Growing up, I split my time between Jackson and Collinsville, which is a rural, small town outside of Meridian. Juxtaposing a comparatively big city like Jackson with Collinsville was interesting. I enjoyed both, and found pros and cons to each. I recently finished undergrad at Marymount Manhattan College in New York City, where I have been living for three years. I came home around March for quarantine but will be going back to NYC in mid-September.
I became involved with the Jackson Free Press after a friend put me in contact with Associate Publisher Kimberly Griffin, who introduced me to then-Managing Editor Amber Helsel. Over Christmas break in December 2018, I was able to work in the JFP office—writing and creating short video content.
Right now, for the JFP, I get to write pieces on specific people, which I love because I'm passionate about connecting with people. So having a reason to talk with someone, hear about their life and then communicate that with more people through the paper is really awesome. All stories I write are special for me in one way or another.
A big passion of mine is making short films, which encompasses writing, directing and editing—and I love every step. The best part about making a movie, for me, is bringing a group of creative people together to work toward bringing a vision to life. At the end, the finished product is something I'm very proud of because it's a culmination of everyone's hard work.
I also love to read. I've been trying to read novels in the modern roster of American classics, and I thought it would be perfect to read Donna Tartt while I'm home and quarantining because she's from Mississippi. So I've recently read all of her novels, and I'd definitely recommend "The Goldfinch." Her narrative prose is awe-inspiring.
I was voted "class clown" in high school. Looking back, I was both proud and a little embarrassed. Now, moving into adulthood, I realize that one of my greatest strengths is my ability to break the ice, so to speak, with humor. Making people open up and feel comfortable is something very important to writing, making movies or really any creative endeavor. That's been one of my favorite things about growing up—that something I used to not appreciate about myself is now one of my favorite qualities.