The attractively-bound edition would look at home on the small-press shelves of any well-curated bookstore. This year’s Quiddity, UCC’s creative writing journal, offers 114 pages of student submissions. (Please browse the attached flipbook.)
“The goal is to showcase student personal writing and encourage the artistic voice of the school,” says English teacher Julian Bauld, the publication’s staff adviser along with colleague Dr. Dale Churchward.
Highlights include “Good Mornings” by John Lutz, IB2, on page 10. (One line reads: Horizons should be blue, and beds unmade, and I with you.) It won the Ponton Prize for poetry. This is the first year in the publications’ 23-year-year history in which appears a Mandarin translation, from the English (from the Italian), of “The Inferno of Dante” by Ziyang Wang, IB1, on p. 104. As well, “12 Haikus on Toast” is what it says, a fun, collaborative effort by various students and faculty members.
Bauld likes the fact the journal showcases students whose writing talents might otherwise be dormant. “Some of these students wouldn’t necessarily identify as the writing type,” he says. The submissions emerge as both class assignments or personal projects. For example, many submissions are from English teacher Terence Dick’s Foundation Year “Writers’ Craft” course. And on page 25, you’ll find “Seasonings” by Tristan Hopper, IB2. It’s a villanelle, a 19-line poem with a strict poetic form that was originated by Medieval troubadours.
“Tristan probably wouldn’t have written one of those without someone commanding him to do so,” says Bauld, wryly. “Now he has a lovely poem about winter and has given a hand in reviving a poetic tradition.”
This year will mark the first time the publication will be submitted to a contest of student writing offered by the Illinois-based National Council of Teachers of English. Quiddity was founded by longtime English teacher Wayne Tompkins. He retired in 2004 after 30 years with the College.