How to Prep for NaNoWriMo That Writers Will Love


Less than two weeks from today writers everywhere will be in a writing frenzy. Yes, National Novel Writing Month begins.

Are you one of those writers? Are you ready for November 1?

Last week I wrote about three reasons why you should do NaNoWriMo. Now that I see I have talked you into doing this month of writing 50,000 words, are you prepping for a month of writing?

I have spent quite a bit of time the past week outlining the novel I am writing. I wouldn’t say it has taken over my life like actually writing the novel will. However, the thoughts and ideas are whirling around in my head.

I know some writers don’t do any prep work. Others who do a little bit of outlining.

Personally, I am a planner. I like to have some idea as to where I am headed from beginning to end.

I honestly don’t know how some people can write without an outline, but whatever works for each of us. Right?

In addition to outlining, I psyche myself up. This year has been a tough one for me so far. I am hoping to turn that around with a great rough draft of a novel.

What do you do to prep for NaNoWriMo?

Create an outline

One of the things I absolutely have to do is make an outline for my novel. I cannot write a novel without knowing what my characters are doing and where my plot is going.

I used to write an outline without much thought. But I have now read a couple of different books about outlining – Rock Your Plot by Cathy Yardley and The Easy Way to Write a Novel That Sells by Rob Parnell.

I thought Cathy’s outlining was helpful. You can even go to her website and print out a workbook. I originally planned this novel using her system and started writing this novel as part of  last year’s NaNoWriMo.

However, the more I thought about the 32K words I wrote last November the more I wanted to start over. So I am.

This year I am using Rob’s outlining. I like it much better. His version is simpler for me. Again, sometimes it takes us a bit to figure out what works for each of us.

Find the motivation

Life has happened for me. Things in my personal life aren’t going very well. I know things happen in everyone’s life.

Lately, it seems like things have slammed me left and right. I stand up after each thing happens and get knocked right back down again. However, I am not going to let that stop me from writing a novel in a month.

I have joined a new Facebook group called the 10 Minute Novelists and have gained tremendous motivation from them. They are all so helpful and kind to one another.

I love the support I get from every person there. One of the gals came up with the write jar for motivation. It seems to be helping some, and the more I write the more it helps. I will share more about that in a later blog post.

Make sure family understands

This is one thing that my family usually understands. My 14-year-old son is all I have left at home. He has no problem entertaining himself with his Xbox. In fact, most nights he is either doing that or watching a silly comedy on television.

My son will also help out with our dogs – you know taking them outside so they can use the bathroom, feed them.

My parents don’t live very far from me, but they know how important writing is to me. They have been supportive in my writing career and are two of my biggest cheerleaders.

If I tell my mom I can’t text or chat right now because I have to get some writing done, she won’t bother me until I am able to do so. How great is that?

Have a writing buddy

One of the great things about NaNoWriMo is their writing buddies area on the website. After you sign up, you can add people to be your writing buddy.

I already have a few from Camp NaNo earlier this year, but I am slowly adding others for this upcoming event. You can see how far they are with their novel. Some of my writing buddies are also Facebook friends so we have offered to cheer on each other.

While on the NaNoWriMo website, you can also join a regional writing group. These groups meet in person and have emails sent to you right there on the website. There is a municipal liaison who sets up in person meetings if you wish to join those.

This is my third year to do NaNoWriMo, and I have yet to join one of those groups. Maybe I should. Has anyone joined a group in person?

Final thoughts

I don’t know about any of you, but I am almost ready for NaNoWriMo. I have a bit more to do on my outline, but it should be ready by the end of the week.

And I must say I am super excited to be rewriting this novel. My new idea is going to blow the old version out of the water. No kidding.

I wasn’t sure I would even give it a try this year. But with my lack of motivation, writing a novel in a month could be the kick in the pants I really need to get going with my other writing.

I have psyched myself up. What about you? Are you ready for National Novel Writing Month? What can I do to help?

4 thoughts on “How to Prep for NaNoWriMo That Writers Will Love

  1. An excellent post. Good luck this November! I’ll be writing with you… Then again I’d be writing anyway, Nanowrimo is my favourite time of year! I mean November, OBVIOUSLY.


  2. I am also doing NaNoWriMo again this year. I managed 35k the first time, 42k last year and hope to complete the challenge this year, but with a new puppy who knows. Thanks for the luck and I wish you the same. If you fancy a new NaNoWriMo buddy you will find me under the handle Yorkshire Belle 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.