Thoughts on Gratitude

Thankfulness is one of those things we talk about a lot but don’t really do much with. But let’s be real, actually practicing thankfulness is hard. We’ve all been trained to say “thank you,” when strangers hold open doors for us and sending thank-you notes to friends and family, but how to we take our gratitude beyond that?

For Americans, Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and so I thought this would be an appropriate time to share these thoughts. I know many of you are reading this from around the world, and so this isn’t just about the holiday of Thanksgiving. Gratitude is a universal concept, after all, and I think everyone can benefit from expressing it a little more often.

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Week In Review – November 17

Welcome to Friday!

I’m keeping it short this week, so no long introduction today. This week, I blogged about the different types of writer friends. I had a lot of fun putting this list together, so if you’re a writer, or if you know some writers, be sure to take a look sometime!

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Types of Writer Friends

As the timeless wisdom of The Legend of Zelda says, “It’s dangerous to go alone!” So why do we writers think we can do this all on our own, anyway? Is it because a majority of us are introverts and hiss at the thought of socializing with others? Or is it because we’ve accepted that we’re societal pariahs and must brave this life alone?

dangerous to go alone

Good news, my fellow writers – we don’t actually have to go it alone! A few months ago, I wrote about benefits of having writer friends, but what are your options? Fortunately for you, I’ve compiled a comprehensive list of the types of writer friends you may encounter in the wild, complete with gifs.

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Week In Review – November 10

Happy Friday, everyone! I hope you all had an awesome week – mine was pretty good! I enjoyed a relaxing weekend with nothing urgent that needed to get done, which was nice. I did a lot of NaNoWriMo-ing, watched some Netflix, played some video games, and worked on other things. But more on that in a minute…

This week, I wrote a blog post about Trying New Things – if you’ve ever wanted to try something new, but just couldn’t make yourself do it, perhaps this will help a little.

As for the rest of the week…

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Trying New Things

“New” is kind of a scary word, isn’t it? A lot of us don’t like new things – new food, new shows, new people (yes, even if you’re an extrovert), and so on. The unknown frightens us – we’re afraid of getting hurt, making a mistake, embarrassing ourselves. It’s normal to be a little scared of new things, but when we let the terror of the unknown control our lives, we end up stuck.

I promise not to ramble about life’s mysteries or theorize as to why we as humans are so afraid of new things in the first place. Instead, I wanted to share a few thoughts on trying new things and why it’s important. After all, you don’t want to be stuck in the same place your entire life, do you?

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Week In Review – November 3

Welcome to Friday, everyone!

This week was pretty good for me! NaNoWriMo began, and I’m really enjoying it so far. Aside from that, school has been going well, and I’ve been feeling less stressed, so overall, things are pretty great!

On my blog this week, I shared my NaNoWriMo Survival Kit, just some tips and tricks for not falling over during the writing competition. If you’re participating this year (or even if you’re not), feel free to check it out!

As for the rest of the week…

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NaNoWriMo Survival Kit

Well my fellow writers, this is it: In just a few short days, NaNoWriMo 2017 will begin, and many of us will be spending more-than-usual amounts of time in front of our computers, typing away until our fingers hurt or we realize we need to eat something.

Writing 50,000 words in thirty days is not an easy task. I can’t speak completely from experience, since all of my NaNoWriMos in the past have allowed me to customize my goal, but the number is daunting. Fortunately, however, it’s not impossible. All you need are the right tools.

Using my own experience, and consulting a few of my friends that are NaNo veterans, I’ve compiled a list of things to include in your NaNoWriMo “Survival Kit.” Hopefully these will be applicable whether you’re a plotter or a pantser (read this post for an explanation), or whether this is your first time or tenth time.

Here’s what I recommend for your NaNoWriMo Survival Kit:

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Week In Review – October 27

Welcome to Friday!

I hope you all had a good week! I know I’m getting to this post a little late (I’ll explain in a moment), so I’ll just cut to the chase.

This week, I wrote a blog post about Writing Lessons from Wolves At The Gate. If you like music, or enjoy learning more about “technical” aspects of writing, feel free to check it out!

And as for the rest of the week…

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Writing Lessons From Wolves At The Gate

In this series, I’ve already covered writing lessons from books, video games, and even a musical. As you can probably tell, I like to draw from some unconventional sources, because I believe that anything can teach us about writing, from books to movies to music to video games. They all tell stories, just in different ways.

Not long ago, I talked about what can be learned from the musical Hamilton, which tells its story through music. This week, I’m going to discuss music again, but in a different light.

Wolves At The Gate (WATG) is a hardcore band from Cedarville, Ohio. I first saw them when they opened for RED a few years ago, and I saw them more recently at Uprise Fest last year. Though I love many hardcore bands, there are few that I’ve really connected with like WATG, and they’ve become one of my favorites. Not only does their music sound amazing, but the lyrics and themes are so artfully put together, and so today, I’d like to talk about what writing lessons we can learn from their music.

Note: I know many in my audience aren’t fans of hardcore music, so I’ll be providing links to lyrics and to the songs themselves. Feel free to listen to them, but you won’t be missing out on the point of the post if you would rather just read the lyrics.

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Week In Review – October 20

Welcome to Friday, everyone!

As you may know, I was on Fall Break last week, and I stayed on campus with a bunch of my friends for the long weekend. We went to a local animal shelter and spent time with the cats and dogs there, visited a corn maze, went on late night adventures to diners, and just had a great time in general. It was such an amazing break, and I’m so thankful for the time we got to spend together!

I also participated in my first readathon with my roommate, Charmaine – we spent Saturday trying to read as many pages as possible. I ended up finishing a book, which was relatively short, but it helped me catch up on my reading goal of the year. I think Charmaine’s planning on putting a video together for it eventually, so when she does, I’ll be sure to link to it. [UPDATE: Here’s the link to the video!]

And finally, I got to meet an author on Sunday! I went to Elizabeth Wein’s event at a bookstore near my school, and I was able to get two books signed by her. It was so cool to meet her in real life

This week I published two blog posts: On Monday, I shared my tips for visiting college campuses, and on Wednesday, I participated in the Beautiful Books linkup for NaNoWriMo. I’m really enjoyed putting both of these posts together, so if you missed them, feel free to take a look!

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