Way is intended for students who wish
to create a novel by the end of the course
and breaks up the task into manageable
chunks. However, it can be used also
by students who merely want to know
more about the process of fiction writing. Both of these books can count as
a half credit to help fulfill high school
If you are looking for a more complete lit-
4. Provide emotional support
erature course designed to help inspire as-
Lessons from the Lord of the Rings. At the
risk of shameless self-promotion (I con-
is designed to show how an author (in this
of four students who have used this cur-
riculum and have gone on to write their
provide step by step novel writing instruc-
tion in the same way that the other books
and honest feedback.
Some authors wish to hide their works
until they are complete, fearing criticism or discouragement. If your budding author chooses this path, respect
interested and eager to read the work
when it is ready. Others constantly crave
validation at each step of the process and
are excited to share chapters as they are
written. Encourage them, but provide
honest feedback: authors know when
you are condescending to them. Instead
and offer tiny suggestions. Say things like
didn’t really understand the part about
the dragon’s pet llama completely. Is
there a way you could explain that better in the story so that people like me can
major plot or character changes unless
goal—if a child has a real interest and
it is not fair to force this on a child or teen
just to fit your pre-conceived notions of
do discover a budding author under your
in your power to encourage this talent.
Amelia Harper is a homeschooling mother
of five and a pastor’s wife. She is also the
author of Literary Lessons from the Lord
of the Rings, a complete one-year literature curriculum designed for secondary
level homeschooled students. In addition,
she is an English tutor and a freelance
writer who has more than 350 published
articles to her credit. For more information, go to www.homescholarbooks.com.
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