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The 2013 National Student Poets: Aline Dolinh, Sojourner Ahebee, Nathan Cummings, Michaela Coplen, and Louis Lafair.

Ten years ago, when I was still in high school, I received a National Portfolio Gold Medal from the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards for a chaotic clump of self-reflective poems I’d cobbled together and hoped would say something about who I was and who I hoped to be. I still remember the events that followed, although they’re hazy and hot and filmed over with the steam rising from cement on a New York afternoon in June: a start-of-summer, end-of-high-school blur that now revolves mainly around the numerous hors d’oeuvres I ate and how sore my feet were at the end of it all.

At that time, there was no National Student Poets Program—the program itself is only in its third year. Now, having returned, year after year, to volunteer during the National Events for the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, and editing The Best Teen Writing twice I’m the coordinator for the program. Read More

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.”

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Inaugural National Student Poet and Northeast Representative, Claire Lee, returns to the AYAW blog to interview the 2013 Class of National Student Poets for her “Poets on Poets” series.

This week’s interview is with National Student Poet and West Representative, Nathan Cummings!

Read More

Loretta Lopez: THE BIG IDEA.

Today we bring you the second installment of THE BIG IDEA with writer and alum Loretta Lopez! Loretta, a Guadalajara native, was a 2010 Gold Medal Writing Portfolio recipient and the editor of The Best Teen Writing of 2013. Currently residing in Austin, TX, watch the video above to hear this young alum talk about her inspiration, current projects and a sometimes collaborative creative process!

You can also take a look at Loretta’s tips for staying cool and creative in the summer months HERE!

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Inaugural National Student Poet and Northeast representative, Claire Lee, returns to the AYAW blog to interview the 2013 Class of National Student Poets for her “Poets on Poets” series.

This week’s interview is with National Student Poet and Midwest Representative, Sojourner Ahebee! Read More

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Studio 360′s Summer Poetry Challenge: Battle of the High School Bards

We want to hear your voices! Don’t leave your best work inside a notebook – send it to us!

We’re looking for poetry by current or rising 9th to 12th grade high school students. Studio 360 will post a featured submission online every week, and rising poetry star Dorothea Lasky will pick a winner live on the show!

Your assignment
Write a poem on the theme of summer. Your poem can be rhymed, free verse, blank verse, spoken-word, whatever you choose.

How to Submit
All rising 9th to 12th grade high school students are invited to submit. You do not need to have won a Scholastic Art & Writing Award to participate. Both text and audio submissions will be accepted. Visit Studio 360 to upload your work.

The deadline is August 18. Read More