Monday, March 12, 2012
8 Tips that Work for Young Writers Now
|Teen writers get serious, dedicating 4 days of spring break to writing for real with Terri|
|4th & 5th graders dive into writing with senses |
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- Write about what you know. Does that sound boring? It's not. In
northern Nevada, where I live, some people see cowgirls, soaring mountains,
glossy red and white cattle and wild horses every day. My mail indicates those
sights are not at all boring.
- Use your senses. How does a sidewalk smell after a summer rain?
Can you describe the sound of something that keeps you awake at night? What do
you feel when you hug your grandmother good-bye? No experiences are wasted on
writers, because we store each one in our brain cells!
- Use plenty of conflict. Happily-ever-after isn't as much fun if
your characters don't earn it. If your main character is rich, beautiful and
lucky on page one and still rich, beautiful and lucky ten pages later, you might
not have any readers left when you write THE END.
- Find a critique partner (someone to read your story and offer
suggestions). Be willing to listen to advice on things she or he knows about.
Personally, I take horse advice from my critique partner, a former jockey and
the owner of many horses. I take plotting advice from my mom, who reads about
eight hours a day. She definitely knows if I need to pick up the pace or slow
down and explain.
- Enter contests which are limited to people your age or younger.
That will cut your competition enormously. If you placed in a contest, you may
be able to convince an editor that you are working on the craft of writing. Of
course, you'll have to show her a darn good story, too.
- Find out which publishers are printing the sort of stories you
want to write. A great source for this is The Writers Market (it's very
expensive, so checking it out of the library might be the best option) look at
books in bookstores and check the copyright page to see which publishing house
- Read. Read. Read.
- Write. Write. Write.
Terri Farley @ 4:00 AM