Monday, February 14, 2011

the valentine's lens

So, among the interactions on the comments' pages of the recent posts, I talked a little about the group of young writers I've been working with.

I also mention them a little bit in an interview that was just published on a blog called Lady Reader's Bookstuff (linked below).

So I'm asking the kids to submit to being the subjects of a web-documentary about what they do and what they think about writing. I'm sure they'll have some interesting -- and possibly surprising -- things to say. And it will undoubtedly shock a lot of YA phonies out there to see that there are just as many boys in the group as there are girls. [YA phonies adhere to the unwavering philosophy that "Young Adult" equals "girl," especially as it pertains to reading, plot line, and writing]

Anyway, this should be cool. Give us a couple weeks or so to get it filmed and edited.

I'll tell you a few things about what we do and don't do in the group.

First off, we don't censor. This means that the kids write about whatever they want to write about. Sometimes, they'll even say shit. I can't remember if any of them said fuck yet. Oh, wait... they're teenagers.

Of course they have.

What was I thinking?

Every time we meet, the kids read a couple pages from what they're working on. Sometimes, it's poetry, but it's most often prose (short stories and novels).

At first, most of the kids were shy about reading their own stuff out loud, but they got over that really fast. I think, for the most part, they really enjoy reading to their peers.

After each kid reads, we make comments about what works or what needs to be clarified -- sometimes we suggest fixes. You'll see.

You know what we don't do?

Read stuff that I write.

I'm really jealous, too, because I wish I had a group of fellow writers like these kids do. But, oh well...

I'll talk more about them in future posts.

Also, coming up this week, I believe I have an interview on Matthew Rush's very cool blog for writers. He and his readers asked some different, not-too-expected kinds of questions.

And here is a link to a brand-new interview I did at Lady Reader's Bookstuff.