December 30, 2011


Many readers ask questions about how they can get started as a writer. This year, I combined many of those excellent questions into a single guideline for beginning authors. Hunter wrote: "I have improved in writing a lot this year!" And Olivia added: "GOOOOOOO WRITING!"











When I speak in schools, I usually tell the story of writing my first book, called SPACE MONSTERS, when I was in second grade. Since I have been in a lot of schools recently, I have been hearing from students who love writing, and are asking for advice on how to become authors.

A dog-lover named Natalie wrote:

Ever since I was in 1st grade, I have wanted to be a writer to express my deep imagination. I have written fantasy books like you wrote Space Monsters. Every time I start a book I want to start a new one with a complete new idea. How do you stick to one book topic at a time?

Or this note, from Marissa:

I want to become an author when I grow up. I write every day. I just wrote a few stories in my writer’s notebook at school! I tried to write a chapter book, it has a few chapters.

Dina, whose school I visited this winter, asked:

What do you think I should do to be a good writer like you? You already told us to start writing while you are a kid but I want to know more. I’m very interested about you and writing! 

I’m so glad to receive letters like these from fellow writers! I think that writers begin their life as a writer when they are young, just as you are. It’s important to keep writing as much as you can. I’ve written many books and usually work on several books at the same time. I do research on a number of topics and write about one of them. I think you might like to do the same.

While you are working on a book or story, keep the ideas for future books coming. Keep a notebook or journal where you jot down your story ideas, and any details that seem important to you. That way, you can stick with the one story that you’re working on until you are finished, but you are still keeping track of ideas that you might want to write about later. Sometimes I go back and write a book from a scrap of an idea that I jotted down years before. So don’t be shy about writing down your thoughts. You never know when they might come in handy!

Finishing a book is always much harder than starting a new book. But like everything else that you want to learn to do well, writing takes practice. The more you write, the better you get at it, and the easier it becomes.

I wish you well with all your writing projects!

Your fellow writer,



For those of you receiving iPads or Nook Color/Tablets this season, Seymour Simon has many quality eBooks available for purchase, some discounted as much as 50% for the holidays. If you are adding reading material to a tablet, please consider making Seymour Simon’s exceptional nonfiction for children part of your collection. Happy holidays to all!


Posted by: Seymour Simon

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