From Chattanooga State to Published Author

February 27, 2017 | | Student Success

morgan smith

Morgan Smith, a 2011 graduate, is taking her passion for writing and turning it into a career. She has published four mystery novels and is currently working on her fifth book. She began her writing career at ChattState, where she wrote her first screenplay, Shades of Amber. She later used that script as the basis for her first novel.

Smith says ChattState was very supportive of her writing career, even putting her books in the bookstore. “It has always given me the opportunity to better myself and it hasn't stopped. ChattState gave me the opportunity to help people as a “Jo,” and now I am able to help as a member of the ChattState Alumni Association Board,” says Smith. As a part of the Alumni Association Board Smith aids in planning alumni activities to support the college. 

During her time at ChattState, Smith decided to major in mass communications because of her love for writing. This major allowed her to focus on journalism, broadcasting, and writing. That’s where she discovered her passion for cinematography and screenwriting. She also was a part of the “Ask Joe” campaign that showcased ChattState students on billboards, magazines, radio, and more to promote the college. “Being a Jo helped me to be more outgoing and taught me the importance of putting my best foot forward,” shares Smith. 

Smith currently works at the Visitor’s Bureau of Chattanooga as a Team Leader. She was drawn to the CVB by her love for Chattanooga and experience in tourism after working at the Tennessee Aquarium. When she’s not working, she is tweaking her other novels and editing her fifth book for publishing. The fifth book, Murder in the Meadow, will be a sequel to her previous book, Lies Through the Grapevine. Shades of Amber is currently available at Barnes and Noble and the rest of her books will be sold there in May. 

Smith says going to ChattState really prepared her for transferring to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. “Starting at ChattState made it easier for me to adjust to UTC because I did not feel overwhelmed by the large campus and coursework,” says Smith. She graduated from UTC in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in mass communication.