Traveling to a new place requires a certain amount of fearlessness. Luckily, WITS Writer Chris Cander thrives on new experiences. So when the Dostyk American International School in Atyrau, Kazakhstan invited her to become a writer-in-residence for a week, and teach creative writing to young expatriates between pre-K and 8th grade, Chris immediately said yes. Chris,… Read more »

Author Janine Joseph; Photo by Jaclyn Heward Janine Joseph, who taught with Writers in the Schools from 2009-2013, will be reading tonight at Houston’s Poison Pen Reading Series at 8:30 p.m. at Poison Girl Cocktail Lounge. She will be reading alongside University of Houston writers, Allegra Hyde and Will Burns. The event is free and… Read more »

Educators! As you know, the Houston Super Bowl is right around the corner. Here’s a unique opportunity for your students to get excited about football and literature. On Friday, January 29th, Inprint Cool Brains! presents Tim Green, author of the New York Times bestseller for middle-schoolers, Football Genius. Tim will be reading from his new book, Left… Read more »

If you’ve ever witnessed a slam poetry performance by our Meta-Four team, a crew of 13-19 year-old WITS students with a desire to be heard, you know that there is a magical quality to the energy they expend on stage. Performance poetry is an opportunity for students to empower themselves, to use their bodies and… Read more »

This Sunday 1/15/17 in over 70 US cities, writers will gather to speak out for equity and justice, as part of a movement called #WritersResist. To represent the Houston community, Houston poets and writers of diverse backgrounds will come together to share messages of peace, democracy, unity, and hope. The diversity of our city, the solidarity… Read more »

When: Saturday, January 21 at 4 PM – 6 PM Who: Danez Smith What: A FREE writing workshop for Houston youth Where: The Pilot on Navigation 5102 Navigation Blvd, Houston, Texas 77011 preceding the Meta-Four Houston Poetry Slam at 7 pm For more information, click here. Brought to you by Writers in the Schools (WITS)

  photo credit: pixabay Oh, snow owls, your beautiful sound from the heavens lets light through the clouds in the sunset. Snow owls, when you rise at the dawn of winter, your wings shimmer from the frosty bits and you fly like a dove. You are as majestic as an eagle, soaring in the salty breeze…. Read more »

My best Christmas was two years ago because somebody my dad knew from work invited us to his apartment to celebrate. When my dad and I got to the apartment, we marveled that it was so pretty. All the decorations were nice because the guy my dad knew from work put a lot of effort into them. Decorations were all over… Read more »

Light the glittering candles Chant the ancient prayers Spin the colorful dreidels Eat the crunchy latkes Sing a holiday song Remember a Jewish miracle Tear open a hundred gifts! By Sam  

Is your teen looking for something to do over winter break? They could be writing original work and submitting to these amazing publishing opportunities. ONE TEEN STORY ONE TEEN STORY is an award-winning quarterly literary magazine that features the work of today’s best teen writers (ages 13 to 19). One Teen Story is looking for stories about… Read more »

2017 Foster-Harris Prizes for Young Writers The University of Oklahoma’s Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication, in recognition of the Professional Writing Program’s 65th anniversary in the college, invites submissions for the 2017 Foster-Harris Prizes for Young Writers. Two $500 awards will be given, one for a short story of up to 1000 words… Read more »

Who: The Poetry Society of America What: The Louise Louis / Emily F. Bourne Student Award When: Entries must be postmarked by December 22, 2016 Why: The winner will receive $250 and recognition by the Poetry Society of America About the Award Endowed under the wills of Louise Louis Whitbread and Ruth M. Bourne, this… Read more »

The outside of the house has bright red bricks and dark green tiles on the roof. Her path to the front door is so pretty. It has all kinds of rocks that are yellow and orange. Her front porch has a long swing where at least three people can fit. Her swing is hard as… Read more »

Soapbox Youth Nonfiction Slam Date: December 3, 2016 Time: 2pm Location: Morris Frank Library | 10103 Fondren Rd, Houston, TX 77035 Join the WITS Youth Advisory Council on Saturday, December 3rd, at 2pm at the Morris Frank Library for the Soapbox Nonfiction Slam. This event is free and open to youth ages 13-19. Bring your… Read more »

Entries for the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are due soon. In years past, these prestigious awards have gone to recipients including Joyce Carol Oates, Truman Capote, Ken Burns, Stephen King, and Sylvia Plath. Check out their website to find the specifics for your city or region.

Call for submissions from teen writers in Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico! Who: Voices, a regional arts and literary journal published annually by students and faculty at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas. What: Imaginative, original works of fiction, creative non-fiction, poetry, art, and drama from high school, undergraduate, and graduate students in Texas, Oklahoma,… Read more »

  I’m thankful for the sunshine and for food. I’m thankful for warm weather, for clouds and for leaves. But! I don’t like getting shots, I don’t like cheese, And I Hate frogs!   by Delila, 1st grade

Introducing Houston’s New Youth Poet Laureate Fareena Arefeen, 17, is Houston’s new Youth Poet Laureate. Fareena, a student at the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), was chosen amongst dozens of talented Houston teens to share her insightful voice and creative spirit with the City of Houston. Houston’s Youth Poet Laureate is… Read more »

When I’m old enough to vote, I’m going to vote with my feet, my head, my heart, my voice, my thoughts, my dreams. I’m going to vote like I mean it.   By Ni’cole, 4th grade