- Barbara White Daille shared her technique for three-line outlining. "I love NaNo, but one of the drawbacks I find in writing fast and furiously is the inability to hold all the details of a manuscript in my head. To combat that, I’ve come up with a solution that keeps important information near at hand."
- I talked about using lessons from inquiry-based learning to plot your novel. You choose the main issue your story will resolve (your problem statement), gather details related to the issue (motivation, characters, time period, and setting), discuss the findings (create an outline), and reflect on what was learned (write your first draft).
- Carol A. Strickland talked about using gingerbread to plot your novel. "Gingerbread cookie cutters, that is. If you’re just sitting down to that new book idea that’s floating hazily out in the ether, remember the old rule: Characters are more important than plot."
- Devin Harnois shared the joys of writing out of order. "It started when I was stressed out and distracted during NaNoWriMo and didn’t want to give up my winning streak (I’m currently 8 for 8). So I decided I was going to write whatever scene I came up with next, whether that was in order or not."
- Ruth Kaufman discussed anti-plotting. "You’ve probably read that "what if" (WI) is a great generating tool. Such as, what if a bride ran away from her wedding? If you WI and question each idea, you can expand and expand."
- Roxy Mews talked about NaNo Prep for pantsers. "NaNoWriMo taught me a new term. “Pantser”. A “Pantser” is someone who does no or very little preparation before they start. They turn on their computer and write."
- Erica Ridley shared her top 3 tips for getting words on the page: 1. Writing caves are overrated. 2. There is no writer's block. 3. Your baby is ugly (as it should be).
- Debra St. John suggested that we find inspiration by just adding water. This is one of my favorite tips! Do you get story ideas in the shower? Schedule your shower as part of your writing routine.
- T. J. Kline shared 6 tips to set yourself up for November success. "Go over your word count every day you write. Because there will be days when emergencies happen and you don’t write, plan ahead to get at least 2000 words a day. It will all balance in the end this way."
- Katharine Tree talked about moodling and other tips. "Moodling is, in essence, daydreaming. ... If you moodle with the general aim of thinking about your book—not setting yourself to solve problems, only congratulating yourself over what you’ve written, mulling over what you might write later, and wondering what problems need working out—your keyboard time will be far more fruitful because when you sit down, you’ll already know what you’re going to write."
- Maggie Wells discussed how a little extra padding goes a long way. "The best advice I can give for successfully meeting your goal is to hit it hard at the start. Don’t stop when you reach that day’s goal. If the words are flowing, go with it. Bank them."
- Elizabeth Andrews talked about picking the right music to set the writing mood. "Whether it's for NANO or just your normal everyday writing session, it never hurts to set the proper mood so you can write your fingers off."
- Anna Durand shared 5 tips for writing faster. "How did I train myself to write faster? Everyone needs to develop an individual method that works for them, but I'm going to share my method."
- Paula Millhouse shared 3 tips for NaNoWriMo success. (I'm a fan of setting a timer, too.) "Try to write first, before interacting on social media. I’ve found it’s helpful to me to write at the same time every day."
- Kristina Knight had tips on creating a project playlist. "I'll let you in on a little secret: I can't write without music. Seriously. My brain stops sending messages to my fingers and I freeze. Sounds crazy, doesn't it? A writer should be able to write from anywhere...and I can, as long as there is music, too."
- Robin D. Owens shared motivational techniques for improving your focus. "First, for self doubt, write down everything you worry about for this particular story – handwritten – for about 5-10 minutes. Then scratch out those words, rip up the pages, shred or toss them. Your worries are gone."
- Ilana C. Meyer taught us how to write dialogue that sings. "If characters are the heart of a story, dialogue is the lifeblood that serves the heart: we learn most of what we know about a character from their utterances, as well as from how they speak."
- Matt Banach talked about finding inspiration in lessons learned from reverse design. "I find I work best when I am forced to fit my world into a certain mold ... the mold I select is a picture in a process we refer to as "reverse design". The tactic has its roots in some fairly business-y concepts of low-cost online publishing - in order to publish our little product on a tight timetable with minimal production costs and no delays, instead of writing something and then tasking an artist to draw cover art and interior art to our specifications, I take art that is already in hand and give myself the mandate: 'Ok, self. This is the cover art. Write this world.' And I do."
- E. P. Issacs discussed the motivational power of music. "When I feel the story locking up inside of me, I’ve found music can help to get the keys moving the way I want them to again."
- A. Catherine Noon talked about using music to create characters. "Creating characters that seem like real people is a challenge. One way to keep things straight is to figure out what your character would listen to on the radio."
- Selene Grace Silver shared her method for using Myers-Briggs to develop unique characters. "So how do writers create characters with unique personalities? One way is to study what psychologists know. I use personality theory to build different characters and their relationships within a single work of fiction. It addresses both a character’s personality as it’s shaped by the outside world and by biology."
- Tracey Clark talked about story building. "Always listen to the voices. Allow your imagination to run free. Make your world and your characters as real to your readers as they are to you."
- Lisa Nicholas taught us how to write through the Valley Of Despair. "Hating your book is a step in the process to finishing your book. ... When you hit that point in writing your book in November—and you will, I promise—keep going. Even when you hate every word. Go ahead and hate every word, but write them. It’s a first draft, you can fix it later."
- Yolanda Sfetsos asked "Are you ready for this?" and shared her NaNoPrep plan. "I always do the switcheroo. ;)"
- Emma Gates talked about banishing your inner editor. "Banishing the inner editor gives me mania to work with, a good chunk of sojourn whose riches my character can plunder until their satisfying conclusions become visible, as the forest becomes trees and the paths between are lit by aha moments."
- I talked about life as a Cubs fan and an author. This is your year! You can't win if you don't play.
- Margo Bond Collins shared tips for making NaNoWriMo work for you. "There are three things, in particular, that I love about NaNoWriMo, so today I’m going to talk about how to use these three elements: the community, the deadline, and the writing philosophy."