by Briana Washington
Why do I write? Writing itself was something I was never very passionate about. It started in seventh grade, when all the students in my school were required to write something and submit it to Young Authors. Most of us decided to write about personal issues, things going on in our lives, the stresses we faced in everyday school. I kept that habit, writing to vent out stress. I kept notebooks and tons of google documents of writing.
I wrote about stress, about tests, about school, about how my family annoyed me during the holidays, about the other students in my school that annoyed me. It kept me sane. I even started a literary magazine at my school. We published our own peer’s works. Their thoughts, their feelings, their opinions, all printed out for others to read. It was a wonderful feeling, understanding them (even just a little), and helping them feel like they had a voice in the school. Everyone wanted their own copy: teachers, students, staff, the endless amount of family members that demanded their own copies (I ended up taking home about ten for my family). It was really encouraging.
Then, while zoning out in my Journalism class, I spotted a flyer in our school, something about a teen literary festival in Chicago. We were ecstatic! Reading poetry, joining workshops, talking to authors about the publishing process, we wanted it all. I sent out emails asking about the event almost six months earlier than the actual time for it. I couldn’t wait to meet other writers just as passionate, and talk to the them about their feelings and emotions conveyed on paper.
I also can’t wait to meet teens just like me! Those who are the poets, the writers, the readers, the creative, the comic book fanatic. Everyone deserves and can find a cozy little spot at the festival! Please be sure to RSVP, the kickoff party is Friday, April 15 at 6 p.m. at the Harold Washington Library Center. (9th floor winter garden). And also be sure to make the actual festival Saturday, April 16 at 11 a.m. at Columbia College Chicago (be sure to RSVP)!