Venturing Out of Your Writing Comfort Zone – Word Hunters

Lately I’ve been exploring new genre and trying to write outside my comfort zone, to experience new worlds, characters and types of stories.

That’s why I wanted to review Word Hunters – The Curious Dictionary at my DeeScribe writing blog. It’s a perfect example of where trying new things can take you.

This book, written by Nick Earls is a big deviation from the young adult novels he normally writes. It’s not just for a younger readership, it’s a fantasy adventure, laced with history.

For people who love words, this is a fantastic journey that takes the reader on a tour of discovery, finding out where different words had their origins. It’s the story of twelve-year-old twins, Al and Lex Hunter who are transported into various times and places when they stumble upon an old dictionary, Walker & Fuller’s Curious Dictionary of English.

On their travels they are accompanied by Al’s pet rat, Doug who adds more risk to their journey.

This book is so different from anything else I have read by Nick Earls, but it’s clear that he has immersed himself in the lives of these young characters and their world.

Word Hunters – The Curious Dictionary is a non stop action adventure and for me, it really shows what a writer can do when they step outside their comfort zone.

As someone who is just starting to venture into the world of illustration, I couldn’t help but admire Terry Whidborne’s simple, but character filled drawings.

Word Hunters – The Curious Dictionary is full of well known historical identities and interesting places and times. It provides a fabulous and memorable way for any kid to learn history.

It’s also a fascinating story about words and where they come from and how they got their meaning.

Word Hunters – The Curious Dictionary is the first book in a new series for kids by Nick Earls and Terry Whidborne, and I can’t wait for the next one.

Do you think it’s important to stretch yourself as a writer? If so, what are some of your tips.

Have you ever ventured outside your comfort zone and come up with a story that you’re really proud of? If so, I’d love you to share your experience in the comments section of this post.

I’d love to know your thoughts.

Next week the fabulous Deb Abela will be here to talk about her new Ghost Club book and about how to write spooky stories.

Happy Writing:)



2 thoughts on “Venturing Out of Your Writing Comfort Zone – Word Hunters

  1. Interesting post, Dee. Will have to check out Nick’s new book.

    I’m trying out a new form myself – a verse novel. I found I was tying myself up in knots trying to do it perfectly when I’d barely begun. Catherine Bateson is mentoring me and she gave me some very good advice: play with the form, have fun with it and see where it takes you. I think that’s the key to trying out a new form: don’t stress to much, just have a go and have fun!


  2. Fantastic Marianne,

    Verse novels are so powerful. I agree with you that the key to trying out a new form is to be relaxed and open minded and have fun.

    Good luck with your verse novel:)


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