Young Chicago Authors – the Area 17 ceremony

May 25, 2011, the culminating ceremony for the Area 17 Chicago Young Authors celebration was held at the Dr. Alexander Bouchet Math & Science Academy, and I was there as a guest of the coordinator, Tina Franklin-Bertrand. 

Author B. A. Binns and Area 17 Youth Authors Coordinator Mrs. Franklin-Bertrand

Many of the winners were stories I judged last Friday.  

Primary, Intermediate and Middle school students arrived early to read each others books and get their well-earned rewards. It was my pleasure to see all the Area 17 students, Honorable Mentions, Excellent and Outstanding, in the audience and marching across the stage.
Students, teachers and supporters of the young authors.

For the Primary grades,
Trip To The Zoo by C. Patterson took home the Excellent prizeThe Return of Super Marcus by M. Frazier the Outstanding prize.
For the Intermediate grades,
A to Z Math Terms by C. Tareef took ExcellentI Wish Horses Were Blue by A. Burks the Outstanding prize.
For Middle School,
Why Me? by K. Cruse took ExcellentTimes Get Hard by L. Anderson won the Outstanding prize.
Times Get Hard, the Middle School Outstanding book, is a group of poems that I had the pleasure to judge.  Having read it already, I was not surprised when it won the top Middle School honor.  In spite of the title, many of the poems contained in the slim volume showed hope.

 After reading this and a number of the other Honorable Mentions, Excellent and  Outstanding stories, I can honestly call all the writers in the room winners, along with their parents, teachers and supporters. Everyone deserved their medals.  As I was able to tell all the students in the room, welcome to the world of writing. I consider all of them my hard-working companions in this endeavor we call writing.

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