50,000 Words!

No, I haven’t written 50,000 words yet. NaNoWriMo hasn’t even started (it starts TOMORROW)!

But if you are a fellow NaNo, you might be wondering how on earth you can write 50,000 words in 30 days. I know I am.


NaNoWriMo suggests writing 1,667 words per day for 30 days.

If you are a human being, like myself, and not a machine, it might be difficult to have a daily goal. That’s why I’m going with a weekly goal, with two days off for Thanksgiving. Here’s my plan:

Write 50,000 words in 4 weeks.

November 1–7, write 12,500 words.

November 8–14, write 12,500 more words (total 25,000 words)

November 15-21, write 12,500 more words (total 37,500 words)

November 22-23, celebrate Thanksgiving and maybe even hit the shops on Black Friday (or wake up at 3 am and write, making up for a low word count)

November 24-30, write your final 12,500 words (total 50,000 words)

If you want to take weekends off, write 2,500 words per day, 5 times per week.

Since the NaNoWriMo week starts on Thursdays this year, here’s my ambitious plan that will likely not come into fruition.

The unlikely-to-happen Plan

November 1,2, 3: Write 5,000-7,500 words total

November 4: Take day off

November 5, 6, 7: Write 5,000-7,500 words to bring weekly total to 12,500

November 8-14, 15-21: Repeat pattern above 2x

November 22-23: Take Thanksgiving off from writing (but maybe do some final plotting and planning)

November 24: 2,500 words

November 25: See if I’m up to writing 2,500 words.

November 26-30: Write up to the 50,000 words.

Deep breath before the plunge

Take a few moments today to completely forget about what you signed up for and are getting yourself into.

Didn’t work? Okay, then distract yourself by creating a desktop wallpaper for your computer with your own wordcount goals, including some images that will inspire you as you work. I’m thinking of creating one with all my “cast members” (famous or interesting-looking people that fit my mind’s image of the characters). Though I won’t likely do it today—I’ll probably do it one of the days I am experiencing some writer’s fog.

The last year I did NaNo, I took a pastoral picture of a castle and pasted my word count goals on to that for my wallpaper. If you are doing a historical novel like me, perhaps you can make a wallpaper collage of historically-accurate source images, like costumes of the era. Be creative!

See you on the other side—in November!


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