A story that’s short

Okay I’m going to be honest, I am not a huge fan of my short story idea. It just seems really unoriginal. I mean I feel like with all the TV and articles and books I consume on a regular basis I would have more creative juices flowing but as of present I really don’t. Thankfully, my story is maybe starting to grow on me. I still don’t really know where it’s going but hopefully somewhere interesting. The thing that I just hate about it though is that I don’t know if I would want to read my story if I just came across it as an outside person.

My idea stems from how much pressure is put on high scholars about the SAT. It feels like that test is like a defining moment in your high school career. And it is. It pretty much sets the stage for what colleges are in your reach and whether you will get scholarships. I want to make the point that what you get on the SAT, or other tests for that matter, doesn’t define you and what your life will become. Sadly, not doing well does lead to some consequences. But many of those are because of how put down we are mentally from our failure.

Because of the work that we have been doing, my story definitely is more of a story than a statement protesting SATs. It actually has characters with backstories and developing personalities. I also got a lot from listening to other people’s ideas for stories and I’m pretty excited to see how they turn out.

Whenever I have written stories in the past I have started out just throwing my ideas on a paper and hoping they get somewhere. This time around (even though I hate that I had homework) I feel more organized with my story because of all the work I have done dissecting the story I am going to write. Now I have set points to get to in my story. There is a lot of structure and hopefully I won’t need to do as much editing. I guess in the past I have thought of stories as more coincidental than they probably are. This is not the case I have now realized and I am glad because it will definitely improve my story writing. You know I feel like in most of my schooling they have focused more on other types of writing such as persuasive. Story writing has gotten tucked in the back corner. It’s kind of sad so I’m glad we are getting a chance to write a story now (even though it’s a lot of work).

 

The Bassoon King

After seeing Rainn Wilson on The Office countless times I am so happy to be reading his book and learning about how he became who he is today. The book is written in a very casual tone. It almost feels like he is just having a conversation with you about himself and giving life advice along the way. I’ve actually gained a lot of respect for the guy and wish I could in some way have him mentor me for a day. Reading the book has been therapeutic for me so far. I mean it’s funny at times but it’s also somewhat relaxing to not think about my life and just listen Mr. Wilson talk about his successes and failures. One thing that I run in to a lot is that some of Dwight’s characteristics can also be found in Mr. Wilson and that’s probably why he played the character so well. Mr. Wilson admits to being a nerd and a comic and sci-fi enthusiast. He does cosplay and keeps up on a lot of obscure science fictions stories as Dwight does. (Unfortunately he doesn’t have a 60-acre beet farm, but his mom did live on a farm as child.) He is pretty eccentric just as Dwight is. Mr. Wilson started high school as the nerdiest person you can imagine but when he changes high schools he completely revamps his identity. He chooses to become more outgoing and involves himself in drama which he says is the top of the geek food-chain. This is when his dreams of being an actor/comedian really took off. When I read this about him part of me kind of wished that I could change schools. I mean don’t get me wrong I like Bloomsburg High School but sometimes I feel stuck with the identity that has followed me. I mean I’ve been going to school with some the kids in my grade since Kindergarten. I have definitely changed since then but I feel like now I’m set on who I am as a person or how people see me.  I can’t act differently all of the sudden I just have to continue to be the same me I was last year. I don’t like being more on the reserved side most of the time but I feel like I don’t have anything to say because I really haven’t had anything to say before. But who knows if I would have the guts to be more expressive if I moved schools anyway. This blog got a little off topic but I will say that “The Bassoon King” is a book I highly recommend to anyone-not just Office fans.

The Devil and Walker a review

This story has a very interesting perspective. Usually in most stories the greedy or bad character is more of a minor character. In this one the main focus is on Tom Walker who is a pretty horrible person. He is also married to a horrible women who I thought atributed to how terrible of a person Tom was. Being stuck married to someone like that had to be pretty hard. I wished for some reason to have her be a more involved character but I liked how the author used her to make a point. When Tom takes his venture into the forest, it’s pretty shocking that after he finds out that he is conversing with the devil, he still carries on in converstation. He also doesn’t involve himself with devil because he is desperate or poor and has no where else to go. He only does it out of his own greed. Really this is a classic story of karma. You can’t hide from the consequences of doing wrong because it will come back to get you in the end. The society the author paints is very grim. During the whole story, there is not really a happy part. It sheds some light on the people who act holier then thou but in reality only profit from other peoples grief throughout their entire lives. Everyone in the town where Tom lives is used to terror from all sorts of evil beings. Many people are also superstitious and feel that the only way to be saved is to be as religious as possible. This seemed very accurate for the time period and it worked well for the story being told. I think Ivring wrote this to highlight the wrongs of those in power who may seem perfect on the outside. He also wrote it to warn people not to get involved with the wrong crowd only for their own self benefit- or just in general. I think that if this story were to be rewritten for modern times I would make Tom Walker invest in a very well oganized scam by criminals and gain a lot of money from it. One of the members could get put in prison and then choose to give up Tom’s name in order to be let go. Then Tom would be put in prison for life.

More sleep, less notes

My biggest take away from the notes this week was probably that all good writers really without realizing it create stories that follow the elements of short stories. They don’t really sit down and say “Now I must make sure that I have a climax and resolution to keep the reader entertained. Oh and to make it interesting I’ll add in some similes and metaphors”. Most writers probably don’t anyway-it comes to them naturally. When I thought back to historical novels I have read that still flow like stories I realized that the way stories are set up (or the way we expect them to be set up) are based on experiences in life. The timeline of climaxes and resolutions are what inspires authors to write the way they do. That is why the elements of short stories are evident in most stories and stories aren’t written many other ways. They just wouldn’t make sense to people without a beginning, middle, and end.

Observing a story and being a participate are important to understand and be able to tell apart. I think you know you really are a participant when the world around you disappears while you are reading. It feels as though all there is is the story the words create playing in front of you. I am mostly a participate. To me books are like expeditions.  They take me a long time of thought and concentration if I’m really a part of the story. But that is the best way to read. To be honestly though, the biggest reason I always read so indepth is that I’m a terrible skimmer. Reading fast just doesn’t really make sense of all the information that I need so I usually just read word for word. This has definitely changed how I read but in some ways I’m glad because it has forced me to take in things slower allowing me more time to think about the text.

As for my second week, I have just been really tired for some reason. It’s probably because fusion has started which means I never get enough sleep. Hopefully my sleep schedule will adjust but I doubt it. The school work is okay for now but I’m sure it’ll  get worse. Guess I’ll just have to wait and see.