NaNoWriMo Day 22: Write a Clean Draft

Today, I revised A Cowboy for Noelle, my 2021 NaNoWriMo project, in one full day. I have since passed it on to my beta reader. The plan is for her to point out glaring plot holes and inconsistencies. I will fix them, have the manuscript proofread, and move up my launch date to mid-December. Up to this point, I have spent six working days on this 50K-word book.

The first book I self-published ran 80K words and took a lot of revisions. It was a mystery with a lot of wordbuilding. I about wanted to give up several times were it not for the encouragement of my author friend. 40-some odd books later, I am able to write a cleaner draft to meet a rapid release schedule.

It takes 50,000 words to win NaNoWriMo. Wouldn’t it be nice to keep most of the words that you started with once you are in the revision process? You might as well make all those words count.

PS I am not advocating for perfection. Especially since it might lead to paralysis. (Keep typing!)

Here’s how to make your words count:

1.Make each scene contribute to your story arc.

2.Let the action in your chapters propel your plot forward.

3.Have your characters act consistently with their personality.

4.Ensure there is conflict until the end to keep the reader engaged.

5.Give your characters and conflict depth. Mine your deep-seated fears, dreams, and experiences and channel them into your story.