How to Tackle NaNoWriMo: My Advice To You (Day 4 of Countdown) #NaNoWriMo #Writing


A while ago, when I first started this blog, I made mention of separate documents that I keep alongside each novel that I work on. Now to be clear, this document is NOT an Outline. It is what I call a “Spice Rack.”

pexels-photo-256318Assuming (again) that you are already a seasoned writer, I am pretty sure you are familiar with the process of your creativity “jumping ahead” of your story as you write it. For example, you may be working on chapter five when suddenly some thrilling scene pops in your head that has nothing to do with the current flow of the story BUT it somehow fits, like a glimpse into the future. You just don’t know where.


If you are smart, YOU WRITE IT DOWN IMMEDIATELY! and you store what you have written in the, you guessed it, spice rack document. (And when I say write it down, I don’t mean write ABOUT it, I mean actually WRITE it as if that is where you are in the novel. This will save you time later and give you the full feeling of your characters’ future selves.)

These scenes may not fit immediately into the storyline, but they do count toward your daily word count and overall word count goal. As you continue writing you will surely find out that this ‘homeless’ scene you took a pause to build early on around ‘chapter five’ was actually the climax of Chapter twenty-seven! (Glad you wrote it down when it came to you, aren’t you? )


Keep in mind that writing a novel is kind of like making soup from scratch. You have all the basic ingredients, but as the stock is cooking there are times that you taste test it and find that it just needs something to give it that little extra kick. What do you do? You go to your spice rack.

As you grow deeper into your novel during NaNoWriMo, you will draw toward moments where you just feel like something is missing. This is where you open up your spice rack document and grab one of those seemingly out of place bits of writing that you cranked out of nowhere.

For me, there were conversations, heated ones, that my characters who hadn’t even met yet, were having somewhere in the future, and as I kept writing I subconsciously built my way into each one of those Spice Rack scenes.

I have actually been doing the “Spice Rack” since I was fourteen years old…I am now old enough to have a fourteen-year-old.

So here is another brief recap of NaNo Tokens:

TIP 1. Write anything. Let your imagination take control. (Click HERE for full article)

TIP 2. Have a reader who will look over your daily progress with an honest reader’s eye, and give you feedback. (Click HERE for full article)

TIP 3. Set a daily word count goal that you can manage. (Click HERE for full article

TIP 4. Keep a “SPICE RACK”  of ideas  and scenes in a separate word document

BONUS: Need a creative Springboard? Try this Monday’s Muse Writing Prompt to help get your NaNoWriMo Story going. Click HERE for the opening line! *REMEMBER TO OMIT THE OPENING LINE WORD COUNT FROM YOUR TOTAL WORDCOUNT*

Cheers! and Happy Writing!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!


Why do you Write?

“Do you write to impress or do you you write to improve?”

The thought suddenly came to my head. As I mentioned in my blog called “Establishing” it is always a good thing to go back to the beginning, remember the plan.

So is it to impress or improve, and if it is to impress, who exactly are you impressing? And if it is to improve, who and or what are you improving? What are you reasons?

I write, because I have fallen in love with the people who live in my head. No, I don’t need medication. I am talking about the characters that grow out of nothing but have such amazing stories to tell. At least to me their stories are amazing. I write because I give them a voice. I also write because if I leave them screaming on the inside of me I feel like my head is going to explode. I truly feel like I am going mad and I can’t think straight. I will admit that I become VERY grumpy and hard to communicate with. These are the main reasons why I write. I love to visit the worlds these voices live in, and for just a few moments escape the mundane and predictability of my own.

Apart from my self-serving reasons, I write because I like to share. If you go to the theater and see a movie that was a roller coaster ride from the opening credits to the very end, you want to share it with someone else. This is why I write. It is to improve and I suppose on some level to impress because isn’t giving delight a form of impression? I don’t know.

We are creative beings created by an imaginative, CREATIVE GOD. We are made in His image, not with fingers and toes and noses but with the power and the need to create. It is in our nature to give life, mold it, share it.

So why do you, fellow Soup Seeker, why do you take up your pen or punch the keyboard each day? ( I love the sound the keys make. It’s one of the best kinds of music.) Do you write to impress or to improve? I would love to hear your story.