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NaNoOutMo: The October NaNoWriMo Pre-show

As we get closer and closer to November the thought on many writers minds is: “Do I participate in NaNoWriMo?” The idea of finishing a 50,000 word draft in a month is very tempting, I’ll admit.

The traditional NaNoWriMo challenge is to write 50,000 words of a new project in a month, but the challenge has broadened over the years for people who want to participate, but can’t work with the same goals. Back when I first started NaNoWriMo there was Camp in April and July that had you set your own goal, but that’s now available as an option for the November challenge as well. There are also editing, poetry, and short story challenges that people have devised for writers working in different forms or on other projects. For me, I always take November to try and reestablish the writing routine I lost over the summer, so personal challenge is just to write at least 200 words everyday throughout November.

Whether you’re doing the official challenge or not, you’ll want to get some prep work done before you begin to keep you moving forward. That’s where Preptober, or as I like to call it NaNoOutMo (National Novel Outlining Month) comes in. The month before NaNoWriMo where we hurriedly get our thoughts in order.

As some of you may know, I’m a pantser, which means I don’t work well with a strict outline and prefer to jump in and ride by the seat of my pants. So I won’t be making a strict outline this month, but I am going to take the chance to put down some of my scene ideas and decide which of my projects to commit to. I’ll get into more detail about what I’m doing in later blogs, but for now I’m mostly just deciding how big of a goal I want to set.

If you’re looking for some structure in the coming month, check out this post by a young adult writer who put together a Preptober challenge or search up Preptober to get some ideas there are tons. I’ll be posting a little more regularly (when I can) for the next two months about my process and how my writing is going, so look forward to that.


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