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Time to create, time to write

'Same Book, Different Stories: Short Stories from the Class of 2016'

Published: Monday, May 26, 2014 2:50 p.m. CDT • Updated: Monday, May 26, 2014 3:15 p.m. CDT
Caption
(BCR photo/Donna Barker)
LaMoille High School sophomore Olivia Heinzeroth (front) puts her signature in the recently published "Same Book, Different Stories: Short Stories from the Class of 2016" book written by the English II sophomores at LaMoille High School. Also shown looking through the new book at Thursday's book-signing and reception are classmates Elizabeth Griffin (back) and Allison Werkau (center). Guiding the book project was English II teacher Barb Zimmerman.

LAMOILLE — The recently published “Same Book, Different Stories” brings readers into the creative minds of 23 sophomore high school students at LaMoille High School.

“Same Book, Different Stories: Short Stories from the Class of 2016” is the culmination of a six-month long writing project assigned by teacher Barb Zimmerman for her English II students. What started out as a short story and autographical poem assignment has turned into a nearly 300-page book.

The finished project is better than she could have imagined, Zimmerman said.

“The kids really stepped up and showed a creative side that they have been dying to show. This really is a proud moment for the kids and their families,” Zimmerman said. “As the rough drafts came through and I noticed how good the stories were becoming, I realized that they all should be published. This then not only became an assignment in creative writing, but also in editing.”

The LaMoille student authors were honored at a reception and book-signing Thursday at the school.

Though this is the first time the book project has been done at LaMoille, she hopes to do this every year from here on out, Zimmerman said. Explaining the process, the class worked through the Instant Publisher website, to which they uploaded the short stories in one large file. The students voted on the title and cover art. In about a month, the anthologies arrived.

Readers of “Same Book, Different Stories” will find a wide range of story lines and revelations as students described themselves in their poems and created their short stories, which ranged from medical mysteries, to fantasy horror, to sports and beyond, Zimmerman said.

Student Jordyn Pinter said she chose to write an irony because she likes the idea of making a joke out of something, saying one thing and meaning it as something else. She also used foreshadowing by starting her story with the female character in the hospital. The story then goes back to chronicle the past week in her life.

Emily Scully said she used a lot of dramatic irony, as well as foreshadowing, in writing her medical mystery, which begins with a husband walking up to his wife’s casket. The reader knows more than the character knows at the time. She didn’t realize her story would be a mystery until she started to write it, Scully said.

A longtime fan of fantasy horror, Cantrell said he based his short story on the “Games of Thrones” show. His story focuses around a wedding, which does not have a happy ending, he said.

To have their writings complied into a book has been an exciting adventure, the sophomores agreed.

“It’s been awesome,” Pinter said. “I went through a stage when I was younger when I wanted to become an author, so this has been cool for me to actually become one.”

Scully agreed, saying it’s a milestone that has been reached, while still in high school, and it will always be remembered.

Hopefully this new book is just one of several which will bear his name in the future, Cantrell said. His goal is to become an author, again with a focus on fantasy horror.

Thirty-five copies of the “Same Book, Different Stories: Short Stories from the Class of 2016” have been published for the students, families and the school.

Comment on this story at www.bcrnews.com.

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