Category Archives: Nanowrimo

Link: NaNoWriMo Bullet Journal

Linkshare- NaNoWriMo Bullet Journal

National Novel Writing Month is closing in fast, so I wanted to share links and resources for my fellow writers that will endure the NaNoWriMo.

Keeping a journal not only helps keep you on track, but it turns into a resource book to keep on hand at your desk. Boho Berry provides some nice tips, showing you some of her pages, and many can be worked at any time of the year, not just November.

Her channel provides many tips for planners, so if you want to get into bullet journaling and planners, this is good resource.


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NaNoWriMo 2015 Prep

The NaoNoWriMo, known as The National Novel Writing Month, was started in 1999 by Creative writer, Chris Baty. (see No Plot? No Problem!).

If you check out the web site, it explains the basic rules of writing fiction of 50,000 in thirty days in any genre, including fanfiction.

Back in 2007, I completed the National Novel Writing Month challenge. I learned a great deal, however, I’m not sure if I’d dedicate that sort of time again. Grueling, time consuming, I found myself not enjoying the writing process at all. It was much like boot camp; forcing you to write through pain, doubt, and everything else.

But others take on the NaNoWriMo almost every year, and I often suggest writers try it at least once for the experience, to see what you learn about yourself. Even if you fail to reach the 50,000 words in 30 days challenge, you still gain insight into yourself.

My tips:

  • Get writing done early in the day. I set my time for this because if things come up, you still have the rest of the day to make up the word count.
  • Get friends and family on board. My first time, I ended up friending someone who ended up teasing me when I fell behind- DO NOT DO THAT. You want a support system, not naysayers or competition. You want encouragement, not someone to cut you down.
  • Have your plot and characters planned out before November 1. In 2011, I tried NaNoWriMo but had nothing planned and quit a week into it. It was too stretched between ideas and plot changes to accomplish much. Have the most basic of conflict>climax>resolution outlined.
  • Don’t beat yourself up if you miss a day. You can make up the word count on a weekend or tacking on writing time throughout the week.
  • Even if you don’t reach the 50,000, the process can still prove valuable as a learning tool, as well giving you a block of writing you can edit later.

Post in comments your own experience with the NaNoWriMo, if you plan to join this year, or questions/comments about it. Winking smile

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NaNoWriMo and Published Anthology


I’m not doing the NaNoWriMo this month, but I am working on 1000 words a day as a personal challenge, focusing on fiction writing.  I can choose any of the projects, providing its fiction. I feel its perfectly acceptable to create your own challenge, if it gets you to write.

The National Novel Writing Month spurs authors to complete a novel of 50,000 in thirty days. I think its also pertinent to note here that writing furiously for a month also strips a writer to the bare bones of his or her skill, kind of like boot camp. You push yourself beyond what is enjoyable to ‘work’, and even misery at times. In the end, you learn something of yourself and more importantly, the process of writing.

I did it once- which was enough for me. I’m content this year to spend time focused on fiction writing, and following the general rules, but a more forgiving since I have work and a teenage son to homeschool.

I also compiled another anthology from my writer’s group. This year, we selected Horror for our theme.

Our cover for the Horror Anthologyincludes my cat, Max, who often joins our writing meetings by laying across notebooks and handouts. He often picks the members who are allergic to cats, and gets lot of pets and affection. I asked members what they thought, and many agreed, Max would be on the cover this year.

Last year’s Writers Anthology: 2013 included all genres (which made it difficult to publish into a category).  This includes poetry, one of my short stories, and more choices. For this week, the Kindle version is free.

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My Top NaNoWriMo Tips

nano_participant_icon_largeI managed to complete the 50,000 word challenge back in 2007, and only once did I attempt to do it again. For those of you out there, hoping to complete this challenge, I offer some basic tips;

Have your plot outlined. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but writing like a madman (madwoman), you don’t want to find yourself midway through, and stuck on a plot point.

This was what stopped me the one time I attempted the NaNoWriMo again. A week into it, and the story sort of fell apart. I feel behind, felt horrible, and even found my creative writing wanted to write non-fiction anyway.

writersthoughtsThrow perfection out the window. Forget about spelling correctly, finding the ‘right word’, or formatting. Write like the flames of Hell are at your heels, and get the story out there.

Remember that is, after all, a rough draft anyway, and you’ll fix misspellings, punctuation errors, and changing words (and complete sentences) through the editing process.

writer01Find your writing ritual. I found a glass of Rum and Soda with a tiny lit candle at my lap-side, after my son was in bed, and the pets fed. This marked ‘writing time’, where my door was shut and I was to be left alone.

I preferred nights, but during the day, when my son was in school (he’s homeschooled now), provided me that vital alone time to write without interruption.

Don’t forget to back up! I knew of two authors who had their laptops quit midway through the month of November, all their writing completely lost. I strongly recommend a cloud drive (Dropbox) or a USB flash drive. It doesn’t hurt to install on the drive word processor like OpenOffice should you need it. This will enable you to use ANY computer and work off the USB drive.

Enjoy the Journey! I never published the novel I finished, but the time and effort of NaNoWriMo earned me something more.

  • I learned that I could write 50,000 words in thirty days. This averaged 1700 words a day, and more if I fell behind, but I could do it.
  • I learned that my husband and son were so much more supportive than I thought they’d be. (Hubby brought me coffee every day!)
  • I learned its important to be selective to whom you invite to join you in this challenge. A so-called friend became very competitive, instead of supportive, offering no support whatsoever. Even her husband made rude comments to me, midway through the contest.
  • I learned the value of writing crap. This is perhaps the most important element of NaNoWriMo, to give yourself permission to write crap so you can focus on the STORY, knowing you will edit later.

Post in comments your own experiences with National Novel Writing Month, and if you’re taking the challenge this year.

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