The sun was
brighter than she
had ever seen.
And now this. Santa Fe, Texas. 10 dead in a high school shooting...
- He connected with his subjects and so drew from them great detail and open expression.
- He chose his details well and sparingly
- He used dialogue well
- And he had great first sentences.
[Photo Credit: Hannah Neddo]
The Vermont Legislature has passed sweeping changes in gun control. Click here to read about VT Gov. Phil Scott's plan to sign bill. How do you feel about it?
And how do you feel about the recent demonstration against the restrictions in which hundreds turned out to get free rifle magazines and to protest the passage of the gun control bill? See video above.
Some questions to get you started: Do you write to change something? To clear your mind? To release your anger, your emotions? What happens to your mind when you are writing? What do you write? What happens when you share what you've written? What happens when your writing is published? How does it make you feel?
And take a look at the video to your right to see why some others write.
- something unexpected that happened here, or that you noticed here, at youngwritersproject.org,
- or, a YWP moment that...
- Click respond and make a list (using phrases only) of memorable moments in your life -- an injury, a new sibling, moving ... -- whatever comes to mind. Get as many down as possible.
- Share the list with a partner. Look at their list and ask them to tell you the story about the item that intrigues you the most. Switch -- have your partner ask you to tell a story from your list.
- Write about the...
For the next class, March 19, please bring a photograph or an object that helps you tell a story about an elder in your family or your community. If you don’t have an item or photo, think of a phrase they use(d) or a phrase you would use to describe them as the basis for your story. And try to talk to the elder before you come to class.
This will be something we work on over several sessions. Our aim is to help you create a story of an elder that combines sound and an...
Share your story. Or emotions. Or photos. Or share a perspective that may differ from the majority.
Why did you participate. Why didn't you participate? What do you think should be done to make our schools, our public places, safer? Do you think gun access should be restricted? Why or why not? What should be done? Speak out!
Also consider which two Social Identity items are most important in your education.
Then look at the poem below and write a poem in a similar style, using your own most important social identities.
WHAT IT’S LIKE TO BE A BLACK GIRL
(FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO AREN’T)
By Patricia Smith
America is known as the land of the free, home of the brave. Yet is still a very young nation. Imagine America as a child. What would you tell her or him? How would you describe their behavior? Would you invite America into your home and what for? What games would you play with America? What would you like to see this child learn to and to stop doing? How will you teach America a lesson?
Write a letter to America as if America was a child. What would you say?
Write a poem as Truth. You are truth embodied and personified. You are traveling the world. How are you greeted in different countries? In the forest? By the president? By your friends? By teachers in school? By strangers on the street? By the homeless? By police officers? By your parents? What do you see each day when you rise and look in the mirror? Describe your experience as you travel the world as living truth.
I am the one who...
Finish the sentence, repeat it or extend it, turn it into a poem.
Feel free to paste in the poem you started when MGMC led your workshop at Edmunds.
Use specific detail (but don't use names) about something that happened, or an issue that has you riled up, or an injustice in your life. Could be small, could be large.
Feel free to share what you wrote at the MGMC workshop if you wish and start from there.
What makes you different than others? What's the most important single difference? Now think about that difference as a power, a super power. How do you use it? Write about a time you could use it. Write a poem.
Share what you wrote in the workshop with MGMC if this the challenge you responded to.
So click RESPOND, give it a title and genre, paste it in or create it in 'Body' and save.
As with all these challenges, give some feedback to your classmates.
Girls, write about what kind of girl you think you are. Boys (or gender nonconforming persons), write about the women and girls in your life, and how they have helped you.
Tag it with the hashtag...
This challenge will take some time. But it will be worth it. View either or both of the videos here and write what comes to you -- an essay, a reflection, a poem, a story, a rant. Whatever. Create visual art and share it. Create an audio piece. Again, whatever. Just react. Because 50 years ago, April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King was gunned down and his words remain relevant and important today. For all people.
The top video is the full sermon Martin Luther King made on Feb. 4,...
(Photo credit: YWP Photo Library, Livia Ball)
Watch this video.
Write about what it makes you think. What are you going to do? What's next?
Facebook co-inventor and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before Congress on Tuesday and Wednesday. The House members were a good deal more pointed and direct than the Senators.
Above is the near full version of his 6-hour testimony in the House. Below is a NYTIMES distillation of the Tuesday Senate hearing and below that the full version. Watch some of it. Speed through or sit for a while. RESPOND and write your reaction -- a rant, a poem, a story, whatever.
(UPDATE: note that we have created more challenges related to the shooting. Go to https://youngwritersproject.org/challenges )
Over time, the identities of the victims of mass shootings fade away and become a number, become a word. Think of the victims as individuals. Write a letter for one of them. Here is a link for summary bios of the 17 victims of the February 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.
High school and middle school students around the U.S. are having their voices heard. Will it be enough? Will you be heard? Can you bring change?
Write a letter to your Senator, Congressman, state legislator, governor. Tell them what you think they should do. Post a copy here.
ALSO, put the hashtag #writersforchange if you'd like to be part of a YWP community project to send a lot of writing to political leaders being...
Do you feel safe in your school? Why? Or why not? Tell a story. Write a poem. Write an essay. Tell people what it's like when there is a Code Red drill.
The difference in the aftermath of the Parkland, Florida, shooting is that people are paying attention to articulate, passionate high school students. Does this give you hope? Do you feel you are heard? Are there other issues you feel you need to voice?
Another National School Walkout Day is being organized, in memory of the students shot at Columbine High School.
Are you participating? Are you including discussion of and action around the broader issue of youth gun deaths in urban areas?
Write about what you are planning, thinking, wishing -- or, when the day comes, what you did. Include pictures and sound.
Humor would be nice, too.
Why is that man wearing a red nose? And how did the burning Swastika get there? And what would Alice do with Dennis?
- And, below, why is he jumping? what's the conversation between two women waiting...
Some things to consider....
Who are they?
What makes them real as opposed to others who may not be?
What is your call a call to do?
What do you want them to know?
What do you want them to do about the condition of the country?
How should they treat their fellow Americans?
Who will answer the call?
[Photo Credit: Aliya Schneider]
Prizes include online and/or print publication in:
- The Voice
- The Crow on Medium.com
- Burlington Free Press
- Vermont Public Radio and Vermont Digger
[YWP Library; Photo by Grace Safford]
[Photo Credit: YWP Photo Library, photo by Shannon Ripp]
Write a personal, true story about an experience, person or place that defines your Vermont. The best stories will be submitted to Vermont Life magazine and, if accepted, you will receive an offer of payment and be scheduled for publication. Word count: 300-750 words.
(Photo credit: YWP Photo Library, photo by Kevin Huang, YWP Photoshop)