Jefferys honored as finalist for her short story “Waiting in Vain”

Story was one of 39 finalists out of 700 submissions

Ally Beck, Staff Reporter

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Aspiring author Clavaria Jefferys takes pride in her short story “Waiting In Vain” as she makes it into the finals of the Raleigh Fine Arts contest (RFA) short story contest.

The contest is open to sophomores, juniors and seniors in Wake County. More than $1,500 is awarded to winning stories. Jefferys’ story was one of 39 finalists out of over 700 entries.

Jefferys was motivated to make a difference with her writing.

“I saw stories that didn’t represent me, so I wanted to make a change.”

Inspiration comes in many ways. To Jefferys it’s things and people.

“I was listening to a Bob Marley song, and I developed a character off of that song.”

She hopes that readers learn a lesson from her story. She hopes it will open reader’s eyes.

“Not everyone is who they seem to be,” Jefferys said.

Jefferys has big hopes for furthering her career as a writer.

“Hopefully I’ll become a world renowned author and go on book tours,” Jefferys said.

Authors like Angie Thomas and Walter Dean Myers inspire most of Jefferys’ work.

“They’re just these powerful authors that put out a message that really means something to me,” Jefferys said.

Whereas other writers may have struggled to come up with ideas or inspirations for their writing, Jefferys faced a slightly different challenge.

“Making it short enough to fit in the submission,” Jefferys said.

Not only have famous authors and musicians inspired her writing, but so have family members, encouraging her to do her best.

“Mainly my mom because she always pushed me to be more creative in the person that I am,” Jefferys said.

She thinks it’s “pretty cool” to be recognized as one of the few RFA short story finalists.

The famous American writer William Faulkner once said a writer, “must use as one of his tools the environment which he knows.” For

Jefferys that means including in her works, “different things that impacted my personal life.”

Not only does Jefferys have a love of writing, she also loves to read as well.

“My favorite novel would have to be ‘The Hate You Give’ because it’s a story that could actually happen, and it just made a lot of sense,” Jefferys said.

Jefferys has an inspiring piece of advice for aspiring writers.

Jefferys said, “The advice I would give to other aspiring writers would be always stay true to yourself. Don’t ever change your narrative to fit someone else’s life.”

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