Student writers author their own novels

Jake Sapp | Staff Writer

Sometimes a simple English course isn’t enough.

While there are a number of writing programs for Mason High School writers to find their footing in the world of the English language, some students have decided to take their skills into their own hands. A number of students have been trying to bring their writing prowess to the next level, whether it be drafting a novel, writing poetry, or working to major in English in college. Senior Cydney Davidson said that her love for writing stems from an early passion for the English language and literature.

Senior Andrew McKee is currently working on writing a fantasy novel after previously creating other short stories in prior years and McKee hopes to someday publish his writings.

“I’ve always enjoyed creative pursuits like writing and art, and for as long as I can remember I’ve always had ideas swirling around in my head,” Davidson said. “I love to read as well, so writing seemed like a natural bridge between reading and art that I could explore. I’ve been writing creatively since around third grade.”

During her writing process, Davidson said she likes to draw inspiration from the world and people around her. People, places, and emotions all play a part in how she formulates a story.

“I take a lot of inspiration from daily life, and I love to people-watch to gain insight into my characters,” Davidson said. “I like to write down little snippets of inspiration whenever I can and sometimes those pieces stitch themselves into a story.”

Davidson believes that writing is one of the easiest and most fulfilling pastimes that one can engage in, and said that although not everyone may like it, it can still offer a window into stories and people like nothing else.

“In my opinion, writing is one of the best ways to spend your time,” Davidson said. “It’s all about creativity, depth, and skill. You can create worlds inside the mind of your reader, breathe life into characters that didn’t exist before you dreamed them up. All you have to do is pick up a pencil or a laptop.”

Senior Andrew McKee is a student who has been working on multiple creative works throughout his high school career, and wants to become a published author in the future.

“Right now I’m working on a few projects, but my main focus is on a magic realism novel about a school for monster hunters,” McKee said. “The shtick being that the main character is not the chosen one, but rather his best friend is. Kind of like if Harry Potter was told from the perspective of Ron.”

Although he does not plan on making writing into a full-time career, McKee still hopes that one day his works will be published for others to enjoy while continuing his authorship hobbies on the side.

“I would absolutely love to one day have my writing published,” McKee said. “In the future, I do plan on continuing to hone my skills with English and writing. If my books eventually did find some stardom or attention, I would love to make my passion my career, but paying the bills is my first priority right now. In college, I’m going to be majoring in Journalism, specifically with a focus on advertising. I hope to be able to put my skills to the test while also making a buck or two.”

McKee said that he draws much of his inspirations from the pastimes that he and his friends engage in and that his parents have helped to foster his creativity through encouragement and support.

“My friends and I have been fans of tabletop roleplaying games for a while now, most notably Dungeons and Dragons,” McKee said. “This love for world-building and watching a cast of characters play around in a world that I created is extremely rewarding, and often is the main thing that drives me to continue writing when I hit a wall. My family never pressured me too hard to grow up, so my love for magic and fantasy has remained as strong as ever.”

Sophomore Ann Vettikkal, a self-published author, said her initial push to become a writer came from back in elementary school. One of her teachers noticed her abilities at an early age and gave Vettikkal the courage to continue on the path of writing.

“My second-grade teacher, Mrs. Droder, inspired me to write because she was the first one to believe in my writing and me as a writer,” Vettikkal said. “She encouraged me to continue writing beyond the assignments we were given in class. Writing, in general, has definitely shaped who I am as a person because it gives you the ability to observe yourself and your thoughts.”

Although not everyone may be a writer, McKee still thinks that everyone should have a chance to make their voices and passions heard, no matter who they are.

“I urge everyone: if you have a story to tell, don’t be afraid to tell it,” McKee said. “Fictional or not, there is a space for every voice in this massive world that we live in.”

Photo by Jake Sapp.