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The first time I heard of the Alabama Writers’ Forum was at Briarwood Christian High School. At the time, I was finishing my senior year. I was busy with extra-curricular activities and college applications. If it weren’t for my creative writing teacher, Jon Carter, I might have missed my chance entirely. He had always been a supporter of my writing, and he never missed an opportunity to help me improve. He called me aside in the hallway one day and reminded me of a scholarship contest I said I would enter. It required a portfolio of my creative writing, and the postmark deadline was that day. Of course, being the thinly spread high school student I was, the contest had entirely slipped my mind. However, instead of admonishing me or leaving me to drown in my own inadequacies and failures, Mr. Carter stayed after school to help me compile the required portfolio. We talked through my writings and I printed the strongest pieces on the library printer from my flash drive. We compiled the stories in an envelope and filled out the proper forms, and, at the eleventh hour, I submitted to the contest. In a turn of events that surprised no one more than me, I won a scholarship. Read More

By Lindsay Hodgens

I could start by telling you about where I come from. I could tell you about the small, unincorporated community from which I sprang, about the twenty minute drive to the next town over's post office, about graduating in a class of 99 (about ten of which went on to university). I could tell you about all of the afternoons I spent looking out of my bedroom window at the thirty-six acres behind my house, how I counted the days until I could get out of that house, which was at least one step closer to getting out of Alabama. Read more

By Emily Cutler

I have had a passion for creative writing ever since I was a little girl. I have always loved words in general, and throughout my life their power has never ceased to amaze me. From the American Girl books to the Harry Potter series to The Help by Kathryn Stockett and A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen, literature has given me characters to sympathize with and look up to, new ways to view the world, and concepts to stand up for and believe in. The world of books has always been an incredibly important part of my life, and one of my goals in life is to contribute to that world as a writer. Read More

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