To NaNo: to write your pants off

Join us for NaNoWriMo, the fun, seat-of-your-pants way to start your novel!


Do you love to write? Got an idea stuck in your head that just won’t quit?
NaNoWriMo might be just what you need!

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) occurs each year in November. The challenge: to write 50,000 words of a novel in one month. Sounds rough, right? This fall, we’ll guide you through preparing to write your novel (starting in September), and you’ll join a community of other writers in our area to get your ideas down on paper.

Join us Wednesday, October 28 at 7pm to discuss what you plan to write. We’ll be meeting each Wednesday night through November for write-ins, peer workshops, and support. To join the Zoom meeting, visit:

Follow the steps below to join the Plain City Public Library NaNoWriMo group where we’ll have access to message boards, goal-setting, and progress trackers to get prepared for midnight on November 1st when we’ll hit the ground running and get your novel going!

To get started:

1. Create a personal account on

2. Once you create your account, join the Plain City Public Library NaNoWriMo group by emailing your username to Adult Services Librarian, Hilary Harlan at

3. Follow along with our updates to the NaNoWriMo writing group and on social media each week to get prepped to start your Novel in November. We’ll be prompting things like developing your characters, creating your setting, and outlining your story – all to make sure you’re ready to write your pants off come November 1st!

4. Starting October 28, join the PC Library NaNoWriMo group on Zoom each Wednesday at 7pm to discuss what you’re writing, to take time to write together, and to work out any writers’ block.

That’s it! Check back here for weekly updates, and we’ll see you online in person on October 28! Email or call Adult Services Librarian, Hilary Harlan at 614-873-4912 ext. 130 with any questions.

Preparation: Week 1

Develop a Storyline

NaNoWriMo Prep Week 1

Time to get prepping! For the week of September 14, start thinking about your story – what do you want to write about? Got an idea for a character? Time to explore that. Try this:

1. Come up with three ideas for your novel.

2. Write a publisher’s blurb for each idea. What would the back cover of your novel say?

3. Which blurb did you enjoy writing the most? Try fleshing out that idea a little more.

For more information and other story development ideas, visit


Preparation: Week 2

Create Complex Characters

NaNoWriMo Prep Week 2

Another week closer to NaNoWriMo, and on September 21, it’s time to start creating your complex characters. Who is going to drive your story? Try this:

1. Think about your character’s motivation – what drives them to move the plot along?

2. How will your character grow throughout the story?

3. What’s in your character’s bag? What props does your character always have on them? A toothpick in their mouth? A pencil behind the ear? These small characteristics will flesh out your character and make them believable and lifelike.

For a great resource to help you develop your characters, visit the NaNo Prep 101 Week 2 Exercise.


Preparation: Week 3

NaNoWriMo Prep Week 3

NaNoWriMo Prep Week 3

Time to start plotting your novel! Starting September 27, start constructing a detailed plot or outline. Don’t know where to start? Take NaNoWriMo’s Plot Methods Quiz to see which method might work best for you and start experimenting!

For more ideas and guidance, visit NaNo Prep 101 Week 3.





Preparation: Week 4

Build a Strong World

NaNoWriMo Prep Week 4

The week of October 5 is the perfect time to start developing your world! Here are some questions about your world to get you started:

1. If you’re writing fantasy, how long has your world existed?

2. What season is it in your world?

3. What are some details you can use from real-world places  that are similar to your world to make it feel more believable?

For more questions to ask yourself about your world, visit NaNoWriMo’s 20 Questions to Ask Yourself When Worldbuilding. Then for more tips and tricks, visit NaNo Prep 101 Week 4.


Preparation: Week 5

NaNoWriMo Prep Week 5

NaNoWriMo Prep Week 5

Do your research! A well thought-out and well-researched story can make all the difference! Planning to write a historical romance set in the late 1800’s? Researching the type of dress, curse words, and social norms of the time period will go a long way to making your characters and your world believable.

For tips on researching your novel, visit 21 Ways to Research your Novel by Catia Shattuck.




Last Updated 10/9/2020