Captain’s Log: Week Two

Creative Writing Workshop with Kerry’s Place Autism Services.

We’ve landed and hit the floor running. This afternoon’s workshop was a whirlwind of ideas, readings, blasts (prompts), games of catch, newcomers, outsiders and cupcakes. I was so proud of our group today. We welcomed two new members into the fold, and both were willing to work and share from the get-go. As a group, we managed to come up with a name for our ship (101X). We also agreed upon a name for our planet (Upotia) and a name for the city that we will inhabit and populate (Atleor).

Maybe it was the smell of spring in the air, or maybe it was the fact that the writing group was starting to feel like more than just a group of people that got together to write- either way, something special happened today. Great things happen when you get a group of young people together and give them a chance to speak, to listen, to think and to share. These kids have so much to say, and I’m humbled in their presence. The focus of today’s group was ‘character’ and these kids have plenty of it.

When we talked about how they wanted things to be run on the new planet, they wrote about wanting a place where bullying didn’t exist, where everybody was equal, where people had to write at least one thing everyday. One girl wanted it to be a place where she “could be thirteen years old forever.” Another one wanted it to be a place where “everybody gets a chance to be themselves.” They were writing about what they wanted to see on Upotia, but you know they were writing about what they wanted to see right here on planet Earth.

(I’d like to think we can offer these things- if only for an hour and a half each week)

At the end of today’s workshop, we discovered that we may not be the only species on the planet. Things are going to get real hectic.

Stay tuned.





Below you’ll find a character profile for one of my characters for my next book See Me After Class. She is the only character that I have not christened with a name. I’m not sure why she goes nameless, she just does. After you have read her profile, come up with a name (FIRST AND LAST) that you think best suits her personality. Include the name in the COMMENT section to the blog post. I’ll check out your choices and declare a winner by the end of the month (February). If the name you’ve come up with is the name that I use, I’ll hook you up with a signed copy of the book when it comes out, and give you a big thank you in the acknowledgment section. Good luck!

She is approx. 29-30 years of age; has been teaching for 5 years. She keeps a diary of her school related activities and sometimes delves into her personal life. She loves what she does for a living and wishes sometimes that people would give her, and the teaching profession, the respect she thinks they rightfully deserve. She is waiting for her boyfriend to propose, and is beginning to think that he won’t. She loves her students and thinks that they give her more than any adult in her life. She develops a relationship with Stella (another character in the novel) and is worried that Stella is not going to make it to the end of high school. She is growing increasingly frustrated with the education system and is beginning to think that it might be time for a change, though she cannot see herself doing anything else. She is forced to make some tough choices. Will she willingly make the move, or will the system push her to the edge?

She has a sweet tooth, and cries at sad commercials. She is second generation Italian and likes to spoil her cat.