We’re Halfway There!

Hey, gang, November is officially more than half over, which means Nanoers are heading toward the sloggy middle of their manuscripts!

For those of you who outline, you may have developed a nice plot line that’ll help guide you through the potential muck and slush of the-middle-of-the-novel, but those of you who are pansters may be stuck.

What’s a panster to do???

Well, here are some tips!

How to get un-stuck:

  • Skip a scene or three and write something that’ll get ya stoked about the story again.
  • Throw in a plot twist. (Didn’t know your character is allergic to peanuts? Have her hotter than hot love interest make her a peanut butter cup in the shape of a heart.) (The antagonist is actually the protagonist’s half-sister? Yikes!! Now what’re the characters gonna do?)
  • Free write using the POV of your main character. Just let them do the talking and see where it takes you. Inspiration may strike and you’ll be back on track again.
  • Remember Write or Die? Challenge yourself to a timed session there and I’ll guarantee you’ll be typing faster than your mind can think.
  • Sprint with some pals.
  • For God’s sake, take a freaking break and let your mind rest! Read a few chapters of the book you’ve set aside for the past two weeks. Go see Breaking Dawn. Let your unconscious (AKA subconscious) mind work things out. It’ll let you know when the problem is solved…Trust me. (You know those EUREKA! moments? That’s your unconscious giving you an answer.)
  • Take a walk. Physical exercise not only makes us healthier, it provides stress relief, and the scenery may just trigger an idea.
  • Check out Sarah’s Sisterhood of the Traveling Blog post on whether or not she Nanos. Then review Lydia’s and mine. 😉

Your turn to share you ideas of how to get through the sloggy middle!

10 comments on “We’re Halfway There!

  1. Sounds like good advice! I’m not doing it but good luck to everyone who is, keep going!

  2. Ciara Knight says:

    Great tips, Laura. I can use them right now. 🙂

  3. Vicki Tremper says:

    This is where I was last week and even I was bored by my plot. Next thing I knew, a character I thought was going to harass my main character, apologized instead and sent the wip in a different direction. Now I’m moving full speed ahead toward my 3rd act.

  4. Linda Gray says:

    Fantastic suggestions, thank you! I need all the help I can get. 🙂

  5. Donna Hole says:

    Writing ahead seems to work well for me; but so does taking a break and doing something non-writing related.

    I’m not participating in NaNo, but these tips are good for any time I’m stuck on a project 🙂 I send best wishes to all NaNoites . .

    Thanks for the links to Sarah and Lydia.


  6. J E Fritz says:

    These are good tips whether or not you’re doing NaNo. I’ll have to remember them the next time I get stuck.

  7. Krispy says:

    Love these tips! I think I’m about to try the skipping scenes one. I’m getting bored and impatient. Haha. Writing sprints definitely help too!

  8. akossket says:

    “Don’t give up.”
    I’m hanging onto that. Maybe there is still hope for me to be close to finishing before Thanksgiving.

  9. Arlee Bird says:

    Great tips. Sadly I’m falling very short on NaNo but happily I’m getting a lot of other things done. Hopefully I’ll get back to the novel.

    One of the best NaNo tips out there on
    Tossing It Out

  10. Good post. Just what I needed as I unstick myself in a bogged down chapter. I love the peanut idea. Reminds me of last year when I had a character in my zombie NaNo novel die, not from zombies, but from a bee sting.

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