Write Wild: The Demon Girl

Eighth-grader Keziah Myers joined us last month for our very first Write Wild! workshop at the peaceful and rustic Writing Barn. Surrounded by trees and quiet and deer wandering the periphery, we spent the morning exploring the art of storytelling — how to think about characters, force them into problematic situations, and keep our readers on the edge of their seats. Keziah’s story was anything but rustic! And all the better for it. Here, she offers an excerpt of the story she created that day, ” The Demon Girl.” There’s plenty of drama going on behind the scenes in this tale, as the narrator seems to have fingers in many pies (and a few bottles).

The Demon Girl

– an excerpt
Diana’s drinking glasses shattered when she growled. She really wished they wouldn’t do that. It was a pain to clean up the shards. Not to mention that she had to replace her glasses often. And, of course, if Martini, her cat, was in the kitchen when they exploded, he would bolt out of there and claw his way up her back to sit on her shoulder. So yeah, Diana tried not to growl.
It was hard because she really didn’t like yelling too much either. Yelling splintered all the wood in her flat. But… yelling didn’t run the risk of shattering her shot glasses. Because, really, with all the complications the demons had been making, she needed a drink every now and then. She normally had these after a failed negotiation with some big name down there. She really wished she could have them during, but the demons didn’t like it very much.
It was ironic, she would muse (normally over a cup of coffee or a shot of whiskey), that people thought drinking was a devil’s game. They actually hated it. Of course, not that there weren’t guys down there (there was only one lady who had powers she wanted, and Diana didn’t have the money to get to Scandinavia) who couldn’t drink her under the table, but those guys, the ones who she could negotiate with in a bar, they wanted things from her. Things she wasn’t willing to give. Yeah. Things were complicated.
Keziah Myers
Murchison Middle School, 8th Grade

Write Wild: The Two Bears

Fourth-grader Nina Stockinged joined us for our first Write Wild! workshop exploring the art of storytelling. Nina’s creation inhabits a community of bears where white and black are just colors. As you’ll see, Nina’s story reminds us that even if we’ve been told we can’t get along, one meeting can change our views for the better.


The Two Bears

Once upon a time, deep in the forest, there lived some white bears and some black bears. But the white bears and black bears lived in separate parts of the forest. The white bears’ village had only white bears, and the black bears’ village had only black bears. They never saw nor spoke to each other, and for a long time that’s how they lived. Each group thought bears of different colors would not get along with each other.

Then one day, a young white bear went to pick raspberries at the far end of the forest. He had tied a ribbon to a nearly-ripe raspberry bush the day before, but when he arrived at the bush, he saw a black bear standing next to it.

The white bear thought to himself, I tied that ribbon to that bush so I could pick raspberries from it, but I’m sure the black bear has already picked my raspberries.

The white bear was disappointed. He was looking forward to picking those raspberries. He sighed and started off in search of another bush, but the black bear called to the white bear: “Wait!”

When the white bear turned, he saw the black bear smile. She asked, “Are you the one who tied this ribbon to this bush?”

“Yes,” the white bear answered. He couldn’t understand why the black bear would ask such a question. Perhaps the black bear was being cruel, he thought, taking his raspberries and teasing him for tying that ribbon to the bush.

This made the white bear very sad, but then the black bear smiled kindly. “Good thing I asked. These raspberries must belong to you, and they’re very ripe for picking.”

The white bear was surprised. After taking a good look, he realized the bush was indeed the way he’d left it the day before. None of the raspberries had been picked. Cocking his head in amazement, he said, “I don’t understand why you didn’t pick the raspberries.”

“Well, there was a ribbon tied to this bush,” the black bear said, “so I thought it was already spoken for.”

“Even so,” the white bear said. “If someone else had picked the raspberries, I would have never known,” said the white bear. But the black bear smiled at him and continued, “If I were looking forward to picking raspberries and somebody else picked them first, I would be very disappointed. That’s why I decided to guard this bush.”

The white bear was very embarrassed. He had just assumed that the black bear had stolen his raspberries. Then, when he almost thought his mistake had hurt the black bear’s feelings, he became very sad. He’d always thought that because they were different colors, white bears and black bears could never be friends. But now that he’d met the black bear, he understood that colors didn’t matter. Bears of different colors could be friends if only they could meet and talk.

“What’s the matter?” the black bear asked with concern.

The white bear was so deep in thought that he had grown silent.

“Does your head hurt?” she asked. “Do you have a fever?”

“No,” replied the white bear. “It’s not that.” Then he turned to the black bear and said, “Let’s pick these raspberries together and share them equally.”

“These raspberries are yours,” protested the black bear.

“But you guarded them for me,” replied the white bear.

Then the white bear smiled at the black bear and said, “Will you be my friend?”

The black bear looked surprised at first, then smiled. “Of course,” she said.

Nina Stockinger
Spicewood Elementary, 4th Grade