Stand Back, I’m Going to Brag on My Kid

Athena learned today that she’s going to the state finals for Power of the Pen, a statewide writing competition open to Ohio’s 7th and 8th graders (she’s one of the latter). In May, she and a bunch of other kids will go to College of Wooster and write on subjects like “You have just received shocking news. Write about it” while being timed. The winner gets a college scholarship, which is groovy. For me, however, I’m just pleased my kid is being recognized for being able to craft words well. Makes me proud. Not surprised, I should note. But proud.

51 Comments on “Stand Back, I’m Going to Brag on My Kid”

  1. As both a College of Wooster alum (GO SCOTS!) and a Power of the Pen finalist back in 1995 (crap, I’m old), that is SO AWESOME.

    Just fear the food at Lowry Hall, Athena. Sneak out and go try the Spaghetti pizza over at Matsos!

  2. Very good news– and one of the (many) joys of having children is rejoicing in their accomplishments and sharing them with those you know will be happy for you. Congratulations!

  3. Hey! Congrats! My son, Dan, is going to the statewide finals, too! One of two 7th graders from his school (Ridgeview, in Columbus). I was a judge (stand-in for a teacher with a badly broken leg) in the first two rounds and was really impressed with the program.

    Best of luck to Athena!

  4. That’s fantastic. Kelsey (you may remember her from Penguicon in 2009) and her team qualified for the finals in her seventh grade year. Neat campus to visit. Best of luck to Athena – and have fun!

  5. I see Athena’s weapon of choice is a Uniball. I use the Vision Elite 0.5mm (micro) myself, though now I try to write in my tablet (and PDA before it) to avoid having to transcribe later on.

    Anyway, super congratulations to you and Krissy…and whoever Kristy is…on the perfection of your heir. The united throne of Scalzi-Blauser is strong.

  6. Oh, BTW, congrats Athena and a potential congrats to John and Krissy’s bank account!

  7. Pass her a copy of “The Gone-Away World” and “Angelmaker” by Nick Harkaway, and remind her that Harkaway had John Le Carre as his old man.

    There you go, kid – challenge issued. It will be fun watching what she comes up with as a response.

  8. Congratulations to Athena.
    I ADORE Power of the Pen. I judged for years in Ohio first in Trotwood, to Piqua and then in Minster. When I was with the newspaper in St. Marys, I financed the program through a donation. It was a dark day when our local school district (Wapakoneta) dropped the program and despite my best efforts they have not revived it.
    Communication is the key to success in any endeavor. Mastery of the written word — in full and complete sentences, with proper spelling, grammar and punctuation and in an order that makes sense — puts a person ahead of the game.
    Best of luck as you advance, Athena, although it’s your skill that will take you far.. I’ll be wishing you well.

  9. There’s a great steakhouse in Wooster – be sure to check it out when you bring her up.

    Good luck to her!

  10. How awesome is Athena?!! All the best to her and may she really enjoy the experience! :-)

  11. Congratulations to Athena!

    It’s a good thing I already got her autograph along with yours and your wife’s. I’ll be prepared when she becomes famous!

  12. State Finals PoP contestant here, from way back in like 89 or something. Here’s a tip, DO NOT write about a hand that gets sawed off by a chainsaw and reattached, from the hand’s perspective.

  13. Someone beat me to geeking out over the Uniball Vision Elite (tip from another fan of them: try the Signo 207, it’s everything the Visions are and more), but congrats to Athena for continuing the family’s writing excellence!

  14. I’m loving her choice of pen.

    I was turned on to those by (of all people) cops. Apparently once the ink dries, they’re the hardest to change as regards to forgery. So I started signing official documents and the still-sometimes-needed checks with them, and came to love it for the pure smoothness of writing and how comfy it feels in my hand.

    So, she knows the job, and has the right tool for it when not keyboarding.

    Also, I think that while you’re the sci-fi guy, Krissy has mastered cloning.

  15. I’m a fan of the Signo 207, still have and use them, but the Vision Elite … is the closest to a fountain pen I’ve found in a roller ball. The purple VE is close to Noodler’s La Reine Mauve in color.

  16. Good luck from scotland
    We dont have those things over here unfortunatly. If we did it would make our education system far better
    Fingers crossed for you

  17. Congratulations Athena!
    I am 100% disappointed that the College of Wooster does not have a Holstein or Angus as a mascot…

  18. I was all set up to be like NOT FUNNY SCALZI, JESUS CHRIST when I saw “Wooster” because I went to college in Worcester, MA and lots of people spell it “Wooster” or “Woosta” when they think they’re being clever and it’s not goddamn clever anymore. Then I realized you meant a place that actually was named Wooster.

    That pen Athena is holding is awesome and does give a lovely smooth write; I have about four of them. I love that other people on this blog have already mentioned the pen.

    Congratulations to Athena and I am sure she will do fantasically!

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