4 Unconventional Ways to Use National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) by Beth Barany
It’s coming! The writing frenzy known as National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). Being a maverick, I have never used this month the way the founder, Chris Baty, probably intended. But I don’t think he’ll disagree with the fun ways I’ve used NaNo to get writing and move ahead on my book projects.
In 2010, I used November to take care of what had always been a daunting project: sending out query letters. I’d built a partial database of my top 50 agents, but it was old. I’d been already query my fantasy novel and other books for a few years, to no avail. This time I kept track of my querying, 10 minutes one day, 25 minutes another. I used this time to update my query letter, and send it off to at least 1 agent per day. I would also use this time to do some research on that agent or finding new agents.
If you need a kick in the pants about sending your novel out there, use November for querying. Sending out only 1 letter a day makes it manageable. And I like that!
Last year, I used November to finish writing book 2 in my fantasy series. And I made it easy. I write about 1,000 words a day, and finished the novel before Nov. 30th. That feel good.
If you need added support, I know there is at least 1 Facebook group set up to support each on this, calling themselves: National Novel Finished Month or NaNoFiMo. Link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/456870691020878/. Fun! I’m a member1 See you there!
As a follow up, I did get request for partials and full, and even strong interest, but months later, and by then I’m jumped shipped and published my award-winning YA fantasy novel, Henrietta The Dragon Slayer.
Why wait for NaNoEdMo (National Novel Editing Month: link: http://www.nanoedmo.net/xoops_2012/) sometime next year? Use this NaNo time to complete your current work in progress, instead of starting another book.
I advised one of my clients to do this this year. Why add more pressure? I said, “That way you’ll be able to finish your current manuscript. The one an editor is waiting to see!” Added bonus and motivation, right? She sighed in relief when she really took in my suggestion.
This year, I am editing my fantasy novel, book 2 in my Five Kingdoms series. I’m using my Facebook groups and the general focus on November to get clear on a few things:
- What do I want the reading experience of my book to be like for my readers?
- How can I break it into bite-sized daily chunks?
- And what days will I work on the book, really?
I’ve learned from long experience that I like to write in a focused fashion on my current novel 4 days a week. And you know what? That’s okay with me.
As a book coach, I recommend you find the rhythm that works for you and is sustainable. It’s about love our writing: love of story, love of sharing our stories. So experience the love during the process and allow each moment to count and be enjoyable, even in the blocked moments.
What other ways have you used or want to use NaNoWriMo?
Comment below! I’d love to hear what you our cooking up. Share your fun and crazy ideas with us so that we may all benefit from your enthusiams. Or ask for suggestions! I’m here to help!
And that note, I’m offering 10 complimentary coaching sessions in November to people who’ve never had one from me. Sign up for your 60-Minute Complimentary Coaching Discovery Session here.
I’m a novelist AND I help authors create successful books and careers, as a coach and advisor.
If you want personalized, tailored one-on-one support, I can help you with that too.
Contact me for a Discovery Session too see how a writing coach, award-winning author, Certified Creativity Coach and Master NLP Practitioner can help you fall in love with your writing, again.
You can also sign up for my free Writer’s Motivation Mini-Course to the right on this blog or here.