Thursday, October 18, 2012

Preparing for November

As I mentioned in my last posting, November is a busy writing month for me. In case anyone reading this is interested in participating in either NaNoWriMo or the PAD challenge (or both), I thought I'd share my pre-November "routines."

I don't actually much of a routine for the PAD challenge; it's very similar to what I did for NaPoWriMo (see earlier blog about that), but I do go through my booklet of poem forms to make sure it's up to date with any new forms that Robert Lee Brewer has posted on his website.

But I do have more of a routine for NaNo:
1) I usually come up with an idea for my novel around the summer. After I finish editing my novel from the previous NaNo, I begin to write down any small thought for a story on index cards and file them away. During June or July I pick one that I feel the most urgency to write and begin to do any research required for the novel (setting, technology, etc.).
2) In September, I take a break. I focus on other things like poetry or another story that needs to be edited or any of my other hobbies. This way I'm not over-thinking the upcoming novel and I can let my subconscious play around with the story.
3) October is preparation month. Yesterday was the first annual NaNoPrep Day and you can see what other writers do on Twitter by looking for #nanoprep. I usually begin cleaning up my office, outlining the story, writing character sketches and setting up my music playlist to write to. There are many resources online to help you with any of these. For example, this year I've been using this resource.

This is just what I've done for the past couple novels and it's worked so far. My first NaNo I didn't prepare at all and I still won. I think it's just a matter of finding what works best for you.

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