Hi, SEers. It’s Mae Day on Story Empire. Can you believe October is in full swing? In a short while, we’ll be handing out Halloween goodies to ghosts and goblins during trick-or-treat. I hope you’ve been having a Spooktacular month. If you want to add to your fall fun, be sure to check out Story Empire’s Something Wicked Blog Tour which kicks off October 21 and runs all week.
The other event looming on the calendar is NaNoWriMo. Earlier this month, I shared some tips on “crushing” NaNo.” If you missed that post, you can find it HERE. I intend to participate this year and hope many SE readers will as well. I look forward to hearing all about your experiences, perhaps even buddying up on the NaNo website. Look for me there as “MythMaven.”
If NaNo is a marathon, then the best way to prepare for it is by doing sprints. Writing sprints! Have you ever participated in these? You can sprint alone, sprint with a buddy, or sprint with a group. If the goal of NaNo is to write, write, and write some more—without time to dwell on structure and editing—then the ideal warmup is to do the same in smaller allotments. The great thing about sprinting is that you determine the amount of time.
A few handy tips:
Know your project before you start
Stick with the same project rather than switching from one to another as you move through sprints
Find a place without distractions
Find a buddy to sprint with (not necessary but it is fun to compare results)
Turn off your cell phone!
Yeah, I can hear you now. You plan to set a timer on your cell, right? Well, what about all those pings and alerts for notifications, or unexpected text messages, even phone calls? You don’t want to be in the middle of a sprint and have the ringtone for Star Trek TNG (in my case) blaring from your cell. Nothing will kill momentum quicker than an unwanted distraction. You’re better using an old-fashioned method (kitchen timers work well).
Sprint for ten minutes, fifteen, twenty, even an hour. Lunch break, coffee break—the choice is yours. You might want to start small and build up. Sprints are a great way to flex your writing muscles and limber up for the big event come November.
Have you ever participated in a writing sprint? What do you think—do they sound like fun? Let’s talk sprinting and writing in the comments below . . .
Ready, set, go!