I did something terrifying today, I signed up for Digital Writing Month (DigiWriMo for short). For those unfamiliar with DigiWriMo, it’s a yearly challenge taking place in the month of November to write 50,000 words worth of digital writing, be they tweets, blog posts, text messages.
Given that the longest thing I’ve ever written (my MA dissertation) was 20,000 words, and took considerably longer than 30 days to write, the thought of writing something of that length scares me. But even if I fail to reach the 50,000 word goal, this should serve to help me grow as a writer. Staying within one’s comfort zone, isn’t the best way to grow.
In the spirit of DigiWriMo, this week’s edition of ‘links of the week’ is devoted to writing tips and tricks.
1. 5 ways to declutter your writing – I’m a cluttered writer. Whenever I go through my writing it edit it, I’m always struck by how many extraneous words I use. If you’re a cluttered writer like me, I highly recommend this post from The Thesis Whisperer listing five great way to cut some of the fat from your writing.
2. Digital Writing Month – Are you interested in challenging yourself as a writer? Want to connect with other writers? Are vaguely masochistic? Then Digital Writing Month may be for you! Here’s the homepage for DigiWriMo, it’s worth checking out if you’re feeling up for a challenge.
3. National Novel Writing Month – An inspiration for DigiWriMo, National Novel Writing Month is a similar challenge that encourages authors to write a 50,000 novel in one month. While it may be too heavily focused on one form of writing (the novel), this site contains a lot of useful information for any writer who wants to improve his or her craft.
4. How I went from writing 2,000 words a day to 10,000 words a day – This post from author Rachel Aaron shares her experience and advice for becoming a more prolific and focused writer. For her focused writing comes down to three factors: knowledge, time, and enthusiasm. Even if your goal isn’t to write 10,000 words per day, this post offers a lot of practical advice for becoming a better writer.
5. 10 tips on how to write less badly – This list of writing tips from the Chronicle gives great, practical advice for how to improve your academic writing. I really like tip #7 “Write, then squeeze other things in.” For most of my academic career I always assumed writing had to be an all or nothing practice – either I should sit down and write for 8 hours or I shouldn’t write at all. I now understand that writing frequently, in smaller doses is a much healthier, and more productive, way to write.
6. Advice on academic writing – Lastly, this post from the University of Toronto provides an comprehensive, if somewhat dry, walkthrough for becoming a better academic writer. It may not be gripping, but it is useful.
Well that concludes another edition of ‘links of the week.’ Expect a busy week on the site. Look for a post tomorrow describing my plans for DigiWriMo. Also, look for a Halloween-themed post describing a grad school horror story. This will also be the week that I finish my video exploring the Busan Aquarium.
If you have any writing tips or advice I’d love to hear it. Thanks for reading and have yourself a fantastic week.