It’s that time of year again. The time when I start doing everything to prep for NaNoWriMo except actually outline my story (or, in this case, stories). I’ve downloaded calendars. Lots of calendars. All the calendars, some of them from 2009. (For wallpapers, you see). I’ve figured out how to do my wordcount, what wordcount I want to do, and what days I’m going to assume I won’t get any writing done. I downloaded a new wordcount spreadsheet, took it apart into its component parts, and reintegrated parts into my own.
All of this is very fun, and most of it – the part that isn’t the wallpapers, at least – is rather useful. I have a plan for my numbers. But now what?
And that’s the question, isn’t it? What do you do before November, to make NaNoWriMo flow smoother?
Among my list of things (other than “play on the forums and put all sorts of lovely calendars in rotation for my wallpaper”) I can/will/should do to prepare:
* Clean up other writing queue as much as possible. This is *cough* not the time to have a wildly successful prompt call. That being said, I’m going to get as much of said prompt call done before Nov 1., then pick up on Dec. 1. Or 2.
* Know what you’re doing. This can take a number of forms, but I can’t imagine stepping into Nov. 1st with no idea at all what my project was going to be.
For me in previous years, this involved notecards, outlines, scribbles – this year, it’s a bit more complicated. Step one is pick four projects, since I’m doing a series of stories for submission. Step two is coming up with an idea for, and then outlining, each story. And I’ve discovered, thanks to @Inventrix, beat sheets (here), so now I have a whole new thing to do.
* Make a work space. I have a workspace, but I’ve been working on making it more comfortable, more tidy, and more mine. If I’m going to spend an hour a night there for a month, I want it to be nice.
I even, thanks to a suggestion from @cluudle, have candles. Pretty flame & a nice vanilla scent! And I’ve been working on making the area as ergonomic as possible.
* Plan for the inevitable; plan for the family; plan for life. Last year, I wrote 84,000+ words – and nearly forgot Christmas. So this year, I’ve set a smaller goal, and am working hard at remembering important things like husband, cats… and Christmas.
What about you? What do you do to prepare for NaNoWriMo, or for any large project?
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