More Than A Class Project

Whidbey Island is known as a writing community. There are so many writers on the island that bookstores can be excused for not carrying every book from every author. The writing community includes international best sellers, but it also celebrates new writers, old writers, poets, screenwriters, editors, publishers, illustrators – and people who have succeeded at getting published before they’ve made it to high school. Here’s one example with some impressive connections that reach through the region, its school districts, and up the academic ladder to NOAA.


John Del Prete’s 4th Grade Class at Crescent Harbor Elementary School recently published “Invisible Pollution”, a book and presentation about ocean acidification and how it is affecting life in and around the Salish Sea. That’s a nice way to start a writing, advocacy, science career, or a life that dives into any combination of those skills. How much will they create by the time they graduate?

Here’s a link to a recent post and podcast (conducted remotely, of course) that is part of the podcast series: (aka WOWI).

Maybe it is the rain, but the Pacific Northwest attracts writers, artists, creatives, and innovators who can keep themselves busy and productive indoors. The rain may also be why coffee (or tea, for some) is so essential. The students probably didn’t sip espresso as they created a study that is gaining an audience. But then, maybe they are more energetic than most writers.

This is only one example. The island includes writers’ retreats, classes, talks, and opportunities to present work that is either polished or in progress. Ask around and find writers groups where members support each other with either critiques, or maybe just emotional support. The blank page can make people balk. Knowing others are in the same situation eases the tension, or at least provides means there’s someone else to rant with.

It would be an interesting race to see whether a reader can read faster than the writers can write. We might need a bigger bookshelf. Of course, there are libraries for that, but that’s another story.


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