Leah Cutter writes page-turning, wildly imaginative fiction set in exotic locations, such as a magical New Orleans, the ancient Orient, rural Kentucky, Seattle, Minneapolis, and many others.

She writes fantasy, science fiction, mystery, literary, and horror fiction. Her short fiction has been published in magazines like Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, anthologies like Fiction River, and on the web. Her long fiction has been published both by New York publishers as well as small presses.

Read more books by Leah Cutter at www.KnottedRoadPress.com

Follow her blog at www.LeahCutter.com.

Business for Breakfast Vol. 13: NaNoWriMo for the Rest of Us by Leah Cutter

NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month - when people all over the world decide to write an entire novel - 50,000 words - during the month of November.

Do those other NaNo books discourage you? The ones that require daily check-ins, logs, and spreadsheets? What if you're not a project manager, but really an artist at heart?

This book isn't like those. Instead, it's about finding YOUR process, determining what works best for you, as well as finding joy in the writing.

From the planning you need to do before November 1st to get you into the midst of it easier, this book steps you through the process of what you should do for November, and then how to go about organizing that book come January first.

If you're a new writer just starting out, or a more experienced hand who's dreading their annual commitment come November, this book will give you a different approach to NaNo.

Topics include:
Outlining or not?
Building the Writing Habit
The Voices Outside of You
Finishing up

The Business for Breakfast series contains bite-sized business advice. This is a 101 level book, with beginning-level advice for the professional writer.

Be sure to read all the books in this series!




There are a lot (seriously, a lot) of writing books out there. I've already written a few (https://www.knottedroadpress.com/series/business-for-breakfast/). What makes this one different? Why should you pick this one up? How am I going to help you with NaNoWriMo?

First of all, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. (https://www.nanowrimo.org/) It takes place in November each year. A bunch of people from all around the world commit to writing 50,000 words during the month. That averages out to 1666 words per day, every day of the month.

I am a full time professional writer. Recently, I finished writing my fortieth novel. (Yes, that's 4-0. It kind of astonishes me as well.) I regularly write 50K words in a month. 50K is actually kind of a slow month for me, what I consider the minimum I should write in any given month.

Therefore, I have a something of a clue when it comes to writing as well as writing novels.

Next, I am not just a writer. I am also an artist.

My first reaction when I started looking at the existing NaNoWriMo books was basically, "F*ck you."

Let me explain. As I said, I am an artist. I don't like rules. I do not do well reporting on things every day. I do not necessarily work and play well with others. I am self-motivated, self-directed.

Almost every book for doing NaNoWriMo involves workbooks, spreadsheets (or spread-shits as I like to call them), project management and so on.

That sort of approach personally offends me.

Do I keep track of my writing daily? Yes, in a system that I've developed over the years.

Do I live or die by my word count? Plan out my entire project? Need someone to hold my hand as I'm writing?

Hell no.

And you don't either. There are other ways to be inspired about writing, to keep track and to write a novel in a month, even if you've never done it before.

So this NaNoWriMo book is for everyone else. For the regular person who just wants to write. For the artist who hates the tracking. It isn't for the project manager. Yes, you're going to need to figure out your time. You're going to have to think about your story, however you need to. You're going to have to put in the work.

You are going to have to want to do it bad enough to actually do it.

However, writing or committing art is about joy and having fun. If you aren't having fun, then why the hell are you putting yourself through this pain?

Trust me. It's much easier to sit down and write every day if you're excited about it. No amount of discipline or reporting is going to give you that.

This NaNoWriMo book assumes that you're an adult and can handle your time. Sure, I'll give you some tips. I do write a lot and I have had to come up with systems. But I'm not going to insist that you check in on some stupid workbook every day. F— that. I'm not even going to advise you to write every day.

NaNoWriMo, or any sort of large art project, is all about the numbers. Suppose that you plan on just working five days a week, not seven. That's 2500 words per day, instead of 1666. Is that a better fit for your schedule? Or do you need to just do 1000 words per day during the work week, then do more on the weekends? Your goal is 11,662 words per week. So maybe you do 5000 during the week and 6662 on the weekend, or 3331 on both Saturday and Sunday.

It's really up to you what your schedule will be.

It is all doable. Lots of people do it every year.

That's the other thing that is a bit different about this book compared to the others. They all have cheerleading sections. This is a cheerleading section from someone who has done it multiple times. As I said, almost every month. I know what you're going through better than most.

You can do this.

Plus, I'm going to tell you what you should do come January first. As well as give you some resources to help you move onto the next phase. Because while writing a book is awesome, there are things you should do with it afterward.

Are you ready?

Let's go.