June 25, 2020 by Sarra Cannon
Anyone else feeling like they need a little bit of writing joy in their lives right now?
I know that I personally can feel like what’s going on in the world is so important, I need to be plugged in 24/7. Unfortunately, what that ends up doing is draining me and making me suuuuper stressed and cranky and scared.
What I came to realize after some soul-searching and a ridiculously difficult weekend is that I need to carve out some time for joy and creativity in my life so that when I show up to the important discussions online, I’m showing up with a clear and rested mind.
Writing can truly be such a source of joy, so I was determined to shift my energy back to that and focus on the fun of my story.
I have found in the past that making a specific plan that includes every detail of how I plan to accomplish my goal is the best way to hold myself accountable.
To set my goal, I’ve taken into account how many words I’ll write and how many days I need to take off throughout the month. Knowing I want to take Sundays off means I can write on 26 out of 31 days in July. However, I know I’ll also plan to take my husband’s birthday off entirely to be with him
That leaves 25 writing days in July when I’ll write 2,000 words per day. My goal, then, is 50,000 words.
I also find it helpful to know when I’m going to write during the day. Otherwise, I tend to make it to the end of the day wondering where the time went and having to squeeze in my writing when I’m already worn out.
Since I want to write 2,000 words per day, I know I’ll need to set aside a realistic amount of time to get it done. Since I already know I enjoy writing in chunks of 25 minute sprints using the Pomodoro method, I will use that as a my baseline.
The rest is just math. First, I need to think about how many words I can realistically write in a 25 minute sprint. I know from experience that I can do 1,000 words in 25 minutes if the stars align and the story is flowing.
To expect myself to always be at my best, though, is setting myself up for failure right from the start. I want to build positive momentum and make it easy to succeed, rather than push myself to the limit. Especially right now! Mental health is a huge part of writing success!
For this reason, I’ll aim for an average of 500 words per sprint. Since I have a daily goal of 2,000 words, that means I’ll need 4 writing sprints to hit my daily goal. Since each sprint is 25 minute, I have to set aside 2 hours of writing.
I’ve decided to set aside time from 10 am to 12 pm each day for writing sprints.
The final thing to think about is where I plan to write. Having this in place helps me feel committed to the project. I plan to write on my computer in my gaming space upstairs.
So, basically, my plan to win Camp this July is as follows:
Are you planning to participate in Camp NaNoWrimo this July? If so, let me know your goal and what you’ll be working on!
Don’t forget to join us in the Writing Sprints group on Facebook for a little bit of extra support!
Also, if you want to see the storyboard I created and follow my progress of setting it up, watch today’s video and come follow my stories on Facebook or Instagram! See you there!
By the way, you can sign up for NaNoWriMo’s website and start your Camp project here.
Subscribe now to download this Writing Plan and Scheduling page. Set deadlines and track your progress as you write your novel!
If you're anything like me, you constantly feel behind and yet, you continue to procrastinate! Looking ahead, setting goal dates, and keeping track of your schedule as you write is one way to stay motivated and on target.
I have been self-publishing my books since 2010, and in that time, I've sold well over half a million copies of my books. I'm not a superstar or a huge bestseller, but I have built an amazing career that brings me great joy. Here at Heart Breathings, I hope to help you find that same level of success. Let's do this.
My first email to you. I understand why new authors seek NaNoWriMo to motivate themselves, but you have already written many novels. Isn’t it simpler for you to work with a trusted small group of beta readers and focus on thinking up ideas on your own? Sorry if this question has already been answered in one of your videos.
Hi James! Thanks for your comment! I don’t use NaNo to crowdsource ideas or get any input for my ideas. I simply use it as a motivator to get my butt in the chair and get writing. Often, it’s really helpful to have other people to sprint with, discuss what it’s like to tell stories and write books, and simply feel like you’re a part of something instead of typing alone at home!