Best Midwestern High School Writing 2013 Winners

Night Eyes

Mayeesha Nayeem

This paper was written for a free writing assignment that originally only needed to be one page. Mayeesha clearly became invested in her story and decided to flesh it out. This piece combines a few subgenres to create an interesting world—one of fantasy, horror, and ninja-like young people who are responsible for keeping the rest of the populace safe while doing so in secret. What Mayeesha does well, aside from world-building, is believable, natural dialogue that moves the story forward and weaves undercurrents of possibilities between the main characters. While there may be hints of some romance later between the two comrades-in-arms, Mayeesha creates a strong female character that girls can admire—not a fragile girl who needs rescuing. This falls in line with current trends in literature and film that audiences find most satisfying. Mayeesha also creates well-drawn action scenes that grip the reader. We find ourselves holding our breath a little as Macy and Blake battle the demon in cinematic fashion. This story provides entertaining adventure and promises more than that—if I can convince Mayeesha to expand it to novel length. I know I’d like a look into that Signer Academy and the mystery surrounding Blake’s mother.

To be answered by the student

I found myself wanting to write more and more of this piece but then I remembered there is a maximum word limit. This story was incredibly fun for me to write, especially while starting to create the friendship and relationship of Macy and Blake. I felt naturally comfortable writing out each part of the story. I was able to develop my voice and my writing style throughout the characters’ conversations and the overall action in the plot. This story went through about five rewrites to get to where it is but all of that work feels one hundred percent worth it. I was debating on how to end the story, as the conclusion leaves a lasting impression on the reader. Ultimately, I chose to stop at a point where I could continue further if I so pleased. There is a high probability that this is not the end of this particular saga and so, the characters of Macy Soul and Blake Damon may appear in future writing pieces.