Macon State College MVPs is a web feature that profiles notable students, alumni, faculty and staff.
Full name: Kara Bright Kilgore
City of residence: Macon
Family: Mother, Elaine Kilgore; father, Al Kilgore (both avid readers); grandmother, Sara Rowell; and brother, Colin Kilgore.
Current Employment: Full-time student.
Degree Objective: Bachelor of science in communications.
Class Rank: Senior
Macon State Activities: Content editor for and regular contributor to The Fall Line Review, Macon State College's art and literary journal.
Career Goals: “I'd like to write fiction that is not just published, but published by Mac-Adam Cage, a publishing house that focuses more on content and craft and less on trends and hype. I'd also like to teach college-level classes. I was fortunate enough to learn from authors that I idolize. These authors were published by Mac-Adam Cage. It's no accident that these authors continue to teach even when, financially speaking, they don't have to. The best thing that I can do for myself is to observe this pattern, and then follow it.”
She chose Macon State College because … “I know several successful people who graduated from the College. I chose to stay at Macon State because I noticed the personalized attention that benefited most students here. I quit my job, terminated the lease on my apartment and changed my major to communications. I knew that I could tackle it as a full-time student. The faculty is always willing to help, so I saw no need to hesitate. So far, I've been right.”
The one thing that surprised her about Macon State was … “The College is dedicated to each student. I know that sounds routine and ever so politically correct, but even I'll admit it: Some clichés are true. The College truly wants every student to have the necessary tools for success. Part of that comes with availability. Professors go out of their way just to make themselves available for any student who may need help.”
Her favorite professor in spring semester 2008 is … “Dr. Kevin Cantwell (English professor). I've taken his preliminary creative writing class and this semester I'm taking a more advanced creative writing class. He's not only a published author, but an inspiring instructor. He knows the weight of words, therefore he knows how to help students discern the right word at the right time for the right piece. He takes the adage of ‘Show, don't tell’ seriously in that he shows a lot of examples so students can assimilate creative writing either by hearing rhythm in prose or feeling the impact of a particular phrase or concept. I think his teaching style is especially important for me because I rarely learn anything from someone who simply tells me what to learn.”
Her favorite place to study is … “I enjoy holing up in the library like some sort of refugee.”
One thing people don't know about her is … “The most common thing people usually don't know about me is my age. I'm not overly conscious of it but if someone thinks that I'm younger than I really am, depending on my mood, I may or may not correct them.”
Her friends make fun of her because … “I'm germ-a phobic, and seek solace in commercial products with the power to sanitize. There are at least two bottles of hand sanitizer in my car.”
The one person she’d most like to meet is … “Raymond Chandler. I'm reading his novels now. His dialogue was so sharp and intuitive. If he were alive and I could speak to him, I'd thank him for General Sternwood's line when he was describing one of his daughters: "Carmen is a child who likes to pull the wings off flies." It's only one line with 12 words, but it's brutally accurate. I want my own writing to have that kind of clarity.”
Five years from now she sees herself … “I want to be writing, editing and teaching.”