National Novel writing month is quite literally right around the corner (provided you consider next Saturday to be a corner, and Sunday to be around it). And what should you be doing to get ready? Not much.
NaNoWriMo is meant to be – and in my opinion most fun when – its spontaneous and not planned. Of course, if you want to plan, you can. I am a little. But I’ve found that less preparation – at least in terms of your story itself – is most fun and most productive. The unfortunate thing about story planning, is that it makes you want to write, and when you want to write you write, and when you start writing before November its not really NaNoWriMo, is it? So if you want to start prep-ing, heres what you should be doing instead.
Budget your time: Decide when you’re going to write. When do you have time? Write in your calendar when you’re going to write and hold yourself accountable for writing at those times. Let friends and family know that you may have to skip a few dinners (not Thanksgiving, preferably) for your writing.
Plan for meetings: Get involved in your local NaNo Chapter and look for when and where you can fit their meetings into your schedule. They may have ‘write-ins’ where they pick a place and meet there to write or plot in a group. If your local chapter isn’t active, be the person to kickstart it!
How are you going to write: Do you need to budget large chucks of time for writing three hours at a time? Or are you going to write sporadically, twenty minutes here and there. Figure out your words per hour (NaNo provides a resource here for those in the Young Writers program.)
Young Writers Program: This brings up another point, for those of us under 18 we have the unique choice of joining the Young Writer’s Program which lets you chose your word-count goal and use the aforementioned calculator to figure out whats best for you.
Social Media: The tragic truth is that blogging, tweeting, instagraming, and messaging; all that social media we love so much takes a lot of time. Time that, at least once a year, might be better used for writing. You have five days to go, you have long enough to start up a bunch of drafts to periodically post, or to drop into a queue of information. Or you could just ignore your accounts….. Yeah right. Personally I will be posting excerpts from my writing, and periodic word-count updates.
Finish Your Halloween Costume: I’m almost done!