- Sophia Gorgens, Senior
- Woodward Academy
Woodward Senior Sophia Gorgens is not afraid to try new things. And as a seasoned traveler, accomplished equestrian, and published writer, Gorgens must be doing something right.
Gorgens, a Buckhead resident, was born in Washington D.C., but her father’s job as a German diplomat divided her childhood between Germany, Turkey and the U.S. This exposure to different cultures instilled in Sophia a love of traveling, and serious wanderlust. Luckily, Gorgens’ family shares her passion for traveling and has taken trips to over 20 countries, including Peru, Japan and Israel.
The downside to the constant relocations, however, was that Sophia was unable to pursue her interest in equestrianism. It was not until she and her family settled in Atlanta that Gorgens began horseback riding lessons. She immediately fell in love, not just with the sport, but also with the horses.
“I’ve always loved animals, so I always wanted to ride,” said Gorgens. “When my family finally decided to let me, it was really great.”
Aside from horseback riding, Gorgens developed an interest in writing. Already an avid reader, Gorgens felt that becoming a writer was a natural progression. “When you realize that you love reading,” said Gorgens, “it’s just another step to love writing because you get to share your own stories.”
In the fifth grade, she began drafting what would eventually become her first book, Dagger: A Horse’s Tale. By combining her knowledge of horses and skill in writing, Sophia crafted a poignant story about a stallion that must learn to trust humans after being taken captive and wounded by a ruthless criminal.
“Dagger itself popped into my head, as best as I can remember, while I was in a car, driving past the Boston skyline at night,” said Sophia. “I had a vision, and then I knew I wanted to try to communicate that with the world, to make it more solid and more real by putting it on paper.”
Sophia never dreamed, however, that a short story she began in elementary school would evolve into a 374-page book.
“I wrote it in a little notebook and progressively wrote it in a bigger notebook,” said Gorgens. “Then I typed it up and edited it several times.”
While the writing and editing processes proved difficult at times, Gorgens received ample support from friends and family members. After countless rewrites and edits, Gorgens was satisfied and decided to self-publish the work.
“Finishing the book was honestly quite a relief,” said Gorgens. “I originally did not want to publish the novel, but thr of my family, I did and I’m happy to have done so. Just seeing it in print is a beautiful thing. Dagger is available on Internet sites Amazon and eStore and at bookstores.
Despite all the time Gorgens devotes to her hobbies, she never neglects her academics. Gorgens maintains a weighted 4.5 grade-point average and a rank in the top five percent of her graduating class. She is also involved in her school marching band, Latin Club and Habitat for Humanity.
Gorgens is still uncertain of which colleges she will apply to, but hopes to attend school in the Northeast.
“Since I used to live in Boston,” said Gorgens, “I really like the Northeast and miss the snow up there.”
Gorgens intends on double majoring in English and Biology, both of which are her favorite academic subjects. She is also considering majoring in Pre-Medicine and eventually becoming a doctor.
While she will not likely be able to continue horseback riding in college, Gorgens is excited to explore new activities.
“I’m looking forward to trying fencing and skiing,” said Gorgens. “If they have a martial arts class, that would be fun, too.”