Some of our featured young writers from 916 Ink respond to Sue Staats' questions about writing, books and life!
Meet Autumn. Her favorite subject is creative writing, obviously. After graduation, she’s not entirely sure what she’ll be doing but she might be a teacher. Why did she get interested in writing with 916 Ink? Her mother introduced it to her, saying she should try it out! What was the prompt that inspired her story? It mostly just popped into her head, as a lot of story ideas do. She very much is a non-planner when it comes to stories. She likes making it up as she goes. What’s her favorite book or graphic novel? That’s a hard choice. She really likes the old comics from Marvel and DC and her favorite book would have to be Red Platoon by Clinton Romesha.
Meet Adora Hanson (16 and a junior in high school.) Her favorite subject is drama. She’s always enjoyed being on stage and performing. Her plan after high school is to pursue college and major in psychology. Why was she interested in 916 ink’s creative writing program? Because it was an opportunity for her to openly express her thoughts and feelings in story form. Additionally it allowed her to try new writing styles with different themes. What inspired her story? “Unknown” was inspired by her love of horror and psychological thrillers. Horror has always been her go-to when picking up new books. What’s her favorite book? The Lost written by Natasha Preston, who has become her favorite author these past few years.
Meet Lyndsey (aka Ash) Bridges (14 and in 9th grade). Her favorite subject is math! After graduation, she plans to go to college. Why did she get interested in writing with 916 Ink? She had lots of ideas and wanted to put them to use. What inspired her story? “Hanging Around” blends humor with danger and a great surprise ending. The prompt that inspired it was literally, “As I’m hanging here….” What’s her favorite book or graphic novel? The Twisted Ones by Scott Cawthorn. In fact, the whole series!
Meet Zoe DuBois (almost 14 and in 8th grade). Her favorite subject is hard to choose. She honestly has trouble picking one. She would have to say that she can’t pick a favorite. However, some subjects that she really enjoys are math and writing. In the future, she would love to go to college. How did she get interested in writing with 916 Ink? One of her neighbors had gone to an after-school program. She has always loved writing so she thought it sounded fun. And then she attended a middle school summer camp which she enjoyed very much. What inspired her story? She takes piano lessons with a program called Simply Music and one of the songs she was learning was called “The Mirron”. In her opinion, that really sounds a whole lot like a word so she just assumed it was until her piano teacher asked her if there was a meaning to it because she couldn’t find anything. She got this idea that she could write a story that included something called “The Mirron” to make her own definition of it. What’s her favorite book or graphic novel? She does love the Harry Potter series, and also a series called The Land of Stories.
Meet Dean Balila, in this interview by Nina Larieze -
An Unexpected Love Story: Breaking Up With Regret.
And . . . here are our featured performers from the B Street Theater Studio for Young Actors!
Truman Duren is an actor, author, and 9th grader from Davis, California. Truman has completed five years of summer classes at The B Street Theatre Studio for Young Actors. At Emerson Junior High, he has appeared as the drama teacher in The Monologue Show from Hell, as Gollum in a scene from The Two Towers, and in many other roles in various one-act plays. Before Covid, Truman was scheduled to appear as Peter in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, and as Fyedka in The Fiddler on the Roof. He has completed one novel, The Impossible Luna Jade, and is now working on a sequel in the series, The Awakening of Raven Levonney. He is also working on the script for a new sitcom, titled Drama Class. When not writing or acting, Truman enjoys watching old movies, bicycling the greenbelts of Davis, and playing with his French bulldog, Margot.
Caroline Elliott is a sophomore at McClatchy High School with avid interests in theater and dance. She has had multiple roles in theater productions and short films including Anybodys in West Side Story, Jovie in Elf, and Tessie in The Lottery. Recently, she has enjoyed expanding her acting repertoire in online theater class productions through the B Street Theatre. Caroline hopes to continue to perform as a dancer and actor in high school and college.
Sue Staats is a Sacramento writer. She directed Stories on Stage Sacramento for six years, from 2013 to 2019, and now contributes interviews and blog posts to the website, and cookies to the events (when they aren't virtual). She’s currently looking for a home for her short story collection and getting her feet wet in a couple of other projects, with the hope that eventually one of them will draw her into deeper waters.
Sue's fiction and poetry have been published in The Los Angeles Review, Graze Magazine, Tulip Tree Review, Farallon Review, Tule Review, Late Peaches: Poems by Sacramento Poets, Sacramento Voices, and others. She earned an MFA from Pacific University, and was a finalist for the Gulf Coast Prize in Fiction and the Nisqually Prize in Fiction. Her stories have been performed at Stories on Stage Sacramento and Stories on Stage Davis, and at the SF Bay-area reading series “Why There Are Words.”