There's a reason 300,000 writers do this TOGETHER ever year. NaNoWriMo isn't just a writing exercise, it's a community art movement. It's something that we do with the support of our friends -- the ones we know, the ones we don't know yet, and the ones that will be complete strangers again on December 1st.
So how does this ginormous group of people manage to write novels in a month? I mean, let's face it, people do it. Lots of them. And it's not just because they're fantastic, prolific, genius writers. (Some are. But, just sayin'.)
Let's talk about peer pressure. Usually, it's a bad thing. HEY JIMMY, I DARE YOU TO JUMP OFF THAT BRIDGE WITHOUT A HELMET! IT WILL BE HILAAARIOUS. You know, that sort of thing. All the kids get around and start shouting JIM-MY! JIM-MY! And before you know it, well, splat, am I right?
But with NaNoWriMo, you can totally use peer pressure to your advantage.
Tweet something like: I'm so behind. But I bet I can write 3k today! Woo! #NaNoWriMo.
And you'll get a tweet back like: "HECK YES YOU CAN! #NaNoWriMo"
And with these tweets, you're not only holding yourself accountable to a goal you set for the day (3k words), but you've got your own
Other ways you can keep yourself accountable are making YouTube videos, posting HEY, I'M DOING NANO THIS YEAR! and talking about about your project. Now all your followers know and ARE EXPECTING RESULTS. Facebook, post in forums, talk in chatrooms (I'll be in a few chatrooms on deviantART.com quite a bit, I'm sure.)
Another great tactic that I love is getting some gear from the NaNoWriMo/Office of Letters and Light store. Okay, yes, this involves dropping some coin, but it goes to a good cause. Plus, if you own a NaNoWriMo shirt or mug or hoodie, it's like you're peer pressuring yourself into being worthy of wearing it.
Still, the number one way to keep yourself accountable, and thus stay on track, is to compete with friends. Make sure your NaNo-ing friends know what you're up to. Post your word counts. Make sure that you're keeping your NaNoWriMo.org page updated on your progress. Talk about it with non-NaNo people (they'll ask you how that novel is coming and it will drive you batty enough to make sure you make it happen.)
And, if all else fails, bet your kidney to a Mob-affiliated loan shark. If that doesn't keep you motivated, I don't know what will.