Hamline Young Writers Workshop

The Red Shoes

As I sat in my room watching the heavy snow fall I thought about the shoes. The red shoes that were sitting on the top shelf at the shop down the street just waiting for me, waiting to be worn. If I had bought them I think I would have been ready for anything. I would have been dressed from head to toe with my crown and red shoes dancing the night away. With the fluff of my skirt, I would rise as the curtains opened. I would spin, twirl, leap, and hop across the stage. Each leap was filled with passion and each turn was perfected after hours of practice. With the sound of the shoes swiftly touching the floor, I would dance my heart out. At my final bow applauses and chants would be heard. I would be given a bouquet of red flowers, the same shade as my shoes. As I sat back down into reality, I realized I didn’t buy the red shoes on the shelf, but maybe someday.

This is a short fictional story about a little girl dreaming of shoes. This was inspired by an art work of Maurice Sendak. When I first saw it I immediately thought, “This is the most adorable drawing ever.” I wrote this on day 3 at the Hamline Young Writers Workshop (HYWW). My class instructor, Deborah Keenan, wanted us to make a collage with pictures she provided. Mine was very plain and included Sendak’s drawing of a little girl. I had cut up Sendak’s drawing to small pieces. I placed the first cut out on another picture of a building during the winter as snow fell, it was actually a snow globe. The other students had complex collages with varies pictures. I thought about changing my collage many times but I stuck with the little girl and her shoes.

The HYWW was an amazing experience. I was able to meet writers from all over Minnesota and learn more about writing. The four days was filled with a core class, a secondary class, an author panel, being on the Hamline campus, and a reading to end the workshop. We also visited Open Book in Minneapolis and learned about publication. We even make a book of our own. This was finally my chance at learning about how I could publish a piece of my writing.

I met so many amazing writers and supporters that I will always remember. Creative writing has been something I just did when I was sad or mad, I didn’t want to be an author until a couple of years ago, although that goal is still far away. Because of this Workshop, Hamline University is definitely on my college list and I will continue to write and publish a piece of my writing one day. I encourage high school students who are interested in writing in MN to participate in this workshop.

“There’s the story, then there’s the real story, then there’s the story of how the story came to be told. Then there’s what you leave out of the story. Which is part of the story too.” – Margret Atwood

– I.S.


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