Young writer receives honorable mention

SIDNEY — Mara Flood, 12, of Sidney, received honorable mention in the April 2017 Cricket League writing competition. For this contest, each entrant was asked to submit an original story about a great escape.

Mara’s name appears in the Cricket League section of the September 2017 Cricket magazine, and her story, “One Million Fireflies,” is posted at Cricket features the best short stories, poems, and articles by the world’s finest children’s authors and is illustrated by the best artists from here and abroad.

Mara, daughter of Scott and Cheryl Flood, of Sidney, is in the seventh-grade and is home schooled. She enjoys soccer, piano, reading and cooking.

“The theme for the story contest was ‘Great Escape.’ I thought that maybe instead of having someone physically escape, I could have someone escape in their thoughts,” said Mara of how she came up with the idea for the story. “Around the time that I wrote the story, there were a lot of fireflies outside so that’s how the fireflies came into the story. I entered the contest because I had never entered a story contest before, and this one looked like fun since I had an idea for the story.”

In each issue, award-winning Cricket sponsors a different and unique writing or art competition, with hundreds of entries pouring in each time from enthusiastic Cricket readers all over the world. Winners receive recognition and a certificate, and the best entries are published in the magazine and on its Web site for children:

Founded in 1973, Cricket is published by Cricket Media, also publisher of Babybug, the magazine for infants and toddlers ages 6 months to 3 years, Ladybug for children ages 3 to 6, Spider for ages 6 to 9, Cicada for teens and young adults, the nonfiction magazines Click, Ask, and Muse, and the Cobblestone line of history and world culture magazines for young people.

Cricket Editorial Board members include Cricket Founder Marianne Carus, Roger Sutton, Ann Thwaite, Katherine Paterson, Linda Sue Park, and Anita Silvey. Carolyn Digby Conahan is staff artist. Now available in both print and digital editions, for more information visit

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Staff report