Another Year in the Books

First and foremost, thank you to all who attended today’s reading. Dr. Karlin, our program director, believes it was the largest turnout we’ve had over the past three years. It meant so much to the young writers, instructors, and our program that so many of you turned out to support creative writing and our young writers. It’s been an excellent week here at the Workshop, and this final reading was the best capstone we could have hoped for. Thank you!

By comparison to the rest of the week, today’s events were fairly straightforward. There were no brainstorming exercises, writing prompts, or visiting writers. Today, the young writers broke into groups, read their pieces to each other, received feedback from their peers and instructors, and rewrote.

And then they practiced reading at our venue, the Mary and Morgan Jarvis Wing of the Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art.

You know, it can be pretty worrying, even downright nerve-racking, to read a piece of literature aloud to a group of people, even when those people are your friends. But all of the young writers were so supportive of one another during practices: you could hear the clapping and hooping and hollering from the other side of the museum.

And oh, wait, I nearly forgot! Everyday, the young writers took breaks from their writing with a raucous round of Ah-So-Co, a game of focus and hand-eye coordination. And since it was our last day, a champion had to be crowned.

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Congratulation to Riggs, our 2016 Ah-So-Co Champion! Will he return in
2017 to defend his title? Well, you’ll have to keep reading our blog to find out.

After a little more practice reading aloud, 2:00 pm rolled around, and the reading began. Parents, guardians, siblings, grandparents, friends, K-State professors, alums of the program, engaged Manhattan-ites, and even my girlfriend flocked to the reading—standing room only, folks.

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Three of our alums from past years reconnecting after the reading.

The reading began with opening remarks from our program director, Dr. Katy Karlin, thanking those that made the week possible: The Beach Museum, the English Department at Kansas State, the front office staff for the English Department, Department Head Dr. Karin Westman, and the Dupre family, our incredibly generous patrons. And of course, the parents of our young writers. If it weren’t for their support, the Young Writers’ Workshop wouldn’t exist and thrive as it has.

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And of course, many thanks to Katy! She is this program’s rock. On
behalf of all of the staff: Thank you!

Each young writer read with the team of young writers with whom they spent the bulk of their week.

And those teams were:

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JYACZ!

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21 Lizards!

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The Indecisive Wand-Wavers! 

And together they form:

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The Young Writers’ Class of 2016!

And just like that, the Young Writers’ Class came together
to put on a reading for the ages:

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We should have been handing out book contracts on top of those
certificates.

Complete with a musical number!

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It’s too bad we couldn’t offer a music deal, too.

And just like that, another year of the Young Writers’
Workshop was put in the books. It was, as always, a great one! Thanks again to
all of those who made this year so remarkable. 

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It’s been our pleasure working at the Young Writers’ Workshop, and it has been my pleasure to serve as your Program Assistant!

Dutifully yours,

Hunter Gilson, Program Assistant

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