The NaNoWriMo survival kit is a collection of objects that will help you make it through NaNoWriMo in one piece.
There are many things you can put in your survival kit. Here are a few ideas:
You need to stay fueled while you’re writing, and it can be pretty easy to forget to eat. Making a huge meal can be a hassle, so keep some healthy snacks with you while you write.
Nuts are a good source of protein, and fruits and vegetables are fun to eat. My favorite snack foods are bananas, yogurt, and peanut butter.
I’ve heard too many horror stories about writers neglecting their health during NaNoWriMo, going days just surviving off of candies. Trust me, it’s important to take care of yourself when you’re writing. Staying healthy will give you more energy and motivation.
One of my favorite parts of my survival kit is the tea. While there’s a lot of tea in the kitchen, I like to keep a few sachets in my kit for symbolic purposes.
Drinking tea also has a lot of benefits.
Caffeinated teas, such as green tea, black tea, or white tea, is a great way to stay energized while writing, especially if coffee makes you too jittery to write.
Herbal teas, such as peppermint, honey and lemon, or apple cinnamon, are my favorite to drink when it’s too late for caffeine. Plus they’re relaxing and help me manage my stress during NaNoWriMo.
November is when all the Halloween candy goes on sale in the stores, so using candies and chocolates as rewards for writing are a great motivator.
Just don’t go overboard, and remember to keep some healthy snacks in your survival kit.
A writing totem is an object that represents the spirit of your novel. It can help embody the spirit of writing and creativity.
My writing totem is a little plush chickadee.
I find a colorful collection of pens to be quite satisfying to have, so I like to have an assortment ready for when I’m planning out my novels.
If you enjoy using pens and markers then I would recommend Tombow Brush Markers. They’re a bit pricey, but the quality is great and they feel wonderful in the hand and on the paper. I especially love the look of the lighter colors.
If you’re more of a pencil person than a pen person, then grab some pencils for your survival kit!
You can get standard ones, ones with cute designs, mechanical pencils, etc. Maybe even get some cute erasers to go with them.
Even if you’re going to be using a word processing program to write your novel, I would still recommend keeping a notebook with you.
With a notebook you can write down ideas that come up throughout the day (or night), or write down inspiring messages and goals.
I can’t write fiction well when listening to music. I’m not sure why, since I can write blog posts fine while listening to music.
If you’re one of those people who can listen to music while you write your novel, then I suggest creating a soundtrack to put in your NaNoWriMo survival kit.
You can have music for different kinds of scenes, like calm music for transitional scenes, fast paced music for action scenes, symphonic music for emotional scenes, etc.
Word Processing Program
I prefer typing out my stories, so I make sure I have my word processing program good to go before November starts.
I use FocusWriter, which is a free and opensource program. What I like about it is that you can set themes for the program, which creates different visual aesthetics. It’s a great way to immerse yourself in the world of writing.
Keeping some writing prompts handy is a great way to stave off writer’s block.
You don’t have to use them word for word, and they don’t have to relate to the genre you’re writing. As long as you find them inspirational, keep them in your mind (and in your survival kit).
If you’re more of a coffee person than a tea person, then keeping some coffee pods in your survival kit is a great way to keep your energy levels high while writing!
I have a few reference books for my writing, two of them are about general story building stuff, the other is about personality traits. I use them a lot when planning out novels.
Having some books to reference during NaNoWriMo can save you a headache, so look through your book collection, or check out your local library.
I adore bullet journals!
Instead of having horizontal lines or grid lines, they have dots in a grid pattern, which allows you to create your own layout throughout the journal.
If you don’t like the layouts of planners, or want a hybrid of a planner and a notebook, I would suggest using a bullet journal. Their versatility makes them great for just about anyone, and you can get different sizes and colors.
I made my own bullet journal a few months ago and I love it, and use it almost everyday.
NaNoWriMo can get pretty stressful, so having a way to relieve that stress will be a benefit to you.
Things like stress balls (squishy balls and you can squeeze to relieve stress) are sold for very cheap prices. You can also DIY stress relievers, like making slime or kinesthetic sand.
I use a little bean bag turtle on my desk to relieve stress.
There’s no denying that NaNoWriMo can be difficult, but having a well stocked survival kit can help you get through NaNoWriMo with a little more ease.
If you enjoyed this post, please leave a like or share it with someone else who would enjoy it. I blog about writing every Wednesday, so check back next week for some new content.