December 21, 2014

Medina
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Writers have one month to complete their dream

Dena Hall, left, and Katie Haspnyager, discuss the finer points of writing a 50,000-word novel during a writing session at Cool Beans in Wadsworth on Friday. The two are participating in National Novel Writing Month and hope to finish a first draft of a novel by the end of the month. (LOREN GENSON / GAZETTE)

For writers across the county, National Novel Writing Month kicked off Friday. Their goal? To write a 50,000-word novel by the end of the month.

“It evens out to about 1,677 words per day,” said Katie Hasenyager, a Wadsworth writer who participated in a “write-in” at Cool Beans coffee shop in Wadsworth.

Most writers at Cool Beans had participated in the event, known fondly as “NaNoWrMo,” which hosts a site for writers to sign up, get encouraged and meet other writers in their area.

They said they like meeting for group support, and the month gives them a good excuse to kick their writing into high gear.

“I didn’t ‘win’ last year,” Sierra Reeves said.

She lamented that you only can ‘win’ the month by hitting the 50,000 word count.

“This year, Reeves said she got up early, at 5 a.m., to start writing. She also wore her “National Novel Writing Month” shirt, drank coffee from a NaNoWrMo mug and painted her nails to announce her excitement about getting back to her writing.

“I figured I won’t have time to do my nails this month, so I did these yesterday to get ready,” she said. The black nail polish has white lettering with the words “NaNoWrMo.”

While most participants said it’s a really good exercise to just write and focus, others have managed to publish their work.

Dena Hall, a mother of four homeschooled children, said this is the only time she gets the chance to focus on her writing.

Last year, she self-published her fantasy novel “Greek Ends” and she hopes to write the sequel this year.

“It’s a struggle to find the time to get it done,” she said. “But if it’s what you want, you can make it work.”

It’s not too late to get involved in National Novel Writing Month. For more information, visit www.nanowrmo.org or visit the local Facebook page, AkroNaNo, to find out about local write-in events.

Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com.