English and Creative Writing
Submitted by Sophie
A world without the rich woven fabric of literature would be a world sapped of all colour; a world that offers no sense of escapism and a world whose problems goes unchallenged. My name is Sophie Brown and I want to live my life knowing that I will gift strangers around the earth, with the pleasure of words and an insight into someone else's never-ending imagination. Ever since I opened "Anne of Green Gables'' as a child and was sucked into the magic and adventure of Anne's world, I have always found my home in reading. And as I grew up, I soon realised that there would be no other subject that I would love to study than Creative Writing and English.
Taking English Literature these last two years has taught me not only to be analytical on different levels but has shown me the different layers of interpretation. It has also taught me to consider different critical approaches allowing me to look past the words of the story to see how the very pages of books are built up from the context of the past and the society we are living in today. One of my other A-levels, Classical Studies, has expanded my creative skills and has also given me the knowledge to look beyond our current time period. The works of Sophocles 'Antigone' has always been a source of inspiration for me. The ambiguous debate of Antigone's beliefs versus the Polis laws has pushed me to think about, what are normally, controversial thoughts. These ideas are now starting to reflect in my writing, as I transverse and challenge the dynamics and problems that aren't usually spoken about within our society, such as the complex arguments in feminism and race issues.
Besides taking my A Levels, I have also succeeded in the role as one of the Heads of School. The interaction I have had with the younger years and helping them pursue the ideas they have for the school has been an honour. So has been the responsibility to perform speeches and being a role model to the outside community. I have also been partaking in Gold Arts Award where I have co-created a children's book, about two cats called Maisy and Lulu. Aside from the essential project, I was given the chance to work with a primary school in creating their own short stories. The joy that was on their faces as they looked at their finished books and shared their work with others was incredibly moving.
What's more, I have also been a part of my school magazine as a contributing writer and have recently succeeded the role of the design and copy editor. The position has challenged me to take up a different form of expression and explore the way my writing can interact with society's current issues. Writing articles on topics, such as my personal outtake on feminism and the dangers of Trump's America, has made me realise and obtain a sense of pride when it comes to writing. A pride that is shown through the fact that last year our magazine achieved 'Highly Commended' for 'Best Cover' and 'Best Overall Edition' at 'The SHINE Awards' while being the only state school competing.
I have also competed in NaNoWriMo numerous of times and have successfully exceeded the word count of 50,000 words. And now, finally, my novel "The Forgotten" is starting to grow into a piece of literature that I can soon share with the world. Competing each year has really pushed me beyond my comfort zone of short stories and poetry. It has turned me into a more sophisticated writer who has learned to balance deadlines and expectations.
However, the main thing that has really opened up my eyes to my love for Creative Writing, was when I was given the chance to be published in an anthology alongside Michael Morpurgo. The opportunity of being published by an author that I loved to read has made me realise what a privilege it is to write. It is a privilege to be able to give words back to so many writers who have given me theirs. And this privilege has ignited the desire in me to write anything and everything for the rest of my life.