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Submitted on
October 10, 2012
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Preparing for NaNoWriMo Part 2

Wed Oct 10, 2012, 9:35 AM
In my last journal, we discussed the best ways to prepare for NaNo and included a couple tips on how to make that writing go a little faster and smoother.  Well, now it's time to discuss how to NOT fail at NaNoWriMo.  Because just as there are some really grand ideas on how to prepare yourself and keep yourself on task during the month, there are also going to be those times of self doubt and using excuses to not write.  For NaNo, any of those excuses are completely unacceptable [well, except for life threatening excuses - those are allowed].

So once again, I reached out to the Lit Community to find out exactly why other deviants failed at NaNo, or what they found to NOT work for them and compiled it all together in a pretty little list like last time.

What Not to Do

:bulletpurple: Don't get sucked in Wikipedia, TVtropes or any other sites like that.  In fact turn off your WiFi so the internet isn't a distraction.  All your research should be done before NaNo, so this shouldn't be an issue.  If you REALLY need to use the internet, have one specific task in mind and as soon as you're done with that, close the browser window.

:bulletpurple: Don't stress if you miss a day.  Just tack a little extra onto the next four days' goals and you'll be back on track.  If you miss a week, you may be in trouble.  This is where having a schedule comes in handy.  No not a schedule of what time you're going to write, but knowing days you will definitely be writing and what days you'll be unable to due to prior engagements.

:bulletpurple: Don't edit as you go.  Write what you write and leave it at that.  There'll be plenty of time later to edit.  But during November, DO NOT edit anything that you write.  You'll get stuck editing and not writing. 

:bulletpurple: Do not, I repeat, DO NOT backspace!  Well, alright you can do it a
little, but only here and there.  Don't doubt your writing and leave the
editing/changes for later.

:bulletpurple: Don't worry about the quality of the writing.  The goal is to get 50k words down.  Editing word choice and grammar will come later.

:bulletpurple: Don't be discouraged after the first week when the words aren't flowing as smoothly as they were at the start.  Just stick to it and push yourself through.  Consider jumping a couple scenes ahead if need be.

:bulletpurple: Don't be lazy.  Keep at it.  Join a group (either local to your area or online) that will push you.  Because people you know that aren't writers won't push like your writer friends will. 

:bulletpurple: Don't do NaNo instead of homework.  That's just asking for trouble.

:bulletpurple: Avoid becoming sick or getting in car accidents.  They will kill your word count quickly.

:bulletpurple: Don't let excuses get in the way. There's a REASON they put NaNo in November, with all the holiday chaos and while people are still in school. There will always be a reason you're TOO BUSY, but you have to push these reasons aside and make time to write anyway.

:bulletpurple: Have a baby due on November 8th [Thank you Beccalicious]

I'm Stuck! What do I do?!

Your brain has been attacked by the evilness that is writers' block or brain freeze.  Obviously, this isn't a good thing during NaNo, so you're just gonna have to work yourself through it.  I'm a firm believer in just sitting there and writing whatever comes to mind until you get back into the groove, but here are a couple ideas that come from other deviants on how to get out of that rut your brain just fell into.

:bulletpurple: Death by Shovel.  Take a character (any one will do) and kill them with a shovel.  That should get things moving along.
:bulletpurple: Natural disaster.  Mother Nature is a bitch.  Let her wreak havoc on your characters.  Storm of the century style!
:bulletpurple: Step back and write a quickie flash fiction scene of something that's been floating around in your head.  Get that out and then get back to work.  Even if these scenes aren't used in your final product or even toward your NaNo word count.  They're great ways to get your creative juices flowing and those words flowing on to the screen.
:bulletpurple: Change your location.  Not your story location.  Your ACTUAL location.  Go somewhere else.  If you usually write indoors, try going outside.  If staying at home isn't an option, go to a local park, your public library, a coffee house.  A different place will spark fresh ideas simply because you're in new surroundings.

Once Again a HUGE Thank You to All the Deviants that Made this Feature Possible

TarienCole, WTFgirl, AzeeraTheNinja, kittykittyhunter, forbiddenhero, Thy-Robocop, damina, AeternusVotum, TMCanada, evil83angel, MeganLawler94, Loza-Muse, thorns, TheSkaBoss, SkysongMA, PinkyMcCoversong, Nekolai, ozzla, BloodrainFireDawn, The-Monoblos and AspiredWriter

Part 2 of the NaNo articles. This one focuses on what you shouldn't do during NaNo.

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WTFgirl Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
[link] link to the NanoWrimo chat room.
AspiredWriter Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2012
one site you forgot to mention... DeviantArt!!! the biggest distraction for most dA NaNoers.

i'm sorry but are those three points one and the same? don't edit don't backspace (i.e. don't edit) and don't edit... um ok we'll not edit :iconcryingplz: (i probably will a bit though, can't help it)

this does'nt seem to me to be as good a list as the first one hmm....
GrimFace242 Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012   Writer
This is why I turn my WiFi off when I'm writing. If I don't, I'll end up hanging on dA and not writing. And that's bad.

I was trying to be very clear about the NOT editing part.

And I agree. The first list was much better, but it's also the more important list.
ApocalypticAngel4792 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012  Student Writer
This year I have to miss the first day of writing, but I won't let it bring me down. Like you said, just adding a few more words a day to your overall schedule or pulling a double-day can get you on track. If I miss a week though, I will be in trouble: With 2 research papers and finals in early December to plan for, I have to get finished as quickly as possible. Failure is not an option!
Euxiom Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012
Yeah seriously people.


Personally, I like having the internet up because taking a moment to chat with people, or keeping a tab open to a dictionary/thesaurus is real handy for my writing process.
GrimFace242 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012   Writer
I don't have a problem with TVTropes. Wikipedia is my evil. It's like crack to me. I'm completely addicted.
Euxiom Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012
Well, I guess it just flipped for you then.
XxXXzZ Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much for making these journals! It should be really helpful, and I'll be sure not to give birth in the next few months.
GrimFace242 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012   Writer
You're very welcome. I had a blast making the journals, too.
SurrealCachinnation Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012   Writer

I can't wait.

I like the shovel bit.
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