D211 Post: Fremd Holds 24th Annual Writers Week
William Fremd High School held its 24th annual Writers Week from Feb. 5 -9. The week-long event showcased both student and professional writers, and included a mix of readings and discussion.
“Writers Week creates a sense of community through storytelling as students begin to identify as literary citizens alongside professional writers,” said Fremd English teacher Gina Enk.
During this year’s event, 96 students read a variety of original works which focused on anything from fictional short stories to tales of personal trials and exploration.
Junior Caitlin Peterson presented a story about her cousin who was paralyzed after a snowmobile accident and has worked to become independent again. She said her message was that people should never take advantage of what they have.
“I felt very opinionated on this topic,” Peterson said. “I felt a lot more people needed to know about this, not just my friends.”
Peterson felt Writers Week was the perfect time to tell her story.
“This is the perfect opportunity because so many people come to watch and listen during Writers Week,” she said.
Among the group of professional writers who spoke with the students were Andrew Huff and Eden Robins who host Tuesday Funk, an eclectic Chicago reading series. Robins, who is also a Fremd graduate, said she was honored to be a part of something she saw in its early stages when she was a student. She recalled seeing writer Gwendolyn Brooks speak at the event when she was a student.
“It’s really exciting to be on stage here,” Robins said. “It’s really cool to be up here, and remember what it was like to be out there. I’m both really excited and nervous.”
Huff said he was impressed by Fremd’s annual event.
“I went to Barrington High School, and I wish there was something like this there,” he said. “I think it’s a testament to the investment that Fremd has made in its students that has lasted this long and can draw such incredible talent.”
“The fact that this has been going on for more than 20 years is really heartwarming and incredible to me,” Robins added.
Enk said she would encourage any student considering participation in future Writers Weeks to do so.
“In 24 years, we have never had a student who is sorry that they have chosen to share their writing,” she said. “Our audiences are attentive and rooting for you to do well. Submit your writing!”