Michille: Getting Ready to NaNo

NaNo-2012Piggyback.  Yesterday, Elizabeth posted about her focus for NaNo. I’m not planning to do it this year, unless it can be stretched to editing 50,000 words, instead of writing them. But I am reminded of planning that I have done in the past to prep for it.

One of my favorite writing blogs, Writers Write, posted an organizer that led to a brainstorming worksheet and 30 tips (with lots of links for other helps). From the Writers Write blog, I found some resources that are on the NaNo website. Like the Reference Desk. I never knew it was there. Rather than spending time noodling around on the internet doing research, post a question on the reference desk and another writer might have the answer. Want to know how to rig a 500 gallon propane tank for explosion? Need information on growing up in a Turkish Cypriot family in London? Need to know how to milk a cat (really?)? Post your research question and get an answer (maybe – no one seems to know how to milk a cat).

There is also a NaNo Prep page that has useful resources and lots of good sponsor offers. There are young novelist workbooks on their site, too. They are targeted to students, but I found some helpful things in the high school version. Writing buddies. I never knew there was such a thing.

There are a lot of community NaNo happenings all over the world – all over Africa, Asia, Canada, Europe and I only scrolled a third of the way down the region page. If you like in Chicago, the Northbrook Public Library has a NaNo program. There is a Night of Writing Dangerously in San Francisco. There are several write-in opportunities in my area. I’m not sure if I’m going to do one. As I mentioned on Nancy’s post  from a previous prep, the only time I went to one in my town, the writers all had weird furry hats on shaped like animals, except the guy with the reptile on his shoulder. Not my cuppa.

Did you know Water for Elephants (Sarah Gruen) was a NaNo novel? So was The Night Circus (Erin Morgenstern), Fangirl (Rainbow Rowell), THREE Marissa Meyer books, Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress.

What are you doing to prepare?


10 thoughts on “Michille: Getting Ready to NaNo

  1. I’m not doing NaNo this year, either, Michille (or any year, for that matter), but it occurs to me that since I’m just starting book 3 of this endless trilogy, and—without actually participating in NaNo—I could urge myself to keep the NaNo principles in the back of my mind and just write my pants off. I’ve already rewritten my opening five pages three times, which does not auger well for the future, imo, so maybe if I just go at it heads-down for a month and don’t look back, I can shake off my doubts and get some story down.

    • Go at it heads-down. I like that. I also like that you are obviously safe from the wild fires (but you’re south of that). Prayers for you if you have friends in wine country. We’re Naked Wine angels and we know that several of our favorites didn’t fare well. Again, prayers.

  2. I like Kay’s idea, and will also plan to “write my pants off” while not doing NaNo proper. One thing I do love about it is the forum community, and opportunities to jump into impromptu word challenges, etc. Makes writing more sociable and less isolated. But sadly, I don’t get enough work done sociably, get much more done with isolation.

    As to how to milk a cat – anesthetize her first :-)!

    • Anesthetize – right? You have enough going on (as do all of us). NaNo can inspire without actually doing it. Let’s use it to push us to write (or edit in my case) more hours in November than we would normally.

  3. No NaNo for mer either. I’m in editing mode. The second draft of this book should be about 50K longer than the first, but it would be impossible to keep track of what’s new and what was old.

    I love the idea behind it, and how many kids it pulls into writing.

  4. I’m not sure what I’ll do. I have at least two perfectly good stories that need to be finished, and I don’t want to rush them. I do want to make progress, though . . . .

    Milk a cat? First, lay in a supply of bandages. My goodness, what a thought. I think there’s a good reason why cat cheese has never been popular. (-: I see there are a couple of YouTube videos about it, though. Hmmm. I haven’t got the courage to click.

  5. I’ve decided to do it this year. Since “getting back into writing,” I’ve learned lots of great plot/story stuff like Lisa Cron’s “Story Genius,” but I’ve done little actual writing (I have also changed my story around umpteen times — yes, that is a number). I think I need a little carrot dangling, even if the carrot is “today is a writing day and umpteen other people are doing it.”

    I plan to go heads-down, too, not worry about editing until I get a first draft done, which flies in the face of how I’ve written everything thus far, but how I’ve written everything thus far has meant I haven’t FINISHED anything, so time for something new.

    I’ve already gone through my calendar and marked which days will be non-writing days (Thanksgiving weekend and a few days my dad is here when I know I won’t be able to carve out time). I’ve figured out what my daily word counts need to be based on that. I want to spend this week laying out my story in a little more detail so I have a plan (I’m a horrible pantser). And I want to hit Nov. 1st on the ground, running. Fast.

  6. Pingback: Elizabeth: NaNo Countdown – 1 Week To Go – Eight Ladies Writing

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