Please join the English department in congratulating international student Diana Romanovskaya for winning the Gold Regional Scholastic Writing Award for her works titled, “The Reality of a Writer’s Mind”, “Death as Salvation”, and “The Ink”. Some other authors who have received Gold Scholastic Writing Awards are Stephen King, Truman Capote, Joyce Carol Oates, and Sylvia Plath.
Diana is a 7-day boarding senior from Moscow, Russia. She’s been interested in writing ever since she began learning English.
“In Russia, we learn a lot of poetry,” she said. “We memorize and recite it, but it’s mostly to sound smarter. I was never really interested in it then. In English, I can understand more what I’m saying, it’s not just a blur of sounds like in Russian.”
Diana writes with what she calls a flow of consciousness style. “I like poetry because there aren’t specific rules I have to follow. With free-writing, I can just go on forever, and whatever I’m feeling, that’s where it’s going.”
Diana’s pride in her Gold Scholastic Award is heightened by the fact that she is writing in English, which is not her first language. “It feels really good because not many people have achieved something like this,” she said.
Diana gets her inspiration from many different sources. Her poem, “The Reality of a Writer’s Mind,” gets its inspiration from NOT having inspiration. “Mrs. Ewing hadn’t given us a topic,” she said. “The whole class was confused about what to write about. So I wrote about that confusion.”
“‘Death as Salvation’ is a depressing one,” she continued. “I’m not a sad person at all, but I know people who are, and I took inspiration from that. And ‘The Ink’ is about my love of writing. It’s about finding salvation in writing. When I’m sad, I write. When I’m happy, I write. I just love writing.”
Diana’s parents were happily surprised by her win. “My dad was really impressed,” she said. “He said, ‘this shows that you aren’t just living in America, you’re blending in with the culture. You’re becoming an American, and you’re becoming respected by society and being accepted.’ It felt really good when he said that.”
Diana is attending Embry-Riddle Aeronautical College in the fall, and she’s majoring in aeronautics. Her goal is to become a commercial pilot in the United States since women can’t be pilots in Russia. And she’s definitely going to keep writing.
“Mrs. Ewing told me about a poet who writes and flies at the same time,” Diana said. “That’s been a great inspiration. I don’t want to write as a career, just a hobby, but if I could combine writing and flying, I would love to do it. That would be wonderful.”