This week publishYOUth spoke with Ameera Kane, a 15-year-old writer from New Rochelle, New York. Having started a writing account and blog this July, Ameera has worked to empower youth writers through her personal story, tips, and novel-writing journey. She also has a personalized online course launching on August 24th to give writers guidance and motivation! Here we spoke with Ameera about her advice for budding writers, her driving passions, and her transformative platform!
What fuels your love for writing?
AK: What fuels my love for writing is the thought that one day, my book will be upon those shelves and people will be able to just lose themselves in my little creation. I’ve always found solace in writing and in a world that’s constantly changing, it’s comforting to know my safe haven will always be there for me.
You recently started your writing account on Instagram and website this July, and you’ve already garnered a wonderful following, hosted a writing contest, and written a spectacular batch of articles! How does it all feel?
AK: Wow, even you saying all that is like “did I really do that?”. It just feels absolutely amazing and kind of mind-blowing, to be honest. I’ve been in such a “boss” mode you can say, during this pandemic and the response I’ve gotten has completely been amazing and heart-warming. In the beginning, I honestly thought it would take months to just reach 100 followers so the fact that people actually want to listen to a 15-year-old is simply incredible.
On your blog you’ve written many empowering articles about taking pride in being a writer and breaking the stigma around pursuing writing as a career. What advice would you give to youth who are still struggling with calling themselves a writer or putting themselves out there?
AK: My advice would be to just believe that that part of themselves is absolutely beautiful. They should be proud of themselves. What I love about writing is that there’s power in vulnerability and writers shouldn’t hide that part of them. My mom reminds me constantly that she doesn’t care if I’m published or not, I'm still a writer. The greatest thing about being a writer is that no one has the power to call you a writer or not. Only you do. People who run the world are the ones that tell stories, so always believe that you are a bad*ss writer.
What experience has had the biggest impact on your writing?
AK: I would say that the experience that has had the biggest impact on my writing would be completing my first-ever book at thirteen years old. The book I’m writing currently is actually the second book I’ve written in my life. But I think that actually holding my first book in my hand gave me that self-confidence that I could actually do this. That will forever be a proud moment of mine and I truly feel that it unlocked something inside me seeing as my writing has greatly improved from there. That experience gave me the courage to be more vulnerable and not dissociate myself so much from my work moving forward.
What advice do you have for young writers pondering whether to start their own blog or writing account?
AK: Nike said it best: just do it. There’s a quote that I’m in love with that goes “a writer who waits for inspiration is a waiter, not a writer”. If you spend so much making “preparations” and “thinking” about it, you’ll never do it. I promise you, it’s worth it. The writing community is beyond amazing. I can tell you that. Every writer has a unique thing they bring to the table but you can’t be afraid to come to the table, let alone the room. Do it. Do it now. I double-dog dare you.
You’re going to be hosting an online course for all writers, with free and paid options, on your site soon! What prompted you to start this, and can you tell us what to expect?
AK: Yes, I am super, super excited for everyone to see. I started this because all my life, I resented the fact that school never encouraged writing as a career. My goal for my upcoming online courses is to help writers who are lost and need guidance. Writers constantly have to learn by themselves in the shadows while white-collar jobs are being praised and taught daily. I want to help writers like myself learn how to better hone their craft and what better time to do so when school won’t be interfering with our creativity as much!
I don’t want to reveal too much but you should expect courses that range from how to properly do characterization to starting your very own author website. Users will be able to specify and get a personalized course that caters to their weaknesses instead of just a generalized course that really does nothing for them.
What are your writing hopes and goals for the future?
AK: Well, as of right now, my writing goal for the future is to fully complete my book I’m writing right now. Not to spoil it too much but it’s called The One You Truly Fear. It’s about a girl who moves to a new town after the aftermath of her dad’s affair and soon discovers a mirror that has the power to transport her to different possible alternate versions of her life. However, she’s in for a shock when she realizes that these versions of her are actually plotting to destroy her. So that’s all you’re getting but yeah, I’ve had such a blast writing this book so far and I can’t wait for when it comes out!
Finally, what advice do you have for youth writers looking to get their voices out there, either through publications, competitions, or another avenue?
AK: For youth writers out there itching for a chance to get their voice out there, my advice to them would be to always keep that fire inside you going. Never be compliant with the hand you’ve been dealt with. Keep going and keep imagining. You gotta be hungry enough for it. Email, DM, call, just engage, and market. There's always someone with an answer to your question. Do anything and everything and there will be results I promise.
Special thanks to Ameera Kane for her participation in this interview and the writing community! Feel free to reach out to her on Instagram (@writingbootcamp205) or through her website, and stay tuned for her course launching August 24th!