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Free Writing Tips

The Co-op is pleased to present free writing tips from Julie Bogart, the creator of the popular Brave Writer writing curriculum.

Make up a pseudonym for yourself.

There are writers who prefer not to use their birth names when they write a story, essay, or article. So they make up a name. You may wonder why a person would prefer a pseudonym (fictitious name). Well, some want to keep their real name a secret or they may write in different genres so they use their given name for one kind of writing and a pseudonym for the other. For example, the mathematician Charles Dodgson wrote fantasy, Alice in Wonderland, under the name of Lewis Carroll.

C.S. Lewis is best known for Chronicles of Narnia, his children’s fantasy books. Before he published those he wrote several volumes of poetry under the name Clive Hamilton.

Talk about this with your kids. Ask them to consider what pseudonym they might use if they wanted to write under a different name. It could be a completely new name they like the sound of or a combination of names from people in their family. For example, one writer used her own middle name, Patricia, and her mother's maiden name, Ennis. J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series uses the initial 'J' from her first name of Joanne and since she didn't have a middle name, she borrowed the initial 'K' from one of her grandmothers.

Ask your kids to think about names that tickle their fancy and put a few together to create a pseudonym, which they might want to use some day.
on writing and language arts curriculum from Brave Writer -- by and for homeschoolers!
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