Last week, I offered on my author’s blog an assessment of the first days of my Nano 2022. As I had somewhat anticipated, I am having a hard time this year moving forward with the writing of my Nano and getting involved emotionally… Faced with these difficulties, I decided to offer you an article based on my thoughts and my solutions in the hope that it will help you get through it if you too encounter these difficulties!
BEFORE YOU START
In this article, you will find solutions and alternatives for each difficulty you may encounter. However, it is difficult to find solutions if you do not know the exact difficulties you are encountering! (Yes, it’s a bit like the snake biting its tail! )
Also, the first step is to put down on paper the difficulties you encounter. What are they? Writing them down and thinking about them will help you better understand them and find answers!
Here is a list of difficulties that can block you:
- Lack of time
- Lack of motivation and desire
- Lack of inspiration
- Lack of organization
- Lack of confidence
You have others? Tell me in the comments which ones!
DIFFICULTY #1: LACK OF TIME
First difficulty you may encounter: lack of time! It’s quite simple: you can’t sit down to write because of all the demands that revolve around you! Not to mention that to write 1667 words per day, you still have to stop for about an hour!
Lack of time is not always a lack of time… it is possible that you have, in your day, 1 hour breaks during which you want to do everything, except write… in this case, your difficulty is seeming more like a lack of motivation or a lack of organization than a lack of time! I’m taking the liberty of writing it because I felt like I was facing a lack of time this year, but I have time, I have real slots that I can devote to writing… my difficulty lies more in the fact that I can’t take advantage of these slots because I’m tired / not motivated / not inspired!
Generally speaking, the idea is that if you don’t have time to write that’s why we offer famous ebook Ghostwriting Services, you shouldn’t wait for the perfect time to write. It certainly won’t happen. At least not in the way you dream.
- Slowdown in your professional life: if you tend to give a lot to your work, try to see if it is not possible to leave an hour earlier, arrive an hour later or even take an extra hour of lunch. This is not necessarily possible and it depends on your professional activity, but sometimes we are our own brakes!
- Agree to put your social life on pause: if it is difficult for you to put your professional life on pause, you may be able to slow down your social life. Refusing invitations, replacing a coffee meeting with an hour of solo writing or even changing your habits as a couple for a month: these little things are possible and can free up some time. Remember: it’s only for a month!
- Having your children looked after: if you have children, a solution may be to have them looked after by your other half, by someone in your family and/or by your usual babysitter. It’s an additional organization for your children and your family, but it could help you gain a few hours of saving writing time for your Nano count!
- Get up earlier / go to bed later: scrounging writing time from your sleeping time is often the alternative that can work! I admit to having a little difficulty setting it up for my part but it is a solution that could work for you.
- Spend time on your waiting times: a day is made up of unexpected breaks. Queuing at the supermarket/doctor’s office, taking transport… all of this time can be used to write. However, this requires being well organized to always have a writing tool at hand!
Faced with a lack of time that prevents you from fully considering writing or at least an hour or more of writing per day this November, it may also be time to accept that you don’t have time to devote to writing this month. Significant upheaval in your personal or professional life, illness… there are many reasons for being stuck and do not necessarily depend on your will!
- Do your best: try to write
- Give yourself the challenge of doing Nano again during another more auspicious month. The months of April and July offer Nano camps if you want to take advantage of Nano emulation and you can completely have a Nano in your area, at any time of the year!
DIFFICULTY #2: LACK OF MOTIVATION AND DESIRE
It’s clearly the shortcomings that are blocking me during this edition of Nano – with the lack of confidence not helping, we’ll talk about it later. How to overcome them? How can you force yourself to write when you feel a lack of motivation and desire?
- Change projects: having a plan B, a side project, is a good solution when you feel tired of your first project! What if you wrote something that makes you want to? Another text, articles for your site or even Instagram posts? With any luck, the desire to write will return!
- Skipping passages, writing out of order: this is another solution that works well. If you are progressing on a fictional text, you may come across a softer passage in your plot that bores you… Spoiler: you will certainly have to modify it in the long term because a passage that bores you will certainly bore you your readership… but we’re not there yet and for the moment, you’re stuck! What if you skipped this complicated passage to go to a moment in your plot that makes you more excited? Writing out of order is a tactic that many authors use!
- Find what is blocking you in your project: for my part, the lack of motivation that I feel comes both from a lack of inspiration (I am blocked in the plot of my text because I do not have enough in-depth…) and a lack of confidence (I feel like I’m not writing anything interesting…). But your lack of motivation can also come from your fatigue or your feeling of running after time! Faced with these shortcomings, read the rest of the solutions that I offer you in this article!
DIFFICULTY #3: LACK OF INSPIRATION
For many authors, ideas flow and they have to sort through the mass of information that their prolific brain sends them. For me it’s different. An idea for a novel comes from a micro idea (often from a “What if?”) and I have to gradually pull the thread of my mind to knit a plot and a novel. But the crux quickly arrived and I can easily get stuck in the face of a lack of inspiration if I haven’t taken the time to plan my text well…
In a different but equally blocking situation, you may also find yourself with an influx of ideas but an inability to organize them and turn them into a story. The words get stuck and you find yourself with the fear of the blank page even though the story is there…
Solutions to an interstellar void
- Planning: take the time to create your characters, develop your plot with a method like the snowflake method, create a detailed plan
- Writing a work synopsis and counting it in words: this is the solution I decided to adopt. Faced with the desire to write while being blocked by a lack of ideas and inspiration, I wanted to try this method! I’ll submit it to you too if it helps!
Solutions to a blocking overflow
- Write out of order: I talked to you about it just before but this solution can be really effective if you have ideas for a scene without an idea of a plot.
- Planning: taking a break from the frantic Nano race to take the time to frame your plot or construct a detailed plan can be interesting.
#4 LACK OF ORGANIZATION
NaNoWriMo is a fairly specific exercise because it requires you to organize yourself effectively to count your words in the right way while finding suitable supports for writing. You may find yourself writing while losing the words you wrote or at least scattering them without remembering where you wrote them…
I recommend that you have a platform where you centralize all the words you write. This can be a document from a classic word processing tool like Word, like a file in a writing application like Scrivener, Scrapbook, Write Control and much more (there are more and more, choose the one that matches you!).
However, you are not required to write in this document. I sometimes write in Notion, where I feel good with Book Marketing Agency, especially from my phone, or in Ommwriter which is a writing software that I really like for writing fiction.
This year, my organization is as follows:
- I have a file in Scrapbook made up of 3 folders: 1) Story Mechanisms Articles and author site, 2) Artificial Love Project and 3) Personal Project. In these three folders, I have text sub-files: Article #1, Newsletter #1, Chapter 2… and so on! This folder allows me to centralize all the words I write. I regularly write in this folder directly (that’s what I do for this article, for example!)
- I also have, on Notion, an editorial calendar which brings together all the articles that I want to write in order to have ideas for text. I sometimes start them on Notion and then copy and paste them into Scrapbook in order to count the words
- Finally, I sometimes write fiction on Ommwriter and then copy and paste into my Scrapbook folder
#5 LACK OF CONFIDENCE
Last difficulty and not the least: lack of confidence.
This may be a lack of confidence in what you write (the quality and interest of your story) and/or a lack of confidence in your ability to succeed in NaNoWriMo. After having succeeded in NaNoWriMo 9 times out of 9 participations (I failed on Nano camps but never in Nano), it is rather the confidence in my texts which is not at the top – I am quite convinced that I have the ability to succeed in Nano! But the fact remains that this lack of confidence is particularly blocking!
If you doubt the quality of your writing
Here are the solutions that I try to put in place to restore my confidence in the novel that I am writing.
- This is not a final version: the text can always be improved, modified, updated!
- This text is not necessarily intended to be read by others – it can remain yours and only yours. Don’t think about others and only think about what you would enjoy reading.
- It’s a working synopsis: as I explained to you a little earlier, I finally decided to start by writing a working synopsis rather than a formal text. That really reassured me!
If you doubt your ability to finish Nano
If it’s more like you’re hitting the wall that is NaNoWriMo, here’s what you can tell yourself to overcome your fear.
- It’s always good to move forward: a failed Nano with 25,000 words is always 25,000 words more than you would have written otherwise!
- Doing Nano and writing is, first and foremost, learning about yourself: in addition to the written words, you obtain experience, XP. Learning that will allow you to be more successful during your next participation and, overall, to write better!
- And even if I fail? You have nothing to lose by failing NaNoWriMo. There will be no sanction, no punishment, no humiliation. You will not be the first or the last to fail the Nano and you will only be better prepared to face it the following year.