Top Ten Mistakes Teen Writers Make: A Free E-book


My wife proudly proclaimed on her Facebook page the other day, “My husband is an author!”

It sounds nice, but it’s a bit of a stretch. At least it’s not exactly what most people think when they think author. I wrote an e-book. And I formatted it nicely and created a jazzy-looking image that looks like a real book. But it’s not a real book. For now, it’s only a digital book. There’s no solid, material, nice-smelling edition that you can thumb through at a bookstore, curl up with on a summer evening, or spill your coffee on. Maybe one day.

Not that I’m disparaging the content of the book. The ideas in it come from many years of teaching teenage writers of all ability levels. Young writers make more than just ten mistakes, mind you. In the e-book I only address my current “top ten,” which include:

  1. Preferring the Abstract to the Concrete
  2. Being Wishy-Washy
  3. Lacking Structure
  4. Self-Consciousness
  5. Overdependence on Modifiers
  6. Wordiness and Redundancy
  7. Trying Too Hard
  8. Relying on Clichés
  9. Lacking Parallelism
  10. Failing to Proofread

I give you fair warning: I’m using the e-book as a marketing strategy. It’s free, but you need to enter your email address in order to download it. I will send periodic emails to those who have subscribed that way touting the glories of the WriteAtHome program. But don’t worry. It won’t be more than one email a week for a limited time, and you can easily unsubscribe from the list with the click of a link.

Then again, maybe I’ll persuade you to join in the awesomenesss that is WriteAtHome. Mwa-ha-ha!

Even if you have no interest in the WriteAtHome program or our marketing efforts, I sure would appreciate folks reading the book and giving me their honest assessment. I think it’s pretty good. At least it’s a useful tool for learning about and teaching writing. It’s also only about 30 pages long. You can easily read it on one sitting.

If you’d like to give it a try, you can click on the ad in the right-hand column of the blog, or you can just click on the same thing below.

Thanks in advance to those who take the time to read it and respond!


Honest comments about my e-book are welcome in the Reply space below.


About the Author

Brian WaskoBrian is the founder and president of One of his passions is to teach young people how to write better.View all posts by Brian Wasko

  1. Rhonda Barfield
    Rhonda Barfield08-30-2013

    I just ordered your book, Brian, and can’t wait to read it!

  2. Lori

    Love the book! Substantive, and concise, so I think my writing-phobic high schooler would be open to reading it. My personal pet peeve is wasting ink – so it would be nice not to have the graphics on every page. Your logo, fine; huge triangular graphic, wah!! But that’s a minor point. For the content, you get a cute red apple with an A+ on it 😉 Thanks so much. Really enjoy your blogs.

    • Brian Wasko
      Brian Wasko08-30-2013

      Thanks, Lori. I did the layout myself too, and that is not my area of strength. Still, I didn’t design it to be easily printed. The thinking is that e-books are most often read on screens–readers, tablets, phones or computer monitors. I’ll keep that in mind for the next one though. 🙂

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