A Writing Marathon is the realization of writing as a “moveable feast,” blending writing, a community of writers, and a journey through “place.” In the summer of 2020, four hundred teachers, students, and community members took a virtual road trip to eight Writing Project sites, engaging in place-based writing along the way. A representative sample of their writing has been published online, thanks to the work of Wesleyan undergraduate Elias Mansell.

Summer 2021 #WriteAcrossAmerica

The #WriteAcrossAmerica Virtual Writing Marathon is happening again this summer, and it’s open to anyone. Each stop on the itinerary will last 90 minutes and include an orientation by the local site to a place in their region or, perhaps, to a new conception of virtual space. Each stop on the itinerary will provide inspiration, time to write, time to share, and a sense of community.  Local stops will be facilitated by local teacher-leaders and welcome all kinds of writing and writers. We will be sharing our work with the hashtag #WriteAcrossAmerica.

Over the summer we hope to 

  1. Connect the NWP network and our wider set of colleagues through the simple act of writing together in community.
  2. Provide an opportunity for participants to “travel” in the time of Coronavirus and participate in a community of writers. 
  3. Learn about different places through writing. 
  4. Raise the collective visibility of the NWP network and our commitment to writing.
  5. Collect shareable resources for teachers to take their students on a virtual writing marathon in the fall.

2021 Summer Itinerary

Next stops on the marathon will take you North/South/East and West. Participation is free, but registering in advance helps the host site plan.

All visits are scheduled at 2:00-3:30pm PT / 3:00-4:30pm MT / 4:00-5:30pm CT / 5:00-6:30 ET

DateSite
May 25
Louisville Writing Project (KY)
June 1Chippewa River Writing Project (MI)
June 8
South Mississippi Writing Project (MS)

July 6Boise State Writing Project (ID)
July 13UCI Writing Project (CA)
July 20Prairie Lands Writing Project (MO)

July 27San Antonio Writing Project (TX)
August 3Eastern Michigan Writing Project (MI)
August 10Bay Area Writing Project (CA)

Get Your Badge

An NWP Writer digital badge is available for those that complete half or more of the stops. Apply for yours today!

For Educators

The resources from last summer are still available if you would like to take your students on a Virtual Writing Marathon this school year. It is a great opportunity for students to practice writing, travel virtually, and build classroom community through “traveling” together and sharing writing. Here is a guide to support you.

If you do lead your students on a #WriteAcrossAmerica, we would like to hear about it! Register your Virtual Writing Marathon itinerary.

Learn More About Writing Marathons

The summer’s Virtual Marathon grows out of a long tradition of writing marathons at local sites and through the NWP network. The model was developed most richly in New Orleans at the Southeast Louisiana Writing Project. See their website for the New Orleans Writing Marathon. This website has the latest information about the New Orleans Writing Marathon Retreat as well as links to essays, books, radio programs, and more.

You can find resources here at WLL for planning your own ‘in-person marathon” (safety permitting, of course). See:

And two selections for sale at Lulu:

10 thoughts on “#WriteAcrossAmerica 2021”
  • Sharyn Dimmick says:

    I notice that there is a time given for each time zone, but not a day or days of the week. Did I miss something?

    April 25, 2021 at 2:36 pm
  • Luke Hokama says:

    Hi Sharyn: The date is in the left column next to the site name, so the first one takes place on May 25 (Tuesday), then June 1 and every week on Tuesday after that.

    April 26, 2021 at 10:00 am
  • Stephen Jones says:

    Great plan for a virtual writing marathon. I miss them after retiring after several onsite marathons all around the country during annual NWP/NCTE conferences. Thank you for this revival.

    May 4, 2021 at 2:15 pm
  • Michele Scutti says:

    Hi! I already registered a few months ago and only received a Zoom link for the FIRST marathon on 5/25. Last week I had to email about the link. This week I still have not received a Zoom link and we meet in less than an hour. I just re-registered hoping this will solve things. And, no, nothing is in my spam folder.

    June 8, 2021 at 1:20 pm
    • Luke Hokama says:

      Hi Michele: I’m sorry you’re not receiving the links. I have forwarded your message to the program coordinator.

      June 9, 2021 at 7:21 pm
  • Kemba Metropoulos says:

    I did not receive links for this week or future meetings either Michele. Luke, can you help me too? Thanks in advance!

    June 15, 2021 at 3:12 pm
    • Luke Hokama says:

      Hi Kemba–I was out last week, sorry! I have forwarded your issue to the team and hopefully it has already been resolved or will be soon. Thank you for your patience!

      June 21, 2021 at 5:10 pm
  • Dana Kaleta says:

    Help! Not receiving the weekly Zoom links… I have tried to re-register, but still no email with the link. Perhaps I am not doing it correctly? Any help before next week would be great as I am currently unable to access this week’s sesh. Thank you!

    July 6, 2021 at 2:14 pm
  • Kelly Jean Sassi says:

    Hey, marathoners! You only need to register once to join our mailing list for the whole summer. Links go out on Mondays. That week’s host sends it out to the whole registration list. If you don’t receive a link, check your spam folder. If it’s not there, contact kelly.sassi@ndsu.edu, and I will send it to you on Tuesday morning. We want to make sure you can write with us!

    July 7, 2021 at 8:02 am
  • Carol Niswonger says:

    A great summer event! With school beginning to “gear up”, I hope to attend at least two more, but the timing might get in the way. Thanks for all your hard work! This has really been fun! (And I realize there’s no “right” time for everybody — this particular CDT time worked for me — just maybe “not so much” as we get closer to the end. 🙁

    July 13, 2021 at 4:23 pm
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