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NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo Tip #13: Save Your Work

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched earlier this month as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our thirteenth tip is: Save Your Work. There is nothing sadder than losing a whole day’s work and inspiration because your computer crashes. We got this idea from Grammarly. They recommend backing up your work using cloud-based storage tools or simply emailing yourself the document as an attachment. Here is more from the blog:

Save early. Save often. Save in at least two places. The power might go out in the middle of your daily writing session. You could drop your laptop on a hard surface. There are a thousand possible calamities that could befall you, but saving on your primary computer may not be enough. If your machine breaks down or gets a virus, you could potentially lose the whole manuscript.

NaNoWriMo Tip #12: Take a Walk

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched earlier this month as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our twelfth tip is: Take a Walk. Author Philip Roth used to walk a half mile for each page he wrote and you should too. Getting fresh air will give your eyes a much needed break from the computer screen and it will help rejuvenate your mind. It’s a great way to let your mind wander and think about your characters and your story without getting stumped by a blank screen.

NaNoWriMo Tip # 11: Assign Yourself a Word Count

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched earlier this month as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our eleventh tip is: Assign Yourself a Word Count. While this can sound a bit cold, it is actually a great technique to help you meet your writing goals. Just think you are writing 50,000 words in 30 days, so you are going to have to make a serious commitment to getting words down on the page. Don’t let this big number overwhelm you. Break it down into daily assignments. Write 1,000 words on the protagonist finding the murder victim. Write the 500 word monologue for your heroine’s opening act. If you do this kind of focused assigning every day you’ll have a lot of content to work with which can be woven into a cohesive novel.

NaNoWriMo Tip #10: Work on Point of View

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched earlier this month as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our tenth tip is: Work on Point of View. Every character in your book will have a different perspective and you should try to capture these varying viewpoints. Writer’s Digest has some great point of view exercises that can help you think through a scene from the differing viewpoints. Here is one example: Read more

NaNoWriMo Tip #9: Make a Soundtrack For Your Book

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched earlier this month as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our ninth tip is: Make a Soundtrack For Your Book. Music can really help inspire a mood and a tone, so you should think about the kind of music that is playing in your book. What music does your protagonist listen to? What music is playing in the settings? You may or may not identify music as part of your story, but knowing if you’re working in the realm of Chopin or the Wu-Tang Clan can help you tell the story. Your main characters’ relationship with music can help connect them emotionally or intellectually. You can decide if it is inspiring or distracting to play music as you write.

NaNoWriMo Tip #8: Don’t Check Your Email

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched earlier this month as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our eighth tip is: Don’t Check Your Email. You need to focus on your writing and if you sit down at your computer to write and get sidetracked answering emails, the hours will tick on and your page will still be empty. Close out your web browsers and only pay attention to your novel. Try to avoid the Internet at all costs. If you need to look something up, make a note and do it later on when you are browsing the Internet and not working on your book.

NaNoWriMo Tip #7: Develop Your Protagonist

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched earlier this month as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our seventh tip is: Develop Your Protagonist. Your protagonist is the central figure in your story, so it is important to get his/her voice right. Figure out the protagonist’s motivations, their hinderances, how they are stifled by events in your story and the things that they do to overcome these issues. How do they think? How do they respond to the events in your story? Do they fail? Succeed? You can use your character outline to help get inside their head.

NaNoWriMo Tip #6: Don’t Think Like an Editor (Yet)

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched last week as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our sixth tip is: Don’t Think Like an Editor. While thinking like an editor is a useful part of the writing process later on, it can get in the way when you are first setting out to write your novel. Let yourself write and see where the story takes you. You may go back and throw out a lot of what you have written, but if you are critiquing your work in the early phase you may disrupt the creative flow.

NaNoWriMo Tip #5: Develop Your Novel’s Plot

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched last week as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our fifth tip is simple: Develop Your Novel’s Plot. Develop a plot outline that establishes how the story will get from point A to point Z. Make a checklist and add detours. MIT has a great collection of plot exercises specifically designed for different kinds of tales ranging from adventure and pursuit to forbidden love and discovery designed to help you develop your plot.

NaNoWriMo Tip #4: Establish a Setting

nanowrimoNational Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) launched last week as writers around the globe try to write a 50,000-word novel draft in a single month.

To help the GalleyCat readers taking this challenge, we will be offering NaNoWriMo advice throughout the month. Last year, 341,375 participants wrote a novel in 30 days through the NaNoWriMo program. The writing marathon has generated more than 250 traditionally published novels, according to the organizers.

Our fourth tip is simple: Establish a Setting. Think about where your story takes place and what role it will play in your novel. Is it just a background or does it play a role in your story? Describe details about the place that the story takes place. Is it a city? Is it a house? Is it an office building? What kind of paint is on the walls? Is there a garden? Make a list of everything that you can see in your setting. You can refer to these details throughout the writing process. When you do incorporate setting into your story, be sure to introduce it in a way that is natural to your writing.

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