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Student Writer Overcomes Dyslexia, Celebrates First Published Novel

Meet the Ramapo College author Wednesday

A student says she wants her newly published fiction novel to act not only as a jumpstart to her writing career, but as an example for her peers.

“I’m dyslexic, so when I was younger I had a lot of trouble reading,” Lauren Santaniello, a senior literature major, said. “I struggled in school and got made fun of and I hated it.” Something clicked for the student when she was in fourth grade in the neighboring Wyckoff School District. “Once I started being able to read, I realized that I absolutely love to write.”

Fast-forward a little over a decade, and Santaniello is a published author. Her first book, Death of Ignorance was published in October.

Santaniello said that she wrote her first title during her senior year of high school and freshman year of college, “but then it just sort of sat on my computer for a while until a friend of mine interned at Stories To Tale," a local book publishing company based out of Fair Lawn. Eve Adams, the Stories To Tale publisher, was interested in Santaniello’s work.

The book, which the author says is the first installment of a trilogy, has a fantasy storyline. Santaniello says the book examines what happens to a classic antihero when he is surrounded by gods from various mythological histories.

The book is now available on Amazon, BarnesandNoble.com, CreateSpace.com and SmashBooks.com. Starting Wednesday, the book will also be sold in the Ramapo College bookstore.

“It was definitely a whirlwind the way that this all happened and I would not have been able to do it with out support from Eve, who has been very understanding, and support for my friends. They often read over my work to check for spelling mistakes. Spelling is still pretty tough for me,” she said.

Despite any difficulties she may face, Santaniello just submitted the manuscript of her second book, Death of Innocence, to her publisher, and is writing her third book, all while attending Ramapo. This Wednesday, the college will host a book signing and Q&A session with the young author. The signing will be from 1-3 p.m. in the bookstore, and the Q&A starting at 3 p.m. in the Alumni Lounges. Additional details about the events, which are open to both students and local residents, are in the attached flyer.

Santaniello says she hopes to answer students’ questions about overcoming obstacles, and pursuing goals. “I really hope that people will be able to look at me and realize that they can do better in school, they can be anything that they want to be, they can overcome challenges and really can live their dreams.”

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