Featured Artist: McKayla Freeman

The "Featured Artist" blog series showcases the writers and artists from the second issue of GirlSense & NonSense Magazine. The second issue is available now! Subscribe for free here.

Who are you? Who am I? I’m not really even sure I know the answer to that. I’m McKayla Freeman, and I’m sixteen. I’m in band at my high school, and I play clarinet. I also play piano avidly, and if I could, I would spend all day in my piano room working on a song. I write quite a lot, and I’ve done so for so long I can barely remember the first day I picked up a notebook and wrote.

List three things you’re loving right now. As far as books go, I’ve been loving and will probably never stop loving the classics. My favorite books are the original Sherlock Holmes series, especially The Return of Sherlock Holmes. Another thing I’m loving right now is sappy Hallmark Christmas movies – it’s finally that time of year again! For a third thing, I’m really loving a piano book that I’ve been playing out of that turns Disney songs into classical piano arrangements.

What did you submit for the November issue? I submitted a piece called Pirates, which was just some random prose I wrote one day. It’s about authors, and the true nature of writing. It’s kind of deep, and I guess it says a lot about why I write, and why I want to write. I submitted it because my creative writing teacher told me that it wasn’t half bad, and that I should submit it. I decided that it couldn’t hurt to try.

What inspired you to write/create your submission piece? I feel like sometimes people who aren’t writers don’t always understand the beauty and purpose behind good writing. I wanted to explain, somehow, just how much the written word means to me, and to everyone else like me.

Tell us about yourself as an artist. I suppose I would call myself an artist. I think anyone can really be an artist, as long as they do something that’s beautiful to them. I’m an author, and a musician. Music and writing really have a lot in common, because all you’re doing is conveying some meaning that you wouldn’t normally be able to express. I guess the first true piece of art I ever created was a short story that I actually talk about in the piece I submitted to the magazine. It was crazy, and weird, but from that moment I knew I would continue to write for the rest of my life.


Why are you an artist? I want people to know about the things I know. I feel some kind of burning need deep down in my stomach to share the things I think about. I like to think maybe I have a message that no one else in the world has ever had before, and that I could share it in a way that will go down in some kind of history. I don’t really want to be famous, or even recognized. I just want to have someone read something I’ve written and understand it, and maybe even change them, just a little.

Respond to the following prompt: “There is a girl sitting in a chair in the back of a room. Hair tightly curled and smearing pink gloss across her lips, she knows things.” Let’s forget the stereotypes. Pretty girls? They aren’t always empty on the inside. Just because they care about their image doesn’t mean there isn’t anything else inside that perfectly styled head of theirs. This girl, she knows. More than you do. She smears pink gloss across her lips, so the lies that come out of her mouth will be sticky, and beautiful, and appealing to the dull – minded. She curls her hair just like the way she weaves her charm around her helpless victims; tightly, and effortlessly. Her bright eyes hide a dark soul, but it wasn’t created that way. No, her environment has hardened it, one snide comment at a time. Darkness feeds on light and the evil around her devoured every bit of light she had left. She knows this. Perhaps that means that somewhere, there’s still an ember, waiting to spark a fire. There is a girl sitting in the back of a room. Hair tightly curled and smearing pink gloss across her lips, she knows things.

To read McKayla's inspired essay, "Pirates", subscribe to GirlSense and NonSense Magazine and we'll send you copy. No fees; it's all free.