Library Moments: NaNoWriMo

nanowrimoErin Kenohan-Berning: Branch Services Librarian: Hello, I am Erin Kernohan-Berning from the Haliburton County Public Library, and this is Library Moments. Once a week some of us from the library will come and talk about books, upcoming events, or services we offer at the library.

November is National Novel Writing Month, also known as NaNoWriMo. NaNoWriMo encourages aspiring writers to write a 50,000 word novel during the month of November.  Started in 1999, the first National Novel Writing Month had only 21 participants – but has grown to over 300,000 participants, with 250 traditionally published novels credited to the exercise. Today we have Amanda Wilk and Bessie Sullivan to tell us about their favourite NaNoWriMo novels.

Amanda Wilk, Public Services Librarian: Did you know that some of the most popular Fangirlnovels in recent history like Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, and The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern were first written during National Novel Writing Month?

Young adult authors make up a large number of those who have successfully published a NaNoWriMo novel, including Stephanie Perkins, author of Anna and the French Kiss, and Jeyn Roberts, the author of Dark Inside, which was the winner of the 2013 White Pine Award, an honour awarded to young adult fiction writers by readers in grades 9-12, who vote for their favourite title from a shortlist of titles selected by a nominating committee.

One of my favourite young adult novels published this year, which was also written during NaNoWriMo is Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. Fangirl is a novel about Cath, an identical twin attending university for the first time, and coping with her sister Wren’s attempts to distance herself from their closeness. Cath enjoys living in fictional realms more than the real world, and in particular loves inhabiting the world of Mages, a Harry Potter-eqsue land created by author Gemma T. Leslie. A talented writer herself, Cath has developed a following of thousands by crafting fanfiction about Simon and Baz, two of the main characters in the series. Fangirl is such a joy filled coming of age story, which I will enjoy reading over and over again.

Forest of Hands and TeethBessie Sullivan, County Librarian: The book I choose from the long list of NaNoWriMo titles is The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan.

In Mary’s world there are simple truths. The Sisterhood always knows best. The Guardians will protect and serve. The Unconsecrated will never relent. And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village; the fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth. But, slowly, Mary’s truths are failing her. She’s learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets, and the Guardians and their power, and about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness. When the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, she must choose between her village and her future—between the one she loves and the one who loves her. And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside the only one that Mary has even known?  The Forest of Hands and Teeth is the first in a critically acclaimed Young Adult Trilogy.

Erin: For more information on National Novel Writing Month, or to participate, visit  All titles mentioned in Today’s Library Moments are available at the Haliburton County Public Library as well as many more NaNoWriMo novels.  Thanks for tuning in to 100.9 CanoeFM.

*originally aired on 100.9 Canoe FM from November 11th-18th 2013


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