This was my second summer leading a workshop in Wimberley and, once again, I had a fantastic time with the talented young writers there.
The theme of the week was "Where do we begin?" and we explored multiple ways that one can start a story: with a character, a first line, a setting, a genre, or even an emotion. No matter how they began, the kids came up with great material.
Please enjoy their work below:
Writing Under Water
by Emily Cook
Writing under water is hard. My pages keep getting soaked and ripped. I’m being swarmed by sharks. More and more keep coming. I think there is somewhere around 8 sharks. There’s one coming towards me and I think it might . . .
Writing inside of a shark is not fun. I hope he spits me out someday because it is hard to write without sun.
I awoke to the dark. After months of deep sleep, I was surrounded by a thick coat of mucus. Confused, I kicked and squirmed my way out of what appeared to be a chrysalis. I was in an abandoned subway station. I found some clothes and walked out into the cold. I tried to hail a taxi but the driver didn’t stop. I would have to walk home. People pointed and threw things at me for no reason. I said, “Do you guys find this funny, because it’s like really not, you know?” Hmmmm, that was strange . . . My voice was different. I had to get home fast. I stormed up the stairs and unlocked my door. I walked into the bathroom, scared of what I would find. I said, “Oh my God . . . I’m . . . It can’t be . . . I’ve become . . . Nicolas Cage.”
Brownie the old tree was sitting, or shall I say standing, all alone. He was very parched and needed something to drink. The sun was making it even worse! Brownie’s leaves were falling and branches were breaking. It was dawn and he was getting tired. His eyesight was failing because he was an old man without glasses. How would he have glasses? He saw nobody and nobody would ever talk to him, because he was a tree.
Brownie was looking off into the distance when he discovered a young girl named Bentley. Bentley strolled on her wheelchair to the old tree. She was sighing from the long difficult day she had trying to get someone to talk to her.
“Hello, young lady,” Brownie said in a deep monotone voice.
Bentley quickly turned her head and said, “Hello? Is that you?”
“I believe it is,” responded Brownie. Brownie saw a water bottle in Bentley’s hand. He was sighing for dramatic effect. “Huh . . . huh.”
“Oh, are you thirsty?”
“Of course, I’m thirsty. Look at me. My leaves are falling. My branches are breaking.”
Bentley poured all of her water onto Brownie.
“Thank you very much!” said Brownie in a less monotone voice.
Everyday Bentley would always go visit Brownie for water and to talk. Bentley and Brownie became closest friends and neither of them were friendless or lonely ever again. Soon after, Brownie was a healthy tree.
I am from a big place where I can run and play, the ground is rough and dry without the sweet tasting rain. Where it smells of cedar blowing in the wind. I’m from a place where the stars shine bright and the sound of crickets fill the night. I’m from a place where people are kind and loving. From a place where lessons are learned on your own. I’m from a little piece of heaven.