Going A.A.W.O.L.

A.A.W.O.L.-Authors Aggressively Writing in October for Literature

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J.D. Scott organized and instituted the concept of “Going AAWOL” to inspire authors to band together in a group effort to accomplish individual writing goals in the month of October. By sharing our successes and struggles we hope to cross the finish line, whatever it may be, together. This concept, just like NaNoWriMo, can be adjusted to any month and any guidelines.

The rules are simple…

#1 Set Your Goals
What is your monthly and weekly word count goals? This is tailored by each author, not set by the group. We are all in different places in life and in our writing, so every goal is considered progress. Make your goals somewhere between reasonable and challenging. You’ll be sharing these with the group.
It might also help to set your word count goal for each day/writing session you schedule.

#2 Check In
A private Facebook group is established to allow participants to connect, share their progress and help each other overcome obstacles. Check in every day if you can, but at the very least share your weekly progress with the group. We want to know what is working, what’s not and why.

#3 Reward Yourself
It’s helpful to think about both small daily rewards, such as your favorite writing snack, coffee, etc and weekly rewards, like going to the movies, spending time with friends/family or playing your favorite video game. Work hard, play hard!

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-Take a long hard look at your calendar and schedule writing session appointments for yourself.
-Share your goals with friends and family. Announce, post, and tweet that you are Going A.A.W.O.L.! Give them an opportunity to support you in this endeavor.
-Think about your most productive time of day to write, your favorite place, environment (quiet/with music, indoors/outdoors, etc), preferred snacks/drinks, and try to accommodate yourself as much as possible.
-Think about what will distract you the most and how you can overcome those things.
-Switch WiFi off during writing sessions and consider putting your cell phone out of reach. The world will be there when you’re done.
-Learn to say “NO” during the month of October. You will have to make sacrifices in order to accomplish your goals, but it’s only one month and then you can return to your normal chaos.
-Accomplish as much “life stuff” as you can the month before and postpone anything possible to the month after.
-Do not edit during the month of October. The goal is to get as many words on paper as possible. Make note of any revisions or edits that come to mind and deal with them in November…there’s plenty of time for that.
-Avoid researching during October. Make a note of what you need to look into and then continue writing. If you find yourself unable to continue writing, schedule the research time separate from your writing time.
-Eat healthy and squeeze in some exercise if you can. Take care of yourself so you will be operating at ideal capacity.
-Decide how important this is to you and treat it with priority. People will respect it as much as you do. Covet and protect your writing time as if it were your precious.
-Schedule days off. Plan time for fun and social media time before and after your writing sessions.
-Try to plan out what you are going to write. Make a rough outline of subjects or chapters if that will help.

No matter how much you accomplish, taking steps toward your destination is a success! We cannot guarantee we will hit our goals, but if we give our best effort, we can guarantee we will be closer to the finish line at the end of the month!


A.A.W.O.L. Questionnaire 

1) What feelings comes to mind when you think of writing?

2) How do you transition into your creative mind?

3) What is your biggest obstacle or challenge that keeps you from writing?

4) What distracts you most while you are writing?

5) What’s your most creative time of day to write?

6) Best possible environment…drink, food/snacks, scenery, music?

7) Realistically how many time slots can you schedule at your best time of day and in favorite environment?

8) What do you need to accomplish, or catch up on before October 1st so that you have more time freed up?

9) What can you take a break from or delegate to others during the month of October?

10) What days will you be taking off from writing during October?

11) What weekly or daily rewards will you give yourself when you accomplish you weekly writing goals?

I’m Going A.A.W.O.L.!

Authors Aggressively Writing in October for Literature

Intention is everything so I am making the choice right now that I’m going to write as much as I possibly can in the month of October.

Group Goals: I will check in daily or at least once a week to share my progress with the group.

1) My word count goal for the month of October is…

2) My word count goals per week is…


Personal Goals:

I will be writing…

_____ days week 1

_____days week 2

_____days week 3

_____days weeks 4

I will be scheduling________________hours per writing session.

I will be writing ___________________words/chapters per writing session.

I will NOT edit, rewrite, or review my writing during the month of October. My goal is to get as many words on paper as possible. When revisions come to mind I will make a note and move on. I will share my goals will my friends and family to give them an opportunity to support me.

Signed____________________________________     Date______________

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