Woot! Super excited to take part in this year’s NaNoWriMo. For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, NaNoWriMo is an annual writing event hosted in November that encourages aspiring novelists and writers to write a novel in 30 days. I first heard about NaNoWriMo in December 2013. I was a month too late, but I liked the idea of completing a book and found their challenge to be doable.
Fast-forward to last year when I completed an entire 50,000+ word novel. You can read all about that here.
Today on Day 0, while everyone is out trick-or-treating or getting wasted in their best scary or sexy getups, I’m hammering away on my laptop putting the finishing touches on my outline. What’s the novel called you ask? Loyalty is Fiction. I started writing this story years ago but never finished. The title back then was She Said. I wrote up to 70 pages on a laptop I no longer have and the disk I saved it too has gone missing like bobby pins I once owned. Crushing right? Not really. I never had an outline for the story and wrote it off the top of my head. I never finished because I got stuck trying to figure out what should happen next. While that process may work for others, this sister needs an outline.
What is Loyalty is Fiction?
Here is the synopsis of Loyalty is Fiction straight from my MissWriteItAll page on the NaNoWriMo website:
Loyalty is Fiction is a story of three women who learn that happiness and loyalty while in love is what you make it and not what’s owed.
Meet Madison – a “happily” married woman who is expecting her first child, Courtney – a virgin engaged to her first love, and Laila – the very single friend in love with a married man. Their lives are different but they all have one thing in common and that’s trying to find out who they are independent of the men in their lives.
Madison is living the picture perfect life that everyone dotes on but she’ll discover that there’s no such thing as perfect. Courtney will learn that the man she loves and is about to marry isn’t who she thought he was. And Laila will discover that her married boyfriend isn’t as loyal to her as she’d like to think he is. They’ve all got pressures coming from all angles of their lives, influencing their decisions that will ultimately make them happy or hate themselves. They’ll soon learn that loyalty, in love, can be fiction.
The synopsis is a work in progress but I believe it’s a good start.
Although my last novel was a romance meets spirituality story, I’m going women’s fiction with this one. I want my characters to connect more with women since their situations are crazy but definitely not unique to them. And the scenarios presented here are so not romantic. But I assure you, it will be a good read!
What I’m doing to prepare
During last year’s NaNoWriMo, I used Scrivener and I’m using it again this year. It’s a writing software you download off their website and it’s AMAZING! I’m not affiliated with them but I just love how effective using it makes my writing and it helps to turn your dream of typing The End a reality. You can either choose to write under their blank project, or you can write under the novel project. I chose the latter since it gave me more options and it looks organized.
I started by creating character templates for my main characters and the characters they interact with the most. Their names, careers, personalities, what they look like, their internal and external conflicts, the works. I’ve also created setting templates to create a clearer picture of the locations they frequent throughout the story. This just helps prevent confusion and me writing “so and so” is arguing with her mother in chapter 15 but her mother died in chapter 3. This might work for a different type of novel though! I’ve also mapped out my scenes, what’s supposed to happen in each scene and in what chapters the scenes belong. I haven’t finished with this part yet but I’m hoping to complete it by tonight.
How I’m planning to get to 50,000 words
Consistency! With everything you want to achieve, consistency is key. I also plan to participate in their writer sprints that they have on Twitter and to use the Pomodoro method (writing for 25 minutes, taking 5 minute breaks, rinse and repeat until I get to my daily word count which is 1668 words), which is similar to their writer sprints. Eat right, dress warm, drink lots of water, and treat myself whenever I’ve written a certain amount. I will be popping champagne, god willing, and doing a Drake “Hotline Bling” dance when I get to the end.
My NaNoWriMo writing schedule
I’m a freelance writer in my “day job” and I’m a stay-at-home mother to a toddler who I’m also a teacher to, so as you can imagine time will be of the essence. I want, no I NEED, to write when I have little to no distractions so it must either be early in the morning before anyone wakes up or late at night when everyone is asleep. It might be in the morning, but I have to see how everything works with my workout schedule because this girl’s got to work on her fitness no matter what. You’ll be able to follow my journey to 50,000 words as I’ll be updating my blog 3 days a week (maybe even more than that) about my progress, woes, and possible emotional breakdowns during the challenge.
Oh! And if you want to download Scrivener and use it during NaNoWriMo, they are offering a special trial edition where you can download it for free and use it throughout the 30 days of the challenge *clapping emoji hands.* After the 30 days, you must buy it but if you win the challenge, they are one of the many sponsors. This means you’ll get the program at a 50% discount which amounts to about $20. And if you don’t win, you can still get a 20% discount. Aren’t you glad you read to the end? Lol. Here’s a link to download both the Mac or Windows versions.