National Novel Writing Month, AKA NaNoWriMo

Ever considered writing a novel? November is National Novel Writing Month and may be just what you need to kick-start that ambition. The goal: to write at least 50,000 words in 30 days. Feeling a bit overwhelmed already? Don’t stress out — we have plenty of books and other resources that can help you along the way. 

Books to Check Out

No Plot? No Problem!: A Low-Stress, High-Velocity Guide to Writing a Novel in 30 Days by Chris Baty, the founder of NaNoWriMo (808.3 BAT)
Write Great Fiction series:
  • Plot & Structure: Techniques and Exercises for Crafting a Plot that Grips Readers from Start to Finish (808.3 BEL)
  • Description & Setting: Techniques and Exercises for Crafting a Believable World of People, Places and Events (808.3 ROZ)
  • Characters, Emotions & Viewpoint: Techniques and Exercises for Crafting Dynamic Characters and Effective Viewpoints (808.3 KRE)
  • Dialogue: Techniques and Exercises for Crafting Effective Dialogue (808.3 KEM)
  • Revision & Self-Editing: Techniques for Transforming Your First Draft into a Finished Novel (808.3 BEL)
From Where You Dream: The Process of Writing Fiction by Robert Olen Butler (808.3 BUT)
Turning Life Into Fiction: Finding Character, Plot, Setting and Other Elements of Novel and Short Story Writing in the Everyday World by Robin Hemley (808.3 HEM)
Writing Romances: A Handbook by the Romance Writers of America (808.385 WRI)
See Jane Write: A Girl’s Guide to Writing Chick Lit by Sarah Mlynowski (808.385 MLY)
The Guide to Writing: Fantasy and Science Fiction by Philip Athans (808.38762 ATH)
Writing & Selling the YA Novel by K.L. Going (808.06 GOI)
Writing Mysteries:  A Handbook by the Mystery Writers of America (808.3872 WRI)

Reference Books

Our Reference section is a treasure trove for writing resources, especially if you’re writing historical fiction. Here are but a few of the titles we offer:

The Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life in the 1800s (Ref 973. 8 MCU)
The Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life From Prohibition Through World War II (Ref 973.91 MCC)
Daily Life of the Ancient Greeks (Ref 938 GAR)*
The Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life in the Middle Ages (Ref 909.07 KEN)
The Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life in Colonial America (973.2 TAY)
Are you stuck on what to name your characters? The Marion Public Library has an extensive collection of name books for both personal and surnames in the 929.4-929.44 section in both the Reference and Non-Fiction collections.
*There are many titles in the “Daily Life in History” series available for a variety of historical periods in both the Reference and circulating Non-Fiction collections. Do a Title Browse search for “daily life” to see all the books available.

Other Helpful Resources

The Marion Public Library is hosting meet-ups for local writers ages 16 and older on Wednesdays throughout November. Join us on October 30th from  6:30-7:30 for our kick-off party and then on November 7, 14, and 21 at the same time for inspiration, motivation, and commiseration in your quest to hit 50,000 words.

Regional  NaNoWriMo Writing Support Group on Facebook

The NaNoWriMo website has all sorts of tools to help keep you on track and motivated to write.

Are you  17 or younger? Join NaNoWriMo’s Young Writers Program for advice designed specifically for kids and teens.

Interested in writing a young adult novel? The lovely and hilarious ladies at the YA Highway blog are offering The Carpool Lane, a daily inspirational email to help make November the most productive month of writing for you.

Compiled by Jennifer in Reference
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