open access publication

Article, 2023

Children Who Write ’Off the Beaten track’ and What We Can Learn from Them

In: Qualitative Studies, ISSN 1903-7031, Volume 8, 1, Pages 137-161, 10.7146/qs.v8i1.136804

Contributors (1)

Heger, Stine [1]


  1. [1] Aarhus University
  2. [NORA names: AU Aarhus University; University; Denmark; Europe, EU; Nordic; OECD]


In a recently initiated research project, I explore children’s voluntary creative writing and its possible significance for their motivation, engagement, writer identity and capacity to work with other types of writing. In this article I share some preliminary insights from my current field work among these children who write “off the beaten track” in the sense that they spend their free time outside of school writing together and being taught by professional authors. I argue that we can learn a great deal about some basic characteristics of writing, craft, community, and enjoyment in writing from these children and their writing practices. I also share some of my own (human) writing experiences (with reference to Badley, 2019), and I present a thought of not post-, but pre-academic writing: writing that is built on learning the craft of writing, becoming a writer, and working with story and voice early on and throughout education.


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