Some kids don’t think that a writing class could be any fun, but here at the Loft, we’re determined to prove how fun and exciting writing can be. Today, we got some great evidence.
This week, teaching artist Holly Day is offering a class called “Organize Your Writing.” Imagine our surprise, then, to see how disorganized–and amazingly creative and fun!–the class looked as they flew paper airplanes around the room today.
A paper hat! How’s that for a way to fill your head with stories?
Photo: Rebecca Schultz, Loft intern
Folding paper airplanes and letting ‘em rip!
Photo: Rebecca Schultz, Loft intern
If you’ve been following this blog since last year, you may remember Rachel, a young literary rock star. She came to the Loft for a class last week and she was kind enough to share this suggestion:
Just wanted to share with you this awesome site (which you probably already know about) called YA Highway. They came out with a cool publishing “Road Map” and I think teens would really appreciate it.
Thanks for the tip, Rachel! Teens, we hope it helps you out.
Last week in Marie Olofsdotter’s class called “Fairy Tales & Myths: Write Your Own Story,” every student created a fascinating magical realm and filled it with characters on a journey and, of course, villains. One student, though, really went above and beyond: he wrote 36 pages! That’s more than most adults have ever written.
It’s a great story. Enjoy!
An illustration of Dako
An illustration of Hastabingo
An illustration of the kingdom of Tikrif
For the first time ever, the wonderful folks downstairs at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts curated a gallery show of book artwork created by students in Loft/MCBA combo classes this summer.
Today, MCBA employees and volunteers were hard at work hanging the show. We’re excited about it and we hope you’ll come see it!
First-ever exhibition of Loft/MCBA student artwork
July 28-August 4, 2012
Cowles Literary Commons (2nd floor, Open Book)
Please join us for a gallery reception August 4, 2:00-4:30 p.m.
Public reading at 2:45.
If you wish to read, there will be a signup sheet at the reception.
It will be limited to 10 spaces, so if you’d like to read, arrive early.
Snacks and beverages will be served.
MCBA Teaching Artist Aki Shibata had some tough decisions to make about placement, because all of the artwork is great!
We can’t wait to celebrate!
Where are we Ed? Don’t ask me Fred. Whow! The air smeled like fire. Fred I think were in the Earth. You think. Hi I’m Whod. Hi Im Ed. Ed that’s Fred. Shut up Ed. Ok Ok. Let us go. What?
A really fun class taking place this week is called Fairy Tales & Myths: Write Your Own Story. Teaching artist Marie Olofsdotter instructed students to create a magical place and to draw a picture of it. The results are indeed magical.
By Lachen R., age 10
By Per A., age 10
By Nico A., age 9
By Ciara D., age 8
By Grace Z, age 10
By West A., age 10
One of the great things about books is that they’re transportable, and one of the great things about public transportation is that you can relax with a book while someone else battles traffic on your behalf. Hence the concept of Underground New York Public Library, a blog/gallery of photos of people reading in New York subways.
I love this idea! I’d like to do the same thing here in Minneapolis. What do you think? Readers, if you get a picture of yourself reading on MetroTransit and send it to me (ejsmith at loft dot org), I’ll post it here on this blog.
I found out about UNYPL from 101 Books, a blog written by a guy who has set out to read 101 books this year and write about his experience–also a great site to read if you want inspiration to take on great literary feats.
I just took a look at this article by Jeff Goins about weak words, that is, words that don’t work hard enough to make a sentence worthwhile.
You don’t always think about it as you first put words on the page, but when you edit, you should consider whether your words are captivating, descriptive, and original. The French call it the bon mot, the “good word” (sounds better in French, though, doesn’t it?) After all, when you write, words are all you’ve got to do what you want to do.
I would like to add a few more words to Mr. Goins’s list:
What a lazy adjective! The point of adjectives is to describe, so if you can’t describe something, you might as well not have adjectives at all. You can describe anything if you make a sincere effort to use the vast expanse of your vocabulary.
My problem with the word awesome is not that it’s weak–on the contrary!–but it’s so overused that it has been sapped of its awesome power. Very few things are actually awesome, as in, they actually inspire such awe and disbelief that your jaw hits the floor. The Grand Canyon is awesome. The Milky Way is awesome. Risking your life to do what is right is awesome. Pretty much everything else that you might describe as awesome–your favorite movie, a friend’s outfit, a good grade in school–is merely entertaining, stylish, or impressive.
What are your verbal pet peeves? What words make you think a writer is dull or lazy or both?
Helena S. from last week’s “Making Comics” class was kind enough to share the first page of the comic she worked on. Beautiful!
Do you ever have trouble sitting down to read because you just can’t get comfortable? You’re not alone. In fact, a young woman named Cassidy Tucker made this hilarious YouTube video about the ever-vexing problem of how to read.
And while you’re at it, check out her YouTube channel. She posts reviews of YA books and movies. What a great way to create community around books!