August Wilson Youth Writers Camp shares kids’ creative writing (and extends the season)

In its third year, the August Wilson Youth Writers Camp transformed into a virtual experience in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout the summer, participating middle school students discussed their passion for poetry, plays, short stories and songwriting.

The work of August Wilson was part of the discussions, too. Wilson believed that our own voices and communities are essential to our art. As part of the program, kids explore their unique writing voices while looking at Wilson’s influences.

The Youth Writers Camp, presented by the August Wilson African American Cultural Center, extended beyond the season with free monthly sessions planned for Sept. 19, Oct. 17 and Nov. 14. Register here.

Here are just a few examples of the kids’ work:

Kathrine Liu, 10:

Anger rushing through you, you wonder why someone would do such an awful thing, you start looking at things from the enemy’s point of view and realize that you can be an enemy too, sorrow builds up inside you as you realize that nobody is good and you both are enemies, which turns into forgiveness.

Itzela Wiley, 13:

“Break the boxes”

I’m tired of

All those boxes made

by society


They say

Boy or girl

Black or white

Never thinking

someone could be

both or



I’m mixed race and


Most importantly

I am

Me and

I am


Ochen, 13:

All the diamonds in the earth and all the pearls in the bluest seas could not retrieve the precious time you shared with me.