NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program

Website review by Polly Conway, Common Sense Media
NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 13+

Delightful crash course warmly guides budding novelists.

Parents say

age 13+

Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 10+

Based on 13 reviews

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Community Reviews

age 13+

Risky social media, embedded in a good writing site

Nanowrimo is a site for writers, and its YWP (Young Writers Project) section includes legitimate educational content targeted to "writers 17 and under." The problem is YWP's Forums section, which has all the perils of any social media site for teens, including social media addiction. These forums have moderators who prevent the use of obscenity, and teens can productively share their stories and poetry and writing tips. However, teens also treat the YWP forums as a virtual community, and moderators do not prevent teens from sharing private and personal information along with their writing. The YWP forums include and encourage discussions of sensitive issues with strangers. Teens use the forums to discuss (and sometimes glorify or normalize) suicidal thoughts, self-cutting, addictions, mental health issues, gender identity questioning, and sexual exploration. (It should also be noted that outside the forums, teen writers are free to create fiction on equally controversial or triggering subjects.) In order to maintain a "supportive" community in the forums, negative comments are not permitted; only affirmation is permitted. All of the above remains hidden from parents, since an adult cannot create an account to monitor childrens' activity on YWP unless they identify themselves as an educator or provide a false birth date.

Website Details

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