By Olivia Ryckman // In December of 2019, one of my awesome professors, Tanya Perkins, asked me and a few other students in my Advanced Fiction Writing class to submit an abstract to Johns Hopkins University’s Richard Macksey Undergraduate Student Research Symposium. (A mouthful, I know.) I remember sitting in shock that Tanya deemed my work worthy enough to submit to a symposium, at Johns Hopkins at that. If accepted, I would present my research and creative writing at the symposium in Baltimore. It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so of course, I accepted it.