Nanowrimo 2019! Tag, Prep, and Survival Kit!

Hiiii Nanowrimo starts in two days and I’m not ready! So instead of prepping like I should be, I’m gonna do this post. This will contain the Nanowrimo Tag, my prep final update, and my survival kit!

The Nanowrimo Tag!

  • How many times have you participated in Nanowrimo?

This’ll be my 11th year. At this point I feel like I just can’t break the streak, man.

  • Are you a pantser or a planner?

Typically a pantser, but last year I did a bit of planning and it ended up going really well. So, this year I’m attempting a bit of planning again.

  • What are the titles of the projects that you have attempted/completed for past Nanos?
    • 2008-2010, I don’t remember, because hey, the website didn’t record it.
    • 2011: Terminus
    • 2012: Basil
    • 2013: Animal Research
    • 2014: Gambit
    • 2015: Untitled
    • 2016: Basil (version 2)
    • 2017: Vial of Earth (which… is basically Basil version 3)
    • 2018 Basil (version 3) (…version 4)
    • 2019: Lackluster
  • What are you working on for this year?

A brand new project!!! I’ve written and rewritten Basil so many damn times and last year I finally was able to make something I liked. That means I can do something new this year and I’m so excited!

  • What is one tip you’d give to someone else participating in Nano?

Same thing I said last year: a good temperature. If you’re in a cold room, put on a blanket. Or if you’re in a hot room, run around in your skivvies. Be comfortable before you try to concentrate.

  • What was the inspiration for this novel? Do you remember when inspiration hit?

Honestly I don’t remember. It was a random conversation with coworkers and I thought to myself ‘what if…’ about what we were talking about. And voila.

  • Read us the first sentence from your Nano novel last year?

“When the juggler dropped the planet, everyone felt it. ”

  • What do you plan to do with your manuscript after Nano?

Assuming it does crash and burn, edit it. But I said that last year too and it’s still in draft 1, sooo.

  • Are you prepared for Nano? Are you nervous?

Not nervous. Also probably not as prepared as I should be, but I kinda like it that way to be honest.



  • Complete an outline
    • Deciding on act structure – Done
    • Fleshing out major plot points – In progress
    • Deciding ending ahead of time – Not done
  • Develop characters
    • Main characters – Done
    • Side characters – Not done
  • Do some world building
    • Develop magic system – In progress
    • Country history – Done
    • Culture – In progress
  • Do some planning every day, even if it’s just a sentence or a bullet point – In progress
  • Read some comedy fantasy to get an idea of how different authors incorporate comedy into their fiction
    • Kings of the Wyld – Done
    • Color of Magic – Not done
  • Do biweekly (at least!) planning sessions with buddy(ies) who are also doing nanowrimo this year – Done

The above… is basically what it’s going to be going into November 1st, and I’m ok with that. I’ve prepped enough that I can definitely pound out several thousand words, and hopefully doing that will inspire the rest of my plot.

Survival Kit

My current set up:


Note: All my Christmas lights have burnt out, so… this, but less glowy.

Other things in the kit:

  • Caramel pecan candle

I used this last year and I bought two more for this year. I only burn it while I write, so the scent gets me into the zone big time.

  • NanoWordSprints twitter account

I found this last year as well! Man, this twitter account helped me win nano for sure. It’s so motivating, and I highly recommend checking it out. It hosts word sprints (duh) basically 24/7 for the whole month and it’s fantastic.

  • Goldfish and pretzels

The little cheddar goldfish/pretzels combo bag. It’s perfecto.

  • Coffee/tea/beer/hot chocolate


  • Fluffy blankets and socks

I mentioned finding the right temperature above. Well, my ideal is a cold room and then warm stuff on me. So blankets and socks are essential.

  • Epic instrumental playlist

This is the playlist! It’s perfect for writing. It melds basically with whatever you’re on, particularly if it’s fantasy. It’s just so great. And it’s huge, so it can play for hours.

  • Story binder

This is where I store all my research and character stuff and world building. And by binder I mean.. part of it is in an actual binder, part of it is in Google Docs and just hasn’t all been printed out yet, because I have no printer (pbtbt). Either way, this is basically all my prep work.

And that’s it! Today is today, tomorrow is Halloween, and then the next day, it begins.



Preparing for Nanowrimo

NaNoWriMo 2018 Facebook Cover

Hello! Today I wanna blabber about all the things I’m doing to hopefully prevent my Nanowrimo novel from being a dumpster fire (but let’s be honest, that’s a long shot).

  • Outlining

I’m actually attempting an outline this year. Usually I’m a pantser, and I’ve won three times using that method. Unfortunately, each time, I was rewriting a novel that didn’t turn out the way I wanted it to the year before. And guess what, it still didn’t turn out. So this year I’m rewriting it again but hopefully I’ll like.. y’know.. having an ending.

  • Making a story binder

This kinda goes along with outlining – I’ve decided to keep a physical contraption full of all the stuff I’m doing. It’ll hold my outline, any research stuff I’ve grabbed, character sheets, sticky tabs, yada yada. I actually went out and got a new binder specifically for the occasion, almost like a christening. I’m hoping it’ll have some substance in it by the time Nano begins, and I hope it’ll be nice and chubby by the time Nano is over.

  • Making a survival kit and writing nest

This is a one new for me, and I didn’t realize it was a thing until I starting seeing it floating around on the internet. Basically whatever hovel you set up to write in, you fill with things to basically help you, well, survive. Snacks, socks, blankets, candles, what have you. Anything that’ll make you comfy and help you maintain focus. As of writing this post, my nest is my chair, blanket and side table, and my survival kit snacks haven’t been purchased yet. I have the candle though – pecan something or other.

  • Making a playlist

For scenes I already have in my head, I tend to associate them to songs. So, those songs are going on there. Otherwise, I’ll be adding instrumental music that I feel overall conveys the tones of arcs, chapters, the whole thing, etc. I’ll be listening to almost solely it, at least while writing, in November. At the time of writing this, this is what’s on my current playlist.

And that’s it! Are you doing anything different or in addition to this list? Gimme ideas, peeps.