Getting My NanoWrimo on!


Nanowrimo is write… err um… right around the corner and I will be diving with both feet.  My fingers are crossed that I will complete my first draft of book 4 in The Matilda series.  This will be my 6th attempt at it and even if I don’t get it done during Nanowrimo, the story will be written.

I promise you it is so!

Anyway, I thought I’d share some tips on the process that seem to work for me.

  • Number 1, have fun! I have beaten myself up on previous Nanos because I didn’t get as much done as I planned.  That’s just silly as this is supposed to fun.  Stressful, sure but still fun.
  • Number 2, have an outline for the story. Now, maybe don’t follow it but have one on hand.  It really helps with those writer block moments.
  • Number 3, if the characters want to do something besides what’s on your outline, let them have at it! The moments that the characters are telling me their story and not the one I planned are the writing experiences I have enjoyed the most.
  • Number 4, hit some of those write-ins if they’re available in our area. You get a chance to talk with other writers who are going through the same experience as you.  You can root them on when they hit a tough spot and you’re still flying along and vice versa.  My most wordy days were when I went to these.  Bonus, you get out of the house.
  • Number 5, I can’t recommend those 10-minute writing exercises first thing in the day enough. If you leave yourself at a strange stopping point the day before, these exercises can free up your brain by poking at something else. I plan to write a poem every day for my exercise.
  • Number 6, don’t finish that action scene, that conversation or chapter when you finish for the day. Your brain will keep poking at it and you’ll be able to dive right in the next day.
  • Number 7, don’t worry about low word count days. Sometimes you’ll blast through a ton of words and other days you’ll be lucky to get 100 down.
  • Number 8 is the most important one besides Number 1. Completing that first draft is the best thing you can do.  You may get discouraged and think its garbage but you know what? You got it done.  You wrote a book.   That is amazing all by itself.

Now, these are mostly for a preexisting project.  Maybe I’ll write another of these for new projects.

It could happen…

Author: jongraylang

Novel Writer, Screenwriter, Filmmaker & occasionally an Actor. Handy with a Sword, Ukulele, and Skis. Author of Nun With a Gun: The Town with No Name, The Matilda, Twistin' Matilda, Black Matilda, and Secret Matilda. Writer of the upcoming Sci-Fi sequel, Waltzing Matilda.

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