Suzanne Guldimann is the editor of the Topanga New Times, and also TNT’s resident naturalist. She was recently asked to give a talk on being…
November is National Novel Writing Month. NaNoWriMo began in 1999 as a daunting but straightforward challenge: to write 50,000 words of a novel in thirty days. Now, each year on November 1, hundreds of thousands of people around the world begin to write, determined to end the month with 50,000 words of a brand new novel. They enter the month as elementary school teachers, mechanics, or stay-at-home parents. They leave novelists.
NaNoWriMo officially became a nonprofit organization in 2006, and their programs support writing fluency and education. Their website hosts more than a million writers, serving as a social network with author profiles, personal project libraries, and writing buddies. NaNoWriMo tracks words for writers like Fitbit tracks steps, and hosts real-world writing events in cities from Mexico City, to Seoul, to Milwaukee with the help of 900+ volunteers in thousands of partnering libraries and community centers.
NaNoWriMo is internet-famous, and community-powered. It has hosted authors drafting novels like Water for Elephants, WOOL, and Fangirl. It’s a teaching tool and curriculum taught in 5,920 classrooms, and NaNoWriMo’s programs run year-round.
In 2020, 552,335 writers participated in NaNoWriMo programs, including 97,439 students and educators in the Young Writers Program. Hundreds of NaNoWriMo novels have been traditionally published. This year, it could be your novel. Learn more at www.nanowrimo.org
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