Getting Ready For NaNoWriMo 2016

November is right around the corner and while it may seem a little early, I've already started jotting down some notes and making my initial plans for this year's NaNoWriMo.

As I've mentioned elsewhere, I've been writing off and on for a really long time, despite the fact that Leech is the only thing I've actually released "into the wild." My process so far has been pretty nebulous, sometimes even to me, but I usually start with a strong scene or emotion and an idea of where I want to eventually take it. These broad strokes have lead to a stack of novels I've started, gotten fifty pages into, then abandoned, and a handful of novels that I've finished, but... if we're being honest... the less I talk about them the better.

So, as much as I consider myself a pantser, I've always worked from a bare outline that I've stuffed away somewhere in my mind. The idea of starting with very structured plan has seemed a little stiffling, as I'm worried it would crush some of those spontaneous ideas that come up in the middle of a writing session, but I am intrigued by the idea of having a more rigorous or structured outline and have been moving in that direction for a while now.

There are some great books on the subject. I really enjoyed Take Off Your Pants by Libbie Hawker and found some great tips in Rachel Aaron's 2k to 10k: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More Of What You Love. I've also taken a look at a few of the index card plotting models that people have posted online, such as Holly Lisle's Notecarding: Plotting Under Pressure, Mythcreants' Three Excuses To Use Office Supplies, Meagan Burgess' organizational method and this discussion on StackExchange.

In doing all of this research on plotting and pulling ideas from so many other, talented writers, I began to feel a little guilty about not offering any of my own advice into the world. So, I thought I would share a little about how I work, specifically writing in plain text, using Markdown for formating my writing, and finally moving all of that onto eBook stores.

This will be a multi-part series of articles. Hopefully some of you will find it useful, but first, a disclaimer: there are a hundred or more articles about how to create an eBook that will likely be much more coherent and interesting than this series of posts. If you take a little time to search the Amazon's virtual stacks you'll find entire books on the topic, so what you'll find here might not teach you anything surprising or new. Instead, what you'll find is my process for taking an idea in my head, putting it on "paper," then making it available on the various ebook platforms.

So, coming soon... Writing In Plain Text and Markdown!