So a few weeks ago, I sent an email to the NaNoWriMo mailing list that contained the following bit:
- - -
YOUR SUMMER WRITING ASSIGNMENT: A NANOWRIMO STORY
Every year, we hear hundreds of touching, hilarious stories from participants about the unexpected impacts that NaNoWriMo has had on their lives. Last week, I talked to Jenn, a NaNoWriMo 2002 winner. Jenn has an agent interested in her novel (yay!), but she's fallen into the abyss of perfectionism and prolonged rewrites, with no end in sight (booo).
Last month, Jenn's mother took matters into her own hands by offering to help Jenn with the down payment on her first home. Jenn and her husband have been wanting to buy a house for years, so this was a really big deal. The offer, however, came with a catch. Jenn's mom isn't mailing the check until Jenn finishes her novel.
That's NaNoWriMo in a nutshell: Helping families withhold generous gifts from one another since 1999. Whenever I hear a story like Jenn's, I always wish that we had some easy way to share it with the community at large. Which is why I was so excited when NaNoWriMo volunteer Drew Patty made a suggestion: Why not invite participants to send in stories of the surprising effects NaNoWriMo has had on their lives, and then run those tales on the NaNo blog all summer?
Drew Patty, I think, is going to be president some day.
So here's our shout-out: If NaNoWriMo helped you find true love or wrecked your life or opened some doors you hadn't thought would open, and you're willing to have us share that story with the world, please send it in! Stories should be 100-1000 words. Know that we will be sharing these stories far and wide, so please don't include anything you wouldn't want your mom to know about.
We've even created a magical Stories Submission area just for your tale. Don't be shy! Write it up and send it in!
- - -
Almost immediately, great stories started arriving in my inbox. We've been reading through all of them these past few weeks, laughing, crying, and eating a lot of these strange, fleshy sour-watermelon candies that Cybele brought up from LA on Thursday.
Sorry. That last bit didn't have much to do with anything. But these are very odd candies.
Anyway, we've given our fantastic new employee, Lindsey, the task of posting one True-Life Tale every weekday for the next few months. We hope you love reading them as much as we loved getting them. And it's not too late to send your story in! We'll keep running them sporadically through the fall.
And I have an update on Jenn, the Wrimo who needed to finish her novel before she could buy a home. Jenn caught her third noveling wind over the 4th of July weekend, and has been making huge strides on the rewrite ever since. Things are looking good for her having it done by November.
And that, my friends, is a tale with a truly happy ending.
Off to eat a few more of those pink candies,
Causes Chris Baty Supports