Having an excuse to carve out a chunk of time for writing every day has been the best part of the NaNoWriMo challenge. It’s been said that doing something for 30 days will create a habit. At the end of November I will have developed a healthy, two-hours-per-day writing habit, and I don’t intend to give it up just because the Challenge has ended. And you know what? I’m more excited about that prospect than the novel itself!
It has been a week since I started the challenge and I’ve been able to keep to my daily goal of at least 1,667 words. The NaNo website has a nifty stats graphic that shows my progress in different ways. I share the stats here so that you can see how the challenge works, but also because I’m proud of my progress and I hope to inspire you! Being able to check these numbers each day is a good visual inspiration — especially when I get home in the evening after work and see “0” in the “Words Written Today” row. I definitely don’t want to go to sleep with that number remaining. It’s becoming a habit to take two hours every night and devote them to writing the novel. Before NaNo I would write when I had a minute, then do another activity, then back to writing, stir and repeat. That is over.
It was a surprise to find that I could make my daily goal fairly easy, though much of the credit goes to my 95 words per minute typing skills. (Thank you, Mrs. Scopatz, my high school typing teacher.)
But it’s really the magic of creating a story that has been the fuel for this first week. Writing “on the fly” like this is valuable as I grow as a writer, and I’m honing new skills while using this method. I feel like an improvisational actor or musician. Or a mom asked by her child to “Sing me a new song.”
Here’s to the habit of writing!
Question: Have you formed a daily writing habit? If so, what’s it like?