An Interview with Writer Sasha Rockwell

Staff members interview writers from the Student Faculty Reading Series.

What inspired your piece?

My post-apocalyptic short story “Mantis Machine” was inspired from several interests. I really enjoy writing stories about female protagonists, mainly children and teenagers because they have great imaginations, and it offers great content to write about, like how they navigate the world. I came up with the idea of the mechanical praying mantis from my interest in steampunk. I thought taking something ordinary like a bug and making it strange, terrifying, and otherworldly would make a really interesting story. I also think that understanding the limitations of technology is very relevant to today. At what point do we go too far, and when will technology be our demise or save us? It’s very fascinating and a topic I may visit in future writing.

What are you reading right now?

Right now I’m reading Fireborne by Rosaria Munda. It takes place after a revolution and Annie and Lee are dragon riders, and come from very different places, although they share similar traumatic experiences. Lee is from an aristocratic family who was murdered, and Annie is from a lowborn family who was executed. There’s romantic tension between them, so I’m excited to see what their fates are, and who they prove to be loyal to.

What was the reading experience like?

The Student Faculty Reading Series was a wonderful experience. It was my first time reading a significant portion of my writing in front of a large audience. I felt nervous, and naturally I didn’t think that my writing was good enough to be shared. I think it’s a big hurdle that a lot of writers face. We’re always our worst critics. It gave me a lot of confidence knowing that people enjoyed listening to my story. I thought that the other writers who read at the event did a wonderful job, and I’m very glad that I had the opportunity to read with so many talented students and faculty.

Sasha Rockwell is a junior and is studying English with a writing concentration. She is a writer at heart, and deeply fascinated in living the lives of characters from wonderful lands. She loves fantasy the most, and strong willed female protagonists with passionate and fiery souls. She loves to read and write in her free time with a good cup of tea at her side. She will not refuse to read any book with dogs, and has a love for animals, even the fantastical ones like dragons. She is also influenced by the works of Studio Ghibli, and the beautiful stories told by Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata. She hopes to write her own novels in the future, and inspire others.

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