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Danielle Dresser | Writing Advice from My Five-Year-Old (or How to Actually Deal with the #RWAShitShow)
Author Guest / January 13, 2020

Back in November, I explained the concept of NaNoWriMo to my five-year-old daughter, who stared blankly at me for a moment and then declared, “I can do that!” and started drawing pictures on paper, begging me to staple them together, and then dictating the words to me. Readers, she has written no less than 50 short books about two characters named Stick and Pinecone (TM to come) in a little over two months. The best part is, however, after all of her dictation, as well as her growing comfort with reading and writing sentences on her own, she now writes her own books start to finish, and we are both so proud. Now, while I barely wrote 20,000 words during the month of November – and not very much since then – I can’t help but be inspired by my daughter’s tenacity, drive, and creativity. But cut to the recent events surrounding RWA, it’s questionable current and former leadership, the unfair takedown of Courtney Milan, and the countless writers who have come forward with their own unjust and malicious treatment by the organization, it’s HARD out here for aspiring authors to find the motivation to continue. And for marginalized writers…

Daily Dose | Five Ways Readers Benefit from NaNoWriMo
Daily Dose / October 29, 2009

NaNoWriMo is right around the corner. For those of you who don’t know what that is, NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writer’s Month. It’s a fun, by the seat of your pants writing challenge that began in 1999 with just 21 participants. Now a decade later, NaNoWriMo averages over a 100,000 participants in a no-hold barred, write like mad for 30 days adventure to create a book from scratch. That’s right, NaNoWriMo is all about the writing, but it’s also about the connections and relationships you make with other writers going through the same things you are. I’ve participated officially in NaNoWriMo once, but unofficially, I’ve been following it since 2001 or thereabouts. November is the chosen month for NaNoWriMo; writing begins on the 1st and runs through the 30th with writers giving away prizes to other writers and more as a way to encourage success. For some writers, it’s also about competing with friends (friendly competition only, mind you) in order to drive word counts up. If you can successfully commit 30 days to NaNoWriMo, you can walk away with the bones of your novel or at least a solid first draft. But How Do Readers Benefit? Learn what the…