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Writer of the Month

April's Writer

April's Writer

Writer of the Month

Writer of the Month

Agent Name

Chicken

Real Name

Vakaris

Agent Name

Chicken

Real Name

Vakaris

Vakaris

Vakaris

What’s your favorite book and who is your favorite author?

¿Cuál es tu libro favorito y quién es tu autor favorito?

My favorite book is Ready Player One by Ernest Cline.


Do you have any special hobbies or talents?

¿Tienes pasatiempos especiales o talentos?

I love to build computers and staying up to date with all of the different technological improvements.


What is your favorite thing about writing?

¿Cuál es tu cosa favorita a cerca de la escritura?

My favorite thing about writing is that it turns all of my thinking into a physical object. This way, I can do a better job of thinking about what I’m writing about since I try to build on my previous ideas without rambling repetitively. 


What’s your favorite memory of 826CHI?

¿Cuál es tu recuerdo favorito de 826CHI?

My favorite memory of 826 is when everyone from Teen Writers Studio went to the Poetry Foundation to read our pieces. I loved this because it did a great job summarizing all of the amazing work we did throughout the entire year; it was also very enjoyable to hear everyone read their pieces in front of a live audience.


What was your favorite piece to write at 826CHI, and why is it your favorite?

"Handmade Clones" is my favorite piece because of my inspiration for the work. During High School Writers Camp, my writing group went to the Murakami exhibit and I was in awe at the works with the smiling flowers. Those flowers were all the same but the happiness seemed almost as if it was artificial in some way. I related this to myself because I feel like sometimes my personality is created more through copying other people than what I do by myself.


Do you have writing advice for other students?

¿Tienes consejos de escritura para los otros alumnos?

Don’t stop to think about how you can improve your writing while you’re writing. Get all of your main ideas down on paper first, then revise your piece.



What do you want to do when you’re an adult?

¿Que quieres hacer cuando seas grande?

I want to take a week off from work and travel to multiple countries across the world. It sounds like a huge change of scenery that I think would greatly benefit my life if I would get bored of work in my adult life.


What’s something else you want the world to know about you?

¿Que es otra cosa quieres que el mundo sepa de ti?

I would like the world to know I was in the music video “Slow Down” by The Academy Is….


If you could go anywhere tomorrow, where would you go?

¿Si podrías a cualquier parte del mundo mañana, donde irias?

I would go to Japan because I have been craving ramen like crazy recently and I want to get the most authentic, delicious ramen ASAP.

Our work together

Our 826 Day event on the roof of Ace Hotel Chicago was a beautiful celebration of our community from our donors to our students and everyone in between (pictured above is 826CHI supporter TASHA’s performance). Our book P.S. You Sound Like Someone I Can Trust  was available in the hotel’s suites, Ace Hotel Chicago has hosted our annual love-themed print show featuring work by local artists inspired by our students writing on love, and their Senior Sales Manager, Tenasha Wilcoxon, spoke to our students in After-School Tutoring & Writing’s Speakers & Snacks series about what it’s like to work at a hotel.

Our Work Together

The partnership between East Village Youth Program and 826CHI is a yearly collaboration to help students achieve their goal of being accepted into their college of choice and for many to be the first in their family to attend college. This fall, 826CHI staff and 12 volunteers worked with 13 high school seniors on their personal statements for college applications. The partnership continues in the Spring when 826CHI and volunteers will return to EVYP to support students as they apply for scholarships.  

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