Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Nanowrimo Tips and Resources


We're rapidly approaching November 1, which kicks off one of the most insanely fun writing ideas ever invented: National Novel Writing Month (also known as Nanowrimo). If you've never heard of it, or if you have but you've blacked it all out of your memory, Nanowrimo is an effort to write 50,000 words between November 1 and 30. If you reach that goal, you win.

Have I won, you ask? No. Then again, I write for a living at my day job, so I can only do so much writing at night. But I have learned some Nano-related tricks to help me reach a higher word count. And so, I offer up some great Nanowrimo resources for you as you consider whether you're going to enter November madness with the rest of us!

GET STARTED

The official Nanowrimo Page - If you join no other page, join this one. It'll give you the official Nano updates, fill you in on local Nano groups in your area, help you find online writing buddies, and give you tools to keep track of your progress. It's a great feeling to see your word chart rise up toward the 50,000 mark.

Tips from Nanowrimo's Forums - includes research help, plotting, word count advice, an ideas bank to pick up characters and scenarios when you feel stuck, and more.

25 Things You Should Know About Nanowrimo - Chuck Wendig shares one of his classic 25 things lists. Yeah, there will be cursing. But Mr. Wendig is nothing if not honest and practical.

11 Ways to Prepare for Nanowrimo - Good advice to help you plan what to do before November 1 rolls around.


WRITER'S TOOLKIT

Writing a Novel Scene by Scene - A good general source of the types of scenes that make up a novel and how to approach writing them.

How to Get Ready for Nanowrimo - Basics from coming up with an idea, to working with characters, to planning out the plot

Media Bistro's Monster Links List - A long list of online links compiled by the kings of writing over at Media Bistro. Explore it in spurts. It's going to take a while, but well worth it.


SOCIAL MEDIA 

Facebook groups

Generally, you have to request to join these groups. But if you like connecting with others through Facebook, then you definitely want to find a group to participate in, such as:

Nanowrimo 2012 group
Nanowrimo 2013 support group

Blog tools

Word count meter - You can add this widget to your blog so your readers can kick your butt when you fall behind. Or cheer you on when you soar above!

Twitter

Nanowrimo's Twitter account - Why, yes, you can get the madness in 140 characters or less.
Nanowrimo Sprints - Get prompts to do word sprints (aiming to hit a set word count in a set time)
Nanowrimo Word Wars - More word sprints

Your local group may have a Twitter account too, and keep an eye out for hashtags that help you keep track of what others are saying. I don't have a list of hashtags to suggest. You know how they evolve. Just stop by #mywana, #amwriting, and the official Nanowrimo account to look for the hashtags others are using.

Now, you share:  If you have resources you have found helpful for writing in general, or specifically for Nanowrimo, share them in the comments for your fellow writers. And stop by the blog or visit me on Twitter at @chippermuse to let me know how your writing is going!

Happy November madness to you all!

And don't forget... If you want a taste of my fiction writing, check out the short story anthology that my writing buddies and I published recently. It's a collection of eight speculative fiction tales with touches of humor, tragedy, and horror thrown in to keep you reading. Buy it on Amazon here!

Copyright (c) 2013 by M.A. Chiappetta. All rights reserved.

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