One important part of preparing for NaNo is clearing time in your schedule to write. Of course, some non-writing events have to exist. If you have a day job, you’ll have to work it unless you are lucky enough to have some time-off to spare. If you have kids, I suppose you might have to take care of them in November too. And maybe there’s that TV show or sport you just can’t miss.
I have choir on Monday nights, several scheduled (and unscheduled) work outs, plus work, though I did manipulate my schedule to have that first day off by working the preceding Sunday. But, overall, I’m going to have times when I can’t write.
But there are some ways to clear your schedule around those things, and you can prepare them now in this last week before November.
- Chores: Laundry, cleaning the kitchen and bathrooms, dusting, vacuuming. The more of these you can get done at the end of October, the less you’ll have that nagging feeling that you need to do them.
- Cooking: It’s pretty hard to cook ahead for 30 days, but if you make something on Halloween (in between the candy) that has a lot of leftovers, you’ll get a good start on the month, at least. Then you can decide if you’re going to spend the rest of the month eating pizza, ramen, and Panera or not. That decision leads us to…
- Shopping. Know that you’re going to need something later in November? Buy it now, if you can. Christmas shopping can be started in October, and then with that head start, you won’t feel so panicked about leaving the rest for December. Plan your groceries for things that are easy to make and that sit well for the month
- Clearing the air: If you’re like me, nothing puts a bigger damper on your writing high than being mad about real life issues. If something’s been building, November is not the time for it to explode. It may be scary, but working out real world problems in this last week of October–as much as they can be anyway–could save your November concentration.
- Voting: Why would they put the election right at the beginning of National Novel Writing Month? What were they thinking? Well, there’s always writing while in line (I did that in 2008), but some states have early voting, so I took advantage of that this time around.
That’s all the prep I can think of for now. Do you have any things you do in advance to avoid real life distractions in November?
Lots of love,