Sunday, October 21, 2012

I've always noticed that

people are shy to share their writing and art. When you hand someone your paper you spent five hours pouring your heart and soul into it, there is implacable stress that comes with. You're nervous, you want them to like it--like you. This is is a part of you, a piece of your soul you've handed them. What is written in their hands is also written on your heart, and sharing something that is of yourself, the essence, is terrifying. Sometimes what you create scares you, so you try to demolish.

When you go through someone else's art or writing or photography, you're seeing something you're not necessarily supposed to see. People are unearthed by their own hands, their creation. It's a sneak peek through a door they're afraid to open. We are so scared about who we are.

I've hated almost everything I've ever written. I've never shown anyone what I've actually enjoyed. What I've made is what I am, it belongs to me. I'm bad at opening up.

But I'm trying to do better, which is the most you can expect out of anyone, really. Working on some more projects, filing through the oldies to see who I was when I wrote this and that. I find it strange to see the kind of person I once was in contrast to who I am. I find it relieving.

It's OK to be scared about sharing your stuff. That's you, that's human. But don't be afraid to write or draw or sing for yourself. I suppose, that while the goal is to have your works known and contributed to the skeptic eyes of people, that in the end the number one person you'll have to answer to is yourself.

Virgil tried to burn his own work. Michelangelo threw away thousands of his own drawings. It's natural to dislike what you've created, the best of them did. But don't you ever stop creating. There is one quote I really enjoy from Kurt Vonnegut:
The arts are not a way of making a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."
— Kurt Vonnegut, A Man Without a Country, 2005 
You will have created something. And what is more beautiful than creation?

small things

            My dad once told me that things like not throwing the trash out, putting lids back on the toothpaste, and not putting the toilet seat down are things that often cause divorce. Though I've never been married, I found the same principle can be applied to a lot of things, like friendship and teamwork. The small things that people do that really speak about your character, like whether or not you attempt to do a homework assignment that you completely do not understand (like math), or if you kick your friends stuff if they drop it, it was always the small things that occur often that you tend to remember.
            And that's what I think I could do to make a positive difference, anywhere and anytime. No, I'm not saying that I'm going to go out and do another one of those ridiculous Pay It Forward things, where you have to do something blatantly nice for people. But as I said, the small things. Helping a person in the hallway. Respecting another person's opinion, even if you disagree with it. Picking up trash that's not yours. The small things that people notice and sometimes forget.
            As for the past example thing and the future plan thing, I don't really have much to say. I help people out when they drop stuff. I help people with their homework. Pick up trash that's not mine. I even compliment things, but only if I honestly like it. I know how it is to have a bad day, but I also know about how one small thing someone does for me, like compliment my shirt, or help me clean up after a project, really turns my day around. So I think I'll do that small thing, and help turn around other peoples days, whether it's doing dishes for my mom, or picking up a pencil for a stranger.
            Small things build up. They are significant. The earth is made of atoms, and atoms split can cause big destruction. Small things can become big. This post is made out of 400 words. There are only 26 letters in the alphabet, and when you put them in the right order, they can say big things. Ideas are intangible but sentient and you cannot destroy them. They can start very small, but can be very incendiary. Radical. Even the ocean was once a drop. Even God started the universe with a band of light. 

Once I wrote an article on Triond

And now I need a new blog post. I made a penny.

Learn to Let Things Go

"One of the hardest things we, as human beings, have to learn is how to let things go. This article is your guide for learning how to understand, accept, and move on.

You’re hurt. You’re angry. Somethings happen–you’ve been betrayed by a trusted friend, you’ve gotten in a fight with a loved one, things are ending in an important relationship to you. These things happen in life, and they are not always fair. Sometimes, people must just let go. That is not say every “useless” effort and relationship is unsalvageable, but when they are, it’s often hard to accept, often digging hole deeper on these unfortunate trials. Everyone heals differently–but here are some steps to consider on your personal path to peace. 

1. Understand what happened.
The crucial first step. If one does not understand how events spiraled out into they way they were, how can they ever expect to know how to avoid history from repeating itself? Understand what happened, why it happened, how it happened. Evaluate anyone else and yourself in the issue clinically and objectingly. Your feelings may keep you from truthfully admitting to yourself what happened–but if you can come overcome this obstacle, you will become a stronger person with a clearer, more honest sense of self. Don’t be the person who deludes themselves to serenity but wonderingly keeps finding themselves wound up in misery. 

2. Talk to someone not involved.
People involved in a conflict have already developed their own opinion on the issue–making it hard for you to fully express yourself in fear of repudiation. Talking to someone unbiased allows you to fully gather your thoughts aloud without this fear. Though they might not get all the sides, they can give you advice for yourside. From there, it is up to you to interpret their guidance and apply it to everything you know about what happened. Sometimes, all someone needs is a friend to let them vent out too– you will find a lot of anger and frustration released just by talking and discussing.

3. Ignore your hatred.
Nothing is more temperamental and short lived than hate and disgust. When people hate someone, they tend to naturally avoid them. Reasonable human beings understand that most conflict is best be avoided. If you are a type of person who is aggressively violent and catalatic, you probably find yourself in many dangerous situations much due to your offensive tactics–and you need to grow up. Do you see most adults arm wrestling and hitting each other over the heads with chairs because they are angry at each other? No. And if this happens, obviously, there is serious consequences. When something makes you angry, your always the angriest the moment it happens, descending. Life has no time for grudges. Hatred is an honest, natural emotion–but it is a barrier that blocks everyones path with foolish decisions to getting on with their lives.
4. Tie up loose ends.
In lost causes, most things are said and done. But, if for example, you attend the same school or work at the same place, meetings and accidental bump-ins result in awkward and very uncomfortable circumstances. Work something out with these people–things left unsaid are things said everytime you look into each other’s eyes. 

5. Plan for the future.
Things are done. The feelings, the thoughts, and the emotional value is still there, however. When big break ups and fall-outs occur, your heart and mind are often on overdrive of the predicament. One way to stop mulling on the past is to start planning for the future. Look up. Look at all the things you can do in your life, all the people you can now spend time with now that there is nothing left for you to give to them. Becoming lost in the past makes the roads unclear for the future, and sadly it happens to many of us.

6. Be alone for a while.
Solitude is often one of the best tools for self discovery. Be alone for a while. Read a book. Go on a walk. Play some video games. Just enjoy and observe life. Explore your hobbies and interests. In abusive and detrimental relationships, people often find they have lost their sense of self during it, because of the influences the other person administered. There is no shame in what you like and what you do in your free time as long as it’s not hurting others. Don’t let anyone tell you what you can and can not do with yourself.

7. Live your life.

After many years, feelings of anger and hurt dissipate. You’ve moved on with your life, they’ve moved on with theirs. Nostalgically, you might find yourself comparing and contrasting the way things were compared to now. We learn to forget the things people say and do to us, but we never can learn how to forget how they made us feel. Wounds heal. Time is short and it goes by fast. By living your life, you continue to seperate these events day by day until you don’t even think about it anymore. Living your life, as happily and truly as you can, is the ultimate step to letting go. "

Thanks, past me.

coffee break

Pajama Dance

People keep blogging about other people wearing pajamas to school.

The only thing I have to say to that is: why the fuck do you care. 

Normally I wouldn't deem this with a 400 word post, but I'm also a little bit desperate and I have to pop out like five more of these babies before Ayer's notices the lack of posts and their sub-par quality.

But really, this topic is somewhat relevant. "No. Just no," both posts ordered. How about, it's actually really none of my business but I'm going to tell people how they can and can't live their lives because for some reason having an opinion on this topic gives me authority to impose my personal ideas down onto them, even though they have not made any personal attack on me nor have asked me for my opinion. 

Now, I understand the importance of dressing nice and presenting your self correctly in the appropriate situations and environment. Looking like you've got your shit together makes other people think you've got your shit together. Employers are more likely to pick out someone who looks nice compared to someone who wears sweats in a job interview because it shows that the person took the time to look decent--a sign of respect and consideration of their opinion towards you.

But I also don't think that there is any place for you to tell other people what to do. People aren't ignorant--they understand their social expectations and the appropriate outfit decisions depending on their situation. Just because somehow dresses how you don't want them to doesn't mean you can make them stop. You have your own philosophy on life, they have theirs, and are probably just as content with theirs as you are with yours. And their probably not being dickheads about it, running around telling other people that they have to wear pajama pants simply because they do.

People's clothes are a faucet of expression. Pajama pants say: I don't care. And what's wrong with that? Maybe they don't. You don't know. You can judge a person on their appearance, but if you judge solely on that, then I feel sorry for you. The best people are always hard to find.

I understand that there is some good intention in their efforts, but like the Jehovah Witnesses that roam around the suburbs, trying to save as many souls as they possibly can with the Word of Jehovah, there good intention is simply unwanted. Unless someone asks you for your opinion, it's generally best---smart----to keep it to yourself.

Live your own life. You make your own choices. Why do you care about what other people are doing if it's not affecting you? I understand in group efforts, where they are trying to make a good impression, that's different, because such a decision is not singular. But does someone in pajama pants make your outfit any worse? Is it really going to ruin your day? Only if you make it. Jesus why do people even care. Having an opinion or a judgment on someone for their outfit is perfectly OK, but when you're on the crusade to ban fucking pajama pants, you care far too much.

Instead of worrying about what other people are wearing....why don't you worry about yourself! There, problem solved, and 556 words done.

Under pressure

Junior year is commonly the hardest year for high school students. It's when the race for college truly picks up. You've got your PSAT, SAT, ACT, National Honor Society, college visits, and scholarship opportunities to start worrying about. You've got your sports, clubs, and grades to worry about. You've got your job, family, and friends to worry about. It's really loaded on this year, and it's almost impossible to find a balance, especially when you weigh in the acts of god and the unavoidable, like car accidents or sickness or losing friends.

It's hard to find space just to breathe.

The other day my dad handed me my National Honor Society application and I almost started crying. I was already knee-deep in AP homework and cleaning the house and getting ready for school the next. Another application, another day, but it managed to worm into the places where I shove the crap I don't know how to deal with, that fear of never amounting to anything, of being a disappointment--- not good enough not good enough not good enough---but I shoved it back into its place before it could well up and get the best of me, cause me to lose everything that I had barely been keeping together. I didn't cry. I didn't kick and scream, even though I desperately wanted to. No doors were slammed, no feet pounded out the door in frustration and humiliation.

Because we're all under pressure right now. My problems are no more important than anyone else's. I don't have any right to stomp out when things get tough, when I feel like I'm fishtailing out of the fucking road. I guess I'm growing up; I guess I'm learning my place. But these things I'm doing right now are important. No one else is responsible for your own failures---but they're also not responsible for your successes. And that's hard to remember, especially when you're young, when you're inexperienced, when you're so damn scared because each step you're taking feels like one more to a cliff.

It is so much easier to blame others when you're under pressure. When people are just there. Growing up means taking credit for your choices, good and bad. When you start to do that, you get a little stronger--and the pressure is a little easier to bear. It makes it easier to lift up instead of feeling like you're just squeezing through.

You've seen what happens in nature when things are under pressure. Some are flattened and destroyed, but the most valuable things can come out over time and pressure---diamonds and oil. If that's not a lesson from mother nature, I don't know what is.

We're being pressed down so tight right now. It takes a lot of grit and gumption to get through. Sometimes you're going to have to take things with your very teeth if you want it.

I want it.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Death of Style

Yesterday I was at a conference for IHSPA. One of the speaker's was Casey Lynch, Editor in Chief at IGN. He talked about how to make it as a writer. He had six main points, but I can only remember three, but that's probably because they were the most important.
  • Go to college---but don't become them.
  • Read.
  • Make yourself memorable.
He stressed the importance of individuality and impact. Make youself memorable, he'd said, do something that makes people react to you, grabs them through the wall of apathy and gets them to feel. Go to college, learn, but don't become just another formal drone-- keep what is inherit to you still you. And of course, read, because a writer who doesn't read is the same as the athlete who doesn't exercise.

I've been thinking about this a lot.

In journalism, there is a set style that all writer's must learn and be apt pupils of. There are different ways to write on-the-spot, investigative, and features in the most objective and interesting way possible. There are rules for how quotes are attributed and how transitions must work. God, don't even get me started on the lead. The lead is the live-or-die of any good story, but there is only so much flexibility between the rigid columns of the rulebook.

I've been thinking about this a lot.

Go to college. Read. Make yourself memorable.

I'm at the point in my life where I finally have everything I want: I'm making my own decisions, for myself. And that's scary as hell. Do people know me? I should never be placed in the power to make these decisions. Saturday is PSAT, which is the entryway to National Merit Scholar---scholarships. Moneymoneymoney. It's all coming down to college, and I don't even have half idea of where I'm going (I delete all the emails that come in my inbox, I burn all the letters in my mailbox at home).

We're not adults, we're not children. We're on the precipice of both, in between.

I've been thinking about this a lot.

So I want to be a writer, but I'm at the crossroads of what kind. I am---secure when I am reading, breathing when I am writing. It's a shame to feel so good and natural about something that has no place for you in it's world. I am not a good writer and a poor critique. What I can hope for is to stick to the journalistic style, and go to college and learn their way of writing.

Make yourself memorable. And that's where I'm at a fault. I find myself censoring my original writing a lot because I don't know what it's going to do. Like anyone else whose ever struggled as a writer, I do not know my voice yet. Like anyone else whose ever struggled as a writer, I am not encouraged to do so---how can anyone say there is when we are so pressed to write in one style over another?

I've been thinkin about this a lot.

I feel like it's pretty hard to develop your own style, and I guess that comes with the business. But I want to start actually putting my stuff out there. Not just some paper that I think will get me easy points. I'm done with people telling me, 'no, you did this wrong', because they don't get my style. I'm tired of being scared to write in my own voice.

It's time for a revival.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

If you start a sentence

with "I'm not racist but..." or "This may sound racist but..." There is a probability of approx. 123497348234% chance you should shut the hell up. How does that even sound good in your head? 

Saying "I'm not racist but..." does not make whatever following comment more or less racist. It does not make you more or less racist. Saying "I'm not racist but..." is just a way for people to set up their incredibly racist comments while shielding/protecting themselves from the idea and fact that they are actually incredibly racist.

The best example right now could be the racist comments in politics about Obama. There are so many people---whether you, or even they acknowledge it or not, that do this all the time.

Twitter is the worst offender.
NOOOOOOOOOOO. For anyone who says that a person who makes comments like these isn't being racist, doesn't discriminate against Obama because of his color, they need to do some serious re-evaluating.

Think before you speak.

coffee break

I think a lot

about writing. I'm not a very good writer, but I'm definitely not the worst. I hate almost everything I've ever written, which my mom says is good. That all the best writer's do, because that's how they make progress, knowing they've got to be better. Sometimes I don't know if I can. 

I actually like these blog posts a lot. In a way, they're almost therapeutic, getting my thoughts out into the air, having to actually think when I write my argument. I like how sometimes I'll start with the opinion at one end of the argument, and as I do my research and try to form my opinion it actually changes by the end of the article, because I've actually taken the time to think about the choice I'm making on something. I suppose it's enlightening. It certainly is critical to me, as a writer, as a person.

The hardest thing about writing is actually doing it. Ideas will come and go through out the day, but it takes an insurmountable determination to start penning things down. You probably know it. Doing something that feels impossible and then laughing when you're down. In athletics they say the time you should work the hardest is when you feel at you're absolute weakest, because that is when the training matters most, where it will kick in. It's true about writing.

I don't know where I stand as a writer compared to my peers. I don't know where I stand at all, and I'm either not comfortable enough with having someone critiquing my work or the people I actually do feel comfortable enough don't have enough experience/expertise to validate my writing. I love tough editors because they get you places. The thing about praise and success is that it gets you nowhere, builds this sense of security that is hard to get out of because it's safe---so you never move on to greater things.

I remember I won this contest for the Love My Library Contest. I won a NOOK, which was awesome, but I was also really embarrassed. I consider it one of my poorer essays. And I won, and was lavished with all this unmitigated praise and congratulations and I felt like such a fraud because the essay was actually pretty terrible. And then I had to read it at this groundbreaking ceremony downtown, and I just felt bad. Resist the urge to publicly apologize bad, and I ran off the stage when everyone was clapping. Oh man, and then people personally congratulated me after, and I did not deserve that. I smiled and thanked them, but inside I was handling it badly.

As a writer, it's not as though I don't like winning. But only when I feel like it's deserved. And how the hell am I supposed to know when something is deserved when I can't even honestly tell how good something I write is? Because this is important to me. I want to be a better writer.

Also, scholarships, which pretty sums up my life right now.


Does anyone besides thirteen year old pubescent girls, aspiring show choir geeks and nostalgic fortysomething mothers wanting to re-live their dreams watch Glee nowadays? I mean, I totally used to watch the first season, but after that I was just kind of done....

But yesterday was one of those days where you cook yourself some ramen and chill in sweatpants and watch that weeks TIVO with your mom. The last episode had like ten main couples break up because they were going separate ways and such. And while it was a fun time to remember that I actually do enjoy some of their covers, my sisters claim that Ryan Murphy (the creator) is a genius is pretty far-out.

For one thing, for a show that takes pride in its ethnic diversity, Glee is surprisingly racist. An article from Cracked, The 5 Most Baffling Racist Shows On TV Right Now puts it best:
"But then it was pointed out to me that every non-white character is such a non-white character that it's like the producers had actually just come here from an albino world and were so taken with the novelty of people who weren't white that they had no time to look into or care about their cultures at all. Hence the two Asian characters on the show have the same last name. The Jew's last name is Ben Israel and he's as sexually deranged as Gladstone. The Latina cheerleader is actually named Santana Lopez, possibly because they had to cut Conchita Luisa Mexicasa out of the script. There's even actually an Irish exchange student who is immediately believed to be a leprechaun."---Ian Fortey
 The bad part is that he's not even exaggerating. And what's worse--is that this show is a recidivist of perpetuating the same stereotypes. Why? Because simply there are no new character types. They simply take one character, copy and paste their personalities and beliefs onto another actor, and change their name. Take Quinn and Kitty. They could be sisters. Both blonde, religious advocates, cheerleaders who don't practice what they preach and are overly cruel. Even the show calls her a "young Quinn Fabray, except that she's not pregnant."

Glee 36-becca-02 4391 v2kva.jpg
Even the fucking background.

The writer's make little to no attempt at trying to create new people, simply sticking with their stock characters. And all of them are extremely one dimensional. And since I've mentioned Quinn, let's talk about her a little more. Quinn was one of the most disappointing characters I've ever watched on TV in my whole life. In season 1, she gets knocked up by the really hot dude with the mohawk, Puck, unfortunately while she is still dating the school's most popular jock, Finn. I mean they sing it out a lot, but Quinn had this really beautiful character development in the first season as she is forced to make the decision on whether or not to keep her baby, while handling getting kicked out of her house, lying to Finn that he's the father (who she was living with) and deciding to give the baby to her teacher's wife. And the whole falling to bottom of the high school caste system. We really got to watch her grow into this mature, kind, compassionate woman, who became more caring and accepting--almost wise--as she got further along in her pregnancy. And then she had the baby and her entire character development was thrown out the window. She completely reverted to her prepregnancy days. I understand that it could be rationalized as her way of trying to regain her life back and continue the way she had before, but Quinn had learned shit. And you just don't drop those kind of life lessons after you pop a kid out when you're like 16 years old. You just don't. 

And that's a problem. While a lot of characters did develop in more mature ways from the first to last one, the strongest they came through was the first where everyone had to set aside their differences and learn how to accept one another. While the whole breaking the system is so unoriginal, they pulled through in such a powerful way that actually made you support them.

So Glee just got more and more popular, causing the spin-off The Glee Project, which is where a bunch of other young singing/dancing/quadruple threats of various disabilities and backgrounds (for diversity) compete against each other for a position on the show.....which just shows that the telecast thinks it's more important than it actually is. And so these kids would win and be entered on the show, literally just written-in, and it was always poorly (and offensively---remember the Irish kid who everyone made really juvenile Leprechaun and lucky charm jokes?) and the characters would be there for half a season with no real purpose to the overall plot, sometimes even the small subplots and it was all just really terrible.

So they have all these throw-away characters but there clasping with a death grip on their favorite characters who have already graduated, Rachel and Kurt, who moved to New York city to follow their dreams of Broadway. It's so cliche and painful, and it just makes me want to tear my eyes out. They should have either created a new series that followed all of the cast instead of just focusing on two of the old ones and footnoting a few others, and creating a whole new cast which no one really cares about. OR they could have followed the Degrassi style, where each generation gets their own focus, building on to each other.

So I'm pretty disappointed. The show started off really strongly, and it should of ended strongly, too. There are some other things I could talk about, like Santana's lesbian arc and the whole strange school funding thing and Sue Sylvester situation, but I thing I'm done with Glee. I'm just done.

A note on gender pricing

Little-known fact that ladies pay more on the same thing as men. It's called gender pricing, and the simple reason the same stuff for girls that costs more than guys is simply because companies understand that women will pay more, for less. It's because more so than men, simple toiletries and beauty products are almost an requirement to be a women in this society.

A 2010 study by the Consumer Reports estimate that women could be paying up to 50% on basic products then men. Items included shampoo, razors, and deodorant. The argument by the companies is that women's products have more scent, specialization, and last longer. Here is a basic chart: (He paid, she paid)
Chart showing that women pay more for similar products purchased by both genders
What the CR concluded:
"Bottom line
Try ignoring gender labeling and buy the cheaper version. "You're paying for the perceived value of the package," says Allan Gorman, owner of Brandspa, a company that helps make brands more desirable. "Can you really tell the difference? Most of us can't."
Though while many states (California being the first in 1996) have bans against gender pricing on certain things like haircuts and dry cleaners, there is no overarching federal law in the US that bans such discrimination---the only law is on jobs and housing. In one article by it was revealed that in certain countries, like New Zealand, the unfair pricing stays the same.
"One salon charged women from $75 to $107 for a cut and blowdry, and men from $59 to $79. Another charged women from $85 to $130 for a cut and style, but men only $75 to $90, and a third $62 for a woman and $44 for a man."---Sometimes it's hard to be a woman, Elle Hunt.
These subtle differences add up. According to Forbes, gender pricing could cost about 1,400 dollars more than men in hidden fees and extra costs.

But the most disturbing of all is that woman pay more on health insurance--that's right--for simply being a woman. Not for maternity reasons, either. The practice is called gender rating and it's in use simply because insurance companies understand that woman go to the doctor more often than men.

Man, I just want to shave my legs. I use men's razors and lady deodorant. I don't want to have to pay an extra amount on the same stuff boys use just because I'm a girl. And I definitely shouldn't be paying more for my health insurance simply because women statistically use it more. Isn't that a little backwards? So we have to buy more even though we're paid less? It's tough, and it's understood, but there aren't a lot of people trying to change anything about it. But I guess women have always been fighting an uphill battle, and what the hell, we've made it this far, haven't we?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

coffee break

Remember how

I posted earlier about how more and more I've been catching in on all the discussions on politics? Yeah, it's just getting worse. I didn't think it was possible, but the arguments that I usually eavesdrop in during the middle of class have actually been deteriorating. I'm actually kind of disappointed.

This is one of those blogs that's so late that I don't know what to do about it. So I'm just going to ramble? To be fair, I've read most of these other kids' blogs, and mostly they come in diary rantings or consumer reviews. Which, as far as excuses go, is a poor one, but I'm desperate. I need to get to 400 hundred words and simply by stating that I'm getting there.

But that doesn't mean I haven't been writing! Just mostly fiction, which does nothing I suppose for an AP Comp class, because the entire point of these blogs is to help build research skills and argument building. Which I don't think everyone has caught on yet? Anyway I try not to post an argument that I haven't fully rounded yet or at least have three sources to help support evidence. That's because while my standards are actually very low, I haven't succumbed to the pressure to write about what kinds of tennis shoes to wear yet and why...Aren't most arguments supposed to beget from conflict? Mostly I see a lot of blogs doing the whole 4 out of 5 stars or whatever.

This is literally an entire blog post of me just rambling. I'd say I'm sorry, but I'm really not. I'm tired. I drank a cream soda and now I have heartburn. I'm being a complete brat and deciding that my problems are more important than everyone else. At least I'm self-aware? Who knows.

Oh my god, I just checked word count and this thing is still only at 300 words. WHY. Can I write about how excited I am about the new Supernatural season premiering tomorrow? Because I so am. Season GR8 HAS RISEN. I'm excited but nervous, because last season was done really really realllyyyy poorly. Boring plot line, throw away characters, a lot of plot holes and loose ends. AND THERE WAS SO MUCH POTENTIAL BECAUSE CAS WAS A LEVIATHAN FOR LIKE TWO EPISODES and there could have been such character development and drama but instead the writer's just dropped it like a hot potato when the potato WAS GOLD.

I'm going to go elsewhere...because this train don't stop.

Monday, October 1, 2012


I'm really picky when it comes to what I read. I'm a snob, because I've spent the past 16 years reading every and anything that passed through my hands no matter how poorly written and juvenile it was. I loved Twilight when I was in sixth grade, Jesus. But the older I grow--and the more well-read---the more liable I am to kick out a book by its cover alone. To be fair, though....
2011 YA covers by color

The covers have been pretty telling.
Look closely. See any books that have been recently noted or significant in our culture? See any that don't look like they could have a common plot line? That's because there aren't.

The problem, as with any sub-culture, is that it's all about marketing. Publishing houses buys what sells, and little to nothing else. Remember that huge explosion of the vampire/paranormal romance genre after Twilight? How after The Hunger Games blew through the ceiling, all sorts of teen survival/post-apocalyptic series popped up?

As creatures of habit, when we find something we like, we prefer to stick with it then venture out and find other novels when we already have a set taste. Movie studios, TV producers, the Kardashians, Publishing houses and especially fast food chain stores know this. So the same novel gets mass-produced ten more times with minor changes in names and setting, but quintessentially the same where it matters most. God, they can't even change the cover, either. It's like the call sign.

Because a lot of these books are just...bad. Besides the whole being unoriginal as dirt thing, they're poorly written in terms of style and narrative, have weak story structure and character arcs, and tend to have lots of meaningless details that don't build character or move the plot. It hurts my brain. Like eating fruit snacks and McDonalds every day for your whole life, it just clogs the vital parts of your brain (like creativity, problem-solving, self-evaluation, moral and ethical considerations) turning it into mush. You cannot transcend what you do not know, and many of these books aren't worth knowing.

The reason Harry Potter and The Hunger Games were so popular was because they were, in contemporary literature, novel. They had interesting characters, an interesting setting for the drama to play out, and an unusual plot. While they may have succeeded from the genres before them (Think Lord of the Flies to The Hunger Games), they came together well and weren't terribly written. And they weren't like everything else that was printing at the time.

Because as much people like their easy-pleasures, they love new experiences more. What's more refreshing that an original book?