Today’s Teen Author: Jordyn (J. F. Kirk)


Today I’m pleased to announce Random’s first featured teen writer: JORDYN (pen name J. F. Kirk).

I met Jordyn at Susan May Warren’s writing retreat over a year ago in sunny Florida. She sat next to me while we learned about plot, lies, and making our readers care. She was the youngest writer amidst a group of older women. (And, of course, the cutest with the edgiest, most stylish, haircut ever.) At fifteen, she was learning more than I’d ever learned in my long life.
Jordyn’s been writing since she was ten–for six years. Now sixteen, she goes to school at Perpich Center for Arts Education, in Golden Valley, MN. (Cold country.) She says her goal is to graduate from the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth with an English degree so she can (hopefully) be a book editor. She’s interested in writing, editing, visual arts, music (she plays the tenor sax), and most other artsy things. She says growing up in her small town on the shore of lake Superior has definitely contributed to her artsy-ness.

Jordyn has over 20 novel drafts and has finished two novellas and two novels. She writes poems and has a collection of short stories. She’s been published in her school’s literary magazine before she attended the school.

Her writing routine: While she’s in school she writes on weekends and over her lunch hour. But this June she’ll participate in Camp NaNoWriMo and will speed through 2000 words a day! The rest of the summer she hopes to write 1000 words a day. Check out the math–in three months, 90 days, she could have 120,000 words written. Impressive goals, Jordyn! (No pressure. It’s here in writing now.)

Below is an excerpt of her latest wip (work-in-progress), TELL ME ABOUT FOREVERTMAF is a modern YA, but Jordyn generally writes light sci-fi. If you’d like to contact her please send email

But it’s cool to leave her a comment here, too. Encourage her to make her goal! I know I will!

“Leave, Zoe,” Kaleb says, his deep eyes fraught with worry, “you need to leave.”

“But Kaleb, why?” I question, nervously reaching to comb his hair off his forehead.

“Zoe, stop.” He warily shakes my hand off his head, giving a weak cough, “you need to go.”

“Why, Kaleb? I don’t understand why you don’t want me to help you–”

“I don’t want you to just sit here waiting for me to die, #$&%!#&$!” His thin frame is shaking, his chest heaving. “I want you to remember me for who I was. Not as this weak little boy who’s terminal card has finally run out.”


“Just go. Leave me here to die, because it’s going to happen whether you sit here doting on me or not.You need to live your own life, Z, because I’m not going to be here much longer.” He turns his head away from me, staring blankly out the window that looks over the courtyard.

He’s been at the Minneapolis Children’s Hospital for more than a month now, and they told us a few days ago that there was nothing more they could do for him. He was right, as much as I hated to admit it, he was dying.

“I just don’t understand why you’re so pessimistic, Kaleb. The doctors even said it, there’s a small chance you could pull through this.”

“Exactly, Zoe, a small chance. That means it’s unlikely. It’s not going to happen. I’m dying, Z. I’m dying….”


“No, Zoe. Just, stop, please. I can’t sit here listening to you trying to tell me that I’m going to live just because it will make you feel better. You’re lying to yourself, Z. You need to learn to live without me.

“Listen, they’re releasing me to go home tomorrow, and once I’m back I don’t want you to come by. This is the last time you’re going to see me, Z.”

“But Kaleb–”

“No but’s.”

“I love you!” I cry out, and the words hang heavily in the air. The words we agreed we would never say when we started dating. His eyes widen and he stares at me, mouth agape.

“I don’t want to live without you,” I start, “I need you.”

“Don’t say that, Z. You’re not weak. You need to keep living, you have to. For me.”

For a moment neither of us speak, we just stare into each other’s eyes. Finally, I break the silence.

“Fine,” I sigh, “I’ll go if that’s your final wish of me. But I will stop by your house.”

“Zoe, don’t do this to yourself.”

“I’m leaving, Kaleb. But remember, you can survive alone, but you can’t live alone.”
“Lucky I don’t have to live, so I’m not worried.”

I stop in my tracks, and turn back at him, “Don’t say that. Don’t you ever say that.”

“It’s true.”

“Don’t give up, don’t you ever give up.”

“Just leave, Zoe. Go.”

I sniffle back my tears, and walk out the door, slamming it behind me.


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  1. Dan says:

    Very nice Jordyn, I really liked the way you introduced how the characters felt and the drama they were experiencing.

    I got a little caught up here: He’s been at the Minneapolis Children’s Hospital for more than a month now, and they told us a few days ago that there was nothing that there was nothing more they could do with him. He was right, as much as I hated to admit it, he was dying.

    It appears you have an extra “that there was nothing”

    I love the name of the book also, look forward to reading more.

    Good luck this summer!

    • Thanks for the encouragement, Dan. Jordyn rocks, doesn’t she? I fixed her repetitive words–my bad. Thanks for the heads-up!

    • Thank you so much! I need to go through and edit my piece again, actually. It’s still in the rough. Thanks for the support!

  2. Jordyn, your writing is wonderful! I am so excited to see what journey God has planned for your writing! It is inspiring to see someone your age already working to perfect the excellence of the craft…Keep up the good work!

    • Thanks, Michelle. And I agree. Doesn’t she have a great work ethic for someone so young? Impressive.

    • Thanks, Michelle! I’ve been working in all of my spare time. I’m glad you like it! If you want to hear more, you can facebook me.

  3. Jeanne says:

    Jordyn, so fun to read some of your writing! I’m so glad I met you through Story Crafters and Deep Thinkers. You have a ton of potential. This promises to be a great story. I’m so proud of you for the goals you’ve set. Keep writing! 🙂

    • Thanks for encouraging Jordyn, Jeanne! From one writer to another we know how difficult getting our game on can be!

    • Thank you, Jeanne! Th encouragement is great. I’m so happy I met you too. Well, everyone, I guess. It was a great experience for my sophomore year.

  4. Thank you, Michelle! It looks so nice. 😀

  5. Tamarie Oberg says:

    WOW lil cousin!! I could picture your characters and got caught up in the story – now I want to know what comes next. Does she visit him at home? Does he even make it home? Excellent work! I started writing at the age of 12 – mostly poems, but my goal was children’s books. I have not followed that dream- yet – but have a thought in the making – and I am now a great-grama! I am so proud of you for following your dreams at such a young age and for getting as far as you are with it already. Awesome!! You rock kiddo!!

  6. Bernice(Auntie Ne-Ne) says:

    Jordyn. I am so proud of you,keeping pen in hand & working at something you love.The greatest part of my life has been sharing in the growing up years of all my EXTREMELY talented nieces & nephews.Go forward with your ambitions living life and working always with the future ahead,making the most of every day! Love you,SWEETIE***

    • Thank you Jordyn’s Aunti Ne-Ne! It’s wonderful to see Jordyn’s family offer encouragement. No wonder she’s so motivated and successful. She has many fans!

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