NaNoWriMo Survival Tips And How To Stay Productive

How To Survive NaNoWriMo

By Lisa Brown

National novel writing month (NaNoWriMo) has become very popular amongst writers, and rightfully so.

The aim is to write a 50,000 manuscript in one month. It is done to motivate writers and challenge themselves.

At first, this task might seem like an impossible one, especially if you have been trying to write your novel for a long time.


Sometimes, all we as people need is a little pressure. To know that you only have one month to write so much is a challenge that many writers complete. Just imagine the thrill you would get after completing this task successfully.

After the Halloween festivities are over, you might notice a lot of people on their laptops typing away.

If you are new to this concept and would like to participate, you are going to need some survival tips.

You might not have time to paraphrase online, but you should be able to get through 50,000 words if you are completely focused on your end goal.

People have used many different tactics that range from no sleep to consuming an incredible amount of coffee.

If you would like to avoid the extremes, but still want to complete this challenge, you might want to use the following tips instead.


One word at a time

The task ahead of you will surely feel like an overwhelming amount of work, but you have to take one bite at a time.

Do not look at the larger picture, but instead, divide your days into smaller achievable goals.

This way, you are not going to become overwhelmed, but instead, you will try and achieve that small goal daily.

Before you know it, you will be halfway through the month and right on track. If you find yourself lagging behind, you might want to squeeze a bit more out of your upcoming days.


Create a space

Choose a space in your home where most of the writing will take place. This is not to say that you cannot go to the coffee shop or the park to write but have a set space.

When you sit down at your desk, everything else around you should not be distracting. You want to make sure that your space is organized and not full of clutter.

It just takes one moment to distract you enough to have a wasted day spent tidying up. You can find paraphrase help online when you are done, but once you sit down, your only focus should be to write.



Schedule time

Time is not going to magically appear in your already busy schedule, so you are going to have to make the time. Do a schedule of when you would be able to fit your writing in and stick to it.

If you can only write for one hour a day, then you are going to have to make that one hour count.

It is important to not deviate from the schedule because one missed day often turns into two and before you know it, you are too far behind to catch up.


Forget editing

We want to be perfect in our writing, but that is what the editing process is for.

There will be time left to edit your work when you are done, but do not make the mistake of wanting to edit as you write.

This is a huge waste of time, and it also distracts you from your creative flow. When you write, just focus on the story and how you want to communicate the message.

Do not worry about that red line under a misspelled word for now. You will find after you read your original draft, that there are a few mistakes.

Once you put your editing hat on, you can focus on that, but for now, just type away and get your word count in for the day.


Don’t overthink

Your characters are going to take on a life of their own as you soon will learn. Do not be afraid to step out of your original plot if that’s where the story leads you.

If your character decided to jump off a cliff, do not stand in the way of a great story.

All writers know that characters do not always listen to our plot ideas and sometimes want to take us on a new journey. Do not overthink anything and just write freely.


Enjoy the process

This is an exciting new opportunity that you are venturing into and you should enjoy every minute of it. Yes, there will be days when you are emotionally and physically exhausted, but always keep the end goal in mind.

There are people who are going to fail because they are overwhelmed, but you need to keep at the back of your mind that this is an exciting process.

You can find paraphrase help quickly, but if you are pondering on it too much, it can be overwhelming.

Do not allow it to turn your life into a miserable few days. If you feel like it is too much, then stop, but only let it go if you do not have the time for it this year.


Join the online community

If you need to vent or ask for help, join the NaNoWriMo community and discuss any issues you might have. You can find useful tips on there to get you through the days when you have no motivation.

Just knowing that you are not the only one out there struggling through the last few words, is enough to keep you pushing forward.



This process is so motivating and has been keeping writers reaching goals for many years. Once you complete this challenge, you will realise that you are capable of so much more as a writer.

You might even ask yourself what you have been doing with your time all along. No one will say that this is an easy task, but the reward for completing it is priceless.



Lisa BrownLisa Brown works as a content manager. She is specialized in writing useful articles for writers, students and people who want to improve their writing skills. Her hobby is reading, travelling and blogging. Lisa`s life motto is “Never stop learning because life never stops teaching”.


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