Category Archives: imanenglishmajor

Hello, I am Kekai Gonsalves

I am an ever growing poem. I am a knot of stubborn hair. I am a daughter of a rock in the ocean. I am an English major.

Kekai Gonsalves

Kaua’i, Hawai’i

My eyes are dark as the shadows of reef under the deep ocean. My thin collarbones extend as hands do when they serve. My skin has an inherited tan with a golden tint from the sun’s presence of day. My lips are left bronzed by humid air. My hair is a dark brown and to care for it, I bend my neck forward for my chocolate curls to follow. I twirl it between my hands eight times, place it at the top of my head, spiral the ringlets, and tuck the strands’ ends into the ring of brunette hair. Attributes do not define me, yet the messy, relaxed bun I form is a depiction of my culture and an image I live to parallel. I form my bun as natives pound and shape a local plant into a paste. It is shaped as I balance on my bicycle, tires colliding with my beaten path home. It is shaped as I contend passionately for a ball on a youthful soccer field of grass, sweat, and bruise. It is shaped as I hold a pencil between my pressed lips and smooth teeth in haste of writing an essay. It is shaped as I park my cherry pick up at the beach. It is shaped as I feel leather binding in my palms and embrace scripture. The bun enables me to do many things. Without hair flowing freely, I am able to execute any labor or toil. I hope to always be able to hold myself together and fulfill a duty. The best way to put my shoulder to the wheel is to put my hair in a knot at the top of my head first. I seek to be beautiful, hold my head high, and hold my bun higher.

One of my favorite books is The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe.


Amanda Breck

I’m a military brat, a reader, a writer, a golfer, and I’m an English major.

Breck, Amanda

These are a few of my favorite things.

I haven’t been in the English program for very long, but so far I’ve loved every minute of it. I’ve been reading and writing since before I can remember. My mom occasionally pulls out stories I wrote in elementary school to embarrass me with. I always carry a little notebook, and my hands are always covered in ink from how much I write. I started a blog in 2010 to share my short stories, but I quickly moved into the world of book blogging. I fell in love with reading young adult literature, and post reviews whenever I have time. If you’re looking for a great YA book to read, I hope you’ll check out my blog, Amanda’s Writings.

One of my favorite books is Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones.

Hi, I’m Rachel Knecht.

I’m a casual fashionista, a dessert-lover, a passionate road-tripper, and a comedy enthusiast. And I’m an English major.

Knecht, Rachel

Rachel thinking about life.

I’m an indecisive student, which I think actually opens up a world of possibilities. English has always seemed right, as I love words, reading, talking, writing, texting, emailing, song lyrics, smart dialogue in movies, TV, plays, etc., and good conversation and debate (basically any variation and usage of language). I’m still discovering what I’m most passionate about, but the way human nature is so vulnerably portrayed in writing gets me every time; I can’t help but get chills when words teach me, or reveal something about me and others.


Ashley Rowe

I’m a Southern Utahan, an animal and people lover, a swimmer and a historical fiction reader. And I’m an English Teaching major.

Ashley Rowe

Life’s good, isn’t it?

I can’t believe that my years as an undergraduate at BYU are almost over, but I’ve loved each second of it! I have grown to love English more than I ever thought possible, and to be able to have the experience of teaching it to students is more amazing that I ever imagined! After I leave, I’m going to still actively seek out opportunities for book groups, creative writing outlets, and other events and meetings having to do with literature and English. Literature is a huge part of my life, and if I didn’t have it, I don’t know where I would be!

One of my favorite books is Anne of Green Gables.




Ben Grange

I’m a writer, an amateur composer, a husband and father, and I’m an English Major.

Ben Grange

Me and my wife on the Provo River trail.

I decided to be an English major to help my writing. I love to write young adult contemporary fiction and fantasy. As an English major, I’ve explored many other avenues of writing, and I’ve come across many inspirational texts that have generated thousands of ideas in my mind. As a creative person, completing a major which is highly analytic has molded my brain to be a critic of my own work. This analytical mind set has transferred to multiple facets of my life, some of which include my career path, my music composition, my writing, my artwork, and my family. It’s made me a rounder individual, more dimensional, and more intellectual.

I’ve been an English major for the last two years. My career path changed from “”I don’t know what I want to do,”” to “”I want to go into children’s and young adult book publishing”” in that time. Through opportunities opened to me through the school, I’ve done four internships in the publishing world, which has prepared me to go on after graduation and get a job in a competitive field. Becoming an English Major was the best thing I could have done, and I’m so glad I did it.

One of my favorite books is Harry Potter.




Carli Cramer

I’m a writer, a Cheesehead, a Hooiser, a bookworm, a swimmer, and a Disney lover. And I’m an English major.

Carli Cramer

Me in my natural habitat.

I remember the first author that enchanted me with her words: Gail Carson Levine. She wrote dashing tales of princesses and princes and magic and her words took me to new lands and times, all while I was sitting in my elementary school library. Ever since then, I have rarely gone a day without a book. I love them. Every day I am influenced by the power of what is literally just ink on pages. And that is amazing.

One of my favorite books is Pride and Prejudice.





Hi, I’m Tesia Tsai

I’m a creative writer, a Tumblr addict, and a student editor. And I’m an English major.

Tesia Tsai

Me at Disneyland (where I always want to be)

I’m one of the lucky few who never reconsidered her major through college. Ever since my senior year of high school, I’ve known that English is the major for me. Some cliché reasons: I love to read and I love to write. Always have. Always will. Funny fact is that English isn’t even my first language. But I guess my English tutoring in kindergarten did the trick, because I’ve grown to love the language more than my first.

Some things about me that aren’t English related… I was born in California, but I’ve lived in Utah now for more than half my life. I love traveling, though I wish I could afford to so more often. (Alas, the cons of being a college student.) I’ve been lucky enough to visit London, New York, Paris, and Taiwan (which, contrary to popular misunderstanding, is not the same as Thailand). I speak Mandarin, English, and some French. When I’m not doing homework or studying for exams, I’m usually obsessing over my favorite things on Tumblr. (If you have a Tumblr account, you’ll understand.) I would love to become a published author someday, so I spend a lot of time daydreaming about stories and little time actually writing them down. I also love watching movies and visiting the theater whenever I can. 🙂


One of my favorite books is Marissa Meyer’s Cinder.

Conor Hilton

I’m a pop culture aficionado, an aspiring intellectual, politics junkie, and a liberal. And I’m an English major.

Conor Hilton

Me chillin’ with Brother Brigham in the Capitol

I love books (surprise!). I have grown to love analyzing anything that can be ‘read’ (using a liberal definition, of course, of ‘read’ to include films, music, works of art, scripture, Church lessons and talks) and can irritate my friends that prefer to read less closely with my analysis and critique. I read voraciously and enjoy finding connections between my various interests (politics, Mormonism, pop culture, literature, etc.).

I have a mass storage of pop culture trivia (what most would consider useless, although if I’m ever on a game show I’ll be a formidable opponent, or if you need to phone a friend when you’re on a game show, I could help you out). My spectrum of interests can be harmonized in English, particularly with adaptation studies (where I may focus for graduate studies). In addition to reading, I thoroughly enjoy writing. I dabble in poetry (I play bongos, so it tends to be beatnik or slam-esque), wrote a draft of a novel, have oodles of partially complete stories, some satire and journalism (for the Student Review, an independent student-run publication in Provo), and an almost weekly blog about Mormon theology/culture/speculation. To rework a phrase from Descartes, I read therefore I think therefore I write therefore I am.

One of my favorite books is Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities.

Blog: “Mini Manifestos


Hello, Lauren Redding

I am a Disney Fanatic, fairy tale scholar, ballet dancer, Ravenclaw, and general obsessive fangirl. And, an English Major.

Lauren Redding

Fairy tales and ballet! A winning combination!

I read like, well, like an English Major. As in A LOT. I’m frequently teased for my reading face, it’s “a signpost for all to read” (Shannon Hale’s Razo? Anybody?) I laugh, cry, snort, roll my eyes, and, more often than not, talk to the characters or the author while reading, telling them exactly what I think of their behavior. I then type it all up in very long Goodreads reviews. [I once went over the 20,000 character limit for a review and had to go back and cut unnecessary punctuation]

My love for grammar is the logical lovechild of my love of language and my love of the preciseness found in math. However, I am a huge proponent of incorrect grammar as a stylistic tool.

I am as much an expert on fairy tales as an eighteen year old person can be an expert on anything, and I love to argue about them, especially Disney versions and/or gender politics. I love the fantasy of the tales, the timelessness, the connection with ballet culture, the history, the diversity, the repetition, and the way that we can track written versions of stories to learn things about the societies in which they were written and crafted. I especially love how loosely written they are, leaving room for interpretation and imagination, which leads to such wonderful retellings from Robin McKinley, Gail Carson Levine, and Cameron Dokey.

My favorite author is L.M. Montgomery (Anne of Green Gables), and my obsessive reading of historical fiction when I was a little girl (as well as a lifetime of ballet classes) has embedded in me a curtsey impulse that nothing in 21st century society has succeeded in squelching.

Any writing I do is usually either unpublished rants I pretend are blog posts, or in my daily journal.

One of my favorite books is Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine.

Hi, I’m Drew!

I’m a glitter fanatic, an East Coaster, a Nancy Drew devotee and an idealist. And I’m an English major.

Drew Rupard


I wasn’t named after Nancy Drew, but I wish I was. Her books — fine literature, in my opinion. As an English major, I love many books. I love most of all reading a new book and having to make a new little aesthetic space for each, whether it’s a Victorian rose garden for Tennyson’s Idylls of the King, or a room in a Saigon tea house for The Quiet American. I love languages and speak, to various extents, three: French, Japanese, and my personal favorite, ENGLISH! To me, words can be beautiful, miraculous, and above all, challenging. They are the code by which I know this world, and it is my lifelong pursuit to decipher them. Among my other opinions, I believe that green paintings are generally superior to non-green paintings, that the Dark Ages weren’t necessarily dark, and that everyone should carry a journal and write in it. Also in climbing on top of big stone structures.

One of my favorite books is The Quiet American by Graham Greene

Art blog:
Nancy Drew food blog: