Rachel Simmons knows how to multitask.
Let’s see, she is an artist, a writer, a dreamer, a rock ‘n’ roll singer, thinker, a talker, and also a 10th-grader at Carrollwood Day School who carried a 4.79 grade-point average while participating in five clubs.
Sometimes, she said, she finds time to relax and be just like any other high school sophomore.
Simmons created a Manga comic book for the annual personal project report that CDS demands for all 10th-graders. She enjoyed drawing and wanted to challenge herself, scoring a perfect 100 percent with the finished project, even though she had never tried to create a comic book before.
“I just always liked writing and drawing and it came to me one day,” Simmons said. “I was always getting presents that involved art, but I never used them. This time I decided it would be fun and different, so I used them.”
Simmons said she started to enjoy writing when she was in fourth grade and wanted to make her project a mix of art and writing. She finished and it was time to move on.
“I am very academic,” Simmons said. “I liked working on the project. It was a lot of work, but art can also be evil sometimes. It isn’t easy, but it is also a lot of fun.”
Simmons said she was told by her friends that it would be too much work. Simmons just said, the more work the better, and moved on. She doesn’t know what she wants to do when she leaves Carrollwood Day, a place she has attended since kindergarten, but isn’t obsessing over her future just yet.
“I’d like to be a writer because it is such a great way to open up your mind,” Simmons said. “I don’t want to write biographies because you have to give specific facts. I like fiction. I like being able to tell a story. Fantasy writing is really something I am interested in because there is no finite ending. I can make it all up as it goes along. There’s nothing like invoking emotion through words.”
Simmons said that she doesn’t spend every minute with her nose stuck in a book. She likes to goof off with her friends and just try to cram as much as she can into a day. She also likes friends that like to talk about everyday life. Simmons has a Facebook account but isn’t obsessed with it.
“I like to talk with my friends about things that matter,” Simmons said. “I won’t put my education to waste. I will try my hardest at everything I do and I never waste a minute trying to do a lot of everything.”
She also is the lead singer of a rock ’n’ roll band called Hovermode that plays plenty of events in the Tampa Bay area. It’s a lot of work for someone who doesn’t need a lot of extra work, but Simmons said it gives her a chance to expose yet another side to a complex world.
“When I am on stage, I am a different person,” Simmons said. “It’s natural. Then I go to school the next day and I go back into my other self.”