Monday, November 12, 2018

Allie Pleiter on teaching young writers

For two years now, I’ve had the pleasure of guest lecturing at Taylor University’s Professional Writing program. Since the first year I met some of the students at the Write to Publish conference, I’ve been impressed with the talent, skill, and professionalism of these young writers of faith.  These students are getting ready to launch careers that utilize their gifts on behalf of God’s kingdom—even if they don’t end up in professional posts at faith-based publications. I have no doubt all of the publishing world is gaining some great assets in these up-and-coming scribes.

What did I tell them? 
  • Work hard. 
  • Conduct yourself with integrity and professionalism, because even exceptional talent will only get you so far. 
  • Find your style and speed (of course, I taught them the Chunky Method) and stick to it.
  • Mentors and writing heroes are great, but steer clear of paralyzing comparisons. 
  • Ignore “overnight successes” because they never are what they seem. 
  • Be the writer who makes the long, steady climb in the right direction, because those are the careers that last. 
  • Celebrate every little success.
  • Allow yourself to yell “ouch” when the failures and hurts come, but don’t stay down long. Pick yourself up and start over, or start new, or just start anywhere you can find a foothold.

I enjoy giving back to my profession. What do you do to bring up young people in your field of work, church, or community?

PS: Happy Veteran's Day and my heartfelt thanks to all who serve.


  1. I love that you give back to young, up-and-coming writers. And your advice is good for everyone!
    I took over our church's college ministry program last year. It's not a huge commitment--I just write and mail an encouraging newsletter every month during the college year. I enjoy it!

  2. Great advice, Allie. I've been in your workshops before at Write to Publish, and I really appreciated all that you shared. Thanks for taking the time to share and train others.

  3. Very interesting post, Allie. It sounds very gratifying. And I think the best advice is to work hard. That will never go out of style. I'm sure the students are thrilled to be learning so much from you.


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