Running the stacks

Mary Kate Moeder

Lessons can be learned in unexpected ways. 

What initially began as a hobby of writing, quickly turned into a new role as a 

novel writer for girls cross country coach, Bryan Jones. 

Jones expresses that his love for writing started in his fifth grade class.

 “My fifth grade teacher liked to do creative writing exercises during language 

arts where he would put a picture up on the board and we had to write a short story based on it which I really took a liking to,” Jones said.

Although this passion for writing started at a young age, it was not until he had 

a job at a bookstore that he was inspired to start writing novels.

“Something about being around all of those books everyday made me want to 

try my hand at it,” Jones said.

He mentions how he would spend his breaks writing, and his passion for books 

led him to an idea that would begin his journey as an author.

“It all started out as just a random writing, but one day an idea just hit me and 

I think I spent about a week making a loose outline for what I thought could be a series of books,” Jones said. “The idea that started it, as well as subsequent ideas throughout the process of writing the stories, came from fantasy/adventure video games, books, movies, tv shows and comic books that I had enjoyed growing up.” 

As a cross country coach, he not only demonstrates important themes in his 

novels, but also to the girls that he coaches. 

“Certain themes and character traits used, such as staying strong in the face of 

adversity, believing in yourself and working hard to achieve a goal, certainly apply as I try to work those into inspiration given, or reasons behind certain workouts/runs the girls do throughout the season,” Jones said.

The lessons he has taught have undoubtedly created a lasting impact on the 

girls cross country team. Senior, Hope Schulte, explains how Coach Jones has tremendously affected her journey on the team. She shares how he motivates the girls to be their best and to step out of their comfort zones.

“Coach Jones has taught me to never give up and to try to get better every 

single day. I’m very grateful to have him as a coach and our team would not be the same without him,” Schulte said.

It is very apparent that he has created a legacy as not only an author but a 

coach, and it is one that will continue on for many generations to come. (Will add in if they make it to state).