It’s hard to believe the first week of NanoWriMo is behind us already! How are you doing so far? I hope you are enjoying the challenge and that your manuscript is coming along. As you’ve been writing your draft, you may have noticed that it is easy to get distracted or discouraged, but a few simple changes can help you succeed. Here are four things you should never do if you want to finish NaNoWriMo (and maybe even self publish your book someday).
1. Skip a writing session. Unless it is an emergency, you must always stick to your writing schedule. If you must miss a writing session for an important reason, make sure you reschedule it. Ideally, you should reschedule it for another time that day or week. You don’t want to have to play catch up at the end of the challenge because you missed too many writing sessions.
2. Become jealous. Connecting with other writers is a great a way to find encouragement and inspiration during NaNoWriMo, but don’t let their progress discourage you. Some people write faster or have more time to commit. Try not to compare word counts. Focus on your success, and trust that your approach to writing is best for you.
3. Worry about editing. As you write your first draft, it is tempting to think about all the things you need to go back and fix. You should not be worrying about editing right now. You need to focus on writing. There will be plenty of time to worry about editing later. If the thought of editing really discourages you, treat yourself to professional editing services after you achieve your goal.
4. Give up. There will be days when you become frustrated and consider giving up. Don’t do it! You can and will succeed as long as you keep trying. If you need some motivation, talk to people who believe in you, read about other successful authors, or take some time to relax and come back refreshed.
Remember, your goal isn’t just writing 50,000 words this month. Your ultimate goal is to write a novel (and self publish it). That goal takes time, dedication, and possibly hundreds of cups of coffee, but it is an achievable goal. Stay focused and trust yourself, and you will succeed.
I’d love to know, what habits are interfering with your NaNoWriMo goals?