Okay, so I’m about 70% better and I’m doing everything in my power to get out as many of these today as possible. I really hope you’re all still enjoying them, because I for one happen to love writing for Old Man Logan.
** Masterlist: If you are ever in my masterlist and can’t find a fic I wrote, it’s probably because I took it off of there. I normally tag all of my fanfics under #Kayla Grace writes imagines so all of them should be under that tag!
This one was third place in my poll the other day, so here it is! I hope you all enjoy! Probably mostly angst.. Also Platonic. No romance here.
y/p – your powers
Requested by Anon: Logan and Laura find the reader and find out she’s just like them and on the run as well, so they agree to take her in. One night Logan and the reader are talking about their past and the reader becomes emotional and says.. “If I was a success, then why do I feel like such a failure?”
jonghyun: the one way from which makes me feel very confidently is… that i’m a genius in my handwriting. my handwriting is really bad. i’m also a left hander but i can write with both. i’m ambidextrous! i can write with my right but, when i do, most people are like: “ah …, so this is what your handwriting looks like when you write with your left”, and i’m like: “no?! that was written with my right hand?!”
I guess I always knew you would,
but that doesn’t make it hurt any less.
Just because I knew that you’d walk away,
that doesn’t mean that when the words left your lips,
your fingers didn’t curl around my heart and pull at the strings that held it together.
I feel empty-
Since you left,
whenever I close my eyes I see a silhouette of you;
I hear your voice bouncing off the walls in my head;
My eyes wander whenever I walk through the halls, searching for you;
My fingers constantly curl, grasping for the hands that they no longer hold,
Or twirl looking for the lochs of you hair that they used to nimbly run through.
Now that you’re gone I can’t walk around the same;
I can’t go through the halls that we used to.
I can’t head straight down the narrow sidewalk getting out of physics-
I have to turn right so I don’t hear the sound of your footsteps next to mine,
Accompanied by the ghostly floating remains of long forgotten conversations and laughs we shared.
I can’t climb the southernmost staircase of the new building-
Not without stopping on the third platform just before climbing the last flight of stairs to reach the third floor;
Not without feeling the fleeting graze of your lips against my own for the first time.
I can’t walk along the straight walkway that leads from the cafeteria to the red awning-
Whenever I do I stop at the second to last pole piling and hug my backpack straps a little closer,
Pretending that they’re your arms around me as you pull me in and call me a goof for checking to see if I could see you again later;
Always, you would say.
It’s a funny word.
It implies no end,
and yet to those after class meetings,
there was an end.
I saw you today, and you looked fine,
but I know you’re a fake-
I know behind that cocky, twisted, crooked smile, is an insecure boy who wants to be loved.
He wants to be loved,
but I believe he’s too scared to give love himself.
Maybe that’s why it seemed so easy to walk away.
Maybe some parts of you were slowly starting to fall for me,
and maybe that terrified you.
I memorized the words that you said to me that one day in February-
you called me a thief.
You asked me if stealing your heart wasn’t enough for me-
You admitted that I was on my way to doing that.
Just a little fyi,
I never stole it.
You built up a wall, pushed me out, and ran away.
I wonder who hurt you,
Who made you afraid to fall in love?
But that’s all just hypothetical.
Right now all I know for sure, is you’re gone.
You walked away.
You left me behind,
and right now it’s killing me.
The boy who was too scared to love (via @theworldseenthroughmylens )
Do you know if a script has ever changed from reading left-to-right to right-to-left, or vice versa? I had a thought this morning about a deluded southpaw emperor who changes the language just so he doesn't smudge his writing.
Greek was written in boustrophedon style until it settled on a single direction. Egyptian hieroglyphs were written in one of any number of directions, and they seemed to be fine with it. I imagine it wouldn’t be impossible, but it seems unlikely if the script is only LTR or RTL that it’d go to the other.
John Laurens fluffy headcanons for an s/o with anxiety?
Yo yo yo some John laurens hc’s would be 👌👌👏👍👐👌👌 fantastic rn
boss’ memo : ye!! i gotcha! <3 anon, i hope you don’t mind that i combined these !! also, i interpreted what you said as general hcs for john laurens, but if you wanted a part two for s/o headcanons, then i will redo this for you <3
if you sincerely hurt his feelings, he’s very obvious about the fact and will push you to apologize for what you did by bringing it up–though, given enough time, he steps back and tries to be the bigger person,,,
he has some problems with apologizing, though !
he’s left handed, but was made to write with his right–so he does everything with his left hand, and only writes with his right !
he’s very open to trying new foods and likes to bring home something he randomly found so he can try and cook it,,
draws a bit in his free time, likes to sketch clothing designs with hercules
he’s a bit of an adrenaline junkie!! ‘s why he gets into so many fights!
don’t bring him to an amusement park unless you’re ready to suffer the consequences…
although, he’s also content with just walking around and eating !!
he’s the one giggling at your look of terror when he points to the roller coasters
he has no fear,
he loves!! seeing people smile because of him !!!
trans boy john laurens, anyone ??
(i promised myself i wouldn’t do gender or sexuality hcs but i still went there,,)
with an s/o with anxiety
he likes to bring you comfort items !
got a stuffed animal that makes you feel better? blanket? want him to try and make your favorite food ? (quality will vary but he loves you and that’s the most important part because the food is made with love, so,)
he’s not very good at doing anything more than holding you and humming the first few times
when he’s more used to you having anxiety attacks, he tells you a funny story or something good that happened to him today while he hugs you !!
he sometimes says such sweet things that you start crying because of what he said
^ he panics, a little, when you do that
he reasons things out, has you explain your problem until the two of you can work together to diminish it
if there’s no problem and you simply feel stressed, he’s good at telling you how strong you are, how you are so much more than only your disorder, that you’re really incredible for fighting like this alone for so long before he was there to help you
he always asks if there’s anything more he can do for you, because seeing you in distress hurts him (he’d never tell you this outright, doesn’t want to stress you out any more)
he might get you to draw with him,
small doodles + he likes to draw a tiny him smooching a tiny you on the cheek–his notebook is filled with that exact drawing, it’s what he defaults to doing
he likes playing games such as complete the picture : you draw a line, and he draws a line, and maybe you draw a circle, and the two of you make a masterpiece together
he sometimes makes these into actual, detailed drawings that he excitedly shows off to you !!
“He’s not the one for you, I know you and that’s not you.” I laugh coldly and stare hard into the green eyes that I used to love so much.
“Really? You’re going to tell me who’s not right for me now? This is the first time you’ve spoken to me in months, after you left me. You left me for my best friend and you think you’re in the right place to tell me who I can and can not be with? I loved you and you broke me. There’s no other boy who could hurt me more than that.”
WAIT, You're writing something? And even better, you're writing Left Brain Right Brain?
I`m sure you`ve noticed me drawing Left Brain Right Brain all over the place, random scenes, situations, conversations which do and do not correspond with the song and those are all part of the book I`m writing. I put a lot of thought into these two halfs, the world they are set in, even the side characters and to be honest, I will never have the time to draw out the whole plot.
So now I`m novelizing it! I`m still on chapter two, and I have not a single clue how many there will really be, but I`m excited to try something new!
I’d like to really thank all of you who read that theory as well as those who came to discuss it with me, I had a great time during the last two days!
Part 2 is written for all the points I didn’t get to talk about in Part 1, as well as for providing answers to the recurring questions I got, for anyone interested. Please keep in mind that Yana didn’t create any plot holes with this chapter. So here goes.
Warning: spoilers everywhere and lengthy post. My bad.
1) Humans who can see Shinigamis
Whenever doing their job in the human world, I believe Shinigamis can either decide to be seen by humans and interact with them (like Ronald right before the beginning of the Campania Arc who asked Mey Rin where the passengers’ entrance was, or William who became a member of Noah’s Ark during the circus arc before leaving the day they all got killed) or decide to remain unnoticeable.
As shown in the Circus or Campania arc, Shinigamis often conduct investigations, especially before numerous murders taking place at the same time (Campania), since they have the burden to decide whether or not someone is to die or keep on living, and they can do so while being seen by humans (William and Ronald in two arcs) or while hiding themselves. I believe it’s probably easier for them to interact with humans during the investigations in order to gather information faster.
However, as Sascha pointed out, sometimes humans can still feel them even when the Shinigamis’ve chosen to stay invisible (Ciel being an exception here) and those people generally are close to dying. That’s all Sascha says.
Examples: - In the Campania Arc, Ronald wasn’t hiding himself on purpose (otherwise how was hesupposed to talk to Mey Rin?), neither was Will at the beginning of the Circus Arc. - Grell played the role of Madam Red’s butler, a human, so obviously they had chosen to stay noticeable to other humans’ eyes (even if they could easily disappear to go commit the murders as a part of Jack the Ripper, by becoming invisible). - The
Undertaker stayed noticeable whenever he was the information broker/mortician,
but he could also choose to remain unnoticeable like in Weston College and maybe
at the end of the Circus Arc when he’s shown watching the fire started by Ciel
I’ll also add that Shinigamis aren’t always seeable by demons when they’ve
decided to stay hidden: perfect example in chapter 103 when Sebastian didn’t
sense the 2 German Shinigamis, or simply when he never knew that Undertaker was
a Shinigami until he saw his eyes.
That probably depends on if the demon already faced the Shinigami in question
at least once (that would be how Sebastian sensed Will in the Circus Arc after meeting him during the Jack the Ripper case) and
how much he has to focus to sense them (he had faced Undertaker on the Campania Arc,
but remained unsure of the Principal’s identity in Weston until the reveal).
some rare people with special lineage (like Ciel) can detect Shinigamis even
though they’re not close to death yet.
2) Why isn’t Frances on
that family tree?
(Surprisingly, I thought people didn’t care at
all about Frances since she’s rarely been around, even if I think she rocks, so
that was a pleasant surprise ^^) The tree panel is
in reference to Ciel’s lineage, discussed by Ludgar/Rudgar and Sascha because
our MC just spotted them. So the tree shown is about Ciel, not the Phantomhive family.
Of course, Frances is Ciel’s aunt, his father’s sister so they share a blood
connection, but that tree only shows direct relatives and that doesn’t include
aunts, uncles or cousins. Direct relatives are siblings,
father, mother, grandparents and sometimes great-grandparents, the people who directly
transmitted blood to Ciel, and that’s
indeed what’s showing on Ciel’s tree. Claudia made Vincent and Frances, and as
siblings they have the exact same blood (assuming Frances’ father is Cedric
too). Then Vincent married Rachel and they had Ciel, so Frances and Ciel’s
connection stops at Vincent. She’s neither his sister nor his mother so
she’s not a direct relative and doesn’t
appear on that tree.
is of the simplest kind, basically because
it only shows direct relatives (don’t worry, that means Madam Red isn’t on
Rachel’s side of the tree either, Rachel’s parents supposedly are there though).
imagine that Yana had drawn Elizabeth’s tree: Frances’ name would show up, so
would Alexis’, Edward’s, Alexis’ parents’ and Frances’ parents’ but not Vincent
or Ciel’s name. As for Vincent’s tree: Frances would be there, their parents as well and the grandparents on the
Now I know
we don’t all have to agree about this tree, but do you seriously think Yana would forget about Frances, Elizabeth and Edward’s mother, Vincent’s
sister? Well, I don’t. :)
theorized differently that the tree was only showing Ciel’s dead relatives (Sascha and Ludgar are Shinigamis after all) which would explain why Frances isn’t on it and that’s actually a very interesting point. However, the two branches coming from Vincent and Rachel’s union are opening too much possibilities in that case, so I’m stopping there because I’m still hazardous on the details about this particular corner. It’s a theory to keep in mind though.
3) Claudia and Cedric’s
parents’ part of the tree.
In Part 1,
I wrote the possibility that Cedric and Claudia were lovers more than husband
and wife (which doesn’t mean that
Claudia didn’t have a husband on the side, if Cedric was the lover that is) because of the drawing differences between their branches and Vincent and
This was by far the weakest point of the whole theory, since indeed, Vincent’s
grandparents’ branches look more like Claudia and Cedric’s than Vincent and
Rachel’s. First I’ll
explain that part.
For me, it’s
mostly that, seeing how close Vincent’s grandparents’ frames were, Yana didn’t
have the place to draw the branches in between them, while she could draw the
junction between Claudia and Cedric (enough space) but chose not to. That’s fishy,
but since it’s definitely a matter of appreciation here, I can understand
people not agreeing at all with me.
were Claudia and Cedric married or not?
I think: trying to decipher Claudia’s parents’ names, I don’t think we can say
for sure whether “Phantomhive” is her maiden name or not. So starting from that,
there are several possibilities:
born as a Phantomhive (like Frances) or she wasn’t but she married one (like
Rachel). Again, her parents’ names are illegible so I’m being cautious, but since
we can see a woman before Vincent when Randall spoke of the Watchdog and his
predecessors in chapter 15, I’d say she definitely was the Watchdog before
Vincent, which would mean for me that
she was born as a Phantomhive.
I’ll try to
stay neutral though.
So if Claudia was born as a Phantomhive, Cedric either was her husband or her
lover (because even a woman heir to her own name wouldn’t be free to choose who
she’d marry); however if she married a Phantomhive Lord and then took his name,
that means Cedric was only her lover. Speaking with probabilities, that means
Cedric had more chance to be her lover than her husband (2/3 against 1/3), but
again you don’t have to agree.
Cedric is the Undertaker (my theory of part 1), the way I see this
character, a Shinigami who worked for a long time and then deserted, who has
morbid tastes and six other lockets
aside Claudia’s, I can’t see him married to a respectable woman who would need
discretion more than anything else to do her work for the Queen.
In the end it comes down to your own thoughts of him, but I don’t think he
would love like a normal man. He’s got interest and curiosity for humans, the
Phantomhive family in particular, and he might have been saddened by Claudia’s death
(regret and loneliness, mostly) which then lead the Bizarre Dolls project, but
I can’t see him married to an important noble lady.
why, I clearly prefer for Cedric to be her lover, if Cedric is the Undertaker’s
Bonus Question: If Cedric is just Claudia’s husband and a regular human, then who or what is making Ciel’s lineage special?
out when I was trying to find an explanation about Claudia and Cedric’s parents’
part of the tree after writing Part 1.
really check the original panel of the chapter to compare, but the right frame
above Claudia’s has a branch going higher while the frame on the left doesn’t,
which technically means that Claudia’s parent on the right had ancestors while
the one of the left didn’t (he or she
comes out of nowhere).
question here is, is it a mistake or was it done on purpose? - If you take the illegibly writing in these frames as a way to discard
Claudia and Cedric’s parents because they are not important and Yana didn’t
want to have to look for names or dates, then it was a simple mistake. - If you think Yana wanted to hide one of their identities because one of them
is important then it was done on purpose.
However, since it took the German Shinigami one look to notice that Ciel had a special lineage thanks to that
tree, then we can definitely assume there is something evident on that tree, and if it’s not Cedric himself (who’s more fishy than Claudia or Vincent with his frame half hidden), then it’s
got to be that upper left frame, one of Claudia’s parents.
Pushing that idea further, if we consider that Yana didn’t draw a branch above
that frame on purpose, that means that parent really comes out of nowhere;
and adding that to Claudia and the Undertaker’s link, his similarities to Vincent,
as well as Frances’ strength and Ciel’s lineage, then in that case, we can pretty much say that maybe the Undertaker is Claudia’s father.
So in the end,
is the Undertaker Vincent’s father or Claudia’s?
depends on whether or not Shinigamis are
dead and soulless humans or beings that have nothing to do with them.
- If they
are dead humans now acting as reapers, then technically they have a birth and
death date like any other humans, and coincidentally
Cedric’s dates are hidden (in that case Cedric = the Undertaker). [EDIT: except if, when the human becomes a death God, theirrecord is “erased” in order for the human to start their new “life” as Shinigamis]
- If they aren’t former humans at all, then that upper left frame having no
family above it is understandable since Shinigamis can’t have a familial
background (in that case the Undertaker = Claudia’s father).
Make your own opinion by choosing the theory
For me, taking
Sascha’s words in consideration (“I’m so happy to be a Shinigami” meaningthere
was maybe a time they weren’t one) makes me think they’re dead humans turned into
Death Gods (and it would also explain why their physical appearances are so
close to humans’).
Also the Undertaker left his people around 50 years ago and while he could have
had intercourse with a woman while still being a Shinigami, Claudia was born 60
years ago (we’re in August 1889 she was born in 1830) so my guess is that he came to know about her after deserting, and he got
interested in the Phantomhive family upon watching her acting as the Watchdog
(a woman having such a powerful position at that time wasn’t common, aside from Queen
Victoria, so she was probably a sight to behold for him who found humans so very
interesting…). So basically, for me the
Undertaker was Cedric K. Ros-.
Thank you for
reading all that if you were brave enough, and like last time, feel free to
So. It’s a New Year, time to begin a lot of shit, some of which will be a miss, but some of which will stay with you a long time. One of the traditional resolutions is to start a diary, and some of us feel like getting a bit fancy, writing with a fountain pen. So here’s to all of you who’d like to try it, just a few tips to avoid the most common mistakes.
DON’T BUY THE CHEAPEST FOUNTAIN PEN AVAILABLE.
You don’t have to take a mortgage to buy a nice pen but lots of those you see in supermarkets are intended for kids, at least in our country, and it is fully expected that they will get broken and/or lost within a few months. So the quality is not really high. If you are going to buy something, you should be able to use it comfortably. At the same time, don’t aim too high if you’re not sure you’d like it - some people don’t like the way the nib slides along paper, I have even met some that dislike the sound. Keep this in mind when trying to choose your writing instrument. Probably the best is going to a normal stationery shop, explaining to the salesperson what do you need, and get them help you. If you can’t for various reasons, browse e-shops carefully.
CONSIDER YOUR STYLE.
I am not talking here about colours and shapes you prefer but there are other things to keep in mind. You can have a metallic or resin body (many more but these are the most common ones) - where are you going to keep your pen? Do you have an orderly case or are you like me, and it will live on the bottom of whatever bag you are currently using? Is it possible that you might sit on it accidentaly? Do you have the habit of dropping stuff? Are you chewing your pens?
And then we should consider if you prefer holding a thin or thick shaft, can you write with miniatures or are you more comfortable with something longer in your hand? What about weight? Also, if you know you tend to press heavily when writing, consider the nib. There are even glass nibs; so far I’ve only seen them on antiques, and they tend to leak more ink than contemporary nibs but my friend assures me they are beautiful to handle. I wouldn’t know, I am a heavy-handed person who prefers long, thin, and heavy shafts, so I use mainly metallic bodies.
Another thing to consider is if you are left-handed in left-to-right writing system (or right-handed in a right-to-left one); the ink may smudge and your writing hand might be constantly stained…
IF YOU DON’T PLAN TO USE IT OFTEN, CONSIDER A DIPPING PEN INSTEAD.
Ink dries. When you don’t use your pen, it can dry inside the nib within a week or so, and clog it. If this happens, dismantle the pen and rinse it thoroughly in lukewarm water. You should get to the point where the water is flowing freely through the nib and it’s clear. Sometimes you can dip the whole nib part in a glass of clean water overnight and this can help to unclog the old ink. If it doesn’t, consider the price of your pen and either get it repaired professionally or buy a new one, sorry.
So if you know in advance you’ll be using your pen very rarely, buy a dipping one and don’t forget to clean it before putting it away.
Also, when you know you won’t be using your pen for some time, flush the ink and rinse the pen before stowing it away.
NOT EVERY INK IS COMPATIBLE WITH EVERY PEN.
Let’s skip all the talk about colours and let’s consider thickness. Ink, Indian ink, and calligraphy or illumination ink have different thickness. Indian ink is thicker, so using it in a normal pen might clog it. But there are calligraphy pens designed to work with these, or again, artistic dipping nibs.
Inks also have different lightfastness, means how long does it take for the ink to lose all the colour, and become illegible. The longest lightfastness have the so-called document inks.
ALL INKS ARE ACIDIC.
So rinse your nibs regularly. If possible, wipe the nib with some non-fuzzy fabric or a piece of buckskin after every use (not a chance for me, see the bottom of my bag line). You should rinse out your pen at least when refilling the ink or changing the ink cartridge.
This is also why most of writing nibs are gold-plated, or coated with some other non-reactive metal. If your nib is corroded, get it changed or buy a new pen, depends on price, and emotional value of the pen.
NOT ALL PAPER IS CREATED EQUAL.
Some will soak too much of ink and your lines will be too fuzzy, some will let the ink soak through to the other side, some have special coating which will not take ink well. You will want to experiment. If you are creating a chronicle (or expect your memoires to be found by your descendants or even want to be able to read that poem some years later), look for “acid-free” on the book or diary, as well as higher weight of the paper (the XX g/m2 info; Moleskine diaries are around 70 g/m2, FYI). And choose a light-fast ink.
IF YOUR NIB IS LEAKING TOO MUCH, IT’S DAMAGED.
You may get some blotches, especially if you press too hard or unevenly, or if you are talking with your hands and forget you are holding a pen, but if you get too much, or the flow of the ink is simply unstoppable, it’s time to change the nib or even the whole pen. Again, sometimes the pricier ones can get repaired, but. Yeah.
A FOUNTAIN PEN WILL LEAK IN HIGH ALTITUDES.
That’s actually why ballpoints were invented. You’ve been warned. If you absolutely must take your fountain pen with you on that flight, flush out the ink or remove the cartridge, clean it out and transport it empty or enjoy the impromptu tie dye.
HOW TO REMOVE INK STAINS FROM CLOTHES.
1) Blot it gently with a blotting paper or tissue or toilet paper. If the stain is dry, moisten it with water, let it sit for a while, then blot all you can, as with the fresh one. DO NOT RUB.
2) Treat it with something clear and acidic - lemon juice, white vinegar, etc. Let it sit for a while, about 1-2 hours.
3) Blot it again.
4) Wash as usual.
5) Some inks react better to diluted ammonia, clear alcohol or fresh milk. Try, let sit, wash.
All this is pretty aggressive, so it might eat the dye of your clothes along with the ink. You may want to try this out on some folded hem or some not easily seen piece of the garment first.
HOW TO REMOVE INK STAINS FROM YOUR HANDS.
Wash your hands, then rub lemon juice or vinegar on them. If this doesn’t help, you can try clear alcohol, oily creams or rubbing it off with scrubs, peelings or that rough stone you use for your heels. Don’t go to abrading your skin too fast though, sometimes it can take up to 15 minutes to dissolve the ink.
Funnily enough, sharpie ink is also ink. You can dissolve it by rubbing alcohol (pro tip: hand sanitizers have very high percentage of rubbing alcohol ; you can even use them as fire starters - just rub a bit on a piece of dry wood and light up the match), sunscreen, baby wipes or makeup remover wipes. Have fun.
So. These are the most important things about using a fountain pen, I guess. I hope this helps…
In my previous two posts (here and here), I outlined some of the tenets of creative non-fiction writing and provided some tips on how to translate those gobbits of wisdom into a real live, in-the-flesh, super-fantastic personal statement.
But I’ve saved the best for last.
Mmm. Wait, sorry. I got distracted for a second.
Now that you’ve got some tools in your college essay toolbox, here are some exercises to help get you started with the actual writing of the thing.
Exercise 1: The Thirty Random Facts List
This brainstorming exercise is pretty much what it sounds like, but let me give you an example of what I mean by “random.” I don’t mean it in the sense of: “that grilled cheese gif is totally random.” (Although it is.)
I do mean it in this sense:
“I once poured soapy water all over the kitchen floor so I could make an ice rink in my house” (from a student who used to be a competitive ice skater)
“I don’t like to match my socks” (from a student whose essay ended up talking a lot about the importance of diversity in her life)
How about one more?
“I like to imagine I’m shooting orcs and trolls during archery practice” (from a student who loves The Lord of the Rings and is a competitive archer. Duh)
Q: What’s the point?
A: The point is to fish out some of the more unique and interesting details in your life that might be useful as you craft your story. Most of your random facts probably won’t make the final cut of your essay-movie, but the one or two that do will likely add a lot of color and “pop” to it.
Q: How do I know which details to use in my essay?
A: Use the ones that show a specific quality or value that you are developing in your story (for the “ice rink” student above, the qualities that her anecdote evokes are imagination, ingenuity, and independence; for the “socks” student, the values are an appreciation for diversity and offbeat creativity).
Even if you don’t use the details you list, they serve the very important purpose of highlighting particular qualities and values, not to mention quirks, that you most likely will be developing in your essay.
Exercise 2: Your “Lifeline”
This brainstorming exercise is essentially a timeline of your life, your lifeline. Maybe you’ve seen those biographical timelines that sometimes appear in the back of anthologies of a particular author’s works? No? Just me?
Well, nevermind. Yours can follow a simple pattern, like this:
Start with your birth, but fill in the rest of the timeline with meaningful memories or significant events, like “moved to the US from China” or “broke my ankle playing soccer.” Most of the timeline should cluster around your middle school and high school years, since that’s when meaningful things start to happen with more frequency (or at least that’s the way it feels, right?), but also because your essay will be telescoping in on those four or five years much more closely and extensively than on your childhood years.
The end result might look something like this:
OK, it doesn’t have to be this epic, but why not let it all hang out? The boring old template I shared above is way less interesting and absorbing than this wonderland of liveliness and color. Get into the spirit of the thing and make it a project. At the very least, your essay should evoke this kind of vibrancy and drama, so think of this exercise as the “map,” or even the “screenplay,” of your essay-movie.
Exercise 3: The Values Diptych
What the heck is a diptych?! Aside from being one of my favorite words (it just barely misses sounding like an expletive, i.e. “don’t be such a diptych!”), it was originally a painting or tablet in two hinged pieces representing related scenes, often religious or ritual in nature, like so:
Your diptych will take this principle and break it down to its essence. Take a sheet of paper and draw a line down the middle. At the top of the left column, write “What I’ve done.” At the top of the right column, write “Qualities / values I possess.” Now, start filling in the space in each column. The activities and interests on the left should map onto the qualities and values on the right. Draw lines connecting the activity with the value/quality, and you now have an image of how the things you do speak of the person your are. Simple as that.
Q: What’s the point?
A: The point is to visualize the way your activities and accomplishments and passions and hobbies manifest your values and characteristics, your personality.
What you do + why you do it = who you are.
Your essay, your personal statement, should be a word-picture of the person who is you. Many schools, like the UC, don’t interview applicants, and many of those that do offer only alumni interviews, which are conducted not by admissions counselors but rather by graduates of the institution. These alums will report back to the admissions committee, but the fact remains:
Your essay is your best chance to present yourself as a three-dimensional, flesh-and-blood, coherent, interesting, vibrant, curious, intelligent individual.
The Values Diptych is a great way to start to see how the pieces of your life, outside and inside, on campus and off campus, fit together like complex, many-sided puzzle pieces.
Exercise 4: Desert Island Objects List
If you were banished to a desert island, what would you bring with you that keeps you connected to home? What objects, ideas, memories, experiences are more than mere objects, ideas, etc., because they carry with them feelings of significance and familiarity and comfort and happiness? Because they represent who you are?
I would bring my 1975 Gibson Les Paul Custom electric guitar, not only because it reminds me of the years I spent as a musician in my teens and twenties, but also because it connects me to my dad, whose passion for 60s soul and R&B, and music in general, infected me at a very young age and set me on a path that would shape who I am today. I taught myself to play listening to old Albert King blues records and joined my first band when I was 15. I’ve been writing songs ever since. Obvi, it’s got both real and symbolic meaning for me.
I’d also include a little yearbook photograph of my wife when she was in tenth grade. I didn’t know her then, but I like to look at it and imagine what it would have been like if I did. The pic is also kind of goofy, like most high school photos, and makes me laugh and reminds me of how warm and loving and adorable she is, so I keep it in my wallet and look at it whenever I need a mental hug.
I’d also put my memory of traveling cross country with my family when I was 11. It was the most epicly awesome trip ever. We ate a ton of great food (ribs in Memphis! fried ravioli in St. Louis! roadside burgers in Flagstaff!) and I got to see so much of the country. It’s one of my favorite memories, and represents how close I am with my family, how traveling and food and music and sing-alongs have defined who we are as unit for my whole life. It also represents the fact that most of most vivid memories are tied to meals I’ve eaten.
Whether or not any of these “objects” ends up in your essay, getting them down on the page and reflecting on what they mean to you and why they mean that to you will inevitably help you discover the building blocks of your story.
Hey, everyone! So I was requested by @livingbeforethirty to do a DIY planner sticker tutorial with Microsoft PowerPoint. It’s cheap and fairly easy. I’m not sure if it can also be done on Slides (Apple), but you can surely try :)
So this is how it happens, you wake to find her gone. It should be a surprise but deep down you know it’s not. She’s brighter than anything you’ve seen before but it hides behind dark words. She’s quiet and she’s calm but sometimes she cracks and light pours out of her eyes. She flashes across your own black darkness and it blinds you. She’s brighter than the stars, hotter than fire, and through the beauty of it all, it just stings.
This it how it happens, you blink and it all disappears.
She’s here and then she’s not and that’s what the girl has in common with the lightning.
Right, so… My scanner. It’s terrible. But my writing. It’s also terrible. So I hope you can at least see the left hand notes alright, and I know it’s kind of hard to tell, but the entire right hand is played one octave higher. Anyways, I decided to make some sheet music for the Elegy that Saeki plays because I like it and it’s short. The left hand also killed me I had a lot of fun! (I regret not writing this in 8/8, but I guess there’s no big difference. I also realize that I could have probably fit it all on one page if I had tried hard enough…)
Also, here’s my demonstration of how it sounds. Feel free to use these Sheet Music for your own purposes, and make the appropriate change if necessary! If you also play it, I’d love to hear it!
This is an entry-way of how understand what’s right and centrist. No one never be ambidextrous, but that’s fine. The Western world has been shaped on the Christian belief that writing with the left-hand is Satanic. There, you remember your teacher slapping the pen from your left hand with a ruler, when you were learning to write as a kid. When I switched schools, my new teacher told me it was impractical–that is, the way I leaned to the table, my face close to the paper, with my left hand holding a pen curled above the words I was writing. Draw the hands you wrote with, and twenty-something kids drew traced their right hands on the blackboard, so I worked hard to write with my right. Though, in some sports, I’ve had the advantage of having known my left hand than others; I can box and fence with both hands with ease. Doing things with my left hand doesn’t feel natural, anymore, but it feels familiar. There is the acknowledged history, the nervy soul. It can take a god or a gauntlet to remember these scriptures.
A/N: Wow, all I can say is that you guys are amazing! Thank you so much! It’s almost five in the morning and I just finished writing and editing this chapter because who needs sleep.I had some fun writing your back story, which I warn you gets a bit graphic. I promise the next chapter will continue with the actual episode! Anyway, enjoy reading!
not a translation request but an advice request. how long did it take you to get to the level of korean where you could translate the things you do? did you do a year abroad? i've been learning for nearly a year now and i really like it but the more i learn the more i am aware of how little i know. any advice on learning quicker? happy 1st anniversary!! I really appreciate your hard work :) xx
Well, because I took Korean as a major in Uni so it took me 3 years \O/ But it depends on your ability and the environment, if you lived in Korea, I’m pretty sure you will be able to learn it quicker or surround yourself with Korean people (basically forcing yourself to speak in Korean). I did tons of reading during the 4th year, because I took a reading course, translation course and I had to use Korean sources for my final dissertation so that really helped me with reading and translating, the more you read, the better because you will get used to the format, how Korean sentences are formed.
I did do a year abroad, I took language classes in KU, 4 hours a day, 5 days a week. The teachers spoke only Korean in classes, they can speak English but they don’t want us to speak in any other languages other than Korean. And that really helped me to improve my speaking, we also had to do a lot of speeches/ presentations (it was a nightmare D:) The thing that I regret is that… I surrounded myself with Chinese speaking, and English speaking people lol so I didn’t speak much Korean after the classes. OTL If I could go back, I would choose to hang around with Koreans that spoke no English at all, but that’s a bit hard because KU is filled with smart people lol.
I understand what you mean, I still feel that there are so much things I don’t know. That’s why I decided to take MA Korean Studies. Anyways, I will give you some tips but it probably won’t help you to learn quicker because learning languages takes time and effort, unfortunately there’s no short-cut D:
Speaking: You can do a shadowing exercise, I’m sure you can find some audios on Korean learning websites, or if you have a CD for learning Korean, that’s even better. Basically, you repeat what the person says on the CD at the same time or after they’re done. Usually, they start off speaking quite slow and then they do it normal speed. Another one is to put a pen or pencil between your teeth, bite on it and pronounce the Korean words in a loud voice, it sounds weird but it worked on me, after you’ve done it for few times, take out the pen and pronounce the word again, it will be much more clearer and better. (I think it helps to relax the muscles.)
Listening: This is my favorite because I just watch/ listen to Korean dramas and songs, or Korean radio shows, just play it in the background, you don’t have to understand what they’re saying but you can get yourself familiar with the sounds and the flow. If you have Korean friends, that’s even better, just practice listening and speaking with them :).
Writing: You have to write a lot ㅠㅠ but you need someone to correct your work, you can ask a friend or maybe find yourself a penpal? I have this penpal for nearly 5 years now, we would help each other cuz he is studying Chinese and I ask him about Korean grammar and etc. I saw quite a lot posts on italki, where natives corrects people’s writings, you could sign up there and I’m sure someone will help you out. When you’re writing, read out what you’re writing to see if it sounds right.
Reading & Translating: When you read, read out loud. Underline the words or grammar points that you don’t understand. If you understand it, try to translate it. When we first started translating in the first year, we had to do it from word-to-word, because the teachers had to check if we know what we’re reading. But you don’t have to, if you understand the sentence, translate it into your own language. We had to do a portfolio in the beginning (to show the extra work we’ve done besides the assignments) and obviously I couldn’t read Korean newspapers at the time, but I cut out the comics and some short articles about idols and I would circle out the words I knew and tried to translate it. I also print out lyrics of kpop songs and did the same thing haha ;; You need to practice and don’t worry if you make mistakes, because that’s how we learn, we learn from our mistakes. :)
Learning vocabulary and grammar: FLASHCARDS! I would make my own flashcards, I know there are apps but I prefer writing it out. I can remember it better if I write down the new words. Another exercise you could do is, write down the Korean words on left and the meanings on the right, cover up the right side or the left side to see if you have memorized it. Or you can mix it up and link up the word with the meaning. When you learn new grammar, write out sentences using the new grammar and practice like that.