November Nostalgia for NaNoWriMo by Cheyenne
I still remember the first time I ever participated in NaNo. This was, in fact, only a few years ago when I was still trying to understand how to write decent sentences for a story. As a new writer, doing NaNo in 2013 was one of the best writing decisions I ever made.
Since it was my first year, and I had only heard of NaNo a month before it began, I did not seriously consider detailed planning and analysis of the kind of story I wanted to write as I do now with my NaNo novels. In fact, I did not have an idea at all of what I wanted to write. I was going in to the month as if I were blindfolded. I had no clue what direction I saw the story going in, and I figured that I could wing it and reach my goal of ninety-thousand words by the end of the month. Obviously, for a first-timer, that seems like a daunting goal. Needless to say, it was not achieved. However, I still wrote every single day; I just did not write the amount of words I should have been each day (approximately three-thousand words).
The prompts helped tremendously when it came to working through my NaNo story. Without them, I doubt I would have gotten past the first page. If you are participating in NaNoWriMo this year, I highly recommend taking a look at each of the daily prompts me and the other Editors have compiled for the year. The prompts are unique and disordered, meant to give you a sudden burst of inspiration when you need it most, and they are posted one by one on the club’s blog. Remember, NaNo is about quantity, not quality, and these prompts can help you reach your goal if you have the drive to stick to it.
NaNo was designed to get writers into the habit of writing, regardless of how creative or inspired a writer may feel on any given day. It also seems that NaNo starts during one of the most hectic months of the year for many people. Thanksgiving is coming, family members visit, Christmas shopping starts, final exams are around the corner, and so much more bombards us in our daily lives during this month. However, you have to realize that if you do not learn how to adjust your writing schedule around your hectic life, you will never be able to truly enjoy being a writer. Life, no matter what, will always seem hectic, and it will always feel like you have to make time in your schedule to write. This is what NaNo is for; it was made to force you to write no matter what kind of ideas you have for a story (or lack thereof)!
Even though it’s not a requirement, consider making a plan of what you want to write. If you’re not the planning type, at least consider a basic plot idea so you have a base to build upon as the month progresses. It can be difficult to find your way through to the end without so much as plot to go by, so take the time to think of an actual story to write for the month, if anything. Regardless of what you do, remember to always enjoy your writing! Good luck achieving your writing goals!