20 of the best middle & high school writing books

school writing books

If there’s one thing our middle and high schoolers need, it’s more writing practice.

It can get overwhelming trying to figure out what books and workbooks your tweens & teens might need to hone their creative writing skills. So, I thought I’d share 12 of the very best middle and high school writing books with you.

These are the exact books my adolescents use when they want to get the creative juices flowing.

Take a look…

The best of the best: middle & high school writing books

writing books for kids

Spilling Ink

Anne Mazer and Ellen Potter mix inspirational anecdotes with practical guidance on finding a voice, developing characters and plot,
making revisions, and overcoming writer’s block. Fun writing prompts will help young writers jump-start their own projects, and encouragement throughout will keep them at work.

school writing books

Burn After Writing: Teen Edition

Burn After Writing is an interactive book that invites you to face life’s big questions: Who are you now? How did you get here? Where are you going? Some questions are fun, some are deep, and some are just plain random. Approach them with courage and creativity. There are no wrong answers. You can take it deadly seriously, have fun with it, or both. It’s up to you. 


Writing Magic

Levine shows how you can get terrific ideas for stories, invent great beginnings and endings, write sparkling dialogue, develop memorable characters—and much, much more. Best of all, she offers writing exercises that will set your imagination on fire.

writing books for middle school

Summer Journal Prompts for Middle Schoolers

Do you want to reduce summer learning loss and keep your middle schooler’s writing skills sharp over the summer? Journaling is an excellent way for tweens to strengthen literacy skills, process emotions, foster communication, and have fun! With this functional journal featuring 90 different journal prompts, middle schoolers get all the benefits of keeping a journal while having a blast.

Summer Journal Prompts for Middle Schoolers
school writing books

Be a Better Writer

Improve your creative writing by using The Five Facts of Fiction to dream up compelling characters and powerful plot lines that keep your readers reading from beginning to end. Produce rich descriptions with the Tell-Show strategy. Find your voice and translate your passion to the page, so your readers feel it, too.

grammar guide for students

Grammar Girl’s Ultimate Writing Guide for Students

This guide covers it all: the parts of speech, sentences, and punctuation are explained clearly and concisely in Grammar Girl’s humorous and accessible style with this school writing book. Pop quizzes are scattered throughout to reinforce the explanations and Grammar Girl’s trademark Quick and Dirty Tips.

You might also like The Best Books on Essay Writing for Tweens & Teens.

Rip the Page

Here are the ideas, experiments, and inspiration to unfold your imagination and get your writing to flow off the page! This is the everything-you-need guide to spark new poems and rework old stories, including lists of big, small, gross-out, and favorite words, and many adventurous and zany prompts.

school writing books

Lessons from Grimm

In Lessons from Grimm, you’ll do a deep dive into how the Grimms handle key elements of genre, character, setting, plot, fairy tale magic, and theme.

Bonus! The appendix includes comprehensive lists of characters, settings, plots, romance tropes, magic objects, and more, saving you hours of research time.

fairy tale writing for kids
school writing books

The Young Adult’s Guide to Flawless Writing

The most important skill you can have in any field or subject is expressing yourself with eloquence and confidence in writing. The tools and rules needed are simple and easy to remember, and they’re all enclosed within this book. By using this volume, you’ll learn everything you need to know to write in a variety of styles, including essays, short stories, and research papers.

creative writing for teenagers

Go Teen Writers

Learning to write a novel from beginning to end is a challenge. But with this book as your guide, you’ll see that when you have the right tools, you’re capable of finishing what you start. You’ll be empowered and encouraged—as if you had a writing coach (or three!) sitting alongside you.

The Writing Revolution

The Writing Revolution (TWR) provides a clear method of instruction that you can use no matter what subject or grade level you teach. The model has demonstrated that it can turn weak writers into strong communicators by focusing on specific techniques that match their needs and by providing them with targeted feedback.

school writing books

Teen Writer’s Guide

Teen Writer’s Guide is the culmination of years of research and teaching, providing a detailed road map to writing your own story and steering through the detours and pit stops. Perfect for teen writers who have an interest in breaking down the craft of writing in a fun and manageable way.

teen writer's guide
school writing books

Some students just don’t want to share intimate details about their thoughts, feelings, and lives―at least, not with others in a class or group. That’s where Unjournaling comes in. This book’s writing prompts are entirely impersonal but completely engaging for both kids and adults.

The book includes sample responses to all of the questions―a helpful tool for anyone who gets stuck with a topic and wants to see how it can be done!

Take your writing skills to the next level with these fun and creative story starters for teens. This workbook contains over 100 creative writing prompts for middle and high school teenagers. Kids in grades 8-12 will get plenty of ideas for their next Language Arts class, short story assignment, or storytelling project.

Whether you’re using this book in the classroom or at home, these story starters will banish blank-page anxiety and kick your teen’s imagination into high gear. It’s great for teachers, parents, students, aspiring authors, and anyone who loves to write exciting young adult stories.

writing books for teens

Neon Words is a book that will illuminate the writer in you. By using the tools and activities here, you’ll connect the word-organizing part of your brain with your free-ranging imagination—and you’ll love what you’ve captured on the page! It’s an exciting, confidence-boosting, and deeply satisfying experience.

school writing books

Welcome to the Extravaganza! Journal prompts kickstart creativity and inspire personal growth by developing critical thinking, emotional maturity, stress tolerance, mindfulness, problem-solving, and communication—all through the power of play! Story starters pair the real-life experiences of everyday teens with creative writing springboards! Where will your story go? The 8th-grade edition includes common social dilemmas like socializing, gaining acceptance, pushing people’s buttons, building self-confidence growing apart, temptations, and much more!

creative writing books

In this guided journal, #1 New York Times bestselling author Angie Thomas shares advice and best practices for developing a true-to-you writing project. Includes step-by-step craft tips, writing prompts, and exercises. This makes it into our top school writing books because Angie Thomas writes fiction that resonates with young people.

You might like Why Writing Is Important & How to Help Your Child Excel At It.

Grammarly Writing Support

Why should your middle & high schoolers practice writing at home?

Creative writing skills are important for many reasons. They:

  • Foster emotional skills like empathy
  • Improve higher level and abstract thinking skills
  • Promote better organizational skills
  • Build confidence

These middle and high school writing books are meant to inspire your adolescents. Staring at a blank paper can be intimidating for young writers. If you find your tween or teen getting “stuck,” consider purchasing one of these books. They might find the creative aha moment they need!

See 20 of the Best Journals for Kids for more inspiration!

Encourage your young writers to express themselves on paper! Summer makes the perfect time to practice writing skills.

school writing books

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Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Abby

    My kids aren’t at this stage yet but it would be great to refer to this list in the future. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Shanna

    You are a great resource for all sorts of reading and writing information. This is no different. This is an excellent compilation of books for this age group. Thank you for sharing!