Writing a Novel in 30 (or 31) Days
In 2013, I hope to write a novel in 30 days—twice. Not only do I plan on participating in NaNoWriMo in November, but I also plan on writing a novel in 30 days in April. Here are the following tips I will apply to attempt this feat toward the beginning of the year (and at the end):
- Enlist community support. Tell friends and family about your goals. If possible, find a writing forum where you can have others help keep you accountable. Camp NaNoWriMo is also helpful way to write novels during the months of April and June.
- Establish discipline. Nothing is more crucial to success than establishing discipline. Set a daily goal of x words per day, and determine to meet it. I will stick to the NaNoWriMo goal of 1,667 words per day.
- Set benchmarks. This word widget can help you to establish benchmarks of 10 percent, 20 percent, and so on: http://wordmeter.herokuapp.com/picometer/words=0&target=50000. You can adjust the target to suit your goal and change the number of words from 0 to whatever total amount you have written. (Or you can utilize http://www.critiquecircle.com/wordmeterbuilder.asp.)
- Discover good writing music. I listen to classical music when I write. I can’t listen to anything with words lest I begin typing the lyrics in my novel. But if listening to nothing but the sound of traffic outside of your window is best, go for that.
- Have a rough outline of your story. You may not know exactly what your story will consist of—Who does? Sometimes characters surprise us!—but a rough outline can help you stay on track with the general goal of your hero coming out on top.
It is possible to write a novel in 30 days as long as you are dedicated and disciplined—two very difficult things to establish. But once they’ve been established, they pave the way for success.