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A Novel Idea

November is known by many names: Native American Heritage Month, Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, and Movember (awarness for men’s health. For literary lovers, it’s a 30-day period of character naming, plot developing and constant prose in celebration of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).

With over 3.1 million words and 900 members strong, Hawaii is writing away.  You too can tap into your inner Shakespeare or Grisham by attending weekly “write-ins” held in Kaunakakai.

Alestra Menendez, a Kualapu`u School teacher, is hosting local writing workshops for NaNoWriMo participants to discuss their work, offer advice and keep each other on track with their goals.

“I’ve been hungry for feedback on my writing and this is a great chance to meet with other adults and share about the writing process,” said Menendez. So far, she has been joined by three other potential authors.

Setting their own, smaller goals, students at Kualapu`u School are also busy putting pencil to paper, writing tales of talking animals and life from the perspective of pizza.

NaNoWriMo began as a small summer project 11 years ago in San Francisco,  sprawling into a national sensation where participants are challenged to write a minimum 50,000 word (roughly 175 pages) novel solely during the month of November.  Novels that reach this ambitious goal may be submitted online at www.nanowrimo.org, turning the writer into an author.   

The next Molokai “write-in” will be hosted by Menendez on Saturday, Nov. 20 at Coffees of Hawaii from 4 to 6 p.m. For more National Novel Writing Month information visit nanowrimo.org.

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