November is National Novel Writing Month, which is referred to as NaNoWriMo by participants. NaNoWriMo was started in 1999 by a group of 21 young people with some spare time and an interest in writing. Over the years, NaNoWriMo has grown significantly with 256,618 participants in 2011 and an estimated 300,000+ participants in 2012.
The idea of NaNoWriMo is to encourage writers across the globe to conquer the fear of taking on a big writing project by diving in and writing a 50,000 word novel within the 30 days of November. (Don't worry. That doesn't include editing time.) Participants who complete the 50,000 words in the allotted time are considered "winners" and are offered a free manuscript of their novel, which they can later use as a tool to become a published author.
For those of you who are interested, NaNoWriMo is an incredible experience with local support groups for writers who are struggling with their novels. You can meet new people and possibly gain and build lifelong friendships with people who share your passion. You can check out the NaNoWriMo website here and sign up if you feel so inclined!