This Sunday, we hosted our first ever Inklings Annual Gathering to celebrate the launch of the Inklings Book 2019. We had a blast!
In the kickoff keynote, Naomi talked with the attendees about finding the stories (and poems!) that only you can write. We did a few writing exercises to find areas where we each have unique perspective and passion. Youth writers and parents alike walked away with intriguing ideas to pursue.
Next, we broke into groups for hands-on workshops. Such fun!
In Andrew Avallone’s workshop, parents and youth wrote in response to a number of quick prompts and then discussed some of the obstacles writers face when facing the blank page, and strategies to bypass those obstacles.
In Kerry Aradhya’s workshop, writers played around with movement and poetry, exploring juicy words through active games. They also worked together to craft poetic lines, thinking creatively about the best possible words to use.
Celebrating Young Authors
After our breakout workshops, we gathered back in the auditorium to celebrate our Inklings Book youth authors. Attendees said that hearing the youth read their powerful, imaginative, and meaningful stories and poems was the very best part of the afternoon.
When answering questions about their revision process with their mentors, the writers shared how they moved from worry to a sense of freedom. Most were surprised that their mentors highlighted a quality of their work that was highly successful, and helped them build on that strength. They felt proud of how their work had opened up and become even stronger through their guided revision process.
Celebrating the Inklings Book
The Inklings Book itself is a particularly special collection of stories and poems because it not only features the fabulous work of youth authors, it also pulls back the curtain and shares some of their revision process. In interviews and letters from their mentors, the author-mentor pairs each share some of the insight and practical strategies they used while polishing their pieces. We highly encourage you to pick up your copy of the book today! You’re sure to be entertained and inspired.
Speaking of … we want to shout a HUGE thank you to Hicklebees for being our official bookstore partner for the event. Suzi Hough hosted our bookstore so that after the launch, attendees could have their books signed by all the authors. Hicklebees has additional copies of the Inklings Book 2019 on hand, which you can buy through their online portal here.
Join us Next Time!
We can’t wait for next year’s Inklings Annual Gathering. We’re starting to dream up ideas for our next keynote speaker, and brainstorming a collection of workshop ideas so that every youth writer (and parent) who attends has a creative, idea-generating, momentum-producing day. In everything we do, we aim to help youth get the big ideas in their heads and hearts onto the page. As the Inklings Annual Gathering grows, we look forward to this being a day of monumental creativity and joy, to fuel our community through the upcoming year.
Many thanks to all the volunteers, donors, youth authors, board members, and community partners that made our Inklings Annual Gathering such a success!