First ‘Write out Loud’ Event Allows Students to Share Personal Writings

URBANDALE, Iowa – High school students at Urbandale High School will participate in a “Write out Loud” event for the first time Thursday night.

Write out Loud was created by three English teachers at the school who believed there was a lack of sharing written works among students.

The event allows students in Urbandale’s creative writing class to go up in front of a public audience and read personal letters, essays and more. It is meant to help the students develop confidence as authors.

Junior April Czarnecki said writing is therapeutic for her.

“I think writing is the best way to get rid of stress and everything,” Czarnecki said.

Nine students will be performing at the first Write Out Loud.

English teacher Kelli Oda-Lawler said there will be a gathering once a month for Write Out Loud.

“I think in this day and age, a lot of students go through many struggles, but they go through it alone. It’s not always just the negative, it’s the positives too. They need to be able to celebrate with each other. They also need to express themselves with each other,” Oda-Lawler said.

Creative writing teacher Jolee Donnelly said some of the topics that people will hear include: insecurities, the meaning of life, and going through a parent's divorce.

“Some tragedies have happened in their lives and things that have made them happy. Some of these pieces make you cry and some of these pieces make you laugh too,” Donnelly said.

Czarnecki said she write about her life and what she knows.

“I’m going to point out my insecurities that I have, and share with the crowd. Whoever is listening, what I go through every day with my insecurities and how I cope with them,” Czarnecki said.

Junior Maryn Gibson said she has been writing since she was a little girl.

“I like to journal, and so then I am writing about whatever I’m feeling that day, and I like that,” Gibson said.

The event is Thursday at 6:30 p.m.

The event is located at Friedrichs Coffee House on 4632 NW 86th Street in Urbandale. It is open to the public.