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Spilling Ink: A Young Writer's Handbook

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4.34  ·  Rating Details ·  844 Ratings  ·  188 Reviews
LEARN HOW TO WRITE LIKE THE EXPERTS, FROM THE EXPERTS.

In Spilling Ink: A Young Writer's Handbook, you'll find practical advice in a perfect package for young aspiring writers.

After receiving letters from fans asking for writing advice,accomplished authors Anne Mazer and Ellen Potter joined together to create this guidebook for young writers. The authors mix inspirational a
...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published March 30th 2010 by Square Fish
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Betsy
Jun 03, 2010 Betsy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was child writer. Which is to say, I was one of those kids who wrote endless stories between the ages of nine and fourteen or so. Of these stories, I finished only one. And I remember taking a writing class over a summer once that I enjoyed, but otherwise I didn't have a lot of direction when it came to my writing. I dabbled a bit in high school, but for the most part my creative side floundered for many years before getting a bit of a revivification in adulthood. So it's impossible for me not ...more
Barb Middleton
Feb 28, 2015 Barb Middleton rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, humor
Good grief. I have 10 pages of notes on this book. Don't worry, I won't put you to bed with a long review, but the great phrases, advice, and lesson ideas had me paraphrasing oodles of sections. Speaking of "oodles," it is a word I've been hooked on lately. Go ahead, say the word. Now get a good gob of spit in the back of your throat and say it like a five-year-old blowing bubbles. My grandson reminded me of this fun bubble-spit game. This book advises to beware of certain "writing tics" such as ...more
Cherylann
Mar 15, 2011 Cherylann rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, non-fiction
Admittedly, this book sat on my desk at school for 7 months before I picked it, and I only picked it up because I was feeling guilty that I was hogging a book from the school library that a student or two probably wanted to read. I took it from the library because I thought it sounded like a good read. I had no idea what a good read this book is! I can't wait to book talk it to my students. The book is full of sound writing advice for kids. And the best part is they'll probably take it for two r ...more
Amy Bearce
This is the best book on the craft of creative writing that I've read that is aimed at elementary kids and middle schoolers. It's written to the young people themselves, which is fun, and offers challenges and advice from two different authors. Teachers could easily incorporate it into their classrooms. I am asked sometimes which books to help someone learn to write. My favorite writing book for high schoolers and up is On Writing, by Stephen King, followed by Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. And I ...more
AryaTheFangirl
Liked this more than I thought I would. Most writing books one reads are really dense but this one wasn't. Also some unique advice which tends to be lacking in most writing books.
Aɳɳα
A great book on writing!
Katelyn
Oct 25, 2016 Katelyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is exactly what the title is, "a young writer's handbook." And it's a great one too. With twists and turns through all the unfamiliar caves of writing, it helped in many ways. I started reading this book awhile ago, and I just recently finished it. I'd like to first say that if you are a younger writer, this book is very helpful. One of my favorite parts of this book is the character development section. Specifically the "Naming your characters" chapter. A quote from that part, written ...more
Tasha
Mar 08, 2010 Tasha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Two veteran authors take their years of writing, their know-how, and their energy and offer it happily to new authors, both young and old. What could have been a dry subject is definitely not in their hands. Simply starting the book will have you hooked and make you wonder why you never wrote that book that you know you have inside you. Mazer and Potter take on all of your excuses, throw in some great advice, and really inspire you to go for it! Written with lots of humor, this book has I Dare Y ...more
Tate
Feb 26, 2016 Tate rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Spilling ink is a book with many tips about how to write a book. It is tips on how to write, not how to write. It gives great examples and great explanations on why the tips work. It is broken up into sections, for example, one section is about characters and how to make them seem realistic. Another section is about how to make a good conflict in the story. Spilling ink is a book with tips of how to write a book.
I loved the book. It really helped me on my journey to be an author. It had very f
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Tonya Shuford
Jun 20, 2016 Tonya Shuford rated it it was amazing
As an instructional coach, I have used this book to inspire three fourth grade classes to add more meat to their writing. The co-authors are published authors of children's literature. They share how to bring characters and writing to life in a hilarious and amusing way. Threaded throughout each chapter are dares for the reader to complete. My daughter that is about to enter 7th grade absolutely LOVES this book. She stole it from me! Her favorite part is the dares that are threaded throughout ea ...more
Collin
Jul 08, 2016 Collin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved how this isn't just your typical tips from some guy no ones ever heard of. This book was written by numerous well known authors and the way they wrote it really appealed to my senses, especially seeing as how the styles were different amongst writers however seemed to be written solely for me. I liked how there was some humor in some areas, like the prologue the very first sentence read "Congratulations! No one ever reads the prologue so I'd like to give you some kudos, we're gonna get a ...more
Amy Carr
Jul 17, 2010 Amy Carr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Whether you are a child, teenager or adult...whether you are a writer or just secretly dream of writing...this is a wonderful reference book to get you writing or help improve what you have written. It is written for an audience 3rd grade and older and really breaks down not only the process of "writing" but all the different elements of story, character, voice, etc. It gives "writing" assignments, examples, and tries to break down this overwhelming task into bite size pieces. I loved the book.. ...more
Abby Moreland
Jun 01, 2012 Abby Moreland rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was like my 7,000,000 read. This is an amazing, amazing writing book. It covers plot, characters, writing style, writing habit, metaphors and similes, writing picture books, battling writers block, dealing with criticism, and so much more. I go back to it whenever I'm stuck. And though I've checked it out at the library each time, I'm ordering it on Amazon soon. Best yet - Anne and Ellen put it all together with a modern, humorous, and anything-but-boring style!
Dayna
May 20, 2015 Dayna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Here's the best part of being a writer: Your words can change the world."

Very insightful. And more than just helpful.
TheLibraryOfSarah
Loved this helpful and motivating/inspiring book =)
Wendy
Oct 29, 2010 Wendy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a joyous energetic writing guide, good for any age! Seems especially appropriate for middle-grade authors.
Mariana.C16
Jan 04, 2017 Mariana.C16 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm a young writer whos looking for encouragement, tips, and experience in writing. If you are one of those too this is the right book. Not only does it tell you techniques of writing, but it also tells you how the real world out there is. Also one of the best parts is that the authors provide challenging writing exercises!

This is a book that will forever sit on my bureau and that I can always link back to!
Reyna
Nov 03, 2016 Reyna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I myself am a teen writer and you wouldn't believe how much this book helped me develop my current story! Spilling Ink dives deep into getting to know your characters and the importance of character development. It forced me to ask myself questions that never occurred to me before and I constantly return to this book for advice and tips. Overall worthy of five stars! I definitely recommend!
Femke
Nov 22, 2016 Femke rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Look, I wish there were something like this for teenagers who aspire to become authors. This book was a bit childish for me, but it taught me lots. I mean, how is there not something like this for people above the age of 12? It's genius!
Luna
Jan 22, 2017 Luna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love to write and this book was extremely helpful to me. I recommend this book to all writers!!
The Reading Countess
Publisher’s Summary:

LEARN HOW TO WRITE LIKE THE EXPERTS, FROM THE EXPERTS.

Practical advice in a perfect package for young aspiring writers.

After receiving letters from fans asking for writing advice,accomplished authors Anne Mazer and Ellen Potter joined together to create this guidebook for young writers. The authors mix inspirational anecdotes with practical guidance on how to find a voice, develop characters and plot,
make revisions, and overcome writer’s block. Fun writing prompts will help
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William
Feb 27, 2017 William rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: writing
Helpful, but many of the sections focus specifically on writing kids books. These principles can be applied elsewhere, but parts of it seem a little thin.
Rosie LaJenky
Sep 23, 2016 Rosie LaJenky rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: any aspiring writers
This book was funny, wise, and easy to understand.
NebraskaIcebergs
Having never heard of Anne Mazer or Ellen Potter before, their writing biographies initially felt a little less important than the tips about writing that I could pick up from their guide: Spilling Ink. Ironically, I've now added their novels to my reading list. Such is the power of a good writing guide! (It also doesn't hurt that Mazer has written a series of books about a girl who wants to be a writer.) If you aren't a fan of novels where the character viewpoints switch back and forth (and I'm ...more
Brandi Plumlee
Jun 22, 2012 Brandi Plumlee rated it really liked it
Shelves: reference
Name: Brandi Plumlee, LME 508
Potter, E., & Mazer, A. (2010). Spilling ink: A young writer’s handbook. New York, NY: Roaring Book Press.
Cost: $8.99 (Barnes and Noble)
Dewey/Call Number: (Not available from Library of Congress)

Reading Level: 9-14 years

Category: Elementary Level/Non-fiction Reference-Handbook

Review Citation:
Brownson, A. (2011). Book Review [Review of the book Spilling Ink: A Young Writer’s Handbook]. School Library Journal, 57(7), 72. Retrieved on June 16, 2012 from Academic Se
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Laura Faulkner
Mazer, A., Potter, E., & Phelan, M. (2010). Spilling ink: A young writer's handbook. New York: RB Flash Point/Roaring Brook Press.

Citation: Laura Faulkner
Type of Reference: Handbook
Call Number: Ref 808.3

Content/Scope: This handbook is written for young writers in 5th through 9th grades. The content is designed to aide them in the writing process with various form of books ranging from picture books to elaborate fiction. Writing Prompts are included and referred to as “I Dare You’s” to encou
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Ciarra
Mar 05, 2011 Ciarra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Young Writers
Shelves: favorites
Spilling Ink By Ellen Potter and Anne Mazer is a handbook for young writers. In this book Ellen and Anne give all sorts of tips and advice on making a book. From making characters come to life to how to turn on your idea radar, this book has it covered. Spilling Ink also gives some insight on making picture books and more on being a writer instead of just how to make a book.

Spilling Ink really is a great handbook for any young author. I feel like a changed writer after reading it. I feel more co
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Jamie
Citation by: Jamie Schenck

Type of Reference: Handbook

Call Number: TEEN 808.3

Brief Description: This handbook provides tips for young people who want to become writers. The writing tips come straight from experts - the writers of this, and many other books.

Citation for where the item has been reviewed:
Brownson, A. (2011). Spilling ink: A young writer's handbook. School Library Journal, 57(7), 52.

Content Scope: This book is geared toward higher level elementary students and middle school studen
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Charity
Phelan, M. l., Potter, E., & Mazer, A. (2010). Spilling ink: A young writer's handbook. United States of America: Flash Point.

Reference Type: Handbook

Call Number: 808.02

Content/ Scope: This handbooks guides students (gr. 4-7) through process it takes to be a writer. It offers tips and opportunities for the reader to use the knowledge they have gained though “I dare you” sections. The handbook is available in audio format.

Accuracy/Authority/Bias: The authors are experienced writers. The tips
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M. Neeley
Jun 22, 2012 M. Neeley marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reference
Melissa Neeley

Title:
Mazer, A., Potter, E. (2010). Spilling ink: A young writer’s handbook. New York, NY: Roaring Book Press.

Type of Reference: Handbook
Call #: Y808.3 Mazer
Cost: $15.34

Description: This book offers playful advice on how to progress through the writing process for intermediate students.

Relevance and Relationship: A useful writing guide for older elementary or middle grade students, this handbook can be used in all content areas across the curriculum.

Purpose: This handbook analyze
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Ellen Potter is the author of many children's books, including the Olivia Kidney series, Pish Posh, SLOB, and The Kneebone Boy. Her non-fiction book, Spilling Ink; a Young Writer’s Handbook, was co-authored by Anne Mazer

Olivia Kidney was awarded Child magazine’s “Best Children’s Book Award” and was selected as one of the “Books of the Year” by Parenting magazine.

SLOB is on more than 10 state book
...more
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