Skye St. James. "The Girl's Picture Book." Grade 7. 2010 Gold Medal, Photography.

Brittany Murnahan, a high school English teacher, sent in a question about book publishing for the classroom.

Brittany asked:

Good morning!

I teach English at a private school. For my January Term (J-Term) course, I am planning a two-week workshop in which my students will work on writing and publishing a children’s book collectively. Do you have any advice for us that may be any different than advice for the normal author? Should we raise money to pay for the publishing? Read More

Magic City. Drew Lerman. 2007 Gold Medal, Novel Writing. Published by PUSH, 2007.

NaNoWriMo! November 1st marks the beginning of National Novel Writing Month. Each year, professional and aspiring novelists around the country unite with one mission: to complete a 50,000 word novel in 30 days.

Here at the Alliance, we’re also encouraging you to get started on your novel. In fact, research tells us that 81% of all Americans think they have a book inside them. But unlike National Novel Writing Month, we’re not challenging you to complete the entire book. Instead, we’ve teamed up with Scholastic Inc.’s PUSH imprint to present the novel writing category of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Read More

2010 Best Teen Writing, edited by Jared Dummit.

The Best Teen Writing of 2010 is now available!

The Best Teen Writing is an annual anthology published by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers with generous support from And it’s not called The Best Teen Writing for nothing – the poems, science fiction stories, nonfiction and short stories within have been written, edited and selected by teens. Since 2003, the book has been edited by a Writing Portfolio Gold Medalist and includes a diverse selection of writing from each category of the Awards.

For students struggling with writer’s block, finding inspiration can be as simple as reading the words of their peers. This year’s anthology brings reports from the frontlines of the recession, ghost stories, tales from waffle houses, memoirs from around the world and original poetry. Read More

Image: Cover for Havemercy. Jaida Jones and Danielle Bennett. (Spectra, 2008).

The books Havemercy, Shadow Magic and Dragon Soul are part of a fantasy trilogy written by 2004 Scholastic Writing Portfolio Gold Medalist Jaida Jones and her co-author Danielle Bennett. The books begin with a tale of two cities, Volstov and Ke-Han. Amidst warring magicians, macho dragon riders and their mysterious mechanical steeds, these rich characters must ultimately work together to find lasting peace. How did Jaida and Danielle publish three books (with a fourth on the way!) and conceive a rich fictional world with original characters? Like many epic sagas, it started out with a Scholastic Award, a story about firefighters, and a sensitivity training class at a summer job. Read More

Tiffany asked: I’m seventeen 17 and I’ve finished a Young Adult book that measures in at 256 pages and somewhere around 80,000 words. I’ve been trying for months to find an agent to represent me because I want one of the bigger publishing houses to find my book. Random House would be awesome, but that is but a dream, a fancy of a teenager. Read More

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are one of the best opportunities out there for aspiring writers of science fiction and fantasy to get their work recognized. But the Awards are not the only writing competition that accepts entries in this category. Below is a sampling of opportunities devoted exclusively to science fiction and fantasy. Some contests offer cash prizes and opportunities for publication, so please read the directions/rules carefully as some restrictions and entry fees may apply. Read More