Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Just a Television Show?

Throughout life, there are so many things that inspire us. Whether that be obvious things like a person or a place or even simpler things like a book, a painting, or movie. I try to find inspiration in each day. I look for it in a news story about a young girl who dedicated her birthday to a charity or a sunset. I look for it in my friends and family or in the latest book I'm reading. I look for it in a song. Regardless of the type of media, inspiration in everywhere.
Today is the last filiming day ever of my favorite television show, One Tree Hill. And the reason I associate this with inspiration is because this show inspired me in so many ways. yes, it has been criticized TREMENDOUSLY. It's not the most outstanding television show and it can be unrealistic.
But to me, who cares if a storyline was too soap opera-ish. Who cares if you completely hate this show? For me, and the people who have watched OTH, we all know it's just a tv show (except for those crazy fan girls with no lives). We know the characters are fictional but for an hour every week, we felt what they did. That is the beauty of good writing and film.
Mark Schwan may not have had the classiest plot lines but he created characters people all over the world relate to in some way with every episode; characters we fell in love with. And if you don't like OTH than this still applies to whatever your favorite tv show is.
I have followed OTH from Day 1. And when my life was at it's toughest, I could lose myself in an episode and watch these fictional characters struggle in their own lives and come out strong and it always pushed me to do the same.
Peyton was and always will be my favorite character not because I was adopted and both my biological mother and adopted mother died, and not because I have experience with psychos or starting my own record label. But because when I was 15, 16, 17, 18 years old, I knew what dark times and losing your faith felt like. And like Peyton, I found my faith in music. In high school, I always shut people out and Peyton's character taught me that you just gotta let someone in sometimes.
Same with Lucas and his love of literature. Literature is my life and whenever that voiceover came on with a new quote, it meant something to me.
OTH wasn't just teenage drama. It showed that even when you lost your way, you could find it again in your friends, in music, in love, in art, and in family.
So when you say, "but OTH is just a tv show," to me, it was more than that. It got me through so much heartache and times of just being lost. And that part of my life is ending. I owe a lot to Schwan's writing and the actors' performances. I knew it was fictional and I knew that a lot of the stuff that happened on that show would NEVER happen in real life but that doesn't mean it didn't inspire me any less than a book or painting or a news story.
And just like anything that inspires me, I am eternally grateful for this show and the lessons it brought to my life.


Saturday, November 12, 2011

Why Do I Write?

In my senior year and even in my freshman year of college, one question I heard as frequently as "What college are you going to?" or "What's your major?" is "Why did you choose writing?"
When picking my major, I didn't factor in how easy it would be for me to find a job in the field I chose as much as I based my decision on what I loved. But why writing? What is it about writing that sparked a flame inside me to make me want to dedicate the rest of my life pursuing it?
It's not a short and sweet answer. In fact I could write an entire novel about why I'm passionate about writing.
The art of writing has always fascinated me.
For me, having the ability to take something you see in the world or something that is completely derived from your head is a great talent. It's one thing to see something and appreciate its beauty and place in the world. It's another to take a pen to paper or your fingers to a keyboard and use words guided by the rules of grammer to recreate that beauty.
Sure, in a technical sense, writng is correct speeling, punctuation, grammer and the overall conveyance of an idea. But it's the way you utilize those things to make a reader feel the words, that I love most.
It's amazing how an idea from someone's head or an experience can be manipulated into words and sentences on paper in a way that makes someone feel happy or sad. They're just letters and punctuation. Yet, it's those that create new worlds and evoke the reader to feel along with the character.
In writing, you can create characters that a reader can relate to and find a piece of themself. It's mind blowing, how just an imaginary human, or place, or whatever can make a reader feel as if it really exists.
J.K Rowling is one of my literary heroes, simply because she took an idea she got on a train and turned it into the beautiful world of Harry Potter. This world she created kept readers hooked for seven whole books. And I'll admit, those words about a boy wizard and his struggle against evil made me feel a apart of his triumphs and cry with him during his grief. It's this ability of the author that drew me to the field.
Some of the greatest icons like Huck Finn, Gatsby, or Lily Barth are completly made up from somebody's mind, but that doesn't stop us from feeling what they feel and becoming in invested in their worlds.
I've never learned magic in a huge castle or faked my own death to escape my dad. But I feel as if I have because Rowling and Twain gave me that ability when they manipulated letters and words into a piece that became important to me and into characters that trusted me with their story.
Capturing the beauty of life in words and creating characters that help us understand that beauty is why I write. Having the ability to take a piece of myself and create an entire world that will hook a reader from page one is why I write.
Writing isn't a craft to me. It's a passion. And no matter what happens, I'll always have those characters and words helping me understand the world around me.
I can only hope that one day I'll be able to do the same.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Bucket List :)

Lately, I've been thinking a lot about how I hold myself back or let things and people in my life hold me back. Well, I'm tired of it. I want to stop just "going through the motions." I want to live and explore to the fullest of my capabilities. I want to look back one day and think "Damn, I did a lot." I want to learn who I am through living and experiencing. And that's the attitude I have had recently. Then, I found a Tumblr page with bucket list items. So, I wanted to share some of the things on my list.

And so, so, so MUCH MORE. I wish I could fit it all into this entry but that's impossible.
It's not impossible, however, to do any of it.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Finding the Poetry

Today I came across a quote that really stuck with me:
"It's never too late to be who you might have been." ~George Eliot
People say don't live in the past. That's good advice, but I don't think we should completely forget our past. All those trials and lesson you encounter have made you who you are now. I used to try to bury my past and completely shut it from my present memory. But lately, I've learned to embrace it and work it into the decisions I'm faced with at this time in my life. Your past can be a useful tool to build from. It can also be a good reference in times of hopelessness and weakness. We weren't given an instruction manual for life, but the past can be one that is left unfinshed.
I don't mean to say let's all focus on our pasts. What I mean is, we should continue to learn from it and refer to it as a guide in certain situations.
Personally, as someone who wasn't the best version of myself last year, I find comfort in this quote. To me it means that despite the mistakes and dark times I encountered last year, I can come back from it. The person I was proud of when I was 17, 18, 19 years old is not lost. I'm still her underneath the new experiences I have encountered. My direction hasn't changed, I just lost pieces of it.
At 17, writing and literature was my life. I wrote constantly. Yet, now at 21, I only write when school requires it. I could find that passion again. It's not lost. Just like my love of music isn't. At these ages I remember just sitting back and listening to songs that meant something to me and finding peace in them. It was a form of release for me and I gained a type of euphoria from the lyrics that made sense of the world. I have forgotten this euphoria.
It's aspects like these that make me nostalgic of this part of my life. It was my ability to find poetry in every day and put that poetry down on paper to make a story out of it. I don't miss the two bedroom apartment that overlooked the highway. I miss the girl behind those walls who found beauty in how rain dripped from the window ledge or how my mom moved her lips when she read.
I lost touch with my spirituality. And I don't mean religion. I mean my sense of the world around me and my ability to always find something beautiful about it. I miss the music behind a pen on paper creating words that came not from my mind, but my heart.
Nostalgia isn't a bad thing in my eyes. It reminds us of the people we want to be. And as Eliot says, it's never too late to find that poetry or music in my life. It's there in every moment of my life. I can still be that girl I might have been before I lost my way. And that's the most comforting thing of all.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The FAT Question

I hate the word "fat". Hate, hate hate it. I have tried eliminating it from my vocabulary all together. It's a mean word really. I mean, type "fat" into google and you get:

Type in "skinny" and you get:

And yes, these photos are meant to be exagerrations, but are they really? Is this how our soceity really perceives "fat" and "skinny"? I think so.
Look at the obvious difference between the two sets of photos. The "fat" women are shown with food while the "skinny" women are wearing designer clothes. There is something wrong with this. Even though (well at least for me) I cringe at all of them. No one wants to be that heavy, and personally, I would never want to be that skinny. Both are not attractive.
Then there is this picture:

The women's ideal is smaller than both the mean's ideal and the national average! Why are we all so hung up on being as thin as we can be. I see nothing wrong with a size 14. Yet being a size 14 is joked as being "fat". And to me, that woman is not fat. She is gorgeous.
Yet, we always see 14 or 12 as a bad number.
I know from personal experience, that soceity sucks and so does the whole weight question. I've been that size 14 and let me tell you, I still got called "fat" and felt horrible about myself. but as time went on and I've gained and lost, size 14 is healthy.
That is where our soceity goes wrong. There should be no "fat" or "skinny". It should be healthy. At 150 pounds I am going to look A LOT different than someone else who is 150 pounds. The word unique is not just some cliche. Everyone is different. Yet, our soceity makes us strive to be that size 6 or even 0. But it's not REALISTIC.
What should be our perception is to be whatever weight is healthy. If you eat right and exercise, then your weight will take care of itself. And that weight, is what's most natural. But the weight you acheive when starving yourself or forcing yourself to go to the gym for hours and hours... that is unrealistic. but stuffing your face with chips and cakes isn't realistic either.
There is a horrible misrepresentation when it comes to weight in this country. We should start getting our heads out of the anorexic and bulimic girls' butts and just eat healthy and take care of our bodies.
That's my outlook at least.