Who’s ready for NaNoWriMo 2014? (Tips included)


National Novel Writing Month strikes yet again this year. Will you do it? Are you up to the challenge? Can you write a novel in a month?

I for one think I am not ready. I’ve been planning my November since October, before I even selected my Halloween costume. What? Yes, I am that excited for it. But my ideas are blank. Are yours?

Last year, I wrote a post on how to finish NaNoWriMo. It actually helps. You can find it here.

This year, I’m back with a few more tips on NaNoWriMo. Except this year, I have tips on how to develop your idea, or create one if you don’t have it. (Like me.)

1. Create your characters. Some people might argue with making your characters before fleshing out an idea, but in my opinion and trial, it is easier to have an understanding of your characters first. I’d just draft a quick character-sketch of my main characters.

2. Free-write with your characters. Now, once you have a group of your little marionettes, try to engage them in a conversation. The talk can be about anything—cars, music, celebrities, etc. Sculpt this conversation into a scene— for example, if Joe and Jane were conversing about pop music, plant them in a radio station and continue from there. This exercise helps  to get to know your characters better. Maybe the scene will end up in your novel.

3. Write and repeat. Keep writing. Just write whatever comes to your mind, even if at the time it sounds ridiculous, you can use that scene later and make it better by editing it. But for now, just write. If you’re out of ideas in the middle of the novel, do Step 2 again. Or, better yet, leave your novel and go read a book. Or do something else entirely, like working out or hitting the mall. This will refresh your mind and make you more motivated to continue.

And last of all, Happy Halloween! I’m not going to say “Don’t take candy from strangers” because when I go trick-or-treating tonight, I will be doing just that. So, just have fun but be careful of the sugar high!

Comment below! What are you dressing up as?




My Dangerously Bad Reading Habits

I have mentioned before some of my bad habits as a reader. I realize now that I have many more of these. Do you have these habits too? We’ll see.

1. Judging a book by its cover. Very, very common reading mistake. I know in my heart that a book with a boring cover could be just as fun as a book with a pretty cover, but my brain thinks otherwise. It’s hard to defy your brain, you know.

2. Reading too many books at the same time. This is dangerous. As a result of this habit, Rebel by Amy Tintera and Matched by Ally Condie are on hold right now. I am in the middle of them both but can’t continue because I keep finding more books to read and start them as soon as I can get my hands on them. Which, if I try, is pretty fast.

3. Skimming over some sentences that I don’t understand. I tend to do this sometimes when I try a new author, which I do a lot. All authors have a different way of writing and it’s confusing when you can’t understand what they mean. I also tend to skim over parts that I don’t have interest in- politics, boring character talking, etc. I try not to, but it’s a habit.

4. Trying books in only tested-and-tried genres. I know, I know. I should go out and try it. But that’s the problem. I can’t get myself to pick up a book that is not contemporary, young adult or horror. And it took time for me to accept the horror books. I always like the visuals better.

5. Speaking in the voice of the character, to get a better understanding. Now, this isn’t really a bad habit but it’s one I’ve been trying to break. I feel that I can understand a character’s voice and way of speaking better if I try it out.

6. Skipping to the end of the book and/or chapter. Oh, this is a VERY bad one. I have spoiled so many books for myself this way. So many plot twists and sudden appearances have become useless.

If you read the title properly, you’re probably wondering how any of this is dangerous’. It is. All of these habits make me prone to insta-death. Yes, I die when I make stupid mistakes like turning the page and getting to know that William Herondale has a ***SPOILER***very nice heart. ***SPOILER*** It hurts to know that you missed it coming in the first place, and also destroyed the suspense. There are similar reasons for all them, but if I started discussing those too, we’d be here for a long time.

What are YOUR bad reading habits? Are they worse than mine? Tell me in the comments below.

– The Enchanted Book