Central Academy Home to Award-Winning Creative Writers

Central Academy award-winning creative writers: from left to right, on the couch in the front row, are Granger Carty, Madison McKibben, Sam Bates-Norum, Quinn Veasman, Emily Stavneak, and Julianna Hauri. Back row, left to right, are Reid Wade, Eleanor McKinley, and Montgomery Cason. Not pictured are Lillian Nellans and Allie Rapp.

The Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa is famous as the alma mater of some of the world’s top authors. Thanks to the effort of four teachers, a program at Central Academy is providing support to an even newer generation of top creative writers.

Sherry Brooks, Amy Finnegan, Cate Miller, and Diane Morain have collaborated to form the Independent Study Creative Writing class at Central.

It was recently learned that eleven Independent Study Creative Writing students received regional recognition in the 2013 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards from the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers.

According to ArtandWriting.org, the contest, which is sponsored by the University of Iowa’s Belin-Blank Center, “has an impressive legacy dating back to 1923. Over the years, the Awards have grown to become the longest-running, most prestigious recognition program for creative teens in the U.S., and the nation’s largest source of scholarships for creative young artists and writers. A noteworthy roster of past winners includes Andy Warhol, Sylvia Plath, Truman Capote, Richard Avedon, Robert Redford, Joyce Carol Oates, Stephen King, John Updike, and many more”

The student-writers and their teachers will all be honored in a ceremony at the University of Iowa in March.

The winning writers – along with the awards they earned and the title of the works they submitted – are as follows:

GOLD KEY: The highest level of achievement on the regional level. Approximately 7 – 10% of all regional submissions are recognized with Gold Key Awards and all are considered for national-level recognition.

  • Lillian Nellans, Being Called a Slut Is a Real Bitch (Nellans is also an American Voices Nominee for having one of five works selected from all of the Gold Key award winners as the “Best of Show” for each region.)
  • Granger Carty, Blue Haze
  • Montgomery Cason,  Evoke, Prophetical, Starry Sky, Surreal
  • Julianna Hauri, The City
  • Madison McKibben, Broke

SILVER KEY: Approximately 10 – 15% of all regional submissions are recognized with Silver Key Awards.

  • Sam Bates-Norum, The Belly Dancer’s Putsch
  • Eleanor McKinley, Countdown
  • Emily Stavneak, Five
  • Quinn Veasman, #3; Belle
  • Quinn Veasman, O; You; This River

HONORABLE MENTION: This Award recognizes students with artistic potential. Approximately 15 – 20% of all regional submissions receive Honorable Mention Awards.

  • Allison Rapp, They Call Me Steve
  • Reid Wade, Corners
  • Reid Wade, The Disease of Mental Illness

Students in the creative writing program at Central Academy meet weekly during lunch and work collaboratively in this extended learning program to explore their passion and submit to publications and competitions.