Oct 03

Looks can be ...

Note: Photo actually taken by semacdonald, ywp community leader.

I am in such a good mood. Light is good. Air is brisk. By myself, camera in hand, I walk through an unexplored area of woods several miles from my home. It feels good. It is magical.

I take this photograph off the trail a bit, right on the edge of an embankment. I wait for the light to be just right and take three frames. Then I start to turn away. That's when I hear it. It comes from deep below the water. Or so it seems. I turn back. The water has ripples, the algae bounces. Then it settles. I start to turn again and, again, I hear a deep low noise, a combination of a low, dull thump and a moan. Again the water ripples, though this time the ripples are more pronounced. I back up. Onto the bank. And watch.
Sep 29

Fall Conference TODAY!

Sep 28

I write

I write.

Because I have something to say.

A story.

A detail.

A worry.

A question.

Something I've noticed.

Something I've felt.

Something that worries me.

An idea, a character, a problem.

And when I don't write.

I grow confused.

I grow anxious.

I stop noticing.

I stop imagining.

I stop.

Sep 28

NE Young Writers Conference Applications due Oct. 10

Interested in an intensive writing conference? Check out the New England Young Writers Conference. Some of the YWP community members have attended in the past and perhaps can comment here. 

Deadline for Application is Oct. 10, 2017.   The conference takes place at Breadloaf at Middlebury College May 17-20, 2018.

Here's the link: http://sites.middlebury.edu/neywc/how-to-apply/admissions-information/ 

Here's the info on that link:
The 2018 Conference fee is $375.00 per student which covers the cost of the conference as well as meals and housing for students during the conference.
Sep 27

Grammar Resources

People are more likely to hold onto grammar rules if they learned them in a fun, easy to comprehend way. Here are some fun and creative grammar resources.


The Yuniversity 
This website is a treasure trove. It has grammar rules covering punctuation, syntax, spelling, and more. They even have essay writing resources. Plus, they post SAT words everyday with easy to comprehend definitions and examples. The Yuniversity is extremely EASY to learn from and navigate — plus, each of their posts have weird and wacky animations, pictures, or even (gasp) memes to help people understand these writing rules in a fun way. 

Khan Academy
Sep 27

Editing Process

Editing and revising a piece can be one of the hardest parts of writing. Yet, it is one of the most important stages of writing. Here is a suggested process to help you organize yourself when editing. 

1. Read your piece to yourself to find big problems. 
       When editing, let yourself be the first set of eyes. ONLY look at big picture items. Things such as topic/theme consistency, relevancy, clarity, voice, tone, imagery, order, message, and length are often looked at in this stage. If you are writing a narrative, or if you have a person in your story, you'll often consider the person's voice or character consistency throughout. 
       This is the point where you will often cut sentences or paragraphs, change the order, rewrite entire sections of your piece, or change your wording to make your piece more clear. BIG things are happening.

2. Give your piece to a friend for feedback. 
Sep 27

Basic Grammar: Punctuation

Most people avoid learning about grammar like it's a 2:00 pm test on a Friday. Yet, grammar is not only important for making your work polished and professional, but it's important in terms of comprehension as well. Here are five basic punctuation marks that you should master (not all the rules are here, but these are the biggies):

Commenting - Longer Version

Commenting -- or exchanging feedback -- is an important part of the Young Writers Project community. This is where you can learn the strengths and flaws of your work or where you can get some affirmation. The exchange of feedback builds community and it's a motivation for you. We all like to get a little feedback; it helps us keep going. HINT: You are more likely to get a comment if you give a comment to someone else on their post.

Sep 27

Basic Recording Tips

When recording someone, or yourself, there are a few tips that will make your experience go that much smoother.

Smartphone. Yes, they have come a long way baby. Most smartphones now have very strong recording capabilities. Whatever app you prefer make sure it gives you some flexibility -- quality of recording and file format. If possible, choose the highest quality and .wav format so you are saving the most material. The tricky part, always, is how you get the recording into your laptop or desktop for further editing. So do check out and test various apps. (For iPhone users, iTalk is fine and we love Voice Record Pro ($6.99) which has enormous flexibility for recording quality and formats as well as sending, sharing and integrating with other apps.)
Sep 27


Presenting can be scary. Whether you are giving a speech, doing stand-up, or reading a creative writing piece you wrote, it can be nerve-wracking. Almost everyone gets stage fright, even actors. But, knowing some helpful tips can get you through your presentation, and help you deliver it with a greater sense of confidence.