Elizabeth Gibson wrote her first story at age 7.
Now 17, the Camas High School senior is a published author.
“Splinter,” a science fiction novella, follows the story of a girl caught in a web of a corrupt futuristic entertainment industry. The book was inspired by the movie, “The Matrix,” which Gibson watched as a young child.
“That has influenced by whole life,” she said. “Most of the stories I have written are science fiction. It is big in my family. My parents also watched a lot of Star Trek when I was growing up.”
The book is currently available on several online sites, including Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Powell’s Books.
Gibson is planning to market the book locally with author signing events, but doesn’t have any firm dates yet.
“I have always wanted to publish a book, but never thought I would,” Gibson said. “When I actually saw it for the first time in print, I felt kind of suspended for a moment, as if it were not actually happening to me.
Gibson worked with Sione Aeschliman, a professional freelance writer, after meeting her at a family dinner party. The two immediately hit it off and Gibson showed her a sample from the manuscript.
“She thought it was really good and worked with me for a year and helped take the book in a different direction.”
Aeschliman immediately noticed the potential in Gibson’s work and offered to be her editor.
“Too often we’re told that what our hearts want isn’t practical and we give up on our dreams,” she said. “Elizabeth is a talented writer with a strong voice and interesting ideas, and regardless of her college major, I hope she continues to make time for her heart-work, too.”
Aeschliman noted that the originality of the idea, playfulness, descriptions and narrator’s distinct voice impressed her most about “Splinter.”
“The first-person narrator is a funny, intelligent, charmingly self-aware high school student, basically Elizabeth,” she said.
Gibson’s friend, Calla Mavros, who attends the Vancouver School of Arts and Academics, designed the cover art for “Splinter.”
“We have been friends for awhile, and she does amazing artwork,” she said.
“She took it in her own direction and it became really cool.”
During the process, Gibson said her parents, Thomas and Maryika, were very supportive, as were her friends and editor.
“My mom helped with all of the expenses of publishing,” she said. “I was very grateful for that because it gets expensive.”
Gibson is planning to write a sequel, but isn’t sure when. For now, she’s focused on the college admissions process. Her school of choice is UCLA.
“I would like to get a degree in something practical and also in theater,” Gibson said. “I am also interested in computer science, political science and international affairs.”
Getting published at the age of 17 is something she won’t ever forget.
“Just seeing my life dream actually happen was amazing,” Gibson said.
For more information about “Splinter,” visit. www.outskirtspress.com/webPage/isbn/9781478742470.