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.

"It's All Write!" Contest Guidelines are now posted!

Teen writers interested in entering the "It's All Write!" Teen Short Story Contest may now view the 2015 Guidelines! The guidelines have all of the most important information about submitting to the contest.

The "It's All Write!" Teen Short Story Contest has now been running for 23 years! Last year received the largest number of submissions at 358 stories. Teens all over Ann Arbor, Michigan, and even across the world choose to participate each year.

"It's All Write!" will begin accepting submissions on Tuesday, January 27. For more information about the contest, please visit the contest homepage: http://www.aadl.org/events/itsallwrite

Happy writing!

Pete the Cat Fanmail and Puppet-making!

Are you a fan of Pete the Cat? With his groovy blue color and cool style, how could you not be?! Join us on Monday, December 22 at Traverwood from 2:00 to 3:30pm to make a Pete the Cat puppet and write letters to Eric Litwin and James Dean, the author and illustrator of the popular children's series. This event is intended for kids in grades K-5. All supplies will be provided!

Colorful Behind-the-Scenes Peek at Illustrating Children’s Books

Lois Ehlert, the well-known children’s book author and illustrator, has recently released The Scraps Book: Notes from a Colorful Life, an illustrated autobiography giving us a sneak peek into her creative process. Ehlert, whose picture books include Growing Vegetable Soup, Eating the Alphabet, and Planting a Rainbow, is known for her collage style, which mixes colored paper with everyday objects like leaves, plastic lids and even vegetables! Fans of Ehlert’s books will enjoy not only learning the stories behind some of her well-known illustrations but also hearing stories of Ehlert’s childhood and her encouraging words to future artists.

Looking for more fantastic picture-book biographies? Also check out these titles:

Balloons Over Broadway chronicles the life of Tony Sarg, the man who created the first balloons for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

What to do about Alice? offers an energetic and insightful story about Teddy Roosevelt's oldest daughter Alice Roosevelt Longworth.

The Tree Lady tells the story of Kate Sessions, a turn-of-the-century schoolteacher who started a movement to plant trees throughout San Diego.

Webcomics Lab: Making Webcomics - Brad Guigar

Tuesday January 27, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Malletts Creek Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 9 and up.

Got an idea for a webcomic but don't know where to start? Having trouble finding the time to put into that comics project? Or maybe you just want a break from creating alone in your studio (or the coffee shop) and wish you could work along side of your fellow comics creators? Come to the monthly Webcomics Lab at AADL, where you can make your comics in the company of other cartoonists. Work you finish during the Lab can be submitted for inclusion on the new AADL Webcomics Page!

This month Brad Guigar co-author of How to Make Webcomics, will be our special guest via Skype. Brad has been working on webcomics for over a decade now, starting with Greystone Inn and eventually spinning that off into Evil Inc. He’s been a very active voice in webcomics, working as the editor-in-chief for Webcomics.com, author of The Webcomics Handbook (follow-up to How to Make Webcomics), and one of the hosts for the Webcomics Weekly podcast.

Emerging Writers: Writing & Review Meetup

Thursday March 19, 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 Yang 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 for fiction and non-fiction writing.

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