Brenda Reavis

Major(s), Concentration(s): Psychology
Minor(s): Criminal Justice Studies
Year at Elon: Sophomore

1. Other than class assignments, what kinds of things do you write or have you written?
I was in a creative writing class recently which inspired me to start writing again. From that, I've written poetry, creative non-fiction, fiction, and a novel.

2. What piece of writing are you most proud of?
A novel that I managed to finish in the days leading up to the beginning of Fall Semester of my Sophomore year at Elon. I've never been so proud of myself or anything I've ever done as I am of that book.

3. Where is your favorite place to write?
At home, I love to sit and write at the kitchen table when it's quiet and all I can hear are the birds chirping outside of the window and the sunlight streams right over my shoulders. At Elon, I live in a dorm that has a nook much like a bay window. I like to sit there to think and write.

4. Do you have any interesting quirks and/or routines you follow when writing or when you are preparing to write? What are they?
There has to be silence when I'm starting. I like a cup of coffee or tea nearby and I can't write creatively without instrumental and/or classical music playing.

5. Who is your favorite writer? Why?
I hate to sound cliche, but Shakespeare because his words are never easy to understand. He always gave his work dimensions that seem somewhat understandable one day and then, when looking at them in an entirely different light reveal something deeper and far more complex than anyone could have imagined. The amazing way he strung words together is like music you can see.

6. What was the best writing experience of your life?
Since I was in elementary school I've been writing stories. My problem was an inability to finish any of them. For the first time in my life, I managed to start and finish a novel that I planned for months in my head and agonized over during the months of actual writing. Being able to type "The End" was the best experience of my entire writing career so far.

7. What would you most like to improve about your writing?

I want to give my writing a little bit of time to breathe and take in its surroundings. Since I mainly write fiction, scenery, setting, and detail is crucial to creating a story that people can get lost in. Unfortunately, I tend to rush through things like that because I've got an idea in mind. I would like to be able to give each page the time and dedication it deserves.

8. What advice do you have for other Elon writers?
Find what works for you. Don't try to force yourself into a genre because it's what's popular right now. Trust yourself and your creativity. It's a gift to be shared, not wasted. Don't stop. It might get hard and you might second guess yourself, but you'll never know pride quite like looking at a finished piece of work.