Rehearsal Week!

Yes, that exclamation point in the title is totally warranted, even if the permalink doesn’t think so.

Voyager is off to a great start— we’ve got our whole cast and crew here: Heather, Tony, Rachel, Carol, Isaiah, Maia… Plus the brilliant tech crew we can’t do without (as Beyoncé once said, “Who run the world? [Tech]!”). For the first time since my four-year-memory (the average lifespan of a high schooler), we’ve got all our Skits-I-Mean-Interludes finalized and roughly staged in the first day of theater rehearsals. We’re also aiming high this year, in that every CDub will have their pieces memorized for the show. I expect to just cruise (badum–CHING!) along this week, until Friday, our big show.

In the mean time, here are some pictures to keep y’all entertained:

Melodica-Alien and Jules Justus-Alien Hula/Macarena (?) girls Audience

[DR]: Lit Critiques

by Molly (’15)

we practiced critiquing on this painting and its ekphratic poem

we practiced critiquing on this painting and its ekphratic poem

Once a marking period, freshmen, sophomores, and juniors are required to write a review on a piece of published writing, focusing mostly on the craft. I doubt anybody really looks forward to writing these lit critiques, but by now it’s a bit of a rite of passage within creative writing, and this practice improves our essay-skills drastically. Recently, Maia Ipp has redesigned the way lit critiques (formerly lit reviews) are to be written; instead of focusing on the work inside an issue of a literary magazine, we can now choose any work of creative writing, and have the chance to study it in-depth and write a longer, more comprehensive essay.

Today in Creative Writing, Maia, after noting the despairing looks on our faces after being confronted with this new assignment, had us workshop our first lit critique drafts with our writing buddies. She even kindly extended the due-date toMonday so that we can be sure to have greatly improved our essays with the help of peer-editing. Thank you, Maia!

I Want to Make Art, Not Cry with Potato Chips

Picture 89by Molly Bond (’15)
From the Sarah Fontaine Unit

My writing practice generally consists of deadlines and feelings. Because I am a creative writing student, I write the majority of my pieces as an assignment, which tends to be more difficult because given prompts do not always provide the inspiration necessary to write what I consider to be a “successful” piece. Sometimes, though, a prompt will awaken a feeling inside me, and I find the writing to be easy and fruitful, similar to the way I write on my own, when I am free of deadlines and prompts.

Independent writing only takes place when I already have an inspiration. In this way, it is easier to begin writing, but because there is no deadline, I find it harder to finish the piece. Naturally, assignments are a higher priority to me, because grades are constantly on my mind—so my independent writing suffers from procrastination and many of my non-assignment pieces are unfinished. When I do finish these self-motivated pieces, however, I am almost always happier with the result because there is a definite “feeling” in the writing, because I wrote it with inspiration, not with the stress of a due date.

Strangely, my most “successful” pieces have been written in very short amounts of time. My favorite poem was written in under fifteen minutes, although it is three pages long. I suspect this is because my writing is so centered in emotion that in order to express the piece, I need to use a stream-of-consciousness method which can only come with speed and a lack of self-censorship. My worst pieces are generally those that I have needed to edit countless times, sometimes completely overthrowing the plot or changing a character’s motivations entirely, trying desperately to get it to work. It is the effortlessness of the pieces that make them successful.

Process aside, what I truly want to make is writing that makes other people want to write. I believe that art is a self-perpetuating medium; good art causes inspiration, which causes more art to be created. If a piece of mine were to cause inspiration in another artist, and the inspired artist’s work caused inspiration in yet another artist, I would be the instigator of a never-ending art cycle, and how cool is that? Not many people would disagree with me that art is extremely powerful, and extremely important. It connects directly to people’s emotions, and emotions are generally what decisions are based off of. This is why art has changed the world. This is why I want to create art, both directly and indirectly.

My biggest obstacles by far are self-hatred, guilt, and self-censorship—and to a lesser extent, teenage laziness. In order to write something that actually expresses what I am feeling, I need to allow myself to actually feel it, without compulsively back-spacing every time I think I’ve made a cliché. This goes hand-in-hand with guilt, because every time I fail at writing a piece, I feel guilty that I have failed myself, and hate myself for my lack of talent. At this point, on the verge of tears and having accomplished nothing, the inevitable “screw this” pops into my head and I go and eat potato chips while crying over the fact that I don’t write like E.E. Cummings. Thankfully, though, that insatiable urge to write will inevitably wash over me again, and through trial-and-error I will eventually manage to crank out a piece of writing I find tolerable.

I Have a Crush on Flannery O’Connor

by Molly (’15)

I have a crush on Flannery O’Connor.

No, not that kind of crush. A literary crush. We all have one, right? That one particular author who makes us so excited we could kiss the book, or whose sentence structure makes us melt a little inside? Even though literary crushes are common, people seem to think my “thing” for Flannery takes it to the next level. Maybe it’s because I squeal whenever her name is said, or because my eyes go wide when the words “Southern” and “fiction” are used in the same sentence, or because I want to raise peacocks on a dairy farm in Georgia instead of going to college like I’m supposed to.

I don’t know what these feelings are, but they are very strong. This happens to me a lot, but I have never had such intense feelings for a person whom I’ve never even met, whom I have only grown to know through biographies and letters and stories, a person whom I know I’ll never meet due to my cruel placement in the twenty-first century.

The weirdest part is that I can’t even explain to myself why I like her so much. You’d think it would be her fiction, and I’m not denying that her fiction is spectacular (that is such an understatement), but there must be some greater pull. All I can do is guess, but I think my love for Flannery O’Connor stems from the fact that she has opened my mind so much that it hurts. She has introduced me to religion and its importance, removing me from the annoying close-minded atheist position I held previously. This isn’t to say I’m suddenly a militant Catholic, but I’m less sure of the world than I was before, which I find to be a positive change. What she’s done is forced me to think. Flannery, although so removed in time and space, has had a huge impact on my life.

Plus she’s really pretty.

As all of you have no doubt heard

by Molly (’15)

As all of you have no doubt heard, Abigail has stepped down from her duties as Closet Queen. I, as her successor, would like to thank the public for electing me to this vital role in Creative Writing society.

Those of you who are familiar with Closet Queen duties know how highly sought-after this position is. It is an indescribable pleasure to scurry across the hallways, providing utensils for people’s birthdays. The joy I get from opening the door to the Creative Writing closet down the hallway with my very own key is worth the incredible responsibilities this job brings. I know that if I were to ever lose the key, my pride and sense of worth would be lost right with it; therefore, to be extra careful with the public’s trust in my abilities, I keep the keys in a locked box in another locked box in a locker, which is fortified on both the inside and the outside with stainless steel.

I assure you all that I will meet my duties with as much care as Abigail did. Although we will all miss sending her off to retrieve the cake knives and ice-cream spoons, her time as Closet Queen has come to an end, as all things do. As a junior, she was much too old for the job, which is better-suited for a wry and supple sophomore such as me. Although my time in office will also come to an end eventually, I am looking forward to a long and eventful career as Creative Writing’s loyal Closet Queen, and once again thank you all for selecting me.

Slept with a Snake

A snake under my covers
ate and didn’t clean—
crumbs left for me to find
one bright cold saturday—
I find her sheddings scattered
tucked inside the sheets—
sheets that are quite yellowed
from hazy grainy dreams—
she used her tongue to find me
hissing as she rose—
and when the sun fell downward
she snapped me with her jaws—
I cannot shake the feeling
of scales swift up my spine—
and soon the world is melting
in whirring wintertime—
the snow is finally coming
she cannot bask again—
no beaming sun to warm her
no bed to hold her in—
–Molly Bond

CDubs in Our Natural Habitat

by Molly (’15)

No product placement here.

Sometimes, for whatever reason, somebody in Creative Writing decides to purchase a large tub of ice cream during lunch. Instead of eating the ice cream by themselves, huddling in a corner of the classroom, hissing at anybody who dares ask for a bite, the purchaser will usually bring the ice cream into the Creative Writing room to share. “I bought ice cream!” they will declare as they hold the regal dairy product about their head, and soon the classroom will explode into a chorus of hurrahs.

What happens next is like something out of Lord of the Flies. The classroom will separate into two groups—those that want ice cream and will do anything to get some, and those who don’t feel like ice cream is a good enough reward for risking their lives. The latter group will watch in awe and disgust as their peers scramble desperately for the ice cream, using any manner of utensils available, such as straws and chopsticks. Within thirty seconds, the gallon tub will be scraped clean, and the brave ice cream warriors will retreat back to their seats, faces aglow with victorious chocolate stains.

It’s a strange ritual, but it would be of great interest to any respectable National Geographic journalist.

Now for a somewhat relevant xkcd comic


by Molly (’15)

There is a mess of pillows in the Creative Writing room. They are solid-colored squares and circles of red and black, and are indisputably chic. They are often used as headrests during Sustained Silent Reading and can also be used as devices to hide Colin with when Heather takes attendance or to throw at Justus while he is sleeping. By the end of any given day they are scattered across the carpet in a completely unorganized fashion, which Heather finds unacceptable.

Students are asked to fix the pillows, and although this particular ritual is very common and necessary, there is not yet a set of rules on how these pillows should be arranged. Some decide to organize them by color, while others go by size. The way a person organizes the pillows is a direct window into their psyche; some throw them in an indiscriminate order, while others spend many minutes aligning them.

Last Monday, our minds were opened by Tony, who runs an internship. While organizing the pillows, he suggested we spread them across the entirety of the carpet instead of piling them in a corner. The reds went on one side, the blacks on the other, and through this Tony created a work of art that was, as he said, “meant to be seen from a distance.”

Field Day From an Unbiased Expert

by Molly (’15)

Many people are nervous about Field Day. Strolling down the halls at school, one can hear a variety of conversations from different departments, all bragging about how quickly they can form a human pyramid or eat a doughnut off a string. When I hear these conversations, I can’t help but crack a smile. They are such fools. It is completely obvious that Creative Writing will win field day.

I have many reasons to believe this with such fervor. I will do my best to explain these reasons to you; they are all quite simple.

1. The sun is yellow. Yellow is the color of Creative Writing. The sun is also the reason we are all alive. Therefore, if we do not win, there will be no life.

2. Due to yellow’s eye-catching presence, it is very unlikely any Creative Writers will get hit by a car during the night. Therefore, no Creative Writer will be missing on Field Day, giving us a better chance of success.

3. Very intelligent individuals agree with my point, making it even more credible. Even Barack Obama mentioned it:

“It is very likely [that Creative Writing] … will … win [Field Day] … they are [so incredibly talented] … that every other [department] … [pales] … in comparison.”

I hope my explanations will convince those of us that are still doubtful of Creative Writing’s obvious victory.

Pretentious Poets Anonymous: Open to all!

by Molly (’13)

Put on your turtlenecks ladies and gentlemen, and head over to Peet’s Coffee to discuss the wonder of poetry. Read your favorite poems aloud over a steamy mug of espresso while your fedora-wearing friends nod wisely. The poetry here will be everything from T. S. Eliot’s The Wasteland to the sonnet you wrote last night while half-asleep, so come with open ears and a few dollars to purchase a coffee-drink of your choosing. If you wish, the group will gladly workshop your poetry, but remember it will be a very relaxed atmosphere and our attentions may wander. Meet in Room 202 after school on any day you’d like (we meet on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays), and take the bus with Smolly and Justus to the Castro Peet’s. Session timing will be flexible, and will end when feels appropriate. You don’t need to go to all of our meetings to be a member, so don’t feel stressed about scheduling. We hope to see you there!