• India R, Evin W, Afnaan D

Ask us! We’ll tell you!


We give general advice on drawings or writing and give feedback for specific pieces of art or writing.

General Advice for Writing

India: When you are writing, write like you are there. In your mind, what do you see? Give details to help the readers “see” your writing. You also have to be careful though, because too many details will get your reader off-track. This can be hard, so let’s think of an example. If you were writing about being in a forest late at night and you are scared, think of the details you could add.

Yes: I can see the faint outline of the towering trees.

No: The grass is green when you look really close, and there is a ladybug on one piece.

Why didn't the second sentence work? It didn't because it took away from the main feel: the forest is dark and scary. The key is making sure your details add to the main point of the story.

Afnaan: When you write, express what you are writing about. Give details and descriptions to make your writing feel alive to your audience. Make them imagine and picture what you are talking about. When you write, make sure your details fit whatever you are writing. But you will have to keep in mind, if you add too many details, it will bore your readers and make them not want to read your piece. Don’t be too wordy, yet don’t be too simple!

Evin: When you write something, like a story, make sure you express feelings with nice words and compare things to others to make your text interesting.

Writings and Drawings

By Gabrielle Lussier:

Every storm that passed her threatened to drown her, but that was the price of being named after her homeland. There was also something about being legendary, remarkable, and highly sought after, but, apparently, that last part only applied to her when there was something that needed to be cleaned or an order that needed to be delivered.

Atlantis scrubbed the table in front of her, clearing crusted cheese and old jam off the face of the ancient wood. The smell of coffee and syrup wafted through the air, and gentle music floated around the small cafe. She stepped on a piece of bread and cursed beneath her breath, shaking her foot in midair. It marked another item upon an already-growing list of things that needed to be cleaned up, and she was late as it was already. A loud bell announced the arrival of yet another customer. They'd been steaming in all morning, and it was getting old quickly.

Atlantis glanced up at her co-worker, the only other server that had shown up that morning. Everyone else had called in sick, which was an unabashed lie. Melissa gestured at the singular woman who'd approached the register table and Atlantis reapplied the smile that was becoming ever more difficult to maintain.

It was regulatory to ask if the customer had a good day, and what their plans for the day were, but this woman, in particular, didn't seem to want to talk. Frankly, Atlantis was relieved. She didn't really want to listen.

"You could've been nicer to her. Do you have any idea who she is?" Melissa hissed, as Atlantis poured tea and ice into a blender.

"She's certainly not a generous tipper." She responded, waiting to turn on the blender until Melissa opened her mouth. By the time the chai was blended correctly, her co-worker had (thankfully) left, and the customer was still loitering near the front desk. She handed the drink to the woman,

“Anything else you'd like today?”

“No thank you.” She spoke shortly, as though she had fathoms more yet to say, but was forcing herself to leave it at that. Atlantis watched her choose a seat in the corner, and stared at her for a moment. She was either incredibly paranoid or unusually brilliant. She'd examined every inch of the restaurant in the time it had taken to blend her drink, and she'd chosen her seat similarly to the way Atlantis did. Invisible to those outside, never facing away from the entrance.

“Atlanis!” She glanced back, where Melissa had apparently begun to talk to her.

“Yes?” She responded.

“There's a spot on this cup.” Atlantis fought the urge to roll her eyes. That specific cup had been through the rounds for nearly two years, and in that time, it had gained its fair share of scratches, nicks, and spots, some, such as the one Melissa had chosen to report, that were darker than others.

“A spot?” Atlantis inquired, biding time as she imagined the mug perfectly spotless.

“A spot.” Melissa continued, “And if there are any spots on the other dishes, or silverware, you'll be required to wash it all again.” Atlantis took a deep breath, and expanded her imagination to the rest of the dishware that sat behind her on the counter. It was really quite a shame that this woman had been given the allowance of training, hiring, and firing employees like herself.

“To which spot are are you referring?” Atlantis pretended to inspect the cup, taking it from Melissa. Fuming, she took it back, madly pointing at the handle.

“Right there.” Atlantis raised her eyebrows, squinting at the maroon mug.

“I don't see anything.”

“It's right-” Atlantis savored the look of confusion as her superior searched for the elusive stain. Maintaining her feigned confusion, she looked from Melissa to the cup, to Melissa, and back to the cup.

“If I see one more stain, Atlanis, you'll be taking Emile's shift for tonight.”

Atlantis nodded, then waited until Melissa walked away to mutter, “upon your ever-wise discretion, of course.”

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India: I think it is excellent! Very well written, I love the humor included! I do not have any advice for this story except for keep writing!

Afnaan: I too think it is very well written! It is very elaborate and thorough! I think it is very detailed. My advice for this work is: keep on the good work!

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Sun Flower Glows

By Afnaan Damrah

Tree withering

Wind blows

Tree shriveling

Sun flower glows

Stormy skies

Only the flower knows

Tree dies

Sun flower glows

Clouds be gray

Life will come

Tree will sway

Life will come

Yet the sun flower glows!

Evin: I like it a lot! Maybe on the last sentence you could shorten it a bit, but other than that, great work!

-Austin McGinnis

Afnaan: I think it is very nice! Love it! But some advice: I wouldn’t use just one color to fill in the jellyfish. Add different shades of yellow to give the picture texture and feeling. Try to picture this jellyfish in your mind at an angle. See where the shadows are and darken the jellyfish were the shadows should be, with darker yellow. And I would make the bubbles look as if they were reflecting off of something.

India: Adorable! I think it’s really cute; I love the bubbles! One thing, instead of a normal pencil use the actual color for the outline.

Evin: That drawing is really cool! I believe it is a jellyfish from SpongeBob? If that's what it is, I believe it should be purple. But if not, great work!!

-Austin McGinnis

Afnaan: I really love it! It looks really realistic! One thing I may suggest: I do believe more shade is necessary, and I would try to make the “Air Cylinders” more straight.

Evin: This is really great. I think maybe if you just added some shading it would be even greater!