Preparing for NaNoWriMo by writing a short story

So National Novel Writing Month started. This is the first year I'm going to attempt it, with the goal of 55,000 words, not just 50,000. I am planning a series with two other authors, and this seemed like perfect timing to try writing an entire novel in a month.

I started drafting this blog post October 31st, while coming down from a Halloween candy sugar high, instead of plotting. I am not done with my plotting, not even a little bit. My post about cooking without a recipe mentions that I don't feel quite ready to write without a plan, so I am naturally very nervous about this.

What I do have, is the folders all set up in Scrivener, so that's something. I have several pages in a notebook with ideas scribbled in a more or less orderly fashion. And I have a 13,000 word short story that I wrote in the past 2 weeks.

Wait, how is writing a short story preparation for plotting a novel?

Well, it's in the same genre. So my mind is already in the contemporary YA romance space.

Also, in order to finish the story before NaNo started, I had to write every day, so that's already a habit.

Finally, it was reassuring to actually finish something, which is what NaNo is really trying to help people with. Reaching a goal.

So while I'm understandably nervous about heading into this without the detailed outline I was hoping for (which for me really does speed up my writing to over 2000/hour), I'm not in a total panic yet.


Update on November 11th: I am still not in a panic! I am on target for word count, so the very basic goal of "winning" Nano by writing 50,000 words in a month is feeling very achievable.

I know the words I'm getting down will need a lot of editing, but I can literally feel this experience helping me. I'm learning about myself, my writing style, and how my brain figures out story structure. And it's only been 10 days!

Stay tuned for my full NaNoWriMo recap post in early December!

Are you attempting NaNoWriMo? How's it going?