As requested by a friend, I have put together her a list of things that will help you with this year’s National Novel Writing Month. I have completed only two, but I think that you guys might find these tools and supplies useful. Nano can seem like an overwhelming task…and it can be your first time or if you aren’t prepared.
In this post, you will find a variety of tool and supplies ranging from actual writing gear to apps to reminders to keep yourself happy and healthy during the strenuous activity of writing 50 k Plus words in 31 days.
The Offical NanoWriMonth Web site is a must! It has tracking, badges, games and community’s that will help you out a lot.
Printables: Getting everything set up for your novel can be daunting. Characters, setting, plotting and structure? I recommend A Small Bird Organizes: Novel Writing Kit. Yes, it does cost $12.50 but it had everything that you could possibly need. Another Great one is byAuthorsZoo. For free Printables check out this post on Finished Book.
Tracker Page: These come up closer to nano but it will tell you exactly how many words you need to write each day to get to your goal.
All of your Notes: In the picture above you can see that I still do a lot of my thoughts in a notebook. Always keep your notes in your writing space or with you wherever you chose to write. If you ever feel in a flop, going back to them can be super helpful and inspiring.
Spotify playlists. It’s amazing how music can keep you going. I make writing playlists but I also listen to other peoples. I prefer music with no words, classical or instrumental is less distracting for me.
Sound Fuel: This directory is great and will give you playlists on youtube based on genre.
Forest App. This nifty little app is a lifesaver. You set a time limit and it will turn everything else on your phone silent until that time period it up. It will buckle you down and really focus you. Of course, you can whitelist things that you’re using like your playlists. (iPhone app here)
Some kind of Cloud or Drop Box. Don’t be caught it that place where you write everything and then have a computer issue and lose everything. It’s the worst feeling ever. You can save on google docs for free or even download the free version of DropBox. These are both nice because you can access them everywhere too, including on your phone.
Writing Groups: Don’t be afraid to hit up one of the writing groups in your area. You can find them here on the Nanowrimo site. Meeting with other writers and talking about your work can really get the juices moving. If you don’t have one in your area, Facebook and Tumblr have writing groups online too.
Let your friends and family know: I can’t give you a link for this but your phone contacts should really serve you just fine. Let your friends and family know what you are doing and how important it is to you and why. Writing 1,700 words a day might seem doable -and it is- but when you fall behind by one or two days catching up can be hard! The more people you let know the more they will understand why you’re not going out. Not to mention that it makes you more accountable.
Creating Your Space
Creating your space is important. If you can make your very own little space where you can sit down and write. Make sure that you have everything that you need in that one space so that you’re not constantly being pulled out of your flow.
Anchor your goal into your workspace. Get rid of anything that pulls you away from your writing.
- Declutter: Is it useful? Does it help you?
- Make sure you’re chair is comfortable and good on your posture and back
- Check your lighting. Replace fluorescent bulbs that will wear on your eyes. Full spectrum light bulbs work nicely.
- Feng Shui: I know it sounds stupid but place your chair in a commanding position. You are this stories creator. You should feel powerful.
Things to have in your space:
- Snacks: Always have brain food while you’re writing. I like almonds and fruit.
- Don’t forget to hydrate. Set a timer if you have to and make sure that you have water in reach at all times. The better your body is functioning, the more effectively you’ll write.
- Notes: Keep your notes and your inspiration close so that you can continue to reference.
- Coffee or tea: No brainer. We’re writers. We need this.
- Your planner or tracker: If you’re a goal setter like me I know what I want to hit and when. I keep these close. If you’re looking for some planner stickers check out Pretty Sloth Party
- Motivational material: I personally like having motivational materials and quotes to keep myself going. For some motivational quotes and writing inspiration check out my Pinterest or just google “Motivational Writing Quotes”.
Don’t forget to get up: Get up and MOVE. This is super important You need to get up and move. I personally do writing sprints of twenty minutes to a half hour. Then I will get up and move around. After I’m done for the day I take a half hour walk at least or go for a run. A healthy body helps with a healthy mind.
Telling yourself the story: Your first draft is just telling yourself the story. Don’t be discouraged if it’s not perfect. It’s not supposed to be.
DO NOT EDIT: Enough said. There will be time for that in December.