National Novel Writing Month – or Nanowrimo to the initiated – is the annual writing challenge where participants pledge to write 50,000 words of a novel in 30 days.
“I’ve participated in Nanowrimo four times and won twice, but more important is what it’s taught me about myself as a writer,” says Kaite Welsh. “Early on in my Nano career, the timed writing sprints that, thanks to my deeply competitive nature, forced me to write when it was the last thing in the world I wanted to do. Knowing that if I persevere, I can write the bulk of a novel in a month means that all my previous excuses are null and void.”
After I recovered from the shock of being asked to do something so cool, I was immediately overcome by nerves.
“Book readings are relatively standard,” says Emily Ansara Baines, “the writer reads to a crowd, then they sign their books. I have many signed copies of novels, mostly with a scribbled phrase—’Thanks for reading!’ or ‘Enjoy!’ and the author’s name. I always said that if I did a signing, I’d write more than some standard phrase. Of course, this necessitated actually having people who wanted to read my books.”
Do you require Bronte to reboot your broken heart, Austen to curb your arrogance, or Hemingway for your headache?
“Though bibliotherapy isn’t new (its origins can be traced back to the ancient Greeks),” writes Nicole Sprinkle, “it’s recently getting a lot of press. Bibliotherapy is using the written word as a type of therapy to help patients with psychological disorders such as depression.
I did a little recon and asked friends and family what books they’ve looked to for tough times in their life, be it a breakup, getting out of a rut or looking to make a life change.”
I can’t tell you what a relief it was to feel free of limiting expectations, to breathe.
“I had no idea then just how intimate our relationship would become,” admits author Becky Aikman.
“We covered it all: how painful and lonely were our darkest moments? What was it like to kiss a man for the first time who was not a husband? What about sex? I recorded everything to make sure the book was accurate, and it was easy to forget that the tape recorder was running …. [It] turns out they all felt as strongly as I did that we might add to people’s understanding if we held nothing back. So we didn’t.”
What a first line! Prayers for the Stolen is a hauntingly beautiful story of love and survival.
Ladydi Garcia Martinez was born into a world where being a girl is a dangerous thing. In their village in the remote tropical mountains of Guerrero, Mexico, she and her friends are dressed as boys and “made ugly” by their mothers, to protect them from the roving drug traffickers and criminal groups that plague the region.
Dive into our sneak peek of this stunning exploration of the hidden consequences of an unjust war and be among the first to read Prayers for the Stolen. It’s an unforgettable story of friendship, family, and determination.
When I discovered her letters, I just couldn’t believe I’d never heard of her!
“The inspiration for I Shall Be Near to You was the Civil War letters that Rosetta Wakeman wrote home to her family while she was serving as a private in the Union Army,” shares author Erin Lindsay McCabe.
“Then when I learned that hundreds of women fought in the Civil War, I was even more shocked.”
Dive into the read in our sneak peek and be among the first to read I Shall Be Near to You!