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Ten Tips for Getting Through NaNoWriMo without Losing Your Mind (Part IV)

3. Remember that this is 50,000 words, minimum. That means that for 30 days, you must write at a pace of approximately 1,667 words per day to stay on task. If you’re feeling slow and/or know that you can catch up on weekends, you could round this down to fifteen hundred or even round up to two thousand, whatever you feel comfortable with. Since you’re going for speed over quality during your first pass with this novel, you could even look at your typing speed for a rough guide as to how long this might take you. This blog post will hit about 300 words and took me about fifteen minutes to write, for example, so if I were trying to hit the magic 1,667 I’d estimate just under an hour for my daily goal. Of course, in practice, novel writing will take you more thought and more effort, especially if you didn’t already brainstorm enough ahead of time. But if you can keep to a pace that has you at the computer for about an hour a day, you could ostensibly get this accomplished without too much pain. Where do you find this magical extra hour a day? Lunch breaks, getting up a little earlier, going to bed a little later, cutting out that rerun of Cheers you watch when you get home. Whatever you do, it can be all in one sitting or in little bursts, but experience has told me that one sitting usually works better for keeping your narrative consistent. Get up an hour early every day and just get it done first thing, if need be. It’s only for a month, after all, and maybe you can use that as your regular daily writing hour from here on out.

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