A is for Authors

The ABC’s of Homeschooling have started again, and my friend Dawn has a shiny new website. Check it out!
Link up to the ABC's

But before you head over there, let me ask you something: who’s your favorite author?

You probably answered that question with the name of a well-known author whose books can be found at your local bookstore or library. But my favorite author is the teenager who lives at my house. I can’t wait until her books appear on shelves across the nation, but for now I’m gearing up to be her biggest cheerleader.

You see, November is National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo for initiates). She has signed up for the challenge of writing 50,000 words, a short novel, that month. It will be, as they say, thirty days and nights of literary abandon! If you have a home schooler who is interested in writing, I highly recommend participating in the project. They even have a youth program that allows students to choose their own level of challenge. The websites offer plenty of encouragement, including daily pep talks, a personal word count graph, and more.

I’ve done it before, so I know she’ll have stress. She’ll hit walls (literary walls). She’ll travel useless paths down impossible plot twists. She’ll get tired and cranky. And she’ll still be responsible for her normal school work.

chocolate cake by littlemary, on Pix-O-SphereClearly, this girl will need chocolate.

Any other ideas for encouraging her are most welcome… please leave a comment!


About Heidi

I'm a pastor's wife, striving to live generously. I'm also a homeschooling, gardening, knitting, cooking, reading mom.
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12 Responses to A is for Authors

  1. amyleebell says:

    Sounds like fun! I wish they would have had stuff like that when I was growing up!

    Maybe she should get it out of the way right after (or even before) breakfast. I would also suggest just writing, without editing. Editing can wait for later. Write all those ideas down before she loses any of them! That’s what I have to do when I have a deadline looming.
    Also, she should keep distractions to a minimum. (I have even been known to hire a babysitter!) Is there a library or somewhere she could go to get away to think? I love my old junior college library. I even went there to think and write after I had moved on to a four-year university. I also used to take my son to McDonalds and let him play in the PlayPlace to give myself some much-needed relief from distraction.
    Homeschoolers are generally pretty good at prioritizing, so maybe she could be disciplined enough not to do her favorite activities of the day until after she is finished. For me, those activities would include eating, reading, checking email, FaceBook, and blogging.
    When she hits a bump, have her jump around in her novel. The one that I’m working on, I’ve written mostly straight through, but if I’m having trouble, I’ll write about a scene that comes later on. One that I’m sure about. It usually gives me more ideas for backstory.
    She could also try doing a creative writing prompt, only center it on one of the characters or plots in her story. She may find new material for her book that way.

    Good luck!

    • Heidi says:

      Those are all GREAT ideas! Sounds like you must do plenty of writing, yourself. And, yes, we have a library less than a block from our house… she often escapes there for distraction-free writing. 🙂

  2. Tricia says:

    Thanks for spreading the word! Love the way you support your daughter as her biggest fan and cheerleader. And with chocolate 🙂 My 14yo participated last year and we hadn’t even thought of yet this year.

    • Heidi says:

      Cool! Did she have fun? Enough that she’ll do it again this year? Because I have a 14yo who might enjoy some friendly writing encouragement from a young Hodgepodge! Let me know…

  3. Good luck to your teenager. What does she win, if she wins?

    • Heidi says:

      🙂 The official NaNoWriMo web badge is available for download to all winners. I’m sure she’ll proudly post it on her facebook page. Other than that, there’s just the satisfaction of accomplishing a HUGE goal!

  4. Marcia says:

    Sign her godparents up to be the 2nd/3rd biggest fans & cheerleaders! Also, if you need us to send extra, more, supplemental, etc. chocolate, just drop us a text! Hooray for our budding author – well, maybe she is past budding, since she is already published. Please keep us posted on the process, progress, and outcome! We will keep cheering from here!


  5. That is FANTASTIC!! We have an really awesome live-in author too, who has never completed a single project but has a million of them started, even to halfway finished. Short stories yes, but no novels or novellas. I just (as I was reading this post) told him about NaNoWriMo and hopefully planted something there. We’ll see if it pans out. He’s 20 and works full time so maybe, maybe not. 🙂 I am SO looking forward to reading it if she decides to share it!! (You should have it published by Blurb or any one of the other book creation companies out there. It’s around $20 for a hardback and you can add pictures too!)

    • Heidi says:

      Dawn, she just read the comments here and gasped aloud when she read about Blurb. What a fabulous idea! Thanks for letting us know about it. 🙂

  6. Pingback: Home School Posts Index | Give Away Seven a Day

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