Drew University Alum Set to Publish First Book

Taylor Tracy C’17 points to Drew’s liberal arts education for sparking career

March 2024 – Drew University alum Taylor Tracy C’17 will publish her first book in May 2024.

The book, Murray Out of Water, is a middle grade novel-in-verse, explained Tracy, who has already been contracted for a second book by HarperCollins’ Children’s Publishing.

Tracy, an art history and English double major, began her writing journey at Drew.

“There’s a definite correlation between the curiosity and work ethic I developed at Drew and my current work as a soon-to-be-published writer,” she said.

Tracy points to the liberal arts aspect of her Drew education as a major influence on her career.

“It ultimately empowered me to be able to take creative risks and work with intention and determination,” said Tracy.

“While I never took a creative writing class, I took classes across numerous departments that ranged from sociology to art history to environmental science to contemporary poetry. It gave me the social, cultural, and historical contexts necessary to write with grounded, compassionate care for the emotional needs of people in a specific time and place while addressing real-world forces and issues.”

Tracy pointed to persistently studying poetry across a number of courses and professors, and taking part in the New York Semester on Media and Communications as particularly impactful experiences that introduced her to styles, analyses, and connections she still leans on to navigate the creative and publishing landscapes.

After Drew, Tracy earned an MA at NYU before COVID-19 derailed plans to pursue a career in theater marketing. Tracy turned back to writing and submitted projects to several publishing houses over the last several years before selling Murray Out of Water in 2022.

She’s since juggled creative and administrative careers as a business and writing assistant for a queer team of musical theater writers and as a literary assistant at a theatrical agency, all while attending to her own writing.

Through it all, she comes back to her time at Drew.

“I can’t separate the writer I am from the education I received there.”

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