For those who don't know what Nanowrimo is, allow me to elaborate. Imagine writing a book. Okay, now imagining writing a whole book in a month. Sounds crazy right? Wrong! Nanowrimo is short for National Novel Writing Month, a program endorsed by authors such as John Green. The whole gist of the program is that you write a 50,000 word novel throughout November and thousands from across the world participate in this event. This will be my fifth year attempting Nano, and I'm currently on track to surpass every year on record. So, what makes this year different from every other? I'm still drowning in coursework ranging from three term papers to watching films for class, and yet I have found time to write 1,667 words or more each day. To put it simply, I've changed my whole writing routine and come up with a few tips and tricks to stay on track for the rest of the month.

Find a writing buddy

Nano is not for the faint of heart. Find a friend to help you through!

Alexandra Michalski

Whether you know this person in real life or only through the internet, it doesn't matter. By having a buddy, you also get your own personal support system throughout the month. Make sure to encourage one another and push yourselves to reach 1,667 words each day. This is my first year of really pushing the issue of having a buddy, and it's really helped me stick with my novel!

Participate in word sprints and writing games

We made up our own game to convince us to get writing!

Alexandra Michalski

My buddy came to me on the third day of November stating that she was planning on stopping her novel because she was so far behind already. So, I challenged her to a word sprint and ended creating a game complete with tokens and a fortune teller full of writing dares. By challenging one another in a competitive setting, we managed to write hundreds of words in mere minutes! My buddy told me that this day of word sprints singlehandedly saved her novel. Who knows maybe writing games can save your novel as well?

Just get it on paper

Even if you think it's the worst writing ever, it still counts towards 50,000 words.

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Your idea may not be fully formed in your head but write it down anyways! You never know where a half-formed idea could take you. New characters may make an appearance, or a new subplot could develop before your very eyes. While this has been a challenge for me, especially since I like to plan my novel ahead of time, it's allowed for new scenes to sneak their way into my book.

Write whenever you can

Whenever you can find the time to write, write!

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Whether its minutes before your ancient history class starts or right before bed, write! In the past, I would pick an hour or so that would be my designated writing time and only write during that scheduled time. By pushing myself to write when I would rather be relaxing or doing other things, I've started to associate writing with free time. Throughout the week I've noticed myself looking forward to my free time more and more because that means I get to continue writing my book!