Teen Read Week, What To Write for NaNoWriMo, and Cupcakes…

By Posted in - On Writing on October 19th, 2010 1 Comments

Today I’m guest posting for Teen Read Week over at the super-popular Reading Teen blog with one of my recent rants on books for boys.

Am I flattered to have been asked? Absolutely. Though I’m feeling a mite vulnerable as the tone of the post they chose is rather pugnacious. It’s one thing to witter on about things within the more intimate circle of my regular blog followers, but Reading Teen has over 1,500 readers and I certainly can’t expect them all to agree with me. Feathers will be ruffled. But I also can’t change the way I feel about books for boys. And that’s the point I want to make here today…

As we inch closer to the start of National Novel Writing Month many of you are worrying about what to write.

Which of the many ideas swirling in your fertile mind is The One? The one that’s worth writing in a white hot rush during November, and worth editing over and over and over again until it shines? Which one is worth an agent’s time to read? And worth their time to sell? And worth an editor’s reputation to publish?

Have I induced a cold sweat yet?

I hope not, because the answer is actually very simple. Write the one you truly believe in. Write the one that takes risks. The one that says something not everyone will agree with but which you can wholeheartedly campaign for during the years it takes for a book to make it to the bookstore shelves. Because it opens up a debate. It gets people talking about things that matter.

I’m not talking about writing a documentary, or a preachy novel. I’m talking about the best form of entertainment there is—an idea-fest of a story with characters who are driven to risk everything for their goals, their beliefs, and the people they love. No more anemic, limp-wristed post-modernism. Give me Romantic with a capital R. Give me a rollicking adventure. Create a revolution in your chosen genre. Change my fixed perceptions. Create an argument that will keep me debating the rights and wrongs and meaning of your story for years to come.

Aim big, fly high, write from a place of passion. If you do that, you’ll have no trouble reaching 50,000 words in one month.

Further Resources:

Join the NaNoWriMo Warriors for support, word wars, live group chats, shared links, tips and fun throughout November on Facebook’s new Groups page at: NaNoWriMo Warriors!

Teen Read Week Links:

…oh, and the cupcakes? Sorry, I got the munchies while I was trying to think of a title and cupcakes sprang to mind so…


here’s a photograph of the most beautiful cupcake I could find to make you happy…


(1) awesome folk have had something to say...

  • Rachna Chhabria - Reply

    October 18, 2010 at 8:39 pm

    Lia..I agree with you that we must choose the story we truly believe in, write about characters we feel passionate about, characters who are willing to take risks and stories that take risks too. Both the story and the characters should first and foremost challenge us (the writer). These characters and stories will surely intrigue the readers. These stories will be discussed for years to come. Another point I agree is that stories are the best form of entertainment.

    All the best for NaNoWriMo. 🙂

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