Do you want to be a writer? Then New York is where it's at. New York City has more writers per square foot than any other city in the United States (unofficially). It is the country's capital for publishing, with Random House, Newmarket, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster, and other big publishing houses having their headquarters here. And it's a great place to be an artist, with its museums, poetry readings, art schools, and plays. If you're not living in New York now, though, don't worry; there are plenty of ways to get a taste of New York or to plan to live here in the future.
- Come to write in New York - The first opportunity to consider is Teen Ink's own Summer Writing Program. In this fantastic program, you'll be able to take writing classes with real writers as teachers, tour the city's inspiring cultural sites, and have your work read and critiqued. You'll even have a chance to have yours truly as a chaperone and writing mentor.
- Find out more - You can also learn more about what the city has to offer on your own. A common misconception is that all the writers are in Manhattan; actually, most of them live in the super-trendy borough of Brooklyn. Check out some of Brooklyn's many literary hotspots in this collection of 100 literary sites.
- Read The New Yorker - Still hungry for more info about New York? The best way to get your foot in the door of a New York lifestyle is to check out one of the most prestigious magazines in the country, The New Yorker. Every week The New Yorker has thoughts on New York life, as well as some of the best fiction and poetry in the country. Most of its articles are free on its site. Why aren't you reading The New Yorker yet?
- Read some New York novels - many classic novels are about the great city, and they may prove inspiring to you. Many of the great ones are about teens, too. Try reading The Catcher in the Rye, which is a moving book, and also reproduces several areas of Manhattan with atlas-like accuracy. It's practically like being there to read about Holden Caulfield's wanderings.
So don't fret if you're not in the big city - it might be a place you'd like to try living in when you grow up. Most people currently living in the city weren't actually born there. It's because so many people from other states and countries come here with dreams of their own. Maybe your dream will be to come to the bright lights too!