Inktober & NaNoWriMo Prep

Hello beautiful people! So it’s the first day of Halloween October and there are two major events going on that I’m going to be participating in, and they are:

Inktober and NaNoWriMo Prep.

In case you don’t know what either of these things are, here’s a little info about them & what I plan on doing:

Inktober

Inktober is a drawing challenge that has four rules:

  1. Make a drawing in ink.
  2. Post it online.
  3. Hashtag it with #inktober and #inktober2017.
  4. Repeat every day of October.

That’s it! I first saw the challenge last year around the time I started my art Instagram and I wanted to participate this year. There’s an official list of prompts for the 31 days, and I’m going to be using that list to draw every day in October and – hopefully – improve my skills more.

inktober2017

I’ll be using Micron Fine Liner pens for the majority of my work, but I may do some in color? I’m not sure as I’ve always loved drawing in black and white, but we’ll see how I’m feeling for that prompt that day. So if you want to see how the challenge is coming along then please check out my art Instagram linked above!

NaNoWriMo

NaNo-2017-Participant-Badge

National Novel Writing Month is coming up NEXT MONTH (ugh, it hurts to say that) and OMG I NEED TO PREP SO BAD. Like. I’ve never really prepped for this before? I kind of did last year where I had an outline and things were going pretty good UNTIL THEY WEREN’T. URGH. But it’s fine. Everything’s fine.

So what’s NaNoWriMo you ask? It’s a 30 days writing challenge that takes place from November 1-30 where you are challenging yourself to write 50,000 words in 30 days. It’s a super fun (and kind of exhausting) challenge, and if you love to write or you have a story idea that you’ve been dying to tell, then this is probably the challenge for you!

Of course you don’t have to write 50,000 words if you’re unable to or if your story doesn’t need to be that long, but the goal is to reach that word count if you can in 30 days.

I don’t have a synopsis ready yet as I’m still working out some kinks in the story I want to write this year, but here are three keywords that my story revolves around: fantasy, depression, love.

This is a story that I NEED to tell. It’s a subject matter that’s close to my heart and it’s one in which I feel will not only be challenging for me to write, but also beneficial. I hope that during the month of October I will be able to successfully prep myself by doing the following things:

  • Write an outline of the whole story. I found that I actually like outlining as I’m able to use it as a guideline for my writing so that I don’t stray too far from where I had imagined the story going.
  • Come up with a synopsis. Honestly, this should be the first thing I do because even though I have a concept of the character and the power she’ll have (I was also going to originally make her a male, but I think I’m going to write her as a female… we’ll see), I don’t exactly have a plot figured out. Like, I know the general message I want to get across in the story, but I don’t have a way to get there. I sort of do but I don’t? It’s very hard to explain.
  • Work on small writing prompts to get to know my characters, the world, and what they have to deal with. This is a new thing I’m going to try this year. I usually already know my character as I have a file in my head of who they are in everything (imagine Bruce Almighty when he’s in that building meeting God for the first time and opens the file cabinet), but I think that this will also be very beneficial as I can write back story, side story, develop the world, figure out weapons systems and powers and stuff like that. I have vague concepts but not enough for me to really go on.
  • Participate in little NaNo Prep challenges here and there. I think it’ll be fun to join in with other writers and brainstorm and chat about our novels. Plus it’s a little encouraging to know that others will be doing similar things as I am.

Alright, so there you have it! These are the two challenges that I’ll be facing in October. I’ll try to do weekly wrap ups of Inktober to show the art I created for that week, as well as discuss what I’ve been doing for NaNoWriMo as well.

Let’s Chat! ^w^

If you’re participating in either of these challenges please let me know! I’d love to be able to go on this journey with you and see just what October has in store for us. Are you interested in either of the challenges? Let me know how you’re prepping for NaNo.

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Preparing for NaNoWriMo

Hey peeps. So I decided I’m going to participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) this year, and so I wanted to share some of my thoughts on preparing for the month long of writing to come.

I just want to state now that I am by no means an expert at NaNo as this is my second year being a part of it, but it’ll be my third NaNo experience.

For those that don’t know what NaNoWriMo is it’s a non-profit organization that raises money to have creative writing in classrooms, while also being sort of like a competition to see if you are able to reach 50,000 words in one month. How much is 50k words? It’s essentially 200-230 pages of a novel, so think some YA contemporaries. It’s pretty much a short novel, but it’s still a novel! Cool, right?

So not only is NaNoWriMo a fun, engaging, and often exhausting event, but it’s also just a time to really see what kind of story you’re going to create. But that also doesn’t mean that you don’t need to prepare beforehand.

Here’s a few of the things that you should have before starting NaNoWriMo:

  • An idea: Okay, there are two types of people: pantsers and planners. Pantsers like to go by the seat of their pants and just write whatever comes to them, while planners like to, well, plan. But I think that, even if you’re a pantser, you should at least have some sort of idea as to what you want to write: do you like fantasy? What about a person of color? Do you want them to be old, young, both? Do you want to time travel? Do you want to write an epoch or a really, really long poem? Really, there’s a lot to think of here, so try to at least have some idea as to what you want to accomplish during NaNo.
  • A USB drive: Why should you have one of these? Well, not only do the people of NaNo say time and time again to SAVE YOUR WORK ON MULTIPLE DEVICES, but it’s also a good idea that if you’re traveling and you want to work on your novel while you’re away from your home computer, you’ll be able to by having a USB with you. They’re pretty cheap and you really only need a small sized one. Mine can hold up to 2GB. I also attached a string to mine so I can wear it around my neck if need be.
  • A notebook: This one is more optional, but if you’re like me and you need to write at least some things out long hand, then having a notebook handy is really helpful. You can jot down ideas real quick, or you can draw your own rough sketch of a map or characters. It’s really a creative tool to help you visualize your story more.
  • Food/snacks/water: Keep yourself fed! You’re going to be writing a crap ton of words in 30 days, so you really need to keep hydrated and fed. Sugar can be good to help in those times when you’re really tired, but beware of sugar crashes! Don’t be afraid to take ten minute breaks to stretch your legs, grab a bowl of fruit, some water or milk, and just relax for a few minutes. You might even think of a scene or two for your story!
  • A laptop/computer: This is kind of an important one. You do have the option of writing long hand if you want, but that’s a lot of work for your hand, so I suggest finding some sort of computer device if you’re able. Because, you know, where else are you going to write your actual story?
  • A writing program: Whether you use MS Word, Pages, Google Drive, or some other writing platform, this is the quintessential item that you need because where else are you going to write it? Just be sure that when you come to a point that you think you should save: SAVE IT. SAVE YOUR WORK. Some of these programs save automatically over a time, but some don’t, so be sure to save your work! And you can play around with however you want it to look and stuff, so a writing program is key.

So there are some of the top things that I personally think you should have before you even begin writing. NaNo doesn’t start for another week and a half (depending on when you’re reading this) so try to get all of your thoughts and supplies together before it’s here!

Now, don’t stress out. November can be a stressful month as is with just the writing process, but if you prepare with supplies then that’ll take some of the pressure off.

Another way to prepare for NaNo: writing exercises! Writing exercises are a fun way to get your creative juices flowing and to be able to even work on some of your ideas. So whether you do sprints with other writers, or you find different writing exercises and prompts online, just be sure to have fun with it!

It’s a lot to think about and do, but I promise it’s worth it.

Are you going to be participating in NaNoWriMo? Do you have your supplies gathered for the month, or are you scrambling to get things ready? Let me know!