That's right, National Novel Writing Month is almost here, and smart writers know, now is the time to start preparing. (If you're a Write Practice reader, I know you must be a smart writer.)
With that in mind, I've put together a list of ten catalysts that will help you write your novel in a month. And don't worry, we have many more resources coming to get you ready for November, including a printable 2016 NaNoWriMo calendar, a book idea workshop, and more!
Catalysts to Win NaNoWriMo
You might be able to win NaNoWriMo without these creativity catalysts, but it will be so much harder (especially without number one!).
Have more fun, finish faster, and write a better novel with these ten catalysts (they all begin with “C”).
- Chocolate. This is first for a reason. When you’re killing yourself trying to write your novel in a month, unlimited chocolate will quite possibly be the only thing that keeps you going.
- Commitment. Not just from you, but from your friends and family, too. Completing NaNoWriMo requires a huge amount of time every day. If your friends and family aren’t willing to support you, keep you focused, and hold you accountable, you will have a hard time.
- Community. “You are the average of the five people closest to you,” said Jim Rohn, and this is especially true during NaNoWriMo. Find writing friends who have high word counts! You’ll find your word count goes up through osmosis.
- Check-ins. It’s hard to finish a book in isolation, especially during NaNoWriMo. Give a close friend or mentor permission to check in with you and hold you accountable to finishing your word count every day.
- Creative Inspiration. Sometimes you run out of ideas. When that happens, things like writing prompts and creativity exercises can get you writing again.
- Consequences. Create a consequence if you don’t meet your daily word count, something that will really hurt, like giving up your favorite video game/TV show until you finish your book or writing a check to an organization you hate. This will keep you focused like nothing else!
- Calendar. Did you know that by the end of week one, you’ll need to have written 8,335 words to be on track to win NaNoWriMo. And 20,004 words by the end of week 2. Stay on track with a NaNoWriMo calendar (like this one).
- Critique. Is your book idea interesting? Is your writing working? Get feedback on your book idea and first chapters as early as possible so you can write the rest of your book with confidence.
- Caffeine. Coffee, tea, cola, or Red Bull. Do we really need to back this up?
- Cozy Corner. Alright, we’re stretching the C thing here, but the point is, find somewhere cozy, comfortable, and calm where you can be creative, like a cranny in a coffee shop or a couch in a cubicle.
Are you participating in NaNoWriMo this year? Let us know in the comments section!
First, download and print the 1-page catalyst guide here.
Then, spend a few minutes thinking about an idea for your NaNoWriMo novel. Don't write, just think. What do you want to write about? What story sounds interesting to you right now? Take a walk, stare out the window, or just look off into space.
Finally, after you spend some time thinking about your idea, free write about your idea for fifteen minutes. When your time is up, post your idea in the comments section below. And if you post, be sure to give feedback on a few ideas from other writers.