12 years ago my precious daughter came into the world. She brought with her a message from God that He loves laughter and joy and delights in innocence. She is a spirited child full of wonder and grace. I love that she was born just after Thanksgiving because she reminds me of just how much I have to be thankful for.
Today is also a day to celebrate because of what she has done. Her first book goes to the publisher tonight. This book isn’t her’s alone. It is a special project that began just 5 weeks ago. Here’s the story…
The last week of October I presented 37 middle school students with a challenge, The NaNoWriMo. The NaNoWriMo is the National Novel Writing Month held every November. The challenge is to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. I didn’t think the kids were up for writing 50k words each but together they could do it. It broke down to roughly 1,400 words per student. The second part of the challenge was that they all had to use the same first sentence for their chapter, the same last sentence and a commonly agreed upon main character. The main character they created is a 13 year old boy named Timmy. The chapters open with “The door before Timmy was…” and end with “Once again Timmy was in front of a door.” Everything between the doors was up to each individual writer.The reward for completeing their part of the challenge was a real copy of their book professionally published via FastPencil.com.
Quick aside…We could not have done this without Mash and his incredible support team at FastPencil.com. The free upfront software and collaboration tool has given these students an opportunity that they never knew was possible. The classroom visit from “their Publisher” inspired them and showed them that this wasn’t just a school project but a real book.
This morning the score is: 63,149 words! 31 students done! 2 hours to go….
The reason I started this project was because of my daughter. Today, because of her 36 other students will become published authors. Today, because of her, 36 other young writers have cause to celebrate their own accomplishments. Today, the world has indeed been blessed by Grace.
(If you want to order a copy of “The Indigo Door 2010″ paypal me $10 by 9pm tonight. That’s when the order goes to the printer.