Posted in Creative WRiting, nano prep, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, pinterest, Writing Advice, writing prep, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

NaNo Prep Countdown – 4 Days… Pinteresting…

So, this particular Countdown Tip is something that I have recently decided to try out myself. Much like saving pictures to your desktop for inspiration, the website Pinterest allows you to do just that. Now, I’m not saying that you should spend your entire NaNo time glued to your phone or web browser by any means… but especially in these few days that we have left until NaNo begins, it’s a great way to get yourself hyped and get some visual ideas in your head.


Above is a picture of My Pinterest, which I just started today ^_^

If you don’t like Pinterest, there are other options. Some people like to create a Tumblr specific to their novel to reblog photos, quotes, etc. Some people go the old fashioned route and actually make a pin board in their room. The point isn’t necessarily how you do it, but the fact that you’re doing it. When you find yourself stuck at 1,000 words, looking at your inspiration board (through whatever venue you chose) could give you that extra push that you need to keep on going.

How I do this is a little funny. I mostly pin faces. I pick what my main characters are going to look like, and then I search the internet far and wide for people with those appearances. I like to have expressions for sad, angry, elated, miserable… because I can look at that and get a bit of an actual feel for how my character is feeling in a particular scene if I’m having trouble. Of course, doing fantasy novels, I also love to pin pictures of potential locations, magical-awesomeness, etc. But that little burst of inspiration does help!

So, I know that Pinterest isn’t for everyone, but think about having some kind of inspiration section for your novel, so when you’re having tough times in that third week of NaNo, you have something to help push you along! NaNo Prep is there to get you through the tough times!

That’s all I have for now. I’ll be doing little posts like this until NaNo begins. I can’t wait. Only 4 more days! Are you ready?

Until next time, keep reading and writing,

Author Amanda McCormick
Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page

Posted in nano prep, NaNoWriMo, natioanl novel writing month, writing prep, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

NaNo Tip #12 – Sometimes You Disconnect


So, this blog comes from a very true place. I have had internet access for a day and some change. It’s probably going to happen to you that you find yourself in a situation at some point or another during November that you aren’t going to have your internet. Whether you’re stuck doing family things, your provider goes down, or you have a long trip… it’s probably going to happen.

So, what do you do about it? I can tell you what you don’t do… you don’t give up and choose to not write. You don’t lose potentially thousands of words because you ‘can’t write.’ Here’s a little tough love, guys… that’s bullshit. You can ALWAYS write. How? How, when you don’t have your internet to post, to check forums, etc? How when you’re on a road trip? How if (god forbid) you can’t get to your computer for a day? It’s okay, let me tell you.

  • Do it the old fashioned way and write it out. You might not be able to get your full amount of words, but take notes, write ideas, just keep writing so that when you get back to your computer, you can get your writing out extra fast.
  • If you don’t have internet access for a blog… write offline. I know, that’s weird, but you can do it. Prepare your posts for when you can post! This is for those of you who blog during NaNoWriMo.
  • Get applications on your phone to help! Come on now, we all have smart phones now a days. Do you know what program is a life saver for me? Evernote. (I will blog about Evernote tomorrow). Seriously. You can sync it everywhere, and when you’re out on that super long car trip, you can put your texting skills to the test. It may not be the prettiest 1,667 words you’ve ever written, but they’ll still be there.
  • Alternatively, use a tablet if you have one. They have writing programs. It might not be the fastest you’ve ever done, but you can do it!

I know, it’s a little weird to think of writing without your computer. I hate it. I hated trying to get my blogs ready without internet access, but I did it! On the trip to No Internet Land, I wrote on my phone. When there, I wrote offline, and I worked on my NaNoWriMo plot in a notebook. The point is, we don’t have to be hooked in. There are always options!

Until next time, guys! Keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda McCormick

Posted in nano prep, nano tips, NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, writing prep, Writing Tips

NaNo Tip #8 – Don’t Put It Off


This is probably something that you’ve heard a million times before. I’m sure you’ll hear it a million times again… but I’m going to tell you now, and speak from the heart. Sometimes we think that we have a lot of time to do things… so we put it off for a year, for another year… for another year. We do that thinking that we will always have time to finish our goals.

How would you feel if you woke up tomorrow knowing that you only had a few weeks left to finish everything that you had on your ‘to-do’ list? I’ve recently had some events taking place in my life (nothing to do with me being ill, so no worries) that has put into perspective the fact that there isn’t always time to wait. Sometimes the ‘eventually’ should be today. Sometimes the things that we need to put off should be done in the moment. Sometimes that moment is all that we have.

So, before you decide to tell yourself that you can always do NaNo next year, think for a moment about the reasons that you should do it this year. What if someone that you care about isn’t around this time next year to read what you produce? Do you want that regret in your life? Of course you don’t. I promise you don’t. So, please, listen to me when I’m telling you this… don’t wait to do tomorrow what you might only have today to truly appreciate.

This is a short little tip, but one that I felt the need to share. You’re all amazing, and signing on here every day to see my views and comments really helps to cheer me up with the upset that I’m feeling right now. You’re all amazing.

Until next time, keep reading and writing.

Author Amanda McCormick

Twitter | Patreon | NaNo Page

Posted in NaNoWriMo, nanowrimo prep, National Novel Writing Month, patreon, writing prep, writing prompts, Writing Space, Writing Tips, Writing Tricks

Prepping for NaNo (NaNo Tip #3… I think.)


So, I’ve been posting a bunch of writing prompts to prep for National Novel Writing Month, but just doing prompts isn’t the only prep that you need. Some of my tips have mentioned a few other things, but I wanted to really think about it and make a list for how I prep for NaNo. This post came about because I asked in my earlier post how you guys plan for NaNoWriMo. I’d still love to hear that, but for now… here is how an Amanda Do.

  • First and foremost, I do prompts. I know, you already know this… but it’s one of the more important things for me. If I haven’t been writing every day, it gets me into a habit. It’s a very important habit!
  • Secondly, I make sure my Scrivener is ready for me. I plot out my novel. I’m not a huuuugeee planner. What I tend to do is use the notecard feature on Scrivener. I will write something like: Chapter One – Introduce main character. Chatper Two – Introduce so and so conflict. Basically 1-2 lines about what I want to see happen during the novel. I don’t even do it for a guideline so much as just to see that I have enough content to get through the novel.
  • Third, I like to make sure that my NaNo room is all amped up. I start talking to people, trying to get the hype going. I have a few steady writer friends who I talk to all year long, but getting fresh excitement in the room is important to me.
  • Fourth, though I won’t do this until closer to the end of the month… I make sure that my writing area is completely clean and organized. I have a writing area all sectioned off… and it’s where I do a lot of my NaNo work. I can’t do that if it’s a mess… oh, I can’t do that at all. Along with this, I fix my calendar, write my word count goals, etc. I like to be able to mark off the days that I finish, how ahead/behind I am, etc.
  • Fifth, I make sure that I’m stocked up on coffee, energy drinks, and discounted Halloween candy. I think that one explains itself >_>
  • Sixth and finally for the moment, I get myself as hyped as possible. I look at my story, I plan out more details for it, I watch NaNoWriMo videos from people like Katytastic. I do everything that I can to get myself going so that I can do what I love to do on that first day…

And what is that, you might ask? First day, as soon a November 1st hits… I like to write. I write all day. I write as hard as I can. I word war, I word crawl, I participate in sprints. I do 1st day 10k. Yeah, that’s right. If I can, I like to get 10k in the first day. It gets you so ahead, and it’s a great goal to go for, even if you only get 5k. Getting ahead is so important!

Anyway, this post is getting a little lengthy, so I’ll end it for now. I’d love to hear how you guys prep! Let me know!

Until next time, keep reading and writing!

Author Amanda Mccormick

Patreon | Twitter