In Tips, Writing on
October 29, 2017

5 Weird NaNoWriMo Word Count Tricks that WORK (Believe Me, I’ve Tried Them)

If you have known me for any small amount of time, you know that I write. It’s just who I am. So naturally, writing 50,000 words in one month for NaNoWriMo (AKA National Novel Writing Month) seems like a heck of a lot of fun and I’m all in. This will be my 4th year participating. At the end of this post I’ll also share where you watch my new NaNoWriMo webinar series, so stay tuned.

In these 4 years, I’ve come up with some funny word count tricks to help get more writing time in during the day. You are going to LAUGH but also love these hacks at the same time.

How to Exceed Your NaNoWriMo Word Count Every Day

  1. The “Bathroom Break” – During NaNoWriMo, every time you have to go to the bathroom tell yourself you can’t get your ass off the toilet until you have written 3 sentences. Now come on, don’t pretend you don’t use your phone in the bathroom. With how often we go to the bathroom in the day, this is a quick way to get more writing in.
  2. Add in a “Toddler Moment” – Everyone has tantrums every once in awhile, your characters do too. Sprinkle in at least one of these unreasonable tantrums throughout your novel to show your character’s pet peeves, fears, and how they act when they are hangry.
  3. The “Commercial Break” Workout – Similar to tip 1, don’t waste your time! Everyone needs a TV break every now and again, but don’t let it make you into a writing sloth. During commercial breaks, do word sprints. And if you are Netflix binging? Pause half way through an episode, write for ten minutes, watch the other half, write for another ten minutes, then start the cycle again.
  4. Bribe Yourself – Met that word count goal during your last sprint? COFFEE BREAK! Did double the amount of words you did yesterday? TARGET RUN! You get the idea. The key though, if you don’t meet your goal – no coffee or Target for you. Keep yourself accountable!
  5. Art Mimics Life – As you move through the month, keep a notebook or section in your phone to write down the mundane things we need to do all the time, as well as life’s surprises (hello, flat tire).  Then, challenge yourself to incorporate these real-life scenarios into your novel to aid the plot. Maybe the protagonist meets their true love by helping them with their car troubles. Having these background pieces add realism to your story and fluff your word count.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, are a few tips that help me reach my writing goals during NaNoWriMo. What NaNoWriMo tips do you have? Share them in the comments.

BUT WAIT, DO THIS FIRST – If you want to know my 5 NaNoWriMo Success Principles, check out my new Skillshare course. With this referral link you get a two months membership for free, so you can take my under 30 minute class and dozens of others before your free trial closes. Afterward, it’s only $10 a month. I’ve already taken three classes this week and love it.

NaNoWriMo Tips and Tricks

What does the class cover? The exact formula to winning NaNoWriMo, based on the patterns I’ve noticed when I’ve both won and lost the challenge over the past few years. Check it out and make sure to rate the course with what you liked and didn’t, I’d appreciate the feedback.

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