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Running man

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The running man as he appeared on the site's header
The running man on the default avatar

The running man was the primary NaNoWriMo logo from 2004 to 2008.

The logo depicted a marathon runner carrying a sharpened blue pencil (on the header, the pencil is colored). San Francisco graphic designer Jeff Fassnacht created the image when revamping the website in 2004. While the running man was generally well-received, a vocal minority lashed out against the logo, declaring it to be sexist.[1][2][3] Despite that, the running man is still considered a symbol of Nano, appearing in fan-made icons and other works. The running man also appears as a default icon for Wrimos who have not uploaded an icon on the NaNo website.

In 2009 the logo was replaced with the current NaNoWriMo logo, which was originally designed for NaNo's tenth anniversary shirt in 2008. The shirt is currently still available in the OLL store. The Wrimo Report also featured an interview with the running man as written by Alberta:Elsewhere ML Aquadeo.

The runner's name appears to be Pencillius, though there are only two pieces of evidence citing this.[4][5]


  1. Caprock et al. "Man Running with Pencil". NaNoWriMo 2005 forums. October 31, 2010. Retrieved June 27, 2010. [1].
  2. Julie Cornewell et al. "Still no female icon!?" NaNoWriMo 2006 forums. October 3, 2006. Retrieved June 27, 2010. [2].
  3. Atalanta et al. "Pencil Guy logo is sexist and racist". NaNoWriMo 2007 forums. October 11, 2010. Retrieved June 27, 2010. [3].
  4. "I just spent $20 on a coffee mug." Fangirling My Finances. January 31, 2008. Retrieved June 27, 2010. [4]
  5. MSRenfrow et al. "Pencillius (Running Man W/ Pencil) Shoutout!" NaNoWriMo 2009 forums. October 31, 2009. Retrieved June 27, 2010. [5].