Now that we have all committed to NaNoWriMo 2020, it’s time to start thinking about the next step in our prep work: scheduling.
To state the obvious, writing 50,000 words in a month will take some time. It’s up to you to decide how much time you’re going to dedicate each day to writing, and to make sure your schedule will allow for this.
A good first step is to look at your November and figure out how many days of the month you can feasibly write on. Do you have a day-long family get together for Thanksgiving? Is there a big deadline at work that might take up a bit of your writing time? Take a close look at your calendar, and if there are some appointments you can reschedule, consider doing so. Once you’ve cleared out any non-vital commitments, take stock of how many days you have left, decide how many of those you’re going to write on (some writers work better with rest days!), and start making your schedule.
Personally, I know for a fact I’m going to be taking off one day from writing in November for my birthday (I have a busy schedule of movies to watch and takeout to eat), and there’s a chance I’ll have plans one weekend, so I’ll take those two dates out too. That leaves me with 27 days in which to write 50,000 words – I’ll have to hit an average of 1852 words/day to complete NaNo, which actually doesn’t sound too terrible.
With the big picture scheduling figured out, it’s time to decide when you’re going to write each day. Maybe you’re a morning person and will tackle your words first thing every day. Maybe you’re a night owl, like me, and will stay up until you’ve completed your daily goal. It doesn’t really matter when you get those words in, but it’s important that you set aside that time and commit to getting it done! Write it in your day planner, on your calendar, on a sticky note above your desk… schedule in your writing time the same way you would schedule in a dentist appointment: It’s just as important and much less painful!
If you have any scheduling tips, or want to share your plan of attack for NaNoWriMo 2020, let us know in the comments!