Blogging · Writing

Blogger Prompt Chain

Blogger Prompt Chain

Thank you to the awesome Rachel Poli who tagged me. Here’s to creating a “chain” of stories written by writers and bloggers.

Rules:

  1. Pick one of the five given writing prompts.
  2. Set up the Blogger Prompt Chain banner and publish your story under the banner.
  3. After your story, continue the chain by forwarding an invitation to five bloggers or writers. (In case a writer doesn’t have a blog, guest posts can be offered.)
  4. Don’t forget to link the writers to your blog and back to the one who invited you.
  5. Publish the five writing prompts and rules.

Prompts:

a) The End of The Bucket List

Write a story about a character who finds out that he or she is dying and has been knocking things off his/her bucket list and has finally reached the last item.

b) Get Out of the Car With Your Hands Up

You’re driving to your favourite city when you’re stopped by a police officer. Sure, you were going a few miles over the speed limit, so you’re not overly surprised. But you are surprised when the police officer gets to your car and screams, “Get out of your car with your hands up!” This leads to an unexpected night for you. Write this scene.

c) Hiring a New Villain

Your old villain quit over creative differences, so you’ve put yourself in charge of hiring a new villain for your novel. What questions do you ask? What does the new villain’s resume say? Write this scene as if it were a job interview.

d) At The End of The Rainbow

You and a friend have decided to try and follow a rainbow to see if the end holds a pot of gold. But when you finally reach the end, you find something much more valuable than a pot of gold—and it changes your life. Write this scene.

e) The Letter All Writers Should Write

Write a letter to a person who supported your writing career, whether that be a friend, a family member, a teacher (even one that supported you at a very young age before you knew that it would blossom into a writing career), an author you’ve never met but have been inspired by his or her writing. Do you thank them? Do you blame them? Take the letter in any direction you want.

The Letter All Writers Should Write:

Dear Ms. Davis,

Thank you for everything.

I will never forget all you did for me when I was young and dumb.

Thanks for taking interest, for asking questions. More than anything, I’m thankful you believed in me…even when I didn’t.

I’ll always remember you pulled me aside not once but twice. You cared enough to talk to me and see if I was okay before sending me home. You were also the first person who got the chance to tell me someone else wanted to publish my work.

I don’t know if I would’ve taken writing as seriously if not for the start I had. The beginning of every writer’s career matters a lot. I had a good one thanks to you.

I can’t remember everything but I remember some things. I’m sure the memories will come back. Slowly but surely. I’ll treasure all of them.

Your lessons have gone a long way. I owe a lot of my current successes and failures to you. I have no regrets.

You taught me how to be a student. More importantly, you educated me on how to be a writer.

I wonder where you are right now. I hope you’re doing well.

Thank you so much for everything.

I like to believe you’re proud of how much yet also how little I’ve changed. I’m still just as concise and vague at twenty years old like I was at fourteen.

Sincerely,

Herminia

My Invitations:

I’m going to be that blogger who tags everybody and essentially nobody to participate.

Thanks again to Rachel Poli for the invite. I hope you’re all following her amazing blog.

Writing

The Life Of A Writer


The writing life is a unique one to say the least.

Being a writer teaches you how to be patient. Especially when all your characters take one look at your outline, laugh, and do the exact opposite. I don’t outline for this reason. I’ve been burned many times.

Eventually, you lower your expectations until you no longer have any. Can’t be disappointed if you don’t set yourself up to be, am I right? Besides, the best moments are the ones you never see coming.

What do you mean you’re publishing my story? That’s impossible! You must be mistaken.

You learn to reject rejection.

You rejected me? No way! That’s your loss, not mine.

This post is already trending in the direction of a certain bad writer being in full denial.

Over time, you hone your stalking, er, observing skills. Stalking isn’t ok. But observing people is a fine skill to have in your arsenal. It’s better than watching paint dry.

Obviously, you constantly deal with things not going your way because life never goes the way you expect it to. What’s more, other human beings do a great job messing up your well-laid plans. Yes, fictional characters are people too.

There’s a beauty in being a teacher and student at the same time. After all, you become an expert at whatever you’re writing about. Hello, Google.

Sooner rather than later, you’ll get ink stains on everything. I literally mean everything. Your fingers and hands. Your legs and toes. Your wallet and bag. Your desk and bed. But you embrace them because what kind of writer doesn’t have ink on some body part at any given time?

This universe bestows upon many greats the secrets to handling hand cramps. In fact, you might even strengthen your hands so much you never feel pain ever again. When’s the last time you had a hand cramp? Surely cramps are a sign of someone who doesn’t write often.

Can you tell I was in some kind of mood while penning this post? I’m half joking. Please don’t flay me alive.

Personal Reflection

World Teachers’ Day

October 5th is upon us. It’s World Teachers’ Day today, as I’m sure you’ve probably gleaned from the title or elsewhere, but remember to celebrate educators every day.

World Teacher Day

The folks at Grammarly did an amazing job making this infographic. I wish I had even half the skills they did.

Many thanks to every teacher out there.

Continue to inspire.

School · Studying

Story-time With Herminia Chow

Story-time With Herminia Chow is now officially a title of one of my posts because I think it sounds cool. Even though it probably doesn’t. In all honesty, I have no idea what else to call what I’m about to say.

Today, my history teacher quizzed us.

He told the class beforehand to read the first two chapters in our textbook. I’d be lying if I said I did the readings properly.

Two students had led a seminar and some of the information they presented was, lo and behold, on the quiz. I didn’t participate at all. Plus I know I zoned out a few times as well.

There were also similar questions to a worksheet he assigned the day he wasn’t here. I actually completed this worksheet. But my wonderful brain decides to get these questions and only these questions wrong. Questions I should have known the answers to.

I somehow still managed to get the highest mark. So did everyone else not attempt the readings, not listen to the seminar, and not bother with the worksheet?

For once, my guessing game was strong. Everything I guessed, I got right.

By the way, I wrote a follow-up article on test-taking. The post was published yesterday: Keep Calm and Get Straight A’s: What to Do Before, During and After Every Test.

The irony is not lost on me here.

And you wonder why I don’t study. Or rather why I despise it with a passion.

Writing

Tips On Writing A Research Paper

Today, a teacher of mine announced to the class that I wrote an awesome research paper. I’m not sure I believe him, but here’s what I did.

  • Start researching early. The earlier you start, the more time you have. The later you start, the less time you have. Simple, basic logic. Too bad people enjoy doing this thing called procrastinating. I advise you not to jump on the bandwagon if you plan on writing an A+ paper.
  • Let your teacher guide you. Ask questions if you are confused. Seek clarification so you know what your professor is expecting of you. Email them if you’re too shy to speak to them face to face.
  • Pick the right number of sources. If you pick too many, your paper may be all over the place. If you pick too few, your paper may sound redundant. Depending on the length of your paper, the number of sources you use will vary. Sometimes your teacher gives a range. If that’s the case, aim to fall in the middle of that range.
  • Select the right kind of sources. Some sources won’t help you formulate your thesis, arguments, etc. Pick what you use wisely.
  • Record references and thoughts. I didn’t do this but had I done this from the beginning, my life would have been so much easier. I’m giving you a chance to learn from me. Take it.
  • Don’t fixate on your arguments too quickly. They may change. So don’t get caught up in saying something that you neglect to say another point that’s even stronger.
  • Polish, polish, polish. Grammar mistakes make for bad impressions. Spelling mistakes make for even worse impressions. Your chances of getting a good mark increases every time you read over your work and fix your errors.  
  • Save, save, save. You never know when the power may go out. A friend of mine learned this the hard way. Don’t make the same mistake she did.
Writing

You Know You Are A Damn Good Writer When

You know you are a damn good writer when….an English teacher accuses you of plagiarizing.

Like what kind of writer copies someone else’s ideas instead of coming up with their own? Why would a writer ruin the writing process for themselves? A real writer uses their own words, their own ideas, and their own brain. 

Creative Writing

A Thank You To Teachers

This is a shout-out to all the wonderful teachers I’ve had in the past, current professors, and future ones. Love you all. 

Thank you for being patient and caring

For being honest and understanding

I’ve fallen down and faced strife

Still you’ve managed to change my life

*

I hope I never disappoint you

I’m sorry if I ever do

I’ll try until I get it right

Know that every day I continue to fight

*

Seeing you puts a smile on my face

Now I know I’m in the right place

You make everything better

I will remember you forever

School

What Are Your Goals For This School Year?

An often understated and underused feature of WordPress. This is my second time embedding a poll into a post, my first pertaining to starting a Twitter account.
Because I am a curious creature (aren’t all writers curious?), I wanted to poll some of you who are going back to school. If you aren’t, perhaps you can ask your children what their goals are for this school year. If you aren’t going to school or have any children that do, maybe you could think about the times you were in school and what your goals were like back then.
Maybe instill some sense into yourself based on your answer. I’m kidding. Feel free to answer. I’m not coercing anyone to participate by any means nor are you obliged to.
If you’re interested in my goals, read ahead.
School is underway. Insert parents saying yay and many students saying nay. It will be a brand new year packed with surprises.
The start of grade 11 (for me) is looming ahead and everything will be a lot different this year.
These are the things I want to happen:
  • Be nicer to everyone. Frankly I don’t do that enough.
  • Get some nice grades I can brag about. Maybe I do this too much?
  • Walk around more confident. I’m a senior now.
  • Do something memorable. Not anything dangerous, stupid, or dangerously stupid but something worth remembering five years from now.
  • Totally ace my math course. That’s just how I roll.
  • Get more active. That can’t be too hard considering I have dance, fitness, and yoga classes this year.
  • Find a new hobby. Considering what I do already, I may just stick to experiencing activities of interest.
  • Push my body to the limit. Let’s break my personal push up record. Aiming to do at least 55 or more sometime this year.
  • Throw around some gargantuan words that will confuse everyone. Ha, that will get them good. Show them not to mess with writers.
  • Last but not least, make it to grade 12 scratch free. Meaning not fail a course or a few, not get suspended or expelled…you get the picture.