'My Greatest Joy': Writers, Artists Win Numerous Scholastic Awards

Student writers who won Gold Key awards
Freshmen Brett Shearer (left) and sophomore CJ Childress (right) are Gold Key winners for the Scholastic Arts and Writing competition.  (Photos by Evan Rogers)

By Evan Rogers
Eagle’s Eye Online

It’s January of 2018, and just like any day, the announcements bled from the speakers throughout Delta High School. This time it was special. These announcements would reveal the victors of the annual Scholastic Arts and Writing competition.

Thirteen Delta High School students received an award for their various pieces of writing and artwork they submitted over two months ago. Out of them, there were two Gold Keys, five Silver Keys and six honorable mentions. All of these are prestigious in the sense that the awards could assist in future scholarships; however, the highest honor a student could receive is the American Voice Award.  Freshman Brett Shearer was nominated for this award, giving Delta an American Voice representative a second year in a row.

In each state, five people are nominated for the American Voice Award, making a maximum of 250 people nationwide. The chances are slim as it is for anyone to earn the prestigious award.

Last year, Brady Pease, now a junior, was nominated for this award and went to New York City to compete. This year Shearer won the award along with his Gold Key and will advance to New York to further compete for scholarships.

Shearer’s story explores the morals of loyalty to someone if they have saved your life. When Brett heard word of his victory, he stated: “I felt perplexed as I thought I could have done so much better. I also felt more sure of my skill as a writer.”

Brett plans to continue pursuing writing through his life, but if his award-winning talent fails, he’d enjoy becoming an actor. “I plan to be a writer because my skill is my greatest pride and sharing my imagination is my greatest joy.”

A second Gold Key was awarded to sophomore CJ Childress on his pair of poems; one dedicated to deceptive people and those who oppose them, and the other about a jaded artist bored of cliche art who has a burst of creativity. Although CJ showed skill in his writing capability, he plans on pursuing the sciences in his life.

Silver Keys were awarded to several for their stories and artwork. The winning pieces of writing were Tyler Bishop, Anna Mattucci, Tristan Pickering, and Kerissa Withers. Caden Morris also won a Silver Key for his sculpture.

English teacher Mrs. Suzy Fox has all her students submit an entry to Scholastic. This leads to many people being thrown off by their sudden award.

Pickering stated: “I was very surprised. I didn’t feel that my story was that good, but I guess the judges felt differently.”

Although Silver Key winners are not continuing to New York, their stories exhibited skill that allowed recognition for their writing.

Recognition for skillful art is also given to students through the honorable mention award. Namya Coleman, Lucy East, Anthony Gullion, Abbie Harris, and Aiden Hinds all won this reward for their writing. Katelyn Wade also won for her work in ceramics.
Hinds was grateful for his recognition. “Man, when I heard my name over the announcements, I felt an instant rush of adrenaline…. I would like to thank my family, friends and all of my supporters.”  

Although all award winners are skilled in their area of writing and art, many wish to pursue other careers in their lives. Abbie Harris wants to pursue animation and character writing. Lucy East states she’d like to pursue a career in an area involving children.

All of these artists share abilities to display emotion and feeling through their work. Whether they continue to make art or write stories, this competition will give one story they can always tell.