Do you have a youngster in your life that likes to read and maybe make up their own stories? Often times an avid reader turns into a writer themselves especially when they have a vivid imagination. There are many ways to encourage a young person to want to write. You could give them a journal where they can safely put their thoughts and dreams. You can encourage them with praise to share their first poems and essays. You could show them on their computer how to use the thesaurus and spell check. Enjoy their fantasy with them and help them understand the more one writes the better at it they become.

In a recent conversation with my grandson he said he didn’t know what to write about so I shared what I had learned in a class. I told him to look around the room he was in and out any window he was near and really look at what he was seeing. For instance, his two dogs were in the room so I told him he could write about what their friendship meant to him or about when they got them. We could see my car in the drive so I offered he could write about a trip he had taken with me in the car. His mother has a lot of different colored vases in their living room. We discussed he could write a description of all of them and end with a statement he doesn’t understand why she collects them. We decided there was never a good reason to say, “I don’t know what to write about.”

Now let’s take a look at the word “young.” What if we change it to “new?” There is a wonderful place on-line called Carrot Ranch Literary that I am involved with. They encourage any writer by offering prompts to write 99 word flash fiction short stories. They love to have new writers “ride along” and only believe in positive feedback. It’s fun, it’s challenging, and the prompts are so varied it makes one write about many different subjects. You don’t even have to post your writing if you don’t want to. It’s a great way to improve your writing no matter the genre or length you generally choose to write. I invite you to check out the site and see what we are all about. The flash fiction prompts are given every Thursday evening. I look forward to the new prompt, writing and sharing my response and reading what the other writers come up with. It’s a big part of my week.