10 NaNoWriMo Prep Tips To Help You Succeed This Year
Are you planning to participate in NaNoWriMo (otherwise known as National Novel Writing Month) this year? Me too! This will be my first year ever formally participating, but as a blogger, I'm constantly writing. October is NaNoWriMo prep month and I'm hoping you'll get engaged in some writing prep with me this month too! We have just about 3 weeks left and I'm getting pumped - I hope you are too!
First, what IS NaNoWriMo?
NaNoWriMo, aside from being National Novel Writing Month, is where you (and a ton of other people around the world) aim to write 50,000 words in a month to complete a novel. For those doing the math at home, that's an average of 1,667 words a day. It doesn't seem like a lot, really, but if you don't make time for it every day, it can start to add up! The end goal: to finish.
- Don't overthink it!
Don't spend so much time overthinking your novel that you don't get it finished. You can always tweak and change things later, but try to keep on your goal for writing every day! This goes for prep month too. Don't spend a ton of time overthinking things.
- Start your outline!
Some people don't outline during NaNoWriMo prep month, but if it helps you stay focused and motivated and ready to tackle the task at hand, I say go for it! This can be anywhere from 1-2 pages. Make sure you outline all the key events and incidents in your story.
- Break your story into chapter ideas.
Get some chapter ideas flowing by writing little snippets about what will happen in each chapter. This is a great way to keep your story moving.
- Work on characters.
Whether this includes drawing your characters, writing down a list of their traits, or anything else about their character development: just get to work! Decide on character names, character style, etc. This is one of the most important parts of your NaNoWriMo story, so make sure you're working on it now during NaNoWriMo prep month!
- Ask yourself a list of questions about your character like:
- Why does this character stand out to me?
- What about this character is unique?
- Is this character inherently afraid of anything?
- What childhood events shaped his/her life?
- How does he/she approach conflict?
- Decide how your characters will dress.
This is important stylistically because it helps set the scene. Are they dressing in a futuristic way? Older style? If it's important to your scene and relates to the story, develop this.
- Plan ahead.
If you're not able to write 1,667 words every day, come up with a game plan. Which days will you write more and set apart more time?
- Set up your writing spot!
I'm planning to get a little office space set up for myself after we move next weekend and I suggest you all do the same! Having a dedicated writing environment can make all the difference. Somewhere clean, quiet, and with all the tools you need to complete your novel: laptop, sticky notes, pen, paper, etc.
- Find writing buddies!
Bonus points if you can find a real life writing buddy to hang out with and go on writing marathons with! But if not, hit up your online squad and see if anyone of your friends on social media or otherwise will be participating in NaNoWriMo too! Motivation is easily found when you have a buddy to keep up with! If you want to be my writing buddy on the NaNoWriMo website, my username is severesparkle!
- Stock up on your faves.
Whether this is hot chocolate, coffee, or tea, prepare yourself for success by grabbing your favorite warm drink to keep you warm during those late writing hours this fall. My personal favorite is this hot chocolate in a super cute mug!
- If all else fails, find a quiet place to think.
My personal favorite is a hot bath with a a nice LUSH bath bomb and a good book. Sometimes reading another book gives me inspiration but also just quieting my mind and focusing on one thing helps me to focus.