Sleepovers, gardens, secrets, curses…and the Presidency

“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” ~ Benjamin Franklin
One of my favorite Hutchison memories involves the yearly book created by Lower School (grades 1-5) students.  Every girl wrote and illustrated her own hardbound book each spring.  While our teachers offered proofreading and general guidance, we had complete autonomy in terms of the artistic and written content.  I think I speak for all of our classmates when I say this was one of the best times of the year.  Not only did we have a blast– but it taught us the importance of creativity– and showed us that our ideas, expressions, and contributions outside of the academic realm were worthy and valuable.  Every elementary aged child should have this as a part of their curriculum.

The Big Sleepover (1993)

The Big Sleepover (1993)

“I don’t care who you are.  When you sit down to write the first page of your screenplay, in your head, you’re also writing your Oscar acceptance speech.” ~ Nora Ephron

Composed in Ms. Isom’s first grade class, this is my debut novel.  To the best of my recollection I had several sleepovers of epic proportions that year, so I’m sure that served as my source of inspiration.  Write about what you know, eh?  In my book I had a slumber party where I ate pizza and ice cream and then got into our non-existent outdoor hot tub with Huxley, Parker, Lisa, and Dorothy. 

The English Garden (1994)

The English Garden (1994)

“When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people, not characters.  A character is a caricatures.”  ~ Ernest Hemingway

If you think what I did in Ms. Ketner’s class merely involves perennials, you are sorely mistaken.  There’s a sinister twist.  Are you intrigued yet?

The Secret Of House 205 (1995)

The Secret Of House 205 (1995)

“Writing is like prostitution.  First you do it for love, then for a few close friends, and then for money.” ~ Moliere

Hail To The Chief (1996)

Hail To The Chief (1996)

“Easy reading is damn hard writing.” ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne

You should already know that the ‘chief’ referred to in this context is yours truly and I thank Ms. Drummel for indulging me.  Apparently most people missed the memo that we’ve already had our first female president– me– and our first minor president as well as I was only ten when I ascended the democratically elected throne of this great nation. 

Nila's Curse (1997)

Nila’s Curse (1997)

“There are three rules for writing a novel.  Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.” ~ W. Somerset Maugham

….because your teenage babysitter whisking your children off to the Middle East is a very real possibility.  The charges don’t seem too unhappy though so I guess America wasn’t working out for them.  Those over-educated, under-stimulated, and privileged youth…so ungrateful!  I wonder if Ms. Koehn noticed my camel was missing a few legs.

With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,



About Cocktails With Hemingway

I'm blunt and opinionated. Virtually everything I say or do is a contradiction but I'm not a hypocrite. I never hesitate to speak my mind and never fail to leave an impression wherever I go. You love me, you hate me, but you'll never forget me.
This entry was posted in Childhood, Hutchison, Words of Wisdom, Writing. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Sleepovers, gardens, secrets, curses…and the Presidency

  1. Sarah Scoggin says:

    This is really cute! I’m sure MeMae helped to “save” all those novels!

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