The Great Debate: Are you a planner or a pantser?
There are two types of writers in the NaNoWriMo universe. There are pantsers, and there are planners. Pantsers fly by the seat of their pants. (Hence the name.) They have some vague idea or a main character or even just an opening line, and when November 1 rolls around, they jump on board the story train and see where it takes them.
Planners know what their novel is going to be about before November 1 rolls around. They know their characters, their setting, their story. There are different degrees of planners, mind you. Some people write more in their outline than they do in the novel itself, with pages and pages of character sketches and world building and elaborate plot spiderwebs. Others will just do a quick overview and have a general idea of where the story goes. But when you get right down to it, you’re either a planner or a pantser.