If you’ve been jumping around in your novel, like I have, instead of writing in a linear fashion, you might have already written your favorite scenes.
…But you still have 2/3 of a novel to write!
That’s why NOW is the perfect time to engage in some writing prompts to get the creative juices flowing and meet that word count. Remember that National Novel Writing Month is about getting your novel on paper—it’s not about making it perfect or going back and polishing up everything that you write. It’s okay to write scenes that might not end up making it into your finished draft.
Take this time, when you might be struggling to reach your daily word count, as an opportunity to get to know your characters and flesh out the plot.
Here are some writing prompts to get you started! Try writing…
- A full 2- to 5-minute sequence of every single thought your main character has. Does anything surprise you? What can you learn about your protagonist?
- The exact scene you’ve already written but from another character’s point of view.
- A letter or some kind of written correspondence between your protagonist and antagonist. What do they have to say to one another?
- An “in-between” scene: a scene that occurs between two scenes you’ve already written. Maybe it’s what happens to your characters when they’re driving from one location to another, or what they did when they woke up this morning.
- A detailed description of the house that your character lives in, or what your favorite character looks like (down to the last freckle!).
- In a different style than you usually would. If you’re more into writing dialogue, try your hand at descriptive writing. If you prefer to be especially wordy, experiment with writing just the bare facts.
- An experience your main character had as a child that has helped to shape who they are today.
- A day in the life of your antagonist. What made them what they are?
- A different version of events in a scene you’ve already written (or a different ending from what you have planned). What if it rained and prevented your main character from ever meeting her love interest? What if a secondary character never showed up when they were supposed to?
- The prologue or epilogue to your book. What comes immediately before and after your narrative?
Hopefully this will give you some inspiration to meet (and maybe even exceed!) your word count this week. Happy writing!