TWFT BookclubJuly 4, 2009 at 10:31 PM | Posted in Reading, Uncategorized, Writing | 4 Comments
This post may seem odd at first, to those who have frequented TWFT in the past. Because I honestly don’t have anything to say about writing or editing or submitting right now (I know… I’m sorry). But what I do have to say may be just as important. Sometimes, there is more to writing than just sitting down and putting your ideas to print. To be a good writer you sometimes need to be a good reader. ;)
For this reason, I have proposed the TWFT bookclub.
The idea is simple. At the beginning of the month, we will propose a young adult book (one that we hopefully haven’t read before – that part will be difficult) and we will have that whole month to either purchase or borrow the book and read it. At the end of the month, a discussion piece (be it an interview with the author, an in-depth book review, or simple commentary) will be posted here, and we will all be encouraged to discuss the story, and more.
When I was young, I was quick to point out mistakes in any book I picked up. I believe that we, as writers, won’t be reading these books as the average reader would. We will be reading the text almost like scientists; studying, critiquing and judging. It may be scary for the author if he/she finds out ;) but through reading we will learn and hopefully grow.
This month of July, 2009, I would like us all to read “You Are Here” by Jennifer E. Smith. Quite a few things jumped out at me about this particular work. For instance, the first line. But more importantly, Jennifer E. Smith has taken the idea of a roadtrip (not a new concept for young adult fiction in the least) and still created a unique, beautiful story. TWFT posts about originality and cliches come to mind. The novel is also very well written in third person, in a genre that often seems to be dominated by first person point of view. I would pay particular attention this month to writing in third person.
And, once again, I stress the first line. Stolen cars excite me.
Emma Healy has never fit in with the rest of her family. She’s grown used to being the only ordinary one among her rather extraordinary parents and siblings. But when she finds a birth certificate for a twin brother she never knew she had, along with a death certificate dated just two days later, she feels like a part of her has been justified in never feeling quite whole. Suddenly it seems important to visit his grave, to set off in search of her missing half. When her next-door neighbor Peter Finnegan — who has a quiet affinity for maps and a desperate wish to escape their small town — ends up coming along for the ride, Emma thinks they can’t possibly have anything in common. But as they head from upstate New York toward North Carolina, driving a beat-up and technically stolen car and picking up a stray dog along the way, they find themselves learning more and more about each other. Neither is exactly sure what they’re looking for, but with each passing mile, each new day of this journey, they seem to be getting much closer to finding it