom, inspiration, and support along the way. Use it. You can get pep talks emailed to you or join communities on social media. Plus, who better to get advice from than authors and WriMos who went on to be published?
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