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Preparing for NaNoWriMo 2021 or Preptober

It's that time of year, again. The time writers dream about. Time to prepare for NaNoWriMo! This year I new tools to prepare. Some of you might not know this but, November is National Novel Writing Month. It is a time when people challenge themselves to write a novel, well around 50,000 words in a month.

There is a community hosted on There you will find resources, can sign up for groups located in your city, state or even groups based on genre. There are so many ways to participate in NaNoWriMo. It can be a great experience for many different people. As a woman of color I am also very happy that they have created space for various groups to interact regarding their experience as writers. I'm hoping you are seeing that there is something for everyone. Oh and there are sponsors that give deals and discounts for people who complete their novels.

As you can imagine, writing 50,000 words in one month is not easy. Overtime people began preparing for NaNoWriMo in October. Eventually, someone (I don't know who) decided to call October, Preptober. It is a time of preparation. It can be as general as making sure you announce your writing project on the NaNoWriMo website. Or as in-depth as freezing meals so you don't need to cook in November, writing an outline, setting up personal goal awards. You name it. There are a lot of resources to help you with Preptober. It comes up on the NaNoWriMo website, in a search on YouTube, Google, Instagram and any social media site.

For me, I've been doing/using the Preptober:

  • ProWritingAid Webinars - This month, I attended their Romance Writers' Week. It was a great opportunity to reaffirm some of my thoughts on writing. I also found new tools and methods. You can find the recording for Romance Writer's Week in their past webinar section.

  • Preptober Guide from Sarra Cannon - Sarra Cannon has two YouTube channels. I got this guide from her Heart Breathings channel which provides some great writing advice. I found her during one of my first tries at NaNoWriMo. I find her materials helpful and timely. Here is a hint, if you download her materials be sure to watch any video walkthroughs. The downloads are intuitive but when you watch her videos you get some great tips that take the material to the next level.

  • 'Blueprint for a Book' by Jennie Nash - This is a new book for me. I am using it for my NaNo project. So far, I find that it has helped ground me in my main characters. The motivations and the actions that occur due to their motives. I didn't provide a link as there are multiple ways of getting the book. This was one of the resources that I learned about during Romans Writers' Week.

  • 'Romancing the Beat' by Gwen Hayes - For me this is an oldie but goodie. I reacquainted myself with the book to provide added direction for this project. I like the book because of it's treatment for writing romance novels. I find that the structure provided does work well for writing romance. I can see how many of the books I enjoy have a similar structure.

I will be spending next month writing for NaNoWriMo but, hopefully I can hop back on here and give you an update on how the materials worked. For everyone participating in NaNoWriMo best of luck!

Everyone, thank you for joining me on my journey.

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