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Iowa. Kenyon. Adroit. Scholastic. YoungArts. Bennington, Patricia Grodd, Foyle. Those names make up a small fraction of the hundreds of teen creative writing competitions, publications, and programs that young writers now confront. When we came of age as teen writers, we were facing that scene alone. We grappled to find our place -- and our voice -- independently. Now, as emerged early-career writers reflecting back on our early forays into the youth writing world, we decided to come together and form the program that we needed back then.

Founded in 2020 by teen writers Ariel Kim and Minnie Zhang, The Incandescent Studio is a one-to-one mentorship program designed to guide aspiring young writers (ages 11-14) into the world of serious creative writing. That means helping our students to refine their craft, give and receive critique, write cover letters, organize their submission plans, and so much more. It's the primer course we needed when we were making the leap from fanfiction writer to teen author. We give energetic, but inexperienced young writers the tools and confidence to share their voices on a national stage and participate in the world of teen programs and contests.

The Studio is a sub-organization of The Incandescent Brand, a national nonprofit agency dedicated to illuminating youth voices through interdisciplinary, arts-based activism. Our program is produced with the help of our sister team at The Incandescent Review, a national youth literary magazine that provides emerging writers with a platform.

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