One of the first universal tips given to aspiring young writers is to “write what you know.” The creative process flows much smoother when tackling a topic in which you have existing experience to provide spark and insight. Such is the case for Thomas More College senior Samantha Smith, who recently published her novella, Trapped in the Corner of a Round Room. The story follows a young girl’s trip to the psychiatric ward during a schizophrenic episode.
Samantha’s interactions with a friend who battles schizophrenia provided the inspiration for her novella. These interactions allowed her to paint a vivid picture of the disorder in Trapped in the Corner of a Round Room. She explained, “If I tell the story about people with schizophrenia, it opens a pathway to help others understand the disorder and find ways to help.”
Samantha identifies herself as a “discovery writer,” most effective when she can close the door and curtains of her room and put pen to paper. She comes back to her stories later to make revisions and edits, once her creative juices have subsided. Samantha’s preferred medium is notebook paper–she’s filled up 12 notebooks just in the last three months.
This particular novella was part of an assignment for Dr. Rex B. Easley’s Creative Writing class in spring 2014. Thomas More College’s English department has played an integral part in Samantha’s development as a writer. She explained that Dr. Sara Scheyer-Farmer encouraged her in this area. Dr. Easley and Dr. Sherry Stanforth helped her edit and seek publishers for Trapped in the Corner of a Round Room.
Moving forward, Samantha plans to market the book through classmates, friends, and family, boosting the novella’s online reviews and eventually becoming available in stores along the way. As for future endeavors, Samantha is considering graduate school after TMC, as well as picking up a part-time position as an English tutor for local elementary school students. Eventually, she would like to be a full-time writer and editor for her hometown newspaper, The Gallatin County News.
Trapped in the Corner of a Round Room was published on November 16, 2014 through the Creative Space Independent Publisher Platform.
Trapped in the Corner of a Round Room is currently available on Amazon, click here to purchase.