Veronica Roth recently went back to her old high school to talk to aspiring writers and inspire them to keep writing. We have and excerpt of her talk thanks to Barrington Courier. Review! Check it out below:

“When I was little, I liked to play pretend, but you grow out of that,” she said. “Then I realized that I don’t have to act it out with stuffed animals or with my friends. I can actually write this stuff down.”

Roth credited Lois Lowry’s “The Giver” for introducing her to the world of dystopia, but noted that she didn’t set out to take “Divergent” into the imaginary and unpleasant setting.

In fact, Roth intended “Divergent” to showcase a world that she would like; a place where people are held responsible for their actions.

“No one should put me in charge,” she joked.

To encourage young writers, Roth provided some simple advice: Keep writing.

“One of the struggles of becoming an author is to open yourself up to the world,” she said. “Writing isn’t easy. It never has been. But if you love it, just keep doing it.”

“Fuel for writing is everywhere,” she added.

Roth also encouraged young writers to share their work with others and ask for feedback.

But the writing process, she explained, can be accomplished in unique ways.

Roth writes many of her gut-wrenching scenes while walking on a treadmill with a writing station set-up on top.

She highlighted a scene at the end of “Divergent,” when the main character, Tris, reunites with someone from her distant past.

“It was so intense to write that scene,” Roth said.

For the full interview and more pictures check out the rest of the article here!