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More Planning for NaNoWriMo


Last week, I was listening to this podcast called Story Grid. It was recommended to me by another author and I have to say that it’s been pretty informative. I’ve decided to follow along while planning my NaNoWriMo novel. Granted, I’ve only listened to five episodes… I was going pretty strong a few months ago, listening to one a day, but then life came, I got distracted, and finally listened to the fifth episode on Friday.

So, they were talking about not wasting 100,000 words. You don’t want to write your novel and then have it turn out to be a bunch of words and no cohesive story! That’s my worst nightmare when it comes to writing in longform such as a novel.

What Shawn Coyne (the author of Story Grid) recommended was to write your obligatory scene. An obligatory scene, from what I understand, is the scene that happens in every story in the genre that you’re writing. So, the example they used was the crime story and the obligatory scene would be “discovering the crime scene”.

I listened to that and was like… damn I need to write my obligatory scene. But, my genre isn’t a crime novel, thriller, science fiction, or romance. I realize that I don’t really know fiction genres as well as I thought I did. If I had to place a specific genre to this novel, the closest would be tragedy/drama. So, I don’t really know what my obligatory scene SHOULD be. But I do know what scene I want to have for my inciting incident. And I think I’m going to just use that for my obligatory scene.

I also realized that in the past, I never really outlined my chapters. Like I had mentioned in an older post, I am not a plotter whatsoever. So this is my first attempt at “plotting” my novel.

This week in my planning I will:

  1. outline chapter events

  2. write obligatory scene

  3. outline character arcs

Also, the other night I decided that my new novel will be written in three point of views! I will have first person point of view for both characters and there will be a third person point of view for when both characters are together. My current dilemma is whether I want the readers to know what my characters are thinking and feeling. I kind of want to have just an objective point of view when they are together… like the reader is just watching their interactions from afar. But, I always love writing third person omniscient point of view because it’s fun to hear the character’s thoughts.

I’m leaning towards writing in objective because of the challenge it proposes. I do need to learn to take myself out of my comfort zone and be able to write in different perspectives so I’m not stuck in a corner when it comes to my writing.

I’ll probably change my mind again from now until November. That’s the beauty of planning, I guess. You have the freedom to figure out whatever it is you want.

I’ve never felt so motivated to plan something, so it scares me when I’m like “Okay, this is what I’m going to do.” I don’t like making my goals public, but I feel like sharing this with all of you will hold me accountable and I will end up achieving my goals to prove to you all that I can do it. I don’t like disappointing people and especially myself. So in a way, this blog is like my personal tool to keep myself on track when it comes to meeting my writing goals.

I will share my progress on my planning throughout the week on my facebook and instagram — so please follow them and cheer me on… and I’ll follow back to cheer you on as well.

What other writing podcasts do you listen to? Tell me how you’re planning is going in the comments below.

Thanks for reading!



Hey guys I have a survey out about how you as a writer manage to balance life while writing. It’s going to be my follow up to my Accountability post. I’d love for you to fill it out so I can have a ton of suggestions and facts to put on my next post. If you want me to tag or quote you let me know.

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