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2012 Top-Rated Nonprofit

The Office of Letters and Light

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, Media & Communications

Mission: The Office of Letters and Light organizes events where children and adults find the inspiration, encouragement, and structure they need to achieve their creative potential. Our programs are web-enabled challenges with vibrant real-world components, designed to foster self-expression while building community on local and global levels.

Programs: National Novel Writing Month, Script Frenzy, the Young Writers Program

Community Stories

2530 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

NanoWrimo helped my daughter gain confidence in writing, which was difficult for her due to ADD. After succeeding in NanoWrimo, she went on to get an A in her freshmen writing class in College. I also enjoy the fun of writing through NanoWrimo... I want to be a published writer some day! Thank you Office of Letters and Light for providing the NanoWrimo experience for the world.

3

Donor

Rating: 5

This organization encourages me and hundreds of thousands of others all over the world to follow our dreams of writing a novel, being the writer we always felt was inside us. Writing takes commitment, courage, and inspiration. All of us dedicate a month to put the novel as a top priority. That is pretty amazing how many finish! It changes something inside of all of us. Our stories go on to effect others that read the stories. It isn't your ordinary non-profit. They are encouraging a movement and inspiring people to follow their dreams!!!

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

Your option in the' role category', doesn't allow one to put in more than one choice. The Office of Letters and Light is like a breath of morning sunshine. It not only is helping those that have an interest in writing, but challenging them to write better than they ever have in their life. I had this opportunity. I've always loved writing, but I was missing a piece of the puzzle, but joining a contest to make you totally focus on the writing You don't return to it for six weeks to edit. The time away breathes new life in your story and opens it up in ways you didn't know existed. It makes a difference in the story's cohesiveness.You fall in love with the idea of your story all over again. You fall in love with your characters. What a thrill to be sharing the same experience with writers locally and around the world that are trying to accomplish the same thing. To write a novel that opens us up to new friends and their experiences is a joy and a privilege. Additionally, I was so pleased with my support and the quality of my work, I wanted to be supportive so I donated money as well. I would have further been involved in their book program, but I had just given about 1000 books to a local library. I think that program is great too. Then they have the Script Writing Frenzy for April. What fun. You know all the stuff they do for the adults, is also done for the schools. To get kids involved in using their imaginations and putting things aside simply create. What a wonderful experience for them, Great authors will come out of these moments with them million dollar sales in books, and new quotes and philosphies will come about . Words that may carry on with new meanings and moments of hope to get us through the darkness and back into the light. That's what it means to be a part of this organization. I stand proud like the others, that i'm making a difference on a most general and primal need for mankind to read. Reading is power and it is knowledge and once you've began reading, you never go back to not reading. You do it for life. That is the type of enthusiasm we are trying to stir up into today's youth.

Review from Guidestar

dk0805

Volunteer

Rating: 5

NaNoWriMo and the Young Writers Program of NaNoWriMo made a huge difference in my teaching junior high students. We all became authors. They became leaders to their peers, younger students in our system, and even to parents, who were surprised and delighted their children wrote novels. The staff is warm, friendly, helpful, personable, and make one feel a part of the organization. The Office of Letters and Light is one of my favorite nonprofits.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Office of Letters and Light is a great nonprofit. My experience and the experiences of my students was second to none. NaNoWriMo and the Young Writers Program of NaNoWriMo offer resources, helplines, and encouragement for growing in literacy. The new director of YWP, Tim Kim, is awesome. He and Chris Angotti are so helpful and led my 8th graders to engage in literacy for the whole month, loving every minute of it. The Office of Letters and Light is still influencing us, as this month we are editing our novels. Next we will get a free copy because of a donation from CreateSpace.

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1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Office of letters and light is a great charity that runs a few great programs for writers including NaNoWriMo and Camp NaNoWriMo. These events help people from all around the world write a novel in a month. This charity has really helped me personally will writing and has me waiting till their next event because I can't wait to join in. The really nice thing about the OLL is all of their programs are free.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Office of letters and light is one of my favorite charities. It allows kids and adults alike to find there inner novelist and we a novel. With the traditional NaNoWriMo in November and 2 other sessions in the summer.

1 Ginny K.

Client Served

Rating: 5

This organization's encouragement of writing - including thinking about, planning and discussing writing - has helped me concentrate on my writing goals. I have also seen the results of its Young Writers program in schools, helping children realize the fun and satisfaction of writing even when it requires work. I have passed on news of its NANOWRIMO annual event to many of my friends and even to people I have just met who show any interest in writing.

Previous Stories
1

Donor

Rating: 5

The Office of Letters and Light not only encourages people of all ages to write but also to improve their writing and make use of their creativity. I have personally been able to watch the growth of the organization's work from my first sign-up several years ago to my daughter's participation this year. She not only worked on her own writing, but also, as a student teacher, led third and fourth graders on their adventures into writing. An organization that can excite three generations is definitely one to keep around!

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Roshannah

Client Served

Rating: 5

The staff at OLL are all incredible at motivating and keeping us writers going throughout the year. They work tirelessly to develop the support they offer and have the highest intentions for everyone involved. The Young Writers Program benefits hugely from everyone's efforts and it feels so good to be a part of it all. I love sharing with other local writers about the benefits of signing up with Nanowrimo and seeing them blossom.
I cannot recommend highly enough!

Previous Stories
1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Nanowrimo was one of those serendipitous finds that can happen when surfing the net. I cannot remember how I got there, but I do remember the date - 1st October 2010! As I made my way around the site, I recall thinking, why did I not know of its existence before? I signed up immediately and haven't looked back since. Whether you are new to writing, or wanting inspiration to practice your art, Nanowrimo fits the bill. The fact that it not only supports aspiring writers but also provides support through the Young Writers Program means that you get to give something back too. The website is extremely well thought out and enables you to feel part of the larger (international) writing community. There are forums and a great buddy system too, all geared to supporting, you the writer. I found the stats particularly motivating as they give you visual feedback on how you are going in relation to the 50,000 word challenge. I was a first time winner and committed to signing up each year from now on - can't imagine a November without it. Have also signed up for Script Frenzy in April. Can't wait!

Review from Guidestar

Leann F.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have told so many people about NaNoWriMo. I love the atmosphere and support they give to writers. The groups that get together locally are always fun, and it is great to be able to dedicate time to a novel.

Muriel M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Some years ago someone suggested I needed to 'exercise my creative muscle' and that I should do so by trying NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month. The idea is, for adults, to write 50k words of a novel during November, but there is also an excellent Young Writers' Programme which stimulates and encourages youngsters to set and achieve their own writing goals. All of this is managed on voluntary donations and such fundraising as can be achieved.

The Office of Letters and Light is always supportive and helpful and finds time to answer the most trivial enquiries with courtesy and genuine friendliness, which makes a huge difference to hopeful writers who may be in any form of difficulty.

They deserve any assistance they can get, and in particular help from you!

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a child and in my teens and 20s I loved to write, but when my children came along my creativity was channelled into other directions. Close on 7 years ago somebody who had known me then asked me what I was writing and when I laughed it off she suggested I needed to 'exercise my creative muscle'. In other words I needed to get back into the habit of writing and she suggested that NaNoWriMo would help me get back into the swing. Since then I have become involved and really enjoyed the experience. The people at OLL are totally supportive of everyone with whom they come in contact and are always ready, willing and able to give their help to all and sundry. I have seen people of every age from 7 to 70+ blossom as they participated, and in my region we have a range of nationalities who all get together and get along splendidly. I cannot perceive of November without NaNo!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The young writer's program brought about by NaNoWriMo is an amazing opportunity for teens and young adults interested in writing. By writing 50,000 word goals It makes the writer realize what deadlines (And coffee) are all about. My first official year with the orginization was this year. But I only just recently discovered this jewel of a writing program! It's amazing the work that Angotti and his band of merry writers are capable of!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experience with OLL is all through their National Novel Writing Month program, Nanowrimo.org. If it weren't for Nanowrimo I would hardly be writing now! Nano gave me a kickstart into imagination and brilliance again, and led me to another amazing website for young writers. Because of a Nano, I am going far over and up from everything I imagined. I am in love with writing!

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo), which is the child program of the Office of Letters and Light, helped me write a novel. This is the only way I ever would have done so. The forums were friendly and well-moderated; the staff was amazing. I have no complaints about the system. If it wasn't for the Office of Letters and Light, I would not have begun a novel, I would not have met many interesting people, and I would have missed out on a great opportunity.

Review from Guidestar

Jennifer191

Client Served

Rating: 5

these people changed my life. I've always wanted to be a writer, but it's hard to truly call yourself if you don't finish anything. These people provide the tools, the motivation, or the boot to the behind needed to finish your lofty ideals. They have created something truly groundbreaking throuugh NanoWrimo, and yet its so simple. Through NanoWrimo, I have seen people get published, finish their goals, grow confident in their writing, become close friends with people across the world. Myself, I finally finished my first novel. It's not just a few pages of story dropped before the end of the first chapter. It's DONE. Because of them.

Zarra T.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I discovered the Office of Letters and Light last year when one of my friends recommended that I give a try National Novel Writing Month. I have always loved writing and they have helped give me the motivation to actually get started writing my first full length novel. I love their Young Writers Program too and actually signed my child up to participate this year. My sister-in-law also enjoyed participating in their NaNoWriMo program this year.

Cassidy F.

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Office of Letters and Light servers a great purpose: to bring the joy of writing to people. It's really far more completed than that, because it's all about encouraging people to tell stories, which will release their inner artist. I've just finished my second NaNoWriMo in a row, and though this one was a little less stressful than the last, it allowed me to complete another novel--one that I will one day publish. My first novel had been submitted for publication as well, for what The Office of Letters and Light has done is push me towards my dream of being a writer. And write I have . . . Let others be served by the Office of Letters and Light, and see if they come away feeling the same as I have two years running.

Donor

Rating: 5

The Office of Letters and Light not only encourages writers like me to get on with our writing but they also help kids with their young writers program. Of all the things I do throughout the year, I can honestly say that every cent that I have given, every time that I have participated in their events, the challenges that I have won and lost, all have enriched my life. I am moving forward in my life goals because of the work of this organization. Especially in today's world where art and literacy efforts are constantly getting defunded and shortchanged, the OLL's work truly stands out.

3 Katie M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Since I discovered NaNoWriMo in 2007, I've won and I've lost, but losing has never lessened the experience for me. I've met amazing people, experienced the event with people of all ages, and formed lasting friendships that I couldn't do without now. Writing and NaNo have been a staple in my yearly calendar, and I like to think that it has enhanced my writing ability through unhindered practice. I have been a participant, a donor, and a volunteer, and I recommend this event to anyone with the creative lunacy to birth a novel in thirty days.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've participated in NaNoWriMo every year since 2008, and it's been a rewarding experience to say the very least. I worked as a Municipal Liaison for OLL this past year, and believe me, the amount of work they do for us is simply astounding. I can't think of a more fun, stressful, and useful event for writers, and sincerely thank OLL for all that they do.

Review from Guidestar

Maria D.

Client Served

Rating: 5

2008: I was thirteen, trying to figure out what to do in the time when I didn't have school, and by some stroke of genius and or luck, I found the website. Again. I'd found it once before, at twelve, and thought it would be really cool... but I forgot about it... and it took me another year to find the NaNoWriMo website, and by then I had decided. I was going to... try to write a novel. I joined NaNoWriMo, put in my info, and then sat back a minute. Being that I was thirteen and still at the threshold level for the Young Writers Program, I joined that too, set a word goal of 20,000 words (I'd looked at the recommendations on the site), and then angsted for weeks over what I was going to write.

Fastforward to 2012: I've just won my 5th NaNoWriMo. Through the writing, and through participating and planning so many years, I have learned things about myself that I am sure I never would have before. I've made friends-- NaNoWriMo is responsible for introducing my to my best friend (EVER). I can measure myself by the novels I've written, and it's all because of NaNoWriMo that I have this. If it wasn't for this program, my scrivenings would be in paper notebooks, forgotten (I never ilked looking at my handwritten pages). I wouldn't be as confident as I am today. I certainly wouldn't be able to write as well today (not that there isn't room for improvement).

Basically, in a large way, NaNoWriMo has shaped me into the better, stronger person I am today. I think a donation will greatly help others reach this same conclusion.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

When I was thirteen I found National Novel Writing month. I wrote that novel, edited it for grammar and spelling, and let my parents and family read it.

When I was fourteen, I participated again, this time writing a full-length novel. After more serious editing, (including printing out the manuscript) I sent it out to friends as well.

That April I also wrote a comic script. I've never done anything harder or more interesting.

This year, nearly sixteen, I spent October planning my novel out. I spent November writing it, and since then I've been editing, planning out the sequel (which is extraordinarily important), and I think this one is going to be published.

NaNoWriMo has taught me to stick to something. It's taught me to set a goal and do whatever I can to reach it. It's helped me to speak better (after writing dialogue-filled scenes for a month, it's a lot easier to explain oneself to people). It's helped me pay more attention to people: how they talk, how they act-- gathering fodder for my novels.

ScriptFrenzy has taught me how to learn something new-- to stick to it even if it makes no sense whatsoever. (Comic scripts are not a forte of mine.)

The Office of Letters and Light has my eternal gratitude for thinking of this amazing activity and making and KEEPING it a reality.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I came across NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month, at the end of October 2010 quite by chance as you do. I thought then, why have I not known about this before. I thought that the whole concept of challenging yourself to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days was wonderfully crazy. The story of how it all came about was itself worthy of a novel (or maybe Nano the film!). I loved the fact that the Office of Letters and Light (such a cool name!) not only supported writers and aspiring writers to accept and succeed at the challenge, but also supported literacy projects through the Young Writers' Program. They could so easily, and I'm sure people would have still have signed up, have run it for profit, but they chose to make a difference in the world though people doing what they love. The team behind the project are incredibly motivating and dedicated. They inspire and uplift and this comes through in absolutely every detail of what they do. I have just completed my third challenge and can honestly say that my chance happening upon NaNoWriMo was the best example of serendipity for me on the web. I cannot imagine a November without them now and what is brilliant is that they are still there throughout the year gently nudging and encouraging us to be our best selves.

momof5

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter introduced me to NaNoWriMo five years ago and I have participated (and won!) every year since that time. With great information and tremendous support, I am again writing --a novel every year! As I hone my craft and gain experience, I feel proud of my accomplishments and look forward to possible publication. I have been so encouraged by others who are on this same journey, many of whom are now published authors. Not only do adults participate, but this site has encouraged young writers across the globe. I involve more people every year, and am thrilled to spread the word that "Yes, you CAN write a novel!" The pep talks help us all stay on track and the challenge is profound and gets to me every year!

Sarah H.

Donor

Rating: 5

Today I completed my 3rd NaNo novel. Without NaNo, I would never have met my amazing critique group that has helped get me published. The community spirit that NaNo builds is irreplaceable, as is the work the contribute to literacy.