Last month, my NaNoWriMo group decided to try something new. We called it PlOctoWriMo. As in Plotting in October Writing Month. We used the article from The Write Life, by Janice Hardy on a 4 week success plan for NaNoWriMo. Read the article here.
We took her ideas and broke them down into different days. Some weeks, we had three different assignments, and some weeks, we only had two. It was so fun to have a mapped out plan on how to plan our novel. Over the years, while doing NaNoWriMo, I’ve found that the more I plan, and the more intricate my writing bible is, the better I write. Not only do I write faster, I’m also able to write more at a time, and I wanted to share that success with our region.
We had two different planning sessions through the month, added to our kickoff, and we had an awesome turnout. We also had a lot more activity online, with many of our participants asking for brainstorming help, and we always were able to help them through their roadblock. Which means they’ve already planned for it before they even got to it.
I know there are pantsers out there, but when it comes to writing a novel in 30 days, I feel like planning is the best way to do it. During our Writers Conference, I actually sat down with J Scott Savage and asked him how long it takes him to write a novel. He said that he takes about 6 weeks to write his first draft. When I told him that last year, I wrote two books in my series during November, he already knew that I was a planner. He didn’t even have to ask.
How about the rest of you? Planners out there? Pantsers?