Hello, my name is Andrea, but my friends mostly call me Kanna. This is my 4th year participating in Nano. I first found out about it while at an anime convention. There was a panel on writing fanfiction early on Sunday and I thought it would be fun. I was not disappointed. The panelist also told all of us about a yearly writing event called Nanowrimo, so when November rolled around I looked it up and said ‘why not’.
You can do it!
I’ve always found that positive encouragement can help when you’re stuck or just in a bit of a slump. So we will start this out with that.
Moving on to more practical advice, over my years of writing I have found that the best way to meet a word goal is to not worry about how many words you may have written. Instead, focus on what point in your story you want to get to each day. This can be as simple as having a scene in mind that you want to get out of your mind before it flies the coupe or a plot goal, such as making sure those two characters meet today! By not focusing so much on the number of words written and instead on the content you want to get down on the page that day it can be easier to focus on just writing, whether you are a total pantser or a planner with detailed outlines.
My next bit of advice is to find your characters’ voices. I usually do this by listening to a variety of music and imagining which songs best fit my characters, but other’s may find them by looking up or drawing pictures of their characters. Whatever best helps you to separate each character and allows them to develop as individuals, unique to themselves and not just cookie cutter characters of the same person. Letting your characters find their voices makes it easier to get through those moments where you aren’t sure what a character should do, because you can basically ask them what they would do. This can be hard though since I have had entire plot points derailed by characters not doing the thing I want them to because it is not in them to behave a certain way. This will lead me down entirely new storylines and plots, it can make the story more organic but it can also make it feel more genuine.
I hope my favorite tips and tricks will help you all out this month. Good luck and happy writing!