We’ve only just past the halfway point of the month, but I’ve already hit a few points where I’ve felt a little lull!
Here in London we’ve been having a gorgeous heatwave, and as a result I’ve been spending a lot of time out and away from my desk, fuelling my renewed fruit pastille lolly addiction. (And here’s a horribly awkward looking photo as proof:)
Despite that, this July has been a productive month regarding my writing: I’m somehow pretty much on track so far for my Camp NaNoWriMo writing goal. I’m currently at just under 10,000 words of my 15,000 word goal, and my story has evolved so much since I first started it, with several big plot changes having taken place over the past couple of months.
Even though I’m on target (so far), there has been a day here and there where I’ve felt a little detached and just not as enthused as I normally am to keep going. While it’s completely normal, it’s not something you want happening during Camp NaNoWriMo, where you’re essentially working to a deadline.
So how can you help yourself get over the halfway hump of Camp NaNoWriMo?
1. Connect with your peers
One thing that makes Camp NaNoWriMo so great is the opportunity to connect with other writers.
When I signed up for this July’s Camp, I asked to be assigned to a cabin with other sci-fi/fantasy writers, and so far it’s been an interesting and positive experience!
On our first official day of Camp, we started off by summarising our stories and over the past couple of weeks we’ve continued to chat, boosting each other up during periods of slowness, and encouraging each other to keep going.
So far the experience of writing with other people, from all across the globe, has been an uplifting and inspiring one, as the conversation isn’t just about the technical side of writing, but the personal journeys we’re all going on.
The more you join in the conversation, the more you connect and the more encouragement you’ll get in your own writing. There’s such a huge support network in the writing community, so come and join in!
2. Write whatever comes to your head
Do you ever just reach a point where you feel like you’ve hit a bit of a block? You’re not the only one, and so far this Camp I’ve come across it more often than I’d care to admit.
During times like these, it feels like there’s a lot of mulch clogging up my head, where the words I write don’t really do what I want them to. When this happens, I’m inclined to put down my pen and tell myself I’ll get to it later, when I’m more inspired.
But the thing is, writing isn’t a linear process, where the more you write the less blocks you come across: it’s more of a rollercoaster, where some cycles just flow better than others.
So when you do come across the infamous writers’ block, my suggestion is to write it all down anyway. Getting it all out will help you feel mentally clear of all that word crud in your head, and gives you something you can edit later.
It also helps you move past the feeling of ‘finality’ in your writing piece, because after all, not every word you write will stay forever in your novel. I have written a lot of rubbish these past two weeks because while I had a clear idea of my scenes, there were some parts I didn’t have formed that would have slowed me down; so despite how badly they read, I know at a later date I can go back and polish them off.
3. Read posts by writing bloggers and vloggers
One of the reasons I started this blog was because I follow so many writers with blogs and vlogs. They share so many great hints and tips on anything from improving your writing to getting published, and along with fantastic resources to help you develop your writing skills.
Some mornings when I need a pick me up, I’ll watch a vlog on YouTube as I get ready for work, or I’ll open up Bloglovin and have a read of the latest posts on the way to work, and I find it always gets me in the mood to put what I’ve learned into practice.
The following that these bloggers and vloggers have is huge, as it’s not just fellow writers who tune in but also fans of their books: you can see from reading the comments on posts that they inspire so many people, all of whom are full of support for them and their fellow readers and viewers too.
Nothing gets me more excited to get writing than reading other people’s thoughts and writing processes, which is why I suggest you follow some too! The insights you gain from reading about writing are so valuable, whether you apply them in your own writing or not.
If you want a few of suggestions on who to check out, I watch a lot of Kristen Martin and Kim Chance vlogs, and read a lot of blog posts by Rachel Poli, Coffee n’ Notes, and BlondeWriteMore. Go check them out!
Those are my (hopefully) helpful hints to get you back into the spirit of writing and over that halfway hump of NaNoWriMo!
I’ve also written a similar post from the last time I took part in Camp NaNoWriMo, that provide tips on how to keep yourself motivated during Camp NaNoWriMo! What helps you get over the halfway hump?