“Bad writers are bad because they stop too soon. In fact, let’s take a step back. The only quality, I think, that marks the writer as different from everyone else is simply an unwillingness to quit. Others give up when they learn writing is hard; the writer struggles on. When I sit down in front of the blank page, it’s no easier for me to fill it than anyone else. The non-writer looks at the blank page and — quite sensibly — says, ‘forget it, I’m outta here.’ But if they had to, they could put a few words down there — just like I do. Only the words wouldn’t be any good. So the non-writer gets frustrated, gives up and leaves. Me, too, I get frustrated… but I sit there, and work to make it better. Anybody who’s willing to struggle, I think, can write. The real work is to stick at it until you find the gold. To get to that funny line. To do the hard work no one else wants to do, but everyone wants to have done. To discover the great character bit, the clever story turn. Until you have it, you don’t have it. Until it’s there, it’s not there — and you need to stick at it until it is there.”
— Terry Rossario
It seems as though the only way to pull a writer out from the depths of absolute nothingness is to force a gun up to their head and tell them to write. It’s as if the stern actions from their jacked-up ridiculously terrifying action hero of a muse has the power to lift the verbal blockage that releases the most wonderful stories known to man. Why is it though that I have to force myself to write in order to overcome the mind boggling pause in my creative stream of consciousness? (more…)
In a matter of five months my life has went from incredibly depressing to surfing the skies on cloud nine, and the rapid shift in my life’s progression has left me with the strangest time-elapsing whip lash. So much has happened that at times I feel I can’t comprehend the amount I’ve accomplished in this period and, oddly enough, I feel I haven’t finished this trend of quickly occurring positive changes yet.
Recently, while sitting in my comfy office chair, located inside the Bakersfield Californian building, I was offered to cover a quick feature story on one of my old high school teachers. After getting in touch with him via email, he responded to my inquiry and agreed to be interviewed by his former student. (more…)
Cindy and I ended up pulling over and driving into a gas station for a pit stop shortly after she had informed me that she would tell me why she needed to go to Oregon. I took the keys completely out of the ignition and grabbed my wallet out of my purse leaving nothing truly valuable behind—or at least what I considered invaluable.
I stepped out of the car to run inside the little mini mart at the gas station and use the restroom, and on the way out I bought a couple bags of chips and two water bottles for the long journey north. When I did make it back to my car Cindy’s face was contorted in a way that made her seem incredibly mortified by my presence. (more…)
I was recently asked to discuss why I choose to write. This was my answer.
I was admitted into the architecture program at Cal Poly Pomona, one of the best architecture schools around, and switched my major to English with a minor in Journalism after the first year. My family, friends, and classmates thought that I was insane for switching out into such a “doomed” life path, but I wasn’t worried—that much.
I knew that if I chose a path that I was passionate about, and that I could look back on when I’m lying in my death bed, and think that with this choice, I’ve contributed to a life that I am happy with, then it wasn’t insane.
I have a passion for story telling in every medium of writing. I enjoy the conversations and information that comes out of something that I have helped to create, and I believe I can do all of this and much more through writing. (more…)
Gaze up into the dark velvet blanket of sky that is decorated with an arrangement of shimmering diamonds. What appears before you is just the front door to the rest of an entire unknown universe. The possibilities of life, other worldly knowledge and further innovation is knocking and waiting for someone to open it. Although this other world of possibilities is accessible, the door is still locked. The key lies in the minds of our future generation, and to obtain that key, we would need to support education.
It definitely makes sense to be a proponent of education. Not only does it inspire the imagination of billions of individuals, but it ignites new conversations, propels our progress as the human race forward, and it helps us create new opportunities ourselves and the ways in which we live. However, when we neglect our education system, we are in return neglecting all of those inspiring and innovative creations. (more…)
My hands hit the keyboard again and I felt as though they haven’t touched these rows of hard plastic in over twenty years. I write everyday whether the sun is shining or the cold and heavy showers of rain hurl down on top of me, but I feel as though this isn’t enough.
“I didn’t run to make history, I ran to make a difference,” said Wisconsin’s newly elected female and first openly gay person elected to the U.S. Senate, Rep. Tammy Baldwin, but it’s probably safe to say that she is on her way to make history while accomplishing her goal to make a difference.
Senator Baldwin has not only carved her place in history by being first openly gay person elected to the U.S. Senate, but she was also a part of a group of powerful women senators-elect who won seats held by men.
Democrat, and U.S. Rep., Tammy Baldwin took an open Senate seat over Republican Tommy Thompson who had served 14 years as the state’s governor and was former U.S. secretary of Health and Human Services under President George W. Bush. Republican Deb Fischer defeated Democrat Bob Kerrey, a former two-term senator from the state, for an open seat in Nebraska during 2012 election. Democrat Elizabeth Warren, a Harvard University professor whose attacks on Wall Street fueled her campaign, won her race against the Republican incumbent, Sen. Scott Brown in Massachusetts and was the first woman to represent her state in the U.S. Senate. (more…)
California university and college students–parents of those California university and college students. Remember at the beginning of this academic school year when you had to pay more tuition because of the state’s huge deficit. Well we still have the deficit but you may be receiving some of that money back in your pocket.
Busy streets filled with quickly moving cars that carried on to heavy congested traffic on the highways; it was a stark difference from the slow-paced cow-filled town back in the Central Valley. I had attempted to empty my mind and dig deeper to find myself in the wide open spaces under the bright blue country skies, but of course, any success made in this endeavor would be wiped clean with the large industrial towers grouped together in the large city.
I had about two weeks to get my online and office work schedule together before I had to start classes again. I dove right into queuing posts and writing articles before I realized that the random trip that I took to the Central Valley hadn’t really gotten rid of any of my concerns. Apparently you really couldn’t run away from your problems. (more…)
“Have you guys ever heard of the phrase ‘thinking outside of the box’?”
Everyone in the class casually nodded and some students slowly started raising their hands to answer the rhetorical question.
“Well that phrase is completely outdated,” the teacher explained. “I want you to throw it out.”
Throw what out?” an eager freshman shouted.
“The box—I want you to throw the box out,” she continued. “The phrase implies that there is a box to begin with. Your thinking should be uninhibited and not based off of any set box or form. You should have your own opinions and think about things without the thought of a box.”
I was reminded of this “thinking without a box” when I ran into a story on Bloomberg about mixed-race Americans. I thought to myself, what box do multi-raced individuals check on the Census? Why do we even have to check a box on tests and other things? And how do we get around this thinking with a box? (more…)
Eleven years ago our nation was changed forever. And as the country watched their television screens in utter shock, we stood in fear for our loved ones and when we found out that it all was intentional, we wondered why anyone would commit such an act. After the attacks on 9-11 our country has come together in the wake of a horrific event, displayed patriotism by mounting flags on car antennas and in yards all over the nation, and for a moment, showed the world what it was like to stand together as the United States. You couldn’t go anywhere after that day without running into a flag flying proudly in the wind. We covered our land from sea-to-sea in the valiant red, innocent white and our perseverant blue.
Today we still remember 9/11 honoring those that lost their lives that day.
I had stepped out of my car that night wearing my long brown cardigan draped over a tank top and some shorts. I slid my card into the gas pump and shoved the nozzle into the gas tank. I was tired, confused about my life’s recent events, and I felt lost wondering about what the hell the universe wanted me to do, and as I tilted my head back in a sigh of exhaustion, my eyes rested on a giant billboard staring right back at me.
A bushel of apples sitting behind a jar of Mott’s apple product appeared incredibly massive as it perched right behind a flood of lights pointing up at it. It looked down upon me like it was the eyes of the universe watching over the tiny gas station. I couldn’t help but ponder for a moment about my life, my insane summer, or even just about all the crazy events that have taken place in the past week and a half.
I climbed back into my car after filling up and drove down past all of the last bits of civilization into the dark and vast canyon of what seemed like the abyss. The surrounding hills looked like deep shadows overlaying the already darkened night sky, and for a moment I found my mind also pummeling its way into an abyss of thoughts. (more…)
As the summer ends and all of the academic universities begin to prepare for the new school year, the students print out their schedules for classes and pack up their last bit of luggage to be hauled along with them to campus. Many of us are searching for jobs, buying books and worrying about whether or not our financial aid will kick in on time. Completing the long list of classes for our course curriculum is always the first things on our minds (especially now with all of the educational budget cuts) but should all of these things be the only focus on our minds? What about internships?
Interning for your intended field of business has its many benefits, but many of these internship positions that students obtain are not paid. Students are often left debating on whether or not the internship is worth the lack of time they could have been using at a paid position, and they pass on internship opportunities unless it is absolutely required of them.
Those people, unfortunately, are missing out on the benefits of an internship. (more…)
I found myself waiting inside of a fancy waiting room with plush brown couches and leather armchairs for one of the first of many interviews that I would have this summer. I held on to my resume and pulled my skirt down a little to look a little more professional.
“We’ll be with you in a moment Jasmine,” a small lady said hiding behind her massive desk. “The store manager said that she would be up in a moment.”
“Okay, thank you,” I responded.
I waited there for a about fifteen more minutes before a very tall woman with her hair slicked back tightly into a bun emerged and called me into the conference room. We exchanged greetings and then dove right into the interview.
I knew retail like the back of my hand. Every store was almost exactly the same so I wasn’t worried about nabbing the sales associate position in maybe the women’s clothing department or something. I answered the typical retail questions like a champ and really won her over until she took a better look at my resume. (more…)
We grew up dreaming about becoming fireman, policeman, doctors, and princesses and when it was our time to graduate high school, start our first jobs, and pick a major for college we all derped and freaked out. When it came to our deepest and darkest desires we all knew what we wanted, but when the big bad world came swooping down dumping several doses of reality all over our Power Ranger lunchboxes we were forced to be practical… and eat our veggies.
From the time I was eight I knew that I was going to write a book one day. At the same time, however, I was also planning on being a princess-astronaut-actress who occasionally sold her art at fancy galleries. The fact that I also wanted to rule the world was totally doable for me at the time, but of course I grew older and someone told me that was called being a Fascist dictator. (more…)
I was getting pretty restless with the whole get up, merge into heavy Los Angeles traffic, go to one of two of my internships, and then come back home at the end of the day routine. It felt humdrum and repetitive and I really didn’t feel like this was my last summer vacation. At least that’s how I felt until my day out with a friend.
I accepted an invitation to maybe go to a museum for the afternoon since we were meeting up in the middle of the week. I gladly accepted and worked my way over a few city blocks after my second internship to where my friend planned on us meeting up.
We spent an hour or two getting lost in an art museum while pondering possible meanings behind the works and tried our best to sneak in a few pictures with our camera phones before leaving. We ended up leaving our cars parked illegally in the museum’s parking lot and walked down to a pretty cool vegan restaurant and ate the most delicious meals period. We savored juicy vegan meatballs, and drank their naturally sweet tasting passion fruit tea and tasty a grilled chicken to die for. We also saw a heftier Robert Pattinson look alike. (more…)
After watching this video the other day I’ve realized something about the readers of this blog and me. For some reason we all love it when I exaggerate (for the most part). I literally do nothing during the day except for going to work, or school and then I go home and hang out with friends. Most of the rest of my time is spent writing all about the mundane things that I do and then posting it on the internet.
I’ve written a post about watching cat videos for Pete’s sake, and people still enjoy coming back to visit my blog. It’s entertaining at times to read all of my posts about nothing, but I worry now that it affects my relationships IRL (in real life) as well. Everything with me is “life or death,” “do this now or the world will end,” and “my situation is the worst situation in the world and I’m going to die right now.” Nothing is ever just moderately normal or just boring with me, and I’m not sure if that’s because I’m within that twenty to twenty-five-year-old last bit of brain developing stage or because that’s just me.
I take stories about picking up someone’s lunch at Wendy’s and I turn it into some disastrous catastrophe that ruined my life, or I talk about my experiences with watching training videos at my department store job and I turn it into something that sounds completely ridiculous. A planned trip to Oregon with friends has gotten stretched into an epic tale about life and love, and when I do get around to writing a completely made up story no one seems to respond to it. I suppose it’s something about my exaggerated life that draws people in and keeps them coming back for more. (more…)
The June Gloom had faded away making room for an incredibly hot summer and I was sweating like a dammed person in the bowels of hell as I sat hopelessly lost in my car. I was too cheap to turn on the air conditioning in the 100 degree weather, due to my lack of job situation, and I was a vegetarian on a mission to find a Baconator from Wendy’s.
The interns from the first internship took turns gathering lunch orders and picking up fast food dishes all around town for the individuals at the office. Some of the places were right across the street or just around the corner from the building, and many of the staff members ordering from those places had simple orders. They tried their best to order food from the same place so that the interns didn’t have to run around as much, but other times the interns were lost in a sea of lunch orders that were scattered over multiple neighborhoods.
I guess I picked the short straw for that day, because I was sent out to get a Baconator for one of my bosses.’ I didn’t know this until after I had gotten back from my journey, but Wendy’s was incredibly hard to find and that it took a while for all of the interns to know exactly where it was. (more…)
Sometimes thoughts and ideas change. Sometimes they grow and shift from one way to another; and sometimes they even shift their way back again. The way we think and what we believe comes as a result of a complex construction of your environment, upbringing, experiences, and practically everything else that you come into contact with in the world. As we grow older and build new memories with the various pieces of life that make us who we are, sometimes the thoughts we gathered in order to answer complex questions evolve and modify, and that’s completely okay.
You won’t ever know every single piece of knowledge that has ever been leaked out into the world because you are not every single person on the planet. One person can never walk in everyone shoes because they are just one single person, but you can definitely try your best. Even super geniuses and the most adventurous travelers can’t see or know it all. The flow of knowledge that comes into the world never ceases, and the range of different perspectives never stops accumulating. (more…)
I had no lunch, I was dehydrated and I had time in my second trip to the store to think about my confusing life. It was on my third run to the same store that day that all my problems that had been piling up made me snap.
“Can you go out one more time to get those again,” said one of the people in charge of the interns.
“ARE YOU SERIOUS?! ARE YOU FUCKING SERIOUS?!” I’m going to kill everyone. I said under my breath.
“Never mind! Never mind!” I saw her face shift into shock. (more…)
It was on the first day of my second internship where I was reminded of the other reason of why I took on both of these internships. The second internship was located in the heart of LA where all of the famous fashion stores and Hollywood stars would set up shop. I probably only had to drive about twenty or thirty miles or so to get to the office, but because I had to join the massive migration of cars traveling at the speed of a garden snail, it took me about an hour to end up in my overpriced parking structure.
Subtly nods, polite handshakes, and names were exchanged as I tried to settle into the new environment. The work that they had me do wasn’t as nearly stressful, and the fact that I didn’t have to stay there as long as the first internship made it feel a lot more relaxing. I went through the day quietly minding my own business until one of the girls who worked their invited me out for drinks with the rest of the people at the office. I accepted the offer in hopes of getting to know everyone there a little better, and decided to stay a few extra hours until we all made our way over to the popular Mexican restaurant.
Rounds of margaritas and quesadillas were served, and as I snacked happily on my free chips and salsa that sat in front of me at my table, I listened to the work conversations turn into after-hour rants. (more…)
I was sitting at my very uncomfortable chair inside my nice freezing refrigerator-of-an-office at one of my two internships when I thought to myself, ‘what am I doing here?’ It just hit me like a ton of bricks. I mean yes, I had applied to the position and added on another intense internship, along with my job at a department store, but I couldn’t figure out for the life of me why I would make a schedule so ridiculous and soul-sucking for myself. Was I secretly some masochistic office-space-loving intern that wanted to die by extreme stress and exhaustion, or I did I really think that this would help me get a real job later on and further my career?
I couldn’t tell you. My mind was foggy from working nonstop, and I could have sworn that my limbs were going numb in response to the near frostbite that my toes were developing. I sat there thinking about how I had gotten to this very spot and why I should actually stay here. My mind drifted outside to the warm rays of sunshine gently dusting the sidewalks just outside the office, and I thought about just packing up my things and getting into my car. (more…)