NaNoWriMo. It’s pronounced exactly how it looks – weird. So, what is it? Aspiring writers, fasten your pen caps; this just might be the nudge you need to finish the novel you haven’t even started yet.
What is it?
NaNoWriMo stands for “National Novel Writing Month”. That’s right, MONTH. Participants have 30 days to begin and complete a novel of at least 50,000 words. Writing starts November 1st and ends at 11:59 PM on November 30th.
Wait, why? Some history…
It began in the summer of 1999 when a group of 20-somethings got together for the month of July to write novels. They had no concrete motives, or real experience for that matter. They simply wanted to do something with their time that was different from what everyone else was doing, and so they wrote novels. A quote from one of the founders explains why people across the nation are now dedicating their Novembers to this unique way of writing:
“We had taken the cloistered, agonized novel-writing process and transformed it into something that was half literary marathon and half block party.
We called it noveling. And after the noveling ended on August 1, my sense of what was possible for myself, and those around me, was forever changed. If my friends and I could write passable novels in a month, I knew, anyone could do it.”
Should I Participate?
The short answer is, YES.
Anyone who has ever thought about writing a novel is encouraged to do so, novices and novelists alike. And even if you don’t reach the goal of 50,000 words, you’ll have at least jumpstarted your writing project!
The official NaNoWriMo website allows anyone older than 13 to participate. Teens ages 13 to 17 can participate in their Young Writers Program. (Click here for their website).
How does it work?
These steps will get you started. For detailed info, we’ve provided the official NaNoWriMo website below:
- Go to http://nanowrimo.org/ and create your profile.
- Find an organization near you that will be hosting NaNoWriMo events (yes, Williamson County Library is one of them!). Writing alongside other NaNoWriMo authors gives you inspiration and an uninterrupted timeslot to crank out those beautiful words! Also, there could be free coffee.
- Start writing your novel! Writing officially begins on November 1st, but if you have something you’ve already outlined or started to write, there are no rules against continuing your work.
And after I write my novel?
As of November 20th participants can paste their novel to the official NaNoWriMo website. You’ll have the satisfaction of knowing you completed your 50,000 words and you may win some prizes along the way! The NaNoWriMo Non-Profit organization also supports the process of revision and publishing.
Previous writers have gone on to publish their novels themselves or traditionally. Famous NaNoWriMo novels include: Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, Wool by Hugh Howey, The Darwin Elevator by Jason M. Hough, and Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress by Marissa Meyer.
Even if you don’t produce an instant bestseller, you’ll still have written your very own novel in one month!
So sign up, start writing, and don’t forget to join us at the Williamson County Library for our local NaNoWriMo events!
By Jessica Dunkel, Reference Department
Remember that New Year’s resolution to become healthier? Yeah, me neither. I vividly remember the cold and the layer of blankets that were breached to either turn a book page or re-heat my coffee. Now that summer’s here, it’s the perfect time to get out, get active, and revisit the journey to better health! Getting healthier for those of us on a budget is no easy task, which is why it’s important to get the right support from affordable resources. Check out the links below that will help you feel your best this summer season, including quitting tobacco, nutritional tips, and getting active on a budget.
Need help quitting tobacco use for good?
- The Tennessee Tobacco QuitLine provides personalized support for Tennesseans who want to quit smoking or chewing tobacco completely free of charge. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) and for the hearing-impaired call, 1-877-559-3816.
Looking for information about how to make good nutritional and exercise choices?
- Get Fit Tennessee provides useful information to help Tennesseans stay active and eat healthfully on a budget. Included are a cookbook with low-calorie, low-cost recipes, a daily online food journal and a calorie calculator, which help users keep eating habits on track. The Health & Fitness Tracker helps you keep log your physical activities and monitor your progress.
Summer is also a great time for activities (so many activities!), but it can be hard finding fun things to do, especially on a budget. If you’re having a “I don’t know, what do YOU want to do today?” moment, below are a few links for singles, families, and kids that will get your summer going! Try a trip to one of the many beautiful Tennessee state parks or entertain your kids on those rainy days with some free books and book activity ideas!
Looking for affordable recreation?
- Check out the low cost getaways and free day trips from Tennessee State Parks. You can start by looking at their schedule of upcoming events for all ages, or browse their handy Things to Do page for fun activities including biking, birding, camping, hiking, waterfalls, and more!
Free books for children under age 5
- All Tennessee children under age 5 are eligible to receive Imagination Library books through the Governor’s Books from Birth Foundation. The program provides one book per month from birth to the child’s fifth birthday at no cost to the family and regardless of income. For information on how to register a child, call toll-free 1-877-99-BOOKS, or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Need reading tips and book-specific activities for kids?
- Find reading tips and book-specific reading activities for babies, toddlers and preschoolers to extend the benefits of the books in the Imagination Library beyond the printed page.
All of these resources are a great way to get you started towards better health and a fun-filled summer. If you’re looking for even more free ideas, there are always events going on for all ages right here at your local library! Check out our website’s calendar for the latest info.
By Jessica Dunkel, Reference Assistant
We all know Google, the double-edged sword of endless information. It’s fast, free, and extensive, but is it accurate? When you need trusted information fast, Oxford Reference Online is the perfect website. Your library card grants you access to the latest editions of over 37 encyclopedias completely FREE and accessible 24/7. No more worrying if your teacher will accept Wikipedia as a source. Or, as Honest Abe said:
“Luckily, Oxford Essential Quotations is just one of the 37 encyclopedias at your fingertips!”
|Art & Architecture||Music||Science and Technology|
|Classical Studies||Performing Arts||Social Sciences|
|History||Philosophy||Society and Culture|
Below are some key features for researching with Oxford Reference:
FUNCTIONALITY TO EXPAND YOUR RESEARCH
- Library widget: Log in to Oxford Reference quickly and easily, and choose whether to see results from all of Oxford Reference or only full text entries available via your library
- Annotation Functionality: Select text to highlight and annotate with your own notes. Sign into your Personal Profile where your annotations can be stored and managed under “My Work”.
- Oxford Dictionaries Online widget: Double click a word and see the free definition in Oxford Dictionaries Online
- Discoverability tools: MARC 21 records are available at title level, and Open URL increase discoverability and usage of library resources
- The Oxford Index Underbar: The silver tool at the bottom of your browser offers free search and discovery by generating links to related content from across Oxford’s online resources. For more information about the Oxford Index watch our video or go to http://www.oxfordindex.oup.com
FLEXIBLE USER EXPERIENCE
- Tools to Refine Your Search: Narrow your search/browse results with a multitude of subject or reference type filters and select “Book” or “Entry” to see your results displayed in your preferred format. Choose to see “Full Text Results Only” by checking the box on the search results page.
- Options for Customization: Keep your research organized by saving your research journey, favorite titles, and entries in your “Personal Profile,” located in the top right-hand corner.
- Share Content: With integrated tools including social bookmarking, email, and citation export
- Leave Feedback: You can now leave feedback about how useful you found entries in Oxford Reference using the box at the bottom of every entry
Other handy (and free) research tools include:
- Historic Timelines: 270 historic timelines organized by time period, area, and theme, with each event linked to a free entry in Oxford Reference.
- Essential Quotations: Oxford Essential Quotations is always unlocked and accessible to global users.
- Subject Overviews: Over 300,000 pages defining each unique term in Oxford Reference offer a start to your research journey, with links to related entries.
If you’re conducting a research project, planning a school lesson, or even browsing around to learn something new, do it for free – with confidence – anywhere, anytime – with Oxford Reference Online.
- Visit the Library’s home page: http://lib.williamson-tn.org
- Click on eLibrary Digital
- Click on Articles and Databases by title
- From the list of letters, select O-P
- Use the handy search box to start searching, or click on the Oxford Reference Online link to go to their full website
- If you’re at the library: you will be automatically logged in
- If you’re at home: enter your library card number and select Williamson County Public Library
For questions, call the Main Library’s reference desk at 615-595-1243 or stop by and visit us!