It’s that time of year again. November is but a week away, which means it’s nearly time for 2020’s National Novel Writing Month. I’ve taken part three times before, in 2015, 2018 and 2019. I’ve only managed the full 50,000 words once, but each time has been a fantastic experience. You don’t, by any means, have to join in with NaNo, but if you’re thinking you might want to here are some of the benefits of taking part.
A target to aim for
Having a target and a goal is a great way to keep you focused and on track. With 50,000 words constituting a win, you have a clear aim to reach for. It’s exciting, going after that goal, and the NaNo website will keep you up to date with graphs and word counts, so you can watch your story grow as you inch closer to the end.
A deadline to encourage you
Your deadline is 30th November. Deadlines are important, as they encourage you to stay on track. You may choose to divide the 50,000 words by 30, with the aim of writing that minimum amount each day. However, if you have any bad writing days or slow writing days, you can always catch up when you’ve got more time.
Motivation and support
Loads of writers take part in National Novel Writing Month, so you won’t be short of motivation and support. You can join teams within the NaNo website as well as connecting via hashtags on social media. Even writers not taking part come out to encourage you, and it creates a huge sense of community within the online writing world.
Getting used to writing regularly builds the habit and hopefully, once November ends, you will maintain a commitment to your work in progress. Habit is as important to writers as writing tools themselves, as it makes you more likely to finish projects and achieve your goals.
Gets you started
Plotting and planning is great, but sometimes you need to just get started. It’s not easy. Stephen King once said, “the scariest moment is always just before you start. After that, things can only get better.” And I must agree. You can plot with great depth, but until you start writing your characters and unravelling their story, you will never truly know them.
Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo this year? Have you before? Share your thoughts below!