Once again people are giving me strange looks. Why Wattpad? And, indeed, what pad? Wattpad, as in wattage, the kind that makes the lights turn on. "But Margaret," you can hear them whispering. "You're a literary icon at the height of your powers; it says so on your book covers. Why are you sneaking out with an online story-sharing site heavy on romance, vampires and werewolves? You should be endorsing Literature, capital L. Get back up on that pedestal! Strike a serious pose! Turn to stone!"
Maybe my dates with Wattpad are a bit undignified. But at my age you can afford to be undignified. You're free to explore, and to guinea-pig yourself, and to stretch the boundaries.
On www.wattpad.com—using your computer, tablet or phone—you can post your own writing. No one need know how old you are, what your social background is, or where you live. Your readers can be anywhere. And if you're worried about adverse reactions from your teachers, your grandmother, or others who might not like you writing about slavering zombies or your relatives, you can use a pseudonym. You can be FlamingLeprechaun and represent yourself with a picture of a bat or a spoon: the internet lends itself to surrealism. Then you can post stories about Pod People or affairs with smouldering hunks undead for 2,000 years, which beats "My Summer Holiday" every time. Not only that, you'll have readers who leave encouraging comments on your message board, thus boosting your morale.
Think of the outlets young writer...