This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it's done. It’s that easy, and that hard.  ~ Neil Gaiman

The countdown is on for NaNoWriMo! For those who don't know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, an online challenge to write 50,000 words in thirty days during the month of November. For those of you (like me) who need a calculator to figure that out — it means doing 1,667 words per day.

Every day for a month.

So why do it? Some people find the challenge allows them to turn off their inner editor and get those words down. Others like the community of writers all pursuing the same goal. And still others are just a tiny bit weird and simply like the pressure. (I hear some people also really like going to the gym — so let’s be honest, there's a lot of weird out there.)

You can use NaNoWriMo as a chance to start and make a big dent in a new manuscript, push through an existing project, write up backstory/diary entries/character descriptions to flesh out a book, or do a series of short stories. You’ll see that in the Creative Academy we’ve got a lot of options to help keep you on target with your NaNoWriMo goals.

Free for everyone in our Resource Room

Our Daily Word Count Tracking Spreadsheet — for Excel and for Numbers — will keep you on-track to meet your 1,667 words a day during November and help you stay committed to your manuscript until that first draft is done.

We are big believers in the power of positive thinking here in the Creative Academy, so we celebrate all the writing wins — not just the big ones. If you're meeting your NaNo goals, we encourage you to acknowledge your commitment to your writing. In case you don't already have mini-bottles of champagne in your fridge, we've come up with some ideas to help you in our 8 Ways to Celebrate Good Writing News infographic. And to be clear — banging out 1,667 words a day is really writing good news for most of us!

For members of the Creative Academy

We've got your back with daily writing sprints. Join the creative energy of writing in a group. We meet virtually and have a quick check-in at the end of the hour. Members are collectively writing thousands of words together every day. It's addictive in a healthy way!

Eileen's Happy Hour office hours will be focused on helping you trouble-shoot challenges if your character paints herself into a corner — as characters are wont to do when you really don't have time for that nonsense.

Are you someone who needs to be held accountable to meet your writing goals? We've got you covered, too! Donna will be facilitating a special Author On Fire mastermind group to keep NaNo participants honest. They'll meet on all five Thursdays at 10AM Pacific, starting n November 1st. Email Donna for all the details.

We've also created a new NaNoWriMo Team in our online community. This is where members can cheer each other on and help wipe away tears of frustration.

If you're not a member of the Creative Academy and want in on these perks, just click the image below and join us!

Some other people's helpful resources for NaNo prep

Here are 30 tips to survive 30 days of NaNoWriMo from writer Sarah Werner

Here's a 4-week success plan from award-winning author Janice Hardy.

The NY Book Editors have some tips to help you plan for a month of crazy... uh, NaNoWriMo.

And if inspirational writing quotes help you get into the zone, Early Bird Books has got what you're looking for.

Join the Creative Academy today for author accountability, coaching and community