I’ve done Nano for several years, and I find it immensely valuable. Several comments:
- The best thing for me about Nano is the daily word count graph. That motivates me. No way am I going to fall behind the trend line. I’ve made 50k or more every time. I’d love to have this as an app I could use any time.
- The 30-day deadline, and telling others about it, are also big motivators.
- Nano is a tool. Use it however it serves you. Three years I used it as a novel dump, just pouring words out. Once I used it to rewrite a novel from the preceding year; my daily entries were rewritten chapters. Last year I used it to write a bunch of short stories.
- What is writing? When I’m generating a stream of new material, I don’t write — I dictate. I walk in the hills, talk into my iPhone, then have my dictation transcribed. I can churn out a lot of story that way, and it’s told in narrator voice.
- I’ve generated material for at least four novels during Nano. Then I have to rewrite and edit and rewrite and edit. So far I’ve completed one and a half novels. The first one is moving toward publication. Without my Nano-boosts, I doubt I’d have any of them done.