Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Look at Them Young'uns Go!

For those of you not aware of the phenomenon known as National Novel Writing Month, let me fill you in: it's a wild literary spree whose participants make a goal of writing a 50,000 word novel from November 1-30. People all over the world are already typing like the wind in this year's "NaNoWriMo," but what's interesting is that this year the program has expanded to include writers under the age of twelve. Yup, there's scads of elementary and middle school students everywhere, madly whizzing out plotlines and character sketches, all striving to meet that lofty 50K goal.

On the "Young Writer's Program" section of the NaNoWriMo website, you'll not only be able to read downloaded excerpts from kids' budding novels, but you can also find a feature called "Stump the Librarian," in which Karlyn Pratt, the program's resident reference grunt, answers questions that kids ask when they need help figuring out particular details from their story.

Past questions have covered the making of ostrich jerky, the likelihood of head injury leading to amnesia, and queries about the possible ethnicity of a character named "Kriznakh." (Karlyn's answer: "Russian male. Maybe.")

Take a look-see to get a glimpse of the ambitious young writers of tomorrow. 'Tis amusing, my friend.


zp said...

Lucky the novelist whose outstanding questions regarding, say, the details of historical context, can be so painlessly and easily answered!

Brooke said...

I suppose it all comes of the kids asking very straightforward questions.

But your friendly neighborood public librarian should also be just as willing to help out budding novelists as the NaNo librarian is. (I get questions like that at work more often than you would think.)

zp said...

Ok, Brooke. We know each other in real life. And I'm about to add your blog to my sidebar. But I'd prefer you not mention to anyone that I keep a blog. Got that, not A-N-Y-O-N-E. And if you delete this comment after reading it (or don't post it all, if you filter your comments), all the better.

My regular readers are already quite familiar with you as a non-blogger and a real life inspiration to me; I called you Madame Librarian whenever I wrote about our conversations, your thoughts on The New Yorker, etc. Now, we'll all be reading you regularly, I'm sure. All the best, zp

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