NaNoWriMo Word Sprints -It Might Work For YOU!

Yesterday I set a goal to get more writing done on my NaNoWriMo project. I’m still not at my ideal word count, but I did have some great writing moments.

On the NaNoWriMo site, I saw that on Twitter, there was the official NaNoWriMo handle,  a coach for the week, and NaNoWordSprints. I was curious about the word sprints. I decided to try it out. I figured if it wasn’t working for me I could always stop and go write on my own. In other words I had low expectations.

Well let me tell you, writing with word sprints was a good choice. It reminded me of some of the exercises I had done in writing  class at Story Studio. For some reason, these little exercises do something to my writing. It is like taking a class at the gym. You end up feeling sore the next day because you were using other muscles that you don’t typically work. I love that feeling – both in exercise and writing. In my writing, it opens me up to other ways of approaching the story..

Different people host for various times over at NaNoWordSprints. I encourage you to check it out if you have time. It sounds as though you can drop in anytime (free) and just write. Sometimes there are prompts and other times not. It is timed writing and they urge you to set a word count goal.

The prompt that made me take off like a horse spooked wagon was a song prompt: “I Will Wait for You”, by Mumford and Sons. At first I thought, This will never work. My story is set in the past. I had to think about it for a few minutes. At first I  worried about how this was affecting my word count. Then I had an a-ha moment and almost ripped holes in my paper I was writing so fast. The more I wrote, the more the idea shaped itself in my head. I think I might have the idea for my opening and first chapter.

If you are looking for a writing challenge, try some word sprints. I hope they will be as beneficial for you as they were for me.

Tools to Help During NaNoWriMo

I didn’t get a chance to blog about my writing and word count the last few days. I thought yesterday (Monday) would be a great day to catch up on my lagging word count. I did other things instead. Many of them were writing related and character related, so that is good for the overall story, but bad for increasing the word count. I also came across a helpful tool, from a blog called In his October 17th post, he has created a NaNo calendar that will keep me aware of my numbers. I liked it right away because it works with my old school writing style of writing in a notebook. I had to PRINT a copy on a piece of paper. Now it lives in a pocket in my notebook. If you are an old school writer, this might be helpful to you in your NaNo writing, or if you want to keep track of your daily word count (which some writers do.) According to the blog post, there will be more of these monthly calendars available for regular writing in the future. I know I will stay tuned.

Well, as you can see from my graphics, as of the end of day four, I am very behind in my word count. (Actually it is 2045, but this was the closest graphic I could find.)I am off to fill the lined pages of my notebook. I will blog more this week about what I discovered about characters. Don’t forget to check back.