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A Computer Brings One Writer's Poetry to Life
By, Hillary Rossi
Jessica Sheets wanted to be a writer. Actually, she always was a writer. She just needed a computer to become a published writer. She applied for services from the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and found herself on a waiting list she thought was too long. However, Jessica’s counselor from the Colville DVR office supplied her with a list of resources that stood to help her while she was on the waiting list.
“Easter Seals was first on the list,” Jessica said. “So I called them first, and they told me about you.”
Enter the Washington Assistive Technology Foundation. Executive Director Andrea Dimond and Jessica agreed on a computer that met her needs: a Compaq Pentium II with printer. Although she had insufficient credit and was supported by SSI and Welfare, she was approved for a microloan of $570 on a repayment plan of $25 per month.
Jessica now has the Compaq computer and has almost completed the final draft of her science fiction novel, which is being pursued by a publisher named Author House. She says it is a science fiction book for 12-16 year olds “like Harry Potter, but a little more grown up.” Author House tells her they have a check for $25,000 waiting for her upon the completion of the book.
Jessica also entered a poetry contest. In turn, the judges entered her poetry into another contest called “Poet of the Year 2005” sponsored by the National Library of Poetry. In August, she will go to Washington DC where the winner is to be announced. Naturally, Jessica is nervous about what will transpire in DC.
“It was all thanks to the computer that I was able to enter the [initial] contest,” she said.
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