Tuesday, March 25, 2014

The Divergent Waiting Game

      Now for one of my more nerdier posts, shamelessly so in fact, and largely in part driven by this past weekend's box office release of Divergent based on the novel by Veronica Roth. A series in which for once my sister and most of my friends have on up on me, I think I am in fact one of the last ones to get into the series and read the books. That being said not only did I fly through a majority of the book in less than a day I also saw the movie on opening day with Caroline. 
     Now was a fangirling and bursting with excitement to see the movie on opening day … well if I'm being truthful here no I wasn't excited to see it. Yes I did want to see the movie. Yes I did want to see it sooner rather than later. Yes I did want to see it while it's still playing in theaters. However I did stay up until nearly two in the morning the previous night finishing the book, I did get up to be at work bright and early and the only showing that my sister and I could get tickets for was well past ten o'clock at night. So no I was not particularly excited to see the movie under those circumstances and by the time the previews began to roll I was ready for bed.
     But thanks to pacing and story, action and suspense the movie by itself rallied me and I made it through the 2+ hour movie more energized than when I had walked in. And there's something to be said about seeing a movie on opening day, midnight premieres are even better, because there's an entirely different atmosphere in the theater. You sit in a seat surrounded by true fans, by real fans that both respect the film on the screen and everyone around them. You're not interrupted by side conversations, no one is on their phones, emotion is collectively shared by everyone in the theater. It's truly a great group to be a part of and vastly changes the movie watching experience.
     That being said … and I highly recommend seeing the movie … here's my issue, very slight issue … Okay that's a lie! It's a big issues, at least for me and my OCD. 
     Now I very much enjoyed Divergent and want to read Insurgent, Allegiant and complete the series. So I figured why not head out and just buy the second book? It's very popular right now and almost impossible to get from a library, at least in the immediate future. So I planned to buy the paperback version of Insurgent and then eventually get my hands on Allegiant. I'm old school and I refuse to upgrade to any kind of tablet or e-reader until absolutely necessary. But I can't find the paperback version of it ANYWHERE!
     I had this same problem when I started reading The Hunger Games books; but in that case the paperback versions of Catching Fire & Mockingjay had been pulled from circulation in order to be re-released later on and keep the hype up for the forthcoming movies. I could've made it easy on myself and simply purchased the hardcover version of the book, the boxed set even and get them all at once but paperback simply happens to be my preference. In general they're much easier to carry around, to handle and to read. So yes I could've made it easy but I have a preference and that's a personal choice  I know. However it's impossible for me to believe that I am the ONLY one that has this preference, the only person that prefers a simple paperback to a clumsy hardcover.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

4 Years of College + English Degree = Teach? Is that my only option?

     I'm still trying to figure out why whenever I tell someone I have an English degree they automatically assume my career dreams are to be a teacher? Let's be honest, I don't have the patience to teach. I mean I really don't have the patience for it and if I did I would be teaching college level when people actually want to be in my class and do well. I have great respect for anyone that does teach, I think it takes a lot passion and drive to be a teacher. But that's just not me … and that's okay!
     I got my degree focused in Creative Writing and found my place on the Fiction track. Now let's face it you rarely find posting on career sights, or in the classifieds, or employers looking for Creative Writers. It's just not a common job posting you really see when doing your job search. And for anyone that looks at me skeptically and thinks to themselves "Creative Writing what's she going to do with that?" believe I know you're thinking it and a few of you have even voiced it. I can tell just by the look on your face that you think I'm a fool for spending four years in school to gain a degree that does not guarantee job security, and your skepticism and doubt is nothing I haven't encountered before. But I'm a tough girl and I know how to stand behind my degree and my dreams.
     Because yes I may be working in a job that I did not study for, I work in the automotive industry, which if you ask anyone in this industry it's really not a job people look to get into. You kind of stumble into and find your niche; well guess what I like my job! I'm good at my job! And if I can't be making money in my dream career then I'm glad to have found a job that I enjoy and can do well, it's better than getting out of bed everyday and dreading going to work because it's not where I want to be.
Ultimately I don't want the car business to be my career, I have dreams of my own in regards to my writing and that is where I eventually want to end up. It's getting there that will be the issue. But for all the doubtful nay-sayers, all those that think the only thing I can do with an English degree is be a teacher, to everyone that thinks I'm fooling myself about job security … I know all of this!
     All of these reasons are the reasons why I am not fooling myself by being unemployed with my head in the clouds! I found a job that I like and I work on my writing on my own time. I have a plan to one day be a published author with writing credits. I hope that one day I will be able to support myself solely on my writing, but realistically should that day ever come it is a long way off into the future.
And to anyone that doesn't know what this process is like, how difficult this journey can be please I implore you to think before you pass judgments. Like anyone fresh out of college the job market is difficult, paved with potholes and contingencies; can't get a job because I have no experience and the jobs I can get I'm too over qualified for. Believe me all of us are stuck between a rock and a hard place. But I refuse to be the one to turn my nose up at a job just because it's not what I went to school for or think that I'm "overqualified" for anything! A job, any job, means work experience, it means networking connections, it means potential. And that's really what it's all about.
     So for now I'm a car girl, I kind of always will be a car girl, but one day I will be an author! I'll make that transition from writer to author. Just you wait and see!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Sports Night 2014 - BLUE TEAM WINS!

Sports Night 2014
Step Right Up To Blue

     I know I've said it before and I guess I'm going to say it again. But only because I am incredibly proud of my sister and her team. And I know this blog post is a day late, but hey better late than never. Plus I'm still trying to get my life back in order after the whirlwind that is St. Mary's Sports Night. Not even having been a participant in this year's competition I feel like I was.
     I did everything possible to support and assist my sister and her captains, her team, in every and any way that I could. I chaperoned practices for hours on end, helped teach Blue Karaoke a stunt, cleaned up glass when they accidentally broke a mirror on the gym floor. Everything from taking and ordering a few dozen sweatshirts, making sure every guest Caroline invited was decked out from head to toe in Blue Team spirit gear. I gave up my days off to help with building her entrance prop and touching up the mural.
     I made more trips to AC Moore and Michael's in a month than I ever had to make when I was crafting for Tri Delta. Believe me that's a lot of trips. But in the end it was all worth, even if they hadn't won both teams performed amazingly. The show was great and it was great to be in the stands and be able to know not one or two, but a majority of the girls on both the Blue and the White team. Being a spectator can be just as much fun as being a participant.
     I'm glad that my sister had as much fun with Sports Night as I did when I was at St. Mary's. I'm glad she had as much fun as our mother did when she was on the Blue Team at St. Mary's. In our family Blue Team is a legacy and I hope to continue that legacy well into the future.

Post Blue Team Victory

Blue Team Overall Captains
"We Love Our Overall"

Blue Overall Captains

Blue Team Overall Captains & White Team Overall Captains

 Blue Karaoke Routine

Blue Karaoke

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Word Challenge

So this week I'm doing something a little different …

Here I present a short short, 750 words that originated from 1. One of the assignments that my Advanced Fiction class was given was to write a short short of 750 words or less. It's a snippet, a scene, a juicy little taste if you will. In my case I took one word and turned it into this assignment.
Something I really enjoyed about this assignment is that background information, long drawn out explanations of little details, character bios, none of that was necessary to create a small little moment that could potentially become something more.

Who knows perhaps I'll do more of these, I'll take word suggestions too! Though on the off chance I don't know the definition of the word or understand it I may not use it to create a short short. In this case the word that started it all was TRANSPARENT. So please enjoy …

Two Faced

            I know the tricks and I know how they’ll try to influence me. But there’s not much to tell when I haven’t done anything wrong. The sitting, the waiting, the questions, it’s all more of the same at this point.
            A detective entered the room with his generic, sorry for the wait, yeah right. He told me his name, but it didn’t even register in my brain. I know why I’m here this time, I know why it’s different from all the other times, learning his name is not part of the equation.
            “Can I get you anything?” he asked. Trick number one, give me a can of Coke and bam they have prints and a DNA sample.
            “Yeah let me go,” I said. No Cokes for me.
            The detective opened a file and slid it across the table to me. “I’m afraid we can’t.”
            I looked at the file, at the pictures of the crime I’d supposedly committed. “This is all very impressive, but it means very little to me. I’m innocent.”
            “Funny because you look an awful lot like the composite we put together.” He took a paper from the file and turned it towards me. Striking resemblance I’ll give him that, but no cigar. “We also have prints.”
            “But not my prints and you can’t take mine because I’m not under arrest,” I said, wiggling my leather covered fingers. Trick number two, they have prints, but nothing to compare them too. “Besides if I gave you my prints you’d only be disappointed and where’s the fun in that?” His face started to go red, good, the more flustered he gets the sloppier he’ll get. Just keep him talking a little longer.
            “If you’re so innocent your prints could clear you,” he said.
            “And have ‘em go into the system? I don’t think so,” I put my hands on the file and pushed it back.
            “You’ve been questioned quite a bit.”
            “Questioned, not charged, two very different things,” I shot back.
            Someone from the outside tapped on the glass; the detective got up and left me alone in the room again. I gave whoever was watching a little wave and a smile. The detective wasn’t gone long this time.
            He returned with a new piece of paper and a grim look.
            “Let me guess, this is the part where you say we have DNA evidence against you,” I drawled.
            “Where is she?” The detective put the piece of paper down and slid it across the table to me. Annie.
            They found my birth record, well more specifically they found mine and my twin’s birth record. Mia and Annie, born three minutes apart, identical twins yet we couldn’t be more different. It’s why I fit the profile of every crime she’s ever committed.
            “I don’t know.”
            “You’re lying,” he snarled.
            I leaned forward and lowered my voice so he had to listen. “Prove it.”
            The sergeant came in just then and announced my brother was here for me, I’m not under arrest so they have to let me go. Ben and I made it three blocks away from the precinct when he stopped me.
            “What happened? Do you know how long you’ve been in there?”
            “Don’t worry at the forty-eight hour mark they have to let me go or charge me,” I said. “I had it under control.”
            “Jesus Mia, how much longer are you going to keep doing this? How many times can you cover for her?”
            “It was the last time Ben, I swear.”
            “You said that last time,” he said frustrated. Ben always gets stuck with picking one of us up from jail.
            “No it is this time,” I said. “Annie’s not coming back. She’s gone for good this time.”
            “What …”
            “She killed a cop Ben, she comes back she’s getting a needle in her arm,” I said.
            Ben’s face paled. “What did you do?”
            “Bought her time,” I said. “I went to her place because she wasn’t answering her phone, they found me there and hauled me in.”
            “Mia you could get in serious …”
            “How? They brought me in. They questioned me. The only thing I did wrong was try to check on my sister,” I said. “Ben I’m safe, I just kept them talking. She got a thirty hour head start.”
            “Why?” Ben asked. “Why put yourself through that?”          
            “She’s my sister, and if they’re looking at me, they’re not looking for her.”