When her father begins having conversations with dead relatives, photographer Amina Eapen returns to her parents’ home in Albequerque, and a past she has been running from. Confronted with memories of a childhood visit to India and the tragedy that resulted, and of the brother nobody talks about, Amina wants nothing more than to get back to Seattle and resume her career crisis. But like the unsettling images she captures on film and then hides away,
Teen writers are a diverse bunch. Not all of them even know they are writers. I’ve met all of the following writers in my programs, and I’ve seen the light go on in their eyes when they come to own their writing.
When I can’t write, I go into withdrawal. I live in my room with my characters, emerging occasionally for a sandwich.
Six weeks ago I made the wildly improbable promise to give twenty hours a week to my verse-novel. Between writing classes, French classes, and subbing grades K-12, my life is already packed to the rafters. But I decided that if Varian Johnson could write at 4:00 in the morning and finish multiple books while working fulltime as an engineer (my agent tipped me off), so could I (well, except for the engineering bit.)
I’m missing a lot of Facebook posts,
I love those “aha!” moments when a character sneaks up on me–and I suddenly realize I’m not writing the book I thought I was writing. It might mean big changes, but it invariably makes a deeper and more authentic story than the one I started with. This is just as true for memoir as it is for fiction
As I prepare for my fall writing classes, “Writing the Hidden Story”
One of the cool things about taking teen writing at Bellevue College, is working with a published author. Lois Brandt (who is certifiably awesome) teaches Writing Short Stories in the Teenage Novelist program. Students rave about her classes, which have included the “Write a Novel in 30 Days” class she usually teaches in November (to go along with NaNoWriMo) and “Editing Your Manuscript.”
To see Jim Hall’s take on his poem, as well as the entire poem printed out, go here.
Another game to try! Do one OR MORE of the following:
Twelve and a half weeks ago I loaned my best friend a set of “Cooking with Salt” DVDs, which were a gift from my former best friend. I have asked her every week if she is done with them. Seven weeks ago, my boyfriend began cooking everything with salt. He said he was experimenting. Five weeks ago, while searching my best friend’s apartment for my DVD set,
You speak in riddles because
You ache to speak.
You ache for space
To expand and contract.
You cast your words into the chasm,
To be caught by one
Whose breathing holds your breath.
When your foot finds the brink
You ask the air
You’ll have Doctor Who for homework!!!
Here’s what I’m offering at Bellevue College in the Spring (Registration probably begins in March):
Geek Fiction Writing
This course analyzes popular sci-fi, fantasy, superhero and dystopian screen favorites to discover what makes them tick. Then we use these tools of excellent storytelling in our own original fiction. This is a step beyond fanfic, as you’ll create characters and worlds that are wholly your own.
This is a course description for a poetry class I hope to offer this summer at Bellevue College.
Teen Poet: Dancing on the Razor’s Edge
Poetry is dangerous. The instructor urges extreme caution. Bring paper, pens and words (caged if necessary). Hear the work of young poets, published and unpublished and then let your own words out. Cut through the steel bars and let loose what you really want to say.