by Mel Wells
The Literary Arts studio was full for the WITS end-of-residency reading by Lincoln High School students. Twelve students shared their work with an audience of almost fifty parents, friends, teachers, and peers. It was easy to tell which writer each student had worked with, as their pieces were all distinctly different genres.
Students in two of Jordan Gutlerner’s creative nonfiction classes worked with playwright Brian Kettler, and they read stage directions and had friends who read various parts–including an appearance by Abraham Lincoln and a talking dinosaur. Students in one of Henry Hooper’s creative writing classes worked with writer Amy Minato, and both students and Mr. Hooper shared poems and prose written during her residency. One student wrote about juggling and then performed for the audience, which is the first time Literary Arts has featured a juggler at a reading. Students in two of Amanda-Jane Elliot’s senior English classes worked with cartoonist Lisa Eisenberg, and they shared their comics.
WITS writers Kettler, Minato, and Eisenberg all talked about their residencies, and Minato and Eisenberg shared their own work. Eisenberg thanked students for their fresh perspectives on comics she’d read many times before and then shared in class. Ms. Elliot also talked about teaching dystopian fiction along with comics and helped students read some of their work.
We’d like to thank everyone–teachers, writers, students, parents, and friends–for coming to this reading and making it such a delightful evening.