By Emma Palova
It’s that time of the year again to get ready for National Novel Writing Month in November. I’ve participated three times and won three times, and got three books out of my participation. Don’t get me wrong it’s a grueling challenge when you have to write 1,700 words a day to reach the 50K goal.
“Bank on words when you can,” said author Jean Davis, a 17-time NaNoWriMo participant. “There will be days when you won’t be able to write as much.”
Number one tip: Be ready. Clear your schedule for November, no unnecessary projects. Make it very clear what you’re going to be doing in November.
Don’t get distracted, stay focused on your project. Don’t go back to rewrite anything. Just keep on moving forward. The outlines are good, but the synopsis is better. The synopsis clearly shows a developed idea.
Zone into your writing at the same time every day. No deviations in the schedule.
NaNoWriMo has coaches to get you through the challenge, but ultimately it’s up to you to pull it off. And the first draft does not have to be messy. No. 1 thing is clear thinking and letting the characters lead you into the story. Let them carry the story.
Then, you also have a buddy system to keep you accountable. Use it or not, just be careful with your time. Use tools such as the Pinterest board for the project to keep everything together.
When you can’t write you can’t write, go for a walk, take a break. Just don’t stay out there all day. Keep your writing simple kind of like journalism writing for all to understand at all levels. No adverbs or big words. Just big ideas.
Have several ideas going on at once, just in case the first one doesn’t work out. Whether you’re a pantser or a plotter, just write.
Having said all of the above, I will be working on a sequel to The Lost Town. I am hammering out the main character as we speak and placing him ready for the adventure.
Each book should be better, than the previous one. I will keep that in mind. Ok, I have just found out that the best plotting method for me is The Save the Cat 15-beat sheet. Onwards.
Happy writing. Listen to our podcast.
There will be no new episodes in November, only reruns of summer episodes in case you missed them.
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