Hope in the Mail: Reflections on Writing and Life (Hardcover)
Part writing guide and part memoir, this inspiring book from the author of Flipped and The Running Dream is like Bird by Bird for YA readers and writers.
Wendelin Van Draanen didn't grow up wanting to be a writer, but thirty books later, she's convinced that writing saved her life. Or, at least, saved her from a life of bitterness and despair. Writing helped her sort out what she thought and felt and wanted. And digging deep into fictional characters helped her understand the real people in her life better as well.
Wendelin shares what she's learned--about writing, life, and what it takes to live the writing life. This book is packed with practical advice on the craft: about how to create characters and plot a story that's exciting to read. But maybe even more helpful is the insight she provides into the persistence, and perseverance, it takes to live a productive, creative life. And she answers the age-old question Where do you get your ideas? by revealing how events in her own life became the seeds of her best-loved novels.
Hope in the Mail is a wildly inspirational read for anyone with a story to share.
About the Author
WENDELIN VAN DRAANEN was a classroom teacher for many years before turning to writing full-time. Her first Sammy Keyes mystery, Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief, won the coveted Edgar Award. She is also the author of many beloved stand-alone novels, including Flipped, The Running Dream, Wild Bird, and The Secret Life of Lincoln Jones. She lives in Central California with her husband. You can read more about her work online at WendelinVanDraanen.com or follow her on Twitter, Tumblr, or Instagram at @WendelinVanD--or on Facebook: @SammyKeyesBooks.
"Van Draanen's voice is charmingly no-nonsense, and the themes she explores are sure to benefit aspiring writers of many ages. Thoughtful and entertaining." —Kirkus Reviews
"A pure delight! Only Wendelin Van Draanen can make the painful, awful, agonizing aspects of writing seem so joyfully manageable. Hope in the Mail is a toolbox and a source of renewable energy. If you're a writer, or a teacher of writers, you need this book." —Andrew Smith, author of Winger and Grasshopper Jungle
"Content is the king of writing, and it turns out Wendelin Van Draanen is the queen of finding it. Read her book, set some good writing habits, pick up your pen, and get going." —Jack Gantos, author of Dead End in Norvelt, Hole in My Life, and Writing Radar: Using Your Jornal to Snoop Out and Craft Great Stories
"Wendelin Van Draanen shares essential truths and very good advice for writers of all genres and levels of skill. This is a must-have for all writers." —Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of V-Wars and Broken Lands
A unique book with an even more unique message. Federle writes an inspirational book with hints of his own boyhood and tricks in Broadway. Life is Like a Musical shows us that your own story is not what your parents or your siblings think you should do but what you want. I would give this book to anyone who just needs a life boost. - Kaitlyn, customer age 12