Tomorrow marks the start of National Novel Writing Month A.K.A. NaNoWriMo 2022 — The month-long challenge to write 50,000 words by the end of November (1,667 words, to be exact)!
I’m here to give you the survival kit you didn’t know you needed to make it out of November not just with your sanity, but feeling stronger, more inspired, and challenged to be the best version of yourself as an author.
Find a writing software you love
Whether you’re looking for a free platform or the most detailed one out there, the internet is stocked full of writing software made for every type of writer. A few great free options are Google Docs, Apple Pages, Microsoft Word, Ulysses, and Evernote. Some programs that are more organized are NovelPro, Chapterly, and Novel Pad. And the software that is made for the Type A and detail-oriented writers that geek out on extensive programs is Milanote and my personal favorite, Scrivener. Whichever software you choose, make sure it suits you, your writing, and your habits — oh, and make sure it auto-saves your draft for those moments we all dread happening actually happen.
Make a NaNoWriMo Spotify playlist… or five!
If you don’t already have multiple writing playlists on your Spotify and you’re somehow managing a productive writing schedule, teach me your ways! Whether they’re premade playlists, ones you’ve created on your own, or collaborative playlists with other writers, find your musical inspiration for early-morning writing, afternoon energy bursts, and late-night sprints to keep you on your game!
Start a new fitness habit
It’s time to start using that gym membership you’ve been paying for or start taking those hot girl walks everyone keeps talking about, because your mind and body will need it. I know it’s a little early for New Year’s Resolutions, but let’s call this a NaNoWriMo Resolution. Starting a new fitness habit is not only a beneficial thing to do for your health, body, mind, and soul, it is going to energize you for the day, help you sleep better at night, give your mind a much-needed break from screen time and storytelling, and give your body a chance to move from that desk chair you once found so comfortable.
Download a meditation app
There are many meditation apps to help you find focus, peace, or motivation at all hours of the day. A few of my favorites are Calm, Headspace, and Balance: Meditation & Sleep. Whichever app you choose, most of them include guided meditations, soundscapes, and even sleep stories to help you catch some much-needed zzz’s to energize your body and ease your mind to focus on what matters most. Your daily word count.
Join the Pinterest family
If you’ve been thinking about joining Pinterest but haven’t taken the leap– now is the time! Not only is it the perfect place to brainstorm and visualize your novel, characters, and plot, it is the best place to find motivation, tips, tricks, and other writers who have either already done, are currently doing, or preparing to do exactly what you are doing now. Consider Pinterest your new Google, but far more personalized, inspiring, and aesthetically pleasing.
Get some noise-canceling headphones
Sometimes we can’t always be working in a quiet, uninterrupted space or sometimes we simply need to change up our atmosphere and work from the nearest coffee shop or co-working space. With that being said, noise-canceling headphones will be your lifesaver and help you focus, stay in the zone, feel as though you’re the only one in the room, and can take on the world. Here are a few of our favorites!
Join a writer’s group
Although you may not even realize it, there are writer’s groups all around you. The official NaNoWriMo website can help you find your local writer’s region, find community forums to join, and connect with local writers to create your own group. You can also find writer’s groups on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to help you feel less alone while on your month-long journey to authorship.
Buy (another) water bottle
We all know there are far too many water bottles sitting in the kitchen cabinet, the car, the office, and on your bedside table, but it’s different this time, this is for a good reason, this is your writing water bottle. I know that when I’m in the zone and writing until my brain can’t form words, I find myself thirsty and grabbing for my water bottle every few paragraphs. So, filling up my small water glass becomes tedious when I find myself writing for hours a day. Getting a water bottle that excites you, motivates you to stay hydrated as you get in the zone, and keeps you from running to and from the kitchen all day and killing your flow, is key to making the next 30 days a success.
Create your ideal writing atmosphere
Whether your ideal space is a noisy coffee shop in the same corner booth, your office burning your favorite Fall candle, or your bed with the windows open, creating a space that feels comforting, relaxing, and inspiring will help you stay focused and on track day after day. Make your environment look motivating, feel invigorating, and smell enjoyable. Find ways to spruce up the space with plants, a vision board, a new blanket, or even move your furry friend’s bed next to you so you’re never alone and can take sanctioned breaks to get slobbery kisses.
As the award-winning author, John Green once said, “Go spit in the face of our inevitable obsolescence and finish your @#$&ng novel.” Best of luck to you!
Need some more support to keep you in line this month? Check out The Best Apps for Every Step of NaNoWriMo.