Now I know many of you won’t be participating in National Novel Writing Month’s (NaNoWriMo) 50k novel challenge, but have you ever considered trying to break blogger’s block using the same writing methods? As bloggers I like to think we too face a lot of the same challenges that novelists do. We write a lot of content on a regular basis and sometimes we hit a wall. Which is why I propose a solution. Take on the NaNoWriMo philosophy and apply it to your blogging world.
The NaNoWriMo methodology to writing is simple. The challenge of writing a 50,000 word novel is tough. As writers we tend to self-edit or excessively plan before getting down to the nitty-gritty or end up watching a chain of Buzzfeed videos instead of writing, but NaNoWriMo requires you release those inhibitions and to ‘write with abandon’. This means writing whatever you want with no edits, no rules and with the goal of just putting pen to paper (or finger to keyboard) to get kick start your creative juices.
Here’s my NaNoWriMo Blog Sprint Challenge for you:
- Open up your writing programme/tool of choice – notebook, word doc, blog editor etc.
- Starting writing out any and all ideas that come to mind. These can be post ideas you’ve had simmering in your head for a while or just start brainstorming. You can write whole sentences or phrases or just single words, doesn’t matter at this stage.
- Keep writing…and writing…and writing…
- Do this for an hour and see where you get to.
- Marvel at the fact you’ve probably drafted 5 blog posts without realising it!
- Do not under any circumstances start self-editing whilst you’re in ‘writing mode’.
- Forget grammar/punctuation/spelling rules – you can edit what you’ve regurgitated later.
- Write even if the flow of words doesn’t make sense.
- White out paragraphs of text you’ve already written if you get tempted to start editing.
- When you run out of steam for one post idea, start writing about another one.
- Don’t self-edit.
- Turn off your wifi/unplug from social media. This is writing time not time to scroll through Instagram.
- Don’t worry if ideas seem stupid at the moment, just get that word count down and deal with the consequences later!
- If you can’t think of what to say add ellipses or leave a gap to fill in the blanks later (this is my favourite tip!).
- Don’t self-edit.
- Resist the temptation to Google or look up words/ideas/spellings on your phone – you’ll only spiral into distraction.
- If it helps time yourself to write alongside @NaNoWordSprints. The account runs all the way through the month and helpfully alerts you of how long you have left to write – make sure you set it up so you receive notifications when they Tweet!
- Ignore repetitions, focus on that stream of consciousness, you can delete those phrases later.
- Did I mention don’t self edit?
So are you ready to take on the challenge?
Let me know how you get on!