Meet Sammy, one of our amazing Story Writing Club writers!
She recently entered the Coles Little Treehouse Competition, for which she wrote and illustrated a 'wild and wacky' story to be judged by Andy Griffiths himself. And out of over 6000 entries from across the country, she was one of the top 100 winners!
Her writing won her family a $100 Coles Myer gift card, 100 books for her school, and a book for the Indigenous Literacy Foundation.
Congratulations Sammy! We're incredibly proud of you, and so happy to hear about your words (and wackiness) having a positive impact on the world.
Read on to learn more about Sammy's book, her creative writing process, her advice for other young writers, and flying eyeballs.
Hi Sammy! We were so excited to hear about your Little Treehouse book. Can you tell us what the story is about?
I wrote multiple stories with the same idea of a time-travelling machine that takes Andy and his best friend, Terry, to dino-times to meet their past selves. But I guess what gave me the idea was my interest in the future and the Stone Age!
If you wrote a blurb for the book, what would it be?
I think the blurb would be: A ridiculous twisted tale of the number 1 writer, Andy, and his best friend, Terry! They went on a dangerous journey to the STONE AGE and bumped into their past selves on a quest to save their story writing careers! Find out more by reading this short story!
All stories - even the ones we don't finish - take us writers on a bit of a journey. Can you tell us about your journey with this story? What was the planning, writing, and editing process like?
I have one word to describe the editing and writing process: STRESSFUL! But fun! Just to get this done, I woke up really early and stayed up super late that day to finish it off! I first had to download the template, then plan out how the story was going to go and it was hard because I had to think of the story and the setting from scratch! Next, I had to type the story and think of which words would make my story. At the beginning, the boss fires Andy and Terry so I used very strong and harsh words to show that he was FUMING with anger. I also had to give it a boost, or sizzling start.
Then it was almost time for the stress to finally END!
The next step was the illustrations. I started drawing and thinking of what to do on each page. I was sweating from the stress! Thankfully my mum had a really good idea. We were permitted to use some of their pictures from previous mini books and my mum said, “Oh maybe you can use the pictures and change them and edit them a bit.” I think that my mind nearly exploded from Mum’s idea! Then I designed the front cover and coloured it, and I used a bit of an easter egg! So in the mini treehouse books, there’s only 24 in the collection and they are all labelled. On the top of my front cover, I added a number and the number was no. 25!!
FINALLY, the last step was formatting, and it wasn’t very hard actually. I took photos of the drawings, copied and pasted them and moved around the writing to the fit so it looked good.
It was so hard, but it’s great to see my story completed!
How did you feel when you clicked 'submit'?
Nerve-racked, my heart was ready to just jump out of my chest. I was sweating, my heart was thumping really fast, I was so scared. It was all worth the stress, though. When I won second place I just read the e-mail over and over again, trying to process what was happening! I jumped out of my chair screaming, “MUM, DAD I WON! I REALLY WON!” It was just the best feeling ever!
What would you say to another young writer who was thinking of sharing their work - either in a competition or in another way?
Never ever give up. Just keep going, even if you don’t win. Just keep trying and this hard work will pay you back and hit you hard! If I did it I bet you can do it too. And if this is truly your passion, just go for it. Go out there and try something new, you’ll be working so hard and it will pay you off one day and you will also be screaming “MUMMY DADDY, I WON THE WRITING COMP!” Go the extra mile and it will make you feel so AMAZING after!
What would be a key feature of your dream treehouse?
My dream feature in a treehouse would be a room full of puppycorns, and if anyone is wondering what a puppycorn is, it’s where a puppy or dog meets a unicorn then BOOM! Puppycorn!
Okay, last question. It's an important one! Would you rather be a sea monster, a splat in a hat, or a flying eyeball?
I think I would be a flying eyeball so I could see space and maybe make a few friends, instead of battling the people as a monster! If I were to live in space, I feel like it would be very lonely BUT, if I took everyone with me, I wouldn't be lonely or bored anymore! =D
Thanks so much for sharing your insights Sammy!
If you would like to join our Story Writing Clubs in 2021, we would love to meet you!
Enrolments are now open.
Where young writers (and some older ones) write.
All material is published with the provision that it is the writer's own work. If any material submitted to us for publication is found to be copied or in any way constitutes an infringement of someone else's copyright, it will be removed. Copyright remains with the young authors.