Has anyone signed up for NaNoWriMo yet (National Novel Writing Month)? For those of you who don’t know, this is where writers set themselves the challenge of writing 50,000 words of their novel during the month of November. (That’s an average of 1,667 words a day.)
If you’re not used to writing big projects, this can be a great way to get started. Your aim is just to get 50,000 words written. They don’t have to be great words. They’re not perfect words. In fact, you’re not supposed to do any editing at this stage. Just write 50,000 words. At least.
But that’s quite a challenge: not only are you committing yourself to a big idea (which you hope is big enough to sustain you for at least 50,000 words during November, and then another 20-30,000 words for the rest of the novel), but you’re also committing yourself to writing on a regular basis. Ideally, daily. For some people, especially those not used to writing something every day, NaNoWriMo is two challenges: writing every day and writing 50,000 words.
Which is where my OctoWriMo idea comes in. It’s not about a particular writing project, as such. Or writing as many words as you can. It’s simply about sitting down and writing something EVERY DAY. It’s about creating that daily writing habit.
It can take up to 28 days to form and habit and as today is 3rd October, there are 28 days until 1st November and the start of NaNoWriMo, if you take action tomorrow.
So why not make NaNoWriMo a little easier this year by tackling OctoWriMo? Make October a month of writing. Anything. It doesn’t matter what. Just write. Something. Every day.
Don’t give yourself a word count target. That’s not the point of the exercise. The task is to make sitting down somewhere and doing some writing a daily habit. A habit that will put you in good stead for November. Do that and you’re half way to achieving NaNoWriMo. Then all you need to do is to come up with a good idea for your novel. Easy. See?