Novel Marathon Writers Zoom From The Gripping Beginning To The Climaxing End

The authors of the Muskoka Novel Marathon (MNM) didn’t want it to be that way, but the 2022 edition was the third marathon to take place entirely online, due to the continued threat of Covid-19.

The annual event, an intense combination of a writers retreat, literary contest and fundraiser for literacy programs in Muskoka, is usually held at the beautiful Active Living Center at the Canada Summit Center in Huntsville. But the writers got together again on Zoom to write as much and as well as they could between the starting bell at 8 p.m. on July 15 and the ending bell exactly 72 hours later — and enjoyed the camaraderie.

“It was an interesting online marathon in that we had Zoom on all the time, except for short breaks between 3 and 4 a.m., because Zoom has a 30-hour meeting limit,” says organizer KM Wehrstein. of MNM 2022, best known in Muskoka for writing. Cottage Country Kitchen section in Single Muskoka magazine. “So there would be writers on, both on mute and with their video off, but still there, for hours on end, together via the internet. I came to realize that it was the equivalent of fighting in the writer’s room at the Active Living Center for hours without saying a word to each other – but together.

In addition to the enthusiasm of the authors and sponsors, the outstanding support of the Huntsville community and the work of MNM volunteers contribute to the continued success of the event. Founded in 2002, it has never missed a year and has raised over $237,000 since its start in 2002. Funds are used to directly support literacy programs in Muskoka, including reading and writing basic, English as a second language, numeracy and digital. Technological training. The preliminary fundraising total for 2022 was $6,950, which is no small feat for the 32 participating writers, and is expected to increase somewhat before the event’s closing celebration, during which the winners will be announced at the end of September.

“Once again, I am so honored by the writer’s enthusiastic support of our literacy programs!” says Nancy West, Team Leader, Literacy and Special Projects for the Huntsville Branch of the YMCA. “We will be restarting ESL classes in Huntsville with the funds raised this year. This is welcome support as we see more local employers hiring foreign workers. »

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