By Jennifer L. Davidson
Young writers of fiction are capable of many great things. If given the proper instruction, constructive criticism, inspiration, and encouragement, they can create well-thought-out stories filled with characters we care about, a plot that takes us on a wild (or wild-at-heart) adventure, a setting dark with demons or light with fairies and rainbows, and a theme that forces us to second-guess our most obstinate opinions. So, with these learned and practiced skills, doesn’t it make sense that after graduating high school and possibly college these young wordsmiths will be able to achieve (at the highest level) any task given to them by an employer?
With their knowledge, they should easily be able to:
1. Write a company newsletter without grammatical errors
2. Update a company’s mission statement, making their message clearer
3. Create a blog post that is informative and not condescending
4. Shoot off an email to a team of co-workers that’s easily understood by all
5. Tell a company’s story with an image and a well-written caption
6. Communicate with a customer…politely
7. Communicate with an unhappy customer…appeasingly
8. Construct a document using a clear and concise language
9. Compose a business plan outlining a company’s vision for the next ten and twenty years
10. Compile a list of references and resources for employee personal development
11. Compile a list of employee’s favorite books to share internally
12. Devise a briefing (perhaps a Presidential press conference) to inform the nation
As you can you see, if a student is given the tools and guidance to orchestrate sentences into short stories or longer works of fiction, they also have the foundation to be an asset to a well-deserving future employer. And, sure, these students might still write ferociously in their spare time, aspiring to be a best-selling author, but until then, they can most certainly do great things in the workplace.
How can you help a young writer continue to love writing? Help them find resources. Connect them with other young writers. Exchange story ideas. Buy or check-out books. (Great writers are also avid readers.) Above all else, encourage them. Kind words can go a long way.