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  • Writer's picturealaurafilbin

12 November 2020: NaNo Check-In & Tip

NaNoWriMo is nearly halfway over and I’m at 30,000 words! It’s amazing what happens when I don’t have to stress about the election results, right?

In all seriousness, it’s a huge relief to no longer have to wonder who’s going to win the election, as well as to know that the majority of people are not willing to tolerate 45’s tyranny for another four years. Go ahead and take this as your cue to leave if you voted for him! You’re not wanted here if you support the orange fascist or his cabinet!

Anyway, November has been wild and the month isn’t even halfway over yet. If anything, it has made me more determined to reach 50,000 words by the end of the month, just to say that I didn’t let 2020 win. Spite is a fantastic motivator.

Though I have consistently remained ahead of par for NaNo, it took having Veteran’s Day off to catch up for Reverse NaNo, which brings me to my next point: any words are better than none at all. I may not always be hitting the word count goal that I’m personally aiming for, but that doesn’t mean I’ve failed because at least I’m trying. Not everyone can maintain the same levels of productivity throughout the month, let alone throughout the week, and it’s important to not let that discourage you from writing. If the words are coming slower, or if you need to take a day off for self-care, that’s okay. It’s not a failure to take care of yourself instead of writing.

In any case, I do have a little tip for everyone doing NaNo: have a ‘rejected words’ section in your NaNo document! The thing is, not everything you write is going to be a winner, and that’s okay, so rather than delete whatever sentence, paragraph, scene isn’t working, you just move it to the end of the document so that it can still count towards your total word count. Besides, you never know when a ‘rejected’ line can be recycled into your manuscript again. Not only does it allow you to move forward with your story, but you don’t feel as though you’ve wasted your time on words that no longer exist.

It’s all about finding what works for you, and what works for me is remembering that all words are worth counting, even if they don’t survive the manuscript at the end of the month and even if I didn’t reach some arbitrary goal that I can make up later.

Good luck to all my fellow-writers! To any readers, wish me luck on finishing Rory & Boone, even though I started yet another story idea. Seriously, I have a problem.

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