How to really WIN at NaNoWriMo: A quick help guide.

It’s officially November!! That means.. It’s NaNoWriMo time! YAY!!! This month is super special to me because in 2012 I took the plunge to do Nano for the first time, after I had chased being an actress and a singer. (No I am not kidding!) I wrote my first YA novel! I’ve written over ten books since then! It’s hard to believe I’ve only been a ‘writer’ for four years, though I know that technically it was in my soul from the time I was a little girl. I just chased everything else first! LOL.


So, let me explain what it is first of all… and then I’ll tell you all the things! 😀

First: National Novel Writing November- First couple letters of each word put together to make NaNoWriMo. Second: It is a commitment to write every day for a month until you reach the grand total of 50k words. The idea is to commit to starting and finishing a novel, but the 50k word count is the goal. If you already know that, awesome! Let me include a few things to help you on your journey!

If you aren’t signed up and think that this madness sounds appealing, here’s the website:

NaNoWriMo sign up! It’s a free and fun competition.

Are there actually any prizes? Not technically, sometimes sponsors provide discounts on some major awesome stuff like Scrivener (a fantastic story writing software) and Createspace will offer a free print or two of your published book, but that’s usually about it.

You do get the prize of knowing that you committed to something, and finished it! That’s pretty awesome, right?

Okay, onto the help:

Writer’s Digest has a great blog with some excellent tips to doing this and achieving your goal.

Tips to writing a book in 30 days. 

As well as Wikihow!

Participating in NaNoWriMo

This here is my favorite. A day by day outline to help you get that story written. Check it out… it’s awesome!

Day by day outline

Of course the calendar so you can stay on track:


Next, a list of supplies:

A notebook, or laptop… whichever your choice of writing tool you prefer.

Other writers who can encourage you and cheer you on.

The Nanowrimo website (seriously.. you need this site, it is amazing! There are so many great helps on here to keep you moving.

Your unbridled desire to write

Lots of funny cat videos, so you don’t lose your sanity.


Do suggest joining a couple solid writing groups beforehand and establishing connections with a small circle of committed writers who can motivate you, challenge to word sprints, and etc… This is not essential, but it is helpful.

Do let someone in your family that you live with know, that this is something you want to do and that you may be writing for a couple hours a day.

Do establish that writing time and try to hold it sacred. It’s essential to find routine during this madness, or you may very well lose your mind! LOL.

Do Commit to writing every day. If you have a job, that may be hard… lucky we have the weekends right? It’s only a little over 1600 words a day, and if you use the outline I provided above… you’re going to find that it goes by quickly.



Don’t stress yourself out about making the word count exactly every day, the main idea behind Nano is to motivate yourself to start writing, and do it. You never know what will come of a story you create, not to mention, there is never going to be a shortage of readers.

Don’t quit because you missed a few days, or maybe started too late. This is the best contest to ‘lose’ because even if you lose, you win. You started something, and that is remarkable.

Don’t compare yourself to other writers/nanowrimo’ers, there are some who prep all year for this, and finish whole novels within just a few weeks time. It takes an insane amount of commitment to do that, and we are all different. So don’t compare yourself.

Don’t ignore the nagging voice in the back of your head telling you this will be fun and you should give it a go. YOU SHOULD GIVE IT A GO! 😀


I am always here for encouragement, help, to connect as a buddy on or whatever else you need me for. 😀


You can connect with me here:


Instagram: Authorasanderson

Twitter: Authorasandersn

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