21 days left until NaNoWriMo! For those of your who are planning to be Planners rather than Pantsers (here's an explanation of the NaNo Planner lifestyle and how it differs from the Pantser lifestyle, for the uninitiated), prep time is coming to a close. I am definitely starting to freak out a teensy bit. (Or… maybe more than a teensy bit.)
At this stage in the game, my number one recommendation is to get your synopsis on the NaNoWriMo site done this week. I did, and it forced me to ask some worldbuilding questions I wouldn’t have asked until I was actually writing otherwise. For the ten minutes it took me to write my synopsis, I was fully inside of my story, really thinking out the logic of every word I was putting down.
That kind of thinking—the kind where we really take the time to get inside of our stories—is one of the most important parts of the planning stages. For those of you who are Planners, your synopsis might be a great step towards a more detailed outline of your story, if you are the outlining type. Kate Weiland did a great write-up called “How to Outline for NaNoWriMo: Should You Outline Your Novel?” It’s a bit of a long read, but it discusses the planner vs. pantser debate and gives some great advice about the outlining process. Kate actually did a whole series of posts on outlining, and you can find the links to those at the bottom of that post.
For all you non-planners out there, this is still a good time to have thoughts about your novel percolating. This article discusses the dangers of planning (or over-planning) and champions the creativity that comes with just writing as you go. There's also some great advice in there about not overexplaining to your reader and letting your story speak for itself.
For those of you who are still on the fence about whether or not you even want to do NaNoWriMo, there's a ton of people writing about the various pros and cons of participating. I found this postmortem of NaNoWriMo 2016 to be really helpful.
If get your synopsis written before November comes, feel free to share it! I'm so excited to hear about what everyone is thinking about working on.
Also, we're planning on putting together a few online NaNo events for the Tapas community (as well as anyone else participating in NaNo that you'd like to invite). I'm planning on setting something up for midnight on October 31st/November 1st for sure, and then probably something on the 15th, and then a last-night-of-NaNo event on the 31st.
I wanted to ask you what form of communication you would prefer to use for events like that. I was thinking that Discord would be a great option, but I am open to other ideas. I also considered setting up a basic text-based chat, but I feel like that might be less interactive. If you have thoughts on this, please share! I want to make sure that these events are something that the community of writers we have here on Tapas will find useful and fun, and the easiest way to do that is to get feedback from you guys!