National Novel Writing Month

If writing a novel doesn’t sounds hard enough to you, try writing it in a month. That is the challenge that over 300,000 participants will go up against this November. Last year nearly 35,000 novels were completed.

National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo to those who compete, is an annual world-wide competition that challenges writers of all ages and skill to start and finish a novel in thirty days. The tagline, fifty thousand words, thirty days says it all. It is as simple yet challenging as that. You have the entire month of November to come up with an idea, and write fifty thousand words.

The daily challenge comes down to 1,667 words. If you participate in the competition, that number will come to haunt you. While it might not seem like a lot, it can be difficult to meet that goal every day for thirty days straight.

There are smaller achievements called badges that writers can collect over the course of the month. These badges include Caffeine Abuse, Procrastination, and Something in My Eye.

NaNoWriMo establishes a sense of community for writers all over the world. Competitors can use the forum function to talk, encourage, or challenge others to writing games. You can becomes buddies with other writers from all over the globe, something that can be difficult outside of NaNoWriMo.

NaNoWriMo uses twitter to house hourly writing sprints. Writing sprints set a time limit and whoever writes the most wins! They also use twitter to give writers encouragement and writing prompts if they get stuck.

NaNoWriMo is free, and if completed you get rewards such as free or discounted trials of many popular writing programs. Funding is collected through voluntary donations and merchandise that writers can purchase. Last year’s income reached just over a million dollars. This funding helps many writers grow in skill and confidence and helps even more discover the magic of creating.

NaNoWriMo also offers a youth program where the challenge is thirty thousand words in the same time frame. There is also Camp NaNoWrimo twice a year where writers can set their own goals and participate in summer themed activities.

Writer’s Club co-chairman, Oliver Gibson, says “It is a really cool event where even if you don’t end up finishing a novel it is good practice for committing to writing something every day and setting yourself a goal. I just think it is really cool that all over the world, you can hold each other accountable for writing every day for a month.”

Writing is important in today’s society, whether as an outlet, hobby, or career. It can seem daunting when starting out, but NaNoWriMo helps spark creativity and community.

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