Sunday 9 November 2014

AMY: 30 DAYS, 50,000 WORDS, 0 EXCUSES...

Where is the best place to write a novel? On the floor, in the company of cats,with background music by 1D, and sustained by Maltesers perhaps? Reader Amy thinks so…

Amy says:
I am fourteen years old and I have published two books… this is how it happened! I really love writing and I was fascinated when my big cousin told me about the NaNoWriMo challenge, which is based in America and encourages people to write. The idea is that you are challenged to write a 50,000 + word story in the thirty days of November. If you complete it, you get your book published worldwide on Amazon, in paperback and on Kindle! I could do that, I decided.

The first few days were easy because I had all these ideas all the time and writing them down got me as far as 10,000 words. 50,000 words does not seem all that much until you try to write it, but a few days in I was already falling below my daily target. I thought back to when I had met Cathy Cassidy at the Wigtown Book Festival - she had said to write about things you experience and things you know rather than trying to imagine everything, so from that point I allowed myself to be inspired by my friends and my experiences and my feelings.

NaNoWriMo is difficult. I had to give up my clubs, my free time, even the internet - you have to devote your time to your story when you only have four weeks to write it. (Maltesers and Mum's home made cakes helped a bit!) When you get down to those last thousand words, there's a blank where you get so overwhelmed by how much you've already written. For me, those last thousand words, with an imminent deadline, are hardest of all. But once that word count goes over your target, the feeling is amazing. It's like having a present to give to someone; I'm the only person in the world who knows what's in that book. Knowing that other people, maybe complete strangers, are going to read it - that makes me feel really honoured. I now have two books, T.H.E. G.R.O.U.P. and T.H.E. G.R.O.U.P. 2 - where four girls enter an amazing world of adventure, mystery and danger. These are my books and stories - it's like watching a film that's just for me, and it doesn't feel like it has ended yet. I am currently writing my third book in the series!

If someone asked me how to get a story published, I suggest the NaNoWri Mo challenge; there's a smaller challenge for under 13s, or you can do Camp NaNoWriMo in the summer. The thing about writing a novel is that you can't tell anyone what it's about because it's not finished yet - even you can't be sure what will happen! So all I can say is that T.H.E. G.R.O.U.P. 3 is about secrets! I hope some people reading will try the NaNoWriMo challenge… it's not easy, but it 100% worth the hard work!

Find out more about NaNoWriMo…

Find out more about Amy's books….

Cathy says: 
Wow! Amy's self-discipline and dedication is an inspiration to all of us! I have two books to write before Christmas, so may be taking some of Amy's advice! Have you ever wanted to write a book or try the NaNoWriMo challenge? COMMENT BELOW to tell me more!


  1. A few of my friends have done the challenge but I've never had time or felt ready to do it. I write stories anyway and my Bondi fanfic now has over 100 000 words and 45 000 reads on wattpad but isn't really written for reading it just kind of happens. It's the longest story I've ever written as I generally only write short stories!

  2. NANOWRIMO!!! Yep, this is my second time around too; the sessions always coincide with music courses, but I try anyway. However, saying it's based in America is a little misleading, since it's the largest GLOBAL writing event of its kind!! If you join up, you get connected with other writers in your region, and they have regular write-ins! All in all, it's pretty damn awesome - Lauren

  3. A girl on the internet told me about that challenge and said I should go for it if I liked writing but I wouldn't be able to. Writing is a hobby, not a chore that requires me to stop enjoying life or eating meals or doing anything. I hate time constraints. Like, if someone served me my favourite dinner and said "You have to eat it in 5 minutes" it wouldn't be enjoyable any more. It's not nice and relaxed. It's tough. I seem to be the only person who sees the sense in keeping life simple. Why complicate things by throwing obstacles in the way?
    Blue. :-)

    1. I agree Blue, things seem less enjoyable when u HAVE to do rather than just do them for fun. Hamdi:)xxx

  4. I've written a book, am editing it and writing the first draft of its sequel... I'll have to try the NaNaWriMo next year! Méabh

  5. Hi Cathy! I have wanted to be an author all my life, and I love reading. I wish I had published books already -I don't think, however, that publishers will listen to an eleven year old girl!

  6. I'm doing the Young Writer's Project where you can set your own word count. I've written 3,900 words of my 15,000 word count and I've been oretty much in target, so I'm hopeful to finish.

  7. Hay mitt it doesn't matter how old you are if you have got the talenent and the confidence I'm sure they would listen, I am currently writing a series of short children's books and you can self publish on Amazon or get your parents to do it keep your hope I'm sure they will listen! Rosie xxxx

  8. If you love writing stories and want them to be enjoyed by lots of other people, I suggest wattpad. Wattpad is a website/app where you can create your own stories and read other people's stories for free. You could even get your story published if it is good enough! You can also follow your favourite authors and read books without internet on the app!! I really think you should all download it! I have written a few stories, with one of them having over 2,700 reads! Unbelievable! If you decide to get wattpad, follow me: sezzy3210 :)

  9. I love to write but I don't think I could do that yet.



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