Interlochen Arts Academy announces winner of Virginia B. Ball Creative Writing Competition
Charlotte Lucas of Bethesda, Maryland, was selected to receive a full-tuition scholarship to attend Interlochen Arts Academy as a creative writing major for the 2022-2023 school year.
Charlotte Lucas, a high school sophomore currently attending Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda, Maryland, has been named the winner of the 2022 Virginia B. Ball Creative Writing Competition. Lucas was chosen to receive the prestigious award, which encompasses a full-tuition scholarship to attend Interlochen Arts Academy during the 2022-2023 school year as part of the Academy's celebrated creative writing program, with the scholarship being renewable for her senior year as well.
“Writing has always been a lifelong passion of mine. I applied to this competition because I wanted to be surrounded by like-minded people who want art to influence everything they do and how they see the world,” Lucas said. “I try to write my poetry outdoors as much as I can to be inspired by the natural world. Attending Interlochen will help me understand how outside readers see my writing to help make sure that I am as clear and concise as possible and help me improve my technique.”
Students in grades 8-11 competed for the award. Applicants submitted writing samples in at least two of the following genres: fiction, poetry, personal essay or memoir, screenwriting, playwriting, and hybrid genre. Lucas was selected based on the overall strength of her portfolio.
“We were so taken with the work in Charlotte's portfolio. Her voice across genres is strong, intelligent, and brave as she considers both the classical world, and the modern world,” said Brittany Cavallaro, instructor of creative writing at Interlochen. “I loved, in particular, her smart, evocative poems, and the complexity of her nonfiction. In her essay "Greek Blood and Orchids," she writes: ‘I don’t see God in pillars or white stone or shrill voices trying to soothe. I see Him, or the idea of Him, in trees with the silhouette of monsters, carcasses by rivers, and cigarette smoke drawing a heart in front of a teenager.’ I am so excited for Charlotte to join our creative writing department this fall.”
Thanks to generous grants from the Edmund F. and Virginia B. Ball Foundation, the Virginia B. Ball Creative Writing Competition Scholarship has made it possible for young writers of great promise to study creative writing at Interlochen since 2001. In turn, Interlochen's creative writing program has helped hundreds of young writers find their unique voice and expand their understanding of the craft of fiction, poetry, nonfiction, playwriting, and screenwriting.
Interlochen's one-of-a-kind creative writing program provides expert instruction to high school writers from around the world in an ideal setting. Students benefit from small class sizes and a faculty of experienced and dedicated teachers who are also professional writers. Faculty provide individualized mentorship to students in building portfolios, submitting to contests, applying to college, and honing performance skills for public reading opportunities throughout the year.
Previous recipients of the Virginia B. Ball Creative Writing Competition Scholarship have gone on to earn degrees from Cornell, Yale, Princeton, and the University of Michigan. They have won or been shortlisted for numerous awards including the Norman Mailer Award for Fiction, the PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize, Juxtaprose's Short Fiction Contest, Wigleaf's Top 50 (Very) Short Fictions, and the Pushcart Prize. They have published books and have been featured in a variety of publications including Driftwood Press, Black Warrior Review, Kudzu House Quarterly, Broadly, Entropy, and more. Twenty creative writing students at Interlochen have been named Presidential Scholars in the Arts, one of the most prestigious awards for high school graduates.
Learn more about the creative writing program at Interlochen Arts Academy.