Day 1 of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and I’m already behind, of course. My goal of planning my novel so that I can begin NaNoWriMo today has taken a backseat to stressful life situations, which means I am not at all prepared to begin writing. In previous years, I would have completely given up hope of participating in NaNoWriMo for the year at this point, but this year I will take my own advice and not pressure myself to be perfect and instead will redefine what success looks like for me in 2018.
What does success look like?
My life has been on pause for the past two weeks, and I have no idea where my life will go in the next month, so for 2018, NaNoWriMo success is anything more than 0. If I can complete my planning of my novel in the next month, that would make NaNoWriMo a success for this year. If I can write anything – be it my novel or an article for my blog – that would make NaNoWriMo a success for this year.
What are my goals?
I am setting myself goals that are both realistic and lofty, depending on what happens this month. I am not giving myself too much to do, knowing that I won’t have too much time this month to complete tasks, and knowing that if I set my goals too high, not achieving them would make me less productive. The goals I’m setting myself are also lofty, in that I know I haven’t done anything in the last two weeks, and if that keeps up I won’t accomplish anything this month. But setting myself realistic goals will be good for me not only in participating in NaNoWriMo but also in distracting myself from stressful life situations.
My goals this month are:
- Fully plan out my novel – character studies, plot outlines, etc.
- Edit and publish short story.
- Write two NaNoWriMo update blog articles.
What are my deadlines?
In my previous NaNoWriMo article, I wrote about how setting smaller deadlines to be hit throughout the month would make myself more productive, so I’m breaking down my three large goals into smaller goals with shorter deadlines.
My deadlines for this month:
- Read over all of my notes for my novel and organize my planning – November 4.
- Write down all of my beginning notes for my novel – November 7.
- Re-read short story and plan for editing – November 15.
- First NaNoWriMo update blog article midway through the month – November 16.
- Write all of my character studies for my novel – November 17.
- Write all of my plot outlines for my novel – November 25.
- Edit and prepare to publish short story – November 30.
- Finalize all of my novel planning – November 30.
- Second NaNoWriMo update blog article at the end of the month – December 1.
These deadlines are subject to change, but this is a rough outline of what I intend to accomplish this month.
And hey, if I don’t hit these goals and deadlines, it’s no big deal. I’m not going to pressure myself to be perfect this year, because anything more than 0 is doing alright.