Schooner Thomas Hoyne and Merlyn’s Pen

Schooner Thomas Hoyne by Peter Mello Aug 7 2008

Last night we returned from a short but great vacation with some friends in a cabin in the Adirondacks.

Today I traveled over to Newport to have lunch with a friend Paul Morse who is the owner of the beautiful little schooner Thomas Hoyne. He invited his friend, Jim Stahl, who is the founder of a terrific teen writing program called Merlyn’s Pen. From their website:

SINCE 1985, Merlyn’s Pen has produced and supported school programs that promote creativity, critical thinking and writing, and self-acceptance. Its most public service since 2001 has been the New Library of Young Adult Writing, which showcases compelling works of fiction and nonfiction authored by America’s teens, grades 6-12. All the works in the New Library appeared first in Merlyn’s Pen: The National of Student Writing, published between 1985 and 2001. The models and standards displayed in the New Library give heart to beginning writers; to advanced teen writers, the Library is an online resource of successful models to explore, engage, and emulate.

This summer Merlyn’s Pen introduced a new maritime themed program called Down to the Sea with Pen and Paper. From all accounts this sold out program aboard Ocean Classroom Foundation’s schooner Harvey Gamage was a smashing success in it’s launch year. Nandini Jayakrishna of The Providence Journal Bulletin wrote a great piece entitled Week’s sail a voyage of discovery for teen writers.

“A lot of time spent writing is spent not writing,” he (Stahl) said. “In terms of hours of day, they were doing more sailing than writing, [but] that’s the writer’s way –– gathering experience that informs those brief inspired moments when the pen is actually on paper.”

Stahl’s already hard at work in creating next year’s program. Better hurry before that one fills up too!

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Peter A. Mello

Father, son. Lifelong mariner, student of leadership, photographer. Professional creative placemaker.

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