Productivity during Lockdown

I hope you are doing well during this difficult time. In Ireland, we are almost hitting a month into our lockdown. Its weird, watching videos of my city being a ghost town. I miss the trips into town to see my friends. I miss the chill pints had, at my favourite spot. I miss the chats and being in the same room with my friends. We still have the ability to stay in contact with the people we love. Thats what is so amazing about the internet. But you really do take for granted the physical connection. I miss being in the same room as my friends. I cant wait to give them massive hugs when this is all over.

 

Throughout lockdown, I have spent most of my time on Twitter and Instagram. With social media being a massive way to connect, the world has jumped into it. A common discussion on Twitter is productivity during lockdown. People set goals out for themselves throughout their lockdown. Mostly people do this to keep themselves busy during the stressful times. Goals that I have seen, include: pick up a new hobby, read all the books you procrastinated reading and my personal favourite, write that novel you’ve always wanted to write. At first, I liked this idea. A community of people on the internet encouraging you to be creative in this difficult time. Dont focus on the bad. Be creative during this shitty time. And who knows, you may write your magnum opus through all of this. I loved that energy. It got me into working more on my planned projects. I was ready to start reading and writing again.

 

However, it took a stressful turn for me. I started to see a toxic side to this productivity. A lot of people encouraged each other. They pushed each other to create. One of my friends was on a roll with her work. She wrote more of her planned novella and started a few songs. It was incredible to see that. I felt inspired to write. However, I didn’t work as much as I had hoped. I tried to force myself to write. Ive done it before, where I did write more and got out of my funk. I felt like I was forcing myself to be productive because everyone else was doing it. I felt really down about that. For the first time in a while, I am free to create the work I have always wanted to do. I am not working anymore and I spend majority time at home. I have all the time in the world to do my projects. But there was that nagging thought in my head, to sit down and get it done.

“What are you doing?” Why aren’t you writing that new poem? Turn off the game and start working?”

With those thoughts in your head, you start to hate your work. You aren’t creating from inspiration. Youre just forcing yourself to create. Also, my mental health hasn’t been great the past year. Writing does help, but sometimes writing takes a lot out of me, when i am not in the right mental space. My procrastination and the lockdown didn’t help it either. Then social media made that worse. The encouragement turned to criticism. I saw so many people attack each other for how they are spending their time in lockdown. It almost became a rule, that everyone must do something throughout lockdown. You must pick up a new hobby. You must read more. You must start and finish your defining work. Not everyone is like this, but there is that side of the internet. People picking apart your productivity. I wanted to start up my blog again and fix the format of it. I wanted to read more and write more. But I just couldn’t at the beginning. I was excited to do it, but I wasn’t in a good place to actually do anything.

Instead, I took the time to look after myself. I started taking priority over my self-care. I looked out for my mental health. I reduced communication with friends at the beginning, until I felt comfortable with reaching out. I chilled in my house by watching some new anime or Netflix documentaries (loved the Tiger King). When I felt anxious or down, I reduced my use of social media during the day. Some days, I switch off my Wifi as an opportunity to relax. As I felt better, I started to write again. I write when I feel inspired. My novella is coming along slowly. At first, I hated how slow my progress was going. Now, I learned to appreciate that slow time to marinate over the story. I am working on my characters and the story has come organically from those character sheets. I dont feel pressure to write this book by a set deadline. I did put myself through a deadline originally, but my mental health had other plans. Ive just decided to go with the flow, write my novella when I feel like it. Be creative and productive when I want to be.

 

Just because your productivity doesn’t match someone elses, that doesn’t make you lazy or less than them. Even though I havent done a lot of work during lockdown, I feel so much happier. My mental health has improved in this last month than the past year. Im not 100% happy. I still have my bad days like everyone else. But I did give that time for myself to heal in some way. That has been a positive for me in lockdown. You shouldn’t feel shame for wanting to be with yourself for a while. You shouldn’t feel bad for not starting that project. Everyone works at their own pace. During this pandemic, you are not obligated to do anything during self-isolation. Pick up a book, dont pick up a book. Start your project, dont start your project. Do whatever you want. Do whatever makes you happy and dont have anyone tell you differently. Online encouragement can be great, but sometimes it takes a dark turn. Make your mental health and comfort level a priority.

Sorry about that little rant. I just felt like discussing this idea that you need to be productive in lockdown. We are in a pandemic and some people dont feel like doing anything. Thats why I think its amazing seeing people on social media promote self-care and mental health care. We are in a scary time in history and we need to look out for each other. Look out for yourself. You cant be there for the people you love, if you aren’t there for yourself. And dont shame people for their productivity during self-isolation.

Hope you are all staying safe and indoors. Thank you for taking the time to read this. I shall see ye in the next post.

Bullying in films

Happy New year and the first post I’m going to start off the new year, is portrayal of bullying in movies. Very uplifting topic, I know. But listen. My work in progress novel revolves around the central theme of bullying and everything that comes with that. Bullying can lead to many victims with depression, anxiety, PTSD and many other mental illness. I’ve had my fair share of bullying experiences that has left me scarred for life (but I’ll talk about that in another blog post, maybe). Today, I wanted to analyse how bullying is represented in films, because I have a few thoughts on it. I chose a few films to talk about. I mainly chose films where bullying is the central theme to the plot.

 

Cyberbully (Emily osment)

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I started off with this film, because I think this would have been many people’s first film, discussing the effects of bullying. A friend of mine told me a story of when her class watched this film one day and everyone laughed at the scene where emily Osment tried to commit suicide. That horrified me when I heard that story. It showed how much people dont take the dangerous effects of bullying seriously. I remember reading comment threads on this film, and people arguing that what osments character was experiencing, was not real bullying. If she was not hit or physically harmed, she was not bullied. 2011/2012 logic there. I still break out into tears when Emily’s character attempts to kill herself. From the moment that Sia’s song “Breathe me” starts to play, I lose it.

The basic premise of the film revolves around Emily Osment’s character setting up an account on a site called Clicksters. Trouble ensues when osments character gets hacked and a nasty comment is posted on her feed. Actions of bullying, such as horrible comments, videos, starts. My thoughts on the film is, that it represents the effects of cyberbullying really well. It shows how easy it can be to be abused online. Moreover, it showcases the after effects of bullying brilliantly, with Osment’s character still wanting to check her social media after her suicide attempt. We live in an internet obsessed culture. Osments character becomes obsessed with the attention she gets online, even if its abuse. I also loved that the main cyberbully that went after osment, was her own friend. Albeit everyone bullied osment, it was her friend that started the hate campaign against her. The film shows that anyone could be your bully and how easy it is to give hate online, since you are not face-to-face with your victim.

However, this movie hasn’t aged well, as its use of social media feels outdated. The protagonist, a teenager doesn’t know how to block people online, and she never shuts down her account when the abuse gets bad. Many people have called osments character stupid and that she deserved the hate she got. My defense for this film is, that it sets up osments character to be less than knowledeable on the topic of social media. Her mother kept an eye on her use of the internet and wouldnt allow her to have internet on her phone. The key is knowledge and her mother didnt give her the freedom to learn how to protect herself online. So that explains osments lack of understanding, when it came to battling cyber bullies. The film did what it was supposed to do, which spread awareness of bullying online, even though its protagonist wasnt always the best model for that discussion.

 

Cyberbully (Maisie Williams)

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This film stars Maisie Williams and it tells the story of a girl being invaded by a foreign force through a hacker who threatens to ruin her life. The film is more a thriller than what the previous cyberbully film did. However, it centres around the concept of cyberbullying. This unknown hacker claims his purpose is to help victims of cyberbullying. Through Williams, we see the hackers toxic means of how they seek justice.

The film forces you to question the dark truth behind cyberbullying. Williams claims we live in a world where bullying is normal and that everyone does it. We live in a world where we can say what we want behind fake usernames. And as the hacker says, do you think that’s okay? The film puts you on edge and makes you look into the damaging effects you can have on a person’s mental health.

However, this films looks at bullying through the topic of hacking. The hacker threatens to post her nudes, if she doesn’t admit to her wrongs. That places the hacker as a villain. It skews the central message, I think. The hacker makes Williams see what she really is, however, as a viewer, I want to see Williams get out of this situation. With the tone of a thriller on the movie, it fails to push the theme of bullying to the forefront, and remains a cat-and-mouse type of game between Williams and the hacker. Even though the theme revolves around bullying, I see it a more enjoyable thrill ride of a film, then an educational one.

A Girl Like Her

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A Girl Like her tells the story of a girl, who is in the hospital from a suicide attempt and finding out she was bullied severely. The concept of the film interested me, when it showed that the victim wore a camera on her, when the bullying was at its worst. This brings into discussion the he-said, she-said diabolical when it comes to bullying. When you tell a parent or an authority figure, it’s very much a situation where it cant be proved. The bully will believe they weren’t in the wrong and that the victim cant take a joke. The authorities cant do anything, when they havent seen the abuse themselves. So I was interested when they had the protagonist wear a camera, so to document the abuse. I loved the premise.

However, I started to hate the film towards the end. The sense of helplessness from the main protagonist was heartbreaking. When you watched the footage that was collected, you cant help but despise the main bully. I remember watching this film with my mother, and she was disgusted by what she saw. The extreme abuse that the bully enacted on the victim, makes it hard to empathize with her. But that’s what the film attempts to do. They show the bully’s family life and how hard it is to maintain her popular status. I felt this idea of empathy for the bully, being shoved down my throat and it didnt take. I felt no sympathy for her. I think it was great that she admitted to her wrongs, especially after all that crap she spewed throughout the film. “She just couldn’t take a joke” “I didnt make her kill herself” I just couldn’t empathize with someone like that and the film really tried to get me to feel sorry for her.

A silent voice

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If you want to make a film that gets you to empathize with the bully, this is it. A silent voice tells the story of Ishida, a boy who bullied a deaf girl in primary school. Now, you are going to ask, how can you sympathize with someone who abused an innocent girl with a disability? Hear me out. A silent voice’s main theme revolves bullying, understanding, friendship and forgiveness. We follow the footsteps of Ishida, who started off as a carefree, ignorant child and into adolescence, where he is anxious, depressed and hates himself. He hates the bad stuff he did in the past and we start off the film with his suicide attempt. His main goal in the film is to make the deaf girl, Nishmiya happy. All he wants was to make her happy, and not to see her cry again. The film represents his redemption as he attempts to fix the wrongs he committed.

Moreover, the film doesn’t just focus on the wrongs he did. It showed a cast of characters who all had roles to play in the bullying of Nishimiya and how they had dealt with it in their adolescence. Even Nishimiya had her own issues from the past, where she blamed all the bad stuff on herself. She fixed this victim mentality upon herself, which failed to let her move on. She ended hating herself, just as much as Ishida hated himself. It’s a beautiful story captured in wonderful animation and heartbreaking music. I’m not going to go into too much detail, because this movie deserves a blog post all on it’s own. But it would be the best example of a film portraying the effects of bullying on children and teenagers.

I picked these films for their main concepts. I also picked them to show the varying portrayals of bullying in media. Majority of films showcase a pretty popular girl bullying the shy, good girl. Majority of bullying cases show that bullying occurs between friends. People closest to you are more likely to hurt you, than a random popular girl. A Girl like Her had the consequential popular girl bully the good girl, and even used the difficulties of maintaining popularity as a reason to bully. That’s not the central cause of bullying. You had in Emiy Osments’ Cyberbully, her best friend being the main bully of the story. This is more realistic than Maisie Williams Cyberbully. A Silent Voice transcends any of the other attempts, as it treats the story with care on the dangers of bullying on mental health, self love and suicidal thoughts. It doesn’t try to force a message down your throat or attempts to educate you. It tells the story of real people, with their real issues and problems. You see the good and the bad. It’s up to you how you feel about the outcome.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post. I hope to have my next post up in a few days. I wanted to talk about this, because it’s near and dear to my heart. I’ve always disliked how bullying is portrayed in films. Bullying and its effects are more nuanced than what any movie can portray. A Silent Voice is the closest I have seen to the best portrayal of bullying and its effects on screen. If you havent seen any of these films yet, check them out. Have a look at them and see what you think of them. This post is purely based on my own opinions on how films have portrayed this real problem on the screen. Hope you enjoyed. See you in the next post.

BookTuber/Writing Channels I Love

I dont watch that many booktubers or writing videos on YouTube. I have been trying to find more writing vlog to watch, because I find watching these type of YouTubers inspire me to keep writing. My writing has slowed down within the last couple of years.

Sometimes I hated these YouTubers for talking about reading and writing. With my reading slump, I felt like a failure when watching these people. They would talk about the 10 books they had read in the past month, whereas I barely get through one book. However, these channels helped me to get back into writing.

They talk about stories they love in these books and they talk about their writing process. I mean you cant say that watching these types of videos, wont make you feel inspired by the end. I wanted to write a blog post about these channels so that if any of you need some inspiration or you feel discouraged by your reading or writing, check out these channels. You may find the next best book for you to read and they could help you start writing again.

And for any of you who do watch some booktubers or writing channels, let me know of anymore channels I could watch. I’m trying to broaden my watchlist.

Sasha Alsberg (abookutopia)

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The first booktuber I need to talk about is Sasha Alsberg. Her channel is called @abookutopia. She was the first booktuber I came across and her channel was the reason I got into watching other literature channels. She is very bubbly, outgoing and brilliant to watch. Moreover, she has become a writer, as she published her first book in January 2018, called Zenith. She has made a few vlogs about her writing process through the time she was writing Zenith. She got me excited to write again. I just wanted to sit down, and write my own adventures again, after watching her vlogs.

She also makes videos about her favourite books of the year etc. She is a great source to go to, if you are looking for new books to read. She is one of teh more popular booktubers as she has met and interviewed several celebrities on her channel, such as Stephanie Meyer:

She is a young upcoming writer and a fun YouTuber to watch. I have yet to read her book, Zenith, but I have it ready on my bookshelf.

Lindsay Cummings 

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Next is Lindsay Cummings. I discovered her through Sasha’s channel. Since she co-wrote Zenith with Sasha, she appears in several of her videos. Lindsay has a channel of her own, where she discusses her love of reading and her own experiences with publishing. She is one of the more experienced writers I have come across on YouTuber, as she has published several novels. Overall, she has published 7 novels; The Murder Complex, The Fear Trials, The Death Code, The Balance Keepers Triology and Zenith. Her channel focuses more on the writing process and how to get published. I love the writing vlogs she does as you can see into her day as she goes through a draft of her novels.

She does a lot of videos on writing tips. She discusses NaNoWriMo and the difficulties of getting through your novel.

She is less bubbly than Sasha, but I love her writing advice. She makes a calm atmosphere in her videos, which makes it easier to feel inspired and listen to what she says. She is updating less on YouTube as she has moved house and having her first child with her husband. I wish her all the best in her endeavours, with her new life and her next novel, Nexus.

Shaelin Bishop (ShaelinWrites)

Her channel is more about the art of writing and she discusses her own projects she is working. I love Shaelin’s channel as she discusses her own projects, her own novels and short stories. She has published a couple of short stories, so I feel confident watching her advice videos and feel more inspired to write after her discussions. She took a hiatus from her channel, so I didnt go back to her channel for a while. She recently came back to her channel so I came back to her old and new content. My favourite videos from her are her discussing her works:

 

I love when she discusses how she came up with her ideas, and how she delves into these different worlds she writes about. She also talks about her set-backs, such as her growing disinterest in a project she used to love or the hardships of writing a particular work:

But my favourite videos of hers, are the more recent writing vlogs she is doing, where she writes out a short story and discusses what happens while she is writing it. She provides great advice on how to create an engaging story, interesting characters and unique dialogue. I love her simple set-up in her videos. It is just her and the camera. She just sits down and talks about writing. And I love it.

Those are all the booktuber channels that I love. Go check them out. They have really inspired to keep writing and reading. It’s a section on YouTube where I felt was what I was into. It’s not all prank videos or drama videos, which is nice to find. And if you have any other book/writing I can check out, let me know in the comments. I’d love to watch some more. See you in the next post x

My Favourite Reads on Wattpad

In my previous blog, I spoke about my affiliation with Wattpad. I said I would make a blog post about Wattpad one day. Today is that day. Recently, I went back to my old account (WHY??!!!). But I will say, that I was pleasantly surprised to see the works I saved onto my Reading List. I didn’t read all of them, which is a shame. I did read some and it is those works I shall be talking about today.

Joking aside, I do appreciate my time spent on this website. It helped me in a time, where I felt I couldn’t share my writing to anyone. Wattpad was a fantastic outlet for me, to meet other writers and share my work with them. Moreover, they have fantastic works on there that have been traditional published as well. So, who knows, you could get published from the works you post on Wattpad (definitely not mine. My works were trash!!).

So the first on my list is:

My Wattpad Love by Ariana Godoy (cold_lady19)

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Synopsis: Julie has always been the shy type. Her world changes when she finds wattpad, a very popular ebook community. She becomes addicted to it and even starts posting her own stories. But are friends, fans and votes all she will get from this site? Or is it possible to find love as well?

I’m pretty sure that My Wattpad Love was the first story I came across on Wattpad, when I first joined. I fell in love instantly. The story was engaging and the premise was fun, due to it being based on using Wattpad. From what I can remember, the characters were delightful and funny. Because of this book, I fell more in love with Wattpad as a community. This book blew up and I think it got officially published afterwards. Following the success of My Wattpad Love, Ariana wrote its sequel, Growing Up. It was good, but nothing compared to the first book. If I was to look back at this book, I might have reviewed it differently. I dont care. The book was influential to me at the time, and well done to Ariana for making a great presence on the Wattpad community.

Disclaimer: These next two novels I never finished but I loved what I read so much, that I decided to put them on this list. If you like the sound of them, check these stories out. 

 

A Unique Kind of Love by Jasmine Rose (foreversmilin)

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Synopsis: Lena Rose Winter was the typical seventeen year old girl, or so everyone thought. She had a secret, something she hated talking about. She knew what love was, and she dreaded it. The cause was that she lost someone very close to her heart because of it.

Liam Christopher Black was far from your typical bad boy. He was a good guy, the one who would sit at the back of the class, not making a sound. They said that time healed sadness, but it was hard for him. Trauma by the news of his family dying in a car crash caused him his voice. He was mute. 

Becoming friends with someone was a risk, because you could always end up caring too much. Lena didn’t care. She fought for the boy and for his friendship. They ended up falling for each other; hard. It seemed as if the world put obstacles in their way before permitting them to truly be together. Because, of course, after rain, the sun comes out.

This may be a sappy love story, but it’s got just enough sappiness for one person. It is a story about finding love after losing all hope of being happy.

This book interested me, due to the idea of a love between two people, where one person cant talk. Similar to The Shape of Water, I was intrigued on how the writer could convey a love story with so little communication. To me, Jasmine did an amazing job. It was really well written and I fell in love with the characters. I was invested in the story and that was enough for me. However, I stopped reading due to a certain revelation, that I didn’t really appreciate. It changed the way I viewed the story. I wished I finished A Unique Kind of Love though. If I read the novel now, I would feel differently towards this particular revelation. Who knows, I may re-read again sometime. Jasmine’s work became well known and I just found out, that it was traditional published as well.

 

Paladin by Sally Slater (SallySlater)

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Synopsis: Sam is the most promising swordsman among this year’s crop of Paladin trainees…and knows it. Brash, cocky, and unbeatable with a sword (well, almost), Sam is the kingdom of Thule’s best hope against the violence wrought by demons. The only problem is that Sam is really Lady Samantha, daughter of the seventeenth Duke of Haywood, and if her father has his way, she’ll be marrying a Paladin, not becoming one.

But Sam has never held much interest in playing damsel-in-distress, and so she rescues herself from a lifetime of boredom and matrimonial drudgery.

Pity that Tristan Lyons, the Paladin assigned to train her, is none other than the hero of her childhood. He hasn’t recognized her as Lady Samantha–yet– but if he does, he’ll take away her sword and send her packing.

Sam is not the only trainee hiding secrets: Braeden is a half-demon with a dark past that might be unforgivable.

Sam, Braeden and Tristan set out for the western coast, charged with rooting out an infestation of demons that has made the West unliveable. As they travel, they uncover a deep-seated corruption of power that threatens to derail everything they stand for. Rebellion stirs, led by a rival faction of warriors who tempt Sam to join them with an irresistible offer. A war between men is coming, and Sam must pick a side. Will saving the kingdom cost her life — or just her heart?

Reminiscent of Mulan, but with a medieval fantasy twist, Paladin is a tale of adventure, action, and romance.

I adored this book. I never finished it, but from what I read of it, I adored it. A medieval fantasy tale based off Mulan…I’m sold. From what I could remember, it was brilliantly written and the story was intense. I loved the main character of Sam. She is badass but also funny. I remember a particular scene in the novel, where Sam and her comrades stopped by a brothel after a long journey. All the men were excited and having fun with the prostitutes. Whereas, Sam told her prostitute the truth and they talked for most of the night. It was a hilarious scene of her amongst men and having to explain to a prostitute that she was not a man. It was a fantastic read. I wished I had finished it. Sally is writing a sequel as well. I believe the first few chapters are up on her Wattpad account, but you can find Paladin on Amazon, where you can buy a published copy of it. (I just realised all my favourite books on Wattpad, are now published. Excellent).

 

Those were my favourite reads on Wattpad. It’s amazing that all these books I adored on Wattpad years ago, have been published. Damn, I need to step up my game. But no, I am proud of these writers I loved back in the day. But this is not the end of the blog. I have another novel you should check out. I never came across this novel, when I was on Wattpad. But I found it in my local bookshop and I bought it, to support another writer on Wattpad. It’s called:

The Kissing Booth by Beth Reekles (@Reekles)

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Synopsis: Meet Elle Evans. Pretty, popular – and never been kissed. Meet Noah Flynn. Badass, volatile – and a total player. And also Elle’s best friend’s older brother…
When Elle decides to run a kissing booth for the school’s Spring Carnival, she locks lips with Noah and her life is turned upside down. Her head says to keep away, but her heart wants her to draw closer – this romance seems far from fairy tale and headed for heartbreak. But will Elle get her happily ever after?

Yes, you probably have heard of it, as it recently became a Netflix movie. I havent read the book or seen the movie, but I purchased the book when it was first published. It became my sisters favourite book. She fell in love with Beth Reekles’ novel and watched the film, when it first came out. I might still read it someday but I dont know. Check it out, if you are interested. I cant give my own opinion about this novel until I read it, which I may post on this blog one day.

 

That is it for my list. I hope you found something new to read out of this list. Check these authors out. They are great. Check out Wattpad. Who knows, you may find your next favourite novel there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why I Started Writing

When I started planning more blog posts, I realized I never talked about the beginning of my writing journey. You have to start somewhere 😂

My first memory of writing, was when I was eleven. I wrote a fanfiction based off my favourite game series, Kingdom Hearts. It was SO BAD!!! I tried to pretend that the whole novel idea wasn’t a carbon copy of my favourite stories. The character’s names were altered slightly from the main characters in Kingdom Hearts but it was obvious that they were still those characters. Instead of meeting Disney characters, my characters met Harry Potter characters. I cringe inside, just thinking about it. I learned then, I should create my own stories (mainly because my parents told my eleven year old self, that you would be caught for plagiarizing with my Kingdom Hearts based fanfiction).

 

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However, I learned from that first fanfiction. My parents claim I started writing even earlier than eleven years old. Thats impressive.

But I seriously started writing my own novels when I was thirteen. I remember that age because it was when I was a huge fan of Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight books and I started my own vampire series (dont judge me!!)

But I actually feel like the story could have been interesting but I stopped writing, when I started despising the direction of my main character.

I planned and wrote many mini novels, as I didn’t know how to plot a real novel. I wrote them into my school copies which would have been around 150 pages in each. It was wonderful to have that avenue to escape. I found joy in my writing at that age.

I could make up brand new characters and place them in worlds I never dreamed of. It was wonderful, until other people got involved. My writing became a reason for people to play around and manipulate. Its really hard to explain, and I may talk about someday. But after a while, I had to hide my writing hobby from everyone. I wrote in private.

But, I hated that. I did love the privacy but I wanted people to read my stories. I wanted feedback on my work. So I set up my own Wattpad account. I know!!!

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I’m not going to tell you the name of my Wattpad account because it is too embarrassing. I dont want you to see that. However, Wattpad gave me an opportunity to share my stories with others. Also, I met many other people who shared my passion for writing. Some wrote short stories, others wrote poetry. Everything was at my disposal on Wattpad.

It was the only place where I felt I belonged. I was accepted as a writer on this website. I followed and read so many stories, that helped with my writing. (I may actually make a blog post about my favourite stories I read on Wattpad).

However, when I entered college, I found a new home for my writing: Stanzas.

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I have talked about Stanzas in previous blog posts. It holds amazing events for writers of all ages, to come and perform. This became my new home where I met so many other writers my age and I didn’t feel alone when it came to my writing. I made lifelong friends from Stanzas and they helped develop my writing skills. Since then, I’ve gotten a couple of my works published in Stanzas chapbooks.

Since then, I have kept writing in doses. Attending an English course in college, I never found the time to write. My blog helped with that.

 

Writersblockwhat gave me further practice, outside of college.

With my blog, I am attempting to further my writing career. Along with that, I am sending my works out to different publications. I am trying to better myself in my writing and hopefully, make a career out of it someday. It may be wishful thinking, but I’m going to try.

Thats where I stand, at this present time. I hope to see you in the next blog. Talk to you later x

 

Pen to Paper

In recent years, it seems a common thread has disappeared, the use of a pen to paper. As a writer, I used the traditional way of creating my stories, with a notebook and pen. It was the conventional way to write novels and poems. However, I have seen more and more times where writers have exchanged the use of a pen for typing on a laptop. Whatever works for you when it comes to writing your work, go for it. But I do feel like we have lost touch with the traditional ways of writing with the new use of technology. Recently, I went to a March event with Stanzas. Stanzas is the writing group I go to every month where you share your works with many people (more info about Stanzas in my previous posts). Anyway, I went to a Stanzas event, and I remember someone going up to the mic and saying they had written down their poem instead of on their phone. It has become a standard thing in Stanzas with people having their stories/poetry written on their phones, and they speak through the microphones with their eyes glued to their phones. Even one of the head of Stanzas mentioned this at one of the events. It was nice to see someone read from paper instead of reading off a tablet or phone. It is the same with reading. More and more people read books on Kindle or online, instead of just holding a book in their hands.

Don’t get me wrong; I like the use of technology. I even use it to transfer my stories from paper onto a different medium. I plan to write a story on the perspective of social media or the use of it on paper. I love the use of technology in other mediums, especially in different mediums of storytelling. I love elements of texting and social media in films such as Personal Shopper:

 

Or Unfriended:

Image result for unfriended gif

 
and many more. Technology is a part of our psyche as a community. We use it to communicate our thoughts and emotions and to connect with others. It is a valuable tool for the new wave of storytellers. That is a very interesting evolution foir writers and civilization in general. However, I will always prefer my pen to scribble my ideas on paper before I use my computer or phone. What do you guys think? Are you an old-fashioned writer like me or do you write all your stories on your technological devices?

Click

Updating a new poem. I wouldn’t consider this one of my best but I got inspired by the last theme from Stanzas: the Internet. The Internet is very vast and constantly expanding. It is also filled with many dangers. I have a few friends in my life that experienced cyber bullying or the Internet changed their way of thinking. So I wrote this poem with that idea in mind. Enjoy and be safe on the Internet.

 

Life begins on a computer screen,

The internet allows for

Numerous possibilities.

Click,

A new browser appears.

Click,

A new profile is produced.

A window for me to place new photos,

Statues on a wall,

And add new people into my life!

Life is simpler on a computer screen.

Friends can be sorted into categories:

Best, close, acquaintances and non-existent

Click,

I just unfriended you.

So simple.

Click,

Get numerous likes on statuses and pictures

That presents a new identity.

Certain pictures get me likes,

Certain statuses get me noticed.

More likes lead to a boosted ego

And an alternate life.

Click,

Send revealing pictures.

Click,

Blocking all friends,

Till there is nothing left.

Click,

Life is now empty.

Mistakes building and never disappear.

The internet, a once free source,

Spreads these misgivings and lies,

Like a virus.

Click,

Life destroyed.

Friends list gone,

Statuses are fewer,

Profile is non-existent.

Computer screen smashed,

Soul shattered.

And the remaining pieces manifest,

Mould into a beast,

Cold and non-forgiving.

A creature of the internet’s own creation!