Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

It's NaNoWriMo, say whaaaaaaaaa? For the acronym-challenged, it's National Novel Writing Month, which means that anyone who decides to partake has 30 days to crank out their literary masterpiece. Think you're up for the challenge? Here are eight tools to help.

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

Heavy Duty Door Lock

You know how you're always talking about how you're gonna lock yourself in your room until you finish that novel? Take that sentiment one step further and have someone lock you in your room. Literally. This heavy-duty cargo lock will ensure you don't escape your cave (unless you have a window and a ground-level location).$160

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

Nook Simple Touch

Writers read. Whether you're mining for inspiration, looking for themes, or studying the styles of those you admire, you should read as much as you write. An e-Reader saves you the trouble of acquiring an insufferable amount of books around your house, or enduring regret over giving away that one book you thought you'd never read again. Barnes and Noble's Nook Simple Touch is a good option.$140

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

Livescribe SmartPen

Livescribe's pen is a weird hybrid beast that will digitize your handwritten notes, record audio, and make simple calculations. There's even an app store. If you're interviewing people for research, or immersing yourself in a location, this pen can make your observations that much more useful in your final manuscript. $100

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

iA Writer for iPad

A distraction-free writing environment is the holy grail for anyone who's knee deep in a novel. With the proper apps, a tablet such as the iPad can get you one step closer to that goal thanks to the modal software design of iOS and the lack of a mouse. iA Writer is an especially simple app which gives you a blank screen and little else to activate your ADHD. Grab a cup of coffee, turn off your notifications and go to work. $1

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

Ginko Biloba Pills

New age hippies say that Ginko Biloba can enhance concentration. Though this has yet to be proven in any empirical way, the average novel has 90,000 words. You're going to need all the help you can get, even if you're just suffering from the placebo effect. $10

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

Nuance Dragon Dictation

Nuance—the same people responsible for the beloved Siri—have an app called Dragon Dictation. When your brain is mush and you just want to get a few ideas into actual words, you can fire up this program and shout gibberish at it to your heart's content. When you're in a more coherent state of mind, you can revisit your notes and form them into something useful. $200

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

Journal Bandolier

I'm sure you already have a Molskine notebook for all those random, serendipitous ideas which come to your head when you're out and about. But where do you keep your pen? It'd be a shame to let a good idea disappear into the ether because you couldn't find your pen. Keep this bandolier strapped around your notebook, which has a home for your writing utensil of choice. $17

Eight Tools to Help You Pen the Next Great American Novel

Griffin Pen/Stylus/Laser

And maybe you should consider Griffin's combination pen/stylus/laser, if only so that you can use the red beam of doom to burn your retinas out after days of staring at a blank page and abandoning all hope. $50

Image via Shutterstock/Vesna Cvorovic