Preptober: Ready Your Toolbox and Workshop
Guys. NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow. We’ve been planning for this all year. (Like seriously, I have been purposely not allowing myself to indulge too many of my idea fantasies until November 1st.) Our novels are mostly ready to be written, our brains are pretty much prepared and it’s almost go time.
The last thing we want to check off the list before the madness begins is our writing tools and our sacred writing space. Let’s dive in, shall we?
Make a list
Now is the time to ask yourself one very important question (and then a few subsequent ones): How are we doing this?
What do you need to write? Are you using pen and paper? A laptop? What program are you using? How are you going to back up your work?
Answer these questions for yourself and make a list of materials you need–including some extra fun ones just in case. Gather your materials in a specific location so you’re always ready to go. Do test runs of your programs to make sure you have the latest updates and that everything is running smoothly.
Fun fact: if you’re using Scrivener, they came out with an update not too long ago, plus a new NaNoWriMo template! This template looks just like any other novel template, but it has preset goals. Check it out here.
Location, location, location
Another important question: Where are we doing this? Whether you plan to spend the whole month at home or want to bounce around to different places, it’s always good to make a plan in advance.
Where in your home is your dedicated writing space? Do you have one set up already? Make sure your desk is tidy ahead of time, so you don’t get bogged down by clutter. And if you don’t have an office at home, that’s okay! Even if you’re writing at your kitchen table, you want to make sure you separate your writing life from your dinner time by clearing your space and adding details that really make it yours.
If you’re writing somewhere else like a coffee shop or library, you’ll want to make sure to add everything you need to bring with you to your list of materials. Laptop, charger, phone charges, snacks and hydration, notes, etc. Make a plan ahead of time for how long you want to spend in one place and factor in breaks and meals.
Get cozy and set the mood
No matter where you are, at home or otherwise, you can find ways to settle in and set the mood for your writing session. At home, you can gather up a blanket, candles, and your fuzziest PJs, and even when you go out you can make sure to dress comfy and bring headphones to play your favorite writing music.
Try not to spend so much time worrying about how you’re writing that you’re not actually writing. But if you put a little forethought into it, you’d be surprised how much you can get done when you’re in the right frame of mind.
Want to join the fun?
We hope you are ready to tackle Preptober and your next novel! But that’s not the only reason we’re here.
Community is one thing that drives us forward every day in the writing world. Sure, we want to write books and get them published, but we will never be able to accomplish that without a few people keeping us sane. The Mighty Pens is a fantastic place to meet new writing friends, tackle NaNoWriMo, and support a good cause along the way. Join in on the fun here!
Come visit us on social media, too! We’ll be talking about some great things over the coming weeks on Twitter and Instagram. And if you’re interested in connecting with more people during Preptober check out hashtags like #preptober and #preptober2020 to see what other writers just like you are up to.