November is National Novel Writing Month, a time when people across the world come together (albeit virtually) to stare into their computers and write 50,000 words in one month. So, when October rolls around, it’s time to get prepared. Preptober is a term that the writing community has given to this preparation period! So, how do you take full advantage of Preptober and get ready for NaNoWriMo? Let’s dig in.
Investigate Your Time
Why do people manage to write more when partaking in NaNoWriMo than on a regular month? The answer is this: They prioritise their writing. Now, it’s much easier to prioritise writing your novel when there is an end in sight (that end being December in this case). However, there is a way to keep that word count growing after November, and it helps for finding the time to write those 50,000 words too. That is the magic of Investigating Your Time. To do this, I would recommend downloading your copy of The Time to Write Workbook. With this workbook, you can learn how to break your week down, create a writing routine that works for you, understand writing areas that you would like to brush up on before November, and set goals. All of this for the price of a cup of coffee? That’s a win-win.
Create Your NaNoWriMo Survival Kit
Ah yes, the NaNoWriMo survival kit! They will all be a little different, but if you are looking for something to keep you going during those long writing hours, here is what I recommend:
1) A fresh notebook. Ah, the smell of the fresh notebook, there’s nothing like those clean pages just waiting to be filled!
2) Journal. Separate from the notebook, I like to keep a journal to work through any difficulties I am having with the process or personal things that might be keeping me from writing.
3) Caffeine. Because, well…obviously.
4) Candles. It’s all about that mood-setting!
Confirm Your Goals
The common goal for many NaNoWriMo writers is to hit 50,000 words in one month, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be your goal, or even, your only goal. Set your goals ahead of time, break them down and understand how you will achieve them within those four weeks. The Time to Write Workbook can really help with this, too.
Sign Up on the NaNoWriMo website
When you sign up on the official website, there is a lot to get involved with. From forums to stickers, it is well worth joining in on there and finding your local NaNoWriMo group too. Sharing the experience can make it fun.
Whether Plotting or Pantsing, Get Your Idea Ready
Time is precious, especially when you are trying to write 50,000 words in one month. Save yourself some time in advance by thinking about the writing that you are going to do. If you are not a plotter, you don’t have to turn into one suddenly, but it can help to get a rough outline of your idea down on paper.
Create Your Cover
One of my favourite things to do is to create a mock-up of a book cover on Canva. There’s even space on the NaNoWriMo website for you to share, so have a little fun and visualise that complete and final product.
Find Your Incentives
It’s time to find out what works for you in terms of incentives and rewards. The more you celebrate those words being written, the more likely you are to sit down next time – rewards are a big part of creating a writing habit, and a habit is precisely what is needed for NaNoWriMo! For me, I’ll be rewarding myself with Dairy Milk, cups of tea, and chapters of a good book.
Download Your Free Trackers!
Yep – if you are looking for a freebie to help you with NaNoWriMo, there’s one right here that I have created for you. Download your tracker/checklist today so that you can print it off and cross out those written words! I have made two, as I know some people like to move forward based on word count and others based on days of writing.
Click here to download a tracker based on writing days.
Click here to download a tracker based on word count.
You’ve got this writer.
I cannot wait to hear all about your NaNoWriMo project! Get in touch today to tell me what you are writing about. And, if you know of another writer who is also taking part, send this to them so that they can take full advantage of Preptober too.
Looking for a similar read? Check out the following:
3 Things I Did To Level Up My Writing Game
The Time Blocking Tools That Can Help You Write Your Novel
Tips and Tricks for Dealing With Procrastination