Gordon F. Kells students are thriving as published authors. Earlier this year a group of eight students in grades 7 and 8 were selected as finalists for the Polar Expressions Publishing poetry competition. Now three young authors: Morgan Robertson (Gr. 8), Jessica Moffat (Gr. 8), and Rylee Himmelspeck (Gr. 7) have been published in Windscript, a Saskatchewan high school writing magazine.
Moffat wrote a short story titled “Monkey Bars,” while Robertson and Himmelspeck both submitted free verse poems. Robertson’s is titled, “Body Contact in Ball?” and Himmelspeck’s work is titled “i will.”
Robertson and Himmelspeck’s poems were both works created from an assignment given to them in English class, while Moffat’s short story was a piece she had written at home for herself.
“I want to be an author, so being published now, I can already say I am an author,” Moffat says proudly.
“I thought I’d just go for it, there’s nothing to lose,” Robertson said.
“I just thought I’d try it; it’s my first year writing poems,” Himmelspeck said. “My first poem didn’t make it [into the Polar Expressions competition], so I thought I’d try again.”
Their English teacher, Morgan Wasylyk, explained that she sought out a variety of competitions this school year for students to enter in order to give more meaning to their work: “The purpose was to give students the opportunity to be published. Each month I would let them know what competitions could be entered and it was their choice if they wanted to.”
“It’s nice to find purpose for their writing because I find we have so much we have to teach them and it’s nice to let them have the freedom to write what they want.”
The three students all agreed that some topics in English class aren’t as interesting to write about as others; but, that overall English is their favourite subject in school.