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By Claire W.

November is here and that means National Novel Writing Month is in full swing. While NaNoWriMo serves as a national challenge for any writer to pursue the age-old dream of writing a novel, there are a number of well-established and best-selling authors who have used NaNoWriMo to motivate and jump-start their writing.

The following best-selling Young Adult books were started as NaNoWriMo projects:

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell – This book is an ode to all fangirls and fanboys out there, especially those who love Harry Potter. This book-within-a-book was so beloved by the author and fans, that she wrote two companion novels, Carry On and Wayward Son, which bring to life the popular fan-fiction her main character, Cath, wrote about in Fangirl

Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress by Marissa Meyer – Most people aim to write one novel during NaNoWriMo, but Meyer outdid herself by writing three, or 150,011 words, in a single month. Her best-selling Lunar Chronicles series is a retelling of classic fairy tales featuring a cyborg Cinder (Cinderella), Scarlet and street-fighter Wolf (Little Red Riding Hood), Cress (Rapunzel), who is stranded on a satellite, among other fairytale-inspired characters. 

Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy – This debut novel is about a 16-year-old girl, Alice, who is diagnosed with leukemia. She ropes in her best friend, Harvey, to help her fulfill a wild bucket list “that’s as much about revenge as it is about hope. But just when Alice’s scores are settled, she goes into remission, and now she must face the consequences of all she’s said and done.” Murphy is also the author of the best-selling series, Dumplin’, the first of which inspired a popular Netflix adaptation

Check out these other well-known novels that were written during NaNoWriMo:

Be sure to check out EVPL’s NaNoWriMo Beanstack challenge for a chance to win a prize any writer would love.

Claire W.

Claire W.


Claire enjoys reading, especially graphic novels and young adult fiction, and finding and exploring new methods of creative expression. She frequently contemplates the existence of unicorns and other magical creatures, and spends much of her time with her two very real dogs and husband.

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