NaNo Reward System

Today, let’s talk about NaNo Reward systems.

My Bujo layout from November 2020 with my reward system for that year

It’s something I’ve been doing for the past few years, and I’ve found that it really helps me. It incentivises your writing and gives you motivation to keep going! Of course, sometimes you might feel like you’re in the zone and you don’t need a motivational kick in the pants, but there are definitely going to be plenty of times where hitting the next goal on your reward system is just what you need.

So how do you make one?


  1. Pick your reward frequency.
    I like to do mine for every 1000 words, with an extra one when I hit the first 1667 as well.
  2. Decide what your rewards are going to be.
    It can be literally anything! Maybe each time you hit a goal, you get to watch an episode of a kdrama/anime/TV show, or a youtube video, maybe even play a level of a game! There’s also self-care options. You could do a face mask or take a bubble bath. The possibilities are endless!

    You could do bigger rewards, such as buying yourself something you’ve been wanting for a while – though maybe if you’re going to do this, you would do less frequent rewards like every 5,000 or 10,000 words!
  3. Make a goal/reward checklist
    It can be as simple as a list in a notebook, or some kind of fancy spread in your bullet journal, it’s completely up to you. For this you just need to write down your word goals so you can check them off as you hit them! You could also write the rewards beside each goal if you’d like.

    In previous years, I’ve had a bullet journal page with my 51 word count goals on, and then I had individual little clear bags that I wrote on the word goal, and then filled with a reward. (See the picture at the top of the blog post for an example!)

    I started off using sweets and then chocolates and I’ve slowly progressed to using tea, which gives me an excuse to get up from the computer and move around for a few minutes while it brews! And also to remind my husband and cat that I still exist and I haven’t fused to my keyboard just yet.

My NaNo Reward Sytem this year comprises of two things; a jar full of numbered slips and a tea advent calendar.

Every time I hit a word count goal, I’ll be rewarded with a cup of tea! The numbered slips in the jar correspond to the boxes in the advent calendar, so I’ll pick a slip out of the jar at random and then make myself that cup of tea. Each box has two teabags in, so there are two slips per number and then there are also some surprise Starbucks slips, so when I pull that out I’ll treat myself to a Starbucks instead.

The tea flavours are all a surprise, and I’ll probably be posting updates on twitter and my instagram stories if you want to see what kinds of flavours there are.

I also linked the advent calendar, so you could have a peek at the flavours, but I’ve done my best to avoid spoilers!

So there we have it. I hope this helps!

There’s only a week to go until NaNo, so there’s no time like the present to get working on a reward system of your own. Let me know in the comments/on twitter if you’re going to be making a reward system and what kinds of things you’re going to put in it!

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