- The Art of Falling
…grew up in Macomb County, Michigan, to two loving parents. From a very young age,she was creative and innovative – being an only child can do that to you. Both of her parents encouraged her to explore her creativity and gave her tools to access it. From the moment she could pick up a pencil, she was drawing and writing.
Growing up, she wanted to be many things: a stay-at-home mom, a teacher, a veterinarian, a fireman, a police officer, a cake decorator. She wanted to do it all. But being a writer or photographer never occurred to her. That wasn’t a job. That was fun.
Throughout her school days, she took dozens of art classes. In high school she took drawing, design, pottery, painting, and photography. She wanted to do it all. She found that photography was her favorite of all, and she took four consecutive photography classes during her junior and senior year. She quickly learned how to shoot and develop black and white film, how to make prints from her negatives, and soon became her teacher’s aid. Dani also took the yearbook class her junior year to combine what she learned from design and photography. She was also a member of the National Art Honors Society, and was the president of the NAHS during her senior year.
Despite her love for art, she found her passion in something else: writing. When Dani was a sophomore in high school, she attempted to write a book. After several weeks of writing daily on loose leaf lined paper, the story went nowhere, but she knew that she loved to write. She tried writing other books, but they all fell through. Senior year, she took her first official creative writing class and realized she was a natural at writing. Her focus shifted from drawing the characters she made up in her head to writing down their lives on paper.
After graduating, Dani participated in Camp NaNoWriMo, and in the months of June and August of 2013, she completed the first draft of her novel, “The Art of Falling.” For the next several years, she edited her manuscript while attending Macomb Community College and Oakland University. She worked hard for her B.A. in Creative Writing, signing up for numerous creative writing workshop classes. She learned how to edit her own work better, as well as her colleagues, and grew a thicker skin when it came to receiving constructive criticism of her own work. She also started working for The Oakland Post, the college’s student newspaper, as a photographer. After a year of working, she was appointed to the position of Photo Editor. In December, 2015, she graduated as Magna Cum Laude and with Departmental Honors.
Within the last five years, Dani has had photography, poetry, and short stories published in several small journals, including VOICES, Swallow the Moon, and Echo Cognitio. She also recently published a photojournalism book titled “Trans*parency: Revealing the Life of a Trans* Man” for her digital photojournalism class. Her book is available on blurb. She has submitted her work to the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, and won two certificates in print making, a certificate in photography, and a gold key in photography.
Dani spends most of her time planning out “The Age of Mythos,” hanging out with her boyfriend, reading, drawing, shooting photography, and painting. She is also interested in psychology, astrology, and astronomy. Her favorite authors include Veronica Roth, Neal Shusterman, James Patterson, Cassandra Clare, and Issac Marion.
Currently, she lives at home with her parents and two cats, whom she affectionately calls “fat” and “sass” (her cats, not her parents.)
For more information , visit her website at DaniCojo.com.