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  • Writer's pictureJennifer Jenkins

Teen Writer's Guide: A Road Map to Writing

Updated: Nov 27, 2018

I've found that every book I write has a different source of inspiration. Sometimes it's the idea for a character, at other times, a unique plot conflict. The inspiration behind my first non-fiction title developed about ten years ago when my writers group and I decided to combine our love of teaching teenagers with our love of writing.

Writers Cubed, Inc. (left to right): Lois D. Brown, Tahsha Wilson, yours truly, Jo Schaffer, Margie Jordan

Fast-forward a decade and we're a federal 501c3 non-profit committed to working with schools to save creative writing. Our Teen Author Boot Camp conference attracts nearly 1,000 teens every spring and is one of the largest teen-only writing conferences in the nation.

(Not the final cover)

Teen Writer’s Guide: A Road Map to Writing is a teen-targeted writing guide for kids ages 13 and up, with strong appeal as a classroom manual for middle and high school creative writing classes. It's packed with humor and modern examples of stories with which teens will relate.

Why the "Road Map" theme?

It might surprise you to learn that I moved eighteen times before I turned sixteen years old. Some of those moves were the product of industrious parents who liked to flip houses, the rest of the moves were due to my military upbringing. My dad was a decorated fighter pilot, and it was rare that I ever stayed in one school for an entire school year.

I don't really have memories of any one house in my childhood, but I do remember the cars we drove, considering the long stretches of time I spent in them moving from Florida to Utah to New Hampshire to New Mexico to Texas to Alabama, etc...

Each chapter in Teen Writers Guide: Road Map to Writing opens with a story from my childhood road trip experiences and introduces the subject matter of each chapter, providing a thematic framework for the book through which beginning writers can launch their creative writing journey. “Travel Log Notes” provide additional advice and commentary, “Hit the Road” sections offer writing exercises for a practical, hands-on approach to building skills and encouraging writing practice, and teachers and librarians will appreciate the charts with Common Core standards that correlate with each topic.

I'm beyond excited to share this resource with young writers. I'm convinced teens have an important voice and that learning to express themselves at a young age will provide them with greater emotional health and opportunities to succeed in the future.

I can't wait to share this book with the world in Spring 2020 and thrilled to be working with Owl Hollow Press on the project!


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