Hello, friends near and far! I’m back from my October Hiatus. It was really lovely to have some time off from blogging. I didn’t get quite as much editing done as I’d have liked, but I have done a lot of plotting for my newest story!
Yes, that’s right: the story I’m going to be writing in November. As November 1st is literally right around the corner, here’s some last-minute suggestions for NaNoPrep. Other bloggers and writers and twitter users-have been throwing around NaNoPrep ideas all month long, so I thought I’d join before #Preptober was entirely over. Ya know, for the writers out there who are frantically plotting and planning as the last hours before November 1st tick by.
1. Write a Synopsis
On the NaNoWriMo website, there’s a place for you to add a synopsis to your novel. I found that writing a super brief (and not very good) synopsis helped me feel more prepared for November. Here’s my synopsis if you’re interested:
Lewis Montgomery is fourteen hours from home. He doesn’t know anyone, and he’s not even sure what building his first class is in tomorrow – and the lights in the bathroom keep flickering. Transitioning into adulthood has enough challenges, but add in disappearances and creatures that only he can see, and Lewis begins to think he’s going mad.
Katie Atwood is psyched to be a sophomore. She knows this campus like the back of her hand, and she’s ready for a non-eventful year full of studying and reading. Then Lewis sits next to her in bio class, and the world goes to hell. Strange happenings seem to follow this boy like a shadow, and Katie’s not sure if she wants to stick around to find out what’s really happening.
A college campus, some non-human beings, and a boy and a girl who remain platonic friends.
Okay, so that’s a very bad synopsis. I haven’t written the book yet (duh), but that will give you a general idea.
2. Design a Cover
On the NaNoWriMo website, there’a also a place to upload a cover for your novel. (Obviously, if you traditionally publish, you don’t get to create your own real cover for your novel.) It’s a lot of fun to have a picture to go with your ideas. It also helps you visualize your novel as an actual, completed, shelf-ready book – instead of just a bunch of random ideas floating around in your head.
3. Make a Playlist (or three)
Y’all know the drill. If you write to music, a great way to feel ready for NaNoWriMo (that doesn’t require too much brain power) is to create a writing playlist or two. Or three. Sometimes it’s helpful to create a couple, each with a different mood. (“Angsty music,” “epic battle sequence,” “sad music,” etc etc.)
[if you don’t understand this gif, then feel free to unsubscribe. Just kidding, please don’t. Rather, do a Google search for “Veggie Tales,” and educated yourself.]
4. Goal, Motivation, and Conflict
This is perhaps the most important. There’s a snazzy writing book out there called GMC: Goal, Motivation, and Conflict. Confession: I’ve never read the book. HOWEVER, I love the idea: each character needs a goal, a reason for wanting that goal, and something that stands in their way of achieving it. The best characters are active characters: they’re working towards something throughout the story. They make things happen. (As opposed to passive characters, who just kinda react to events that happen to them.) So part of planning my novel is figuring out what my main characters want, why they want it, and what is hindering them. Goal, motivation, and Conflict.
Good luck! Follow me on NaNoWriMo (username: SharpieBeth) and follow my progress! If you’re also doing NaNo, I’d love to hear your last-minute NaNoPrep tips!