How Can I Possibly Write a Novel in 30 Days?
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You are reading page #3 of EelKat's Guide to NaNoWriMo. If you have just starting reading this, please go back to Page 1 to read this entire 40 page article from it's beginning.
Write 1,667 Words A Day
Write 1667 words a day. This can not be over stressed enough. In order to reach 50,000 in 30 days you must write a bare minimum of 1,667 word per day. You can (and should) write more than that per day, but whatever you do: DO NOT WRITE LESS!
Write EVERY DAY!
This is even more important than writing 1,667 word per day: WRITE EVERY DAY!
This can not be stressed enough. Writing every day is the true secret to winning NaNoWriMo. Not writing every day is the #1 reason why 65,000 people failed to reach 50k last year.
They wrote a bunch on day one.
Wrote a little bit less on day two.
Skipped day three thinking "I'll write double tomorrow."
Skipped day four thinking: "Well it's only two days that I missed and I still have the rest of the month to finish."
Day 20 came along and they still had only written 10k and now had 40k left to write in 10 days: That's 4,000 words a day.
I have no problems writing 4,000 words a day, I can easily write 10,000 a day. But you know why I can do that? Because I've been writing for 27 years, and I write every day, and the more days you write, the easier it becomes to write and in the end the more words you write per day!
For someone new to writing though, it's pretty hard to reach 1,000 words a day, and that is why writing EVERY DAY is so very, very, VERY important.
Write every day, even if you're ahead.
It is a common folly to start out writing 3,000 - 5,000 words the first day. Not that writing 3,000 - 5,000 words in one day is a folly, it's pretty good, and you should go right ahead and do it. The folly of this is that many newbies look at that and say: "That's 3 days worth of writing, I can take a break tomorrow."
Tomorrow comes and goes. Than so does the next day. And the next. And than Thanksgiving rolled around and you realize, you have 4 days left to write and now you are really in a bind.
Writing a bunch each day for the first few days is good, but never let that be a reason why you skip a day of writing. Getting ahead is easy, falling behind is even easier, and catching up once you've fallen behind is pretty hard. So, write every day, even if you're ahead.
Write every day, even if you don't feel like it
Write every day, even if you don't feel like it.
Every writer has a day when they wake up a say:"I don't feel like writing today." But you know what, if you are a career writer; a writer who writes as a career, you can't do that.
Well, how many times have you woken up and wished you didn't have to go to work? But did you call your boss and tell him: "I'm sleeping in today, sorry, I'll come to work tomorrow." No, you didn't, because you'd have been fired. You got up and you went to work anyways, because that's what you have to do.
Writing is the same thing. You don't write, you don't get paid. You can not take a day off from work, even when you work at home as a writer.
The same thing goes for NaNoWriMo. You don't work, you don't win. You got to work at it every day to win.
Write every day, even if you REALLY don't feel like it.
No, you have NOT reached the end of this article! What you have reached is the end of what it currently online. The rest is coming, hopefully it'll be on here in a day or three so keep checking back. I will remove this message at the same time I put the rest of it online.
As my long time readers will already
know a server crash took down most of the old free-hosted site on June
4, 2013 (which was online since 1997 and had reached 6,000+ pages).
Thankfully everything was saved on a separate hard-drive and the site is
being rebuilt with a new host and for the first time on it's own
I am currently
moving all 6,000 questions&answer articles to this site one page at a
time, at a rate of about 4 to 7 new pages being added each day, so be
patient. Not all links are yet clickable. This process started on
September 2, 2013 and will be ongoing at least through to January 2014.
(And it may be well into 2017 before all 6,000 pages will be back online
if I continue at this rate of 5 a day.)
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UPDATE: November 2015: The page you are on now, was written in 2007 and updated every November until 2014 - It was last updated October 31, 2014 and there are no future updates planned for it, as after 10 years of doing it, I have retired from "traditional" NaNoWriMo and am now doing a different writing goal each November.
For the current NaNoWriMo 2015 update see THIS PAGE (which includes the first public release of my Dares Generator and information on how I use it to reach 50,000 words in 3 days instead of 30 days, along with info on how I reached 537,000 words in 2013 and thus changed my writing goals for NaNoWriMo.)
UPDATE: October 31, 2014 -
Due to a major hacking of my online accounts, and the theft and plagiarism of some 1,371 of my how-to articles for writers, I am now removing from public access MOST of my How To Guides for writers. They will return at a future date, but henceforth they will not be available for free. I'm tired of shit-head thieves stealing my work and passing it off as theirs. I'm sorry, to those of you who were not creeps and trolls, I know it's not fair to you, but, the hacking was done by a local person did a lot more damage than you know - the vandalism to my house and cars and the murders of my pets and death threats to my family, are not something I take lightly.
Until we can get to the bottom of this and get this jackass stalker out of my life, I am simply not able to leave my articles online, due to the court case that is now brewing over this. I am also leaving NaNoWriMo, because the local NaNoWriMo ML Kendra Silvermander is the cousin of the man doing the harassment, stalking, vandalism (which included blowing up my house with a grease fryer bomb) and has been not only stealing my how to guides and posting them on the NaNoWriMo forums as her own, but also shows up at local restaurants to threaten me and my family while we are trying to eat. I am utterly disgusted that NaNoWriMo allows a filthy, thieving, vandalizing, scum bag like this to continue to year after year, inciting anti-EelKat riot threads on the NaNoWriMo forum, while continuing to allow her to steal my articles off my web site and post them to NaNoWriMo's website as hers.
This article you are reading now, is one of the few, I have not taken down, it is however drastically shorted. My mega long 20,000 word how to articles are ALL removed now, with only and the ones that remain are stripped of most of the info, with only the barest minimum required to answer the reader question - in many cases the articles are 90% shorter then when they originally appeared, most now under 2,000 words instead of their 20,000 word originals.
Complete Index of
EelKat's Guide to NaNoWriMo
(Including The ORIGINAL 13 Steps To Writing Method)
MANY of these pages are changed to private viewing only now, and or have had most or all of the original content removed - see note above for reason why.
- EelKat's Guide To NaNoWriMo
- Why Write 50,000 Words In 30 Days?
- How Can I Possibly Write a Novel in 30 Days?
- Don't Quit!
- How long does it take to hit 1667 words? and 50k in one day - is it possible?
- Write Now - Edit Later
- Write it YOUR Way!
- What Is Word Padding?
- Word Padding & Why You Should Never Do It!
- More ways to write fast without word padding . . .
- After NaNoWriMo - Writing to Publish
- What I Did In 2006 - Reaching 50,000 using The 13 Step Method to Writing
- The Secret to Reaching Word Count Goals Without Using Word Padding - What I Did During National Novel Writing Month 2007
- NaNoWriMo 2008: 50k in 3 Days!
- Writing Tip: Have Fun!
- But, I want to finish a book I already started . . .
- Does writing a bunch of short stories count for National Novel Writing Month?
- Write What YOU Want To Write!
- Accepting Your Writing Style
- Writing Advice Doesn't Always Work
- What do You Look For in a Book?
- Creating Character Profiles
- Where Do You Get Your Ideas?
- What Genre is My Vampire Story?
- What Genre is My Mermaid Story?
- Does What You Read Effect What You Decide To Write? or What's on My Bookshelf . . .
- WHERE Should I write? Where do you feel you write more?
- Create Your Own Writer's Retreat
- I Want to Keep Writing December and Beyond: JaNoWriMo, FebNoWriMo, SeptNoWriMo, OctNoWriMo . . . ???
- Script Frenzy
- Narration for Writers
- Novel? Novella? Short Story? How Do I Know What Am I Writing?
- ABCs of Writing
- How to Become a Writer
- Are You a Renegade Writer?
- Creating a Fantasy World
- After NaNoWriMo: Editing your draft into a manuscript
- After National Novel Writing Month: Marketing Your Book
- After NaNoWriMo: Home Office, Town Zoning, and IRS Oh My! The Business Side of Being an Author
- My NaNoWriMo Journey: The answer the the oft asked question "So what exactly did you write during National Novel Writing Month?"
- How Long is 50,000 Words?
- Cliches To Avoid When Writing a Story
- What are the Benefits of NaNoWriMo?
- Is NaNoWriMo About Quantity Over Quality?
- How Do You Pick Which Story to Write?
- You too can NaNoWriMo like a pro
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