This post originally appeared as a NaNoWriMo 2015 Pep Talk sent to participants in the NH Region. I will be sharing my NaNoWriMo 2015 Pep Talks and Pep Talks by Guest Wrimos on this blog throughout November. – Yvette
Welcome to the final stretch Wrimos! 2015 marks the 10th anniversary of the NaNoWriMo Young Writer’s Program, which means it’s the perfect time to hear from another Guest Pep Talker, Kathy Pearce aka haleypearc who has been leading the charge with a Young Writer’s Group at Oyster River HS in Durham, NH:
November has been a big month for Oyster River High School. Our girls’ soccer team made it to the state finals, and the boys’ soccer team went all the way—capturing their first state title in more than ten years. Our star female cross-country runner captured the state championship for the third year in a row, and our drama department is staging “Twelve Angry Jurors.” (That’s the politically correct renaming of the famous 1950’s play)
Meanwhile, in a corner of the library, fifteen students and two teachers are quietly clicking away at keyboards. There’s an old couch and coffee table, a Zen fountain, and a pile of writing books, baby name guides, and road atlases. Once a week, writers and authors stop by to lead activities or share their craft. This is where the magic happens for a different kind of superstar. Chances are, they won’t get a trophy in a display case and they won’t get a standing ovation, but most of them are perfectly happy that way. They are writers, and that is all they need.
This is the second year that our school has sponsored an NaNoWriMo club, and it is one of the most rewarding things we do, here in the library. Their excitement is infectious, which led me to win NaNo for the first time ever last year. These kids have a lot on their plates—academics, extracurricular activities, jobs, college applications, drivers’ ed—and yet they manage to crank out their word counts day after day. Before they are even finished, they speak of sequels or their next novels, while I’ve struggled to get off the ground with a single thread of a plot. I may not be crossing the finish line this year, but it’s fun to live vicariously through them. I’ll consider that a win, even if I don’t get to print out the nifty certificate.