Last Minute Tips for Camp NaNoWriMo

1425675574Every April, the WriteOnSisters take part in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge, but we felt it was important to support our pals over at Camp NaNoWriMo too.

For this year’s A to Z Challenge, everyday (except Sundays) we will be blasting our way through the alphabet by sharing our best writing tips.

These posts will be bite-sized and perfect for campfire side reading while you’re letting your laptop keys cool down.

To introduce our challenge theme and to help launch both events, we’re having a pre-flight checkout:




 3,  2,  1 … BLAST OFF!

Tips for Camp NaNoWriMo Success.




3 Planning Tips:
Create a project binder.
Don’t trust to memory and don’t leave your research on your computer. Once you start hunting around for files, or changing screen views, you are no longer writing. Print out everything. Research notes, character sheets, historical timelines and Pinterest photos. Load everything into your binder. Now use organizational tools like colored tabs, highlighters and folder pockets to categorize your notes. Turn your project binder into a powerful asset, one that will see you through a long hard month of writing and into the revisions stage.

Block out an activities calendar.
Whoever heard of a camp running without a schedule of events? Make a plan and share it with your support system. Ask family and friends to pitch in and help clear away those extra obligations. Remember to allow for downtime. You will want to hang out with you new NaNo buddies, gather fresh inspiration and seek craft guidance from other writers. However, once you’ve allocate time to writing, don’t change the plan. Set a timer and stick to the schedule. Don’t forget you can always get an internet blocker program if your bunkmates prove too social to get any work done.

Start today!
It takes a few visits to settle into the NaNoWriMo community and get comfy. Fill out your profile and stake out a sunny spot in the forums to call your own. Spend the weekend creating the perfect playlist, or cleaning up your work space. Shop for those extra supplies, index cards, gum, or a new stick-drive so you can back-up your masterpiece. Don’t waste a single moment. Jump into Camp NaNo next week ready for action.

2 Examples of Fast Craft:
There are several notable examples of quickly written books that have stood the test of time, Dr_Jekyll_and_Mr_Hyde_poster_edit2particularly novellas.
Confined to bed by an illness, Robert Louis Stevenson produced the first draft of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in under a week and finished the revisions some 6 weeks later.

Under the crippling influence of debts and already working on the book that would become his literary masterpiece, Fyodor Dostoyevsky hired a stenographer and dictated the semi-autobiographical novella The Gambler in just 26 days. He gave away the book’s royalties to clear his debts and married the stenographer.

1 Link for more NaNoWriMo help:
15 Story Beats to Keep Your NaNoWriMo Novel on Track
This post is one of our most popular and it’s the blueprint for any perfectly structured story. Plus, it’s packed with helpful links.

Lastly, an inspiring space quote to keep you going…

Mae Jemison
First African-American Woman in Space

Author: Robin Rivera

Robin trained as a professional historian and worked as a museum curator, educator, and historical consultant. She writes mystery fiction, with diverse characters and a touch of snark. She's currently working on two new manuscripts that started off as NaNoWriMo projects. You can follow her on Facebook( However, Pinterest ( is where her inner magpie is happiest of all.

10 thoughts on “Last Minute Tips for Camp NaNoWriMo”

  1. Last year I participated in the A to Z and this year Camp NaNo. I can’t find enough hours in the day to do both. I am making a point of visiting as many sites on the A to Z list that I can find time for though. 🙂

    1. Hi Rhonda, I couldn’t do both, no way. You have my total admiration for even considering it. I’ve only ever done November NaNo, but I want to do Camp one of these years, it looks so fun. Good luck with Camp NaNo!

  2. Thank you for such a great collection of tips and encouragement on the eve of Camp NaNoWriMo 2015. This is definitely a resource worth returning to–not only for writers participating in Camp NaNoWriMo this April and July but for every writer at any time.

    Kudos on a great article, Robin. And to those who are about to write? I salute you.

    1. Hi Jess,
      Thanks! NaNo is always such a big experience for any writer, we like to show support when we can. I think we have about ten posts on it. I guess it’s time we give NaNo and Camp NaNo its own category in our archives. : )

    1. Hi Haneen,
      Welcome! We’re glad to have another author on the April journey with us. Good luck with both your challenges! That’s a lot to tackle!

  3. Hi Alex,
    Both are in April. That’s why we’re doing our planning tips this week. Once Camp Nano starts there isn’t a moment to spare for planning. : )

We love comments and questions.

%d bloggers like this: