What age group is the TeenSpeak Novel Workshop for?
Generally, ages 13–19. If you’re an especially mature 12-year-old who wants to enroll, inquire. Teens may participate in the TeenSpeak activities, and/or in sessions primarily for adults.
Our event offers a multi-age experience. It’s not always necessary or even ideal to compartmentalize learning by age alone. Isn’t it interesting, for example, that different generations can enjoy the same book or movie—and discuss it together, each with varying perspectives?
It is said that the best teachers learn from their students. Similarly, multi-age learners may contribute to each other’s growth.
What’s the scoop on TeenSpeak Novel Workshop?
It’s unique! TeenSpeak’s parent program, the Pacific Coast Children’s Writers Workshop (PCCWW; founded in 2003), has received recognition from the University of California Literature Department and from adult participants. More interesting to you, book-hungry teens started enrolling in PCCWW.
In 2009, the first TeenSpeak Novel Workshop was launched. Unlike most writers’ events, TeenSpeak offers an intergenerational format. Adults write for teens, so why shouldn’t teens give them feedback on teen novels... and share the excitement of interacting with a New York editor and agent?
Now you, teen readers and/or writers, have your own concurrent workshop, with lodging and activities just for teens. Come enjoy the best of both worlds!
How intense is the writing aspect of this program?
It’s intensely engaging—learning steeped in fun.
I. BOOKWORM’S NOOK
I love novels and movies, but I’m not much of a writer. What will I do during writing sessions?
You won’t be required to write and/or share your writing. Feel free to change your mind, though!
Writing sessions will be a combination of listening, talking, reading, and writing. When time is given for writing, you might discuss favorite novels with a small group—or tell an interesting true story to one or two friends, using our guidelines.
If you don’t contribute writing to share, you may contribute valuable feedback. Remember, writers need readers! That’s true of beginners as well as of highly accomplished authors.
II. WRITER’S CORNER
I write mostly bits and pieces, and I’m just thinking about writing a novel. So I might not have anything to share at the workshop. Should I enroll now, or wait until I’m more advanced?
Don’t wait! You needn’t be a bestselling author to enjoy our writing and brainstorming sessions. We’ll give you tips and tools... and companions to enjoy them.
What are workshop critiques? I’m not sure I want to put myself out there.
“Critiques” sounds way too serious. Consider it supportive feedback. Everyone is a bit shy about sharing their writing, no matter how experienced they are. So, empower yourself by taking the plunge—submit some writing for peer and faculty feedback. Then leave our event proud of your writing accomplishments, inspired with stimulating new ideas.
Don’t expect your writing to be perfect. Nobody’s is! Certainly not before it’s published. At any stage, it’s exciting to have “fresh eyes” tell you what your words mean to new readers.
So, come explore your ideas, feelings, and observations. Our workshop is a fun adventure—a chance to share what you love with others who, like you, are passionate about words and STORIES.