Sandbox ~ Creative Writing Awards


Best Drama/Dramatic Moment

Best Supporting Male Character – Anthony

Best Quote (“Welcome back to my glamorous life as a New York City dancing sensation”)


Best Historical Fiction

Best Supporting Female Character – Lucille

Best Opening Line (“Too ripe. Too soft. Too hard. It’s near impossible to find some simple, organic food nowadays and we’re in 1933 too! You’d think we’d at least know how to grow fruit by now,” complained the middle aged woman to the buck teeth brunette twirling impatiently in the Market”)


Best Mystery-Sherlock Holmes


Best Description/Sentence (“As I round the corner the wind catches my hair and my heart trips, for stretched before me is such elaborate magnificence. I cannot take it all in. It’s too much. Much too big”)

Grace Anne:

Best Fantasy

The Sandbox

For my creative writing class, we had to write the next chapter of one of our classmate’s books. I decided to do Gianna’s (check out her blog here!). I hope I did her wonderful story justice 🙂

Dear Dancers Diary,

NYC has been so much fun! I could have never imagined all of the new and exciting things I would get to do! They don’t call it the city that never sleeps for nothing, haha. All of my friends here have been really cool, they’ve taught me a ton! I guess I was pretty sheltered before.

I went home this weekend, which I was pretty nervous about. Even though I know my family means the best, they just don’t understand that this is the new and better me. I’m healthier and actually experiencing some exciting things in my life. Although, in all honesty, those green shakes that my friend keeps giving me, taste disgusting. But, it’s important that I’m in the best shape possible as a dancer, so I’ll push through it.

Anyway, when I did get home, like most mother’s, my mom was…way overly excited and freaked out. Apparently, I’m losing ‘too much weight’ and am ‘dangerously thin.’ She watched me all day, making sure I ate something at every meal. I’m really going to have to make up for it when I get back – if not before. I can’t take any chances with this.

As my mom got on her rant, my dad boarded that ship as well. You can imagine my frustration diary! They’re supposed to be happy for me – I’m finally reaching my full potential! And when I tried to explain that I was full, she just gave me the look. I may have had a yelling match with them, they just don’t understand.

Sunday came around and I winced, remembering that I was going to have to go to church today. Not that I dislike church, or anything like that, but really, so early in the morning? Nevertheless, I pulled on one of my fancy dresses that I haven’t worn in weeks. It had always been one of my favorites, so I was pretty excited to try it on. For some reason, it doesn’t fit me anymore. Even though I was sad about not being able to wear it anymore (well, after today), I’m pumped that I’m losing weight!

Going to the service and seeing all of my old friends, I felt kind of like an oddball out. Everyone kept sending me concerned looks. Am I still not pretty enough? Or good enough? I would have thought they would be at least semi-happy for me, but no.

God and I haven’t been on the best of terms lately, but I’ve been really busy and under a ton of stress, so I feel like He understands. The pastor began his sermon, and sheesh, can’t a girl catch a break? I swear he was looking at me the entire time. It was the longest hour of my entire life as this awful feeling kept rising up in me, going on about how I should not be hanging with my new friends and how I need to spend time with God more. Yeah, I ended up leaving early. Everyone’s always going on about how God is all love, so I really don’t think that He would put that kind of guilt on me – especially when He knows the pressure I’m already under.

I left a note for my family and quickly left to go back to NYC, where I belong.

Mad Lib ~ The Sandbox

Words: noun







verb (-ing)



Mad Lib: While her ______ was not sight, it did _____ Isla something most ______ people were not privileged to have – a way to ____ the world. _____ could see the outline of the world in black and white through her magic. It was like a ______ sense that sent ______ into her mind. However, exerting her magic could often be _______. Which was why she had decided to have daily sessions ______ she stretched herself, in the hopes that _____ would increase her endurance.

Original: While her magic was not sight, it did afford Isla something most blind people were not privileged to have – a way to see the world. Isla could see the outline of the world in black and white through her magic. It was like a sixth sense that sent images into her mind. However, exerting her magic could often be draining. Which was why she had decided to have daily sessions where she stretched herself, in the hopes that it would increase her endurance.

©2017 Lanie Dean All Rights Reserved.

Magic in a Pangram

“Alison Jane!” came the loud voice, from a plump woman with a peacock-feathered hat perched on her head. But don’t let appearances fool you, this fifty-five-year-old was very skilled…in magic. Catharine Jones was one of the best enchantress’ around, and my teacher. Doubtfully, she had taken me on as her pupil – really, she had only obliged because of who my parents were. Earnest and Eveline Jane were known for discovering a lost forest of magical animals – thought to be extinct – and using their magical talent, had managed to increase the number despite their only being one of each. Fame and fortune had come with that, hence, why a well-known enchantress such as Catharine would come to teach me.

Glaring at me, she huffed and stated in a slightly shrill voice, “I told you, not to make the rat explode!” Helplessly, I bit my lip tightly and looked down – suddenly fascinated by my sparkly, silver flats. In truth, it had been an accident, though I wasn’t particularly horrified by it. Just thinking of rats, mice, and snakes gave me the shivers. Killing such a disgusting and rather creepy creature, was not the absolute worst thing.

“Let yourself feel the magic Alison,” instructed Catharine for what must have been the hundredth time. Mustering up all the magical senses I could, I desperately tried to do as she had said…but that is easier said than done.

Nervously, I looked around and saw my teacher collapse into a chair in defeat. Over the floor, hovered ten just-appeared gray and white kittens – meowing pitifully, but looking perfectly adorable. Positively thrilled at the cinnamon roll-like creatures, I could not help but smile at each one and carefully sat the kittens on the red and black rug.

Quirking an eyebrow up, Catharine heaved a heavy breathe. “Really? Kittens? What will your mother and father say…I’m supposed to be teaching you professional magic!” Slyly, I replied with, “Well, you know they are the most animal loving people there are. They did find all those magical creatures, after all.”

The bottom of her purple skirt bellowed out as she began pacing, then she groaned loudly when she saw what had trotted into the room. Utopia, my pet unicorn, came up to me in all of her brilliant white glory. Very elegant, she carefully nuzzled me with her head – making a contented noise when I stroked her coat.

“Why-why – ” stuttered Catharine, at a loss for what to say. Xerces…I thought, mind wondering – thinking of the handsome, young phoenix trainer.

“You are going to be the death of me,” she muttered sullenly, once more dropping into the massive velvet chair. Zipping out of the room, I did not wait for the rest of her speech.