Later in the novel (mild spoiler alert!), Travis' friend Lydia arranges for him to meet the Bloodfall author, G.M. Pennington. The 'G' is for Gary; the rest is a pen name. Gary and Travis hit it right off, and I want to share a slice of their dialogue. Over ice cream, Gary asks:
"Are you a writer, Travis?"Zentner crafts a short, sharp sentence to show how Gary's advice transforms Travis: "Exuberant purpose filled him" (224). Those are words I've already felt proud to wear on my best days as a teacher. The same words now thrill me like Travis, freighted with imagination and books, eager to offload more in writing -- as I've begun to do these last five months thanks to Two Writing Teachers and...
"I mean... I can't write."
"Well, have you ever tried?"
"Then of course you can't! Writing is something you can learn only by doing. To become a writer, you need an imagination, which you clearly have. You need to read books, which you clearly do. And you need to write, which you don't yet do, but should." (221)