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So You Want to Be a Writer?: Teen Writing Guide: Writing at the Library

A writing guide for teens aimed at writers of any skill level, from those who are just getting started on their writing journey to those who have been writing for some time.

We're Here to Help

Your librarians may or may not be writers, they may or may not have started writing when they were teenagers just like you are now, but your librarians do want to help you write and achieve your dreams. Whether you turn to the library as a place to use the computer, check out the latest YA novels as they come in hot of the presses, or take part in programming--the library (and your librarians) are here to help. Find out how to use library resources to help further your writing, which librarians you should contact if you have questions, and how to kickstart your writing journey through your local public library.

Online Young Writers Programming

Image result for nanowrimo ywp

NaNoWriMo's Young Writer's Program

NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, in which people come together annually during the month of November to try and write 50,000 words, the rough equivalent to a full draft of a novel. The Young Writer's Program seeks to facilitate the journey of young writers through National Novel Writing month by providing them with dedicated online space to write and interact with others as well as by offering resources that are aimed specifically towards young writers. Your local library may serve as a place for NaNoWriMo write-ins to take place, or talk to your librarian about using library resources during NaNoWriMo (or Camp NaNoWriMo in April and July). 

Using G-Suite

If you come to the library and want to use one of the libraries computer's to write, we recommend that you find a secure way to save your writing that will allow you to work on any computer you may have access to, even if it isn't at the library. Our recommendation is to sign up for a Google account so that you can use the G-Suite to save your work on the cloud. In addition to using Google Docs for writing, you'll have access to other G-Suite tools like Google Sheets and Google Slides. If you don't have a Google account, the basic steps below can help you create an account to get started. 

  • Go to the Google Account Creation Page 
    • Follow the instructions to create a Google account
  • Login to your account on the library computer
  • Access Google Docs
  • Start Writing! If you have previous experience with Microsoft Office, the G-Suite works in the same basic way.
  • Remember to log out of your Google account when you're finished using a public computer

The Ultimate Guide to Google Docs for Writers

UK-based writer Eva Deverell runs a popular writing website and blog filled with advice for aspiring writers. In her post, "The Ultimate Guide to Google Docs" Deverell shares what she likes about Google Docs for writing over other platforms and some of the useful features of Google Docs such as allowing for named versions and a built-in outlining feature can help writers make this platform work for them when it comes to using Google Docs for your writing.

Inter Library Loan

Are you interested in reading a book by a favorite author that the library doesn't have? Or do you want to check out an interesting book about writing that you had recommended to you, but you can't find it in our collection? Just come to the circulation desk and ask a librarian about Inter Library Loan. Through inter library loan, you can access a book for free that we may not have in our physical collection. Make sure you have the information of the book, and the patience to wait for it to be sent to use from another library and the librarian on duty will help take care of the rest. 

Ask your librarian