Inkpop Blog

Write, Read, Connect

Teens Being Published!

Posted by inkpopbecki on February 11, 2011

Meet Destiny Divine Reed. Destiny Divine Reed is a fifteen-year-old and recently had her dream realized, she has been published! Her work appears in the new paperback edition of The Amanda Project–a HarperTeen novel currently in stores. How did she she do it?  Read the interview or check out The Amanda Project to find out how you could get your writing in the next book in The Amanda Project series.

1.) Have you always known you wanted to be a writer?
Well, I have always loved to write, and to read.  I can’t say that I remember exactly when I decided I wanted to write,

not just for myself, but for others as well, yet I do know that it was definitely by fifth grade.  That was when I first attempted to get published by submitting work to the Annual Mark Twain Young Author’s writing workshop.  It is an AMAZING program in Hannibal that gives students all across the US a chance to grow in their writing.  It wasn’t until my eighth grade year, however, that my work was actually chosen and I was allowed to participate in the wonderful week-long program that really helped me mature as a writer.

2.) How did you discover The Amanda Project?
The very same year I got to participate in the workshop down in Hannibal, I was fortunate enough to meet a very talented Communication Arts teacher.  Wendy Lewkowicz is a published author herself and did an excellent job in assisting my growth as a writer.  She brought to my attention The Amanda Project and of course I had to look more into it.  I read the first book and greatly enjoyed it, not to mention how intrigued I was by the very concept it portrayed and Amanda herself!  I knew I had to become a bigger part of it, and that’s when I became a member of the website.

3.) Have you ever been a part of a fiction community before? Do you find it’s helpful for your development as a writer?
The Amanda Project website was the first fiction community I’ve been a part of and I’m very glad that I am.  It definitely helped with my development as a writer because I was able to be surrounded with other talented young authors who gave wonderful critics.  The Amanda Project is probably one of the best fiction communities out there.  It provides amazing opportunities and really supports anyone who, like me, loves the thrill of stringing words together.  I am also now a member or Inkpop!  When I was first asked to answer some questions for you guys I checked out the website.  I liked what I saw so…I joined!

4.) Who are some of the authors you admire?
Wow!  That’s definitely a tough question!  Well one of my favorite books of all-time is A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett, who also wrote another favorite of mine, The Secret Garden.  I’m a Harry Potter fan and I absolutely love The Maximum Ride series by James Patterson.  Recently I’ve read a book by Inara Scott, The Candidates, and I adored it!  I’m anxiously awaiting the release of the next book in the series, due to come out in August of this year.  And of course, Wendy Lewkowicz, one of the best teachers of all-time, with her book, The Girl Who Almost Had It All.  Yet despite all of these amazing, talented authors my favorite, and the one I find most admirable, is Alice Hoffman.  Her writing inspires me more than nearly any book I’ve ever read.  The way in which she writes speaks to me and to anyone who has never read her work, you must go to the library or the bookstore…immediately.  I’ve read many of her books straight through because I couldn’t bear to put them down.

5.) What was it like seeing your work in print in a real live store??!!
It was a pretty great feeling, definitely one of success!  It inspired me to write more because it made my dream of being published seem even more real.  Honestly, I sat down and wrote after the very first time I saw it in print!  Not to mention it was an amazing confidence booster!  It’s a great motivator when my writing isn’t exactly going so well because it just reminds me of my ultimate goal to become the published author of my very own novel.  And it was also kind of an “oh my gosh!” type thing.  I mean, even though they won’t have a clue who I am, thousands of people will read my name and my writing.  It’s great to know I’m out there somehow.

6.) Any advice to other young writers like yourself who are trying to get started?
Definitely!  First off, read, read, read!  There is nothing better to build your vocabulary and reading will show you what it takes to write, what is good writing and what is not so good.  Secondly, write as much as you can.  I have a problem with this, I will admit.  It’s tough sometimes, especially as a young student with so much going on, but you cannot grow as a writer if you don’t exercise your talent.  And NEVER, EVER throw any of your writing away, even if you hate it.  It’s also a great idea to find a friend who shares your love of writing, who will critic you and be honest, not dishing out only open-ended praise, and who will support you in your endeavors.  Miss Laura Johnson is my writing friend, or as I like to call it, my partner in writing.  I love you Laura! And lastly, remember to always, always keep faith in a Higher Power and don’t ever, ever give up.

One Response to “Teens Being Published!”

  1. By and helping us search for Amanda youll have a chance to have your own writing featured in one of our books or in the Zine were putting together.

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