Monday 4 November 2019

Planning For #NaNoWriMo 2019 - The Creative Process


It's that time of year again and #NaNoWriMo 2019 is already four days old! I thought about doing this piece earlier on in the schedule but I just couldn't find the time to slot it in, so even though we're all knee-deep in words and such, I thought I would still do a piece about how I plan for NaNoWriMo and see if it helps for anyone else who might be in the middle of something and realising they need to rethink things.

I've never really been a full out planner, though I do do some. I have my chapters plans and all of that, and since this year I will be finishing the end of two projects and starting two new ones, this meant that I had to start thought dumping plots for the next two way before November started. Since both of them are either standalones or a new series, I didn't even have to wait to finish my other two projects. I could jump right into the chapter plans and character notes and go from there. So my first tip is to make sure you know what you're going to be working on. For me that's, usually, two projects at once. Everyone is different.

I more mean, know whether you need one or if you're able to pants the whole thing without any kind of plan. If you don't know that, then maybe see about making an outline at the least so that you have a better chance of actually finishing your project. I was pretty lucky in that when I wrote my d├ębut novel, I already had a pretty good idea of how I worked as a writer from other projects I'd done. But if you don't know, then plan anyway just in case, it might be that you find it's too much and stifles you, in which case, go pants the rest of it, there's no rule that says you have to stick to your plan one hundred percent.


I know that I am going to be pretty okay with the endings for the two projects, but I also know that since I edit as I go, and have done for a number of years, that I will spend some time doing that. So I've made sure to plan my writing time a little earlier in the day so that I can hit my goal for the day without losing time. This can also be something like having a playlist to write to if that's what you need, make it in advance so that you don't lose time searching for songs.


This happens both before, during and after NaNo. Make friends, get to know people, find others in your area, or look at live writing sprints on Authortube, anything that will help you feel part of the masses who are taking on this task, and also have some buddies who can write with you, are interested in your story and all the rest.


For me, my books are generally longer than 50K, like a lot longer, so I know that I won't finish it in the month. I also know that since I write two at once, I definitely won't get further than maybe the first act of the two new ones. But for those of you who are writing 50K, the book isn't done at the end of the month, even if you finish the first draft you still have revisions and edits and all of that to go through, so while yes you should celebrate hitting that 50K, prepare yourself for the rest of the work that will go into getting your novel published, should that be your end goal.

I know that because the needed word count per day is something like 1,667, a lot of people don't have a lot of time to get those words in, so they forgo other important things to make sure they hit goal. My final point, and tip, is to remember that this is for fun, that you need sleep, you need to eat and sometimes, you also need to take a break. Don't burn yourself out, it's not easy to come back from that!

Overall, I wish you all a very happy #NaNoWriMo19, lemme know in the comments what you're working on, if you're doing it!

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