NaNoWriMo is a tool many writers use to force big word counts – you start a project one the 1st of November (theoretically you’ve been prepping for at least the entire month of PREPtober) and get to at least 50’000 words by the end of the month. That’s 30 days. It’s roughly 1700 words a day, give or take.
It sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? I thought so the first time I signed up. And I didn’t finish that. And then I wrote Abel’s legacy – and I wrote that fast and the word count is in the region of 120’000 words – far more than 50’000 – so I thought this year might be a little better. But no. Alas, a total lack of preparation and having submitted my thesis only a week before starting meant that I didn’t even settle on the project I’ve started until the week just gone – nearly a full week into the whole month. But I decided on a project, and that is what matters. And I intend to continue the project even if I don’t finish it in the allotted 30 days.
And that is the thing about writer’s block. You just have to push. Persevere. Let it happen but give it a gentle nudge.
Today I’ve been writing like a mad thing. I’ve written two and a half thousand words, had half a dozen naps and spent a good amount of time trying to write but being unable to write because of the medication I’m on because I’m ill.
Writing productively is hard on painkillers – unfortunately it is also difficult to write while in pain, so there’s no winning. But, I am woefully behind schedule for NaNoWriMo and I desperately want to complete it. In terms of hours left available and words still needed to write, I don’t know if it’s feasible, but screw it, I’m going to do my drug addled best.
What tools have I been using to try and achieve this impossible goal of 14K words in two days while sick? Fighter’s Block. You may have read an article I wrote previously about the online application, if you haven’t, google it – it’s a pretty simple concept.
Fighter’s Block is a tool I have used to write short sections in the past. However, today I did something a little nuts. I challenged the monster to two consecutive 1000 word sprints. And I did it!
See? I did it!
Fighter’s Block – A new writing tool to combat Writer’s Block!
If you have writer’s block, or lack the impetus to get a story out of your head, then this is a site for you.
First off, you set your goal. Then, you hit FIGHT.
The typing is a fight. You have to type, and each word is a hit on the monster. if you stop typing the monster gets some hits in, each hit one point off your one hundred point total. When you complete your word total, the monster dies. You then go into the sidebar menu and pick a new monster. The fight begins again and you really have some incentive to keep going. It’s like typing without a concern for typos or spelling errors or whether it’s good enough to go on a page; it’s enforced word vomit and the enforcer is a (initially) egg shaped creature that seeks to destroy a small elf-like avatar (ie. you).
I can’t explain what is so encouraging about the little egg trying to beat the bejesus out of a small cartoon. As your ‘health’ gets down, the ability for your avatar to land a punch seems to drop; I didn’t notice this until I had a brief pause to remember how to spell something and when I started typing again I realised I had to put in enough words to bring my health back up to one hundred before I could start hitting the monster again.
I will definitely be using this app more often. It has saved my characters twice now in the last three hours.