Jamilah Williams: PieFace Writer Introduction
By J. Faith Malicdem // Dec. 20, 2019
Jamilah is one of my closest and truest friends, and it truly baffles to me to think that we met at a two-week-long summer enrichment program in 2017. The stars aligned perfectly, and fate *thankfully* brought us to cross one another's paths. Her talents incessantly astound me, and her heart never fails to reinstate my faith in humanity. In fact, she stands today as the very first PieFace contributor (you can find her very first piece here)! Ladies and gents, I present to you, the cream of the crop in this world. Meet Jamilah :')
What drew you to writing?
I have liked to write ever since I was a kid. Mostly, I liked to write because it gave me the ability to vocalize a lot of the stuff that no one around me wanted to talk about. I was always curious and I found out that not everyone wanted to discuss what the meaning of life is or why something is the way it is. Through writing, I was given an outlet where I could dissect and explore different topics and nuances within myself. I also love to read and analyze literature and found that writing was a great way to do that!
What do you typically write about? Do you have a specific style of writing? A specific format?
I typically write brain dumps, personal reflections about myself and things happening around me. When doing this, I always add elements of spirituality (as it changes) and politics as well. I wouldn’t say I have a particular style of writing. It varies, depending on what I’m writing about that day. That being said, I have grown to have an appreciation for academic writing, especially in writing about novels and poetry.
Do you have any authors/journalists/poets/critics/photographers of any kind who you look up to? Have they heavily influenced your work? In what way? I can’t name any off the top of my head, but oddly enough, poets influence my writing quite a bit. Reading poetry encourages me to be more self-reflective and to look for meaning in the little things. A constant inspiration to me are free-verse poets. I frequently struggle with trying to force a certain writing style or format, in a way that often disrupts my flow and creativity. The way that they write with no rules and no set expectations is very liberating and gives me the confidence I need to do the same.
Do you see a future for yourself in writing? If so, in what way(s)? If not, what are your general life aspirations?
While I see myself being involved in writing, I don’t personally see myself as a writer in the future. When I graduate college, I hope to become an English teacher, primarily for adolescents (middle school age). Like my teachers before me, I want to inspire and help others discover their love of writing. At such a delicate time in their life, I would love to give my students the tools they need to express themselves intellectually, creatively, and emotionally.
Which tends to take reign in your writing/photography: your brain or your heart?
With my personal writing, I tend to write mostly from the heart, delving into the many emotions or thoughts that I have about a particular topic. This, to me, is easier for me since I’m naturally very emotional and have a knack for overthinking everything. Even with analytical essays, there is an element of #deep thinking that I find so fun and entertaining to write about, even if I need to write in a more professional tone.
How are your creative works set apart from others?
My experiences are probably the biggest thing that sets me apart. All of the things that I’ve gone through has shaped me and my way of thinking so everything I write about is coming from a completely different perspective as the next one. That being said, as far as writing style goes, I’m not quite sure what makes me different from other fellow brain-dumpers out there.
What do you hope to contribute to Pie Face?
One of the best things about writing is the discussion! I hope to encourage and spark conversation with the other Pie Face writers and those that read our posts, hearing about their own personal experiences and opinions. I also to use this as a safe space to be not only be vulnerable, but to grow my confidence in writing more personal works.