Young High School Writer

by Allison
(New York (Upstate))

Question: So I'm in high school (very obviously) and I'm very interested in writing. I've read some tips about how I should take classes, but I'm a little, eh, confused about what classes I should take to learn about the fictional style I love to write. Any ideal classes that, if given the chance, I should seize?


Answer: Oh my gosh, there are so many people teaching writing courses, online and off, and a lot of good advice available for free online, not to mention books, magazines, etc. Your local library may be able to direct you to good resources.

It does help to know what you want to get out of a writing course. Some classes are all about giving information. Others are all about giving personalized feedback on your writing. Some are geared to raw beginners, others to published pros.
You might start by looking for courses or workshops aimed at your age group - as long as they are taught by qualified writers. Some school boards have special programs too on writing.

Teen Ink magazine has a list of summer programs in writing for teens ...

http://www.teenink.com/Summer/

Here's another page that lists ones in New York state...

http://www.mysummercamps.com/camps/new-york-creative-writing-camps.html

(I'm not recommending these camps. You have to check them out yourself.)

Since you have a particular style or genre in mind, you might see if there's a reputable organization for that genre with a branch in your area. For example, RWA for romance, SCWBI for children's, etc. Local members may be able to recommend good courses in your area. If you want more of the "information" type of learning, these groups often sponsor workshops by published writers that are quite valuable. Granted, you might find yourself in with a bunch of adults, but you can always talk a parent into going with you.

You might also check out the various continuing education courses offered by local colleges. See if they are open to teens. If so, check out the instructors. Look at their published works, articles on writing, websites, etc. Look for someone you think has things to teach you.

Sometimes too there are writing circles offered in places such as public libraries. How good they are depends on who participates, so you might need to shop around.

Click here to post comments

Join in and submit your own question/topic! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Questions About Novel Writing.


 Step-by-Step Novel Planning Workbook


NEW! Make Money Writing Nonfiction Articles


"I've read more than fifty books on writing, writing novels, etc., but your website has the most useful and practical guidance. Now that I understand how a novel is structured, I will rewrite mine, confident that it will be a more interesting novel." - Lloyd Edwards



"Thanks to your "Create a Plot Outline in 8 Easy Steps," I was able to take a story that I simply just fooled around with and went willy nilly all over, into a clearly defined, intriguing battle where two characters fight to keep their relationship intact, and try to find a balance in control of themselves and their lives. Thanks to you, I'm not ashamed of the poor organization of my writing." - Nommanic Ragus

"I am so glad I found your site. It has helped me in so many ways, and has given me more confidence about myself and my work. Thank you for making this valuable resource, for me and my fellow writers. Perhaps you'll hear about me someday...I'll owe it to you." - Ruth, Milton, U.S.A.

"I never knew what to do with all the characters in my head, but since discovering Dramatica I am writing again in my spare time. Thank you for making this available. Yes, it is a bit complex, and it does take time, but I love it because it works." - Colin Shoeman

"I came across your website by chance. It is a plethora of knowledge, written in a simplistic way to help aspiring writers. I truly appreciate all of the information you have provided to help me successfully (relative term) write my novel. Thank you very much!" - Leo T. Rollins

"I can honestly say that this is the first website that is really helpful. You manage to answer complex questions in relatively short articles and with really intelligent answers. Thank you for taking the time to write these articles and sharing them so generously." - Chrystelle Nash

"...had no idea that a simple click would give me such a wealth of valuable information. The site not only offered extremely clear and helpful instructions but was a very enjoyable read as well. The education from your wonderful site has made me a better writer and your words have inspired me to get back to work on my novel. I wish to give you a heartfelt thanks for How to Write a Book Now, sir." -- Mike Chiero