Camp NaNoWriMo happens every April, and it's a project to complete a certain amount of words in a month. My goal is between 16000 and 20000 words. It might not seem much from a glance, but when you actually sit doen to do it, you'll realize that 20000 words is a lot. You might finish your story and then realize that you're still a couple thosuand words short. And there's nothing you can do about it because your story's finished, so you have to put in a plot twist or an extra character just to fill up the space.
To stop THAT from happening, here are a couple of tips that you can use to reach your word limit, but not make the story seem like it's boring and dragging on.
1. Develop Your Characters
If you feel like your story is too short, write more about the characters. Let the reader get to know them, be able to relate them, feel like they've known them forever. In a good novel, when you're reading, you'll feel like you know what the main character is thinking and feeling, because you know them so well. A good example of this is The Hunger Games or Divergent, where by the end of the novel, you'll almost feel like you ARE the main character. Go into depth about your characters, their faults, their fears, their personality, etc.
2. Plan It Out
When you need to finish a novel in 30 days, its important to know wher ethe story is heading. You have to lay out the train tracks before you start the train, because you don't want to come to a dead end. Start with a brief synopsis on what your story is about, then go deeper, writing about what each chapter focuses on. Make profiles for your characters, describe settings, have a whole document or a folder dedicated to it.
3. Quantity over Quality
This is one of the rare times when quantity wins over quality. Your goal right now is reaching your goal. The important part is how many words you write, not how good it is. Focus on writing more, you can edit it later, after you've finished your novel. Think of this as a first draft, and later you can ho over it and edit it out properly.
4. Sideplots, sideplots, sideplots.
If your main story is too short, throw in a couple of subplots in there. It can be a father-daughter relationship, a love triangle, a supporting character's struggle, whatever. Have another plot running alongside the story to amek it a little more interesting, ust make sure that your main plot is the focus of your novel.
5. Daily Goals
This works for some people, while it fails miserable for others. Do the math, and set a daily word-count goal for yourself so that you finish on time. This doesn't work for me, however, because some days I have an unstoppable flow of words, otehr days I can only write so much. Whatever you do, just make it a point to write at least once or twice daily, and to write whenever you're feeling particulary inspired.
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