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Monday, July 20, 2015

Day 2: Hank Phillipi Ryan

Day 2 of Whales, Tales and Trails was such an eventful day!  A highlight was the writing seminar presented by Hank Phillippi Ryan.  Hank is a reporter at a major Boston television station; her bio and list of awards is too long to repeat here!
 "Help Me Hank!" is a local watchword.  Hank's mysteries have won major awards, including the Agatha for Best First Novel for "Prime Time."

Hank told the girls about her growing up days in Indiana and how Girl Scouting was a major force in her life.  She reiterated what so many adults know - you may not fit in as a young person with the prevailing culture, but if you follow your heart and keep trying, you can be a successful adult - and Girl Scouts can be a major force in the lives of girls.

After a rundown on the golden age of mysteries (Agatha Christie!) and the different genres of novels, Hank and the girls took the simplest outline of a novel, beginning, middle and end, through several successive levels of detail.  As each level was outlined, the girls wrote sentences that might fit into those parts of a novel.  Here's a few notes I took.

Act I: WOW! (The hook!)
Act II: So what happens? (decision, sacrifice, choice, giving up, getting.)
Act III:  WOW!  That's why. (arrive, win or lose, finally speak, illuminate the theme, happily ever after.)

The girls broke into small groups or pairs, and outlined their novels.  Look for some great YA literature to be written by Girl Scouts in the next few years.

Hank gave the girls her email address and told them they could consult her not only about writing but for any kind of advice they needed.  Truly a great and inspiring day for all of us!

If you'd like more information about Hank and her writing, click here!


  1. This is so terrific! Thank you so much for this lovely blog! Every single scout was amazing--hilarious talented, smart and imaginative. Truly--an inspirational and perfect day. Keep in touch, everyone!

  2. Such good news! More writers! We'll never run out of books to read!