BSC employee publishes first fiction book

Published: Jan. 13, 2023 at 11:59 AM CST|Updated: Jan. 13, 2023 at 9:48 PM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. – Shawnee Randolph was born to be a writer. She’s been putting pen to paper since she was a young kid. In high school, she took creative writing classes. In college, she majored in journalism. And now, she’s a marketing writer at Bismarck State College.

But her biggest accomplishment as a writer: she’s now published her first fiction book. And that’s the kind of writing she’s most excited about.

This story has been swirling around in Shawnee Randolph’s head since 2008.

“I didn’t start writing it until 2016. It took me a long time,” she said.

Now, the story is ready for others to enjoy.

It wasn’t that she didn’t want to write the story – she just got hung up on doing it the right way. Randolph bought dozens of books on how to write a book, then threw them away.

“I guess they were like a weight on my shoulders. I did rebuy some of those books though,” Randolph said.

A few months after throwing those books out, Randolph sat down to write.

“The Author and the Illustrator” is a modern-day fantasy story, along the lines of the Percy Jackson and Harry Potter books. The book is targeted at upper-middle school readers, but Randolph has gotten glowing reviews from readers aged 10 through 60, including one from her toughest critic.

“My 10-year-old daughter who’s a very picky reader, and it took me forever to get her to finally read it. She really likes Percy Jackson and Harry Potter but she liked it and I’ve had people all the way up to age 60 told me they have enjoyed it as well,” Randolph said.

Those encouraging words have inspired her to keep writing fiction.

“Fiction is definitely my love. It’s where my heart it,” she said.

“The Author and the Illustrator” is the first of what will be a three-book series. Randolph is already writing book two and hopes to have it published by Christmas.

“The Author and the Illustrator” is available on Amazon. Randolph hopes to have it in bookstores soon as well.