Author Prepares for Nanowrimo!

In November I will commit novel.

Nanowrimo is a crazy idea that really works, at least for some…83,000 people who participated in 2014. It’s a month long, internationally used site that encourages people to try writing a novel in a month. Okay, only 50,000 words, which is a fairly short novel, especially if you write fantasy, as I do, but it’s a pretty good start.

I’ve done this successfully twice, and have two novels to show for it. Of course after the month is over, the novel is far from complete, but a first draft is a big deal, and then you have something to work with and the long task of editing begins.

Outlining is not considered absolutely necessary for Nanowrimo members, but I find it much easier to head out with at least a sketch of what I’m going to write. I hate staring at the blank screen wondering what happens next in the story. I’d much prefer to have some ideas to get me through.

This year I’ve decided to go one step further and take the time to do a very detailed outline. I’ve decided to apply a method to do this. I’m going with Shawn Coyne’s Story Grid method. He’s an editor who’s come up with this method to help authors find their issues with their own works when self editing, but I’ve decided if it’s good for that, it would be even better to start out with a grid and (hopefully) avoid some of those pitfalls in the first place. Will it work? I’ll let you know in a couple of months!

Update: I just find my way to this post from Chuck Wendig about outlining. Beware the salty language if that sort of thing bothers you, but he lists the many different outlining and the pros and cons of each of them in a  very long post. Very instructive.

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