writing award

So, Carnegie Hall.

So, Carnegie Hall. Let us speak of this - soaring ceilings, itching dresses, the sound of medals clanking against one another. Increasingly, I am realising how special it is to be part of a community in which the first question asked of new friends is not what's your name? but which award did you win?

How could I possibly encompass with words the beauty of being surrounded by those who live and breathe their art?

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards ceremony was something rather magical this year. I am realising these days, as I tiptoe into these communities of creative abundance, that my soul thrives on being around those who immerse themselves in art the same as I do. They are so rare, so difficult to find - and so endlessly gorgeous when I finally stumble upon them.

Afterwards was the Maker Prom, a dance for the medalists. Though I am truly not one for parties, as you lovelies certainly know, I think it was worth it. If only for the experience of meeting the intensely lovely AnQi, with whom I work on The Teacup Trail, in person - to bask in her wonder in real life, to speak with her as if we had known each other for years and years. I find it so beautiful to make connections such as these. The Internet is an utterly incredible medium, but I believe typos and Instagram will never replace Freudian slips and eye contact.

Alas, the loud music & constant balloon popping did not do wonders for my anxiety. I did have the foresight to bring along medication, but I still had to evacuate the premises slightly early. Nonetheless: though it was beautiful to get out of my comfort zone, I think it was a wise decision not to push myself too hard. And besides, currently I am sitting in our hotel room eating room service-provided cheesecake, so that is not a bad ending at all, I think.

I am still reeling, mostly, from the gorgeousness of connecting with souls who spin my own magic, whose hearts beat in time with mine.

I did not expect to find what I did today. One tends to become slightly cut off from the creative world, packed into one's own small box with one's own self-created stardust, stifled by an outside world that knows only greyness. But to step into a room of other softly starlit souls was enchanting. And so very needed.

I think I will go as far as to call us a family. All 900 of us, from the sculptors to the filmmakers to the short story writers to the poets, stuck together with love and Elmer's glue and pencil shavings.

A rather disjointed and slightly eccentric family, a family centred in so many different universes, a family made of hope & kindness & strangers in love. A family that is odd. A family that is unconventional, as art always is.

But a family, nonetheless.





p.s. one more family you may wish to investigate: my small love letter list, comprised of the same radiant, artistic souls. more stories such as this one come once a week, without fail. magic abounds.

I Just Won A(nother) Scholastic Award!!

This week has been a blur of studying and tests and therapist appointments and trying frantically to tie up all the loose ends before spring break starts in two days (AND YOU WILL NEVER GUESS WHERE I'M GOING—I'M SO EXCITED TO TELL YOU TOMORROW).

And so, in the midst of all the madness, I must confess that I didn't actually realise I'd won another (!!) national Scholastic Art & Writing Award until someone congratulated me on Tuesday.

(I know. I know. I am absolutely terrible. If I don't get an email and a Twitter mention and a calendar notification and a post-it note stuck to my forehead, I completely forget I ever entered a competition. If it helps at all, I didn't figure out I'd won a silver medal last year until someone mentioned it in passing... a week after the results had come out. Eternally kicking myself)

This year it's another award for poetry—a gold medal, which, incredible! I'm so insanely, ridiculously excited about this,. Some of my absolute favourite people have won Scholastic awards—including, I might add, fellow Teacup Trail editor / wordsmith extraordinaire / general wizard, AnQi, who also won a gold medal this year!

If you'll recall, last year I got the chance to travel all the way to New York—and truly, I'm still flailing over that—for the awards ceremony in Carnegie Hall as part of my epic sojourn across the US of A. (Hush. Three states absolutely counts as a sojourn. ;)) I've entered the ticket lottery this year as well, so fingers crossed I get to go again!

I'm beautifully overwhelmed by the onslaught of publications & awards lately. Life has been quite kind to me on the writing side of things, I must say. I'll see you all tomorrow—I hope you're having an absolutely wonderful week so far. x