Well, here we are folks: our last regularly-scheduled NaNoPrepMo post for the good month of October. Tomorrow I’ll be posting a round-up for the week, then next week a monthly recap – and we’re done!
I saved the best for last, though, don’t worry. And this is it, the number one tip that will win you NaNoWriMo:
…Okay, it doesn’t look very impressive on its own, so let’s dig in a little deeper.
DON’T EDIT DON’T EDIT DON’T EDIT DON’T EDIT
It’s important to get this straight in your mind. Don’t edit.
Well, what is editing? You might reasonably ask. By editing I do NOT mean:
- simple grammer/typo corrections
- changes you can find+replace (changing a character name from Bozo to Frostie, for example)
- Deleting a sentence because it’s not actually a sentence, it’s just gibberish from your cat stepping on your keyboard
By editing I mean:
- “Is this good enough? Maybe if I tweak it–“
- “Oh, I don’t quite like the way that sounds, it’s very repetitive. I’ll go find a thesaurus–“
- “But will people like this? Who would want to read about [x]?”
That means: NO revising for improvements! NO revising for distractions! NO revising for a future audience!
Right now, this month, today, your job is to get words on the page. Not GOOD words. Not THE BEST words. Not WORD FOR OTHER PEOPLE. Just words. Just words!
Remember: you can’t edit a blank page. You can’t make a masterpiece out of a blank pager, either – you can only do that with a rough draft. So write the rough draft. Get it out: stop letting the pursuit of perfection get in your way. The point of NaNo is not perfection, it is completion. So are you going to complete a manuscript or not?