“I love that when I have a question, I can reach out and pick the brilliant brains of other talented kidlit writers. I’m always amazed at how quickly plot or character problems can be solved when you get out of your own head. I also love how willing people are to share great examples of kidlit to use as mentor texts.”
I first heard Emma read from a chapter-book-in-progress, and her voice blew me away. Emma’s writing as such attention to detail, such personality, such emotional resonance. She can write funny and serious–sometimes in the same sentence. Emma’s debut YA novel, DANGEROUS PLAY comes out August 3, and I’m so glad we get a peek into Emma’s brain and writing process. I highly recommend both DANGEROUS PLAY and Emma herself.
Dr. Susan McCormick: Accept the unexpected. Sometimes as a doctor, a diagnosis that had eluded me would appear in the night or while I was running or in the shower. These messages from my inner brain were always right. Similarly, accept any magic that pours from your fingers while writing, or any miracles that come while your brain is on break. These ideas from nowhere are often the best.
The authors and contributors we interviewed had so many wonderful sidewriting challenges, we thought we’d put them all in one place. Each exercise will have a link back to the original post so you can learn more about the author and how sidewriting works for them. Enjoy!
Thank you for coming along on this sidewriting journey with us. We hope you’ve found some compelling exercises AND some compelling reasons for sidewriting. Just as every writer is different, the way each writer uses sidewriting is different–as you’ve seen from our contributors.
The four years of creating that original manuscript were the hardest and most humbling of my entire career. But my journey is also a reminder that there are a lot of different paths to publication.
Learning craft will always set writers off on the strongest foot.
by Jen Jobart Here’s a first taste of our curated retrospective. First posted in December 2018, Jen’s post recommends some great listening to get your craft juices flowing. We invite you to read, and then listen. –Anne-Marie Like everyone else these days, I keep busy. I don’t currently have a paying job, but I’m the […]
commentary by Jackie Friedman Mighdoll Hey girl, You were just on Twitter and you saw someone’s happy news. A new book acquired by a great publisher! You liked the tweet—because a) you celebrate other writers and b) the book sounds super cool and you’d like to read it. But in the darkest pit of your […]
guest post by Naomi Kinsman A couple days ago, I stood in front of a third grade classroom acting out a scene between a giant and a young girl, complete with action and dialogue. Afterward, in our class discussion and in one-on-one conversations, the youth writers and I unpacked specificity of voice, gesture, subtext, tone, […]