Explaining NaNoWriMo and showing you how to succeed.
Only a Fool
NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writing Month — an event where writers all over the world attempt to do what professionals generally take months, years, and even decades to accomplish: write a novel.
The official goal is to write 50,000 words in November. 1,667 words a day, 30 days in a row.
If you ask me, it’s borderline foolish. Especially if you don’t prepare.
But it can be worth it.
Should You Participate?
NaNo can significantly boost productivity if done correctly. Here’s a simple flow chart to help you decide if this event is right for you.
If you have even 30 minutes a day, I’d recommend joining the party. Lower your goal to something more reasonable for your current circumstances and stick to it! You’d be amazed at what 30 minutes of writing for 30 days in a row can yield.
How to Succeed
Succeeding in NaNoWriMo requires simple prep-work, a system for making time to write, and a whole lot of perseverance.
The Prep Work
If you’re a Plotter, you likely have your own system for planning a novel. Make sure it’s completed before November 1. Pansters, here’s what I recommend for prep:
Find a character that intrigues you and drop them into a premise that excites you.
I also recommend daydreaming throughout the day and thinking of possible routes you want to take with the story. Just having that rough skeleton will help when you sit down to knock out those first 1,667 words at the start of this coming month. Continue reading →
I’m putting my nerd hat on for this post, since I am using anime and manga as my primary examples. In all 18 years of reading and watching Japanese stories, there’s a character type their writers use that I don’t see utilized in American stories often: the friendly rival.
Pen Friends, our very own SP host, Nova McBee, will launch a newsletter and start blogging on her new website! To celebrate, she will have THREE Giveaways in November for writers and readers. You don’t want to miss on those or a chance to support this upcoming author!
* Check out her post by clicking the link below!
Congrats, Nova! We’re all excited to be part of your journey!
Many moons ago, on a rainy Sunday in November, two young parents ran out of gas on the freeway trying to get to the hospital to have a baby. They eventually got there and I was born in a whirl of excitement. After this, one of my first memories was of smelling pumpkin pie–obviously, that […]
Congratulations! You have made it to the end of November. And if you’re in certain parts of the globe, you’ve already arrived in December.
I don’t know about you, but between writing like crazy this month, and getting caught up in the flurry of the holiday season, I’m already exhausted. Happy, but exhausted. Honestly, I can barely function after pulling a crazy marathon writing day yesterday in order to finish NaNoWriMo, so I’ll keep this short. 🙂
What is the one thing I struggle with most when I sit down to write for Nano? A messy room? My to-do list? The cries of unfed pets? No! It’s how much my back hurts when I sit down, no matter where I park my butt.
After hours sitting at work (or if you’re fortunate enough to have November totally open to write), how do you relieve the aches and pains of crouching over a keyboard for hours?
Today is the day when I planned to give you a really practical middle-of-NaNoWriMo pep talk, full of tips on how to push through to the end (whether you’re aiming for 50,000 words this month, or doing something else entirely).
If you are pursuing a career in writing, there are skills that NaNoWriMo and other contests like Pitch Wars can give you that will be invaluable, and from which you will reap benefits throughout your whole writing career.
Skill 1: Learning to Write Under a Deadline. AKA: working under pressure. Continue reading →
Since it’s Halloween today–and NaNoWriMo starts at midnight, I thought it would be a great day for a treat along with a writing tip. Read on to join in on our First Lines Game and have the chance to win a sweet treat!
I know, I know. Some of you are looking at that title and asking, “NaNo-What-Now?” I had the same reaction back in 2009 when I first discovered National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo for short. It’s an international event where writers commit to writing a novel of 50,000 words (or more) in just 30 days. Sound crazy? That’s what I thought, too.
But let me tell you a secret: NaNoWriMo changed my writing life. And it could change yours, too, if you’re willing to take the dare.