What If? is a Creative Magazine for Canadian teens ages twelve and up. It was founded in 2003 and is published out of Guelph, Ontario. While it is produced by adults the content is almost completely created by teens under the age of nineteen. The magazine includes an assortment of fiction, poetry, editorials, book reviews, interviews, art and photography. One of the adult written columns includes the Editor’s tip recommendations to help young writers improve their skills. A few word games and contests help lighten the load.
The magazine’s goal is to provide a venue for young writers and artists to experience the world of publishing first hand. Their secondary goal is to provide a platform for educators to encourage the same young people to read and create alongside their peers.
The magazine is published four times a year and is available through some classrooms, libraries, newsstands (Indigo/Chapters) and a reasonably priced yearly subscription of $24.99 (CAN). One of the good things about this magazine is that it promises not to be chalked full of advertising and “fashion or dating tips”.
The website has a number of different content areas available. Readers can get a taste for current and previous issues as well as look at some of the overflow that never made it into the magazine because of space constraints. The “Educators” area has writing related tutorials, tips, and lessons plans in .pdf format. The lesson plans include writing starters, character sketch template, hero’s journey template, poetry, projects, dialog and writing as therapy. Most are about one page in length and are easy to read and understand. Another section called Write Angles has a series of articles for the young aspiring writer who has been published in the magazine. As well as hints and tips on writing and getting published. These are .pdf format as well. Other articles include prompts, inspiration, writing groups and writer’s block. Out of all of the articles available only four or five were missing so there is a good selection worth searching through for basic information.
If you have some teens between 12 and 19 years of age encourage them to submit some of their work for consideration. In depth submission guidelines are on their website. They are always looking for fresh content from writers, illustrators and photographers.
This piece was first posted on 1/11/2008 at Literary Fiction, BellaOnline.