Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead. -- Gene Fowler

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Preparing for NaNoWriMo

Looking around on the NaNo site has inspired me for this year's marathon. I'll need to tidy up my study, which looks at least a little bit like a bomb hit it, and get my tools arranged. I tend to grab a Moleskine cahier for my noveling notes, though I never use the entire thing.
I'll need to select one or two special writing utensils, hopefully from the massive collection I already own, to be my faithful companions, along with my laptop computer, this year. There are always a couple of standouts amongst my pens and pencils, a few with just that extra sprinkle of awesomeness. I'm particularly fond of Sakura Gelly Roll pens, though the glittery ones have heavy ink I dislike. They're cheap, though on certain ones I've bought ink flow can be a problem. My old standby, the green and blue fountain pen, is usually near to hand, and I've enlisted any number of gel pens over the years.

Three years of noveling
I've got my handy thumb drive, which, though cluttered, has enough room for another NaNo masterpiece. Which reminds me: don't forget to save early and save often! I usually get into the habit very quickly of hitting the save function of whatever program I'm using during NaNo, such that I find myself typing Ctrl-S or its equivalent even when I'm not noveling. It's a good habit to have. Backups are also crucial. I tend to save my work to at least two, frequently three places, because you just never know. I also print out my daily work, in draft quality and often on scrap printer paper, so as to have a certain backup, as well as a physical reminder of the volume of my work. There's nothing like seeing a pile of paper slowly grow over the days, first clipped together with a paper clip, but rapidly outgrowing it and requiring a binder clip to keep it contained. And of course I complete each NaNo by picking up the packet and dropping it on a hard surface from a height of half a foot or so, just to hear the satisfying 'thunk' it makes. It's the thunk of accomplishment, and you can hear it too! Join me this year and take the journey down the crazy, inspired, painful, and joyous road!

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