Super Sweet Blogging Award

I went on the computer for the first time in days just a few minutes ago (no, I wasn’t avoiding y’all) and was pleasantly surprised to find that I was nominated for the Super Sweet Blogging Award by Storytime With Buffy. Thanks a bunch, Buffy. The whole thing reminds me of tags on Youtube. Youtubers will complete a number of questions and then tag a few people that they want to see answer the same questions. But in this case it’s also someone bravely calling out to you in the darkness of cyberspace and saying, “You’re awesome!”. So I thought I would spread the love.

The Super Sweet Blogging Award

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Being nominated means I have some responsibility.

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Answer 5 Super Sweet questions. These can be found down below.
  3. Include the Super Sweet Blogging Award in your blog post.
  4. Nominate a baker’s dozen (13) other deserving bloggers. (Pssst…some do less and nothing bad happens.)
  5. Notify your Super Sweet nominees on their blog.

 

5 SUPER SWEET QUESTIONS

1. Cookies or Cake? Both? Cookies. I can eat enough cookies to burst my stomach, but cake? Not so much. It normally makes me feel sick. Just thinking about the birthdays from my childhood, with dry confetti cake covered in sugar icing, gives me a migraine. (Cheesecake is an exception).
2. Chocolate or Vanilla? If I ever have to choose between the two I’ll probably go for chocolate. Chocolate cake, chocolate milk, chocolate shakes. But if I want to change it up a bit with things that are stereotypically chocolate, I’ll have vanilla.
3. Favorite Sweet Treat? Ice cream. Or anything cold and sweet for that matter. I especially like pralines and cream ice cream in a waffle cone.
4. When Do You Crave Sweet Things The Most? When I’ve only been eating vegetables for the past week. It works the other way around to.
5. Sweet Nick Name? Pumpkin Girl. I don’t know, ask my mom.

 

NOMINEES FOR THIS SUPER SWEET BLOGGING AWARD

 

 

So I know the instructions allowed for less but I only have five. Hehe. Oh well, these bloggers are awesome so check them out!

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The Novel Writing Spark

There’s a spark we writers feel while writing stories. That spark is the same one that causes us to write for hours on end, word after word, without pause. That’s the same spark that makes us grin like an idiot, laughing at our own jokes while we read over our work. It’s the one that throws us into a our novel so far that there’s no way out.

I started the second book to my fantasy series a week or two ago. The spark was there. Or I thought it was there. But every time I read it I winced. It was fast paced, to a point where it was sloppy and the characters were bland. Where was that spunk that was ever present in Morag, the main character, while I wrote the first book? Why was Emily, the girl destined to be Morag’s best friend, already joined at the hip with the protagonist in the first few pages? 

I needed to start over. That’s hard. You feel like you’re abandoning a baby because it’s ugly. But I did. I tweaked the outline, throwing away months of the preconceived notion that Morag and Emily would be friends from the start. Seconds later I started fresh and I’ve been writing the whole day.

We become awfully attached and even defendant of our books. It seems wrong to abandon them because we don’t feel the spark. But I felt that leaving my book to wallow around in the middle ground of okay was a crime in itself. I was cheating it out of it’s full potential. So I pulled myself together, set the original draft aside, and now the spark is there. What about you? Do you feel that spark? And how do you cope when you know it isn’t there?

Novel Writing

Recently I finished writing the first draft of my first novel. It’s 185 pages handwritten and barely 100 pages typed, but it’s probably the biggest accomplishment a 14 year old girl could make. It took me awhile to start the second, mostly because I didn’t know what was going to happen. Every time I started to write the intro to the new story it would melt slowly into meaningless walks in the park and morning routines. It wasn’t until yesterday that I actually sat down and planned out what would happen in the first place. I never thought I had it in me to plan a book from start to finish like that. Afterwards I started writing once again, this time with a goal in mind. What about you, fellow novel writers? Do you like to know where you’re going while writing a new book, or do you prefer the adventure of not having a clue in the world as to what may happen?

Surfing the Web, Otherwise Known as Procrastination

Let me give you an idea of what the weather is like outside. Hailing. Hailing so loud and so hard that I can barely hear myself think. I kid you not, these ice balls of death are the size of marbles. Luckily Alexandra (my sister) and I arrived home before the storm hit. Wait? Did it stop? It sounds like it. People are emerging from the shelter of stranger’s houses and walking on their disgruntled way. 

I’m sorry I haven’t been able to post in a few days. Exams are upon me and I have to study. Or, I was trying to study. Out of my five classes for this term we are either at an extreme low level of work because all we’re doing is review, or the opposite, working our asses off to finish off whatever we have to before exams. Or, even worse, actually doing an exam. I woke up more tired than I usually am because I couldn’t fall asleep (I’ll explain later). I trudged to school in my new haircut (quite nice if I may say so myself). Then after half an hour of my friends gasping at my new bob, I started my first class, English. The English exam runs from Monday until Friday for a total of five hours. That’s five hours too many if you ask me, especially at the very end of the year when I’m ready to quit everything. The topic of the exam is entertainment, and how media desensitizes us. 

A few hours later I did my last Geography test, which I was barely awake through. But before we started scribbling wildly at our bubble sheet Mrs. Zix explained what we’d be doing for the next three days, a project worth ten percent of our grade. Yippee.

And now I’m home, ready to pass out. I can remember about ten thousand things I should be doing right now, but first I need to tell you about yesterday.

The started off with me making my mom coffee, because she said that she would cut my hair when she woke up. So she got up and a few hours later she took a good five inches off my previous do. I haven’t had it this short since when I was learning how to print. Dang, I looked fine.

Next I read the book Anne (my friend) lent me. It’s the Darkest Powers Trilogy by Kelly Armstrong. It’s quite good, but it gives me strange dreams if I read it before bed. Later I went on the computer, completely ignoring the fact that I had a test to study for. I checked my e-mail, because my friend Cindy still has my book from half a year ago and I want it back. She didn’t reply but I did find something else. It was a message from Stumble Upon. I signed up for it years ago. My password dated as far back as I could remember. So I started stumbling through the web, finding the most interesting things. Like a website where there was a play list for every situation and a site that made hipster text posts easy

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 But I also found a website full of the freakiest urban legends that drifted around the internet. This I will not link to, because it was scarring. One depicted the story of a Sponge Bob episode where Squidward committed suicide. Then I tried to go to sleep. Then I tried harder. And then I gave up and went downstairs for some tea. Then I read a book about vegetable gardens, went back upstairs, and still couldn’t sleep. When I woke up I felt my soul was crying for the bed like a lost lover. 

Well at least I’ll learn never to do that again. That’s the good thing about mistakes, you seldom repeat them after you’ve tasted the consequences. For instance. I’ve lost half of my study notes for Geography because I’m so disorganized. I’ll make sure to keep them all in the same place next year, but in the meantime, I’d better go find them. 

Baseball and Friends

Today was supposed to be senior skip day, the day where all the seniors pack up their things and head to the beach. I don’t know what the big deal is over it, but some schools in the city have made severe punishments to keep kids from participating in it. My school took a different approach. They called off the afternoon and made a baseball game between the teachers and the seniors.

My friends and I, Anne, Jacinda, Esther, Jericho, and a few others who came and went, sat in the rickety old bleachers and cheered. Jacinda, Anne and I are the sort of people who cheer for everything and everyone, singing to the songs and fist pumping. Esther is the one who says, “Who are these people? Do you know these people? I don’t know these people,” and shakes her head. She’s tiny and bony, less than half my weight, and walks with dancers poise, like she may take flight at any moment. Anne is loud and the most immature fifteen year old I have ever met. She had a baby face and it’s often red from laughter as she tries to make Esther punch herself (stop punching yourself, why are you punching yourself?). Jacinda is a year older than us, but she’s from the Philippines where kids go to school a year after Canadians. She’s sweet and she loves books and movies. She’s also one of those girls who isn’t afraid to talk to people or be close to them. She screams for absolutely no reason much of the time, which generates many perplexed glances toward our general area. Jericho is smart, very smart. He’s also shy. But he’s very nice.

I spent the baseball game with them. Before the game Jacinda drove us back in her mom’s van because she has a learners permit. It was strange. I’ve never been in a car with a driver who’s younger than 30. In a year I’ll be doing the exact same thing. 

There was a hot dog eating contest between two homeroom teachers because they were tied for points. It was a bit sickening to watch, seeing as I’ve been vegetarian my whole life, but there were sardines on one of them so I wanted to see the reaction of the person who had to eat it. The crowd was so big that I could only see one person stuffing their face, but I’m sure it would have been priceless.

The game ended half an hour before the end of the school day. Jacinda left and Anne, Jericho, Esther and I made our separate ways home. Anne lives five minutes away in the condos parallel to the school, Esther goes to a bus stop outside of an old folks home, and Jeri bikes. I have to walk to my sisters middle school and take the bus with her from there, then it’s a twenty minute ride from the suburbs to downtown and a ten minute walk home. 

We live in an okay area, not too bad, but not too good. There are people who walk around in high end, fashionable clothing, and there are those few who look dirty and walk funny. But my neighborhood is green, that’s what I like about it. And the smell of old trees, moist soil, and gardens in a windy city like mine is always sweet. The bleeding hearts are blooming and the perennials are emerging. The trees arc over the street and leaves splay over parked cars. It’s starting to feel like summer.

Do You Think This Is Infected?

As far as I know, every teenager of this generation knows someone who cuts. In fact, self harm is so common that it doesn’t come as a surprise to me when I see someone’s arms slashed with fresh slices. It’s cruel reality, to live in a place where physical pain distracts you from the real pain inside you. But how would I know? I’m fortunate enough to have never done it myself.

I have a friend who was once very close to me, let’s call her Flora. Actually, I still like to believe that we’re quite close. But let’s be real, the only time I see her is in class. But it’s come to our attention that we don’t spend enough time together. So my happy go lucky friend, let’s call her Anne, convinced her to come with us to enviro club. Flora was the DJ and she controlled our science teacher’s computer. Then when we were dancing like idiots and the two boys in the club were occupied, she started scratching her arm. She asked us if we knew how to tell if something was infected. When she rolled up her sleeve we saw her wrist, scarred and an angry red, a fresh cut, much deeper than the others, still wide open from the previous morning. Get it checked out, we told her. She rolled her sleeve back down and was quiet for the rest of lunch.

She’s beautiful and talented and has the worst self esteem ever. In her eyes all she sees of herself is fat, ugly, and stupid. Flora’s life definitely isn’t perfect. It’s like life gave the girl lemons but took the liberty of squeezing the juice in her eyes first. And maybe there isn’t a quick fix for depression, but I want there to be.

In the summer she’s moving away. Maybe because her mom is too stressed. Maybe it’s to get away from everything in this city that ever did her wrong. And I hope to god it will be a clear slate, where she can start over. Because when I see her again in 5 years, it would be a blessing to see her scars finally healing.