Twelve (Repost)


My scribophilia began very early. As a kid I would sprawl out on my belly, printer paper on the carpet (the kind with perforated edges and holes along the sides, remember those?), penning and illustrating my own picture books.

Getting a little older, I started to focus on more serious literary work, writing a story about talking whales. I single-handedly supported the spiral-bound notebook industry with that thing.

The day I turned twelve years old, I ignored my own birthday party to start writing what I believed would be my magnum opus. (Isn’t that such a writer thing to do? “Nah, you guys go on, Ima hang out here. Alone. In the corner. Typing furiously.”) The story was called…


I had an unbridled creative fervor but not a spellcheck, it seems.

The unfinished 7000-word story was about a futuristic world in which a corrupt king has turned all the men evil and all the women into slaves. I was writing a dystopia before I knew what a dystopia was. And let me tell you, I thought I was pretty edgy.

Enter our protagonist, a coincidentally also twelve-year-old girl named Avvienya. (Avvi for short. Judge me all you want, but I still kind of like that name!) She and her mother are slaves under ~!!~Master Kamian~!!~ DUN DUN DUN. You know he’s evil because his name is Kamian. And because he says things like this:

“Look at me! I demand you look at me! You are nothing but a floor mop and sewage!”


“Speak clearly you rat-lickin girl!”

Obviously I had a knack for brilliant dialogue. Let’s check out a few more of my pearls of genius, shall we?

“M-M-Master Kamian! No! It can’t be so! It-it-it just can’t!”

“Stupid Avvi. Stupid girl. Ha! How pitiful! Ha ha!”

Here Avvi is mourning the death of her mother, Nanee:

“NANEE! No Nanee! Please say it’s not so! It’s me! Avvi! Avvienya! Why? WHY?!”

And my most favorite of all…


You tell him, girlfriend!

And a tween’s manuscript wouldn’t be a tween’s manuscript without some good old-fashioned, overly dramatic metaphors:

My eyes struggled to open. It felt like coral shells had stamped my eyes shut upon my ocean of salty tears.

My soul was tearing at the skin, trying to rip it so it could be set free.

My energy was decreasing fast. It seemed almost to have wasted away into only a few grains of sand. Each sand grain dropped from me ever so quickly.

My my, how ever so quickly, my dear! I say!

As hilarrible as these passages are, I still love reading this story. It’s been seventeen years since I leapt away from that slice of birthday cake and into the computer chair, and you know what? I actually admire twelve-year-old me. I have never been less self-conscious in my entire writing life since that story. It was pure, unfiltered, bottled-at-the-source mountain spring passion. I wrote based on nothing but impulse and imagination and what I just plain thought was cool. And even though what I shared here was chosen for its laugh factor, there were other parts that actually weren’t too shabby. They were the beginning of something, anyway – the itty bitty seedling of what would become more stories, better stories. A whole life of stories.

So for that I say… Thank you, Avvienya.

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(This was originally posted back in March 2015, but giggling at my childhood self never gets old. 😀 )


16 thoughts on “Twelve (Repost)

  1. Love this post! We’d have been such good friends age twelve if we weren’t both word-nerds hiding in our respective corners 🙂

    My parents brought a box of childhood bits and pieces out the last time they came to visit and in amongst it were a couple of notebooks from English classes from when I was about 12. Can’t say I reached the 7000 word mark but I did have a recurring character called Roderick the Vampyre who was about to go to a special school to learn all about the dark arts of blood and such. Seems I was convinced that having a Y in vampyre marked you out as a trainee and only once you’d sucked actual blood could you become ‘vampire’. Roderick was less than keen and it was mostly a bunch of “hilarious” moments of him avoiding biting anyone. Even though plenty (most) of it was terrible there’s still a bit of Roderick kicking around in me when I have fun with the fantasy genre thirty years later.

    I salute you Avvienya and your fine imaginator 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • A vampire trainee who doesn’t want to bite people – aw! That sounds so cute. 🙂 Oh, pardon, I meant vampYre. 😉 I think we all have a little of our kid selves still kicking around in us. For instance, I still unapologetically love unicorns, haha. That must have been so fun going through that box. I wish I still had more of my writings and drawings and such from when I was a wee lass. I love nostalgia and going through old things. What else was in the box? I’m curious to know more about lil Nik. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Not much more to report other than an impressive line in bad early teen haircut and clothing choices haha 🙂 I do look suspiciously like I belong to the Weasley family in one childhood pic 😯 Let’s hope we never lose our childhood entirely 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Maintaining my childhood through adulthood is the supreme ambition of my life. 🙂 Though honestly, I don’t find it that hard, because climbing trees and romping through rain puddles is TOO FUN to pass up. I wish more people did the same.

        Oh don’t even get me started on my bad fashion choices! I’ll post my silly writing from age 12 but I will never ever post my yearbook photo from the same year, hahaha.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love this so much (especially the coral shells closing over your ocean of salty tears). I’m always nervous to open up my old journals, or my three-ring binders full of short stories/unfinished novels. But when I finally do, I have the same reaction as you: half hysterical laughter, half “Hey that’s not bad!” That includes a short story I once wrote about two brothers who worked at Arby’s and had a magical oven mitt.

    Liked by 1 person

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