Brenda Bota: A Reporting Student

By Candace Pedraza

Style and her love for writing go hand in hand for 16-year-old Brenda Bota, who is able to express her views on fashion, life, and other topics through her creative and enthusiastic writing, portrayed specifically in her free-written poetry and fashion-oriented newspaper articles written for her school newspaper.

Born on September 10th, 1996, Bota recalls that she “first wanted to be a psychologist” when she gets older, but says she now wants to write for a magazine. She is a person with a connection to her roots, and she says her favorite food is a Ghanaian dish that features yam and spinach stew with turkey and mushrooms. Bota is also a good student, who says that sometimes she has “to not answer a very easy question because if I do, I will have a lot of attitude towards the rest of the class.” Sometimes Bota feels that “the questions are very easy, so I don’t understand why people can’t answer it, so it gets me mad that nobody knows the answer.” Intellect and style clearly gel well when it comes to Bota as a person.

In terms of personality, Bota is someone who is “very fashionable.” She said, “I can’t leave my house without jewelry,” when asked to describe herself. She continues by adding that she is generally perceived as someone who is “girly” and “conceited,” although she defends herself against this claim by stating that she just “doesn’t want to look ugly,” and jokes that she does often “check her pocket mirror” to ensure this is not the case.

As someone who likes to have fun and likes parties (although she says her mother barely allows her to attend one), Bota also likes more relaxing activities, such as sketching possible fashion ideas and penning poetry. She does believe that some of her “fashionista” influence came from her mother, who is a seamstress. They both avidly attempt to be stylish and Bota feels she got it from her mom. Style is not only conveyed in Bota’s writing, as she is able to reveal her literary fashion of writing in her personal poetry

Love, separation, and life are brought up in her poetry, which she usually finds time to create during her daily routine. She showed the writing to her mentor at the program “Girls Write Now,” in which she participated. The group gathered other students who were able to express themselves through literature, just like Bota. She said she trusted her mentor enough to look at this poetry, and eventually presented it to the entire group, who published it on the group’s website. Although her poetry is private on said site, the girls who completed the program with her are still able to view it.

The poetry allows Bota to express her daily thoughts in a free-prose style, enabling her to create poetry indicative of what she considers important in her own world, such as morals and her general daily experiences and thought.

“I come up with the ideas for the poems during my daily routine, basically as I go along,” Bota said when asked to describe how she gets her ideas for her writing.

Her mother, Ms. Bota, describes her daughter’s writing as having “a lot of creativity and emotion.”

The topic of trust is very important to Bota. She believes that this trait is a very important factor in any friendship, and broken trust has caused her to lose contact with a few people and become more private. She says that people she used to call her “BFF” are now simply people whom she greets with a simple “hi” at the church that she attends.

“I have people I talk to,” Bota summed up, when asked whether or not she had any close friends. Trust issues have made this a fact of life for Bota, who feels that she is not very social and does not need to have “best friends,” to be successful.

Her friend, Jeffrey Hado, sheds some light on this fact by saying “she usually stays out of other people’s business and worries about what is best for her.”

Another group Bota participates in is her church’s youth group. They meet and participate in various activities such as singing and discussions on important ideologies to live by, like easy forgiveness and trust, and their beliefs. Bota is a practicing Christian. However, Bota feels that most of the teens that attend the group are not there to learn but rather to hang out.

“Why would you come just to talk about other people?” she questioned when expressing her opinion about some of the teens who attend the youth group with her.

By her personal analysis, Bota is very artistic by nature, and very expressive in more than one way. She is very opinionated about a large array of topics, but opinions of others who know Brenda also offer insight into who she is as a person and as an aspiring writer.

Bota is a person who “likes having fun” and who generally enjoys what she chooses to do. Her “daily routine” is an inspiration for much of her prose and her “nerdy” character along with her love for fashion and success generally define Bota as a person and a student.

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