History That Never Was

Home of Dawn Vogel: Writer, Historian, Geek

Gamifying Your Writing

Gamification is defined as “the application of typical elements of game playing (e.g. point scoring, competition with others, rules of play) to other areas of activity, typically as an online marketing technique to encourage engagement with a product or service.” In addition to the marketing applications,¬†for some writers, gamifying writing tasks can be a great motivator, as it helps you celebrate small wins to encourage you to keep going.

One well-known site for gamifying writing is 750 Words, which encourages you to write just 750 words a day, every day. In return, you get cool graphs and charts to show you how you’re progressing. It’s similar to the idea of NaNoWriMo, too, which also uses charts to show progress and has rewards for hitting the end goal (in that case, 50,000 words during the month of November).

You don’t need to have a fancy website to gamify your writing, though. I use stickers in my planner book to mark days when I’ve hit my word goal, days when I’ve worked on a non-word goal (but still writing related, like editing) project, and when I sell a story or poem. If I’m feeling discouraged about my writing, I can flip back through the previous weeks and see what I’ve accomplished! And if those pages are looking a bit boring and devoid of stickers, I can use that as motivation to do a thing that will let me add a sticker to the current day!

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