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Friday, August 17, 2012

Motivating Small Children to Write

Joseph Ramirez asked me to do a guest post on his blog about the three 'teachers' that have influenced my writing the most. Go check it out!!! :) 

Speaking of teachers... My mum is a primary school teacher and asked me the other night if I could print out old drafts and current drafts of some of my stories, including Evergreen, so that she could show her kids how a story develops, from initial writing, editing, rewriting and repetition of the process. The aim of this is to motivate them with their own writing work and encourage them to actually put some effort in when they proof-read, editing and rewrite.

She wants to read a chapter of Evergreen to them every week... At this point, Evergreen has a pretty poor sense of consistency due to the amount of changes I've made in the first chapter alone, and the lack of editing I've done in the rest of the story.

I wonder how this will turn out :) 

- Bonnee. 

8 comments:

  1. Very nice post over there, Bonnee, thanks for sharing.

    I think showing kids the changes in a manuscript can be a great way for kids to learn how much it takes to hone writing to perfection (or as close to it as we can get). Potentially good for you to get reactions from a slightly-bigger audience on Evergreen than you've gotten so far, but how little are these kids, and is the writing too far above their level of comprehension? Though I guess your mother knows your writing and the capability of her kids.

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    1. That's an issue I have with the situation too. Not only are the kids only in their second year of school, but a lot of them are bellow standard as far as their work goes and come from messed up families. Yeah, it's one of THOSE school... and some of the content in Evergreen isn't exactly G-rated either. But mum seems to reckon that's not the point, so... :p We'll see.

      Glad you liked the guest post :)

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  2. What a great inspiration that will be for kids too! I remember when I was young, all I'd ever wanted to do was write books. So to go to these kids and say 'hey, my teenage daughter wrote this' would have blown my mind! What a lovely post, Bonnee.

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    1. I sure hope to inspire with the combination of age and achievements, even if I'm no Sonya Hartnet (one of my favourite Aussie authors who was first published at 15 if I remember rightly...).

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  3. That is so very, very cool! You have a great mom and she must be very proud of you.

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    1. Yes, pretty cool. But you won't catch me throwing compliments around for my mum... I'll leave that up to your interpretation though.

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  4. They say that Mom knows best, so hoepfully her idea to read your novel for her students will be good for them and for you. But JeffO raised a good question about the ages of the students. Hopefully, you will come to their class and tell them about you life as a writer. Meting you in person will make the experience more real to them and to you. I'm surprised that you keep all the old drafts of Evergreen. I have my novels on my memory stick, and I only have the current version. I wonder if other authors keep older drafts.

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    1. It would be cool to come in and talk to them, but frankly I hate small children (and the ones at my mum's school are particularly evil...). Perhaps if they were high-school kids, I would feel better about this. I'm trying to be optimistic, but I'm feeling more pessimistic now that I've thought about it a little more...

      I only have one old draft of Evergreen, and that was from the initial writing of it. And I'm glad I've got that; in my recent re-drafting, I discovered some gaps where a passage had deleted itself or been lost in translation one way or another... But at present, Evergreen is the only story I have an 'old draft' of.

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