Friday, January 18, 2008

Last Blog

1. I liked writing pmy personal essay alot better than I thought I would. At first I was nervous because I had never done anything like it before, but it was a good experience. I liked it because it gave me the opportunity to write about a really important and valuable experience to me. The mission trip was so powerful and impactful that I always have a hard time retelling the week to people. This essay gave me an outlet to make the experience more vivid and understandable.
2. I agree that reading is crucial to sucessful writing. You may begin with natural writing ability, but if you want to improve yourself as a writer you need to read. Reading is like research to a scientist. It provides you with ideas, new techniques and lessons on what to do and what not to do. Reading will help you develop a unique writing style that is true to yourself. This is because by reading you learn more about what type or writing you respond to, what you like in a story, what you find to be annoying etc. By learning about other authors and their styles you can fuse them into a unique blend, or vary your writing style to apply to what you are specifically writing.
3.My favorite thing to write was the play. I liked writing the play because it presented a new challenge and high school writing assignments tend to become mundane. The play was pure fun to write because my story line was light-hearted, relatable and funny. My ideas that came to mind made me smile. My least favorite things to write were the poems at the begining of the year. I appreciate good poetry but, I myself, do not enjoy writing it. I have always struggled to express my ideas in concise and symbolic ways that read rythmically. I would rather just use full sentences.
4. Quiz
Coke or Pepsi: neither
Li'l Wayne or Little Debbie: taylor
McDonald's or Arby's: mcdonalds!
Chiptole or Taco Bell: chipotle is the best thing ever
American Idol or MTV: mtv
Buffalo Wings or Florida: both!
New York City or Los Angeles: NYC
Name you like for your future daughter: Abigail/ Isabella
Name you like for your future son: Samuel
What is or what will be the first country you see outside the continent of North America: Mexico
Disney movie you would be most likely to watch on your 21st birthday: Aladin
5. Can you figure out what Disney movie my blog title comes from? no, but its familiar.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Assignment 12

1. At first the idea of writing a play seemed daunting, mostly because it was something I had never done before. Coming up with a story that seemed entertaining and fitting for a stage was tough but once I had an idea it came easily. I was pleasantly surprised by how much fun I had writing something driven nearly entirely by dialogue because usually I don't use much. It was a fun way to develop my characters and challenged me as a writer.

2. Well since I am doing this blog late I have already written my personal essay. Instead I will describe what I wrote about and why I chose to do so. I brainstormed in my mind major life events and their impacts on me. I chose to write about my mission trip to the Crow Reservation and how it not only brought me a greater appreciation for my fortunes, but also made me realize how small acts of kindness really do make a difference. I think this is an important message that everyone can relate to.

3. I would chose to give advice to a 10 year old. Their live would soon begin to undergo major changes regarding maturation, relationships, school etc. so I would have alot to say. Also I remember more from this time in my life. I think that in order to give good advice you need to draw from personal experiences to really know what you are talking about. However, as not to just give one overly bias perspective I would also incorporate the experiences of others I know. If you want to connect with the child you also need to listen to their stories and opinions and mold your advice to apply to that. I would give the advice to maintain good relationships with your family because they will also be a stable fixture for you as everything else in your life is evolving. Also, meet friends with similar interests and pursue these interests. Stay on top of your schoolwork because your work habits now will determine your work habits later in life when it is crucial to success.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Assignment 13

1. I would say that I have two leading principles in my life and they are both very important. The first central principle is to do what makes me happy. The other principle is to "do the right thing" This sounds cliche but what I mean by it is to be responsible, fulfill my duties and to take into consideration the feelings of others. I love to be relaxed and social. This makes me happy. Responsibility means to uphold my committments, work hard etc. The conflict lies when these two leading principles conflict. For example, this past weekend I didn't want to work and I wanted to go to the hockey game to make me happy. The shift was a call-in so I was tempted not to call because my work is pretty lenient. However, I forced myself to call and be responsible. Fortunately, they didn't need me and I was happy! :)

2. I remember an article that I read in Seventeen magazine a few months back. It was a heart-breaking and extremely well-written personal account written by a high school senior. The story was about how her long-term boyfriend abused her and the troubles that follwed afterwards. It was really sad because you could really feel her pain. It could happen to anyone and it is sad to think that someone that once made you feel so good and treated you so kindly could turn into a sort of monster. It happens to alot of girls my age, so it really made me more aware.

3. College is looming ahead of me. Part of me is excited and part of me is nervous. I can't wait to get to college, meet new friends, start a new part of my life etc. Then part of me is sad because I love my home, my family, and my friends. Growing up is sad in a way. In 2008, I really hope to make a successful and happy transition from the first 18 years of my life to college. This is important to me beacause college is a milestone. Part of me wants to be a kid forever, but this will be the first real test of my adulthood and it will force me to grow stronger as a person. I want to do this while still keeping close friendships and family relationships back home.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Assignment 11

1. I think that theme is extremely important in what you write. I don't necessarily think that before you write you need to sit down, establish a clear theme and take it from there, but the end product should convey a message. If a story is without theme, it seems relatively pointless. This doesn't mean that the theme has to be anything poignant or ground-breaking, just some sort of idea is relayed in the writing. As a writer, I don't think that you are writing to the best of your ability if your voice does not convey a theme. How clear this theme needs to be is up for debate. Books like The Great Gatsby have relatively clear and distinct themes. This book has stood the test of time because it's theme is relatable year after year. On the other hand, Tortilla Flat by John Steinbeck does not have as clear of a theme. It does however, still have ingrained messages and is a very good read.

2. I think that two important elements must exist in order for a work of literature to stand the test of time. The first, I touched upon in the first question. This is a message that is clear and connects with people. The message itself must still connect to people years later, not just relate to a specific time period. I used the example of the Great Gatsby for this. The idea that wealth does not equate happiness weighs on people's minds today, just as much as it did when the book was written. Second. I think that the book must appeal to a wide range of people. This is not only thematically, but it must also be entertaining. Topics that appeal to many are love, romance, tragedy, war, deceit, murder etc.

3.This is a tough question that I can't say I ever thought about before. The idea of writing something that impacts people carries alot of pressure. I really like to write about love, not just romantically, but with friends, family etc. and I think that my ideas on love could connect with people. I would like to take a stab at a common idea in literature, movies etc. that love has to be over the top, fairy tale seeming, and overall, unrealistic, like some romantic comedy. Finding love in people can be through simple, everyday experiances, and this is what I would want to show. A movie that is a great example of this is Garden State. The two characters fall in love under rather dreary circumstances. Zach Braff's character returns home to attend his mother's funeral and falls in love with an oddball from a strange family. This is hardly a story book romance, but it touched alot of people. I would like to do something like this with my writing.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Assignment 10

1. Something in this world that truly concerns me is the issue of poverty. Money is just thrown around in many parts of the world, especially Edina where we live. People turn the other cheek to the terrible poverty around the world when it would be so easy to help. If people were to give a dollar a day, even less, poverty could see an end. In Ap econ, Mr. Szporn made an interesting point. People might say that the value of a life is priceless, that you couldn't pay them any amount of money to take a life. However, if this was true poverty and starvation wouldn't be such an issue because people would be doing more to help save countless lives lost. I think that poverty is so depressing and often seems far removed from every day life. If it were brought more to the forefront people might pay more attention, but it seems almost less painful to ignore it.

2. My mom's friend Trudey is a dynamic personality. She is practically part of the family. Some people might say that she is a little loopy. She talks to much, sometimes too blatantly, and tells crazy stories. Despite being a little odd, she is hilarious and well- rounded. She is full of random facts about a range of topics. She can rattle off information about horoscopes which, whether you buy into them or not, is fascinating to listen to. She can almost always guess what sign someone is based off of their personality. She is also really caring and genuinely nice. I have never met anyone quite like Trudey.

3. Alot of pieces of art inspire me. One that comes to mind right away is the song "One" by U2. People tease me for listening to U2, but I absolutely love their music and the messages that they carry. "One" is a particularly powerful song, and music video. Some lyrics include:
Did I ask too much
More than a lot
You gave me nothing
Now it's all I got
We're one
But we're not the same
Well we Hurt each other
Then we do it again
You say Love is a temple
Love a higher law
Love is a temple
Love the higher law
You ask me to enter
But then you make me crawl
And I can't be holding on
To what you got
When all you got is hurt
One love
One blood
One life
You got to do what you should
One life
With each other
One life
But we're not the same
We get to Carry each other
Carry each other

The song has really serious and all-encompassing implications. Looked at on a small scale, Bono sings of the impacts that relationships can have on happiness and life. On a global scale, there is the extremely valuable message of peace and love in the world. Everyday in the world, there is death, heartbreak, deceit, racism, prejudice etc. This song stresses that everyone benefits from love and appreciation of everyone. It would bring a better world. This powerful message moves me every time, and has brought me to tears. It inspires me to treat others well, be filled with love, live judgement free, and pray for a better, more cohesive world in the future.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

assignment 9

1. I think happiness and contentness go hand in hand. If you can be content with yourself, the people around you, and the way that you pass your time this brings you endless satisfaction. I dont think that you should have impossible expectations. Little things can bring you cheer. If you have a life full of love, you are good to go.

2. I define happiness in my life as relaxing, interesting and stress-free. School, money, work etc. can be stressful and time consuming. I am most happy when I can pass the time with my friends joking, being lazy, and laughing. I love doing and learning new things and planning activities. This can be seeing an interesting movie, visiting a museum, or doing a project like making a blanket.

3. My friends bring me the greatest source of happiness. My friends are always there for me when I need them. Soemtimes I think that they know me better than I know myself. We laugh endlessly and die laughing just thinking of some of the things we have done. Laughter makes me happy.

4. I think that family can have the greatest impact on each other's happiness. We live in such close quarters and know each other so well. Because of this sometimes it is too easy to take your anger out on them and take them for granted. Sometimes I will be mean to my mom for no reason and this makes her sad. However, when family gets along it is one of the happiest things of all.

5. My greatest need in life is to be carefree and loved. This comes back to my friends once again. The best friends I can ask for not only love me but share with me a zest for life, adventure, and a "let it be" attitude. I am most happy during the summer because this provides the perfect opportunity to be almost always carefree. Responsibilities like school and homework fall away.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Assignment 8

1. A day in the life of Katie Thibeau
2. The importance of friends
3. The bell- haiku poem
4. short story #1- Bittersweet Farewell
5. short story #2- Twisted Love
6. My dad and I (inspired by an in-class prompt)