Ninth-grader Ashley Turner, who has been attending The Soulsville Charter School (TSCS) since 2017, has her eyes set on becoming a writer. So much so that she is actually now working on a book.

While she doesn’t want to divulge many secrets or details about the book, she does say, “The book is an insight into topics that occur in America like love, beauty standards, depression, and many more things. However, it’s through a teenager’s perspective kind of like a TED Talk if that makes sense. The idea of writing a book is something I’ve been thinking about for a minute. I just had to invest in myself, and having a good support system really helped in this process. Currently, I’m doing expanded research and making sure I have permission to source some information on a couple of chapters of the manuscript. As I finish that up I should be done with those couple of chapters in about two weeks.”

Ashley is also excited about a summer opportunity that may just help her with her book.

“I am going to participate in a young writer’s workshop with other teenagers that’s all about creative writing,” she says, “which something I’m very excited to be a part of at the moment. So a huge shout out to my English teacher, Ms. Samara Francisco, who I have talked to about my manuscript. After telling her my ideas she actually was the one who suggested I participate in the workshop, so thanks again for that Ms. Francisco.”

As if writing a book and participating in a writing workshop weren’t enough, Ashley is also involved in writing a screenplay, which came about during drama class at TSCS.

“The screenplay was particularly my favorite thing about drama class that I loved,” she says. “We worked in teams to come up with the name the “Deadly Cabin,” and a couple of people from the group decided we wanted to try to produce it in real-time. Sadly, however, we’ve been extremely busy with school and life, which caused the screenplay to not be our top priority right now. Maybe in the future, we will be able to produce “Deadly Cabin,” but as of right now there are other little projects that I’m working on that could potentially work out.”

Ultimately, Ashley hopes to attend college and then move right into the professional world.

“I want to attend a predominantly white institution (PWI) like Vanderbilt or Cornell for two years and then possibly transfer to a HBCU like Howard University for the rest of my college career,” she says. “Or maybe study abroad; I haven’t decided yet. As of now I want to obtain a business administration degree (MBA) and a bachelor’s in psychology. I have so many professions I could potentially pursue. So here are a few that have come to mind: CEO of a company, HR representative because I love to give out orders and I love working with people; a forensic psychologist because after binge-watching Criminal Minds that’s something that has sparked my interest; a psychiatrist because helping people is my specialty; and maybe even a screenwriter. The goal, in the end, is to have multiple sources of income and just to be happy and travel the world.”