• J. Faith Malicdem

Marques Taus: PieFace Writer Introduction

by J. Faith Malicdem // Nov. 8 2019

Piefaces! The team is ~expanding~, and our platform is ~transitioning~. It is my pleasure to introduce aspiring journalist Marques Taus! He is a current senior at my alma mater. Marques posted about an exciting, life-changing opportunity on his Instagram when I decided I’d reach out and see if he was open to joining the writing team. He sent me a very introspective writing sample over the summer in light of the kinds of work I tend to post on PieFace, and I was intrigued. I had to get this kid to contribute his talents to the column. And with that, I invited him to officially be a team member, sending over a series of questions so audiences could grasp a better gauge of who he is, what he does, and why he does.

What drew you to writing?

I’ve always been drawn to literature ever since I was little. Almost everyone on my Dad’s side is an English major. My grandfather attended Columbia University in the 50’s. I had a little journal from when I was around 9 years old that I would constantly write in (I suppose you could call it a diary).

What do you typically write about? Do you have a specific style of writing? A specific format?

I tend to write about anything that calls my attention: political issues, philosophical questions and questions I’m asked, sports like basketball and baseball. I typically like to research beforehand on every topic I have along with looking into the history of each topic. I also might write a few drafts before my final piece. Most of my pieces are broken down into a sort of research essay format with a few adjustments depending on the topic.

Do you have any authors/journalists/poets/writers of any kind who you look up to? Have they heavily influenced your work? In what way?

There are plenty of writers that I look up to including many in my own family! My grandfather worked for the Daily Variety for 3 years and is a renounced poet with many books filled with poems. I have my great aunt who is an Alumni of USC where she received a masters degree in Journalism. I have a mentor who worked for the LA Times for 22 years and currently works for the LA Jewish Journal. There are many people I look up to and receive countless amounts of help and guidance from. I’m truly grateful for the opportunities I’ve been given. The best piece of advice I can get and give to anyone interested in writing is to just write. You only get better at writing when you constantly write. Every single one of the people I mentioned gave me that same piece of advice and it has helped me tremendously.

Do you see a future for yourself in writing? If so, in what way(s)? If not, what are your general life aspirations?

I definitely, without a doubt, see a future for myself in writing. I’m at a point in my life where, regardless of the colleges that don’t accept me or the jobs I don’t get, I’m still going to continue to write. I always tell people that if I wanted a career for a pretty penny, I wouldn’t be doing journalism. My ideal future is to be writing for a sport or a political newsletter or blog of some sort with my closest friends by my side.

Which tends to take reign in your writing: your brain or your heart? (do you tend to write more with emotion or intellect?)

I like to put more emotion into my writing. There are different interests out there and maybe more people like to see a more logistical approach, but I think if you word a passage correctly, the reader can really feel the emotions in your writing. Knowing my writing made connections with someone on a certain level gives me a sense of satisfaction. I have a proud essay about border injustice, relating immigrant detention centers to Japanese internment camps and Jewish concentration camps. I showed this essay to my Dad and heard his voice start to break up and crack in emotion. To hear how my writing can connect with others males me truly proud of my abilities.

What sets your writing apart from others?

I’m not too sure how my writing is different from others YET. I haven’t met many people who enjoy writing. I’d say that my writing has a wide range of capabilities in the sense where I don’t really specialize in one area but can decently cover a spectrum of events. Basically, I’m not a one subject aficionado.

What do you hope to contribute to PieFace? (it could be anything from personal accounts of events in your life you find interesting, to political views, to emotional brain dumps, to personal research projects on whatever!

I want to contribute to the Pie Face column in any way I can, whether that’s editing, proofreading or writing my own piece! I’m very grateful to have a platform to show the world new perspectives and ideas. It’s an exciting feeling to actually be able to have people (besides my family) see my work!

Be sure to be on the lookout for Marques’ pieces!

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