How To Be Unprepared For NaNoWriMo

There are plenty of people who will happily tell you how to prepare for NaNoWriMo and what worked for them. (There are also plenty of people who will have no idea what NaNoWriMo is and when you inform them they will think you are completely crazy for trying to compete in it.) So if you want to know how to prepare for NaNo, ask them (the former, obviously), and you’ll be all set.

But what do you do if you want to be unprepared for NaNoWriMo?


For those of you wondering, here’s a handy guide.

Step One: Whatever you do, do not chase after those dwarves!

I mean, really. Going on an adventure with other people? That’s preposterous!

A proper adventurer—and therefore a proper writer—goes alone. A proper adventurer carries all his own supplies, encourages himself, and never asks for help.

Think of it this way. Writing a story is like a roller coaster, right? Well, NaNoWriMo is like a really fast roller coaster. And how do you ride a roller coaster? Holding very tightly onto the seat because there’s nobody beside you to hold onto, and screaming at the top of your lungs into the ear of…that person who isn’t actually sitting next to you.

Isolation is the best. You need nobody. After all, you’re like a one-writer band! You can do all the writing, all the brainstorming, all the encouraging, all the fighting of writer’s block, and all of the procrastinating, too!

Who needs other people?

Step Two: Run, run, as fast as you can, because you’re way more awesome than the gingerbread man!

As soon as November starts, write as fast as you possibly can and don’t stop. Don’t even slow. Just go! Pull some all-nighters.

Think of it this way. You’re hunting a dragon. It’s about, oh, two hundred times your size, but that’s no biggie. The reward—all that gold—is so amazing, you know you can just do it.

So you go up to the dragon and you slice off its tail, getting your sword stuck in that horribly sticky dragon blood that greatly resembles ooze, and then when it wakes and demands to know why you tried to de-tail it, you hurl all of the well-thought out insults you planned out back in October.

Then you realize you have no weapon and you used up all of your snarky comebacks. And it’s also only November 8th. But pshhh! You totally didn’t need to space out those retorts or have an epic duel with the dragon (that mostly involved running away from dragonfire until you had a delightfully clever, if half-fast, plan to eliminate the dragon).

Nah. That’s not necessary.

Step Three: Breakfast is a “fast break” for a reason

Breaks are for losers. You’ll lose valuable time. No, you should just keep going…and going…and going…and going…

And probably going some more…

It’s like this. You’re shoveling snow. Your back hurts. Your hands are numb. You forgot where your feet a—wait, you actually have feet?

Then your best friend offers you a mug of hot cocoa (or some other hot drink). Should you take it?

Of course not. You obviously have an entire month more of shoveling left to go! And you’re always telling yourself to never procrastinate. No procrastinating!

Hot cocoa = definitely procrastinating.

Never mind that those mythical feet you thought you used to have are lost and you aren’t going to find them in this snow.


If you follow all of these steps, you’ll be well on your way to a wonderful, totally unprepared NaNoWriMo!


4 thoughts on “How To Be Unprepared For NaNoWriMo

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