Why I Write for Young People

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, letters like this one from Megan in North Carolina, are why I write.

Megan is 13 and in the 8th grade. When I was 13, I was failing English--again. This young lady wants to be writer. I'd say she is a writer.

Thank you, Megan. Your letter inspired me to keep working. Now, if I could only write as well as you do.

Dear Ginny,

    My former best friend (who has abandoned me for a life of heavy eyeliner and break-up songs) and I were scoping through our Scholastic Bookfair a while back (when we were still in good terms). There were little to no horse books there due to the fact we were in middle school and most girls had grown out of that stereotypical pony-loving stage. But not us. While searching for that gem in the rough, we simultaneously spotted your novel, The Outside of a Horse, and bought a copy.
    Kali, my old friend, hated reading. She hated literature, she hated poetry, and to my dismay, she pretty much hated any form of art. But your book- it was different.  Though we were in the 6th grade and she was yet to finish a novel in her life, she actually finished reading before me, which was extremely odd because I was the one with the renowned reading habits. After we had both finished the book, we read it again, talked about it, read it again, cover to cover until we could both recite every chapter. I tried to provide her with similar reading, but nothing stuck as well as your book. You moved not only her, but me as well. For a reason unrelated to your book, we are no longer friends, but every time I want to merrily recollect on how she used to be, I pick up your book and I read.
    Now I am 13 and in the 8th grade. For years I have stifled my love of writing out of doubt; saying you want to be a writer when you grow up is an unanchored ambition. I still am wary of my ability to support myself financially with my writing, but was recently encouraged by one of my teachers. Do you have any advice for an aspiring writer? I know it is hard to recall effort after being relinquished from its hardships, but any word from you would mean a lot to me.

Thank you for everything you have done,