Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Write a Novel in Thirty Days - Guest Post

Write a Novel in Thirty Days
by Gina Clifford

Gina is the author of the eclectic home learning blog Spotty Banana, where she shares information on all sorts of subjects. Gina is a child-led, project-based learning advocate who enjoys exploring fun math, science, and technology-themed activities with her son, who is a fanatic like her. 

Writing a novel sounds like fun but also overwhelming.  Thanks to NaNoWriMo’s National Novel Writing Month online event, anyone can write a novel in thirty days.  In fact, the challenge requires it. Even kids!

Writers sign-up for the challenge through the NaNoWriMo’s website any time during the year but must write and submit the novel between November 1 and November 30.

Don't worry if you or your young learners have never written a novel.  NaNoWriMo’s resources section contains free, detailed, and downloadable workbooks to walk writers through the entire novel writing process.  The "100% Awesome NON-LAME workbooks" are highly recommended because they help writers learn about the elements of a novel and provide plenty of explanation.  When finished, the writer’s workbook contains an impressive outline for the novel.  The workbooks are available for elementary, middle, and high school levels but all explain the main elements of a novel. NaNoWriMo also features tips from published authors, links to other writing challenges, and a blog-style section for event-related news.

There is no cost to enter the challenge and no fancy prizes to win. Adults who sign up for the challenge have thirty days to write 50,000 words. Young writers under the age of seventeen are encouraged to choose their own challenging word count goal. Although winning is based solely on reaching your word count goal, the glory of completing the challenge is the real reward. The event is completely free, fun, and challenging.  NaNoWriMo doesn't promise that you'll end up with a masterpiece after just thirty days, but you'll definitely learn to write a novel! 

Sign-up for the challenge now, download and complete the appropriate workbook, and prepare to write your novel in November. Plan the following twelve months to edit your novel and maybe even get it published.

Even if your children don't sign up for the challenge, the workbook makes an excellent resource to help their writing. Check out the resources page and educators page for more helpful ideas.
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