7 Days to 2012 NaNoWriMo – Outlining

I’ve been reading a lot of writing articles lately. There are so many out there that it’s very easy to get confused on what you should do and what you shouldn’t do as a writer. But what I’ve learned is that you truly have to find what works best for you.

I mostly read my articles from Writer’s Digest. There are tons and tons of articles on numerous topics – from ways to fuel your writing to finish your novel in 4 simple steps to your essential synopsis checklist.

The article I recently read, “How to Prepare for NaNoWriMo: To Outline or To Not Outline” was a perfect choice for Day 1 – 7 days to NaNoWriMo. I’ve always wondered if I should outline before starting a writing project. To me, it just seems that if I did, I wouldn’t have to worry so much about getting stuck or not knowing where my story would go next. But on the other hand, what if I don’t know where I want the story to go but instead I want my characters to dictate the direction of the story. How can you outline that?

When it really comes down to it for your NaNo story all you really need to know is:

  1. What’s your story going to be about?
  2. What does your character want?
  3. How will your character get what he/she wants?

Even if you only have a slight idea of these answers in your head (a mental outline), that’s good enough to get you started for NaNo. After all, it’s not about the quality of your novel that matters for NaNo, it’s the quantity. It’s getting to 50,000 words by 11:59pm on November 30.

So figure out what your story will be about. Know where it’s heading and I’ll see you at the finish line.



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