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Kiki Sykes

Honorable mention in the 2016 Nick Adams Short Story Contest

Read the story: On Dying and Bereavement

  • Kiki Sykes

    Kiki Sykes

    Senior at St. Olaf College
  • Double major in English and religion
  • Hometown: Mission Hills, KS

Q. What sparked your interest in writing, and how did you get started writing fiction?

Ever since elementary school, I have had a special place in my heart for the practice of writing. My first grade teacher Mrs. Lewis was the first person to spark this passion of mine. She helped me draft my first fiction stories, poems, and autobiographies to document the riveting first six years of my life. I soon found that words flowed quite naturally from my head to the paper. Over the years, I have learned to cherish this capacity of mine and to sharpen it through daily journal writing and English courses. Since coming to college, I have continued to revel in the power of language and come alive from the craft of story telling through the written word. Mostly on a whim, I signed up for my very first fiction class this past fall and found myself delightfully surprised at how much I enjoyed dabbling in this genre.

Q. How have you developed your writing while you’ve been at St. Olaf?

At St. Olaf, I have had significant exposure to the practice of writing, and I have come to genuinely love this discipline. Though I was a staff writer for our school newspaper for two semesters, most of my exploration of writing has come from my academic courses and in particular, my Religion major. That being said, I took my first creative writing courses this past fall and realized how much I love this style of free writing. I hope that I can continue immersing myself in creative writing after college.