Right on the heels of the Nickelodeon partnership, CreateSpace has scored another partnership coup.

NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writing Month, a month long free to enter contest held every November where writers try to write an entire novel (of a minimum 50,000 words) in 30 days. The contest is in its 10th years and is very popular. You can read more about it on their website. 

For many years now, NaNoWriMo has had a partnership with Lulu.com that allowed NaNo winners (people who completed all 50,000 words) to get a free printed copy of their book through Lulu in the month after the contest. However, this year, that promotion has moved to CreateSpace. Here is the email I just got (yeah, I’m a 2007 NaNo Winner, what do you want to make of it?)

Dear NaNoWriMo 2007 Winner,


Last November, you and those typing fingers of yours did
something amazing. And while you were busy bashing out your novel, we were
frantically trying to line up a prize worthy of your feat.  


Our goal was to find a self publishing company who would
give every NaNo winner a free copy of his or her winning manuscript in
paperback book form. It’s taken us until now, but we’ve finally found


CreateSpace, an Amazon.com Inc. owned company, is generously
offering every NaNoWriMo 2007 winner a “free proof copy” of their
2007 manuscript. What this means: A free proof copy of your manuscript in
paperback book form–just by following the instructions below. They’ll even
cover the costs of basic shipping to you. 


To redeem the offer, you’ll need a special NaNoWriMo
winner’s promo code.


Yours is: **You can’t have my code, sorry! -H**


It’s good for six months from today. Here’s how you go about
using it: 


1) Go to http://www.createspace.com/nanowrimo
and create a free member account.  

2) Set up your title: you will be asked to fill in
information such as title, author name, page count, etc. 

3) Submit your title: make sure that your title’s
information is accurate and complies with CreateSpace’s Submission
. Your Submission will be reviewed to ensure it can be

4) When everything’s uploaded and perfect, just request a
proof copy and use the above discount code at check out. Presto!  


After you receive your proof copy, you can then choose if
you want to make it available to the public at large—everything from showing up
for sale on Amazon.com to complete invisibility.


We asked CreateSpace to write up an introduction to who they
are and what they do, and I’m pasting that below. You can also read a bunch of
their helpful FAQs about copyright, ISBNs, and other important matters at http://www.createspace.com/Help/Book/FAQ.jsp

And if you have any further questions, you can contact them directly: http://www.createspace.com/Special/SalesInquiry.jsp 


Thanks so much to CreateSpace for making our dream-prize
come true! And congrats again on your NaNoWriMo victory. We look forward to
another year of literary abandon together this November.  


Warm regards,

Chris Baty

Director, NaNoWriMo


Now, their email implies that Lulu shot them down so CreateSpace was just the only person who said yes. Lulu must have felt that they weren’t getting enough out of this promotion to keep running it which begs the question, why would Amazon want it? Of course, to me, for the inexpensive cost of a single copy of a book, CreateSpace now gets their name shoved in the faces of a large batch of writers all of whom are likely to check them out and perhaps use them in the future which, to me, is definately worth giving out a free copy so I don’t understand what the disadvantage is. Heck, I am a die-hard Lulu fan and even I am going to create an account over at CreateSpace just to try them out and get my free book.

Maybe scamming was rampant in the past which is why Lulu wanted out? I encourage speculation below.

(On a personal note, I paticipated in NaNoWriMo last year and succeeded and am also doing it again this year. I highly recommend it as its a lot of fun and a great way to give yourself that kick in the pants. I’m doing it again this year too so if you want to read about that, I am covering that journey on my personal blog. Cheering on is greatly appreciated! :-))