EvCC security officer: publishing novels and saving an opossum
Matt White is the author of The Immortal Veil, a fantasy book series that he writes under the pen name Mattius C.S. White. He is also coming up on the three-year anniversary of his work in the Campus Safety and Security Department at EvCC.
“It will [be] three years this coming August,” said Matt. “Time flies when you’re having fun.”
Matt was born in Salina, CA and lived in Alaska and Idaho before moving to Seattle in 2003. He worked as a Snohomish County juvenile corrections officer and eventually settled in Everett with his wife, Meridith Grogan.
He attended Lewis-Clark State College in Lewiston, Idaho where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in criminal justice.
The first book in White’s series, The Exiled Son, follows Tallic Shawen as he fights for balance in the Freelands and on earth. Tallic emerges as “the dying hope who can lead the Freelands against the SangreLin” and bring balance back to the earth, explained Matt.
“It’s incredible,” said Matt’s mother, Jody White. She expressed pride in her son’s success and said she was “not surprised”.
“Matt has always [been] gifted with words and really been tenacious about putting his nose to the grindstone with what he wants to [accomplish]. I was really pleased and impressed,” said Jody.
The Leaves of Dusk, the second book in Matt’s series, continues following Tallic after a “horrific battle”, according to Matt. Tallic joins forces with the Forghonyi, a group of warriors fighting for peace in the Freelands, and together they continue in the battle against the SangreLin.
Althought Matt has been successful in his writing, he considers his job at the college to be his only job. “Writing is more of a hobby that has just become part of my lifestyle,” he said. “I love doing it, so when I can’t find time to get some in I just get cranky.”
It took Matt nearly 10 years to complete his first two books. He explained it wouldn’t have taken as long if he could have been writing full-time. “But you have to pay the bills, and I like working at EvCC,” said Matt.
“I know he really does have a love of writing and that’s something that can sustain him throughout his life,” said Jody. “I also know that he cares about people and wants to help and serve in that way too. They’re kind of interesting and marriageable worlds.”
In addition to Matt’s service as a security officer at EvCC, he and his wife nursed an orphaned possum back to health after Meridith found her on the side of the road.
They named the possum Hattie and she currently lives in their living room and uses the litter box with their cats. “She does not like the crow we also have, but he is a completely different story,” said Matt.
Matt offered advice to aspiring writers. “Find something that can inspire you and lift you out of your ruts and go back to that until it no longer works,” he explained. “Write because you love it. Don’t expect to get famous or rich. Keep writing through the doubt and enjoy the journey as much as the finished product.”