Check out the 2017-18 YAC Zine by clicking the image above. It will take you to a PDF download link. Happy summer reading from the YACs.
By Emma Davis
By Aiyana Spear
The christmas lights in front of her were distracting- preventing any form of productivity. Her eyes glazed over as she stared at them, patterns embedding themselves on memory. The air outside still smelled of rain, the type of rain that falls on freshly cut grass and creates a world that smells clean- air that hasn’t been marred by pollution, air you can breathe without toxicity. But inside was dusty and claustrophobic, any trace of the rain that had fallen appeared to disappear. Sometimes she wasn’t sure if she imagined it falling- if all of the rain had just been her imagination.
Are christmas lights still christmas lights when it’s no longer December?
You never wanted them to be taken down, the idea that lights have always been used during winter when the darkness gets to be too much is poetic, but sometimes you need those lights in spring too. The world needs those lights.
The water droplets still falling from her hair, her clothes, her backpack, reminded her of their existence- reminded her that the water had fallen. Perhaps such reminders aren’t necessary for most people, but she has never been entirely like most people. Her hands traced the edges of her pen, long ago having stopped writing what with the christmas lights twinkling at the edges of every thought.
You clicked the pen in a disjointed pattern, ignoring the glares that people sent your way every so often. Sometimes quiet was perfection and sometimes quiet was the monster and the clicking pen was the only way to fight. It’s why you listened to stories to fall asleep to or why your foot tapped or why music during work-time was the only way to get things done.
It feels as though we’re at the top of the roller coaster, about to go hurtling down into the unknown.
It feels as though we’re in an exit only lane, driving driving
From a highway that we know and can drive without thinking
To a highway with 6 lanes
cars hurtling past
The clicking pen was a new distraction, the patterns of the lights ebbed away and now it all was that sound. It wasn’t terrible, but it was something to focus on. Perhaps she was looking for excuses. It has always felt impossible to be productive when there are so many things to do for so many different people. She stood up, realizing that the room was incredibly claustrophobic. Walking outside, she worried that all eyes were on her.
They always say that everybody is worried about everyone else looking and so nobody is looking
But based on us judging people is that really true?
You have always loved movement. And no, not the sports type but all facets of movement. It’s incredible what bodies can do. Fingers contorting into a language, feet creating rhythm, the elegance is immeasurable.
The air outside was cleaner than usual, and it was more evident that it had rained than when she was inside staring through a window. The grass was dewy, sure to soak socks if one wanted to take off shoes. Sometimes she missed the way the world had looked before the smog filled up the air- before everyone had to use oxygen masks to even step foot outside. Rain was the only time this world even seemed like that one. The pollution was at least washed away for a few seconds.
You stared out of the window, distracted from the pen clicking if only for a few seconds. The rain reminded you of the world when you were little, and watching others appreciate it as much as you felt like connection- connection that seemed so rare in this stuffy room.
Sometimes all we want is connection
Aiyana shared this with Abigail
By Leo Earl
Any various devices for producing light or sometimes heat.
An object of little to no importance to most people.
If I had known yesterday that the lamp would be moved, I wouldn’t have bothered to show up. I mean, it’s not just about the lamp. It’s the uneasy feeling that everything has changed. I left this room two months ago and I wanted it to stay exactly the same. I wanted to come back, have to slightly reposition my chair, and put my notebook on the table to my right. I wanted to watch the same crowd of people parade in, one after the other. But now the lamp is moved and everything else has changed with it.
A physical representation of the impact of change on one particular individual.
The thing about communities is that they need constant maintenance and a level of consistency in order to survive. But, if those communities are left unattended for too long, then new people come in and start messing with it. Suddenly, the table is on the wrong side, there is a clock counting out our fleeting time together, the arms of my chair are covered with a different fabric, and the lamp is in the wrong place. But still, I am here.
Our time here is forever frozen in a collection of words
The cold echos of past moments
Still reverberating around the room
They have left their ghosts here for me to discover
My other anchors across the room
Slipping away from my hands
Taking the living, breathing moments down with them
Symphonies of laughter still seem to bounce around the walls
Fading away with every second ticked off by the clock
Tables look empty without the collection of juice boxes
And gummy wrappers slowly building up as the hours go by
The room looks empty and cold without the overflow of chairs and lives
I moved the lamp back
Placed the clock out of sight
Hid the fabric covers
Put the table on the right side
A word, like most, that begins to sound incorrect the more often you say it.
YAC is a group of slightly crazy teenagers, and I use that word fondly.
Laughter colors the walls of the room that we meet in, and I doubt that color will ever fully go away.
Every person brings their own skillsets, and somehow those skills create a conglomeration of incredible stories.
We are crazy, and nerdy and if you were a fly on the wall it might scare you a little bit, but we are YAC, and laughter fills our lungs. by Aiyana Spear
Chewing the shadows
Cutting open words
As building blocks
For your soul
by Abigail Munson
YAC is low-key a bunch of crazy high school students that get together on Wednesdays and talk about a lot of stuff, mostly writing, but sometimes weird stuff, like Adam’s irrational fear of a pea, or Lucy’s hue of purple or how Katy can’t spell, but none of us can spell, really, or form a complete sentence (like this one – it’s gone on way too long) but we still call ourselves writers, and that’s good and all because we’re all really good writers, but we all write different stuff, like Abigail who writes like a ton of poetry with all those really clever biblical allusions, and Madison who writes all this fantasy stuff that’s really cool, and always gets confused with Madeline, for some reason who always writes like way too much and can’t even finish this damn sentence, and Cassidy, who has like, a pretty weird sense of humor , but that’s cool and all, and Ellen usually writes about herself, but sometimes it’s about Hello Kitty instead (and maybe Hello Kitty should be considered a member of YAC) and Aiyana writes descriptive essays, and Sierra writes a little bit of everything, and Thalia dresses like all darkly, which is weird because her writing is so bright, and I think that’s everyone, except for Jesaka, who has to be included, of course, and I’m not sure what she writes, but I’m sure it’s as good as the prompts she gives us, and that’s YAC, 🙂 by Madeline Dean
A place where I thought new things and mastered new thought. A room where lives were created. A group of great people I will carry with me forever. A space where anything is possible and magic can happen. A mindset where kindness and friendship are born. A home where new worlds are traveled and explored together. by Katy C McDonald
YAC is somewhere I’m understood
YAC is splendiferous
YAC is where writers can be themselves
YAC is where friendships begin and creativity never has to end
YAC is like a convening of Powerful sorcerers
YAC is home
by Madison Hart
Land of misfit toys. But hey, we’re writers, what do you expect. Oddly enough, there’s very little writing involved, just a lot of inside jokes about writing. Or about the snack table. Or about each other. Mostly about each other. by Thalia Medrano
There are two types of people in YAC… those who like linked stories and Cassidy. by Cassidy Nicks
A concept, a feeling.
It is not merely our group name,
It is green carpets, plush chairs.
It is laughter about nothing,
Laughter about everything.
It is Wednesdays and plot
holes and inside jokes.
We are YAC; YAC is within us
I know that sounds kinda
sappy, but the thing that
YAC is most, is the people.
Each year it changes,
because this people change.
At heart it is an
idea – and an idea
can go anywhere.
by Sierra Karas
by Lucy Earl
I don’t get to savor this
It’s too late.
No more arriving early
Or waiting for other people to get here
No more sunsets or snowy afternoons.
No more knots or rants about the weather.
I don’t get to savor this
No loud monologues or magic school buses
No more juice boxes or trying to figure out
How to hide the body.
I don’t get to savor this.
We will be back
But people leave
It will be wonderful
But a different wonderful.
No more seconds to tick away
No more… this (I)
Our time here forever frozen in a collection
I no longer get to savor this.
Time got on the bus
Wearing brown snow pants
He stretched his arms out
Wide, fingers pointing and
Reaching and collecting the
Flowing end of his explanation
The bus driver–
A known time waster,
A money collecting
Paid by the hour
Smacked on graying gum
With jagged canyon teeth
While bubbly spit
Situated itself on his chin
“You gotta pay”
Squeaky and rhythmic
“You gotta pay”
Time curled his arms
In like two C’s and
Pointed to the chain
Around his neck
It was heavy and industrial
Even heavier holding
A Gold padlock
It seemed an anchor
Keeping his nikes on
The crumby ground
He licked his lips
“The raging rocks
And shivering shocks
Shall break the locks
Of prison gates.”
The bus driver unperturbed
With midsummer sweat stains
And a fairy circle of white hair
Like a laurel wreath decorating
An angry pimply dome
Regurgitated his predestined line:
“You gotta pay”
Time laughed, big and sweet
“Oh we all gotta pay man, but time passes for free, no amount of coin will change that”
Pictures that won’t stay
Cabinets that won’t stay
Lost boys that won’t stay
Stranded ghosts, they won’t
her leave the window, won’t give
Time to run, it’s time to