Figment is an online community to create, discover, and share new reading and writing.
Follow your literary obsessions. Find fans for your work. Read the latest by your favorite authors. Vote up the best stories. Embrace your inner book nerd. Read. Write. Procrastinate. Repeat. Whatever you’re into, from sonnets to mysteries, from sci-fi stories to cell phone novels, you can find it on Figment.
Founded by New Yorker staff writer Dana Goodyear and former New Yorker managing editor Jacob Lewis, Figment.com is an online writing community aimed at attracting a membership of young people, ranging from kids to teens and older, to post, share and comment on each other’s original writing. Launched this week, the site is also teaming with YA author Blake Nelson, author of the well-received 1994 adult novel Girl, who is serializing Dream School, a long unpublished YA sequel to Girl, on the Figment site.
I'm so happy to see a sophisticated young writers' site where kids and teens can work hard at their craft, receive serious feedback, and learn how the publishing world works while enjoying a safe online environment. It's hot on Twitter at @FigmentFiction , already with 1,300 followers and their Facebook page exceed 3,000.
From my experience with finding markets for kids and teens and young adults, I've seen them come and go, so often whimsical and fleeting except for very few like Stone Soup Magazine. But the interaction wanes after a year or two. This site, however, just might have the foundation for a long-lasting avenue for kid writers.
I'm all about young people embracing their writing -not hiding it in the closet or feeling they can never be worthy. Safe havens for them are rare. Parents want them to do well, but don't understand the writing universe. Teachers don't often know how it works either, and don't have the time to help a serious kid. I once mentored teens and helped find mentors for other teen writers, but the owner of the site grew older and lost interest as she became an adult with her own issues, which often happens.
Solid sites and advice for young writers don't happen often, so when they do, take advantage of them. This one is on solid footing. Hopefully, Figment.com will last, and in the best case scenario, help writers find ways to put their work in print. Hats off to them . . . and good luck.