Encouraging the next generation of Kansas writers

A few weeks ago, Mrs. Jenkins, a teacher at Ottawa High School, invited me to speak to her class about what it means to be a writer. Completely flattered, I said yes and then spent the next few weeks wondering what I would say. Luckily for me, Mrs. Jenkins’ class developed a fantastic series of questions. Some of my favorites:

  • What is your favorite piece of work you have written?
  • How long would you say it takes to write a book?
  • Do you wish to become a professional writer like James Patterson, or is it just a hobby?
  • Is anyone in your family not supportive of you being a writer?
  • When did you decide to become a writer? Why?

These questions really got me thinking about the writing process and reminded me why I love writing. Even on the days when I delete twenty pages because I realize the story is moving in the wrong direction. Especially on the days when I figure out which direction the story should go.

So, just for fun, here’s the presentation I put together so we all have something to stare at in the event that I can’t remember what I was going to say.

Writing Presentation – Ottawa High School

We’ll have a good time. I hope. At least, I hope no one falls asleep.

5 thoughts on “Encouraging the next generation of Kansas writers

  1. Fred Miller

    I like the question about family not being supportive. Some of my family are. But others have given up discouraging me and just ignore me. It’s better this way.

    Writers actually need discouragment. Seriously. How else are you going to know whether you are a writer or not? A writer, painter, sculptor, we will do it no matter who says what. No one can stop you. That’s how you know what you are.


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