"Write On!" - Let's Get Started!

Thinking about entering this year’s “Write On!” Short Story Contest for 3rd-5th grade, but not sure where to start? What are short stories supposed to be about, anyway?
Good news! That's the fun part about writing - YOU get to decide. It can be scary, funny, silly, or sad. All you need is an idea! Now... where can you find one of those?!

These short story collections should get you thinking:
Ribbiting Tales: Original Stories About Frogs
Sports Shorts: An Anthology of Short Stories
Breaking the Spell: Tales of Enchantment

For some spooky ideas, try:
That’s Ghosts for You: 13 Scary Stories
Beware! : R.L. Stine Picks His Favorite Scary Stories

To find out more about the "Write On!" Short Story Contest, check out the contest home page!

Let the "Write On!" Contest Begin!

All third, fourth, and fifth grade writers may now submit their stories to the third annual "Write On!" Short Story Contest! Just type up your story and either send it to youngwrite@aadl.org or bring it to the Youth Desk at the Downtown Branch! Story submissions will be accepted 2/9-2/27. Check out the guidelines and contest website for more information!

If writing a story straight from your head seems tough, try out a couple of these goofy story-starters to get your ideas flowing!

The only thing worse than stepping in grape jelly is...
This morning I woke up and thought, "Aw pickles."
Dragons don't make very good pets...
When I walked into science class today, I didn't expect...
Something sounded like two million cats practicing karate...

Happy writing!

Emerging Writers Workshop: Memoir Workshop with Phoebe Gloeckner

Thursday June 4, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:45 pm -- Traverwood Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 6 and up

Phoebe Gloeckner is an Associate Professor, School of Art & Design at U of M and is a graphic novelist. Her book, The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2002), was praised as "one of the most brutally honest, shocking, tender, beautiful portrayals of growing up female in America." Phoebe will speak about the unique challenge and experience of writing, and publishing, memoir. The Diary of a Teenage Girl was also adapted as a film which debuted to rave reviews at the Sundance Film Festival, in early 2015. It will be released in theaters later this year.

Emerging Writers: Writing & Review Meetup

Thursday May 21, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:45 pm -- Traverwood Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 6 and up.

This is a monthly meetup that welcomes all writers to ask questions, connect with other writers, or simply have a dedicated time and place to work on their projects.

Local authors Lara Zielin and Alex Kourvo will be on hand to offer encouragement, answer questions, and point writers to resources.

These open houses complement the Emerging Writers Workshops. These events feature perspectives from both traditional publishing and indie publishing and considerations of fiction and non-fiction writing.

Emerging Writers Workshop: Beta Readers and Beyond: How To Build Your Writing Community

Thursday May 7, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:45 pm -- Traverwood Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 6 and up

Writing is sometimes a lonely business, but it doesn’t have to be. This workshop will cover the basics of finding your literary tribe, whether online or face to face. Authors Lara Zielin and Alex Kourvo will show you how and when to share your writing, how to make deep online connections, and how to find (or start) a writer’s group that’s just right for you.

This is part of a monthly series of writing and publishing events called the Emerging Writers Workshops, featuring perspectives from both traditional publishing and indie publishing. Considerations for fiction and nonfiction writing will be covered.

There will also be an opportunity for workshop attendees to meet up at the Traverwood Branch on Thursday, May 21 to discuss their works-in-progress. Both Lara Zielin and Alex Kourvo will be on hand to offer advice, tips and review. These open houses will be a wonderful time to meet your fellow writers and potentially create your own writing group.

Emerging Writers Workshop: Finish That Book! Shaping A Plot that Moves Your Story from Initial Idea to THE END

Thursday April 2, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:45 pm -- Traverwood Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 6 and up

Whether you’re a thorough plotter with a roadmap for each chapter, or you’re a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants writer, this workshop will cover the essential elements that every novel needs. Authors Alex Kourvo and Lara Zielin will show you how to open your novel with a bang, wrap up all the plot threads at the end, and make sure your middle never sags. They will also explain how to polish your prose and avoid the traps of tired text.

This event is part of a monthly series of writing and publishing events called the Emerging Writers Workshops, featuring perspectives from both traditional publishing and indie publishing.

There will also be an opportunity for workshop attendees to meet up at the Traverwood Branch on Thursday, April 16 to discuss their works-in-progress. Both Lara Zielin and Alex Kourvo will be on hand to offer advice, tips and review. These open houses will be a wonderful time to meet your fellow writers and potentially create your own writing group.

Emerging Writers: Writing & Review Meetup

Thursday April 16, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:45 pm -- Traverwood Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 6 and up.

This is a monthly meetup that welcomes all writers to ask questions, connect with other writers, or simply have a dedicated time and place to work on their projects. Local authors Lara Zielin and Margaret Alex Kourvo will be on hand to offer encouragement, answer questions, and point writers to resources. These open houses complement the Emerging Writers Workshops. These events feature perspectives from both traditional publishing and indie publishing and considerations of fiction and non-fiction writing.

The "It's All Write!" Contest Is Now Accepting Submissions!

The 23rd "It's All Write!" Teen Short Story Contest has officially begun! Writers in grades 6-12 may enter their short story today through Friday, March 13.

Whether you are new to the contest or are a returning writer, you may find these Frequently Asked Questions helpful:

Q: Can I use a story that I've already written in class?
A: Yes, as long as it is not already published in print or online.

Q: Do I have to write about a certain topic or theme?
A: You can write about whatever you would like!

Q: How do I start writing a story?
A: The writing resources guide features several websites to help you get started.

Q: Is this contest just for Ann Arbor students?
A: The "It's All Write" contest is for any teen writer who wishes to enter, even if they live in another state or country!

Q: Who are the contest judges?
A: The judges change every year, so keep an eye on our website to find out who is on this year's panel.

For more information, please visit the contest website! Happy writing!

"Write On!" Contest Guidelines are now posted! Entries accepted February 9 - 27th!

Young writers in 3rd-5th Grade may now view the 2015 "Write On!" Short Story Contest Guidelines! The "Write On!" Short Story Contest is now three years old and has received a total of 200 submissions from previous years! Keep the stories coming, writers of Ann Arbor and beyond!

"Write On!" will begin accepting submissions on Monday, February 9.

Need some help getting started? Check out the Writing Resources page. For more information about the contest, please visit the contest home page.

Happy writing!

Laura Ingalls Wilder and Her Place in the World

Monday March 23, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grades 6 and up
This event will be recorded

Interest in Laura Ingalls Wilder is at a peak – especially with the recent publication of her autobiography Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography.

At this special AADL evening, explore the world of Laura Ingalls Wilder, whose experiences traveling and homesteading with her pioneer family spawned her series of popular children's books. Author and Wilder scholar William Anderson and University of Michigan History professor Michelle McClellan lead us on a journey through Laura's life and tell the story of how the places she lived have now taken on a life of their own.

Wilder's legacy extends far beyond her Little House series; millions know her from the 1970s television show based on her books, and the locations she wrote about, including Kansas, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Missouri, have become tourist destinations for her devoted fans.

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