Let me tell you about the magic that is Pacemaker
I'll be honest guys, I've struggled with writing this year. Up till September, I hadn't really drafted anything new. I tried. I really did. But it wasn't working, and the words were not coming no matter how much I wished them to. The only things I managed to do were write a short story for a contest that I won, and gut the hell out of my YA fantasy in less than a month (love revising because I end up doing it fast!). But the drafting stage was broken. There was no magic with it, there was no feeling good about anything. I was hit hard with behind-the-scenes stuff, and I just couldn't wrap my head around finishing another book. So after I finished revising in early July, I gave myself a summer of no writing. I played a video game I'd put off until I got my work done, and watched a ton of TV shows while I did it. (Fell in love with Schitt's Creek, got creeped out by Mindhunter, was inspired by Queer Eye to begin fixing my life, and I also watched a bunch of movies I hadn't seen yet).
By the time August came around, I had about 19,000 words in a new WIP, and many more stories I'd started and hadn't done much with. I was really in love with this idea I had, a villain origin story about a girl who'd had enough and who destroyed a kingdom because of her anger, but it was difficult to write. So when I stumbled upon someone talking about how much they love Pacemaker, I looked into it. I'd heard of it before, but never checked it out, and now I'm NEVER going back to writing without it!!! It's AMAZING, and it has helped me so much that I've written almost 50k since September.
If you don't know, Pacemaker is a platform that allows you to set your own pace and goals with writing. Which, yes, you can do on your own if you really want to (I recommend not). But you can create *any* kind of plan you want. Don't like seeing how much you're behind because that's stressful as fuck (thanks NaNoWriMo)? That's fine, Pacemaker will just adjust your goals accordingly. Want to do the same amount of words every day or get the worst of it done first? YOU get to pick how much it is, and how it happens. The best part is that Pacemaker does the rest for you. I personally chose Oscillating so that I could have a mix of heavy and light loads. AND I got to block out all 3 of my full work days so that I never have to worry about writing on them. That's one of my favorite features of this. I can block off days or ask for higher goals on Sundays and Saturdays. I've set it up exactly how I want it, and it's been working for me well. October was a lighter overall load, so I haven't written as much this month, but I'm still on a great path to finishing this WIP by the end of December! And after how 2019 had gone before this, I'm happy with it!
I've already converted one friend to Pacemaker, and I encourage more of you to give it a try if you haven't! I seriously don't know where I'd be without it. I still struggle with writing, and some days I don't hit my goals or I just skip them if I'm like eh, I'm not actually feeling it. But not only is it nice to not be overwhelmed by the amount that I want to write before January 1st, it's great to have different goals every day that I don't work. It's also fantastic to have a deadline for myself!!! I unfortunately have the windows version of Scrivener, so I don't get the deadline (yet? I don't know if I ever will). AND IT'S FREEEEE. I already can't wait to make more plans for my other WIPs and get to working on them. Pacemaker has made writing FUN and simple and I love it. I'm never going back to life without it.