Friday, November 2, 2012

Week 1 Pep Talk: Lisa McMann

So you took the big step and decided to try NaNoWriMo. Maybe it’s your first time, maybe it’s your thirteenth. And it’s a big commitment—one you need a lot of motivation to complete. Like choosing to eat healthy, adopt a puppy, or quit smoking, motivation and commitment are keys to your success. And by choosing to do NaNoWriMo, you’ve made the first step.

How awesome is it that you’re not alone? You’re surrounded by others who are as motivated as you are! And you’re excited, right? All those ideas whirling around your head faster than you can get them down on paper. You can do this! You’re actually DOING THIS! Look at you go!

One of the hardest parts of writing a novel is finding uninterrupted time each day so you can actually get the words on the page while the excitement is still there. This is a time for you to be a little selfish. Lean on friends or family to cover some of the things you normally do. Say no to extra commitments and block off time on your calendar for writing. And cancel or postpone some of the usual commitments you’ve made this first week so you can write while your motivation is strong. If you get stuck, get your butt outside and take a walk. It’s a great way to stimulate your mind and work out the problems you might be running into. Just because you’re not typing constantly doesn’t mean you’re not writing the story in your mind.

The more you can get written this first week, the more invested you will become in your novel, and the easier it will be to continue into next week. Ride the high as long as you can, and don’t forget to enjoy this exhilaration – you’re doing something most people only dream of doing. Think big, write fast, and don’t worry about the mistakes right now. You will have plenty of time to fix them after November. You can do this! I know you can. And I hope you love every minute of it.

Lisa McMann is the New York Times bestselling author of the Wake trilogy (Wake, Fade and Gone), Dead to You, Cryer’s Cross, and the middle-grade dystopian fantasy series The Unwanteds. Watch for her new YA Visions series beginning with CRASH on January 8, 2013. Find Lisa on Facebook or follow her on Twitter.

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