Telluride High School
Scholastic Art and Writing Award, national awards program for talented high school students
“My name is Madeline Herman and I am from Ophir, Colorado. Ophir is a small town of about 300 people, so I go to school in Telluride, which is about half an hour away. I recently graduated high school and will be attending Colorado College in the fall.
Writing has always been an important part of my life, along with reading. I have always had the desire to create worlds and create realities different from my own. I guess it’s a form of escapism and a way I get to explore my imagination. This story, Among the Cherry Blossoms, is one that I resonated deeply with. My mom and I have a very strong bond and throughout many of my short stories, there has always been a mother-daughter aspect. I wanted to explore a relationship that had been broken and needed to be healed, but was on a shortened timeline.
Not only is the mother-daughter aspect of the story important to me, the element about sexuality is as well. I have struggled with my own for a long time and recently came out as lesbian. Being accepted for my sexuality was something that I personally never struggled with, but was always terrified of becoming a reality. I needed to write a story where in the end, the main character is accepted for who she is by the person who meant the most to her. Overall, this story is very important to me and I am very grateful to have shared it with people.”