I love teaching and sharing knowledge/talking about YA Fiction just as much as I love reading and writing it, so I'm particularly psyched that I've got a couple of upcoming opportunities to do so even though I've got a busy dayjob right now (and meanwhile, having been keeping my nose to the grindstone before and after work to finish my proposal for my zine-style essay collection!)
The first will be the AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs) Conference, which is being held in Seattle this year (perfect timing! It's like yet another present for moving here!) from Wednesday, February 26 through Saturday, March 1st. I will be on a panel on Thursday, February 27th from 10:30 am to 11:45 am with Micol Ostow, Laurel Snyder, Nova Ren Suma, and Sara Zarr in Room 618/619/620, Washington State Convention Center, Level 6!
Stellar line-up, right? I KNOW! I feel so lucky to be chatting with these brilliant woman and I think our topic is pretty damn interesting:
Commercial Literary Fiction (Not an Oxymoron): The Place of Craft in Writing and Teaching Children's and Young Adult Literature
Young Adult and Children’s literature are exciting, increasingly popular markets that many writers want to break into. How do you make your manuscript—or help make your students’ manuscripts—stand out... and sell? How does being commercial mean respecting the reader, not something crass? Five published YA and Children’s authors will present exercises they employ in their own writing, and in workshops they teach, to develop authentic voice, characters, and story worlds that editors will snap up.
Please come and see us if you are in town for AWP!
Then, I will actually be putting these teaching techniques I'm talking about into practice in Seattle this spring! I'm teaching a Young Adult Fiction Workshop at Hugo House, which begins on May 1st! This workshop will be focused on generating material and getting regular feedback from critique partners in class, though we will still talk about craft and I’ll bring exercises to the table in each class. This should be super helpful for anyone who is trying to finish or revise a draft of a YA book and it will be motivating for anyone who is just starting a draft because you’ll be encouraged to bring in up to 10 pages a week.
Because of the workshop style, this class will be capped at 10, so register ASAP! Registration is open for Hugo House members now and will open to the general public on 2/18!
I hope to meet all sorts of new writers at AWP and at Hugo House this spring!