No, that’s not some secret code. It stands for National Novel Writing Month. Every November, people all over the world sign up to attempt to write a novel in one month. I’ve never tried it. Don’t know that I would. But it’s a neat project and I know people who have tried it (although no one I know has yet published a novel from this exercise).

So, why do I bring this up? Because it’s an unspoken part of today’s featured book.

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld is actually two novels for the price of one. One story is about Darcy, an up and coming YA novelist who has moved to New York as she finishes edits on her about to be published debut novel…which she wrote during the month of November. (Although NaNoWriMo is never explicitly mentioned.)

The second story is Darcy’s novel about a girl named Lizzie who is trapped in a terrorist attack at an airport. In an attempt to “play dead” and escape the terrorists, Lizzie discovers that she can cross over into the world of the dead. She also discovers she can see ghosts, including the one that’s been hanging around her home.

The chapters alternate, so you get a little bit of Lizzie, then some Darcy, then back to Lizzie. This book is also a good argument for knowing classic literature, because then you can laugh at a girl named Darcy writing a book about a girl named Lizzie. (Here’s why it’s funny.*)

We have both the print book and the audiobook. Westerfeld is a fun writer, who can write all sorts of things…steampunk alternative history, dystopia, suspense/thriller. I almost always enjoy hanging out in one of his books.

*Yes, I linked to Wikipedia. This is one of those times when it’s a good resource.


One response to “NaNoWriMo

  1. Laura Selinsky

    Lizzie and Darcy? Really? That is just so cute.
    On a marginally more serious note, I have done NaNoWriMo, and I have the sticker to prove it. Unlike some of my writing partners, I have never made it to 50,000 words in 30 days, as I have Shakespeare Day and Thanksgiving to worry about in November and too strong an internal editor to draft fiction at more than 30 words a minute.

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