By. Mya Colwell
This year, the Bolo Tie Collective has lots to look forward to. On November 15, we are hosting our first in-person anthology launch since the pandemic, we are back to in-person workshops, and we are accepting submissions for Volume VII of our anthology!
We also have a brand-new executive committee, full of passionate writers and editors, who are thrilled to represent the club and help evolve it further.
Molly Gisela, the president of the Bolo Tie Collective, is stepping into this role for the first time. Molly first joined Bolo Tie in 2020 as the events manager, where she ran workshops and organized other writing events. Due to her experience in governance and boards, Molly felt very equipped to take on the role as president and serve the club in a new way.
“I just felt that if the day were to come where I was asked to lead in a role like president, I would have so much tangible knowledge to provide that maybe I could add some structure and sustenance to whatever organization that I joined,” she says.
“I have loved reading [and writing] from a very young age,” says Molly. “Growing up disabled and poor, I was… bullied. So I spent a lot of my time alone writing and reading, on school breaks and lunch breaks. Those were my escapes. And I found that [using writing as an escape] continued into my adulthood.”
This year, Molly wants to push the boundaries of what the Bolo Tie can accomplish while also maintaining the original intentions of the club. “I want us to take some risks. I want us to try and challenge ourselves to be brave, and I want to talk to other students who aren’t in classrooms Monday to Friday, constantly sharing their writing.”
“I want to engage with students who, like myself when I was younger, just write on their own in solitude or for solace, and I want to get them submitting their work and getting their voices out there,” she continues.
Derek Lantz is this year’s Co-VP English. He hopes to help extend the Bolo Tie Collective’s reach and help make it a name that carries weight outside of campus walls.
“This is a unique club,” he says. “I haven’t heard of this elsewhere and [writing is] a skill set that I want to foster in myself, so it kind of seemed like a no brainer [to join].”
So far, his favourite part about being on the executive is the people. “It’s fun to get together,” he says. “It’s been fun to have a community effort, a group effort to [get] something rolling.”
Mya Colwell is stepping into the Co-VP Communications role after working as an editor on the sixth anthology. “I hope to get more communications students engaged with the Bolo Tie Collective this year and encourage them to explore creative writing,” she says. “I’m so excited to be working with a great team of passionate people.”
Ashley Alton is stepping into the brand new role, VP Student Engagement, this year. She submitted several pieces to the Bolo Tie Collective’s anthology last year and decided that she would love to help other students submit their work from a position on the executive. “I hope to just get more students engaged with [the Bolo Tie Collective] and just to spread the word,” she says.
Her favourite part about being on the executive so far has been participating in workshops and brainstorming creative ways to involve students, and she hopes to help students reach their potential as writers.
Brandon Lang is bringing his talents to the communications manager position. He joined the executive because he wanted “to be more a part of MacEwan’s writing community,” he says. Brandon hopes to extend the reach of the Bolo Tie and is excited to work with the team.
Brooklyn Byers is stepping into the events manager role this year. “When I saw that there was the position for events manager, I was really excited to be able to get in there and inspire people to become more active with literature and writing,” she says. “I’m definitely hoping to try and get numbers up at our events and see if we can increase the amount of people that even know the Bolo Tie Collective exists.”
Her favourite part about being on the team so far has been seeing the excitement and passion that the executive has for literature and for getting students involved.
Solange Begin is this year’s social media manager. “I’ve wanted to join for so long and I just never got around to it,” she says. “But when I found out that Molly and Brendan [Leach, the Bolo Tie Collective’s president for the sixth anthology] were a part of it, I wanted to get into it as soon as possible.”
“Everyone is so fun and helpful to work with,” she adds. “I saw a bunch of people at the open mic night and everyone was so talented. I’m excited to just be able to work with so many talented people.”
Chelsey Karran is stepping into a new treasurer role this year. “I [wanted] to increase my involvement on campus, and when Molly asked me if I could be the treasurer for the Bolo Tie Collective, I thought to myself, ‘Why the heck not?’”
“One thing I would like to accomplish this year is encouraging more student engagement on campus,” continues Chelsey. “Joining clubs has really greatly improved the university experience for me, and I hope it will do the same for others.” Her favourite part about being on the executive so far has been “working with so many talented individuals, with different skill sets and perspectives than [her] own” on the Bolo Tie team.