June 27, 2011

My Return!

It seems that I have fallen prey to the trap that at some point takes us all as bloggers, that scary luck that tears us away from our computers, that thrusts us into the scorching sunlight, that forces us to begin every post with the same ill-fated words, "It's been a long time, loyal readers...."

Indeed it has! I fear not only that it has been too long, but that when I have finally gotten back to this keyboard, I had just been reading A Picture of Dorian Gray. Beware purple prose, but I'm just in the mood, if you would not mind.

Now that I've gone meta, I seem to be out of the mood, but not entirely. Well, let's continue this, shall we?

First, for an update on my life. I've finished my SparkLife series (old news), I've gotten another article posted on SparkLife , as well as another edited version of that article published on Teen Ink (which you can rate by clicking this link). The biggest news, however, is that "My Syria" will be published in the August issue of Teen Ink, the PRINT PUBLICATION!



Most of my readers are also writers, so I hope you understand my euphoria when I say once the magazine is printed, I am a legit writer! I am not just a blogger, not just someone whose frivolous posts made it onto SparkNotes, onto another website--I. Am. A. Writer.


As a side note, isn't it strange that our legitimacy relies solely on the recognition of others? How pathetic does that make us? We, whose niches are to reveal life, entertain the mind, invert the eyes, we cannot see past our own egos and need for validation. We rely on others for our self-realization, and as wordsmiths don't create another name for that pretentious impersonation of what that term is meant to mean? It seems I hold great contempt for myself, but this is a post for another time.

Also, I will be attending Duke Young Writers' Camp next month, for which I will write a review later on.

I am truly sorry for neglecting this blog so.

Your Writer,

June 02, 2011

Diary of A Freshman: The End

During the last few months, I've had many Diary of a Freshman drafts on my Blogger account. I kept telling myself, "Well, don't post them just yet! You need to wait, spread them out!" It's the last week of May now, and I've been hit with a sudden realization: Freshman year is nearly over. There are no more posts to write, no new freshman experiences to be had. This year is over. Along with the joy that comes with a new summer, there is an emotion I certainly did not expect. I'm already feeling a strange sense of nostalgia coming over me, for something that isn't really gone yet, so I have one question for myself.

Why the hell am I going to miss freshman year?

The answer comes to me before I've even finished the thought. It's because freshman year is apart of me. Yes, I know, all experiences become apart of you, but this year especially. It wasn't as fun or as miserable as I had expected, it was something else entirely. It was like I started a new life. I made friends with people I never thought I'd be close to, I pursued interests I never would have before, I became myself. I've grown in so many ways and I've achieved what I'd previously considered impossible. I can't exactly put into words what this year has meant to me. It marks for me an entirely new era of my life.

Every person, at some point in their lives, is four people: the person you are trying to be, the person you are acting like, the person you wish you were, and the person you are. This year I forgot about the other three, and I learned to be the person I am, and I can honestly say that I've never been happier.

I had no accurate idea of what this year would be, I had no accurate idea of who I was, no accurate idea of anything. Perhaps I still don't. All I do know is being a Freshman is about change.

If I were a different person, a reader of this blog, a third party watching my life, I would not look at this past year and say, "Wow, what an amazing time!" because it wasn't all dandy. Objectively, it wasn't very good at all. My pre-Freshman self would have thought this to be a rather bad year. Now? I would hardly change a moment. The point is, know that your mind WILL change, and if it doesn't, you're not doing it right! Freshman year is about creating yourself and finding the missing pieces, and most of all, about growing up, so if you are doing it right, you're probably not like you were a year ago, and you might not be sure of much anymore, but that's alright, because the chaos, and confusion, and heartbreak, and sadness, and fun, and pain, and joy are all part of freshmen year. This has been a year of turbulence--exciting, nerve-wracking turbulence. And just as in turbulence your life flashes before you and you come out of your plane thinking, "Now I know what's important!" freshman year is equally, if not more so, changing.This year of turbulence isn't a guarantee that the next three years will be trouble-free, and it's not a guarantee that any year in the rest of our life will be simple! But I like it this way. Let's hope to God that every year is as challenging as this one has been. After all, an easy life? Where's the fun in that?

Your Content Blogger,

June 01, 2011

Diary of a Freshman: Finals

Remember how in middle school, you'd take a couple tests, give a few presentations, then did almost nothing for about three weeks? Well, high school is nothing like that. You use every last day of class to learn material, and on the last or penultimate day of class, you take your final. It's crazy. It's stressful. It's sleep-depriving. However, you can save yourself.

Do not make my mistakes.

If all of your finals are easy, at LEAST review the subject somewhat. Believe me, you won't regret it.

Also, you may want to set multiple alarms so that you don't oversleep on the day of your French final...like I did. (I didn't miss it though!)

If you are given a study guide, do it quickly. My way of studying for the math final was learning everything that my teacher failed to teach, and I don't think doing it all the night before helped much.

Pack your backpack before you sleep. If you're like me, you'll forget your calculator and evidence of extra credit. Believe me, it sucks.

Basically, be prepared for a very stressful week. Don't get too bummed out, though. They position the hardest week of the semester right before summer, because you spend so much time studying that you go into a coma for the first week of summer break. Finally, you are able to just rest!

Wait, no, that's a lie, because you have a summer math assignment. Seriously, I'm not kidding.

Well, have fun with that!

Your Final-Taking Blogger,