If you are an aspiring writer, you probably know what the Nanowrimo challenge is. If this is the first time you hear the word, this article isn't for you, as it aims to offer a series of tips for those writers who have decided to give this challenge a go this year.
All participants need to write a 10,000 words text in order to be considered for the competition. You may think this is an easy task, but if you've ever tried your hand at writing, you know a novel is not such an easy thing to create. You have to define your characters very well, with their personality traits, habits and particularities. You need to draw your plot and make sure it is powerful enough to make people read your book to the end. You need to be able to describe situations, people and places in a captivating manner, so that readers are charmed by your style.
When writing for Nanowrimo, it's good to have a clear plan to start with. You need to calculate how many words you have to write each day in order to be able to finish your work in due time. This is how you can avoid becoming overwhelmed with the number of words you have to write by the end of the challenge. If you stick to your writing schedule, you are going to be able to save your forces and stay calm to the end.
You need to plan your novel in detail before you actually start writing it. It's much easier to know from the beginning how many chapters your book is going to have and how they are structured. The best way to start your work is by writing an outline of the entire novel. It is going to help you progress and keep track of the amount of work you've achieved every day. In addition, it can serve as a brief description you can publish on the cover of your book in order to entice the readers to buy it. This is what most professional writers do anyway, so there's no reason for not doing it yourself, too.
If you get the writer's block, you should probably take one or two days off and go for some nice, long walks in the nature - a proven way to think more creatively - or get a cheap road bike and take a ride to clear your head. Take a short vacation, relax and allow your brain to rest a little. Get physical because it is proven that exercise helps clear the brain - so do a run on the treadmill or a few sessions on the rowing machine to clear the head. Have a notebook and a pen with you at all times and write down all ideas that go through your mind during the day. You may find some golden nuggets to help you overcome the writer's block and become prolific again.
In the first stage, don't worry about proof-reading your novel. Save a few days at the end of the challenge to do the editing and proof-reading work. However, if you feel like reading again some chapters in order to cut or add stuff, feel free to do it. The best way to write is the one you are the most comfortable with. This is why you should ignore all advice that doesn't suit you, and follow your intuition.