Writing habits. If you don’t already have a daily writing practice, you’re about to create one during NaNo, and you’ll be better off if you can figure out your daily routine before the real meat of the writing starts.
Over the next week, keep track of your schedule hour by hour, half-hour by half-hour if you have to. When are you faffing about on your phone or tablet? Playing video games? Your leisure time is likely about to become writing time, and then some.
In previous years, I’ve talked about having to give up One Thing in order to make room for NaNo. What are you willing to give up for thirty days to prioritize your writing? What else might be on the chopping block if things don’t go as well as you hope?
On the flip side, what do you need to make sure doesn’t get ignored? Kids, pets, significant others, jobs, the gym… while you’re working NaNo into your daily schedule, block out some time to devote to the important things so that you can keep your writing and other obligations separate and sacred. You might also experiment with a GTD time management system to help you balance your daily responsibilities with NaNo.
Action Plan: Test out your writing space and routine for a couple of days before October is over. Try out multiple methods and see which ones are the most practical or productive for you, and determine a backup or “time to spice it up” location just in case. If you already have a time management/productivity system in place, now’s the time to add 1,667 words to your daily to-do list!
Additional Reading: “How to Develop a Daily Writing Habit” from Medium, “Productivity 101: A Primer to the Getting Things Done (GTD) Philosophy” from LifeHacker, “Productivity 101: A Primer to The Pomodoro Technique” from LifeHacker