Jacey Regalado '21 pens novel
Jacey Regalado ’21 had a message she wanted to deliver to the world.
With the help of Wilbraham & Monson Academy, she did so.
After completing her Novel Writing class at the Academy, Jacey self-published “High to Death,” a 33,000-word fictional piece about a high school student’s struggles with mental health and drug addiction.
Jacey on why she wanted to take WMA’s Novel Writing course: “I took Novel Writing class because the idea of writing a book has always infatuated me. The moment I found out there was a possibility of publishing my own book one day, I instantly started to think about what I would write, and what I would wanted my message to the world to be. So, I used the Novel Writing class as an opportunity to show others a message I thought was important enough for them to read: the challenges of drug abuse and mental illness.”
Jacey on why she selected this particular subject: “I choose to write about drug abuse and mental illness, because in the world I grew up in they went hand in hand. People with really severe mental illness would turn a lot to drugs as an escape. Or vice versa, I grew up in a really wealthy community and the majority of the kids around me were raised by their nannies with their parents constantly gone, and enormous amounts of money at their fingertips. In such a lonely world, or out of boredom or curiosity, whatever it was they would try drugs, and with that latter would come mental health struggles. I wanted to write something that could help anyone know they are not alone, with whatever they may be struggling with.”
Jacey on the biggest obstacle she faced while penning her first novel: “There was a bit of self-judgment. While writing the book, I felt almost hypocritical of myself because a lot of the time I gathered passages from my own diary of all the pain I had felt in the past. Putting it into words was emotionally draining; passages from years ago and trying to think if I was even following the message I was trying to portray in my own book. It was definitely a journey of self-growth.”
Jacey’s reaction when she held her book for the first time: “I felt ecstatic and thrilled; it just didn’t seem real. It was so cool to hold something I created in my hands. It was a very powerful feeling of accomplishment.”