NaNoWriMo Checklist

You’re insane to take on this challenge. And you’re courageous. Daring. Creative. Intelligent. You are a lot of things and this will be the month your limits will be crossed, your patience tested. With yourself? Yes. With everyone around you? Definitely yes. If you chose to begin last minute, there’s absolutely no shame in this. Here’s what you should have been done, according to the NaNoWriMo prep calendar:

  1. An Idea:
    1. Protagonist(s).
    2. Flaw(s). What is(are) the protagonist’s major flaw(s)?
    3. Goal(s). What does the protagonist want?
    4. Conflict. What is keeping them from their goal?
    5. Antagonist(s). Who(what) is creating the conflict?
  2. Theme and Genre
  3. Character List
    1. Major and minor
    2. Bio’s for each one including physical description
    3. Use excel so you can easily update character information or a writing software
  4. Protagonist profile
    1. name, age, physical attributes, occupation, education, culture, religion, family, relationship status, personality, likes, dislikes, strengths, weakness, motivations, and desires.
    2. Protagonist voice
  5. Antagonist profile (same as above plus the inner conflict)
    1. Antagonist voice
  6. Free style and extended brainstorming
  7. First draft of Outline!
  8. Chronological Timeline
  9. Cultural setting
  10. Research or worldbuilding
  11. Protagonist background story
  12. Minor character backstories
  13. Second draft Outline
  14. Antagonist background story
  15. Definition list
  16. Object description
  17. Third Outline
  18. Complications
  19. Protagonist change
    1. Protagonist interview
  20. Plot background story
  21. Market definition
  22. Setting list (and database)
  23. Freestyle brainstorming
  24. Setting description 2
  25. Idea/Premise Revision

Yeah…that’s a lot to think about but just because you are starting a few days late doesn’t mean you can’t keep up. Cross off what you’ve done and take a short break to brainstorm what you need to fill in so when you get to that part/scene, you at least have a few ideas to fall back on.

If you’re still stuck, check out these tips from Editor Sandy.

So good luck and keep us posted!

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