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List of timed artistic challenges

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NaNoWriMo has inspired many timed challenges within and outside of writing. Except as noted, all challenges are unofficial and not sanctioned by National Novel Writing Month.

Active challenges

Community Jams

These jams and challenges are created and curated by the community, with different requirements for each jam.

  • W1K Writing Jams: List of community driven jams where you can live chat with other writers.

Year-round

These challenges happen throughout the year and are not a year in length.

  • 48 Hour Film Project: Make a film in 48 hours. The 48 Hour Film Project team tours different cities year-round. There is a fee to enter officially.
  • 6 Months, 6 Novels: Write a novel every other month, starting in January. Possibly retired.
  • A Round of Words in 80 Days: Write to your own goal, update your blog with your goal and progress and update the community on Twitter using #ROW80. Each 'round' is 80 days, and there are four per year, but you can join at any time.
  • Book in a Week: Participants write a book during the first full week of each month.
  • Draw 100 Somethings : Create a series of 100 different concept drawings/illustrations of one subject (boats, planes, robots, aliens, etc.).
  • Drawn & Quarantined: Spend up to one hour drawing online from a prompt. Two prompts are given daily.
  • FaunaFocus: Create artwork inspired by the featured animal of the month. Includes a competition; entries are judged live on Twitch.
  • National Journal Writing Month: Write a journal entry every day for a month with optional extra challenges. Takes place in January, April, July, and October.
  • National Novel Writing Day: Write a novel in a day. Self-organized, but people have done it.
  • SongFight!: Write a song with the given title. Listeners vote, the winner gets bragging rights. New title posted every ten days or so.
  • SongFu: Write a song based on monthly prompt. The deadline is two weeks from the prompt posting.
  • Steve The WriMo Forum: Do a NaNo-style challenge every month for writing, planning, plotting, editing, etc., and hangout/have fun with fellow writers. The *new home* of FebNoWriMo (Note: link expired), MarchNoWriMo (Note: link expired), National May Writing Month (NaMayWriMo), SeptNoWriMo, and NaNoPlotMo.
  • Write-a-book-in-a-day: Write, edit, illustrate, and bind a children's book in 12 hours. There is a fee to enter officially.
  • Kick 365: Create a daily sketch for 365 consecutive days
  • Kick 52: Create a weekly drawing for 52 consecutive weeks.

Year-long

These challenges start at various times throughout the year and last for a full year.

  • WriYe: Write several novels in a year, often involving setting your own goals.
  • The 365 Project: Take a photo every day for a year.

January

February

March

April

  • Camp NaNoWriMo: Write a 50,000 word (or other goal) project in a month. Run by National Novel Writing Month.
  • National Poem Writing Month (NaPoWriMo): Write a poem a day for the month of April.
  • Blogging from A to Z Challenge: Blog thematically through the alphabet posting every day in April except Sundays.
  • AprilArtJourney: Draw or choose a tarot card on 22 days of April to inspire a sketch, drawing or painting. Possibly retired.
  • BuildApril: Create any structures and buildings of any type in any media throughout April.
  • AprilShower: Draw pictures with the theme of rain during the month of April. Possibly retired.
  • Game of Tomes: Tourney of Tales: Writers choose a house to represent and cumulate their word count totals towards their houses over the course of the month in Game of Tomes writing streams on Twitch.

May

  • Story-A-Day in May: Write a short story every day in May.
  • Noveldom and Beyond (No&Be): Read over 10,000 pages in 93 days; No&Be starts on May 1st and continues until July 31st. Possibly retired.
  • National May Writing Month (NaMayWriMo): Write a novel in May. Set your word count goal. Write a new novel or work on a WiP. Challenge has moved to Steve The WriMo Forum, but old data is still accessible at NaMayWriMo.
  • Mer-May: Create one drawing/illustration of a mermaid every day in May.
  • MaySketchADay: Draw a sketch per day in the month of May.
  • MoveMay: Create any form of transport or movement in any media throughout May.
  • The Writer's Games: A series of 6 events (5 + 1 practice one) held over six weeks in which a random prompt is given to a group of writers and they have 72 hours to plot, write, edit, and submit for feedback from several judges and a chance for publication in the anthology 72 Hours of Insanity.

June

  • NaNoMangO: Participants draw thirty pages of sequential art. The June challenge is for those who want the extra challenge or can't participate in November. Possibly retired.
  • JuNoWriMo: Write a novel of at least 50,000 words in June.
  • GrowJune: Create any natural forms of plants, trees & vegetables etc. throughout June.
  • JourneyJune: Sketch or draw a Hero's Journey themed art challenge for the month of June!
  • JuneFae: Draw all things Fae: Fairies, Pixies, Brownies, Hobgoblins, etc. during the days of June.
  • Junicorn: Draw unicorns during the month of June.
  • JuneBug: Draw bugs during the month of June.

July

  • Art Fight: A month-long event in which you earn points for your team by drawing other peoples' characters.
  • Camp NaNoWriMo: Write a 50,000-word (or other goal) project in a month. Run by National Novel Writing Month.
  • LoCoWriMo: Write a sizable piece of original fiction in a conlang. LoCoWriMo started in October 2009, with the second and third LoCoWriMos taking place in July.
  • The 50/90 Challenge: Write fifty songs in 90 days, usually between 4 July and 1 October.
  • FigureJuly: Create anything to do with the human figure using any media throughout July.
  • Game of Tomes: Tourney of Tales: Writers choose a house to represent and cumulate their word count totals towards their houses over the course of the month in Game of Tomes writing streams on Twitch.
  • Julycanthropy: Draw werewolves for an entire month.
  • July Novel Writing Month (JulNoWriMo): Write a novel of at least 50,000 words in July.
  • World Anvil Summer Camp: During Worldbuilding Summer Camp, World Anvil challenges you with 31 worldbuilding prompts to get you motivated, inspired, and ready to worldbuild! Take part, grow your world, and win prizes!

August

  • 31 Plays 31 Days: Write 31 plays in August.
  • Smaugust: Create one drawing/illustration of a dragon every day in August.
  • Pawgust: Draw anything with paws during the month of August. Possibly retired.
  • Drawingaugust: A drawing or sketch a day or as many as you can manage throughtout August.
  • Witchgust: It did not start as a drawing challenge, but as the title of a Spanish short story book by Celia Año aka @brujadelteatro, but it ended up being a drawing and writing challenge about witches during the month of August. Possibly retired.

September

  • Three-Day Novel Contest: Write a novel in three days. Conducted on Labor Day weekend. There is an fee to enter officially and have a chance for publication because of the contest.
  • September Novel Writing Month (SeptNoWriMo): An offshoot of the original SeptNoWriMo. Participants set their own planning, writing or editing goals for September. Challenge has moved to Steve The WriMo Forum, but old data is still accessible at September Novel Writing Month.
  • Sketchtember : Create one digital or traditional sketch every day in September. Possibly retired.
  • Paintseptember: Painting of any kind in any painting media or digital throughout September.
  • The Writer's Games: A series of 6 events (5 + 1 practice one) held over six weeks in which a random prompt is given to a group of writers and they have 72 hours to plot, write, edit, and submit for feedback from several judges and a chance for publication in the anthology 72 Hours of Insanity. (Usually May and September but there was only a single session in 2021, so next session will be May, 2022.)
  • SHIPTember: Build a spaceship out of LEGO at least 100 studs long. No central coordination site found, but still active as of 2021

October

  • Spectober!: A mixed bag writing and NaNo prep challenge .SpecNoWriMo - Write any type of speculative fiction during October. Any goal. NaNoPrepMo - A whole bunch of fun activities and challenges to help you prepare for NaNoWriMo during October! Spectober 2014 is now up!
  • 24 Hour Comics Day: Create 24 consecutive comic book pages in 24 hours.
  • Gothic Novel Writing Month (GothNoWriMo): Write a novel of the gothic literature genre in October. Participants set their own word count goal.
  • October Poetry Writing Month (OctPoWriMo): Write 31 poems in October.
  • Inktober: Create one ink drawing every day in October.
  • Drawtober: Create one digital or traditional drawing every day in October.
  • Drawlloween: Create one digital or traditional Halloween drawing every day in October. Possibly retired.
  • Goretober: Create one digital or traditional gore themed drawing every day in October.
  • MonthOfFear: The Month of Fear is a weekly art challenge created by Kristina Carroll an co-run by Jenna Kass for the month of October revolving around the subject of “Fear”. (The rules and the challenge lists can be found on their page here)
  • PaintOctober: Any sort of handmade print in any subject or media throughout October.

November

December

  • Drawcember: Create one drawing/sketch/illustration every day in December.
  • dELFcember: Create a drawing/illustration of an Elf every day in December.
  • StillDecember: Create any form of still life in any media throughout December.
  • Illo_Advent: Create your own advent calendar illustrating each day a Christmas themed drawing until December 24.

Defunct and retired challenges

  • National Novelists Exercising Month (NaNoExMo): Exercise for at least ten minutes a day in December.
  • World Poetry Writing Month: Write a poem every day in February. Appears to be defunct.
  • Script Frenzy: Write 100 pages of script in April. Run by the Office of Letters and Light. Retired after the 2012 event.
  • National Novel Continuing Month (NaNoCoMo): Continue a novel you've started.
  • Southern Cross Novel Challenge (SoCNoC): Write 50,000 words in June. Run by Kiwi Writers.
  • Write a Damn Novel in June: Write a 50,000-word novel in June.
  • Science Fiction Writing Month (SciFiWriMo): A set-your-own-goal challenge for science fiction and fantasy writers.
  • Write Here Right Now: Write a novel in a month. This challenged happened with BBC Radio Scotland from 2006 to 2008.
  • National Novel Publishing Year (NaNoPubYe): Prepare and submit a novel for publication in a year. Appears to be defunct as of October 2015.
  • Story-driven Game Writing Month (StoGaWriMo): Write 20,000 words of rules, worlds, and flavor text in a game in the month of January. Link leads to error page.
  • NaNoPlanMo: Plan your NaNo Novel for 25 hours. September 1-October 20. Retired after the 2013 event.
  • Album-a-Day: Write, perform, and record a musical album in a single day.
  • National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) Post in your blog every day for a month. Originally in November, but now you can participate year-round.
  • Script Race: Write a script in a month. This happens every month.
  • ScrivenerScreed: Compose a short story associated with the given prompt and within the word count. $5 entry, token cash prizes available, and publication on the site.
  • Historical Novel Writing Month (HistNoWriMo): Choose any word goal write a historical novel in one month. Many different genres available.
  • Random Genre Month: Write a 50,000 word novel of a randomly chosen genre.
  • January Animation Month: Create 31 animations in January
  • Fantasy Novel Writing Month: Choose your own word count goal and write a fantasy novel in January.
  • Choose-Your-Own Novel Month: Create and finish a choose-your-own-adventure or interactive fiction game in January.
  • Januart: Draw everyday in January.
  • Thing A Day: Participants make a thing a day in February and post it to a collective blog.
  • Wikiwrimo Writing Month: Edit thirty pages on this wiki during the month of February.
  • National Novel Editing Month (NaNoEdMo): Edit for at least fifty hours in March. No current site.
  • April Fools: Set your own goal to write in April. Any form of writing is accepted.
  • Refrigerator Poetry Writing Month (RePoWriMo): Write a poem using refrigerator magnets every day in April. Retired.
  • AstroApril: Make drawings of galactic and space themes during the days of April.
  • May Novel Writing Month (MayNoWriMo): Write 50,000 words in May. A spinoff of NaNoPubYe.
  • National Epic Poetry Month (NEPMo): Write a 5,000-line epic poem in May. Retired.
  • Solo Photo Book Month (SoFoBoMo): Take at least 35 photos and create a photo book in a "fuzzy month". SoFoBoMo 2010 goes into July, depending on when you begin.
  • Kaijune: Create one drawing/illustration of a monster every day in June.
  • August Novel Writing Month (AugNoWriMo): Set your own prose writing goal for August.
  • National Noir Writing Month (NaNoirWriMo): Write a 50,000 word novel of dark fiction or in the mystery genre during August.
  • 24 Hour Writing Contest: Compose a short story associated with the given prompt and within the word count.
  • Shiptember: A recent challenge that started in 2016, it encourages participants to draw a ship per day through the whole month of September. Prompts were just included in 2018.
  • National Playwriting Month (NaPlWriMo): Write a play of at least 75 pages in November.
  • NaNoDrawMo: Draw 50 pieces in a month.
  • 30 Characters Challenge: Design 30 new characters in 30 days.
  • National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo): Publish one post on your personal website or blog every day.
  • National eBook Writing Month (EBookWriMo): Write an eBook in 30 days.
  • National Novel Finishing Month (NaNoFiMo): Write at least 30,000 words and to finish a novel in progress in December.
  • International Plot Writing Month: Participants write a plot in December.
  • International Story a Day Group: Participants write a story a day for the month of December.