By the end of Day 5 of any given NaNoWriMo, an aspiring “winner” of the challenge should have lodged 8335 words … that’s 1667 for each of the five days.
Do that, and keep up that pace, an you’ll nail your 50,000 exactly on November 30.
But also, if you do that, there is a better than even chance something else will happen … you’ll find your flow.
“Flow” sounds new-age, froufrou, and sorta silly to me, too, but I’m telling you, it’s a real thing.
Write every day, and it gets easier to write every day.
It gets easier to think of what to say, because you sort of stop actually thinking about the words.
Even the physical act of typing gets easier as your fingers and brain and eyes relearn the interplay between the three of the and the screen and the keyboard.
And, so, if you find some measure of flow in your writing, you might wrap up Day 5 of NaNoWriMo with more like 11,743 word rather than a mere 8335.
That 3408-word surplus? That’s your buffer, and you should seek to increase it at every turn, because stuff is coming your way.
A broken water pipe, the flu, a flat tire … and the dagnab holidays.
It’s all going to rob you of your precious writing time, but if you have a couple of days’, or ten days’, worth of words — excess words — already in the bank, you can weather those tough times and still sail into December with a sparkling new, flawed but complete first draft on your hard drive (or, hopefully, in the cloud).