NaNoWriMo: How are you preparing?

Less than 4 weeks away before the official kick-off of the NaNoWriMo season. Of course, that doesn’t mean that NOTHING is happening between now and November 1st. OH NO! There’s prep!

So what do you do to prepare yourself for NaNoWriMo?

Here’s what I do:

1. Outlines: Whatever it is you want to call an outline. I don’t do the spider web or bubble designs for outlines. I write loads of notes.

My notes get written/typed out in a million different places and I still haven’t figured out the best means to my easy ends. I use Evernote for much of my phone note making. But I also use a small pocket notebook (the traditional paper kind), GTasks To-Do app that allows me to add reminder notifications, and Google Keep. I’ve attempted to use Scrivener on a large scale for my big products. It’s super handy for outlines and prepping for NaNoWriMo. Problem is, it has ZERO mobile component.

If I’m not at my computer and come up with a great idea, it CAN’T go into Scrivener. Period. So, as things get closer, I have to piece everything together. Not the best method. But it’s mostly because I’m still trying to find ways to get all my notes and writing in one place.

2. Friends and Writing Buddies: That’s right. Find others that can keep you motivated, help you along, and just generally provide pep talks when the times get…rocky. I already have 10 or so, which is twice as many as last year and the year before that I did it alone. Friendly competitions works well as a self-motivator.

3. NaNoWriMo Swag: Who can’t live with a little more stuff? Especially when that stuff is stickers, posters, t-shirts, and the like. I bought a friendly competition poster where all our names will go up and progress will be followed. Winner gets bragging writes. Since we’re all writers, bragging rights are hard to come by and well sought after.

4. Scheduling: This one might not seem obvious, but 1700 words a day for 30 days can take some effort. Now is the time to figure out when and how that’s going to happen. If you’ve got family (and most of us do), you’ll be spending time with them during the holiday weekend. That knocks several days off your list. Are you going to write late at night? Early in the morning? During breaks? In your sleep?

Since I’m a NaNoWriMo Municipal Liaison, I’ve already scheduled my time into a bunch of Write-ins I’m hosting. But that doesn’t I’m writing then. I’ll be hosting those events. I have to find time elsewhere. Which I haven’t yet. EEK!

5. Candy: I need an endless supply of sugar and other bad for me stimulants. I’ve got buckets stacked to the ceiling waiting for day one. I’ll figure out what I’m going to do the next 29 days later.

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