Brainstorming ideas for Preptober, the preparation month leading up to National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), is an exciting and crucial step to ensure a successful writing project. Here’s a structured approach to help you generate ideas:
- Set Clear Goals:
Start by defining your objectives for NaNoWriMo. What do you want to achieve with your novel? Is it to complete a first draft, experiment with a new genre, or simply enjoy the writing process? Having clear goals will guide your brainstorming.
- Choose a Genre and Theme:
Decide on the genre and theme of your novel. Are you interested in science fiction, fantasy, romance, mystery, or another genre? Consider the themes or messages you want to explore within that genre.
- Character Development:
Create detailed character profiles for your main characters. Think about their backgrounds, motivations, flaws, and how they change throughout the story. You can use character questionnaires or brainstorming exercises to flesh them out.
- Plot Structure:
Outline the basic structure of your story. Will you follow a three-act structure, a hero’s journey, or something entirely unique? Map out the major plot points, including the inciting incident, climax, and resolution.
If your story takes place in a unique or fictional world, spend time developing it. Consider the rules, cultures, history, and geography of your world. World-building can add depth to your narrative.
- Conflict and Stakes:
Think about the central conflict of your story and the stakes involved. What is at risk for your characters? How will they grow and change as a result of the conflict?
If your story requires specialized knowledge or settings, conduct research during Preptober. This could include historical research, interviews, or exploring real-world locations.
- Create a Scene List:
Outline the major scenes and chapters of your novel. This doesn’t have to be detailed, but it helps you visualize the structure and progression of your story.
- Writing Prompts:
Use writing prompts to spark creativity. You can find prompts online or in writing books. These exercises can lead to unexpected ideas and help you explore different aspects of your story.
- Mind Mapping and Visual Aids:
Create mind maps or visual aids to organize your ideas. Visualizing connections between characters, plot points, and themes can be incredibly helpful.
- Collaborate and Seek Feedback:
If you’re comfortable with it, discuss your ideas with writing friends or peers. They might offer valuable insights or suggestions.
- Stay Flexible:
Remember that your ideas can evolve during the writing process. It’s okay to make adjustments as you go along. Preptober is about preparation, but creativity often flows best when you’re in the midst of writing.
- Organize and Plan:
Finally, organize your ideas into a cohesive plan. Create a writing schedule, set word count goals, and prepare any tools or software you’ll need for NaNoWriMo in November.
Preptober is all about setting the stage for a successful writing month. By brainstorming and planning thoroughly, you’ll be better equipped to tackle the challenge of writing a novel during NaNoWriMo.