Very few writers have a perfectly open schedule. With full-time jobs, commuting, families, friends, parties, pets, great movies, annoying neighbors, mowing the lawn, raking leaves, shoveling snow, making dinner, cleaning the house (did I mention great movies?), finding time to write can feel like trying to find oxygen in outer space.
When you do find time to write for NaNoWriMo, you’re likely going to be frustrated you can’t hit your daily word goals. Fortunately, there’s a sliver of hope: Weekends.
Is it weird I need to even mention this? NaNoWriMo isn’t supposed to make you a crazed killer ala. The Shining. If you’re writing, “All work and no play make Jack a dull boy,” then you’ve got a problem.
Don’t be Jack Torrance. Have fun!
Writing is work but its also a ton of fun. It’s easy to let the work aspect get in the way.
But, frankly, writing isn’t supposed to be a chore. If you aren’t having fun while you’re writing, then maybe you’re in a bad mood or, honestly, hate to say it, but writing isn’t for you.
Most writers start because it’s a wicked good time. It feels good to create worlds, rules, stories, and characters and like reading it teleports you to another place. You get to feel and tap into emotions lying dormant. You get to be all these different people. Most of all, you have control.
Writing is the ultimate choose your own adventure. If that isn’t fun, I don’t know what is. So, if you’re stressing, stop it.
Allow yourself to hop in and enjoy the ride. Once you get loosey-goosey and you’re having fun, you’ll be so addicted to writing you won’t want to stop.
One of the greatest mistakes a fiction writer can make is not understanding the genre they are writing in. Most writers have a general idea of genre. Some are hands down obsessed with the nooks and crannies of it. However, only a handful of writers really get the tropes, conventions, and expectations built within any genre.
Genre is expectation. It’s the audience’s expectations of the writer. From front to back, the audience wants to know exactly what they’re getting into. That’s genre.
Since the last thing you want to do is ruin their audiences experience, let’s dig into how you can avoid it. Here are some ways to help you understand your genre.
At one point in time you’ve read a novel or watched a movie and finished it saying, “Man, that was too preachy.” Some say on the nose, cheesy, spoon-fed, or in your face, but what they really mean is the writer didn’t use subtext to get across a message but rather used exposition in the dialogue or narration.
We’ll call this writer Captain Obvious. You don’t want to be Captain Obvious.
Here are a few reasons why: