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Emily Smith ~ May 2013

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Featured Author~ Emily Smith



               In her own words:


     Hi! I'm Emily, a sixth grader at Holy Cross School. I have been reading      and writing since I can remember and my favorite books include Harry      Potter, Nancy Drew, and the Hardy Boys. I love mysteries and fantasy,      and recently placed second in the 6-8th grade division in the IRA Writing      contest. Other than writing, I enjoy playing soccer, volleyball, and      basketball. I am currently working on two novels and am in the planning      process of writing a play with a friend of mine.


*Out of more than 120 entries from seven different school corporations, Emily took second place in the middle school division of this year's writing contest. Emily's story, "Seeing Double," impressed our judges with its use of strong images to develop setting as an integral component of the story.

Click here to read "Seeing Double."




“Free Write”

By Emily Smith

What should I write- there are no limits,

I just have to write for several minutes.

Should it be funny, or crazy, or sad?

I can’t decide and it is driving me mad!

Time’s almost up and I don’t have a topic,

I wish I could freeze time- just stop it!

What person should it be in; 1st, 2nd, or 3rd?

I don’t have a plot- I don’t have a word!

What did you say? Wait, hold the phone!

                                                                      I think my real topic has shone.

                                                                           I wrote about writing…..Imagine that.


An excerpt from “The 12 Nobodies of New York” by Emily Smith

Chapter One

            “So let me get this straight- some random stranger with absolutely no experience is just going to whisk us away to an old shack?” Jenna Maxwell asked, slowly packing an old tattered suitcase.

            “It’s not a shack, it’s an empty apartment building that some nice state people let us have,” Lacey Adams corrected. Lacey was sick and loved to be right every moment possible.

            “If the state was really nice, we wouldn’t be kicked out of this orphanage because there wasn’t enough money to keep half of the girls here.” Jenna replied.

            Jessie Taylor, the oldest, picked Lacey up, turned her away from Jenna, and said, “Look-this orphanage is poor, overcrowded, and bitter. Things can’t get worse. We can at least try this out, okay?” In less than an hour, 12 orphans would be moving a city away to a new “girl’s home”.

            “But on the bright side, we’re going to New York City!” Claire Simon grinned. “Beth, you can really be a star now!” Beth Greene smiled and began whistling as the girls finished packing.


            “Wow. Just, wow.” Hannah Butler said as the girls pulled up in the driveway of their new home. It could have been a small mansion-until the girls realized it was supposed to have been an apartment complex. The girls were being driven in 2 minivans, each driven by an under-paid, over-perky social security worker. “Won’t this be fun, new, experience girls?” the lady driving Jessie, Jenna, Lacey, Kay Thomas, Cassidy Peters, and Stacey Jones, asked.

            “Oh yes ma’am,” Jessie agreed, shooting a look at Jenna- who still had her mouth open, about to contradict. The 12 girls were ushered out of the cars and were met on the doorstep by the orphanage owner, Emma Brady. She was small and skinny with blonde hair flying out of her ponytail and a smile on her face. She had splotches of paint on her sweatpants and hoodie. The girls could instantly tell she had been up all night getting ready.

            “C’mon in ladies. I’m Emma. Welcome to your new home!” she greeted. Emma gestured for them to follow her inside. Reluctantly, they did so. Several walls had been knocked down, so that the main floor consisted of a connecting kitchen and dining room branching off into a small living room. A staircase ran alongside a wall leading to 8 small rooms.

            “Just set your bags on the floor, dinner’s on the way.” Emma said, leading them to the dining room. The room was a cream color (the kitchen white), and there was no décor up- just a long wooden table with 14 hickory chairs. Emma took her place at one head of the table and the girls filed in the chairs.  The chair at the opposite head of the table remained empty. The girls looked around anxiously. It was better than their orphanage, but it was kind of plain- almost dreary.

            “I ordered pizza to celebrate your coming. The delivery guy should be here soon.” Emma smiled, determined to make a good first impression. Silence. “Thank you. I’m sure that will be great.” Jessie said. “I’m Jessie Taylor, by the way.”

            “Nice to meet you, Jessie. Now I’m afraid I didn’t have much time to look over everyone’s files so you’ll have to introduce yourself,” replied Emma.

“Let’s have the youngest describe the oldest, like we did at our last home.” Beth chipped in. Emma nodded eagerly. Beth leaned over to Lacey and whispered what to do. Lacey immediately said, “Jessie is really nice, and pretty, and funny, and she looks outs for me…and…that’s it.” Jessie leaned over and tickled Lacey, making her burst into fits of giggles.

     Claire, catching on to the game, stood up and said, “Beth Greene is the most talented superstar on the entire planet!” she bowed and sat back down.

Hannah added, “Amy Hunter is daring, loud, talkative, and stuff.” “Wendy Mason is quiet and shy, but she’s an amazing writer,” Stacey told Emma. The other girls looked over at Wendy, unaware of her hidden talent.

     Nikki seemed lost for words for a moment. “Jenna is really smart and honest-she fixed our old microwave in 3 minutes last year.” Kay chimed, “Cassidy is dramatic and girly and obsessed with fashion stuff.” “Well Kay is dreamy and imaginative but she always gets the job done.” Cassidy teased.

Jenna paused for a moment. She smiled slyly, with a gleam in her eye, and said, “Nikki is an activist obsessed with all that eco-whatever, but she’s got a secret.” She dragged out the last part in a cruel sing-song voice. Before anyone could interfere, the doorbell rang. Emma hurried to get the pizza.

“Jenna.” Beth and Jessie scolded in unison.

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Nikki choked, unable to look anyone in the eye.

There was silence as Emma returned with 3 large boxes of cheese pizza. “Hey! Let’s finish the game! I wanna turn!” Lacey protested.

Wendy turned to Stacey and said, “Stacey is a computer whiz who puts others first.” Stacey smiled.

“Well, although Hannah likes sports and mud and all that blech, she’s a natural comedian.” Cassidy said, pretending to roll her eyes.

“Claire is crazy, dramatic and a big ball of energy!” Beth declared.

“Lacey is the kindest, sweetest, and most ticklish girl I know.” Jessie concluded, tickling Lacey for good measure.

“Oh, and we all have our birthdays in a different month.” Amy put in. “Lacey is six and from there it’s perfectly 8-16, meaning everyone has a different age. But Jessie and Beth are both 17.”

Emma applauded. “Good job girls! Now, I only have 6 rooms with bunk-beds, so I left it up to you to decide your roommate.”

     At the exact same moment, everybody said another’s name. Emma looked around, confused. Kay explained, “It’s Jessie and Lacey, Beth and Amy, Cassidy and Hannah, Claire and Stacey, Jenna and Wendy, and Nikki and moi. Duh.” Emma smiled.

     “Great. We’ll get takeout occasionally, but I ask that each room is in charge of making one meal each week. I can help if you want. There are whiteboards on your door so you can decorate it however you want. Each room has a pad of paper on the desks in your rooms. If you need anything from the store, put it on the list. I’ll collect them on Friday nights and go shopping Saturday mornings. I am to tutor you every weekday. In the morning I teach ages 6-11 and in the afternoons its ages 12-17. I expect each room to be clean just about every day- how and when you clean are up to you. Any questions?”

Jenna’s hand went up, “How many days until we get out of here?”

     Emma’s face fell for a moment, but she smiled and answered, “Since today is January 1st, you have exactly 365 days with me. Then the state will come and you can decide whether you stay with me or go back to your old place.”

“364 days to go,” Jenna muttered under her breath.


To Be Continued



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