Warga walks hallowed halls

Warga+visited+Sycamore+and+talked+about+her+writing+process+and+her+new+book.+Her+first+published+book+is+titled+%22My+Heart+and+Other+Black+Holes.%22+The+book+is+set+to+release+Feb.+2015.+In+an+email+response%2C+Warga+said%2C+%22It+helped+me+remember+why+I+wanted+to+do+this+thing+in+the+first+place.%22

Warga visited Sycamore and talked about her writing process and her new book. Her first published book is titled “My Heart and Other Black Holes.” The book is set to release Feb. 2015. In an email response, Warga said, “It helped me remember why I wanted to do this thing in the first place.”

Brooke Landrum and Madeline Marsh

Returning to walk the halls of your old high school can be an experience that leaves an individual nostalgic and possibly a bit haunted. Graduates of SHS often return to visit with teachers and inspire current students with their accomplishments.

Class of 2006 graduate, Jasmine Warga has returned to SHS to share the stories of her success with current students. Since leaving SHS, Warga has graduated from Northwestern University and published a novel.

While she visited, she hosted an assembly for English classes about her novel and the process of becoming a distinguished author and writer. She also met with Sofia Feist’s classes individually to speak for a second time.

When asked about the inspiration for her debut novel Warga said that the emotions she experienced after the death of a close friend led to the writing of “My Heart and Other Black Holes.” While he did not kill himself like the characters in the book are contemplating, the book is dedicated to the said close friend.

Warga stressed finding your voice to potential authors. She said that good writers are good readers, and everything they read comes through when they write. Though one may admire another author, it is important to find a personal voice. A story does not have to be ‘original,’ just true. An author should write from their perspective. As Warga said, there is “nothing new under the sun.”

Another idea brought up was what Warga called “shiny new idea syndrome.” While writing, many new and seemingly wonderful ideas seem to appear. Do not follow these. Write them down and let them sit a couple of days. If anything still seems like a good idea, follow it.

When asked where she likes to write, Warga informed the students that as much as she would like to, she cannot write in a coffeehouse, with other writers, or anywhere other than a quiet office. To avoid distractions, Warga uses an Apple app which shuts down the internet for a specified period of time, allowing for increased productivity.

“I thought that she was a really good speaker. She seemed to know what she was talking about and she gave good advice,” said junior Emma Steward.

In regard to the writing process, Warga writes more voice and character driven. With limited plotting, the story unfolds. Warga holds that when a story is too structured, it is sometimes difficult not to give it away, resulting in an anticlimax.

Warga’s novel is entitled, ‘My heart and other black holes’. The novel focuses on suicide, love and physics and will be released February 10, 2015.