Writing Resources

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Camp Events
Camp Counselors
Non-Novel Resources
Novel Resources

The great thing about Camp NaNoWriMo is that you don’t write alone. Whether you’re tackling a first draft or a seventh, a script or a memoir, there are writers who’ve forged similar paths, ready to offer their help.

Check out inspiration, advice, and encouragement from these trailblazing authors as you set out to discover your creativity.

Have questions about using the Camp site? See our FAQs.

 


Events

To see what time an event starts in your time zone, click into the event, then click “copy to my calendar”.

 


Camp Counselors

Each Camp session, we’re joined by published authors who act as “counselors” in your Camp Messages inbox and on our blog. This July, they’ll be dispensing words of wisdom, advice, and encouragement to all our NaNo Campers:

Your Current Camp Counselor:

Our 2017 Camp Counselors have hung up their caps! Thanks to all the wonderful advice from both our April and July counselors. If you liked their advice, be sure to join us in November for more words of wisdom from our NaNo Coaches.

July 2017 Camp Counselors

Alexandra DuncanAlexandra Duncan is an author and librarian. Her YA sci-fi novels, Salvage and Sound, are available from Greenwillow Books, as is her forthcoming eco-thriller, Blight. She loves learning new things, especially anything that lets her get her hands dirty–pie-baking, leatherworking, gardening, drawing, and rolling sushi. She lives with her husband and two monstrous, furry cats in the mountains of Western North Carolina.

In partnership with We Need Diverse Books.

 

Amanda LovelaceAmanda Lovelace is the winner of the 2016 Goodreads Choice Award for Best Poetry with her debut collection, the princess saves herself in this one. She has been a poet for fifteen years. Currently she resides alongside her poet fiancé in a very small town in New Jersey known for its open mic scene. As you can see, poetry is her life, and she wants nothing more than to inspire others to begin their own journey into this enchanted world.

In partnership with We Need Diverse Books.

 

Maurene GooMaurene Goo grew up in a Los Angeles suburb surrounded by floral wallpaper and piles of books. She is the author of Since You Asked… and I Believe in a Thing Called Love and has very strong feelings about tacos and houseplants. You can find her in Los Angeles with her husband and two cats–one weird, one even more weird.

In partnership with We Need Diverse Books.

 


Patrice Caldwell
Patrice Caldwell
is a twentysomething introvert gone wild. By day, she’s a book editor, and by night, weekend, and early morning (if she’s had enough green tea) she’s a writer. You can learn more about Patrice, her writing, editorial wishlist, favorite books, and general musings at her website. You can also find her on Twitter, her secondary home.

In partnership with We Need Diverse Books.

 


Sona Charaipotra
Sona Charaipotra
is not a doctor—much to her parents’ chagrin. They were really hoping she’d grow up to take over their pediatrics practice one day. Instead, she became a writer, working first as a celebrity reporter at People and (the dearly departed) TeenPeople magazines, and contributing to publications from the New York Times to TeenVogue. She’s the co-founder of CAKE Literary, a boutique book packaging company with a decidedly diverse bent, and the co-author of the YA dance dramas Tiny Pretty Things and Shiny Broken Pieces. She’s also proud to serve as the head of content for the non-profit We Need Diverse Books.

In partnership with We Need Diverse Books.

 


Non-Novel Projects

We encourage a huge variety of writing during each Camp session. Here are guides to just a few of the projects our participants have worked on.

Editing: A Resource Guide

Epic Poems: How to Tackle Them

Flash Fiction: Why to Write It

Nonfiction: A Resource Guide

Poetry: Why to Write It

Prewriting: How to Tackle It

Scripts: A Resource Guide

Graphic Novels: Writing Tips

 

See our word-count guidelines for non-novel projects.

 


Expert Advice

We keep an archive of advice from our Camp Counselors in past years. Click through the questions, or check back for a chance to ask your own!

Planning

How do I decide what to write?

What’s better: planning or pantsing?

How much research should I do? (I)

How much research should I do? (II)

How do I create a unique world?

How do I make sure my plot is compelling?

How do I plan out a trilogy?

Beginnings

What needs to be in a first chapter?

How do I make exposition exciting?

How do I develop my setting?

How do I meld genres?

Characters

How do I create realistic characters?

How do I come up with good character names?

How do I write a convincing villain?

How do I develop supporting characters?

How do I keep each character’s voice fresh?

How do I avoid writing a “Mary Sue” character?

Scenes

How do I find the right words for a scene?

How do I balance dialogue, action, and description?

How do I avoid over-description?

How do I use humor in serious scenes?

How do I write good “issue” scenes?

Structure

How do I deal with transitions?

Should I write scenes sequentially?

How do I user foreshadowing?

How do I keep the middle of the novel from sagging?

Language and Dialogue

How do I write dialogue that drives my plot?

How do I write a character’s inner dialogue?

How do I avoid cheesy dialogue?

How do I “un-blandify” my writing?

How much “technobabble” is too much?

Clichés

How do I avoid clichés?

How do I write a non-cliché love triangle?

How do I avoid…

“Letting out a breath”?

Hate-at-first-sight love stories?

Visiting a character’s childhood home?

“Mirror” character descriptions?

Food-based character descriptions?

Endings

How do I escalate conflict and wrap up toward an ending?

How do I know when my story is finished?

How do I write a satisfying ending?

Revision

How do I start editing my story?

How do I get some distance while editing?

The Writing Life

How do I make myself write?

How do I escape writer’s block?

How do I balance writing and “real life”? (I)

How do I balance writing and “real life”? (II)

How do I stop editing while I write?

Should I let my friends read my work-in-progress?

How do I query an agent?