Editing During NaNo… (Don’t)

WHAT?! Don’t edit?

The idea of not editing work is far-fetched for some writers. It’s also why a lot of writers don’t participate in NaNoWriMo… which is unfortunate because NaNo is an awesome experience that has the power to get you to crank out 50,000 words in 1 month.

Here are the reasons why you shouldn’t edit during NaNo. I’m sure there’s many more.

  1. Revising and editing can be completed after the draft is done. Constantly revising and editing your words can hinder the first draft being completed. There’s nothing more discouraging than working on a chapter for three days and not being a step closer because you keep changing your words.
  2. NaNo requires roughly 1,700 words a day (I’m rounding up). Rewriting and deleting words stops you from reaching that goal.
  3. The goal of NaNo isn’t to have a perfectly polished first draft. Newsflash: that doesn’t exist. First drafts suck the big one. The goal of NaNo is to have 50,000 words. Get there and worry about your (sometimes) crappy words later.
  4. Because I said so.
  5. Should the comma be there? Crap, I’ve been writing for 3 hours and I’m on my third cup of coffee, how do you spell the word definitely? Is that even a word? NaNo can get crazy, especially when you get behind. If you focus on the little details, the big picture won’t come together.

I like to think of NaNoWriMo as my first draft thought dump. I put everything on the page. Sure, I want to reach 50,000 words, but it’s also about getting the story out of my head and on paper. The first time I write it, it’s rough. It sucks. But I wrote it. Editing and revising aren’t meant for NaNo. Just write the damn thing.

Until next time, Allison 🙂



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