Writer’s Corner: Winning Nanowrimo

By Rebecca Lang

Note: This is a condensed version of my talk. For a full version and explanation. see my four-part blog on Winning Nanowrimo. I’ll be posting every weekend in September, starting today.

Winning Nanowrimo: The Challenge

What is Nanowrimo?

  • National Novel Writing Month
  • One novel/ 50,000 words (200 pages) in November

Nano calanderHow It Works

  • Make a commitment
  • Let go of quality, focus on quantity
  • No going back and re-writing/ editing
  • Discipline, focus, and endurance

Office Worker with Mountain of Paperwork

Set a Goal

  • Doesn’t have to be a novel
  • Doesn’t have to be 50,000 words
  • Stretch yourself, don’t stress yourself

set and reach goal concept

Think of a Reward

  • Tangible: Not “the satisfaction of writing a novel.”
  • Motivator during tough times
  • Achievement or effort?
  • Multiple rewards? Daily? Weekly? Milestones?
  • You need to celebrate

reward

Make a Plan

  • Where and when do you best write?
  • Can you adapt if conditions aren’t ideal?
  • How efficient are you at writing?
  • How can you fit writing into your schedule?
  • What sacrifices will you need to make?

timerCreate an Outline

  • Brainstorm ideas for novel
  • Organize ideas into a logical sequence
  • Doesn’t have to be permanent: go off script
  • Book in a Month by Victoria Lynn Schmidt

contents 2Crunchtober

  • “October is crunch time.”
  • Practice: 500 words a day in October
  • I use it for brainstorming/ outlining

37310-Dear-OctoberGather Support

  • Affirmation, Accountability, Mentorship, Company, Competition, Free Time
  • Nanowrimo.org: Word Tracker, Pep Talks, Find Local Writers, Prizes

writer groupMy Group

  • Meet twice in October in order to goal-set and brainstorm.
  • Meet at least four times in November to check in and write together.
  • Send out inspirational emails every day.
  • Celebrate together at the end of the month.

Your-heartInterested? If so, email me at reddragonfly1285@yahoo.com by October 31, 2015.


OUTLINE #1: PLOT

What’s your story about?

List at least ten key events that happen throughout the story

Event #1: Inciting Incident

Event #2

Event #3

Event #4: Reversal

Event #5

Event #6

Event #7: Reversal

Event #8

Event #9: Climax

Event #10: Resolution

How do these events connect to each other?

Problems or Questions:


OUTLINE #2: CHARACTER

Ask your main characters the following questions:

What do they look like? (Age, gender, important physical qualities)

Who/ what do they love/ hate? (Stakes)

What do they desire? (Motivation)

What do they fear? (Obstacle)

What do they believe in? (Theme)

What is their background/ history? (Depth)

What is their greatest secret? (Surprise)

Don’t forget to come up with an antagonist.


OUTLINE #3: SETTING

Decide on the General Setting.

Physical Landscape

  • city, suburb, or country?
  • land and water
  • nature: plants and animals
  • buildings and man-made environments

Era/ Culture

  • clothes: how does it express their culture?
  • objects: what things are commonly used?
  • technology, politics, religion

Time Frame

  • how long does the story take place: days? months? years?
  • any noticeable time gaps?

Seasons/ Weather

  • clothes: how does it protect them from the elements?
  • holidays
  • dangers

Try to come up with 3 Specific Places

Room, house, café, train, fort, spaceship, forest, etc.

What objects do you see? How might the hero use them?

How might this setting help advance the plot?

Advertisements
This entry was posted in nanowrimo, Writer's Corner and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com 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 )

Google+ photo

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

Connecting to %s