Crafting Wondrous Worlds through Words: Juliette Walkuski
Fourteen-year-old Juliette Walkuski settles down at her desk and carefully selects a playlist – perhaps some Fall Out Boy or Amber Run. She takes a moment to collect her thoughts, opens a new document on her computer, and begins to write. Although Juliette is only in 9th grade, she's drafting a novel she hopes to complete by the end of the year. The novel is currently called The Immortal Wings. It's about a Nephilim, or half-angel, half-human, who's trying to figure out what precisely he is and what he is capable of. The novel follows Archer, although it will include a prologue that explains how Nephilim came about, describe Heaven and how some of the angels fell. The story is so vibrant that it's almost as if the main character, Archer, is guiding Juliette through the novel rather than the other way around. She's had the idea for the book ever since she was in sixth grade, but could never quite figure out how to put her idea into words…until now. Juliette's enjoyed reading ever since she started school, but it wasn't until sixth grade that she discovered her love for writing. She began writing fanfiction, which are fictional stories based on existing books or movies. Her very first fanfictions were based on the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyers and then she wrote one inspired by the video game Legend of Zelda. She's currently writing two fanfictions based on the Fallen series by Lauren Kate. Although Juliette would describe herself as mature and intelligent she still definitely enjoys goofing around and having fun! She dreams of becoming a New York Times best-selling author one day and she hopes to attend college to study screenwriting/film. Juliette has 65% hearing loss and Bell's palsy. She's had surgery to lift her face because of her Bell's palsy and also has had her ears reconstructed because they are closed up due to microtia. She sports a bone-conducted hearing aid, which sends the sound waves to the middle of her ear canal, where she can still hear. Juliette is thankful for all the wonderful people she's been able to meet through the hearing loss community. She enjoys meeting other people with hearing loss and frequents the weekly chat on DeafandHoH.com. Juliette's has some advice for other kids and teens with hearing loss and/or Bell's palsy: "Don't care what others think…Your disabilities should never stop you from making friends, it's about the type of person you are that counts… you should never care about what someone thinks about your physical looks, it's the inside that counts most. Stick to those who love and like you for YOU, not anything less."