Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

01 Nov 2020, 0:05 a.m.

Nonfiction Book Writing in November, and Daily Wordcount Posting

I am writing a book about open source maintainership. I had planned to get the book to editors/agents by the end of this year; I have made very little progress on it this year so now my goal is to have a small self-published early version of the book available by the end of the year.

Recently I wrote up a blog post about how the hobby writing project I did Sept-Oct felt doable for me, and how to apply those lessons to my book project I've been procrastinating on. Having a little writing prompt every day feels like it will help. I'm also planning on blogging stuff as I write it, or posting it publicly somewhere. Maybe a GitLab repo to start?

November -- there's NaNoWriMo. It's for novels. I saw that there are some rebels who use it for nonfiction, but I don't want to deliberately contravene the goals of NaNoWriMo so I'm not signing up for it formally, but I am committing to writing each day in November as a way to accumulate a lot of progress and momentum for the book.

Today I sat down with Leonard and he helped me restore my faith in my current outline, and I developed a template for each chapter which will make it easier for me to write them, and I wrote seven writing prompts so now I have writing exercises/chapters to start for each day in the coming week.

I also signed up for a daily words community on Dreamwidth to give myself people I am accountable to. I will also tell y'all: I want to write 400 words per day in November, as a minimal goal. On good days I know I will blow way past that! But just -- every day I want to write at least 400 words.

Any of you doing daily writing in November? If you're posting daily "I wrote [number] words!" then where are you doing that? I'd like to join in.