NaNoWriMo and PiBoIdMo: November is the Month for Extraordinary Writing and Ideas

November is almost upon us and with Halloween being Daylight Savings Night, we all get an extra hour of sleep on November 1. However, we writers, including those of us who write picture books and young adult books are crazy enough to participate in both NaNoWiMo and PiBoIdMo will make use of that extra hour and get a head start.

I am indeed one of those crazy ones who will be participating in both events which will keep my creativity flowing non-stop the entire month of November. piboidmo2015participant

You see, there is a method to my madness of doing both. First, I have never participated in PiBoIdMo before and since I primarily write picture books, this is a great opportunity. Second, I won NaNoWriMo last year and want to keep up the tradition. Third which is also the main reason to do both, writing for an older audience gives me the opportunity to really dig my heels into descriptive writing which is a no no in picture book writing as PB writers need to trim the fat of their writing to be lean. The fat of the details is left for the illustrators to create.

Tara Lazar, author of picture books such as , ‘The Monstore‘ published by Aladdin, ‘I Thought This Was a Bear Book‘ published by Aladdin, ‘Little Red Gliding Hood‘ published by Random House BFYR which is coming out tomorrow !!! and three more books being released in 2016 and 2017, started PiBoIdMo back in 2008. PiBoIdMo stands for Picture Book Idea Month and the sole purpose for starting it was to give picture book writers, such as myself, a challenge and writing opportunity in lieu of doing NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) which is of course for people who write novels. Novels tend to be 50,000 words or higher and picture books tend to be under 1,000 words.

PiBoIdMo has grown in popularity since it’s inception in 2008 whom the only participant was Tara herself. In 2009 she opened it up to the public via her blog, and in 2014 had over 1,300 participants with 800 of them completing the challenge. 2015 is expected to exceed the 1,300 mark and I will be happy to report the details when November ends.

Not only are PB writers challenged, they have several opportunities to win great prizes such as :

  • Feedback from literary agents
  • Original art by picture book illustrators
  • Picture book critiques from published authors and editors
  • Signed picture books
  • Bookish jewelry
  • Other cool writerly stuff

To learn more about PiBoIdMo, visit and then to sign up go to

To learn more about NaNoWriMo NaNo crest  visit

I hope to see many of you at either or both events. #justkeepwriting #justkeepwriting


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