If you are familiar, than you know November is National Novel Writing Month, otherwise referred to as NaNoWriMo. If you are participating then you are already in the thick of it – one week in and hopefully a new novel started.
This is the month when writers lock themselves away (I do mean more than usual), post giant Do Not Disturb signs on their door, and go all angry-lawyer on anyone who dares to bother them. Across the globe, there are organized dates, times, and locations where writer’s gather in special ‘write-in’ groups. There is power in numbers when it comes to pounding out words on the keyboard. No, seriously, there is. It’s called a support system and group moral. We aren’t trying to make our stories look pretty at this stage. Heck no! We’re only trying to spit out the bones as much as possible, filling it in with the basic of flesh. The goal: 50,000 words. That my friend is a lot of words.
How do writers handle the everyday needs with that kind of weight upon them? They don’t! Okay, some don’t. The house gets messy. We see our friends and family less or not at all. And all those fun activities, cut back or cut out. Unless you’re a mad writer who is able to knock out all 50,000 words in the first half of the month. I know some of you can. More power to ya!
For the rest of us, we streamline our lives a bit more than usual during the month of November. Today we’ll look at the nourishment side to crazy write life.
Eating for NaNoWriMo
You’ll probably be shaking your head at me and secretly saying ‘I know all this,” but if experience has taught me anything, it is that knowing a thing doesn’t always lead to executing that thing. From time to time it helps seeing a plan in writing. So…here we go!
Plan everything in advance. This is insanity write time. There’s no time for dawdling around the kitchen foraging for food. Figure it out early and have it ready. As a mom of younger kids, I’m used to getting their school lunches ready the night before. Now, I’ve added some of my food prep to the already established regiment.
Breakfast and lunch: plan your meals the night before. If it’s something you can make ahead of time and have ready to go, do so. If not, have all the ingredients pulled together to save on time later. Make your meals simple, nothing extravagant and/or time-consuming. You’ll have time to indulge in December. For me, I’m going the protein shake route. It’s fast and easy and it fills my nutritional needs.
*Side note: If you decide to go with protein shakes or already are, might I suggest a personal sized blender. It’s super easy and fast to use and the cleanup is a snap!
Snacks: Keep your brain fed on healthy snacks throughout the day to help facilitate the flow of ideas. I recommend raw vegetables and nuts, but it’s your menu so you get to decide. Whatever you chose, separate your portions the night before and set them aside ready to go. Tupperware, Ziploc bags, whatever method you want to use for storage, it’s all good. There is no right or wrong. Just make sure you have snacks for mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Not only will this help keep you alert but by eating smaller amounts more often throughout the day you’ll get your metabolism to work more efficiently.
Dinner: You’ve worked hard all day. You got your work count in and moved your story along. It’s time to reward yourself with a nice sit-down meal. Enjoy good food and delightful conversation with your family. Because we don’t want to over-indulge and end up with a food hangover, we keep our dinners reasonable. Again, it’s up to you. Remember, how you eat effects your performance. In our home, it’s grilled meats and salads. Taco night is always a favorite. We stay away from the heavy foods, i.e. pastas, chili, rice…
Sweets: We all love a taste of a smooth chocolate or soft cookie every now and again, but these eats will load you up with a temporary sugar high and then have your energy crashing. The recommendation – don’t do it. But, if you really must have that something sweet to get you through the day, try a trail mix with chocolate chips. You’ll get the healthy goodness along with the sweet. It may be exactly what you need to get you through the days.
Last but not least. Stay hydrated. Most writers will start their day (and continue their day) with some form of caffeine. Coffee, tea, it’s all good. Make sure you’re cleansing your body with plenty of water.
Now get out there and write! Best of luck to you and your projects!
Do you participate in NaNoWriMo? Do you have any meal routines that have worked well for you that you’d like to share?
I’m a mother, a young adult author, and sometimes DIY home decorator. Watch the blog to follow my messy life. Living every day in reality and making time to play on the other side, bringing bits of whimsy into the norm. Check out my books at your favorite on-line retailer.