University of Minnesota
minnesota writing project
center for writing

Minnesota Writing Project.Center for Writing's home page.

Young Writers Conference, 2011–Group C

link to cover

Megan DeJaeger, leader
Isabelle Moua, Murray Junior High
Michael Crosby, Murray Junior High
Alexander Roman, Murray Junior High
Pa Yao Vue, Humboldt High
Johnny Yang, Farnsworth Aerospace Magnet 5-8
Simon Yang, Murray Junior High


By Isabelle Moua
Murray Jr. High

Two eyes that make mine shine,
Goodbyes hate that I whine.
Our heavy coats pull us down
Four Chevy tires carry a girl in a gown
Both wish to flee
My hand extends
Oath to me
A band expands
The gray creature lets out a howl
The May month left me in a towel
A wolf is lost
A forest is mossed
I’m carried by a car, away.

Author’s Statement:
I love writing fantasy stories filled with magic, drama and romance. Poems I write are written from my emotions. I usually write rhyming poems. Drawing pictures with a story is cool. I can show what I imagined.


By Michael Crosby
Murray Junior High

There once was a monkey named Rose who liked another monkey named Jack. Jack didn’t know. Rose tried to talk to him, but Jack was talking with another monkey. Rose didn’t know this and it made her sad that he wouldn’t talk to her.

Rose walked to her sustainable shelter, but then she saw another monkey named Robert and he liked her.  When Jack saw them together, he was jealous and wanted to talk to Rose. She ignored him because she was talking to Robert. She had started to think that they had a lot in common.

Suddenly, Jack went right up to Rose and kissed her. She pushed him off and smacked him and left. Jack was sad and said, “I’m all alone.” He would have liked to have killed Robert so that he could have had Rose all to himself. Instead, Jack bought a rose for Rose to apologize and say that he’d leave her alone and wouldn’t bother her anymore. When she came back, Jack kissed her cheek and left.

Rose didn’t really want Jack to leave because she knew she still really liked him. Robert was just a friendship.  She looked everywhere for him but just couldn’t find him. Not being successful, she went to her sustainable shelter. When she got there, Jack was waiting. He just could not leave her – not ever. Rose was surprised and happy to hear him say that he was waiting for her. She told Jack that she loved him and that she had picked him over Robert.

Jack was so happy to hear that from Rose. They both knew they loved each other. Jack loved Rose very much and he asked her to marry him. When he asked her, she said “yes.”

Ducks With the Weird “Do”
By Alexander Roman
Murray Junior High

(Inspired by ducks in the Bell Museum dioramas)

Long, long ago, ducks and birds similar to eagles were enemies. Ducks were always snobby and stuck up. They boasted about their hair; they invented combs and brushes so their hair was always clean and slick.
The eagles were jealous and angry with the ducks so they tricked them. They made fake worms and set them all over the place. The ducks, at feeding time, saw the worms and had a feast. Little did they realize that when they bit into the worms, paint made from berry juice squirted on them. The paint was permanent and the ducks were embarrassed so they went off with other ducks of the same color.

The ducks formed many groups but 2 groups broke away from the rest and stole all the brushes and combs. The others formed a union and at feeding time, broke into the nests of the thieves and damaged all the brushes and combs. The eagles and many other birds found this amusing.

When it came time for migrating season, all birds flew down  south. Before the ducks left, they washed their feathers and designed their hairstyles without combs and brushes.

Down south, the birds settled in nests and snuggled up for a nap from flying.. When they awoke later, they found a sticky substance (later called glue) in their feathers . Another prank by the eagles!

Many ducks ended up with “bed-head” hairstyles. Their heads now looked crazy. Some had Mohawks; some had slick hair; others had spikes. This was the duck’s punishment for bragging all day about their hairstyles. They now had learned a lesson in humility.

Author’s Statement:
I like to write about wild things I see. Writing is a fun way for me to remind myself of what I’ve seen.

The Nest of the Little Squirrel
By Pa Yao Vue
Humboldt High School

During the fall I always go outside and pick leaves to put in my collection. I always see a squirrel running from one spot to another. One year, I decided to  follow the little squirrel. I followed him for about 4 minutes and then stopped  because I couldn’t see the squirrel anymore.

On another day I followed the little squirrel again and this time I kept a close eye on him. He went up the tree  and all the way to the top. When the squirrel got to the top, he went to a big nest. I was surprised because I didn’t know that squirrels lived in nests. The nest was big, bigger than a bird’s nest.  The nest looked like it was about  to fall but year after year, it never does.

Every fall I always go to that same tree to see if the nest is still there. It’s always there when I get to the tree. I love to sit down and stare at the nest for no reason.

One day the tree got cut down and I came to see the nest one more time. I miss that tree so much but it will never come back. As the years go by, I don’t care much about the tree anymore, but every time I see a squirrel it still reminds me of this story.

Author’s Statement:
I like writing about what’s happening in my life and also what’s going on around me. When I’m writing a story, I usually think about what’s going on and then I write down ideas. Writing stories is fun. Writing stories is awesome.

BearBoy and the Timber Wolves
By Johnny Yang
Farnsworth Aerospace Magnet 5-8

Once there was a bear named Bearboy. He had a heartbreaking childhood. When he was a cub his mom and dad went to a river. His dad fell in the waters and his mom was killed by a pack of timberwolves.

Orphaned, he lived on his own finding berries, fish and other stuff to eat. One day he met an old owl on a mountaintop.  The owl fed him with food and gave him a home. Bear, however, never forgave or forgot the timberwolves.

When the owl left to live on the plains, the wolves came back hunting the animals on the mountain.  One day a rabbit was left behind by his escaping family. Bear Boy came and rescued him. The timberwolves attacked immediately, but Bear Boy was strong. He attacked one of the wolves and two others left. He then attacked the last wolf who swung at Bear Boy and missed. Bear Boy came in for the attack and killed him.

Author’s Statement:
I, as a writer, am not the best in the world but I can write lots of interesting stuff.


By Simon Yang
Murray Junior High

It is everywhere.
It may show happiness –
With its brightness.
Or it can show anger or sadness –
With the darkness it brings.

It’s how things work
With animals, it is a circle.
You may be the hunter –
Or be the hunted.
Yet it keeps giving birth –
To all and to none.

It shows power –
Changing the seasons –
Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer.
It controls the weather
It could bring wonderful days,
Or disasters to all or many.

It is our mother –
Taking care of us,
Or punishing us.
It may show mercy,
Or no mercy at all.
It is –