Kentucky Author Praises WKU Writing Students

Sunday afternoon WKU hosted it's 17th Annual Jim Wayne Miller Celebration of Writing event.

It was a day for celebrating a common passion -- writing.

"It's something that I definitely enjoy, and it's crazy that I can go to college and do that and get a degree when that's something that I enjoy doing in general," said competition winner, Maggie Woodward.

In Cherry Hall, people came together to hear the Kentucky-native author Silas House read from his upcoming novel Little Fire.

Ten students were honored as the dean announced them as finalists in the Jim Wayne Miller Fiction Writing Competition.

House spent time with them before the event.

"Talking about their work, advising them, making suggestions and ultimately picking three top winners, but all ten students had a great opportunity to interact one-on-one with a very good writer," said David Lee, the dean of Potter College.

House said he had never seen so much talent in a student competition before.

"It was great to hear a visitor of the campus, especially someone like Silas House, say that he's rarely encountered so many good student writers and one university. It's a great testimony for them, and it's a great testimony to our faculty," Lee said.

The winner wrote a short story about a family who went through Hurricane Katrina, and House praised the story for its character development.

"I was really flabbergasted. It was so nice. It was definitely reassuring that what I want to do with my life is what I should keep trying to do," Woodward said.

House also had advice for aspiring authors.

"My advice for aspiring writers would be to just not give up, to remain determined and be very patient because it takes forever to get published," he said.

Lee said it's always a full house at the celebration.

He also said Jim Wayne Miller -- who the event honors -- was one of the most important faculty members WKU ever had, and through this event he continues to teach despite passing away 17 years ago.


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