During this November, a number of staff and pupils embarked on the daunting challenge of writing a novel in four weeks. This ambitious project is part of a global movement called NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). We met a number of times a week to discuss our work, share problems and support each other’s writing. Our approach was always very positive: it wasn’t writing 50,000 words that was the mark of success but writing anything new at all. The group settled down to around ten to twelve participants, one of whom (Lizzy G) who did complete her novel. This was a joint venture between her and Isobel M and between them they wrote 85,000 words! As a whole, the group wrote 200,000 words together – a massive success by anyone’s standards. Most said that they had written more than they ever had.
As we ate a Colin the Caterpillar cake to celebrate the end of the month, the students asked if the club could continue. The Colin/Caterpillar club was born at that moment. We now meet once at week, on a Tuesday in F15 to discuss our novels. We will set ourselves some new goals, share books that have inspired us, learn how to edit, how to plot and perhaps critique each other’s work.
Well done to all the participants!