Eleanor Rasor ’23

Eleanor Rasor ’23 hails from Yarmouth, Maine. She is a lover of sci-fi, fantasy and writing, as well as of her two pet cats. She is the author of the book “Twelve Dead Princesses,” a gothic fairy tale retelling that she wrote as part of a young writer’s program during her senior year of high school. It was published in August 2019, just as she was starting at Mount Holyoke. When not working on homework Rasor can be found reading, writing or playing games with the Mount Holyoke student org Renegades.

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November 15, 2019

What failing NaNoWriMo taught me

Confession time: I’ve never actually finished NaNoWriMo. Short for National Novel Writing Month, it’s an annual writing project where you try to write 50,000 words over the month of November. It’s a time of intense deadlines, excitement and no small amount of stress. But the end product can leave an author with a completed draft of a new book — or at least the beginning of one. Plenty of well-known books, such as “The Night Circus” and “Cinder,” had their origins in this month of intense writing.

I first heard about NaNoWriMo during middle school, but I didn’t attempt it until my sophomore year of high school. I was spurred on by the idea for the book that would eventually become “Twelve Dead Princesses,” my retelling of the gothic fairy tale that was published in 2019. I was determined to give it a try and get a big chunk of the book done by the end of the month. But this was November 2016, and we all know what happened then. The presidential election, combined with plenty of other things in my already busy life, meant that although I didn’t end the month with nothing, I fell somewhat short of my goal of 50,000 words.

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