Camp NaNoWriMo: Is It Working?

Phew, I’m over half-way through Camp NaNoWriMo.

So what have I discovered? I tell you after I share my stats from yesterday with you.

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That bull’s eye is very motivating. Each day I see the arrow move a little bit. I almost wish I’d set the target at 80,000 words. Almost. That would mean I’d have a full novel drafted by the end of the month. Wouldn’t that be nice?

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The graph show I had a little slump from day 7 to day 10. What’s my excuse? Too much time socializing with friends who were visiting for the weekend. So a person have to have a social life too. Right?

I’m on track to finish my 50,00o words by July 29th. I’ve got to keep to that. I can’t give myself until July 31st because we have friends coming to stay for the long weekend, and I’m also selling books at a Farmer’s Market on the Saturday. Counting on having time to reach my goal over the final weekend would be a mistake, so I’ve got do have 50,000 words by July 29th.

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I’ve never written to a schedule before. I find it adds a bit of stress to the day. I wake up thinking “what if I can’t find anything to write about today?” So far that hasn’t happened. I’m trying the trick of ending a day of writing with only the first paragraph of the next scene written.

I find it easier to decide what comes next if I’m in the throws of writing. If I start the morning with no plan, I have more trouble getting going, and hence it takes me longer to reach the daily word count.

Anyone else out there doing Camp NaNoWriMo? If you are, let me know if the comments below. I’d love to hear how you’re doing.

Thanks for reading…

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4 thoughts on “Camp NaNoWriMo: Is It Working?

  1. I’m also participating in this month’s CampNaNoWriMo; my project is to revise my 47K-word draft of my novel’s fifth chapter down to a more manageable 24K. I have the first 24K of the draft down to 16K; getting the final 23K down to 8K will be a HUGE challenge, so I’m glad that I scheduled the final two weekends of the month to finish the last third of the revision.

    The value of these monthly writing events comes from learning what it takes to realize your writing ambitions. How many hours a day, days per week can I write? What can I accomplish with that time? What, if any, is the best time of day for me to write? What pre-writing techniques (outlining, diagramming, notes written with pen and paper) provide the best opportunity for success? There’s no way you can answer these critical questions until you commit to a massive project, such as writing/revising tens of thousands of words in a month.

    And from what I can tell from your post, you’re discovering what works best for you. Techniques like ending each day with the first paragraph of the next scene, and looking ahead on your schedule to decide which days simply won’t work for writing — those and other lessons you’ve learned this month will serve you well in the future.

    One last comment on word counts — treat them as motivation, not a measure. Getting to 50k words by July 31 doesn’t mean you “pass,” just as not getting to that mark doesn’t mean you “fail.” If you get to, oh, 47K on the 29th and have reached a natural stopping point, such as the end of a chapter — what’s the point of pushing on? I sense that you already know this, but reinforcement never hurts.

    Good luck as you continue your CampNaNoWriMo project, and I look forward to participating with you in NaNoWriMo this November!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. HI Keigh, It’s interesting that you’re trying to cut words and I’m trying to add them. I do find the word count motivating. It’s new to me, but I like the challenge. It also keep me in the chair, ok on the couch, so I write for longer periods of time. It makes me focus on what I want to say. My hope is that I have this novel finished and self edited before November. I have another novel I want to write in November.

    Camp NaNoWriMo has certainly made me think about my writing process and work more efficiently. Before this, I just wrote.

    Good luck with your project.

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