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90 Days to Your Novel Challenge4 min read

Starting September, I am taking on the 90 Days to Your Novel challenge. This is a book that was written by Sarah Domet and that I absolutely love! I love the structure that it provides (my mind tends to be all over the place). I also love the deadline of 90 days, hence the challenge. As a writer, I know I sometimes wait for inspiration to strike and ONLY THEN would I write frantically on a notepad whatever pops into my head. Fortunately for me, I realized that is not a great way to actually create a novel (sadly it’s taken me far too long to realize this…). When you know better, you do better and I decidedly wish to do better!

I have a lot of projects and commitments that I am balancing this year. That is why more than ever I need the structure of an outline to create my second draft. Without it, I will spend another year wishing I wrote a book instead of actually doing so. In the book, it recommends putting aside at least 3 hours every day to writing, for me that would mean carving out that time at night writing while my baby is sleeping (I am thankfully a night owl).

FIVE TIPS TO HAVE YOU WIN THE CHALLENGE

I attempted this challenge before and I will be honest, I was not successful mainly because I did not prep my environment to win. These are some hard-learned tips that will help you succeed (the first time) if you decide to start the challenge as well.

  1. Visualize yourself with your finished first draft.¬†One of the things that keep me from accomplishing my goals is the amount of work I believe it takes to complete it. What I do now is visualize having my finished novel in my hands and it’s been helping me stay on task even on days where I really don’t feel like writing.
  2. Acknowledge your weaknesses. I am a known procrastinator and knowing that I am prone to distractions, I searched online for distraction-free tools to keep me focused. In a future blog post, I will share the tools that I currently use to cut out the noise and focus on my writing.
  3. Determine what you will be using for the challenge beforehand. I used to have several notebooks of writing materials, while it was great at the time to jot things down, it was horribly disorganized. This time around I am using the application Storyist as my all-in-one writing software. I took some time to organize the folders in the software for scenes, character profiles, research, images and pieces of writing that I thought would be useful. So far it’s been great.
  4. Trust the process. It’s okay not to do it perfectly! I told myself that I would start at the beginning of September and guess what? I didn’t! However, I did not beat myself up and give up, I am continuing on the path that I decided for myself. I know that I am building a muscle for future novels. Maybe it will not take me so long for my third revision or my next novel, but for now, this is where I am and I accept it.
  5. Figure out why you NEED to write. I always wanted to write a novel, but I never had a true reason to keep at it when the going got tough. Since the birth of my daughter, I feel like I have a renewed purpose. I wish for her to read my writing, I want her to find characters that look like her in my novels and other books. That is why I absolutely NEED and WANT to write, it’s much bigger than me.

I am so excited to work on this challenge, even if I do change directions later on in my revisions, I would have built a strong foundation for me to do so. I can already feel the anticipation to dive into my revisions (who am I kidding? I am terrified!). But first, let’s get this challenge complete. Do you have a project that you are working on? I would love to hear about it!

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Hey there! My name is Rachel S. Lucas and I welcome you to my writing blog. Here you will learn more about my writing process while I embark on creating my first book (yay!). You will also find some book reviews on my favorite book genre, YA Fantasy, and Sci-fi.