Tagged: writing

kitty

Sensitivity and the Writer

I’m a delicate little flower. People tend to laugh when I say this, but it’s true! I am a very sensitive person. I think people tend to laugh because sensitivity is all-too-often confused with weakness. But I am definitely NOT a weak person. I am someone who feels deeply. Sometimes I might struggle with expressing those feelings in a way that others can understand. Sometimes deep...

characters

Creating anomalous characters

Empathy is a valuable skill as a writer. Being able to put yourself in someone else’s position to get an idea of how and why they might think or feel about something is important when you are creating characters that might be different to yourself. But what about when it comes to understanding what motivates a person to do something that you yourself would or...

grammar2

The trouble with grammar

  ‘Intelligence supersedes grammar… Grammar is secondary to content… Language is changing anyway so grammar doesn’t really matter…’ These are some of the statements I (over)heard during the week at a conference I attended for PhD researchers. These candidates were were having informal discussions about their work and their personal processes in writing up their research. As a writer, I was astounded. But as someone...

writer

How important is reading to you?

“Not every reader writes, but every writer reads.”  Attribution: Every writer I know (worth their salt). It’s an important statement for a lot of reasons. A writer needs to be very familiar with the genre in which they write, as well as have a comprehensive understanding of the demographic for whom they write. How else can they do this, except by reading? I know a...

power

The Incredible Power of Writing

I sat down to write about the amazing transformation I’m seeing in some of the kids I work with in my Writers’ Groups. Then I remembered I’ve written this type of post before. Rather than link back to the original post, I’m going to repost it below.  The kids I’m referring to today are a mixed bag of young teens. They were from different schools, different...

sadgirlwriting

When Writing Becomes Destructive

  This week I’ve had the (dis)pleasure of supervising the NAPLAN tests in a primary school I teach in sometimes.  Yep, it’s that time of year again. Standardised testing. A process where some bright spark who has probably never set foot in a school, thinks it’s a good idea for every student in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9, to sit the same exam at...

good keys

Write Change

I’m about to change everything about the way I run my writers’ groups. Everything! I’ve written a lot about writing on this blog. But I keep coming back to my observations about how writing develops in young people. As a writer who teaches writing I am acutely aware of how kids learn to write, what they write as well as when and how they write. And I...

risk

Writing and Risk Taking

I’ve just completed the first draft of my third novel. You’d think it would be cause for celebration, wouldn’t you? After all, I’ve been working on the manuscript for just over a year. Actually, about fourteen months. Fourteen months, one week and three days, precisely. That’s fourteen months, one week and three days with tangential voices in my head. And they didn’t always wait patiently...

ipad-n-books

Teaching, writing, fear, and children.

I love teaching writing to children and young adults. There is something incredibly powerful about encouraging a young person to enhance their communication skills. There is a lot of concern among teachers at the moment about the future of writing. These kinds of discussions seem to come up at the beginning at every school year, and as our school year (here in Australia) has just...

keep-calm-and-enjoy-writing-your-story-1

Academia versus Creativity

Something concerning is happening about the way in which young people are pressured to view writing. Writing and reading are intrinsically linked—they always have been. It’s a well-known fact that the more you read, the better you write. But the way in which young people are reading is changing, and though this is not necessarily a bad thing overall, it is having an unexpected effect...