Frequently Asked Questions! (+ Answers)

What is a Write-a-Thon?

So glad you asked. The Write-A-Thon is a 24-hour writing event at UNO to raise money for student scholarships, academic departments, and our own university press.

What does that have to do with me?

As much or as little as you want! But, full disclosure, we hope that you’ll come on board either as an individual Write-A-Thoner or join a team within your department. We both know you’ve got writing to do—whether it’s a lab report, a travel grant proposal, an email to your best friend, or a poem for your creative writing class. Whatever you’ve got on your docket, bring it to the Write-A-Thon and be a part of this inaugural event by writing with us.

Okay, but I still don’t get it. When does this happen, and what’s happening when it happens?

Sure. The Write-A-Thon will take place after we get back from spring break, March 20-21. That’s right: 24 hours. From Wednesday to Thursday. Think of it as clearing your slate so you can sail clear into the weekend.

During these 24 hours, Write-A-Thoners of all stripes will convene on our lovely campus (including the lakefront, weather permitting) to work. The writing that will happen depends entirely on the writers. We’ll also have snacks and coffee to keep things going, workshops to keep things fresh, and camaraderie by the bucketful—courtesy, of course, of the Write-A-Thoners themselves.

Okay. And where does this money come from?

You know the old adage about it taking a village to raise a child? Once you make a page on our fundraising platform, you share it on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, along with good old-fashioned email and the ancient art of verbal communication. When you make your asks, consider sharing a bit about what you’ll be writing during the event, and/or what you love most about your field of study, and/or how psyched you are to make UNO stronger. Let your friends, relatives, and well-wishers know what this means to you. Once they donate, you (and your team) will get credit, just like in a traditional (read: running-based—isn’t it cool we’re only asking you to write?) marathon.

Make UNO stronger how? Where does the money go?

Relevant! Half of all money raised goes to the scholarship fund at the UNO Foundation, and 35% benefits the department associated with the team that raised it. The remaining 15% goes to administrative costs of running the Write-A-Thon.

So what do I have to do, besides write?

Three things:

1. Register on our fundraising platform.

2. Beg, borrow, or steal as much money as you can from your personal network.

3. Show up to the event and, yeah, write, for as much of the 24 hours as you want.

And actually—

4. Don’t take #2 quite literally, but we hope you get what we mean. We’re sincerely jazzed about this event, passionate about the university and students that it will support, and hopeful that you’ll feel the same way when you join us as a Write-A-Thoner!

Is there a relationship between the money I raise and how many hours I write?

Nah, we're keeping it simple. Your donors' contributions will function as a flat gift in support of your participation, whether you hang around for an hour or all 24.

What are these prizes I've heard tell of?

Some of our generous sponsors have contributed gift certificates to be raffled off to Write-A-Thon participants! Every individual who raises money is entered into the raffle. The raffle will take place at the end of the Write-A-Thon; you don't have to be physically present to win.

Do I have to be physically present at the Write-A-Thon to participate, period?

Nope! You're welcome to raise money and write with us remotely. Just shoot us an email at and let us know what's up.

Do I have to raise money for my academic department?

Nope! While all UNO academic departments have teams set up that you can join (as well as some sub-teams within departments, like the Creative Writing Workshop program team), you don't have to join the team you officially belong to. If you don't join a team and register as an individual fundraiser, 35% of the money you raise will automatically benefit UNO Press (as the WAT's emcee, we are the default beneficiary department), with 50% of course still going to UNO's student scholarship fund.

What is this fundraising platform you speak of?

You're already there! Click here to get registered.