darnielleMountain Goats musician, alum and national writing juror of the Scholastic Awards, and now, first-time novelist John Darnielle will be in conversation with humorist John Hodgman on Monday, September 15 at Manhattan’s eclectic arts venue, Le Poisson Rouge.  To learn more and reserve a seat, click here.

Darnielle is on a book tour, promoting Wolf in White Van, a gripping and often mind-bending adventure featuring two teens caught in a role-playing game that crosses over into the real world—and when disaster strikes, the game’s  reclusive creator is called to account for it.

For more about the book, click here.  Here’s what John Hodgman had to say about it:

Wolf in White Van is utterly magnificent. I was surprised and moved and amazed page after page after page. I am talking about audible gasp type stuff, and also deeper, interior gasps of reflection and astonishment and gratitude. This story is a hard and beautiful human puzzle that will be a pleasure to solve and resolve over many readings. And you can quote me on that. Every day. That is all.”

Pratt for Blog

The Art.Write.Now.2014 National Exhibition at Pratt Institute’s Pratt Manhattan Gallery.

On June 11, writers and an appreciative audience gathered for Words and Lines: a free reading amid 2014 National Medalist artwork at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery. It was an evening that paid tribute to the Awards’ three criteria: originality, technical skill, and clear evidence of personal voices and visions!

The program featured award-winning author and  director of Pratt Institute’s Writing Program Thad Ziolkowski;  Past Portfolio Gold Medalists Lashanda Anakwah, Haris Durrani, and Emma Goldberg. The editor of The Best Teen Writing of 2014 , 2004 Portfolio Gold Medalist and fantasy author Hannah Jones served as emcee and even shared some of her work with the crowd!

Poetry and prose echoed throughout the Pratt Manhattan Gallery’s exclusive exhibit of 2014 Scholastic Art & Writing Award-winning photography, ceramics and glass…and we know that as you read this, you wish you were there. Two of the readers, Lashanda and Emma, graciously agreed to share excerpts of their work.  Read More


Guest post by National Student Poets Program (NSPP) Coordinator, Jeanette Anderson

Growing up in New York City, I remember reading poems on the subway and bus rides to my school located on the outskirts of Manhattan Beach. I braced for the winter winds to whip the water around the school’s steps. I carried Adrienne Rich. I carried Kenneth Koch (especially his great love poem “To Marina”):

Every detail is everything in its place (Aristotle). Literature is a cup

And we are the malted. The time is a glass. A June bug comes

And a carpenter spits on a plane, the flowers ruffle ear rings.

I am so dumb-looking. And you are so beautiful.

This weekend and nearly a decade later, I found myself on the subway with the 2013 National Student Poets. Read More

October 3 AYAW Book Launch[3]

On October 3rd, we partied like it was 2013—The Best Teen Writing of 2013, to be specific! Our book launch party for the newest edition of our annual anthology of Award-winning writing featured guest host, WNYC Radio host Brian Lehrer, who interviewed Loretta López, 2010 Portfolio Gold Medalist and the book’s Editor. Here’s a brief excerpt:

In your introduction you write about the role of technology today and our quick access to information. Can you speak more about that?
A lot of our experiences right now are very passive, about just watching. What I love about this book is that every writer in this book took the time to sit down, face themselves and pay attention; be frustrated in the process of writing and I like that.

Did you find frustration in the writing process? You told me you are writing a novel. What is your approach to writing?
I realized a while ago that if you just wait for inspiration to hit you you’re going to wait a long time. I write every day for at least two hours– I force myself and set my alarm. Then I go out and see people, return and dive back into a fantastical world I’m creating. Read More

Stopping Time by Alison Concannon, 17, Omaha, NE. 2013 American Visions Award.

Alison Concannon. Stopping Time. Grade 12, Age 17. 2013 American Visions Award, Drawing.

Take time out of your busy schedule to join us for a signature event: Words & Lines! This FREE reading at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery will feature Award-winning poet (and national poetry juror) Aracelis Girmay; Fantasy Novelist and 2004 Portfolio Gold Medalist Jaida Jones; Poetry Board Member, The Harvard Advocate, and 2011 Portfolio Gold Medalist Kevin Hong; Founder and Editor-in-chief of The Adroit Journal and 2013 Portfolio Silver Medalist Peter LaBerge.

You’ll hear poetry and prose, enjoy refreshments, and have the unique opportunity to peruse the Pratt Manhattan Gallery’s exclusive exhibit of the 2013 Scholastic American Visions and Voices Awards! Read More

Gala post Photo 2

By Timarie Harrigan, Manager of Development & External Relations

This is a busy time of year for the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, but a good busy. We’re getting ready to celebrate this year’s class of creative teens, our 90th Anniversary Year, and a bright and growing future for the Awards. (Did you know we hit a record number of 230,000 submissions this year?) This year is big, and we’re looking forward to doing it up in a big way at our 90th Anniversary Benefit on May 31.

Here are the basic deets:

90th Anniversary Benefit & Silent Auction
The Edison Ballroom
May 31, 2013

7:00pm – Cocktails & Silent Auction
8:00pm – Dinner & Program
9:30pm – After Party (yay!)

With so many influential, creative Scholastic Awards alums, our Silent Auction will be featuring alumni work exclusively. Read More