#21: It's the Pumpkin Spice Latte For Me

Feat. resources for novelists + hella writing prompts

Hey you!

We’re mere weeks away from diving into my favorite season: fall. Even though I’m a summer baby, fall is a certified *vibe* and provides so many more opportunities for fun: haunted houses, state fairs, pumpkin picking, turning a gigantic and soft sweater into your temporary residence, etc.

No matter what season you have heart eyes for, I hope you’re able to enjoy the upcoming season in any way you can.

If you’re interested in gaining access to a backlog of my Medium articles, poems, and short stories, 165 pieces and counting, consider becoming a Medium member by using my referral link.

I get a part of your membership fee every month, so it’s a great way to support Oh, Write and my other creative endeavors.

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So sit back, relax, and enjoy issue…uh…what’s 9 + 10?

Writer’s Log #9:

In my September writing goals blog post, I revealed that I wanted to choose an idea for NaNoWriMo during September. NaNoWriMo, otherwise known as National Novel Writing Month, challenges writers to pen 50,000 words of a brand new novel during November.

To minimize the stress of picking an idea to pursue, I gave myself an entire month to choose. Once October 1st hits, I can hit the ground running with novel planning. Last Saturday, I spent a few hours rattling my brain for ideas, just to see what would spit out.

A shortlist of wild ideas from my brainstorm: 

anthology series set in small-town
i just got a new apartment
it’s a front for drugs though
maybe there’s a cult?
maybe something about dreams; the key is in dreams
stranded on an island? that’s interesting
a retreat in the woods that ends in murder

Once my idea bank went dry, I started to create loglines of possible books along with fake titles. I used the logline template from one of my favorite books on writing, Jessica Brody’s Save the Cat! Writes a Novel

“On the verge of a stasis = death moment, a flawed hero Breaks Into 2; but when the Midpoint happens, they must learn the Theme Stated before the All Is Lost.” 

The logline template uses terms from the Save the Cat beat sheet, like “breaks into 2” and “theme stated”. Writer Savannah Gilbo explains the beat sheet in her blog post “How to Outline Your Novel with Save the Cat!”. I’d highly recommend checking it out if you aren’t familiar with the Save the Cat beat sheet. 

Her blog post helped me tremendously through last year’s NaNoWriMo, especially her point of dividing the target novel-length word count into scenes and acts. That point forever changed the way I outline novels.

An example of a fake logline and title: 

Possible title: Lucky You

Logline: On the verge of succumbing to depression, a socially anxious, out-of-work felon wins a multi-million dollar lottery, skips town, and decides to live out her childhood dream: living a fabulous life in a luxurious Miami hotel. But, when a dark figure from her criminal past reemerges while she embraces her new lifestyle, she must confront her inner demons before she puts herself, and the people she loves, in grave danger. 

Once I had a list of a few titles and loglines, my brain was tired. And, yet, I had an urge to keep developing my stories. Guess that comes with being a naturally gifted *throws glitter* storyteller *throws glitter again*. 

But seriously, I had this feeling that maybe, just maybe, one of my ideas would become “the one” I’d pursue in November.

Because of that, I began one of my favorite low-stress story development methods: creating a virtual moodboard on Pinterest.

I usually make my story moodboards secret Pinterest boards but I’ll keep Lucky You’s board public just in case you want to check it out as I fill it out. Also, be sure to follow a real one on Pinterest.

I’m not putting any pressure on Lucky You being “the one”. I’m just focusing on the fun of creating a story. If I end up choosing Lucky You as my NaNo story, great! But, if I don’t, great!

Are any of y’all planning on doing NaNoWriMo? Let me know with a comment down below! We could totally do some super fun story planning stuff together, like the Powerpuff Girls but if the Powerpuff Girls were novelists.

3 Things I Consumed

  1. TikTok star Addison Rae’s Netflix movie He’s All That along with YouTuber Nick DiRamio’s review of it [nick is, by far, one of my favorite people on YouTube and he is freakin hilarious; everyone should watch him tbh]

  2. Sweet Life: Los Angeles on HBO Max (Episode 1 and Episode 2 are on YouTube!!) (very Baldwin Hills-ish, which I like. and it’s equal parts ratchet and inspirational which is pretty much my personal brand)

  3. This tweet that drove me into an existential crisis lmfao:

1 Thing I Created

I’ve been doing a lot of consuming lately and less creating. But, I legit just made this whole newsletter so…*high fives myself*.

Writing Prompts

  1. Do some research about Greece, here’s a random place to start, and set a 1000-word piece of flash fiction in this gorgeous city

  2. This prompt comes from this writing prompt generator from Scholastic: “Write a two sentence message to a yellow clown who plays in a dark forest.” (sounds like It vibes to me)

  3. Why do I kinda love this extremely simple writing prompt from Reddit?

  4. A list of very cheesy but also very cute romance writing prompts from Tumblr (the superior social network tbh)

Conclusion

Thank you so much for reading Oh, Write!
For more Oh, Write content, check out the Medium publication.

Have any questions, comments, or concerns? Hit ya girl up!

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Love, 

Nia