ISSUED: 4 April 2016
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens
SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV — The Shepherd University Scarborough Society art and lecture series will sponsor a program featuring novelist and alumna Michelle Files on Thursday, April 7 at 7 p.m. in the Scarborough Library reading room. Files will discuss the path that led her to becoming a published author and how she used her Shepherd degrees to market her first novel, “Soul Survivor.” The program is free of charge and open to the public. A dessert reception will follow the lecture.
After double majoring in business administration and accounting as an undergraduate in 2006, Files returned to Shepherd to earn her M.B.A. in 2013. She has used what she learned in business school to market her new adult paranormal romance novel, “Soul Survivor.”
“Being an author is really owning your own business, so I understand the financial aspects from that end,” said Files.
“Marketing, branding, and finding creative, innovative ways to reach people are key when you’re a new author. I’ve used a lot of what I’ve picked up at Shepherd.”
In 2013, with plans to write a sequel to “Soul Survivor,” as well as a trilogy based on a fictionalized version of Shepherdstown, tragedy struck when Files’ husband, Shepherd alumnus Christopher Michael Files, died suddenly at age 29 in a motorcycle accident. In the aftermath of his death, Michelle put her fiction writing on hold as she channeled her heartbreak into a nonfiction exploration of her personal grieving and rebuilding process. She plans to publish this work, “How I Learned to Shine Again: My Story of Loss, Grief, Healing and Restoration,” and will offer a special preview at her Scarborough Art and Lecture Series presentation.
In addition to her writing, Files works seasonally as a certified public accountant with Smith Elliott Kerns and Company, LLC and teaches undergraduate and graduate accounting classes at Shepherd main campus and the Martinsburg Center.
The Scarborough Society is a friends of the library organization sponsored by the Shepherd University Foundation. Annual membership dues help support library acquisitions, technology, and programs. Membership is open to all interested supporters of the Scarborough Library. For further information about the lecture series or the Scarborough Society, contact the Shepherd University Foundation at 304-876-5397 or visit www.shepherduniversityfoundation.org.
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