December is upon us and that month when writers everywhere hide in their homes, refuse requests to meet up with non-writer friends, and seek out refuge in coffee shops is finally over.
If you’re like the thousands of writers who do NaNoWriMo each year, you’ll either be celebrating your 50k words (or more) or wondering what went wrong.
Writing a novel in a month isn’t easy. A lot of people doing NaNoWriMo are doing this for the first time, and writing your first book is something it’s hard to rush.
It took me fifteen years to write my first novel. Yes, fifteen years.
OK, so I took some looooong breaks during that 15 years. 8 years to have kids, for example, despite the fact that actually giving birth to them only took two days in total (I’m such a lightweight). But it’s still something that takes time. Because when you write your first book, you’re still learning how to do it.
Which is why I believe that the best thing to do once you’ve written your first book is to write your second book. It’ll help you consolidate what you learned from writing the first one, and make you a much better writer.
But anyway, back to the matter at hand.
Did you win NaNoWriMo? Did you manage to write 50k words in November?
I only did it by the skin of my teeth, hitting 50k at 5pm on 30 November. I had a busy month: I went to Las Vegas for the 20books conference and then spent a week jet lagged. And I almost ran over by a day, mistakenly believing there to be 31 days in November (wishful thinking?) and realizing at the last minute that I had to finish on Saturday and not Sunday.
(Go on. Put your hand up if you made the same mistake. I won’t tell.)
If you want to write even more words next time, or if you didn’t quite make it and you want to do better next year, I can help. If you’ve been inspired to become a more productive writer and want to know how to do that, I can help.
How’s that, then?
I strongly believe that using data can help you become a more productive writer. By tracking your activity, you can analyze when and where you write fastest (and best), and use that information to help you write more words in less time. Without sacrificing quality.
Giving you more time for marketing your books – or for having a life.
(What’s one of those?)
My post on using data to be a more productive writer for the Alliance of Independent Authors will show you how.
- How to analyze your working habits.
- How to track your writing productivity.
- How to use that data to become more productive.
It’s too late for me to help you with NaNoWriMo this year, but November isn’t the only month for writing. And none of us will become full time authors by only writing for one month a year.
I hope you find it useful.