Suppose for a second, I have convinced you to write a novel for NaNoWriMo. For those tuning in, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. It is a challenge where you write 50 thousand words in thirty days.

The rules of NaNoWriMo, states that it counts the story only. Outlines, character sheets, diagrams. They don’t count for your total word count. This is also able to be done before November, in October.

No matter if you Outline or Discovery Write, the way to be successful in writing for NaNo is in the prep. Preparing to write the story is how many people keep the quantity up for the length of time.

The Prep

I start my story with my idea. Having a set idea pushes you forward. The idea should be thought thoroughly through with different ideas on different conflicts, tensions, and emotions. The more the idea is flushed out, allows for a better shot of being successful for NaNo.

For me, what I do is I have my novel planned. I’m not a “Discovery Writer” and not an “Outliner.” I do what I have dubbed “Sign-Post-Outlining.” I discovery write to set points in the story. This allows me to have a plan, yet being able to have the freedom to see where the story takes me.

The way to NaNo success is the prep. Plan your story. Plan until you think you can’t plan any longer. The more you do, the more of a chance of success.

So for all of those who want to write a novel for NaNoWriMo. Prep your story. Plan it through.

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