I’m going to be talking a lot over the next few weeks about the long nights, hard work, and general insanity that goes along with National Novel Writing month. Therefore, this week is dedicated to productive alternatives for those of you who want to get in on the spirit of the month, but aren’t up to or just plain don’t want to participate in the official challenge.
- Write an 100 word piece of flash fiction every day. On the 30th, you’ll have a wonderful collection of flash fiction to showcase.
- Write a story One Sentence a day. This will be be an exercise in patience. By the end of 30 days, you’ll be dying to write the rest of it.
- READ a new piece of writing every day. An essay, or a published short story, or someone’s online poetry. Becoming familiar with different styles and forms will make your own writing better.
- Make up a new character, or choose an old one, and learn one new thing about them per day. By December 1st, you’ll know them like they’re family.
- Keep a journal for 30 days, at one entry per day. You don’t have to write about writing, you can write about what you had for breakfast, or the weather. Keeping a journal is a great habit for writers, improving general craft and storing details for later projects.
- Come up with a one sentence idea for a novel or short story per day. It can be silly or serious, simple or involved. At the end of the month, you’ll have thirty seeds of inspiration to water.