Rooted in a love of reading at an early age, spending her time on the isles Borders Bookstore rather than Toys R Us, Zion Robinson is a graduate student, mother and lover of words.
“I remember writing my first piece in second grade,” says Zion. “I wrote this fiction story about my dogs Paris and T-Bone and I called it ‘Two Dogs on Muscadine Creek’. Even before then, my parents pushed me to be a writer.”
At 16, Zion graduated from high school and began taking classes at the University of West Georgia. A true testament to her undeniable determination and poise, she gave birth to her son on Thursday and was back in class on Monday.
Motherhood gave her the opportunity to view and write about the world from her now four year old son’s perspective and give him a rich introduction to language early on, often reading him the same books and works she reads herself for class.
“He always [her son] has the funniest questions,” she says. “I always answer the questions he asks me and I encourage him to ask questions. His first word was actually ‘book’.”
She earned her Bachelor’s degree at 20 and is currently working towards her masters degree in English at UWG. Her love of writing bloomed after taking Introduction to Creative Writing, where her professor, Dr. Fraser, pushed her to switch from a degree in Mass Communication to English. He brought her into English Education committee meetings, where she helped to plan events and explored the options of having an English degree beyond teaching.
“Dr. Fraser saw the potential that I had and took me in,” she says. “He let me sit in on English Education committee meetings and I was able to help plan an event for the staff. He really showed me how many options there are for English majors beyond just teaching.”
She finds herself writing about her family, a topic she says comes from going back to who made you who you are. She says this semester she has been working on a piece about relationships, with a list essay entailing the gifts offered to her while in dating someone, pushing herself to write about things she has been avoiding diving into.
“Whatever makes you uncomfortable you should write about,” she says. “Or the unimportant things you should write about. It should be uncomfortable to write about some things because discomfort is the best for growth.”
“Before this semester I thought I wanted to write a novel based on my life,” continues Zion. “Now I think I’d like to write a book of essays. I would love to have a career that is entirely dedicated to writing after I graduate.”