Wednesday, June 12, 2013

My tips for Teen Writers

A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to host a writing workshop for teens. As someone who always loved writing, it was amazing to be able to share some tips with teens who loved writing too. They even had me sign their notebooks afterwards.

Anyway, here are the tips me and authors Katie Kacvinsky and Bryan Bliss shared with teens about inspiring your muse.

1. Use music to get you in the mood. Have a specific song for a scene you're writing or for each character to get you in their head. (Katie)

2. Use movies to help with setting. Never been to Las Vegas? Watch the hangover. (Bryan)

3. Use Google Image Search or postcards for writing prompts. (Me)

4. Write for a set interval without stopping- for anything. Don't worry about spelling or punctuation, just get words down. (Me)

5. Figure out what kind of music your characters are into. It will help you shape the kind of people they are. (Katie)

6. Think about your story like a movie. It has three acts. It starts and then something happens that changes everything and forces your character into action. Action continues to climax and finally resolution. Try to think of favorite movies this way. What are the three acts of Star Wars? (Bryan)

We all had a great time and the teens were super excited to get some insider tips from published authors. What are your favorite ways to inspire your muse?


  1. Okay so I know this is weird but I always exercise right before writing even if its just a handful of push ups or jumping jacks. It gives me this great big boost of energy and suddenly I have so much I want to write. I also feel like it helps me to generate new ideas. I love writing to music!! And if you think music is too distracting try classical or instrumental so that there aren't any lyrics. I also do random writing prompts sometimes before working on a project. That way I get out all the awkward writing out of me and get into full on writing mode. Awesome article!


  2. awesome tips, will be applying them to my writing. Especially the music, I need to get better at letting music set the tone.

  3. Great points! I'm the same, images get me really inspired as well, as does music. I try to look at art as well, there's lots of inspiration in creativity. There's also great stuff on Tumblr to get your imagination going, especially new inventions, photography, and quotes. Thanks for sharing :)