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Massena High School writers share their work

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MASSENA - Members of a club that meets every week at Massena High School had an opportunity to showcase their talents Wednesday evening at the Massena Public Library.

The Massena Writers’ Club, led by teacher Elaine Whitcomb, is open to students in all grades. Together, they share their love of all things writing, whether it’s penning something from their own mind or writing for 10 minutes using prompts from other club members.

Ms. Whitcomb said the number of participants ranges each year. They’re not required to attend weekly, and they’ve had as many as 15 to 20 students. Some students are involved in multiple extracurricular activities.

“Whenever they can,” she said. “It depends on what’s going on.

They stood at a podium Wenesday night at the library and shared some of what they loved as part of a session called, “Our Gift of Words.”

“They can recite original writing or a monologue they chose from others,” Ms. Whitcomb said. “We are here as passionate writers and speakers who are willing to voice ourselves in front of a crowd.”

“We’ll read what we wrote and hopefully get people to join,” junior Darienne Judware said.

Other students who participated in the reading were senior Jaclyn Ryan, junior Stormie Simmons and sophomores Samanntha Villnave, Courtney Croasdaile and Letitia Hatch.

“I like writing. I do a lot of poetry and sometimes a short story,” Ms. Judware said. “It takes away a lot of stress. It’s important not to forget how you feel. You can write it down and try to change.”

“It’s an emotional outlet,” Ms. Ryan said, noting that she also favors poetry. “When I first got here, I joined pretty much everybody. This one I stuck with.”

Those who attend the weekly sessions say it’s the equivalent of any group activity.

“We’re like another family. We talk, we collaborate, we know each other’s problems and we write,” Ms. Judware said.

She said that she’ll be returning to the Massena Writers’ Club again next year as a senior. Ms. Ryan, meanwhile, will be headed off to college in Potsdam to study wildlife biology.

After every student, along with Ms. Whitcomb had read their work, the club advisor gave the students high grades.

“This is a tribute to those who dare us to use their pens as an artist’s brush,” she said.

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