#DailyWings:“You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore.” -William Faulkner
Happy June, writers and friends! Wow, has it really been a month (and some change) since my last blog post? A part of me is appalled that I took a month-long hiatus from writing, but the other part of me wants to remind myself that there is a very good reason why I haven’t been around.
Four days ago, I was finally able to make an announcement that I’ve been waiting to make for months. It’s the kind of announcement that is usually made right after a college graduation, when people are moving to new places, taking on summer internships and full-time jobs, and traveling to other countries. Honestly, it was hard for me to keep blogging without being able to share this announcement with you; I felt like keeping it inside was more difficult than not blogging at all.
Thankfully, I’m finally in a good place both emotionally and professionally now where I can share this publicly with you and my friends here on social media. READ MORE
#DailyWings:“What is so marvelous about living today is that it is possible to extend, like a flower, spreading petals in all directions.” -Carolyn Kizer
One of my main goals for the year is to branch out as a blogger and participate in multiple writing initiatives within the blogging community. This month, I’ve extended my Internet “feelers” out and, after mustering up quite a bit of courage and swallowing my anxiety, joined a few blogfests and social media writing groups.
A couple of these writing communities are widely known among hundreds of bloggers, while others are newer or comprise a close-knit group of people who know each other very well. Joining them has been a little nerve-wracking. It’s like you’re back in high school and approaching the different social groups during lunch for the first time; you introduce yourself and wait for a response, unsure of whether or not you’ll be welcomed.
The difference between high school and these online writing communities, though, is that you will almost never be met with rejection from the writers (unless, of course, you’re a troll who just shares personal promotions everywhere). I’m incredibly excited – not just because I get to make new writer friends, but also because this is a chance for my blog to be a part of something that’s bigger than itself. READ MORE
#DailyWings: ““We are very good at preparing to live, but not very good at living. We know how to sacrifice ten years for a diploma, and we are willing to work very hard to get a job, a car, a house, and so on. But we have difficulty remembering that we are alive in the present moment, the only moment there is for us to be alive.”-Thich Nhat Hanh
It’s been a while. With newspaper articles, magazine stories, research papers and midterm exams swinging at me like cherry bombs every few days, I’m beginning to understand how a juggler must feel. These days, I’m averaging four hours of sleep and barely have time to eat or take a mental breather. Occasionally, I’ll watch an episode of “My Mad Fat Diary” just to remind myself not to go, well, mad.
I miss writing. To keep myself content, I have written some poetry. Short pieces, portholes for me to displace my strongest emotions.But I miss prose. I miss long-winded sentences that keep going and going until you aren’t quite sure how you got from Point A to Point B but you know you’re in a different place than you were before you started and it feels like a good thing.
It’s true that I crank out two to four stories every week for the town newspaper, and it’s been an incredible training experience so far. But last night, I cracked open my journal for the first time in a month. One month! I couldn’t believe that it had been that long since I actually sat down to write for myself without worrying about making the sentences perfect. I miss making mistakes and letting them be. I miss writing for the love of it. READ MORE
#DailyWings:“The question should be, is it worth trying to do, not can it be done.” -Allard Lowenstein
Whew! National Novel Writing Month is finally over, my fingers are about to fall off and I can go back to having a real life again. Wonderful.
The last couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of emotions and dragging plotlines and flying candy bars. First and foremost, I want to give a very big congratulations to all the NaNoers in Chapel Hill, N.C., and around the country who met their personal goals, whether they were to 5k or 50k or simply write every day. We did it.
For those of you who are curious, I made it to 43,705 words by the stroke of midnight. Unfortunately, I did not reach my goal of 50,000 words, but I was so close! On Nov. 30, the very last day, I wrote more than I ever have before — about 10k in one day. That is crazy. (The words weren’t exactly fine contributions to the novel, but quantity > quality is the essence of NaNo.) This year’s writing challenge taught me so much about myself and my writing. For one whole month, I showed that I love writing enough to put it above all else, even school work and health — this is no exaggeration, as I was sick during the last week. Still, it was worth every hour spent groveling over word vomit. READ MORE
#DailyWings:“‘Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” -Stephen King
The funny thing about the end of summer school is that, after an intense three weeks of studying and fast learning and exam-taking, everything slows down and suddenly you have a wide space of time lying before you.
Yesterday, I went to the interfaith chapel that is connected to the local hospital and spent five hours in one of the meditation rooms. I almost never see anyone in the chapel, even though it’s a beautiful and peaceful place to spend time alone, reflecting. The meditation rooms are low-lit and set at cool temperatures.
Doesn’t this look lovely?
Now, I don’t really affiliate myself with any religion. To me, religion is deeply personal and individualized because it makes up your entire belief system and spiritual views. No two people’s religions are alike, no matter what name you give it. And so even though I don’t go to church or attend religious activities regularly, I still try to find the time to meditate.
Question of the Day: What do you personally get out of taking your time to blog? To put simpler, why do you blog?
One of the most critical aspects of creating a novel or even just a short story is characterization, because the characters are what makes the story come alive. Their facial features, their actions, the way they view the world and the other characters they interact with, their thoughts and feelings, and their reactions to events all play major parts in determining who exactly the characters are.
Sadly, I do not fully developed my characters well enough at all. I get so excited with my SNI (Sexy New Idea, as Frankie Diane calls it) that I delve right into it and start writing my heart out. However, for all of the novels that I have begun in the past, there comes a time when I hit a total roadblock, a dead end if you will, and run out of things for my characters to say and do on a day-by-day basis. And I believe that I must attribute this to my lack of complete characterization. How can I write the audacious, romantic, inspiring story of my main character…if I myself do not fully know who exactly the main character is? How can I speak for my character when I have yet to know him or her through and through?
I actually wrote this list on Sunday, July 5, 2009 when I was bored and wanted to write something mainly for the sake of writing. I hope you find this inspirational, especially if you are a blogger with blogger’s block. ;]
#1: You can express yourself freely in whatever way you choose. No matter if you write a dramatic play, a tragic storyline of two lovers, a journal entry about your day, or a poem simply about Twinkies, every word that flows out from your mind is a part of you in some way. Expression, in every way, is powerful. READ MORE
#DailyWings: “You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore.” -William Faulkner Happy June, writers and friends! Wow, has it really been a month (and some change) since my last blog post? A part of me is appalled that I took a month-long hiatus from writing, but the […]
#DailyWings: “You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.” -Dr. Seuss Valentine’s Day is just two days away, but if you still don’t have any plans set in stone there is still time. The bad news is, all the restaurants are probably already booked for the entire […]
#DailyWings: “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.” –Eduardo Galeano I was at work when I learned about what had happened in Paris on January 7. At the office, we have about seven or eight television screens, all of which display […]
#DailyWings: “All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.” ― Charles M. Schulz I am really excited about today’s edition of “The SELF Diet,” mainly because this was the first dish that made me actually love cooking. This dish, a lemon-garlic spaghetti piccata, was inspired by a recipe for “Linguine with Tuna, […]
#DailyWings: ““We are very good at preparing to live, but not very good at living. We know how to sacrifice ten years for a diploma, and we are willing to work very hard to get a job, a car, a house, and so on. But we have difficulty remembering that we are alive in the present […]