Congratulations! You made it halfway through November—that is an accomplishment itself. We only have about two more weeks left until the end of NaNoWriMo and that can be a little scary. Right around the middle, our heavy typing begins to slow and our inspiration slowly fades. If you’re experiencing anything like that, you’re not alone. It happens to all of us, so we thought it’d be the perfect time to lend some inspiration to keep that motivation going strong!
Here are some of our favorite tips that will keep you encouraged through the rest of NaNoWriMo.
Create a Writing Schedule
When NaNoWriMo first begins, it’s easy to completely fill our days with writing. We are excited and inspired; we want to get everything out on the page. You may feel unstoppable as words continue to flow onto the page, and you think if I keep writing like this, I’ll meet the word limit within no time. Suddenly you begin to slow down and might even stop writing all together. You exhausted yourself. Don’t worry, it happens to every writer. Our best advice is to create a schedule to keep you on track even when the words aren’t flowing from your fingertips like they used to.
Give yourself an hour a day to write or a specific word count. It will put you into a routine that once established, will become second nature to you. Though it may take some time, just remember to keep writing. Clear room in your schedule to sit down for that hour and write. Hold yourself accountable to keep on writing.
Don’t Forget to Reward Yourself
It’s common for authors to say that they’ll take a break after they get halfway through their novel or when they’re finally done altogether. This can be draining and make writing seem like a chore. A great way to keep yourself motivated is through rewards. They can be as simple as saying once you finish this chapter, you can scoop yourself some ice cream and watch your favorite show. Whatever you find to be a reward, treat yourself to it because you deserve it!
If you’re having a bad day or stuck in writers block, give yourself a goal. That could be taking your time to write 500 words. Once you complete it, treat yourself for writing when maybe you didn’t feel like it. Be your number one fan and support yourself through the writing journey. By giving yourself goals and rewards, no matter how small, you’re more likely to stay motivated.
Focus on Writing
After you finish a chapter or section, it’s easy to get in your head and get distracted by every problem. We want to go back and fix it until it sounds perfect, but that takes a lot of time. Focus on writing; you can always go back and edit later. Keep forging ahead to allow for progress. During the process, you may realize some mistakes or places you want to change. Keep some notes by your desk and write them down—once the draft is complete, you’ll have a list of issues you plan on fixing.
Talk to Writer Friends
If you find yourself uninspired or lacking motivation, connect with some of your writing friends. Go out to lunch or coffee with them and discuss your work. Talk about your story, where you’re stuck, or ask for any tips that they have. Learn about what they’re writing and lend some advice. This can spark inspiration to get back on track again. Use each other to stay motivated.
Don’t have writer friends? A great way to connect with writers is through the NaNoWriMo website. Check out the forums to meet other authors. For professional advice, look at the Pep-Talk section where well-known authors share some encouraging advice to keep you motivated the rest of the month. Each post shares different advice on common struggles authors face during their writing journey.
Remember, you’re your biggest fan. Don’t get too hard on yourself if you don’t hit the word count you wanted, or the chapter didn’t go exactly how you were initially planning. Remember that you’re doing a great job and you’re the only one that writes like you. Take that special flare and utilize it in your writing. Encourage yourself during the great times and in the bad. Positive affirmations can boost your motivation and make you work harder.
Let us know how NaNoWriMo is going for you and how you remain motivated!