Friday, July 7, 2017

How to...Keep Moving the Story Forward: a NaNoWriMo article

I talk about it a LOT in this blog. One way I say is to ask "who what when where why and how"? But there's another way to do it and I must confess, I just recently realized what it was I was doing.

The trick is to leave yourself at a cliffhanger. Force yourself to write a cliffhanger before you save and close that file.

"The next morning, we started training and I kept making the same mistake."

There. That's a good cliffhanger sentence to get you started when you have more spark the next day or after a short break.

Also, don't set impossible daily goals for yourself. You know your daily limits and you know how much your life will intervene in your writing. Don't commit to writing 5000 words a day because when you don't, you'll be disappointed in yourself and even feel writersblockitis coming on. Give yourself some leeway. 

Say, you will write at least 150 words and at most 1000 words. If you're on a roll and happen to go over that count? Great :D  If you don't even make 999 words, you still got more than 150 down. You're still awesome! :D

Another pointer is, while you're writing, don't look at the word count. Don't subtract and calculate how much you wrote. You'll just stress yourself out and make yourself think you can't get it up to your goal.

When you open the file, just go to where you left off and start writing. Don't even look at the page count. If you have to, slide that window down so it hides the bottom part behind the computer task bar.

Another trick to keep moving forward during the day is to keep the file open, if you can that is. So, when you wake your computer from sleep, it'll be there waiting for you. Just write a few sentences in and leave it off at another cliffhanger. You might surprise yourself how much you can get done in a day if you do that. Also, coming back to an open file gives you a feeling that you didn't go away for two hours. You can sort of trick your mind into thinking you just took a short two-minute break and just came back to the file screen.

I've found that the act of opening the file makes me wanna sigh and makes me feel writer's block. Avoid that and leave it open.

Let's go over it then. Here are the Tricks to Keep Moving It Forward:

- Leave yourself at a cliffhanger.

- Don't set impossible daily goals.

- Don't look at the word count or page count while you're writing. Hide that sucker if you have to.

- Keep the file open.

Alrighty? Now get to NaNo-ing! :D

Happy CampNaNo :)

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