The Blue Pencil Online is an outgrowth of The Blue Pencil, which published its first issue in 1917. Unlike The Blue Pencil, which is a print publication that showcases the work of Walnut Hill's own writing students, The Blue Pencil Online publishes poetry, fiction, and dramatic writing from high school students around the world. We only publish once a year, so extra care is invested in the editorial process.
There are currently twelve teens involved in running The Blue Pencil Online, ranging in age from 15 to 18. They aren't volunteers per se, but rather creative writing majors at Walnut Hill, and serving on the editorial board at The Blue Pencil Online is part of their core curriculum. Beyond that, what ties them together is their passion for literature and for discovering new voices.
The submission guidelines are available online, but could you provide some more information about what type of creative work appeals to you?
Thoughtful, expressive writing that takes care to communicate to its readers. Writing that is both "interesting" and "interested." Original ideas expressed in fresh ways.
Take your time [before submitting] -- it's not a race..."
What is the most common mistake or flaw that you see in submissions?
Being too hasty to submit before really scrutinizing the work first. Take your time--it's not a race, and it's always best to take a piece through a couple of slow, careful drafts before showing it to editors.