WRITING FOR YOUNG ADULTS...

Once a year my writing group, The Lazy River Writers with help from the Victorian Writers Centre, hosts a writing workshop.

This year we featured writing for young adults with author Penni Russon.

Penni has over 9 novels published and teaches at Melbourne University (not to mention juggling the jobs of wife and mother to three young children). She had a wealth of experience to share, and share she did.

It was a great afternoon. Penni offered not only good advice and some great ideas to use as jumping off points for our writing - but she gave us writing exercises.

The one that most intrigued me was putting an experience - and for this exercise we used a 'first time' experience - into a haiku.

Yes a haiku.

There were no words to hide behind, no waffling, it had to be condensed and concise. A very interesting exercise and one I totally recommend.

I think what I got most from this workshop was confidence. That yes there are mountains of books out there...

-and working in a library I know there are more books out there than anyone can read
BUT....
not with the story I want to tell and in my voice.

I have written novels. A few adult ones, a few young adult ones (she says this casually, almost a throw away line). It is never easy writing a novel...but I have learnt so much from each of these that live somewhere in the bottom of the bookcase or perhaps bottom drawer of the desk (I'm not exactly sure where some of these are, if they exist anymore).

I've learnt endurance and patience, I've learnt to work with character and plot, landscape and voice....

Next lesson is not to give up.
So I'm working on a synopsis to send one of my YA novels out into the world (for the second time)

Wish me luck ....

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