Teenage Writers?

The writing process, writing advice, and updates on your work in progress
Posts: 118
Joined: February 13th, 2010, 11:33 am
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by craig » August 28th, 2010, 9:59 pm

Leonidas wrote: Apeprovost (sorry, don't know your name), you said that your algebra teacher inspired you to write. How many others have had this experience with a teacher? I told my English teacher last year about NaNoWriMo and by the end of it she stopped class for fifteen minutes so I could explain what it was and what my novel was about to the class. People were congratulating me the rest of the day, even though they didn't know anything about writing beyond the papers we're assigned in class.
I wrote and read sci-fi through middle school and high school. I had a deep interest in Star Trek -- my writing at the time was similar, but still unique enough that it was my own and not a Star Trek copy. Anyway, I was the type that would always finish work early in class, so I'd pull out a book and read for the last ten to fifteen minutes of class or so.

I remember my grade 10 English teacher looking at my book cover and saying, "Oh, you're one of *those* people." He said it loud enough that the whole class chuckled.

I remember my grade 11 English teacher, upon finding out what I enjoy, saying, "How can you read that stuff???" This happened to be in the middle of a class discussion on something or other, so the whole class heard and they erupted in laughter.

And, of course, being a Trekkie or a general sci-fi nerd in high school is not a cool thing, so even my closest friends would tease me about what I read and what I write. (I've made better friends since then.)

My grade 12 English teacher, though, was completely different. He watched Star Trek, I'm pretty sure, because I made a reference to an episode once and he totally got it, and he respected its story telling qualities. (We spoke mostly of Deep Space Nine, which is superior above all other Trek shows.) For a couple big assignments in the class, we had the option of presenting what we'd learned in any format we wanted. So, when we had to do a project on Hamlet, I tentatively approached him and asked if I could write a sci-fi retelling of Shakespeare's play. I was shocked when he agreed. When I got my assignment back, I was floored by the comments -- he enjoyed what I wrote and said it was a fun space opera to read and had offered suggestions for how to improve my work. So, not only had he accepted that this is what I like, but he encouraged me to continue in it! Later in the year, we had to do a research project and again we had the option of presenting our findings in any format we wished -- so I researched racism and wrote a sci-fi story on that. Again -- he loved it and offered very constructive feedback.

In grade 10 and 11, I had lost my interest in writing because of how my English teachers spoke of my interest in sci-fi. (I'm sure they would have approved of it if I liked the "classics" rather than what they considered to be trash.) But my grade 12 teacher totally woke up my storytelling interests. It was because of him and his support that I wrote the story that I mentioned in the above post that was later published in an anthology. As a thank you, I mailed him a copy. And because of all that, I continue to write. When I eventually get a novel published, his name will appear in the acknowledgements and I will mail him a copy of that, too.

I later discovered some very interesting information about him that probably explained why he was so approving of my genre writing interests. His wife, as it turns out, is international bestselling romance author Elizabeth Thornton. She writes the books out longhand and he types them out. As well, their son had a short career as a sci-fi/horror novelist. So... given who is in his family, it makes total sense that he wanted to encourage the same in one of his students.

Edited to add: OMG... I just checked her website... Elizabeth Thornton passed away last month...

Posts: 1
Joined: August 28th, 2010, 10:22 pm

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by michalgl » August 28th, 2010, 10:28 pm

I definitely qualify as a teenage writer, as I'm 14. It's hard to balance school and writing, but I've found that if I write a page every night before I go to bed I'm able to write a substantial amount. If I learn something new in school, I immediately take out my work and apply the lesson to my own story.

Posts: 1
Joined: August 24th, 2010, 1:41 am

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by QueenElizabeth9 » August 29th, 2010, 1:10 pm

Hi! I'm a teenage writer too- going into my junior year, in fact. However, I'm still not too serious about writing. While I enjoy it, I do not want to be a professional by any means or have my work published. I suppose it's more of a casual hobby than anything, but maybe that'll change in time.

Posts: 2
Joined: August 30th, 2010, 12:52 pm

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by Caleb » August 30th, 2010, 1:03 pm

For what it's worth, my website for teenage writers/readers launches Sept. 1: http://www.calebbreakey.com. Everything I do is free and centered on teens and their writing. I critique their work -- focusing on encouragement and refinement -- interview them, and discuss how to get better.

Feel free to take a look at my about page. Perhaps my free services are a fit for you: http://www.calebbreakey.com/about/.


User avatar
Posts: 99
Joined: July 30th, 2010, 11:35 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by Leonidas » August 30th, 2010, 4:54 pm

Caleb, I think I'll join your site. To send in a submission, do you need to be a member first? I'll be sure to watch the site regardless. Thanks for posting the link!

Posts: 2
Joined: August 30th, 2010, 12:52 pm

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by Caleb » August 30th, 2010, 5:02 pm

Sounds great, Leonldas. There's no membership required, and I'm receiving submissions on a first-come, first-served basis because the site is just now launching.

Looking forward to it,

Posts: 7
Joined: August 21st, 2010, 2:00 am

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by CourtneyLeigh » September 1st, 2010, 11:22 am

I love reading all these comments! Especially about the teachers/people who inspired you to write. Good thread, Leonidas. I think it's so cool to see productive/ambitious teenagers.

As a sustitute/certified English teacher, it's so easy to get depressed by the students that JUST DON'T CARE. But every once in a while, I see a student who really lights up when learning about writing/reading/literary stuff, and it gives me hope that maybe, one day I'll get through to all those that JUST DON'T CARE. This is a lovely, lovely thread.

Sommer Leigh
Posts: 1624
Joined: April 2nd, 2010, 11:07 pm
Location: Omaha, NE

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by Sommer Leigh » September 1st, 2010, 1:04 pm

Leonidas wrote:Interesting that there's more college students here than high school students, though I expected as much. I know that I only started to seriously consider writing to be published eventually last year, and that I have a long way to go, but I thought there might have been one or two other writers here who were still teens.

Sommer, I don't normally read YA Contemporary, but that book sounds intriguing and I'm loving that blog so far. Thanks for linking me to it!

Also, yeah, giving up time for other things it about the only way I think anyone gets any writing done. Oddly enough, I get more writing done when I'm busier, so the summer is always a bit of a dry period for me, writing-wise. I'm working to change that, of course, but I'm looking forward to the two hours I allot myself every day during the school year to write as being highly productive. xD

You're welcome! The book is very good, but I am most impressed that she's a successful writer and still a teenager. It can be done!
May the word counts be ever in your favor. http://www.sommerleigh.com
Be nice, or I get out the Tesla cannon.

User avatar
Posts: 9
Joined: March 14th, 2010, 10:10 pm

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by emvtc » September 1st, 2010, 5:58 pm

Hola, teenage writer - sophomore in hs. Awesome thread :D Started writing when I was 12. Have since then written about a dozen novels. All of them suck. I am proud of this. I am not afraid to suck. When you suck it means you can only get better. Hopefully, I am getting better, haha. Couple of writer's conferences... Boy, I like to talk about myself too much. But again, awesome thread! Kudos.

And I encourage any and all teenage writers to maybe submit things to the Capitol City Young Writer's literary journal that's starting up!

So the literary journal is about helping young writers see their work in print. It's a fantastic group. I've personally met the literary agent who runs it and she's awesome. The journal will be choosing a sort of "theme" but all genres of writing are accepted. Poetry to Narrative Non-fiction. Does not matter. We'd loooooove to see some submissions.

Here are some guidelines:
Short Fiction: Maximum 1,500 words
Poetry: Maximum two typed pages, both traditional and free verse accepted. No senseless profanity.
Book/Novel Excerpt: Maximum one small chapter, or 3,000 words
Interview: Include a 400-word introduction to the subject, followed by maximum 2,000 words in a question-and-answer format.
• How to send the submission: “Please double-space, with one-inch margins on all sides. Do not use headers or footers. Email using a Microsoft Word attached document”

The deadline for submissions will be January 31, 2011.

* Submissions will be accepted by email only to submissions@capitolcityyoungwriters.org.
Submissions will be logged and distributed to the appropriate journal staff by volunteer Dee Ambrose-Stahl.

If I missed anything (sorry!) then go to http://www.capitolcityyoungwriters.com/ for more information.
I want to unfold. I don't want to be folded anywhere, because there, where I'm folded, I am a lie.

User avatar
Posts: 250
Joined: March 16th, 2010, 10:15 am
Location: South Carolina

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by oldhousejunkie » September 2nd, 2010, 6:47 pm

I started writing when I was in elementary school. As time progresses, I got busier. It's been 10 years since I graduated high school, and the only time I was too stressed to write was my senior year.

I really ramped up my writing in college. I worked part-time, but I always found time for writing. Maybe going to school in such a beautiful and historic city (Charleston, SC) provided the inspiration that I needed. But...one MS that I started in college was just finished earlier this year. My other WIP was started in college as well, and it's still...a WIP. Of course, I don't pencil in time to write everyday. When I feel forced, my writing is forced. So I generally wait for the muses to descend. Which would explain the nearly 9 years it has taken to finish my MS.

Take it easy on yourself. You'll know instinctively when to lay off of your writing to pursue your studies and vice versa. Good luck to you.

Posts: 61
Joined: December 14th, 2009, 11:51 pm
Location: Somewhere in 19th century England

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by ladymarella » September 3rd, 2010, 6:32 pm

I'm sixteen and have been writing my novel seriously since I was fourteen. At the moment I'm getting a fair bit done, but with the amount of school work (I'm in Year 11, second last year of school here in Australia) it is slower than I would like.
Probably not a good bit of advice to follow, but last year, I found I got most of my writing done at school during science and geography. Still managed to pass though.
My friends are really good and we are all very arty in one form or another. But I mainly discuss my work with my best friend who is a very harsh critic and great for coming up with ideas.
Currently composing a sprawling family saga set in 19th century England
The world may be divided into people that read, people that write, people that think, and fox-hunters.'- William Shenstone,

Posts: 2
Joined: September 4th, 2010, 3:30 am

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by blue » September 4th, 2010, 3:35 am

I'm a teenager. I've been writing ever since I can remember. I write in my journal every day - about 1,000 words or so. It helps with developing my voice. But I don't always get time to work on my WIP. It's gonna take a while to finish.
Last edited by blue on October 2nd, 2010, 4:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 4
Joined: September 3rd, 2010, 10:27 pm

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by tinsoldier » September 4th, 2010, 9:29 pm

Not really a teenager any more (yay 20!!!), but....horrible habit to promote, but I used to write when we were supposed to be taking notes, heh. Brainstormed some of my best ideas during world cultures lectures. :) The teacher would start talking and I would think "Oooh, that's cool, what if THIS happened..." and then my brain would be out the window for the rest of the hour.

User avatar
Posts: 349
Joined: December 7th, 2009, 4:49 pm
Location: Northern California

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by maybegenius » September 6th, 2010, 6:24 pm

Are any of our teen writers on inkpop? It's a great site for teen writers. You post your work and critique the work of others.

Unfortunately it's not perfect... there are a number of people that will only read/comment/pick your work if you "return the favor," which is a bummer. But still, it's a great community.
aka S.E. Sinkhorn, or Steph

My Blog | My Twitter | YA!Flash Tumblr

Represented by Michelle Andelman of Regal Literary

Posts: 9
Joined: February 2nd, 2011, 1:47 pm
Location: typing my location

Re: Teenage Writers?

Post by ShadowFlame » March 20th, 2011, 1:52 pm

im not a teenage writer im a preteen writer
WIP 1-On 2nd draft
WIP 2-On first Draft
Wip 3-On first draft

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 11 guests