Grove's Ellie Keehn showcases her recently released novel, The Waves Keep Crashing. (Putnam Sentinel/Steven Coburn-Griffis)
Grove's Ellie Keehn showcases her recently released novel, The Waves Keep Crashing. (Putnam Sentinel/Steven Coburn-Griffis)

COLUMBUS GROVE — Ellie Keehn was 13 years old when she got the idea for a story.

“I have an idea for a story,” she told her father. “I’m going to write a book.” She was a seventh-grader at the time.

Last week, Ellie, now a sophomore at Columbus Grove High School, held the published book in her hands for the first time. “The Waves Keep Crashing,” is a fictional account of a teenage girl who loves swimming. Following an accident, she never wants to swim again.

“When I started writing it, I had no idea how the story would go,” Ellie said. “I sat down at my laptop and wrote the first chapter.” After this, the Columbus Grove teen would sit down and work on her book “when she felt like it.”

“Sometimes I had writer’s block and sometimes I would write every day for hours.”

During her freshman year, Ellie made meticulous additions to the story and worked on the growth of the central characters in her book. While working on her book she was also busy as a high school student, competing in cross country and dancing.

In her “free time” Ellie also enjoys reading, drawing, and painting.

“I wrote the very first chapter of my book in my room on the night I decided to start this journey,” Ellie said.

When her mother asked how it went Ellie recalled telling her mother “That took longer than I thought it would.”

Ellie credits her parents, Mike and Beth Keehn, and her grandmother for inspiriting and encouraging her as she wrote the book. She also thanks to numerous teachers who helped her find her passion for writing.

As she finished the book Ellie spent numerous hours with Beth Huffman, who served as her editor. Beth had agreed to help Ellie edit her book when she was 14 years old. Ellie and Beth worked together for a year editing chapters and rewriting parts of the book.

“She stuck with me throughout all of the additions and rewrites, even when I made it difficult,” Ellie said.

“The Waves Keep Crashing” is published by Proving Press. It is available for purchase from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Rakuten-Kobo.

Ellie said she plans to continue writing. “I would encourage others to write,’ she said. “It doesn’t matter your age as long as you are committed to your dream. You can do it.”