CCHS Student Writers Win Again

Lit Mag student editors (l-r) Patrick Hudson, Daniel Barley, Caitlin Friess and faculty sponsor Ms. Tekoa Simpkins - Photo Edward Leonard

CCHS student editors continue to rack up awards for literary excellence. Close on the heels of Clarke’s yearbook taking first place honors in the Virginia High School League’s regional championship, the CCHS 2010 literary arts magazine has now been awarded VHSL’s “trophy class” honors.

At Monday night’s school board meeting three student editors for the publication, editor-in-chief Daniel Barley, Caitlin Friess and Patrick Hudson, described the magazine’s operations and editing style to school board members.

“Our literary arts magazine is kind of like the yearbook but with literature instead of student pictures” Daniel Barley told the school board members.

The publication, referred to as “Lit Mag” by students, is a student-led magazine production effort that spans writing and composition skills, soliciting content from the CCPS student body as well as layout and page design using professional software packages including Adobe InDesign and Creative Suite publishing and layout packages.

Lit Mag contains not only student writing, but art and occasional musical compositions as well.

Each of the student editors read a selection from the magazine for the school board members and the audience. Patrick Hudson honored classmate Barley by reading a humorous composition written by Barley.

During the presentation several school board members asked the students about the editorial philosophy employed for selecting and arranging the magazine’s layout. Barley provided a well-reasoned response saying that Lit Mag’s staff works hard to allow the literature to speak for itself rather than attempting to interject their own preambles and contextual descriptions.

The poise of the three young writers during the presentation alluded to the leadership skills that clearly must have played a direct role in the “trophy class” achievement.

Student editor Caitlin Friess told the school board that the literary magazine is self-supporting through publication sales in the CCHS lunchroom and through coffee-house fundraisers held at CCHS once every nine weeks.

CCHS’s coffee-house gatherings have long enjoyed a tradition of success with area teens. Coffee-house performances include music, poetry reading, comedy acts as well as food and refreshments.

English teacher Mrs. Tekoa Simpkins is the faculty sponsor of the literary arts magazine.


  1. Anne Neville says:

    Patrick! This is an excellent article. Literature is something which will help define you as an intellect with varied ideals! Keep up the good work!

  2. It’s nice to see that Patrick is following in the footsteps of his father, John. All three of these students will go far in life. They have their heads screwed on and have wonderful parents who are involved and give a darn.

  3. Patrick will also be making his theatrical debut as Doc Gibbs in Our Town this November. I hope everyone will come support this wonderful show!