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If this isn’t nice, What is?

by Kurt Vonnegut ]

I received a copy of If this isn’t nice, What is? for Christmas. It is a collection of Kurt Vonengut’s graduation speeches at various universities across the country. I am receiving my masters (MASTERS???) of Business (BUSINESS????) in advertising come May, so the gifter thought it’d be an appropriate read.

I love Kurt Vonnegut. I always see him as a wise uncle that I never had. He inspires me to live with more humility. He inspires me to be a better person…after all he is a humanist.

I really enjoyed reading this book. Even though there are few speeches in between with similar themes running through each of them. They are valuable at any stage of a graduate’s life.

But! If you are itching to buy a collection of something of Vonnegut’s… I recommend his collection of letters much more. It is an amazing read. You’ll learn that he’s every bit genuine in his real life as he is with the public and media.

I hope to update this blog a lot more…though it feels bleak.

Posted: January 17th, 2015
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margaret atwood lecture: writing the future

i’m all concerted out. i just went to way too many shows and didn’t enjoy enough of them in past few months. Even still, I skim through all of the emails that ticketmaster sends me in regards to up coming events in my area.

and something interested, it was a margaret atwood lecture called “Writing the Future”, writing and future are two things that are constantly on my mind. So yes, let’s go. I bought two tickets, one for me and one for my friend for Thursday Nov 22nd. I was excited and instantly ordered a few Margaret Atwood books on amazon. For one thing, despite my idea that im well read and an erudite in “literary” things, when in fact i’ve only read one Margaret Atwood book and it was Oryx and Crake, a mandatory reading for my grade 11 English class.

I can tell you that I liked it though, very much so.

excuse the instagram-ness of the photos, but honestly i think it adds authenticity.

The event was held at the Chan center, a hall that I’ve passed numerous times as it was located in my alma mater. I was supposed to graduate there, but you see, I just didn’t give enough of a damn to hear a lot of names to be read out loud and wear a black gown.

We arrived early, about an hour earlier than the event and decided to walk around the school. We returned to the hall about 15 minutes before the start time and found the center to be extremely busy and crowded. What? It sold out?

We had to scurry up two extra floors just to find seating. Blegh, they sold the tickets to high school students. by the way, they are reading jonothan safran foer in their class, Eating Animals of all the books. gag.

i sat next to one of them, after the usher told me to move twice, because i was leaving seats in between other people. it was really stupid as the row did not fill up. i really hate that, if it was that crowded obviously i’d move, but if there were no one around then what’s the freaking point?

okay my university was pissing me off still.

the event started promptly, this ain’t no kanye west concert. my friend joked whether we could get margaret atwood t-shirts after the show .i told him no, we probably couldn’t.

margaret atwood finally appeared after 20 minutes of random thanks of sponsors and programs. i had initially thought it was some sort of lecture tour. but no, it’s just sponsored by the university of british columbia and some other thing and well i didn’t pay attention so i couldn’t tell you what went on before she got on the stage.

margaret atwood is very tall, and she wore a red scarf and floor length black top and skirt. it was hard to see because i was so high up. here’s a shitty photo to compensate.

given the title of the lecture i was hoping there would be a lecture on writing and what writing means in an increasingly digital world but no no, she talked mostly about zombies for about an hour.

she’s funny though, very witty and the deadpan style of humor translates extremely well with her voice but i wished that she had talked about writing.

she ended the lecture with the idea that we must never lose hope for the future. because you know, even in case we become zombies even though we’re unlikely to become zombies.

then came the Q&A…
i think this could have went really well, if it weren’t a bunch of overzealous students asking specious questions about nothing….
Margaret Atwood had to ask what quite a few times because your dumbass questions didn’t make sense!!!!!!
only one person asked one question about writing and he was a douchebag about it.

anyways, after that i got a bunch of books signed, had to wait an hour though.

not a big deal but she looked so tired when it got to me. i almost felt bad that i brought so many books but then again since i already brought it i thought i’d follow through. she was nice about it but you could tell that the 3 hour time difference was not helping ….

anyways, it was fun and an unusual experience
i also ran into my grade 11 english teacher.. hehe ^^

Posted: November 23rd, 2012
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What 50 Shades of Gray taught me about writing

Even though I didn’t finish the trilogy and didn’t think too highly about the whole thing. What I did read, and my constant and upsetting thoughts about the entire situation with it being the best selling paper back of all time taught me a lot, and it made me realize a lot about writing that I wouldn’t have ever FULLY realized with the pure biased readings of great works (biased as in: this is great, i love this, this is …great isn’t it?)

I never seem to be able to trust my own judgement when it comes to a novel or any piece of writing really. I can’t seem to grasp the difference between good and bad. No, I’m not saying that 50 shades is good, I am definitely not saying that. But there must be something to be said about it, it’s ..sort of a phenomenon, albeit a bad one in my opinion.

I enjoy some classic works and I cannot even seemed to finish some. I bought a copy of Gravity’s Rainbow out of a rather enthusiastic love for the cover design and the fact that I need like $15 more to get free shipping at Amazon.com. I bought it and haven’t touched it since. It is a difficult reading, one that I’d rather not tackle at the moment at least.

Even though I don’t have a great authority to say what a writer does or doesn’t do. I have come up with a few obvious realizations upon my reading of 50 shades and the aftermath.

A writer writes to be read, most of the time. A lot of the times, a writer probably also writes to make oneself suffer, because writing hurts, it hurts your pride, it hurts your brain, it hurts your innards, it just goddamn fucking hurts. And for some reason, a lot of writers think they should suffer, they deserve to suffer, and through their sufferings they might achieve something. Or they are already suffering and they must escape their suffering through writing. But the point is, a lot of the time, the uncomfortable life makes a good writer.

It is a little bit different with fanfiction writing. I have written fanfiction and I have read fanfiction, and that shit is all about pleasure. You write for the love of the story, the characters, the people that are looking forward to your pieces in 2000 word bite sized chapters, they leave enthusiastic comments and you adjust your story line to their liking or disliking.

It’s fun.

And you get instant results.

I keep forgetting about the fact that writing is supposed to be fun. I am not suffering necessarily but a lot of the times i am not having fun when I am writing. I am always trying to be someone I’m not when I’m writing, does this sentence look good with that? Is there enough goddamn symbolism in the tree, will the reader get it, will it make them feel stuff?

Is sad good? Is sad bad? Is funny good? funny is good, but funny is un-graspable when I am sad too, but I am supposed to be sad because I am writing right?

I am not having fun when I am writing and I’ll bet you anything that E.L. James was having fun when she was writing 50 shades because people were giving her positive feedback (I assume) and that the story was fun for her.

Secondly,

no matter what you’re writing, how great these sentences are individually, the novel cannot be good if it doesn’t have a plot. I enjoy writing plotless things, because sometimes I’d rather think up a beautiful sentence then come up with a great story.

I am the type of person who enjoys writing about the middle of a moment, fuck beginnings and endings and plots that need sense made. I like moments. I like a glance into someone’s life as they drink a canned beer at the bottom of a slide in the middle of the night. I’m always curious about that person. But i am not all that curious about how that person got there or where they are going to be later. Ironically, I am not someone that lives in the moment, I think too much and doubt too much and I am always stuck in the middle of nowhere….

But unfortunately, for a novel writer, you must write about beginnings and endings…

That’s the other main thing that I fully realized through 50 Shades, albeit it being mostly a piece of shit, the plot actually stacked together fairly well, even though it is a contrived piece of shit with the worst characterization that I have seen…since ever! The plot is what kept the readers going.

My friend, and I quote, “it is a love story” and the surprising, “the story is so GOOD”
A lot of the times, I’ve read books that had a captivating story with a fairly weak writing style. YET WE KEPT GOING, because we wanted to know what happened next….

and that’s what I need to work on.

Even though I think I knew all of this before as my first novel was called plot less, I really fully realize this now.

But one person from the internet (portugal) that I know that read the novel told me it made her cry and that the ending was poignant so fuck yeah!

okay … alright, good afternoon ….

Posted: July 29th, 2012
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50 shades of gray + 77% of 50 shades darker

the whole thing, it just kept on getting worse and i’ll explain why beyond the reasoning of , this is the biggest piece of shit i have ever laid my eyes on

I forgot why but one day my friend strongly recommended it to me. She reads a lot of different types of books, mostly fantasy and apparently, romance. She told me that out of all of the romance books that she had read, this had an excellent story line and that despite all the b d s m sex, it is a LOVE STORY. No, it’s not a love story, even Twilight had a better love story and that says a lot.

Alright, sure okay, maybe I should believe her. By the time of her recommendation, the horrendous writing of 50 shades had already been plastered on all sorts of different feeds. It’s bad, but just HOW BAD?

I later found out that it is basically Twilight fanfiction, so I eagerly asked my friend, so it’s like a vampire named Christian and a human named Anastasia?

No no, she insisted to me, there’s no vampires in this. So how is this FAN fiction?
Apparently that doesn’t matter, other than the fact that it was popular on the internet and now that it is a hugely popular best seller.

Earlier today, I read on some website, that E.L. James, the author makes $1.5 million dollars a week from the earnings of her book, and that it is currently no.1 on Amazon’s top 100 list (i checked, it’s no. 1 – 4) And that combining the sales of all of the other books on the amazon best seller’s list, all the way through to place 1000, add them all together, it doesn’t even outrank 50 Shades. So that means, 50 Shades of Gray the trilogy out sold the top 1000 books on amazon.com

WOW, that’s one popular book.

So I decided to read it, it’s a very VERY easy read and you can basically skim through the entire thing and still get a very good idea of the story without even have to try.

After I read 50 shades of Gray, I actually didn’t think it was THAT bad, a lot of it is laughable but it’s not THAT bad. The story isn’t that original and the characters aren’t fantastic, but sometimes people just need someone to kill some time.

Ana as a character is fairly believable, Christian is believable too, his estate on the other hand, is not.

I could ignore a lot of the faults of a book because sometimes they aren’t nearly as apparent if nobody points them out to you. I skimmed it with lightning fast speed so a lot of the typos didn’t jump out at me until I went on this website, which is a fantastic website if you want to make fun of 50 shades of gray http://50shadesofsuck.tumblr.com/

So now that I’m almost done 50 shades darker, why aren’t i going to stick it out and finish the whole thing? I’ll TELL YOU WHY!

1. I hate Ana, I god damn fucking hate Ana. It pisses me off more because the main character in my first novel is named Ana, not short of Anastasia, just ANA because we are cool like that (more on why I hate Ana later).
2. Nobody blushes that much and still have enough blood to be pumped through the body.
3. The way christian talks ‘business’ on the phone, why does he never fucking finish a sentence?! Because there’s no business on the other line.
4. Ana bites her lip so fucking much that she should definitely have overbite by now.
5. The fact that in Darker Leana? didn’t shoot Ana when she had the chance.
6. For a guy that makes $100000 an hour, why is he driving a fucking Audi? Why is the only car in his repertoire Audis? If Audi paid to be in the book, please, fire your marketing director right now.
7. “i love my ipad”, no Ana you sound like a douchebag
8. the fact that Christian insists Ana use a blackberry for all their “secure” emails, come on Christian, for a smart guy you sure are stupid, RIM networks are not secure.
9. WHY DOES EVERYONE DRIVE AN AUDI?
10. More product placement: “i love my macbook” “i just checked email on my macbook” ……………. why why why why why
11. everything that Ana wears (later on) is from neiman marcus, pshawww Christian, don’t you know that Barney’s New York is far better and that there is one in Seattle?
12. Ana doesn’t want to work and support herself but definitely willingly accept the car gifted.
13. the Audi gets trashed and Chris (too long to type out his name) gives her a Saab x____x
14. every single one of their fights are identical later on.
15. Chris, for a dominant, you aren’t very dominating.
16. Ana, for a supposedly defiant and innocent girl, you sure sleep with him a lot, or at least, you seem wayyyy more horny than he is AND HE’s supposedly into the weird shit!
17. How many times can you compliment a girl using the same words before she gets bored? “Oh Ana, you’re the smartest, beautiful, confident, surprising..etc”
18. here are some more specific parts that really bothered me.

given the fact that this is like a sexed up version of a chick lit.

the type of character that ana is, she should be so giving and nice that you are starting to wonder if she’s not right in the head. but for someone that’s so brave and kind and giving to Christian, she is one stuck up bitch.

“Great car, sir,” he mumbles as he hands over the keys. Christian winks and gives him an obscenely large tip. I frown at him. Honestly.

so it’s okay for him to shower u with money and stuff but he can’t even TIP people? Ana’s a huge hoarder when it comes to this and it is apparent in several places in the book. I started highlighting them because well, someone has to!

Ana was supposedly poor or at least not rich, but when she starts living together with Christian she looks down on people QUITE a lot. When they go and buy the Saab she really looks down on the car salesman.

Troy Turniansky, the salesman, is all over Fifty like a cheap suit. He can smell a sale.

19. the complete lack of sympathy Ana has for …well…anyone that’s a woman! (this is what I realized, Ana is a woman hater)

her best friend, Kate or whatever, who basically disappears to Barbados for most of the books, was more than generous to Ana in giving her a place to live because of course god forbid our heroine live in a shit hole and isn’t rescued by her rich friends. It’s so strange that Ana feels weird about taking hand outs from Christian when she’s been doing that for her entire college life.

Ana complained that Kate was being too nosy and “getting in the way” even though in my opinion at least, that Kate was trying to be a good friend and giving her a push that many of us may need to get through an embarrassing/tough situation…

Things get serious when one of Christian’s ex-submissive try to kill herself because she loves Christian sooooo much. And of course she decides to do this by sort of putting Ana in basically no danger at all. I felt bad for encouraging the use of violence but I wished she had killed Ana, man I would applaud this book if that happened.

But of course not, there needs to be more instant orgasms!

When Christian chooses to stay with his ex-submissive after she tries to kill herself, hurt Ana this is what Ana thinks.

Angry at me? Surely not. Please – No I feel like he’s slapped me hard. Why does he want to stay with her?

GEEZ ANA, I don’t know! Maybe human empathy? MAYBE Christian feels bad that he made her this way, for making her a submissive? YOU EVER THOUGHT OF THAT YOU SELFISH BITCH?

Also Ana says Jeez 1.99786 million times. she says it every time she’s confronted with a poor person or a woman that might get in the way of her undying love for Christian and vice versa yet they constantly have to “get into fights” to prove it to each other “by leaving” and then the other person would “fall apart” without them and so on.

Here is Christian explaining to Ana why he chose to stay with the suicidal girl.

“To see her like that – so different, so broken. I care about her, one human being to another.” He shrugs as if to shake off an unpleasant memory, Jeez, is he expecting my sympathy?

bitch, this bitch man.

some more inappropriate use of Jeez here…

I can’t. I know that if I do, I will burst into tears. This is just too much to absorb. I’m like an overflowing tank of gasoline – full, beyond capacity. There is no room for any more. I simply cannot cope with any more crap. I will combust and explode, and it will be ugly if I try. Jeez!

the author is british, maybe she doesn’t fully get how Jeez is used in a sentence? It’s not used in a situation where you feel too many emotions, it’s mostly used by spoiled rich brats.

20. The technology, omfg it’s sO NEW!

this is the scene when Ana gets into the new Saab w/ Chris. omfg I can’t believe they bought a Saab!

“You can play your iPod and mp3 discs as well as CDs on this,” he murmurs.

first of all, why is he murmuring? WHY is he murmuring to explain something like this? BTW: mp3 discs …and CDs are the same format….normally if it can play MP3 discs, you can bet your 100k / hour salary that it can play a CD. goddamit Christian, i thought you went to a good school.

21. Selfish …and irresponsible.

“You’re very distracted. concentrate, Ana,” he scolds. “Accidents happen when you don’t concentrate.”

Oh for heaven’s sake – and suddenly I’m catapulted back in time to when Ray was teaching me to drive. I don’t need another father. A husband maybe, a kinky husband.”

I don’t know about you but when I drive I try to take into account that if I drive irresponsibly I could kill myself as well as others, this bitch, someone hike up her insurance. Well her rich bf can pay for it.

And many more situations in which Ana makes me cringe and cringe and cringe and hence I give up on the book.

I really really hate Ana as a character, and the whole story line as based on this dominant / submissive role that was at least interesting for a little bit then the author just gave up and Christian just wants boring vanilla sex (but all over the map) and LOVE AND TRUE LOVE. goddamit christian you aren’t gonna find it w/ this girl.

okay that’s it for now, i am sure there are more things for me to complain about but i’d rather not waste anymore time on this than i already have.

thank you for reading and to end this off

i have a quote

“I got over it, and I’m now a firm advocate of instant gratification, Carpe diem, Ana,” he whispers.”

YOLO ANA, HE’S TRYING TO SAY, YOLO

Posted: July 12th, 2012
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Admin stuff – new mobile verison

i dont know if anyone has ever tried to view this blog on a mobile device
but it’s super hard because of the way the theme is
but have no fear

i installed a mobile version of the site today!
so if you view it on your phone it’ll be a site that takes very little time to load and takes very little of your data!

also the reading will be a breeeezeeeee

Posted: February 24th, 2012
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instant like noodles

i started rewriting…….my book
and it’s alright i guess
to be honest i think i know myself a lot better the second time around
i think i tried too hard to be someone that i’m not the first time
visual imagery, there was too much of it, i tried too hard to create a world that didn’t really matter because the plot didn’t exist
i recreated the plot
i rehashed the characters into what would considered “better”
and their stories got more complicated
but still
I suck

sucking at something that you really want to do is really depressing

i want something good to come out of my writing
and i want it pretty badly
but sometimes i think my procrastination nature means i don’t want it that badly

the words aren’t flowing out of my finger tips and im at a stand still
AGAIN

you have to really just keep on going whether it’s good or bad……
i can’t see the good at all
i can’t see that it’ll get better

so i don’t know what to do

Posted: November 22nd, 2011
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P for Procrastinating

P for Plotting! Plotting, and timelining
or at least that’s what im supposed to be doing
i dont have anything to write today, maybe something will strike me later and ill write but right now i got nothing…plotttinggggggg

Posted: November 16th, 2011
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how to get passwords for current and future entries

for my own protection cause some of these writing needs to be submitted somewhere..so to protect myself i’ve used a password!

to obtain said password
you could

A: email me at emmaherself@gmail.com, tell me who you are, and your blog if you got one, tumblr’s fine too

B: @ me or DM me at @emmaherself on twitter

C: send an ASK to me at fuckyeahigavein.tumblr.com

…well ..yeah you’ve got choices

Posted: November 15th, 2011
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bad book, bad book!

having read only jonothan safran foer’s second novel, something something about the kid and the 911 thing.

he sells well, and he’s young and he’s all popular and famous and shit.

but he’s a hack, he probably is a good writer but he doesn’t give enough of a shit to try.

trying is uncool, yes, probably, but when you do something so bad that people still revere you for it. it’s just wrong, i don’t care how much money they give you and who is gonna star in the film adaptation of your second novel.

Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock, dammit I LIKE THESE PEOPLE. WHY ARE you ruining tom hanks for me?!?!”?!

okay alright, whatever

but this is shit, i don’t care what anyone says.

the library told me a book came in called Tree of Codes, hmm I don’t remember holding a book called that, all I have lately is Dorothy Parker stuff.

the entire book is a cut out. After some googling, he didn’t even write the words of the cut out!!!!!!! He basically deleted words from a book to create a new book of nothing.

i haven’t read it cause i don’t want to. I don’t want to ruin the library’s copy by ripping it into shreds as i want to rip it in shreds the moment that i open the damn thing.

i was walking home, frantically by the way, cause i wasn’t sure if i had turned off the stove.. and i started to look through the pages. okay, wait, when the pages stack together, do they make new words/pages?

that’d be kinda badass and very hard to execute. no it does not! it’s literally singular cut out pages and it’s very very hard read because you could have easily ripped any page…

instead of doing that he could have just done the tumblr thing and blacked out words instead…

like so…

THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN EASIER! and probably more cost efficient. This is good paper too by the way, these were good paper. They didn’t deserve to get gutted so they could become this. These paper had dreams, they wanted to be good, they really wanted to be good..

but goddammit, jonothan safran foer you killed their dreams.

so, it has like 14 reviews on amazon, a few people rated it 5 stars. they are pseudo intellectuals who do not know what they are doing.

calling it art? it’s cause you haven’t seen real art and hence you dont know what else to call this.

there are four 1-star reviews on amazon, and everyone of them was “found not helpful”…

whatever

let’s read the back

“Revolutionary” – New York Times

“Very, very cool…delightfully tactile.” – Vanity Fair

“….the most potent work of art that Jonothan safran Foer has yet produced.” – Michael Faber, The guardian

“a true work of art” – Erica Wagner, The Times

and a really long one by somebody called Olafur Eliasson, an artist.

these people are either lying or are paid to lie. of course it’s tactile, vanity fair! it’s a piece of paper, you can touch any piece of paper and call it tactile.

oh god, im tired and mad that this would get published.

im not gonna read it…i could just stare at nothing and get the same effect. it would probably be more profound.

Posted: November 9th, 2011
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20: Of Love and other Demons

by: Gabriel Garcia Marquez

argh i feel bad/….but then i rmb no one reads this so i dont

this too will be filled in at a later date!

i really want to read The last Cavalier by Alexandre Dumas

im a huggeeeee fannnnn off Napoleon!

i did my extended essay on him and i got a D because when you try to write a 2 month paper in 5 days, this is what you get…!
If you’re such a huge fan why’d u leave it at the last minute? Because…it feels good to procrastinate and it was assigned over summer what do you expect?

but it’s a huge book and i dont know if ill be able to finish it in a week! speed reading time!

Posted: August 28th, 2011
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