As many of you have seen on Twitter, I signed up for NaNoWriMo for the first time this year. In case you don’t know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, a yearly event in which tons of writers try to reach 50k words (usually) in one month. That averages about 1667 words each day for thirty days straight.
Sound crazy? Yeah, I think so too. But hey, it’s a challenge.
I’ve never done NaNoWriMo before, but when I asked about it on Twitter, you guys practically exploded with all kinds of reasons why I should join, so I decided to give it a go!
That was a few days ago, and since then I’ve been getting the hang of the website (www.nanowrimo.org) and planning some preparations for the month of October (since the event doesn’t start until November).
Now, I like to plan everything in advance, even preparations for a plan, so I decided to share what I’ll be doing to get ready for NaNoWriMo 2016. Keep in mind, this is my first year participating. If you’re looking for a Top 10 Strategies To Guarantee NaNoWriMo Success, I’m not the guy to ask. I’m simply sharing some of the fun stuff I (and others) will be doing to be as ready as we can!
1. I’m writing a sequel
Cheating? Maybe. Sort of. I don’t think so. As many of you know, Where the Woods Grow Wild is coming out later this fall, so NaNoWriMo is the perfect chance to knock out a huge chunk of the sequel, Where the Trees Grow Taller (temporary title).
The benefit of a sequel is that all the returning characters are good to go, so I won’t have to spend a lot of time starting character development from scratch. It also means the story world and a plot premise are in place for me as well.
2. Outlines. Outlines everywhere
I love me some outlines! I firmly believe in letting my story grow and change organically, so my finished products rarely look much like my outlines start out as, but I still map everything out before I start writing no matter what project I’m working on.
Nothing against you pantsers out there, but it’s just not for me. Personally, I need to know where I’m going and how I’m going to get there before I walk out the door. Besides, I think outlining ahead of time will save me quite a few headaches during NaNoWriMo…right? *nervous gulp*
3. Pinterest boards
I’m a visual person. I understand and work with concepts better if I have a physical reference to look at. In other words, by the end of October, I’ll have a Pinterest board full of character references, location inspirations, random information graphs, etc. I’m keeping this board secret, of course.
4. Spotify playlist
I know this one’s pretty popular, but I’m creating a whole new playlist for my sequel. Where the Woods Grow Wild got its own soundtrack, but I want to start with fresh music for this project. Though, on second thought, I’ll probably have to shell out change for a premium account to dodge those aggravating reggae adds.
5. Assorted notes, charts, etc.
I have a whiteboard in my writing shed and oodles of sticky notes and notebook sheets. I guarantee they will all be full of CSI level tracking boards by the time NaNoWriMo rolls around. Anything that’s not an official outline will join the stack! Again, I like to plan. A lot. And I’m visual. So…yeah, it’s gonna get messy.
Lots of it.
Are you participating in NaNoWriMo 2016? How are you getting ready for this year? Have you participated in previous years? What was it like for you? Any tips for a first-timer? Talk to me in the comments, friends!
And in the meantime, have a great day.