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Every summer I enjoy putting together a project; normally it’s writing a novel or a few poems. This year I wanted to do something that I had never tried to do before, I wanted to collaborate with others and put forth something new. Hence, the idea of an anthology was born. I am overwhelmed by the amount of support this anthology has received. Young adults and teenagers from around the world submitted their prose, poetry, art and photography. The Writing Junkie staff whittled through submissions until we found, what we believe to be, a great representation of the creativity of young people around the globe. Although this anthology is called The Writing Junkie , it displays the artistic talents of young people as well. Words are art but some artists can create things that words cannot say. Nobody says this better than Georgie O’Keffe who stated that, “I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way... things I had no words for.” The art you’ll find in here spoke to at least one of the editors. Every poem, story, photo and piece of art made us feel something; we hope that you will feel the same things Launching the Writing Junkie is a testament to the hard work of the staff, writers and artists; it also proves that although we are young, we are constantly honing and developing our art; we prove that age has no bearing on talent and drive. Thank you for supporting The Writing Junkie .

~Sincerely, Ama Adwetewa-Badu~ Editor-In-Chief

Editor-In-Chief Ama Adwetewa-Badu


Poetry Editor Elizabeth Dabanka

Prose Editor Jacob Rivera


Author/Artist Advertising

Apocalypse Beauty can be Colored A Book is a Girl’s Best Friend Dreamers African Princess Golden Hair Siren’s Call Forest Meadow Like Hearts on Us Mountain Living Bench Outside Mr. Dragon and the Particle Accelerator The Annexed Place Being Quiet with Shinazy 12 Bars of Blues Doppler Wake Up My Lady We’ll Forever Stay Fine Days

Brianna Thorpe Geoffrey van der Ven Erin Nixon Kelly Pawliuk-Coderre Liz Dabanka Ama Adwetewa-Badu Pussey Shendi Shinazy Shinazy Geoffrey van der Ven Ama Adwetewa-Badu Shinazy Shinazy Brianna Thorpe Ama Adwetewa-Badu Shinazy Shinazy Geoffrey van der Ven Brianna Thorpe Khushi Bajaj Pussey Shendi Kelly Pawliuk-Coderre

All the pieces in this anthology are solely owned by their creators. The copyright Is theirs.

Abena Ab

Special Thanks to Salimata Kamara (Photography/Art)

Cover Image “Daydreamer” By Erin Nixon Staff favorite Poem “Beauty can be colored” by Geoffrey van der Ven Art//Photo “Daydreamer” By Erin Nixon

What to do in the Event of my Apocalypse

Don't be sad when the galaxy explodes, Just lay me on a bed of anti-matter, And shoot me into a supernova. Once you've said your goodbyes Just forget about me. There's another sun still shining, after all. There's another thousand moons, Another million stars. Get on your spaceship and find a new Earth. Fuel your engines with laughter, And overload the capacitors with smiles. I don't need to go; I've seen enough of the universe to know That you'll love it just fine without me.

Brianna Thorpe

Beauty can be Colored

White man on Stage, A black choir, Longing for peace, A fist in the air, Anthem of sorrow, Songs finished in a hug; Have you ever seen beauty in black and white, Voices unite in pain, Emotion does not discriminate A dance learned by both sides, Apartheid cannot not beat the arts, Will be shown over and over again, How all hearts pump blood, Look at beauty in Black and white Then try to tell me that unity is not beautiful.

Geoffrey van der Ven

A Book is a Girl’s Best Friend Photographer: Erin Nixon


How can we tell, what is a fairytale and what is for real? In this day and age, do we even want to know? If you live in your mind They call you crazy They call you a dreamer They say that’s a bad thing. But what they don’t know is that your world is better. Believing is the way out, and the way in. Dreaming is breathing. And we all need air.

Kelly Pawliuk-Coderre

African Princess

Where am I from? As a person of my decent I rarely get asked this. Because can't you see? It's quite obvious where I'm from. I'm from the run down part of town. From the meanings of YOLO and ratchet. I am from the, "Yo, girl what's going on in your hood?" kind of dialect. My dark complexion and never ending hairstyles say it all for me. Because my appearance is all you need to see. To assume that I party to Niki Manaj all night while nursing a beer with my girls. Maybe I'm from the family that all had kids at the age of 16. Maybe I'll be the next in the line.

To say, "Screw education," and pack my behind all the way to Burger King. Where I will be working to support myself and my child. But you could never realize No, you could never know, that I am from Africa. Not the poor AIDs filled Africa, but from a village full of kind faces, of food always cooking at any time of day tempting you to take another bite of that spicy stew. My father once told me that we came from royalty. That my great great grand father was king of our tribe. That he had over a hundred children and so many wives. I never believed him. But I could be from an ancient dynasty of kings. In their time, they were at the top. Because no one put labels on them that demeaned their character. They wore gold around their necks and feet. Their kinte was the very best of the best. Their presence would be something to be in awe of.

So let me answer even though you never asked. I am from Africa. Ghana to be specific. I'm not infected with AIDs, neither is anyone on my street. I am the daughter of two parents and the sibling of two younger ones. I go to a great school and plan on Staying. I want to do something with my life. I don't know what that is yet but when I do, I'll let you know. For now, I want to write. To pour my heart onto a piece of paper. To share my thoughts. I don't know if I'm allowed to say this but: I am an African Princess.

Lizy Dabanka

Golden Hair Photographer: Ama Adwetewa-Badu

The siren's call I’ve always wondered who’s she The sad girl who used to sit under a tree Trying to escape from the madding crowd With what they did to her, are they proud? Under the shade alone she sat After the plastics called her fat She’d walk alone and eat alone And I’d watch her everyday on my way home Her sad eyes made me wonder more What was this girl weeping for And then I heard about the insults and the stares But I thought she was smart enough not to care I watched from a distance ,I didn’t interfere I saw her shed a tear after tear I wish I had done something to her from that fate But when I figured it out, it was too late They bullied her and made fun But she kept it a secret and told no one And those who saw her didn’t talk And after she was gone they never spoke Problems at home they all said But look to what their lies had led Some spread rumors and some stayed silent But others had ways that were more violent So one day the girl decided to let go And surrender to death’s claw Her lifeless body started to fall Long before I heard the sirens call

Pussey Shendi

“Forest Meadow” Photographer: Shinazy Shinazy

Like hearts on us.

There is nothing, There's nothing like a lover's birthday, To make you reel with the feeling of nostalgia. You used to make home with me, Words exchanged over servers, felt like they were whispered into my ear. Comfort spraying from your hands hugged me the way only a lover could. There's nothing like a text message after months of silence, That makes you smile like a rainbow eloping from your tongue, We used to be so loud. We used to cause earthquakes over networks, Spill ink, like oil, Write like professionals. Our love was hinted in psalms, Only Gods saw the bond we shared, Only Goddesses felt the passion in the air, Do you still feel it?

Cause when you replied to my message, I saw a flash of light in front of my eyes, Tell me it was more than just a notification on my phone, Tell me it was Vulcan making love to Venus; A fiery eruption surrounded by love, Spread out over our heartsIf we belong together... We will.

Geoffrey van der Ven

“Mountain Living” Photographer: Ama Adwetewa-Badu

Bench Outside Photographer: Shinazy Shinazy

Mr. Dragon and the Particle Accelerator

Mr. Dragon reigns supreme in Silence. He donates crocodile smiles in exchange for Empty minds. He says it's best to live among ashes Instead of risking your neck chasing insatiable Mornings. He gives a speech about humility. And we trade in our eyes for buttons. It all makes sense if you don't judge And instead gush as college-ruled wings surf the applause. A disturbance in the frequency. Nay, worse: Words. A little voice threads through the cheers and asks Mr. Dragon to prove his prowess In a duel.

"Step forward!" cries the beast, Masking his delight. And forward steps a mouse. A mouse. Lab coat for a cape, Paws twirling goggles fogged, And whiskers twitching 'neath a Benevolent stare. Mr. Dragon laughs and we vomit echoes. But the mouse curls his tail And waits. Four angels bring forth his weapon. And suddenly our buttons see That this is very real indeed. Silence. Teeth go clack. And jaws go snap. And tail goes crack. As Mr. Dragon spouts paper flames. He thrashes, He crashes, His claws unearth forgotten Graveyards. He roars and soars As his scales write blood-soaked poetry for the stars.

The mouse waits. And waits. And waits. Until the beast can thrash no more. The angels lift him in their arms And we question our urge to flee. They toss him up He goes down And the weapon goes to work. He tumbles into twisting tubes, Then Thwack! The hatch closes. The mouse dons his goggles, Adjusts his coat, And lets his soft paws play with a series of Flips And Switches. The last we hear of Mr. Dragon Is a muffled scream. Blackest night is blown away By a single string of lightening. Dawn crawls over our heads in the form of Scientific revolution.

The mouse steps down and waves goodbye Before the angels return his weapon to the clouds. Then, With a wink that only I can see, Bounds back to the laboratory, Leaving our buttons to access the fact That dragons can be slain with particle accelerators.

Brianna Thorpe

The Annexed Place

I decided to hang myself

From the rafters in my bedroom So that I could be elevated And see what was beyond This annexed place And I, in my naivety, Thought that this height, This floating, Would bring me closer To a truth To your perfect, impeccable truth That exists beyond the veil of life Beyond this guise of living For what brought us here How can I know, Lest, perhaps, The keys to the upper attic are hidden In the closing of my eyes In the fluttering of lashes In the last exhaling of my lungs

Ama Adwetewa-Badu

Being quiet with Shinazy

It’s quiet. The first winter storm just passed but the sky holds onto its grey while the redwood needles pretend that the raindrops continue to fall. I’m in Butano, a coastal mountain hamlet, only minutes away from San Francisco. There’s no sense of civilization here. No motor sounds, no whirr of industry or consumption. The rain has stopped long enough for the worms and bugs to wiggle onto the beds of decomposing brown and green. On the edge of my vision a flutter of wings – birds seeing their evening meal. They scurry to swallow before their neighbor. It looks like dancing; some wild choreographed stomping of tiny Irish River Dancers. In this dense forest a crow or black bird or raven sounds the coming of Goliath. On cue the tiny dancers stop, heads still until some unspoken note signals them to zoom away. How is it that there are no head-on collisions? The damp ground is now empty. I hear it coming, breaking the quiet – the caw loudens. Like the landing of a jet fighter the crow is on the ground, a centennial guarding the nude dirt. But he must hear something my human ears do not because he suddenly starts to drill holes. Is he finding the retreating bugs and worms? The false tree rain stops and now the branches are light enough for the breeze to move them, a new sound to pause the silence. I can actually hear the tones the difference leaves make as they rustle against each other. The sun must be setting. The sky is still the same pale grey, but the distant trees are black. And the nothingness approaches. I can no longer distinguish one redwood from another. I can only see the autumn colors of the Manzanita that grows near the porch. Night is coming. Even the crow is gone. I’m here to escape the never-ending din of the city. I felt my ears and mind were always being assaulted. I needed to reconnect with nature. In this quiet I hear … something: my thoughts, time, imaginary sounds. I only know life with noise, so in this stillness I hear what may not be there. Evening is settling. The next storm is coming – new sounds for me to hear while I escape into the quiet.

Shinazy Shinazy Shinazy Shinazy

12 Bars of Blues

Have you ever heard blues from the pit of its mother's soul, Her muscles wailed indigo notes, A steady ocean erupting from her throat Washing over bitten lips, and torn skin. Life just seems so thin when the only thing keeping you together is a color, Beautiful in the sky, and blessing in the water But so big it was chosen to fill the heaviest of emotions. Have you ever heard blues sweat from the pores of its father, Oozing out of lash-cracks, they told me blood was supposed to be red, Read the notes like you've never seen before from his back, This record didn't need a phonograph to be played, The needle was his heart, his mouth the resonator Just hear him play as whips carve new songs into his bones. Will we ever know blues like this again. The first day someone says something to you, And you are old enough to understand the under tone of those words, Will you go back to Billie Holiday and ask her to show you strength, Will you move to New Orleans and find comfort with the Rising Sun, Or tell Ray that you know why he was Feeling Sad that day,

Will you pick up a paint brush and just play it away, Telling yourself that the people who comment aimlessly, Have never felt a soul pass right through them, And left a bad taste in their mouth. Just promise me one thing, Tell me that Texas Alexander will never be forgotten, For ever remember those voices of worn souls in big fields, Like sand paper in your gut, Remember that it does not have to sound beautiful, Just real. And maybe one day, Your name will be written across 12 bars.

Geoffrey van der Ven


Adolescent hips Sashay beneath skirts too tight, And drooping necklines hint at Breasts too small. She was porcelain. Glass eyes that never spoke. Blooming lips painted into a seductive smile By a beast who thought he could Create. Anorexic body drained of blood, Chlorinated water burst her lungs. She lost herself in photographs, And pleas under the guise of poetry. The angel was a little man With little to his name. He was a shouting man, With burning eyes and hands Too fine. And pit-bulls roared in his wake. Gospels of slashing jaws Roaring hallelujahs against a mosaic

Of liquid gold and goofy smiles. She peered at them through Garbage heaps and the covers of Fraying novels. Wondered if angels were beasts, Or if beasts were simply not men. And they watched her. They gave themselves names In order to show her that these Were no clip on wings. And their tongues Did not flicker. Slowly she crept from her home Of molded banana peels And granted permission to the Brown feathers To stitch her back together. The pit-bulls bathed her in drool, And in return she held them in her, Twig arms. She laid in a bed of numbers As the angel burrowed her into his Wings. And she laughed. A happy laugh.

Brianna Thorpe

Wake Up My Lady

Wake up my lady, To the rays of the sun, To give the honor of your presence, To everyone. To make the butterflies blush, And the honey bees giggle, To make the flowers blossom brighter, And grass blades tickle‌ For to have the eyes mesmerised, With a glorius sight like you, All the creatures await your presence, And celestial beings too. So gently open your eyes, And let the world look at you, For all you may know, my lady, The world may be pretty too

Khushi Bajaj

We'll Forever Stay

Here you are and here I am Two lost souls in Buckingham The city where our love first blossomed, The city where we walked hand in hand Where I was devastated and you helped me stand My first glimpse of true love was about to start As I felt warmth lingering in the walls of my heart In both our minds we ruled the world Entangled together by an unseen chord I thought nothing could stand in our way But a shocking fate ,there lay What awaited us was a monstrous beast Hopes and dreams were his feast When I shed the first tear over you It fell on earth like a drop of dew And on that spot grew a flower I was enchanted by such power The power of true love , as mother would say Love so strong that nothing could sweep away I held a piece of paper smudged by tears Holding tightly to a dead man’s fears

Oblivion scared you, and that’s what you said: The moment I’m out of your head Is the moment I’m truly dead But I thought about you night and day And in my mind our memories play I wanted to join you wherever you were Death separated us, life is so unfair Those were my thoughts when the car came rushing by And the last thing I heard was a warning cry When the sirens filled the air,it was too late No one could save me from my fate I leaped from the body I possessed once Everything was fading, before I fell into a trance I was completely trapped by fear before I felt your touch You pulled me closer and whispered in my ear ‘we’ll stay forever’ it was that much That’s how our tale started from an end When both our fates strated to blend You held my hand tightly in yours

And we flew together through closed doors Nothing can stop us now And that was our new vow Our tale was engraved in the stones of the old city Our love was presented for everyone to see We thought that the world not knowing about us is such a pity So here we are telling thee We never left the city where our love grew We stayed forever delivering the love potion we brew If you don’t believe our little tale, it’s up to you

Epilogue: When our bodies were left to decay and turned to dust Two trees at that place grew Both were getting higher so fast One for me and one for you

Pussey Shendi

Fine Days

Down on the beach, in the backyard. It doesn’t matter wherever we are. We’ll have a good time No matter the day. Moments fade, But memories stay. I love you now, and that feeling won’t go away.

Kelly Pawliuk-Coderre

Artist & Author Biography

Brianna Nicole Thorpe Brianna Nicole Thorpe was born in the backwoods of Missouri, but quickly moved out West to the great (and unbearably hot) state of Arizona. Her childhood was comprised of hiking and target shooting, all to the soundtrack of the one and only Bob Marley. She owes her talent for storytelling to her paternal grandfather, who never ceased to fascinate her with wild yarns about highly impossible happenings. But it was at 17 when, with the help of a remarkably patient science teacher, that she discovered that her true passion was physics. From there she embarked on an action packed, heart pounding, edge-of-your-seat quest to learn everything there was to learn about physics (and wrote a couple books along the way). Now she’s a 19 year old physics major with a dark fantasy debut novel right around the corner.

Kelly Pawliuk-Coderre Kelly Pawliuk-Coderre is 15 years old and lives in Montreal, Canada. She enjoys playing sports like curling and volleyball and spends her free time reading, sailing, and with friends. She loves to make people laugh and her ambition is to become a screenwriter for Saturday Night Live. Check out her blog:

Elizabeth Dabanka A long time ago in a far away land there was a child born in a foreign country. She lived there for a while and then was brought to the U.S where she currently resides in the smallest state (Rhode Island if you couldn't guess). She is a erratic teenage writer and is often going through periods of melting and cooling because her moods are always fluctuating. She finds solace writing in the second person because it helps to distance her from the characters and dictate what is happening more directly. She can often be caught pondering things concerning race, religion, and all the most serious things that one can think of. She recently decided that the pen name Cassandra Elizabeth is what suits her the most and has actually been thinking about changing her actual name of such...of course that it the land of dreams, where she is a resident much too often.

Pussey Shendi Pussey Shendi is an 18 year old bibliophile. Significantly, she allows herself to be unironically enthusiastic about stuff. As a yet-to-be Senior, she's a master procrastinator, writing poems and fantasizing about Hogwarts instead of studying for her finals, something which she shamelessly enjoys. She is also a nerdfighter, fighting daily to decrease world suck, in her fantasies. Pussey Shendi currently lives with her wonderful family in Cairo, Egypt.

Geoffrey van der Ven Hi, I am Geoffrey van der Ven. A twenty year old, half Dutch, half Nigerian, industrial design student from Holland. Currently working on my second book, I started writing about six years ago, during my time in Nigeria. Strarting with small lines and stanza long poems, until the world of spoken word opened its arms and stole my pen. Ever since then, under the inspiration of life art and experience, I have been poring out poem after poem Twitter @Allget

Submission forms for the 2014 anthology will be available in December. There are open spots in the staff: Assistant Editor, Poetry Editor, Prose Editor, Photography Editor, Art Editor, Advertising, Design Editor, as well as assistant spots and general staff positions. Send inquires to Or go to For the next issue we are hoping to include articles and professional advice. Thank you. Not all authors and artists submitted a biography

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Darien Oceina is the youngest son of the Great Dragon Lord of the Water. For years he's loved and cherished Tai Dawson from afar. Tai is a simple, ordinary girl who doesn't even know Darien exists. On his eighteenth birthday, he chooses her as his wife. But there’s one problem: She thinks his choice means she's going to be offered as a sacrifice to the Dragon Lord, but instead, she’s forced to move to his home, far away, to give up her life and be his bride. When she first sees Darien after the ceremony, she doesn’t expect to feel anything but hatred toward him. The two are struggling with the complications of a new marriage when their nation is attacked by a rival dragon species. Together they learn to love one another while they struggle to stay one step ahead in a game where the prize is their survival. Author J.F. Jenkins

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The Writing Junkie Anthology: Issue 1. Summer MMXIII  

This is the first issue of The Writing Junkie anthology. It contains poetry, prose and photography from teens and young adults from all over...