And by that I mean do you plan to participate in the once-yearly National Novel Writing Month held in November? I’ve participated for two years in a row, and have to say, it’s a blast. Not only does it give me the freedom to write crap (which I do, but which is also much more easily fixable than a blank page) but it also forces me to pound out a rough draft in record time, without allowing me to think too hard about plot.
For a pantser like me, it’s completely exhilarating. And absolutely fulfilling. Because normally, it takes me a lot longer to complete a manuscript—even a rough draft. I just have too many distractions in my life, and pushing myself hard for one month of the year helps narrow my focus just long enough to accomplish something seriously awesome in a short amount of time.
So yes. I NaNo. And yes, I’ve figured out that it goes a lot smoother when I do some advance planning. And by some, I mean a small amount of plot structuring and some character developing.
This month I have goals to:
a) Write an outline that consists of maybes. (Because even a pantser needs a page of ideas that tell her where the story might go if I get stuck.)
b) Figure out my main characters, who they are, what they want, and why they can’t have it. (Because if I do that, maybe I won’t need the stinkin outline.)
c) Decide on a general location where this story might be set—even if it’s fictional. (Because that just makes it easier to see in my head.)
d) Figure out how in the heck I’m going to fit writing an entire 50,000 word novel into November this year, because my schedule’s already looking INSANE. This might require making a writing schedule that works around everything else. *gulps* Can we say challenging?
Writers: I recommend you try this once-a-year exercise dubbed NaNoWriMo, if for no other reason than to stimulate your brain.
Non-writers: Is there something you do once a year which stimulates you into temporary mass productivity? Tell me about it.