NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month and it is this massive worldwide writing event where writers from every corner of the globe all vow to write 50,000 words in the month of November! It is crazy, it is hard, and it is awesome! The camaraderie and support and community with this event is so beautiful and admirable that it makes the hard work worthwhile.
And this year, I am partaking for the first time and I would like to share with you some things to help you get started, and hopefully smash NaNoWriMo this year…
Your NaNoWriMo toolkit/survival kit:
- Laptop – duh
- Notebook and pens – double duh
- Book’s plot and outline – out ready to check over
- Story ideas and notes – pansters need ideas if you want to smash this event!
- Post-it-notes and cue cards – don’t let ideas get lost
- Inspirational images and Pinterest – for those moments of block
- Character profiles – know who you’re writing about and the story will flow
- The NaNoWriMo site – it helps you track your progress and you get badges for milestones
- Scrivener – helps to outline, research, move things around and just yes!
- Thesaurus – for quickly getting those good words down
- Caffeine or energy-boosters – don’t let yourself fall off
- Snacks – keep yourself alive!
- Writing nooks and space – you will be a hermit for a month
- Break times – don’t kill your brain (or eyes) by never breaking
- Sprints and time slots – giving yourself allotted time to write and time to break works well for some
- Inspiration for your narrative in things you read or watch – I’ve got a list of spooky dark shows, films, and books to keep me on topic, motivated, and inspired
- Writing buddy – it’s better to do this with someone who’s doing it too (share the pain)
- Cosy socks, hot beverages, blankets, dressing gown, jumper, PJs, scarves, candles – keep warm, guys, it’s November after all
- Do not read over what you’ve already written or stop to edit! There’s no time in NaNo!
- Tell the people around you what you’re aiming to do, so that they stay out of your way or cheer you on.
- Make time, and don’t let yourself be lazy.
- When you can write a lot more, do, so that when the inevitable down days come, your word count doesn’t suffer
- Take breaks and don’t forget to look after yourself, please
- Push yourself and challenge yourself but don’t let the pressure get to you. Stress does not help the creativity to flow.
Remember that you’re a good writer. If this is your first time doing NaNo, or your first time writing a novel at all, don’t stress yourself out. NaNoWriMo is a great way to motivate yourself with a deadline and a goal, but don’t let it be your downfall. Use it positively, that’s all. Good luck, happy writing!