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Dark Boys

E-Mail from the Manitoba NaNoWriMo liaisons.

Posted by nitemaresketch on 2006.10.30 at 18:54
Batten down the hatches!

As we are now only two days away from novel fever, many of us are
starting to experience panic, denial, or a creative overflow that just can’t
wait until the 1st. As this whirlwind of emotion begins to settle into
(gulp!) fear, there is one thing you should keep in mind as that
deadline looms ever closer on the horizon. As was written by a mind greater
mind than mine; Don’t Panic! There are some things you can do before
NaNo begins to get your calendar cleared and your coffee pot humming.

Do the laundry.
This may seem silly but, when the 10th rolls around and your torn
between washing you undies and whipping out another 1000 words well, the
people that live with you just might start complaining.

Warn your friends/family.
When your significant other calls and wants to do lunch, your best
buddy just has to see the new scary flick with you or, little Suzy needs
her shoes tied they need to understand that you’re not just shucking them
off. It’s because Franklin just went into the mines with Kristen and,
wait… Was that an ancient ninja order that just followed them in!?

Create a writing space in your home.
Many of us may already have one but, it becomes extra important in
November. Even if you just love this perfect little table in the
independent coffee house down the street with lace curtains in the window,
chances are they won’t appreciate you breaking in at 2am because the muse has
made her illusive appearance. I suggest a nice, quiet place with plenty
of light, back support and no internet access. Instant messengers are
not conducive to prolific writing! Be sure the people you live with know
not to bother you with petty things like, oh... the house is on fire,
when you’re in this space.

Take care of yourself.
If you have any sort of repetitive stress disorder, November can become
very daunting. I suggest getting a wrist support, comfy chair and lots
of vitamin B12 to make sure you’re ready to bat those pinky fingers
into submission when they start twitching. Give yourself a little extra
time to write and be sure to take plenty of breaks. If soreness occurs,
walk away for a few hours and/or consider investing in one of those
verbal translators.

Stock up on goodies.
Caffeine is the nectar of life but, can only sustain a person for so
long. Make sure the pantry is full and, if you’ve a family to feed you
have all your recipes prepared for the week so that other people in the
house can whip them up with minimal questions. If candy keeps you
motivated (If I write 3000 words today, I’ll reward myself with a Milky bar!)
check out cybele’s candy blog for reviews on the good stuff.

Do you have a plot?
This is not a necessity but, even if it’s a one-sentence sketch it’s
better than nothing. Having a plot gives you a place to reach to when
you’re halfway through November and have used up all your dares. If having
a plot isn’t your thing, it might be beneficial to at least have brief
biographies of your main characters, it’s good to know who you’ll be
working with for the next month.

Pace yourself.
Take a long, critical look at your calendar in November. Do you have
one day that’s 12 hours of meetings, a week of solid mid-terms, or do you
just know that Thanksgiving is going to be a non-productive nightmare?
Prepare yourself for the hard days by hammering out as much as possible
on the first day and, any other day when you’ve ample time.

Now take a breath, step back and give yourself a huge smile. Why?
Because even if you’ve done absolutely nothing and, plan on doing nothing
until midnight November 1st, you’re still prepared for NaNo! This is a
difficult, manic, fun challenge— stressing the “fun” side of things.

Remember, by the time December rears its head, you’re going to be a
novelist.

-Betty and Heather-
Manitoba Co-MLs
(Insert Blindmail Message Here)

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