I wrote an article for Medium members on prepping for NaNoWriMo in just 7 short days. Read it here.
November is National Novel Writing Month, or #NaNoWriMo, if you follow along on Twitter. This November, I’ll be writing ten short stories compressed into 30 days. That’s about 5,000 words per story, with each story taking me about 3 days to write, or about 1,600 words a day. However, my plan is a bit nontraditional and most writers will be writing the first draft of an entire novel. The only guideline is that you have to write 50,000 words in the month of November in order to “Win.”
NaNoWriMo is one of those writing events that tends to get a lot of flak, usually from people who’ve tried it and found it didn’t work for them. But for authors who work well under pressure, deadlines, and outlines, NaNoWriMo can be a plotter’s dream. For every naysayer, there’s a writer who swears by this process.
If you’re a procrastinator, never fear, it’s never too late to start prepping. Below is a 7-Day guide to setting up for NaNoWriMo. If you follow this, you will end up with a good portion of your idea already sketched out, which will leave you free to write during the month and not stalled with “what happens next” or “now what?” questions halfway through.
This is just one way to approach NaNoWriMo planning. I encourage you to adapt to your own system, feel free to experiment, and don’t be afraid to tweak as you go. You do you. The goal here is to get inspired, not to get bogged down.
Join the Circle of Weird
I offer a monthly circular filled with the following goodies: 1. A list of cool places to submit your weird work 2. Outlandish writing-related news from the web 3. Fun updates from me, your corporeal host. To sign up, click the button below:
Holly Lyn Walrath is a freelance editor and author of poetry, flash fiction, and short fiction. Find her on Twitter @HollyLynWalrath
Like this post? Leave a tip or subscribe at Curious Fictions:
I run a monthly e-newsletter with writing prompts, editing tips, writing music, and more. Click below to sign up!
Holly Walrath's books on Goodreads
ratings: 19 (avg rating 4.21)
Our Space: Shorts & Poetry from the Houston Community
ratings: 4 (avg rating 4.25)
In Medias Res: Stories from the In-Between
ratings: 2 (avg rating 4.50)
The 2017 Rhysling Anthology: The Best Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Poetry of 2016 Selected by the Science Fiction Poetry Association
ratings: 16 (avg rating 4.31)
ratings: 9 (avg rating 4.67)