Support Us Button Widget

Would-be Madison novelists, take note: National Novel Writing Month is nearly here

November is National Novel Writing Month. Sharpen those pencils. Your New York Times Bestseller may be on the charts soon.

Jane_Austen HiRes.jpeg

You have sense and sensibility to be a novelist, just like Jane Austen was.

Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

Perhaps there’s a Jane Austen scribbling away right now by the arboretum, a Toni Morrison in Monona, or a John Steinbeck in Sunset Hills. Perhaps it’s you, or you’ve always had thoughts that it could be you.

This month, you can make those thoughts a reality. November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and we’re here to tell you that you can do it. Just take some of these ideas and come December, you can say you’re a novelist.

Act 1 - The Set Up

NaNoWriMo is a nonprofit organization that promotes creative writing around the world. Its flagship program encourages bibliophiles to attempt to write a 50,000-word manuscript during the month of November.

A few NaNoWriMo books you may recognize:

  • Sara Gruen’s “Water for Elephants”
  • Erin Morgenstern’s “The Night Circus”
  • Hugh Howey’s “Wool”

How do you go about writing a novel? Literary agents have some ideas, and City Editor Jonathan recommends reading Stephen King’s “On Writing” and Anne Lamott’s “Bird by Bird.

Act 2 - Confrontation

Now, there’s rising action. There’s confrontation. Where do you go to write this novel of yours and how do you keep yourself motivated to finish it?

Madison Public Library | Libraries like writers. Visit one of the library’s nine locations, find yourself a cozy spot, check out some of their writing resources, and start cracking on your tome.

UW-Madison | The UW-Madison Writing Center, Program in Creative Writing, and Madison Writing Assistance are offering a variety of resources to fellow writers on campus and in the Madison community. Get some encouragement, attend an event, and keep writing!

Meetup | There are others like you out there. Join the Writers of Madison meetup group to find coming NaNoWriMo events, like one this evening.

Act 3 - Resolution

Now, there’s a climax. There’s the denouement (a book nerdy word for resolution).

You’ve finished the Great American Novel. Get yourself a cocktail at Leopold’s Books Bar Caffè and browse the bookshelves knowing that, perhaps, your work will be there sometime soon.

More from 608today