• NaPoWriMo Week 1 - Dealing with the Chaos of Life

    Discord can't believe how much you've written already! And the number of participants, wow! Even the (self-proclaimed, but still quite official he assures you) Lord of Chaos himself is floored!

    Below the break, I get into how to deal with (or keep dealing with) the chaos life throws your way and still write on top of it. What to do when you're too busy, unmotivated, or just plain procrastinating to still get your word count goals written.

    Also, all the submissions are in and you blew my expectations away! We've got an updated list of participants at the end of the post to welcome the new NaPo writers!

    From what I've heard, some of you are way ahead of the game, some of you are right on course, and some of you are a little behind where you wanted to be by this point.

    Regardless of which applies to you, don't panic. Take a breath. You made it through the first week, and as long as you've written more than you usually would that's already an astounding accomplishment.

    I'll let you in on a secret: I'm behind on my word count. Yeah, the person running this whole event. I've been up against midterms, assignments, a messed up sleep schedule, and trying to get back into writing consistently after being a bit out of practice for a few months. 

    Which brings up a few good questions.

    How to Deal with: A Busy and/or Unreliable Schedule

    By this point, you've dealt with a week's worth of distractions, real-life priorities, and other projects. Intimidated or revelling, you know the scope of things now.

    In the first NaNo post, I suggested writing whenever you have gaps in your schedule, and I stand by that. You might need to squeeze it in where and when you can, be it on the bus, on your lunch break, etc. But some of you might have to pencil in your writing time in regular intervals. Every day at this time, in that place, you write. 

    Over time, that creates a habit and firmly establishes that this is your writing time (even if you have to schedule different times for different days). No amount of shiny objects and pressing deadlines will take you away from it. 

    If neither of those scheduling tactics work out, ask yourself if there's some smaller, less important thing you can give up to make time for more writing. Now I'm not talking meaningful time with your loved ones or that big report you seriously need to get done, but the little things. Unrelated personal projects, time spent on the internet, that sort of thing.

    But maybe it's not the amount of time so much as how you've been spending it. 

    How to Deal with: A Lack of Motivation

    A lack of motivation can be so tough to deal with during NaPoWriMo. The event can be a very motivating thing in and or itself, challenging yourself to new heights! But whether it's caused by mental health issues or a lack of direction, waning motivation can steal the precious time you set aside for writing.

    While a lack of motivation due to depression is a harder, more individualized beast to tackle (one that should be approached with self-compassion and understanding), a lack of direction is a fair bit easier.

    I know I said limit the amount of time you use brainstorming, but nothing says you can't do a little bit. And for that matter, go find some inspiration! Books, fanfics, movies, tv shows, even real life—if you know what you like best, you might find that creative spark.

    And as soon as you do, follow it. Follow it through the dark, no matter how twisting (or shoddy) the path.

    How to Deal with: Procrastination

    Oh yeah, my old friend procrastination. 

    Now, I think there's more to procrastination than most think. Laziness might be a factor, but it's far from the only casing variable and social scientists are still trying to figure out why it happens exactly. It might be more individual.

    For instance, are you procrastinating because you're a perfectionist and you can't live up to your own standards? Or what about our good friend imposter syndrome, in which you dread the work because then people might find out you're not the great writer they might've otherwise thought you were. 

    Or it could be that the workload is just too difficult, too big to tackle all at once? 

    You might be overwhelmed, or think you work best under pressure—see, there are lots of reasons people procrastinate.

    So, how do we fight it?

    No, not with video games! Bad, mind, bad!
    I think the same way we fight a busy, hectic schedule and a lack of motivation: we find what drives us to write. We find what drives us to participate in this crazy month-long event. What excites you about your story? What interests you? What made you want to do this to begin with?

    Focus more on that than the quality of the writing you're spewing out or the long road ahead. And focus on your goals! Seeing that word count rise up and up is a great feeling.

    And, as always, take care of yourself. Your well-being is so important. Don't neglect yourself.

    With that said, let's see the participant list! We won't be taking any more submissions this year, but wow, did y'all ever show up! For reference, we started the month with under 30 and we now have just under 60 participants, meaning we've doubled in size and shot past last year's turnout! Who says this fandom's getting smaller?


    75,000+ Club

    Author: Cinnebar, Goal: 100,000, Story: The Artificial 
    Author: XombieSlayr, Goal: 100,000, Story: Poppy's Delivery Service
    Author: Novel-Idea, Goal: 75,000, Story: Each Night I Dream

    50,000+ Club

    Author: Liberty Dude, Goal: 60,000, Stories: Don't Talk to Strangers; Rinse and Spit; The Spare; Two Scoops Too: 2 Scoops 2 Many; Spade of Aces; The Necessary Scares; Cootie Mark Crusaders; Don't Fear the Darkness; What a Horrible Pony; Daughter of Darkness; Hard Rain All Week
    Author: Duke, Goal: 60,000, Story: How I Died
    Author: Krickis, Goal: 50,000, Story: Playing House
    Author: Rune Singer, Goal: 50,000, Story: The Book of Ages. Volume 2. Sacrifice and Immortality.
    Author: Deep Delver, Goal: 50,000, Stories: Vellum and Velvet; The Sunken Citadel; The Wolfslayer
    Author: Background Voice, Goal: 50,000, Story: Narrating Dash
    Author: Mares Fillies, Goal: 50,000, Story: Mares & Twilight: The Ageless Fanboy Love Story (PG Version)
    Author: Ocean Melody, Goal: 50,000, Story: Pony Sim
    Author: Drag Orion, Goal: 50,000, Story: Bloodstone
    Author: Vante, Goal: 50,000, Story: Zeppelins and the Ghost Legion
    Author: Caneighdian, Goal, 50,000, Story: A Different Path
    Author: PastCat, Goal: 50,000, Story: Horsey
    Author: Snackrificial Jam, Goal: 50,000, Stories: White Coat Anxiety; The Scientist's Apprentice; The Ponies Upstairs; Daring Do and the Pillar of Hope
    Author: MarvelandPonder, Goal: 50,000, Story: Paradox #1: The Disappearance of Sunset Shimmer
    Author: CakeStealer, Goal: 50,000, Story: (Undecided)Author: MysticThunder, Goal: 50,000, Story: Artificial
    Author: Sun Sage, Goal: 50,000, Stories: Harmonic Fellowship, The Life and Times of Malt Witty, Conviviality
    Author: Paperback Writer, Goal: 50,000, Story: All That Glitters
    Douglas Trotter, Goal: 50,000, Story: The Worth of One
    Author: Orsuros, Goal: 50,000, Story: Dragon Dreams
    Author: JumpityDude, Goal: 50,000+, Story: Trapped in a World of Light
    Author: GameMasterLuna, Goal: 50,000, Story: The Great Celestial War
    Author: GoldenMane, Goal: 50,000, Story: Moonwalker, Daring Do and the Midnight Queen, AOT/EQG crossover (title undetermined)

    25,000+ Club

    Author: Moonbutters, Goal: 33,333, Story: Moon Moon
    Author: Silent Whisper, Goal: 30,000, Story: Children of the Sun
    Author: Anko, Goal: 25,000 - 30,000, Story: Reunion
    Author: Gray Suede, Goal: 30,000, Story: Belle in the Shell
    Author: Wings of Black Glass, Goal: 30,000, Story: The Ash of Fallen Stars
    Author: Random_User, Goal: 30,000, Story: Pining the Heart
    Author: PsychicKid, Goal: 26,000, Story: Hyperion
    Author: Corvoblu, Goal: 25,000, Story: The Sun Sickness
    Author: Frog Ribbit, Goal: 25,000, Story: An Adventure of Love; A Trial of Friendship
    Author: Monsoon, Goal: 25,000, Story: Our New Home
    Author: Ink Tracks, Goal: 25,000, Story: Rise Again
    Author: DrBksMD, Goal: 25,000, Story: The Buckball Championship
    Author: Synli, Goal: 25,000, Stories: Lyre Lyre ; Tailing the Truth ; Bitter Sweets ; A Troubled Melody ; Fragile Rainbows ; A Trick too Far ; It's Raining Mares?

    20,000+ Club

    Author: Hirsute Henry, Goal: 21,000, Story: A Night at the Movies
    Author: CreativeOverflow, Goal: 20,000, Story: The Silken Cost
    Author: Nighthawk, Goal: 20,000, Story: ProjectZero
    Author: Undome Tinwe, Goal: 20,000, Story: One Hundred Days
    Author: Summer Gem, Goal: 20,000, Stories: Radio Silence, A Hunter's Life, Celestia and Luna's day off; Summer's Journey.
    Authors: The Verse System (Fluttershy, Phaedriel, Chryasor, Gwyndolin, Asharaele, Asvoria, and Quela) Goal: 20,000, Story: The Life of Starswirl
    Author: Georg, Goal: 20,000, Stories: Sweetie Belle - Hogwarts Exchange Student, Harry Potter and the Little Pony Problem

    10,000+ Club

    Author: WriterWings, Goal: 15,000, Story: Lucid Dreaming
    Author: T6, Goal: 15,000, Story: Four Corners
    Author: Impossible Numbers, Goal: 10,000, Story: Volcanic Bond
    Author: TKitten16, Goal: 10,000, Story: A Furious Storm
    Author: Pie Flavor, Goal: 10,000, Story: Heartwarming Talk
    Author: Sloppy Steve, Goal: 10,000, Story: Fidelity
    Author: Ben Berlin, Goal: 10,000, Story: Rainbow Dash's Sea Adventure
    Author: Dashed Rainbows, Goal: 10,000, Story: The Dog Incident
    Author: Rocky Road, Goal: 10,000+, Story: The Perfect Storm
    Author: Nohr, Goal: 10,000+, Story: Lights, Camera, Statues?

    1,000+ Club

    Author: Nathan Han, Goal: 6,000 - 7,000, Story: Guilt
    Author: Explosion Mare, Goal: 2,000, Story: Why Do We Make Rainbows?