Will Consagra, a fourth-year applied mathematics student, will be reading a few of his creative writing samples at the upcoming Undergraduate/Faculty Reading Series at 5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, in the Campus Center Reading Room. The Brockport, N.Y., native has been involved in creative writing for many years and will be sharing comfort-themed pieces at the event. Consagra is also a math and physics tutor for the Academic Support Center on campus and a calculus teaching assistant.
Q: What brought you to RIT?
A: Being from the area I knew the reputation RIT has for STEM majors. I loved that I could stay close to home and still receive a great education.
Q: Why did you decide to study applied mathematics?
A: I have a very analytical mind, which certainly has its disadvantages, but it’s where I think my inclination toward math comes from.
Q: What has been one of your favorite experiences at RIT?
A: Walking the trails behind the campus during that time of spring when the land back there has finally dried after spending the preceding months as a marshy mosquito sanctuary.
Q: How did you get involved in creative writing?
A: I have enjoyed creative writing since I was young. I wrote on and off until I went to college when I sort of abandoned it for a few years. I finally started again when I took a course entitled “Writing the Self and Others” with professor Michael Sarnowski, who came highly recommended. I rediscovered how much I enjoyed writing, if for nothing else than its immense therapeutic value.
Q: What type of things do you enjoy writing?
A: I like to write memoirs and short stories mainly. I enjoy the process of trying to get something out on paper that I haven’t written before in one form or another, exploring new ideas and revisiting older ones with a different perspective.
Q: What is the creative writing event on Nov. 21?
A: It is the Undergraduate/Faculty Reading Series where a professor from the English department and an undergraduate, which will be my part in the event, share samples of their work.
Q: What will you be sharing at the event?
A: I will be reading a few samples of my most recent work, including a few sections from a short collection of vignettes that focus on the theme of comfort.
Q: What advice would you have for someone who wants to get involved with creative writing?
A: Write honestly. I think my best writing comes out when I am not concerned with self-editing or trying to fit it nicely within the contexts of a predetermined theme. Let your writing evolve its own meaning, which will happen if you remain honest in your depiction of whatever situation you are exploring.
Q: What are your plans for after graduation?
A: I’m not entirely sure. I still have another year and a half left at RIT to finish getting my master’s degree in applied and computational mathematics. I might pursue a Ph.D. after that if I still have the energy.