by Sabrina Brady
I’m sure many of you wonder what the near future holds for the current Creative Writing Seniors. Well, here is a little blurb about Hazel’s plans.
Next year, Hazel Mankin will be attending UC Santa Cruz, where she expects to study writing and literature. However, she is also excited to expand her knowledge of mechanical engineering, world history, architecture, hand-to-hand combat, and cooking. She’s excited to move forward and see where life takes her.
It’s quite simple, actually. Friday is a magical day. It’s a day to be around people you love. It’s a day to spend time with the people you really care about.
And who do you care more about then Creative Writers who have spent the last month slaving over their various 10 minute scripts?
Next Friday, April 12, in the Main Theater at SOTA, starting at 7:30 will be Playwriting Show, featuring the words and acting of SOTA’s Creative Writing department. It took a while to decide, (believe me, it was an intense battle of “play” puns), but our show will be titled Work Hard, Play Harder.
And we will play. We will play hard. Mark your calenders and prepare to get your socks knocked off so hard there’s holes in your shoes.
Creative Writing has a new Facebook page. We are posting blog updates, school news, writing contests, and fun local events (literary and otherwise). You don’t have to join Facebook to view our page.
So come on over, like us, visit us, and feel free to post anything of interest to the CW community on our wall.
by Sophia Kumin (’13)
I know it scares you
to think about
my hands touching
the places on my body
that you’ve condemned
I’ll map out a smile
from belly button to breasts.
you say you can bench 120
so I should lose ten pounds
but if weight were measured
in words without meaning
you’d be sinking to the bottom
of your ocean of discrepancies.
I don’t answer to you or
your 3 AM phone calls
“baby, I want you back”
baby, you want my back
arched in your bed
“I love you”
but you can’t tell the difference
between my birthmarks and anyone else’s
it’s not me you want it’s
everything you couldn’t have
when you had me.
harbor hate in my hips
the same ones you squeezed
like a stress ball
don’t use me
with the same hands you use
to touch yourself
over pictures of people
with perceived perfection.
I want you to know
you don’t hurt me
when you look at
my arms and my waist and my legs
because they’re stronger
than anything you could say.
I know it scares you to think about
me loving the places on my body
that you marked with x’s in your eyes
why don’t you follow my fingers
You feel like
never solid, you still want to be noticed
and the less we pay attention
the more you disappear
clinging to the cement
we blow from
broken skin from all the
salty words we spit at you
when you said we’d
never be enough
but you can’t push me over
when you’re too busy
concentrating on the little things
instead of the sum of my parts
the part of me
that could easily
swing my fist back like a gavel
on your twisted expression
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury
this man is guilty as charged of
of your mother and your daughter
and the people in between,
knock-kneed and shivering
in front of him.
I’m done with
I’m not as good as
I could be without you
and we both know
you can’t deal with
how it was
that never lived up
to any expectations
that looks in the mirror and wants to see
someone better than what you turned out to be.
by Justus Honda
This house has spirits living in mouse-holes,
The kinds you come across
Spinning through a gray-green daydream;
Spirits that live off the disembodied hum
From a refrigerator in the dark,
Spirits that swoop and catch dust motes
In copper waves of lamplight.
This house has disinterested spirits,
All-too-ancient things snoring
In cobweb rocking chairs,
Creatures that fold themselves clothing
From worm-eaten yellow book-leather.
This house has miniscule spirits,
Swimming in the window-dew;
Multitudes of tiny spirits,
Turning the gears of the grandfather clock.
This house has spirits living in mouse-holes,
Laughing in bent lamplight,
Drunk on music.
This year, many Creative Writing students (as well as a theater student) had the joy of winning awards at the 2013 Youth Arts Festival. It was great to go to the Literary Arts Award Ceremony and see everyone read or receive their awards, as well as a see a very important keynote address about the importance of remaining a writer. Congratulations to:
Hosanna Rubio, 1st Place Dramatic Script
Midori Chen, 1st Place Short Story
Molly Bond, 2nd Place Short Story
Colin Yap, 3rd Place Short Story
Hazel Mankin, Short Story: Honorable Mention
Kwesi Turbolizard, Short Story: Honorable Mention
Sophia Kumin, Short Story: Honorable Mention
Zola Hjelm, 1st Place Poetry
Nick Cloud, 3rd Place Poetry
Abigail Schott-Rosenfield, Poetry: Honorable Mention
Abigail Schott-Rosenfield, Non-Fiction: Honorable Mention
In Tony Bravo’s Queer Lit Unit in Creative Writing, we talked about many things. One of these is was gay wit, another, the defensive humor of queer literature, another, the reactionary nature of many writings. But, of all of these lessons, what I took away was the lessons of Hard Rock Island, nee Meth Island.
Tony constantly encouraged us to be outrageous, to present characters so over the top (gay, not gay, platypus, it didn’t matter) that they catapulted the reader into the world of those character’s creation. It wasn’t about fake drama, or melodrama, or even realistic dramatic tension: it was about the drama that the characters brought to the situation, and allowing oneself, as the writer, to be ridiculous about it.
We began a play in class, a play about Hard Rock Island. Tony led us in the practice of character building. With someone at the whiteboard, we shared our ideas about characters we thought should be featured. In our play, the island is made up primarily of meth addicts. There is an opera house there, built in memory of the trailer park that failed because everyone tried to park their trailers on water. A large, blonde, opera singer from the land of marijuana farmers is going to perform there soon. Her gigolo niece is accompanying her. Throw into this mix an 80 year woman who needs some gigolo love, and a prisoner of a South Asian Island Country (never specified which one) who runs the opera singer’s fan site. His name is The Dragon. He believes himself to be the reincarnation of Odysseus.
I, for one, simply cannot wait for the film adaptation. I think Kate Winslet should play The Dragon.
Let the streets be the given.
The buildings are a defining property of the
The x axis is numbered 1–30.
Let the x axis be called Mission.
Points are clustered between 15 and 25.
In this equation, all buildings have a height ≥
2 stories, though not all have two distinct stories.
In f (x), where x are spoken words, f is
Though food varies, it has a probability >50%
of being enjoyable.
Note: Enjoyable ≠ good for
See “Bacon Wrapped Hot Dogs.”
The number of fruterías ≈ 1.5 the number
All baked goods within a panadería need not
be of a single origin.
Within the limits of the stores, sequins
are incorporated in 40% of the clothing.
Outside the limits of the stores,
sequins are incorporated in 0.5% of the
The boarded up movie theaters are
scattered along the x axis, but have no
They are structured absences.
The fire escapes are the vertices.
From these points all other points can
by Hazel Mankin
Class of 2013
Click here for more poems from The Divine Feminine.
History is usually rendered boring and inaccessible through pedantic language and an influx of context-less facts and statistics.
Hochschild removes all that and writes the story of history as if he were writing a novel. His use of imagery and figurative language builds the reader’s interest, his flow of characters make the reader greedy for the ending to find out what happens to them.
Writings about genocide frequently rely on the shocking statistics, blasted again and again in your face, intended for you to get the true scope of the horror.
Hochschild incorporates Congolese mythos around the White Man at that time to speak for the silenced African voices. There are numbers, yes, because those are undeniable, but Hochschild understands that it is not through bolded text and exclamation marks that these points are made–- he makes devastating use of pathos and humanity, narrating the book as if it is an “In Conversation With…” As if he has the utmost faith in his readers to know Right from Wrong, so that he doesn’t yell MURDER IS WRONG every other paragraph.