NaNoWriMo - What's That All About? I Oxford Open Learning

NaNoWriMo – What’s That All About?

Catchy phrases, acronyms, strange spellings – we love them, right? They make us think. They help us to remember important pieces of information. What about NaNoWriMo? Have you heard of this? If so, great, you’re an expert; but if not, this blog will tell you what you need to know!

National Novel Writing Month

NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month – which to tie in with the alliterative first two words is… you guessed it… November! Unbelievably (well, to me, anyway), it all started over 20 years ago, back in the last century – many of you may not have even been born then! You start on November 1st and for 30 days, you work on a new novel – and by November 30th, hey presto, you have a 50,000-word novel. You may not be famous straightaway, but what an accomplishment – certainly something you can be proud of.

So, you might be thinking, well, I can sit down at any time, in any month, and write. Right? Yes, of course you can, but will you? If you are like me, it is easy to procrastinate, to play with your cat or toast a piece of bread instead. NaNoWriMo is brilliant in that it tracks what you write, like the step-counter on your wrist, and with the power of social media, others can encourage you, and support you. What have you got to lose? Nothing… other than deciding on plot, characters, setting, maybe a little sleep…

In 2021, nearly half a million people participated in the programme – and there was also a version of the writing challenge at a camp (again, you guessed it: Camp NaNoWriMo). Just brilliant – like-minded writers getting together, camping out and putting pen to paper, maybe with a few toasted marshmallows thrown in for good measure. Fun fact: Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl, which you may well have heard of, started off its life as a NaNoWriMo idea. Amazing!

A Good Kickstarter

If you want to get involved, and I hope you do, check out and see where this exciting journey can take you. If you have always wanted to write a book but have lacked the discipline and motivation, this could be just the thing you have been looking for.

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