Q: Could you explain your SIP? What was your topic?
A: My SIP is a creative writing SIP that consists of 5 short stories all pertaining to black feminism and black womanhood. I did an extended preface so that I could do a critical analysis of Beyoncé’s Lemonade album.
Q: How did you decide on your topic? Why did you decide on it? What was your inspiration?
A: I knew I wanted to do a creative writing SIP, but all of the short story ideas I wanted to write came from my listening to the Lemonade album. Pretty much Beyoncé is the first part of the inspiration for why I chose this topic. The second inspiration was from my experience as a black woman and struggling with my mixed-race identity. Fiction allows me to make sense of my black female experience and my identity. So, I figured why not combine those two.
Q: What was your process like?
A: It went smoothly, for the most part. I worked on my SIP over the summer and had turn-ins every other week. Having them be every other week was nice because it gave me time to make up for the days I didn’t feel as inspired to write or couldn’t get in a groove. The only part of the process that was difficult for me was writing the extended preface. I had a hard time talking about myself as a scholar and referring to my own work in that manner. Shanna Salinas was my advisor and she really helped me through the process.
Q: How did the Symposium go for you?
A: I thought it went really well. I received a lot of positive feedback from my professors and fellow English SIP-ers.
Q: Did you achieve your end goal for your project?
A: Sort of. I wrote the pieces I felt were important and needed to be read. But I have a lot of fine-tuning and polishing of those pieces that I’m still working on. My end goal was reached in the sense that I received honors and was able to finish a longer piece of writing than I had ever done before, but I still have a little way to go before those long pieces are publishable.
Q: Do you have any advice for rising seniors who are starting the SIP process?
A: Focus on something you enjoy, as corny as that sounds. If you don’t love the work you’re doing you’re going to have a hard time staying motivated. I chose something I’m passionate about and it kept me going and excited to work.