I’ll admit, Throwback Thursday is a segment I’ve looked forward to starting all week. Let’s all get on the nostalgia train and go waaay back in my writing ‘career’…for a bit of fun in my creative vault :P
The Outcasts was my first true labor of love. It represents many milestones to me. My entire 7th grade year was devoted to pre-production on an Outcasts movie, and that is how I came to complete my first screenplay at the age of 12. The Outcasts is a 60 page, poorly formatted script about four teenagers at a boarding school. Each nicknamed underdog – Mick, Caramel, MD, and Wit – arrived there due to stressful life circumstances (respectively – divorce, dead parents, the mob, and abusive/criminal parents). Despite the YA melodrama, the characters have much humor and are uplifted through their friendship to each other. Most of the characters were just alter egos of my friends, and the situations were often based on real lunch time conversations.
The movie never happened, of course. But before it was a script, I wrote The Outcasts as a novel. Despite it being incomplete, it was the farthest I got into an original WIP until I was 20 years old.
On some levels, The Outcasts has an authenticity about it – presenting tweens as they really are because it was written by one – that I can consult in later YA projects. But I will probably never revamp this project for publication, as it’s really quite derivative. The market doesn’t need any more tortured, abandoned, teen angst stories!
Still, I mined my email accounts and was happy to find the first seven chapters of that novel. Here is an unaltered excerpt, written when I was 11 years old, of chapter one.