Hello, everybody! It’s a cold but a pretty New Year’s as I think about what’s happening today.
- This is my first regular post on When Words Fly!! Thank you to everyone who pitched in, supported, and helped me get to this wonderful landmark. I could not have done it without you.
- Today is the first day back to school… and I’m unsure how I feel about it..? But, good news, I get to start writing classes now!
- It’s 2018! 2017 has been an eventful year full of highs and lows, but, looking back, I see how much I’ve grown and I’m thankful for it.
Actually, today we’ll be talking about something that happened last year that helped me be here today, on the first day of 2018. We’re talking about a writing community.
It surprises me how few writers have a solid, consistent community they can use, since it’s one of the most fundamental parts of getting a good start in writing. It’s not like you can’t succeed without one, but it impacts everything you write afterward because of its four greatest additions to your writing life.
I know they’re true, because I’ve experienced them. And they will change your life.
I think the word feedback scares people. It scares us…. Like, you know, in elementary school when the teacher would pass out the classes’ graded creative writing papers, and yours had red marks all over it and a barely passable grade that sent your GPA waaay down?
If you’ve got a group of people who really want to invest in you and your writing, you will never go through that again. They will want to help you, not give you a grade to despair over. Their goal should be to show you how to write better.
I came up with a quote for this one. Print it out. Tape it to your wall. It will be useful in life. Are you ready?
Good advice is better than stupid advice.
-Abby Franklin, 2018
I’m pure genius.
To be a little more precise, advice is better coming from someone who knows what they’re doing than someone speculating from the outside.
Take, for instance, making a blog for the first time. Someone with no experience could tell you to go ahead and make a blog at the beginning of your writing career, while an experienced blogger may know that you should probably do XYZ before blogging for the first time.
When you have a friend who likes baseball, you might play or go to a game with them, right? If you agree, congrats! You found out why writing friends are important! Have some cake!
Writing friends are arguably the best friends ever, because they’re crazy weird and tend to be comical people because of it. But the best thing about them is that, if you’re a writer too, they’ll always be there to keep you going. And they are very persistent & passionate about it.
Plus, If you need extra ideas, a good name for a villain, or a good cry over a character’s death, they’re only a phone call or text away.
Yeah, writers are pretty awesome. 😉
We all get into those awful writing slumps sometimes. You guys know those days when you can’t seem to get the plot together or can’t write another word, and those dry seasons where nothing good seems to be happening.
One of the best parts of having writers around you is that they understand. They get it. Maybe they have tips on how to help, and maybe they don’t. But a good writer will always encourage you to keep going in your journey.
Now, how do you find a writing community?
I know, it is daunting. When I first started writing, I wondered how I would ever find a group of young people like me that wrote as more than just a hobby. I wished for people who would give me feedback and be loving about it, people who wouldn’t make fun of me if I messed up. It seemed even more impossible since I didn’t have social media.
This is why I’d like to introduce you to the Young Writer’s Workshop!
(this post is not sponsored. i’m simply thrilled to talk about my experience with YWW!)
We are a community of teens and young men and women who love to write and dream and explore. YWW accepts any kind of writer, from the YA fiction hopeful to the screenwriter aspirant. We trade feedback. We give advice. We encourage. And we have become a giant group of great friends.
But you know what’s even better?
You aren’t only spending time with other potential writers, but you have a number of published authors behind you and willing to take you under their wing. We’re talking Jaquelle Crowe, Grace Mally, Jaye L. Knight, C.R. Hedgecock, and so many more.
I really believe in this course and what it can do. I actually did an interview several weeks ago with founder Brett Harris (who wrote Do Hard Things and founded The Rebelution!!) about how Y-Dubs has rocked my world, and as I talked, I realized just how much my world has changed from writing.
YWW is truly life-changing. I’m proof of it.
Registration opens January 26th; learn more about YWW HERE
So, that concludes the first post of my new blog! The way I wrote it is different and more serious than the posts I usually do, so, you know, tell me what you think of it!
Can I say thank-you again to the people who participated in the tour?? Thank you! And thanks also to loyal readers of 360* that put up with my freaking out about WWF for all this time. I hope it’s worth all the hype!