Questions from a Young Writer

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by Ann H. Gabhart

Some time ago, a young writer asked me to answer some questions for her high school writing class. A writer can be young in years or simply young in writing experience. Many of you may be both or neither, but if you’re like me, you enjoy hearing what other writers say about the writing journey. So here are my answers to a few of my young writing friend’s questions.

  1. What is the best part about being a writer?

The best part for me is telling a story and then sharing that story with readers. It’s fun when characters come to life on their story paths and great when the words flow.

  1. What is the worst part about being a writer?

Sometimes your story stalls and you start wondering if that creative wind will fill your writing sails again. Other times you may think your story is fabulous, but no publishers agree. Rejections are not a fun part of writing, but they can motivate you to work harder on your writing skills. Writers who keep writing and believing in their stories have the most chance for success.

  1. Which personality traits do you believe are vital to every writer?

Every writer needs confidence in his or her ability while also being open to constructive criticism in order to improve skills. A healthy curiosity about the world and what makes people tick are good traits. A good imagination is a must. Being goal oriented helps a writer finish projects. For me, the ability to persevere when things aren’t going well with my writing has served me well. If one story doesn’t find acceptance, I just start down a new story road and keep writing. That’s why I’ve had thirty-four books published including my new release, River to Redemption.

  1. What is the hardest part about being a writer?

That differs between individual writers. What’s difficult for me might be easy for another writer. I sometimes struggle getting the first draft of the story down, but once I have the story written, I don’t mind editing, something I know other writers hate. So writers are all different and have many ways of writing.

  1. When did you realize that you were a writer, and what sparked that epiphany?

I started writing when I was ten. I’m pretty sure at that age, I had no idea what an epiphany even was. I just knew I loved putting words together to tell a story.

  1. What inspires you the most?

Reading. I get new ideas while doing research. But then I’m inspired by nature too and enjoy thinking about my stories while I’m walking out here on the farm.

  1. If you could create a “writer’s starter pack,” which items would you include, and why?

A physical starter pack could include anything from a notebook and a pencil to a word processor. But if you mean an emotional or mental starter pack, then I would say courage to write, an idea that excites you, knowledge of grammar, a gift for words, an abundance of hope and plenty of resilience.

  1. What advice would you give to all the aspiring writers out there?

The number one thing I’d say is “Read.” Let your brain soak in words and how other writers use them to tell stories. Second, persevere. Don’t let rejections throw you off course. Keep writing. Keep improving. Believe in yourself and have fun with words.

And now go write something!!

Writing advice to a young writer from a not so young writer. @AnnHGabhart #ACFWBlogs #amwriting Click To Tweet

Ann H. Gabhart has over thirty novels to her credit, including her Shaker series, historical novels and mystery (as A.H. Gabhart). She has three children and nine grandchildren and enjoys country life in Kentucky. Visit to find out more about Ann and her new release, River to Redemption.



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