A few days after the shock of the new year has worn off, and if you haven’t already, it is time to think of what you want to accomplish in 2016.
Here on my blog, we are gearing up for a NaNoWriMo-like challenge in the month of February 2016. We’re calling it NewNoWriMo.
The goal for February 2016 is to capture some of that collective energy so prevalent during National Novel Writing Month and apply it to a month of the year that doesn’t include a major holiday.
Yes, I’m aware that regardless of family obligations during Thanksgiving, many people still find the time to type out 50,000 words. More power to them.
But, for those of us who find November a challenging time of year in and of itself, well then, NewNoWriMo is for you.
How To NewNoWriMo
It it quite simple, really. It’s just a matter of setting a goal for yourself, committing to work towards that goal every single day in February and then following through.
Here are the steps that will set you up for a stellar writing year.
1. Decide what you want to finish in 29 days.
Yes, February 2016 only has 29 days, not 30 like in November. Quit griping. It could have been only 28 days.
29 days is still a lot. If you write a 1,000 words a day, that’ll be about a third of a novel, a very chunky novella, or an excellent series of shorts. In either case, it’s a sizable chunk. But if 1,000 words seems too daunting, go for something more manageable. Maybe 500 words per day is more your speed. Or maybe 2,000 words. Whatever it is you are trying to do, set it down so you have a target to aim at.
In my case, I want to finish the third episode of a series I’m writing about ghosts. The first two episodes came in at 15,000 and 17,000 words, respectively. So my goal for NewNoWriMo is to write another episode of that length. So that’s about 586 words a day. I’ll round that out to 600 words a day just to be on the safe side.
2. Sign up by listing your name and a quantifiable goal…
…in this document (sorry, I’m not a programmer, we’ll have to make do with Google Documents).
You don’t have to do this part. You can secretly participate in NewNoWriMo and bask in your own, lonely glory at the end of the month when you hit 75,000 words. But then you won’t be eligible to win our grand prize.
(Yes, there will be prizes! More details on these later.)
3. Take time now to prepare to write
Each week this month, I’ll post an article I hope will help you prepare for NewNoWriMo. The first will list a few strategies for planning your story. Whether you outline or write from the seat of your pants (pantsters), you’ll need to at least get the core of your story idea down to ensure you don’t falter half-way through February. The second will detail how I’ll manage my time and writing resources during February so that I have a schedule that will help me meet my goals. I hope this will inspire you to schedule in writing time so you too succeed. And they’ll be more posts as we get closer to February 1st.
So, if you haven’t already, subscribe to this blog by hitting the FOLLOW button or signing up by email (both should be available to the right of this text near the top). You can sign up for my newsletter, if you want, but I won’t be announcing any NewNoWriMo activities via my newsletter. It’s all happening on this here blog.
We have 26 days until February. Are you ready to join me for a month of writing?