YMCA Literacy Services student to participate in Muskoka Novel Marathon
For the first time ever, a student of the YMCA Literacy Services program in Huntsville—the charity to which the Muskoka Novel Marathon donates its entire proceeds—will be participating in the Novel Marathon.
When the bell rings at 8 p.m. Friday July 12 to signal the start of 72 hours of high-speed, high-pressure writing, Nora Bartlett of Huntsville will be there, pounding on her keyboard along with 34 other writers.
After doing literacy training at the YMCA’s school, Bartlett realized she has the creative writing bug. “I wrote a short story for my school, and they were like ‘OMG this is so good!’ They really liked my stories. I was shocked because I don’t see it in myself, but they do.”
Then literacy staff suggested she participate in the novel marathon. “I’m really shy actually,” she says. “But I said okay.”
Marathon regular Pat Flewwelling, a four-time winner of the Most Prolific Award and one-time winner of Best Novel in the adult category, will be acting as mentor to Bartlett throughout. “I’m going to work with Pat,” says Bartlett. “We talked the other day and we’ll talk again when we get closer.”
The rookie marathoner already has a plan for what she’s going to write. “I wrote a story which got this whole ball rolling. Now I’m going to do the sequel, with the same characters in it. I have the whole thing in my head.”
Writer Karen Wehrstein, who co-runs the marathon with fellow writer Dawn Huddlestone, is thrilled to have Bartlett on board. “She’s come full circle, from benefiting from a program that we helped fund to contributing to that funding. It’s going to be so awesome to have her there.” Last year, the Novel Marathon blew away both its previous record and its goal, raising $15,000.
How does Bartlett feel? “I’m really excited, but I’m also nervous. I went last year for the visit and it was good. They were so nice.”
To donate to the Novel Marathon in sponsorship of Nora Bartlett, visit the marathon website at www.muskokanovelmarathon.com.