This week, I signed up for Camp NaNo.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, Camp NaNo is an offshoot of NaNoWriMo, the (inter)National Novel Writing Month, which kicks off each November. The idea is that you write a novel in thirty days, with the target being 50,000 words.
Camp NaNo is much the same, only it’s in June and/or August. Again, they want you to write a novel from scratch during whichever month you choose to take part. As for me, well while I’m going to try my hardest to hit the 50K in June, I’ll be bending the rules somewhat. Instead of starting from scratch, I’ll be aiming to get 50,000 words written of my WIP. Currently my word count sits at about 62,000, so that will get me up above 110K, but then again with editing and the like I’m sure to drop that back to the 85K I’m aiming for for the final draft.
So, why am I doing it? The main reason is that my maternity leave is quickly running out, and my self-imposed deadline to get this story finished is when I go back to work at the start of August. I’m up for anything that will give me a boost in doing this (like the chapter-writing competition I spoke about the other week) so, when another writing buddy asked me if I was doing Camp NaNo, I said yes. I hadn’t even thought about it up to that point, but like I said, I might as well give it a go. I’ve had luck with NaNo in the two years I’ve done it, in that I’ve reached the 50K mark each time, so if I can get motivated each November to do that, then why not June?
NaNo works for me because there’s something really motivating about putting your word count in each day and seeing whether you’re on track or not, and I really strive to get above the red line and stay there. It’s the tracking process that I like. However, I’m aware that this doesn’t necessarily work for everyone so, on the off chance that I don’t get my word count up over June (and therefore get the novel so much closer to being finished), I’m asking what you do.
If you want to get inspired to do a lot of writing in a short time, how do you do it? Do you rely on external factors like I do (NaNo, writing contests with other writers), or are you able to find something from within? And how successful are you? I’d really love to know.