The NaNoWriMo Diaries – Week 1 – Outline



Whelp, I’m behind. Are you behind? ‘Cause I’m behind. The day that NaNo started I was getting a tattoo and that somehow ended up taking over my entire day, and on the second day, well, I forgot. So it is day 5 now as I am writing this, and I am at 4,292 words — I haven’t started writing today — and I should be at 6,668. I’m catching up, hopefully, and I’m feeling good about my progress so far. I started out with a pretty well flushed out outline, and I’m working off of that. My outlines are pretty rough, but this is how I have mine set up:

– Section of the book (I have mine broken up in to three sections)

– General smaller section

– Scene

I adopted this method when I started using Scrivener. I know some people have their scenes outlined as well, but I haven’t really done that for this project, though I use it when I’m working on my podcast scripts. To be honest, working on my novel Mark Of Life is the first time that I really sat down and made an outline and I’m so incredibly happy that I did. Its a fantastic way of organizing my thoughts and I’m using it on my other projects now. Scrivener is also helping me with that and that’s a new tool that I’m using as well.

I also find it interesting how my perception of how NaNoWriMo works is changing. For some reason I had this thought that you and to sit down and write beginning to end, and you couldn’t jump around or anything. I have a tendency when I’m writing to be working on a scene and get stuck. When this happens I’ll move to the scene immediately after and then go back to my first scene where I was having problems and figure out how to get from point A to point B. Knowing the situation that the characters have to end up in helps me figure out how they get there. Not only is that perception changing, I’m finding that NaNo is a fantastic exercise in using a daily writing schedule. My days start a little bit later so I’ve started getting up and writing before work and then keeping a notebook with me so that during any breaks I end up having I can sit down in a coffee shop and sketch out my ideas to type out later. Personally I love keeping a notebook with me. Its lighter than my laptop and sometimes the ideas come out better on paper than they do on  a keyboard.

Do you guys have any favorite tools for NaNo? Were you already a daily writer or is this your first time sitting down like this? Are you guys on track or — dare I say it — ahead? Or are you playing the catch up game like me?


6 Comments Add yours

  1. Ana Love says:

    I loved this post! This is my first real attempt at writing a novel so I’ve never been a daily writer, but so far I’m loving it. I also use Scrivener and carry a notebook to write in during classes.

    I hit 10k last night so I’m kinda ahead, but not by much. I’m hoping to bulk up on words now since the end of November consists of papers, presentations, and tests so I probably won’t have much time then.


    1. zengirl42 says:

      After initially getting behind, I had been so tired from work the last few days that I haven’t hit my personal goal for getting back on track. Hopefully this weekend will prove fruitful in getting back to and past were I need to be 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Camryn says:

    I’m actually ahead, somehow. I really pushed myself the first two days, because I was afraid I would fall behind on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday because of stuff I had planned, but I managed to make more time for writing than expected.
    The best advice I can give you is to set aside time for writing, don’t try and write in five or ten minute breaks.


    1. zengirl42 says:

      I try to do that, work has just gotten in the way this week. Do you schedule yourself for writing, like same time every day, or just set aside the time? I’m always curious as to how people work.


      1. Camryn says:

        I write every night after school, that’s how I do it.


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