November is National Novel Writing Month – also known as NaNoWriMo. NaNoWriMo is a challenge to write a whole novel (or 50,000 words of one) in the 30 days of November.

Planning big projects like this is just what Simply Goals & Tasks does best! So today I’m going to walk you through how you could put NaNoWriMo into your favorite to-do list app 🙂


Setting a Writing Goal

If you don’t already have a Writing Goal, start with adding one. Goals act like categories for tasks and let the app track how much time you are spending in that area of your life.

Adding a New Goal:

  1. From the main menu (three horizontal lines in the top-left) go to Goals.
  2. Hit the big plus button in the bottom right corner.
  3. Give your new Goal a name ( for example “Writing”) and a color.
  4. You can also specify how much time you would ideally spend on this goal. This won’t force or limit your tasks, it’s just for comparing how you want to spend your time vs reality.


Now the tasks!

There are a few ways you could split up 50,000 words. If you are pretty consistent, you could divide it into 25 days of writing 2,000 words. That gives you 5 days off. Or if you are more like me and don’t have that type of consistency in your life, you could write 0 words for each day you do 4,000.

Unfortunately, we don’t yet have a way to easily add 25 copies of the same task into the app. What you can do is add a repeating task, then delete “this and following repeats”. Not ideal, I know, but it will only take an extra second.

Adding All the Tasks:

  1. Start from the “Planner” or “Tasks main sections.
  2. Hit the big plus button in the bottom right corner.
  3. Give your task a name, such as “Write 1000 Words”
  4. Make sure you have your Writing goal selected
  5. Set the duration for approximately how long you expect it to take. F course this will vary a fair amount from day to day. Remember, you can edit each individual copy after the fact to keep an accurate record of how much time you are spending. Additionally, you can edit all copies of a repeating task to update this if you want to later.
  6. Set the schedule for a daily task of writing 2,000 words, then set the set the schedule to today. Setting a specific time is optional. Then set the repeat option to “Every day”
  7. Hit save! The app might take a few seconds to add all these new tasks, depending on your phone.

Delete the unwanted copies (we only want 25):

  1. Find the 26th copy and tap it to edit it.
  2. Where it says “Editing just this task” tap, then select “Edit this and following repeats”.
  3. Tap the 3 vertical dots in the top-right corner.
  4. Hit “Delete”


Organizing Your Time

Now in the Planner, you can use Drag&Drop to move your writing tasks around. If there are days you know you are not going to be able to write, move that 2,000 words task into a different day. This is best done in the Weekly view of the Planner.

You can also zoom out and look at the whole month in the Planner. Just select Month from the bottom. This is a good place to make sure you’re not leaving too much for that last week. Personally, I like to put as little as possible into the last week because I know other things will come up. It’s always better to be running ahead of schedule!

Good luck and happy writing!

Categories: ideas