The Minimalist and Her Goals: Writing Sessions and NaNoWriMo Prep
“November is slowly approaching, and I’ve got all hands on deck trying to prepare for NaNoWriMo 2017. I’ve settled on an idea, I’ve set up my documents, and now I wait. These last few days of October, I want my writing focus to be on exercising my creativity, on writing shorts, playing with narrative. The excitement has begun to well up, and I’ve yet to utilize it to the best of my ability before the project actually begins. Around this time of year, I find that I want to challenge my writing, I want to implement all of the ideas that surface, and I want to continue to grow. It all begins with a little bit of prep and free writing to get things moving, then I can hunker down to make it everything I want it to be.”
“You’ve done it before, and you can do it again.” NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is certainly a challenge. Though, it is one that I’ve managed to complete a few times before. NaNoWriMo 2016 was my most successful attempt yet, and I can only hope that this year, I’ll be able to do so much more with this experience. As the last few days of October come to a close, I start to collect ideas, potential character names, and a variety of usable settings. I take the time to do separate free writing: small, simple projects that have nothing to do with my potential NaNo idea just to make sure I am in the right mindset to give it my all when November 1st rolls around.
I crack open my writing journal to set aside a section specifically for this project, much like I do any project I tackle. Allowing myself to take a break from the screen once in a while, really gets my train of thought working overtime. For now, I am going to try to have as many successful writing sessions as possible, play with ideas, really test the waters of my creativity so that I feel limitless when NaNoWriMo begins.
Time Yourself: Write Something
Set a timer, give yourself the thirty minutes to an hour that you’d use to catch up on your favourite show, laze around, and or check your socials to write something. Open up a blank document, turn to a fresh page, and stop thinking so hard. Let it flow, it it remind you how much you truly love this process. Forget about it making sense, forget about your perfect vocabulary and flowery language. Allow for the raw plot to surface and for it to manifest into something you may have never imagined.
Don’t think about the word count, don’t think about the page numbers. Just take a moment to create the world you want to explore, and take your time with your characters. They’re yours, and you hold their fate in your hands. Sometimes we forget that we have as many options as we do with our writing when we fall into a routine, or a certain way in which our stories are told. Change things up, let it be written naturally. You might just surprise yourself. It also doesn’t hurt to read something inspiring to kickstart the process. Something that makes you say, “I want to write something that makes me feel this good.”