They’ve got the words

Creative writing class sells cards for Heather

Photo Caption: Amanda Ashburn’s cards express your feelings in a cheesy, but not overdone, way.

Emy Wood

According to the Greeting Card Association (yes, it really exists), Americans purchase approximately 6.5 billion greeting cards each year. That’s 6.5 billion. Cheesy hallmark sayings. A year.

Graduation, birthdays, thank-yous—finding that perfect card with the right words is a nightmare we’ve all gone through. But, thanks to the creative writing class taught by Chris Blake, associate English professor, that nightmare might just be a little less painful.

Starting at the end of February, Blake’s class of a dozen students will be selling five cards each in the campus store for $4. As an added bonus, all proceeds go to Heather Boulais and her family. I’ll let you do the math.

“I’m stoked to know that here at Union, we honestly care about people enough to take on a project like this,” said Jill Donald, sophomore language arts education major. “I think I’ll make more cards, because it’s fun and for a great cause!”

Previously, students hung their cards in the Humanities division after completing the assignment, but after a student made a card for Heather, the class decided to take their poem filled cards to the students.  

“Some of them are so evocative that I felt others would benefit from them,” said Blake, who came up with the idea. “They are a way to communicate emotion in a pithy format.”

Not sure you’ll find what you’re looking for? All the cards are different, with many students taking different approaches.

Sophomore general studies major Alexandra Ufret made her card for any occasion with the phrase “Donut ever let me go,” matching donut drawing included.

Some students, like Megan Wehling, junior English major, took the traditional route by making birthday and graduation cards. “To me, the cards signify milestones in my life that I have looked forward to and move me into a new part of my life.”

Kaylin Thurber, junior English major, decided to take a different approach with an anti-valentine’s card. “I wrote humorously mean cards,” she said. “One line reads, ‘But they’re probably doing something fun today. . . not thinking of you. . . with someone else.’ It’s not a nice card, but I like it.”

Don’t believe this project was an easy task. With generous funding from the Humanities division for resources, the class came up with the ideas and words all on their own. Students are also required to make each of the five cards to be sold themselves.

“The most challenging part was just starting them,” commented Donald. “Once I had ideas for what I wanted to do, the picture just came with it easily, and the words weren't that hard.”

“It’s an opportunity for some greeting cards that aren’t stupid,” said Blake. “We’ve all looked through many greeting cards and thought, ‘Come on.’” Now, the creative writing class has found a way to give you something other than run-of-the-mill cards that will hopefully leave you thinking “perfect!” Drop by the campus store and find out.

Emy is a sophomore studying communication.