Browse the Garden

Saturday, December 31, 2011


One of my teachers called me ambitious this year. I was starting to think that it wasn't true, but now I feel more ambitious than ever. Not only am I applying to regular jobs, but I am entering writing contests, reading up on major writing companies and giving myself classes on query letters, outlines and summaries. So here's the honest truth. I'm ambitious when I want to be, and cowardly when I don't want to deal with things. It's a known fact that my life has wrapped around through many struggles and trails. I've also done my research and discovered that all successful people were ambitious and took great risks to get where they wanted to be. It was their way of learning who they were and what they could do to make a difference in the world. Well, I'm determined to be successful, in fact I'm hell bent on it because of all those years where I kept quiet and never let anyone know what I wanted and what I needed. As I have just graduated and I'm determined to do big things, my new strategy is "Look out world. Here I come!" I might not get there in a month, a year or even a century, but I'm coming and I'm going to achieve the goals I've set for myself, regardless of the challenges and obstacles in my way. This is a warning. I'm tired of sitting on the sidelines, and now I'm going to be out in the game.

Friday, December 30, 2011


They can be cut.
They can be torn.
Lost and raveled,
ripped and worn.
So many strings,
so little strength.
Do they have colors?
A specific length?
Is life a web
of patterns and strings?
Stories and memories
of broken things.
The past is the past.
Or so they say.
Can I cut the strings?
Watch them fall away?
The strings I choose
to keep and mend
are the bonds of family
and the support of a friends.
But where's my string?
The bond of the heart?
Where does it stop?
Where does it start?
Is it the string of a kite
at the mercy of the wind?
A ball of yarn
that can weave and bend.
Ties are everywhere
but can I truly know
the ones I can tie
and the ones to let go?

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The song behind the story

Every now and then you find a story that speaks to you. Dengeki Daisy is one of those stories for me. It's truly amazing how one little detail can become an important element in a story. The song "Time after Time" by Cyndi Lauper is the element in this case. People have done some tributes to the story using this song and I found one in particular that was very nicely done ^_^ Enjoy the mood music

(Icon by 365daysafter)

Words of wisdom for the worried heart

"If you don't give up on getting there, then you're not on the wrong road. . . If you worry about it, think about it, eventually pick a road and walk down it. Then there's no way it isn't connected somehow to the place you're looking for."
Dengeki Daisy

It's funny that the first time I read this quote, I actually took it on the surface, but there is a deeper meaning behind it. There are times when you wonder if you chose the right path, especially after graduation and other huge steps in life. But in reality you will pick a path that benefits you somehow. It may not be the path you expect, and it may even give you doubts about your decision, but ultimately you made the decision to go down that particular path for a reason. This reason may not reveal itself right away. I'm beginning to learn this as I reflect the past when I made some difficult decisions. Not only does this quote talk about the benefits of making a decision. It is also talking about the importance of the decision itself. Everything that makes you who are is based on decisions you've made and the true desire to achieve a goal, whether big or small.
This may seem like common sense, but it is easier said than done. Other obstacles get in the way. Regret, self doubt, grudges, criticisms, and many other emotions can cloud your judgement and make you forget who you should really listen to in order to make your decision.
It's pointless to worry about whether or not you chose the right path or made the right decision, as long as you trust in yourself and accept the lessons you learned along the way.

(Icon by o0Yukino0o)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Curse of Doubt

"It's not the power of the curse. It's the power you give the curse"

I watched Penelope today, one of my favorite modern day fairy tales. This quote, close to the end of the movie, really stood out to me. During the film, Penelope constantly puts herself down and doesn't believe that her curse will ever be broken. She puts herself below others and doesn't believe in herself, until she breaks free. Once Penelope leaves everything she knows and takes control of her life, her confidence builds, and she finally has the power to overcome her own curse. She had the power to do this the entire time, but she only realized it once she believed in herself and started to pursue what she wanted in life.
It's a very valuable lesson, to discover the abilities you already have and do something about your doubts. Doubt has always been a big curse in my life, but sometimes I forget that the doubt is created by myself. Doubt is an obstacle that can be difficult to overcome when little or no self confidence is involved. The first step to conquering doubt is to realize who controls your doubt. Penelope discovers this when she steps out into the world and makes something of herself.
Another thing about doubt, it's not easy to overcome. But if Penelope had never conquered her doubt and discovered who she is, the movie would have had a lame story. I heard somewhere that you control your own story, even if you feel you have no power over it, but only you can change your story when you don't like the direction it's going in. I hope that a few people I used to know will learn this, because self doubt is not a fun element to live with for the rest of your life.
The first step is to believe that you will get there.

Monday, December 19, 2011


Dancing whispers
Reoccurring memories
Echoes of what can be
And what will be
Make your life
Shine with your dreams

(Collage made with my photos of the Disney College Program, screenshots of Disney movies and a recent picture of Fantasmic)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Writing Prompt 28: New Year's Resolution

Prompt: In the next year I'm going to...

Work hard to achieve my goals
Never give up
Learn from my mistakes
Put the past behind me
Believe in myself more
Keep things in perspective
Accept what I can't change
Do what I can
Write, write, write
Do my best to become the person I want to be.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

What's really important

"Never, ever lose sight of
what is really important."
James -Tiana's father
The Princess and the Frog

When things go wrong, big or small, I always forget to remember what is important. The roof over my head, the family I care for, the friends I cherish and the good times I've had. This quote may seem small and simple, but is is a deep and enlightening thing. My dad told me that growing up is not just taking responsibility for your actions, but having perspective on the situations you get involved in. I'd like to think of it as a peer review session. Take everything with a grain of salt. Understanding the perspective of others can be challenging sometimes, but it is worth it in the long run. Letting the small things ruin the big picture is an immature act that can damage instead of heal you. I look back on all the mistakes I've made and I realized that yes, I did learn something and no, I won't make the same decisions in the future. But you can only decide how to deal with these things by having the perspective to define the small jabs and the big punches. I guess this is another way to put the past behind you. Once you remember what's truly important to you, you can put things in their place and even forgive yourself for the mistakes you've made.
The important things can replace the grudges, irritation and obstacles you face in any situation. It may not be easy to draw them out, but it is worth it to take a step back and observe the situation by remembering what's important to you. I'm beginning to understand that life is far too short to dwell on the past, and life is way too important to take for granted. It's all part of growing up and accepting who you are. Remember what's important and you can get through any tough spot in your life.

Happy Music from Dream High

This song has been stuck in my head for a while, so I thought I'd share it :)

Awesome moment in the Dream High Korean drama! A real lesson in delivering a song to someone.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Never forget who made you who you are

I watched My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic a little while ago, and a quote from Rarity stood out to me: "No matter where you go in life, never forget that you are the product of your home and your friends. And that is something always to be proud of, no matter what."
It's a good statement, especially for those who have just closed a chapter of their lives and started a new one. The real world can be intimidating, and you will face more challenging things than the assignments or projects that you have overcome. That's why you should never forget who you are, and try to become someone you're not. This includes more than just a social, but a professional reputation. When certain areas in your life are overwhelming, you must have a solid ground to stand on. That's why self confidence and knowledge is so important. It keeps you going when life becomes difficult. It gets you through tough times, overwhelming decisions and challenging obstacles on whatever road you take. I believe that if you are confident with who you are, proud of where you came from and knowledgeable about the defining aspects of your character, you can achieve your goals and be content with yourself. After my graduation yesterday, I thought about this a lot. There was a moment where the commencement speaker told us to appreciate the support we had from family and friends, because that support is what got us that far. It is very important to understand that you don't achieve goals and get through life on your own. It is the support around you that keeps you moving forward, and motivates you to get up when you're knocked down. This may seem far-fetched advice for graduates, but I understood what the speaker was talking about.
You lose yourself when you ignore the parts of your life that shape you. Even difficult memories and challenging assignments are learning experiences and all part of life. Another thing that the speaker said was, "good leaders understand that there is always something to learn". That's very true, if you think about the powerful people in the world, and the great minds of the past and present, they never stop learning. Once you believe that you don't have to learn anymore, you have set yourself up for more lessons than you can imagine. There's a certain comfort to realizing that you won't know everything. If you did, you wouldn't learn, and change from your experience. One lesson to learn is that you are who you are because of the people around you. You may not realize it, but even the smallest conversation will effect you somehow, and influence a decision, big or small in your future. Role-models, parents, siblings, friends,family, teachers, class mates, customers, all people have an important role to play in your life, so it is important to remember the people you're proud of and know the parts of your personality that were inspired by them.

(Picture by stormchylde and a gift from my friend Kim ^_^)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Writing Prompt 27: Commencement Speech

Prompt: If you were chosen to give a commencement speech, what would you say to your classmates as they move ahead to their next challenges in life?

My friend Miriam told me that every graduation speech has the same pattern and mentions the same elements. Hope, Dreams, Goals and Life. It's true, graduation is about all of these things. By this point in our lives, we have reached some goal, to graduate, and now we are ready to make a more challenging goal, to get the job we want. So, the hope in a graduation speech is a motivator that encourages graduates to realize that as long as you believe you will get there you will. It's all about perseverance. You must have a motivation to hope that you will reach your goal. You must have a goal in order to reach your dreams. It's all a process of trial and error, living and learning. I've heard other commencement speeches that mentioned courage. Courage is required to achieve your dreams. The important thing that you must remember, at least from this moment in your lives is not just that you have graduated, but that you have taken your first big step into the real world. Graduation may be a rite of passage, but it is also a stepping stone toward the future you choose to build. But the most important thing to remember, as you go out in the real world is to persevere. The difference between successful people and people who choose to settle, is that they got back up when they were knocked down. If there is one thing you should remember from this experience in your life, it is to get up when you're knocked down. This is not easy, but remember, it is worth it in the long run. People admire those that never give up and keep pushing toward their goal. Those people will go where they want to go and they will achieve their dreams. I know that you've heard these words before, possibly from teachers, parents and mentors, but I encourage you to listen because they know what they're talking about. Reaching a goal and achieving a dream is not an easy thing, but you should know that. After all, you have passed one of the most difficult obstacles in a person's life, College. Congratulations and never forget that you have the ability to achieve whatever you want in life.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Writing Prompt 26: Rest and Relaxation

Prompt: How important is rest and relaxation to you?

It's kind of funny how this prompt popped up, since I haven't even thought about how important rest and relaxation really is. In fact, I decided to take a break from studying to blog, and got this prompt ha ha. Anyway time to answer it.

During crunch time of my last semester, I actually felt guilty every time I took a break, which wasn't very often or long. People had to convince me that I was doing something beneficial by relaxing, and I couldn't get any more productive work done if I continued pushing myself. I had to reach my goal, and I had to reach it as quickly as possible. I wouldn't even accept that it wasn't possible for me to continue working without rest.
Well, I got a big dose of the value of rest on one of the most difficult and challenging days of my school year. I had four giant assignments due, the first act of a script, the entire script, a handout and presentation and a ten page essay. Unfortunately the night before, I freaked out, broke down and didn't get a lot of sleep. I had never been so overwhelmed and disappointed in myself for things not going according to plan. Finally, after I had cried it all out and took a few deep breaths, my mom told me to just take the day one thing at a time. Once she told me that, I realized that you don't have to meet your goal right away. These things take time to complete and it will not always go according to plan. Once I recognized that it wasn't just my assignments, but myself that I was trying to complete in a hurry, I had to take a step back.
It's true that you can be too hard on yourself, but I was going way too far. I was mentally beating myself up not just about assignments, but my social life, my future and my growth. I was so stressed out to begin with, and I was convinced that I hadn't grown up enough to handle many things life threw at me all at once. But the true reason I couldn't handle all of these problems was because I had not given myself a break. A break from school, a break from social life, a break from criticism and a break from my own sadness and frustration.
So, I think this week, I really learned first hand the value of rest and relaxation. I expected way too much of myself and only made my disappointment worse when I didn't meet my goal. I did mange to get everything done that day, but I never would have been able to do that if I hadn't taken it one step at a time.
Rest and relaxation is extremely important, especially when you have a lot to get done. You have to recharge to make the effort you need to meet your goal. When you rest or relax, you don't stress about anything, you can put it in a drawer or even say "I'm going to step away from this for awhile." That way, when you come back to your life, project or situation, you can look at it from a distance and improve it. Relaxing doesn't only mean taking a break. It is an opportunity to exist without constant worry or pressure. Sometimes it's okay to forget that major assignment, that family problem, that social conflict and that major goal you haven't reached. Enjoying yourself and allowing yourself to just be for awhile is just as important as reaching your goal and improving who you are.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Growing Up

I just saw the Muppet Movie and there was
a quote that really stood out to me. "It's easier
to believe in others, it's harder to believe in
yourself. That's what growing up is all about."
I think that's true, at least for me. I've spent
all of my life believing in the people around me,
but I rarely believe in myself. I think that saying
about you being your own worst critic is very true.
As my last semester in college draws to a close, I
have learned more about myself than any other semester
and I have started to be aware of the changes people go
through and the difficult decisions that shape your future.
Life is all about testing yourself to learn who you are.
Discovering your strengths and weaknesses is part of growing
up. And, it's often the strengths that are forgotten during
difficult times.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Importance of Character Traits

In my Children's Literature class, we discussed
the importance of Harry Potter's decisions as they
define his character. These important decisions
ultimately decide who Harry is as a character and
how his decisions impact the person he believes he
is, versus the person he actually is. We were also
asked which house in Hogwarts that we belonged in.
We had to make this decision based on the strongest
character trait we believed we had. For me, this was a
tough decision. I don't believe in labels, but I find it
interesting that your most powerful character trait is one
you know right away. I feel like your most powerful
character trait may take a long time to realize. During
the making of both novels and screenplays, the character must
be defined through powerfull actions and difficult decisions. In a
sense, the way we decide the definition of a character is the way
we learn to define ourselves. Harry's decision to be a Gryffindor
determines who he is throughout his story. Strong and obvious
character traits are the elements that define a character. This is
also the way we define other peoples' personalities and how we
define ourselves. The sorting hat functions as a self consciousness
that can only be developed over time. The most powerful characteristics
that we have can only be revealed when we are honest about who we
are. This is not always easy to do, and becomes an internal conflict for
Harry. He questions this decision for awhile because it is a very defining
moment. It may take years for someone to learn this about who they are,
but it is this internal struggle that makes a character relatable to the reader.
If the character must find who they are, it is more comforting to understand
that everyone must go on this journey, or avoid it. It is a powerfull and
important choice.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Writing Prompt 25: College taught me . . .

Prompt: College taught me . . .

College taught me that I'm still not grown up. There are many ways to write an essay, with the creative way being only one option. People will change, and you can't really do anything about it. Support isn't necessarily a bad thing. Some teachers care about their class, and some don't. Time is precious. Life is writing. Life is learning. Some things aren't always what they seem. A budget is a good thing. Some people grow up, and some don't. Some things can only be learned through experience. You have to find balance between who you are and what is expected of you. You can't make everyone happy. In order to stand on your own, you have to believe in yourself. Presentations in front of people are not really optional. If you get a meal under 10 dollars, it's a good day. You should enjoy your major and be proud of it. Getting involved in clubs are not required, but they do have lessons of their own. Studying is done best with chocolate and music ;). You do need to make time for yourself, even if it is only five minutes. Teachers take classes too. You can learn a lot about yourself, just by reading and exploring a story. The more entertaining you make your day, the easier it is to get your work done. Patience is very important during your last semester. Everyone has to find balance between educational and personal life. There will be classes that will challenge you, more than academically. The older you get, the more you reflect on memories. The choices you make determine how useful your education is to you. There are a variety of people out there. Each person has a fear, goal and dream. It's okay to take things at your own pace, you don't have to be like everyone else. Do what you love, apply what you've learned and do your best. You must find your own definition for who you are. College taught me how to manage my time, take value in what I read and work hard towards my dream.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Importance of Conflict

I have had a lot of conflicts lately, and most of them have changed at least one aspect of my life. In the past, I did whatever I could to avoid conflict, including never voicing my opinion. Then I met someone who was very similar and realized that ignoring how you feel isn't healthy. We go over in writing class that conflict is a crucial part of a story. Only through conflict can the characters learn about themselves. What they want, What they need and What's in their way is all determined by conflict. In the myth quest, a character must overcome obstacles to grow, and they must also endure conflict. Now, here's the interesting part:internal conflict is just as important as external conflict. The fight between heart and mind, right and wrong, good and evil that takes place inside. This type of conflict determines who you are and who you want to be. I've had a lot of struggles with that lately. Mainly because I am reaching a crucial part of my life, graduating college and preparing for the outside world. I still have a lot to learn, but I have also learned many lessons through conflict.
That doesn't mean that conflict is easy. There is a reason that people run from it. It is unpleasant, annoying and at times confusing. Some conflicts start before you realize they have begun, others are obvious and important. An internal conflict works in many ways to develop your personality. Memories of pain, joy even can spark a conflict between your mind and your heart. For me, this is especially true when life gets rough. Suddenly when things are complicated, unclear and confusing all around me, I feel like I have lost who I am. Similar moments have also occurred with people I know, some moments where I failed to realize it in time. Even so, conflict is very important. Just as a series of obstacles creates a hero in literature, overcoming fears and being honest can shape you into the person you want to be. It's a tough call when conflict is necessary and when it isn't. Similar to the battle between heart and mind, usually a conflict can be driven by one or the other. But how you deal with conflict, and how you handle life can be an important part of you are. I'm slowly learning this, as I deal with conflict after conflict.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


My Dad tells me life is all about choices. The choices we make,the choices
others make, and the way we imterpret those choices.
People use your choices to define you and base their opinion on you by deciding
what your choices mean to them. But, yout choices can also determine how you feel
about yourself. Whether or not you give yourself credit or give others credit.
Whether you allow yourself to get angry, happy or sad. Whether you let others get
angry, happy or sad. All of these choices define who you are and determine who you
will be. The way you view yourself is determined by the choices you make, the honesty
you have to yourself, and the honesty you have to others. I'm currently learning about this
both in my life and in the stories I'm writing. I've had to make some tough choices. Choices
that determine my future, my personality and ultimately myself. All of these choices are important,
but there is one thing I've learned. When you make these choices, you must choose the one you
will regret the least.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Writing Prompt 24: Writing as Therapy

Prompt: Is writing a form of self therapy?

I believe it is. During the most stressful, irritating and aggravating points in my life, I always write. I write stories, poetry, songs, journal entries and of course essays. I still write these things, and I still learn from them. In middle school, when I had about three major issues in my life, two of which I felt I couldn't handle at all, I began writing a story about a character who had no idea who she was, why she had to deal with life and who she could actually trust and believe in. As I wrote that story, I became more and more connected with the main character. As she grew and changed, I did. She began to trust when I decided to reach out. She learned how to deal with things which I slowly discovered as well. She became a very important character and gave me a new insight into myself. When life was difficult, I could write about this character and learn how she coped with it. When I had no idea what I wanted, she would, and I gradually discovered myself through my character. This is also true of my poetry and songs. I recently looked back on them, and discovered that even though the words were not the same, each poem and song was about the same topic. In more than fifty different poems and lyrics I was writing about my longing to believe in something, anything to help me cope with the world around me. When I started going to college, I picked my essay topics in relation to the growth and development of characters, the myth quest and archetypal symbolism. I honestly remember, as I was writing my Alice in Wonderland essay, stopping for a moment and realizing that I wasn't writing just about Alice. I was writing about myself. Even if Alice was the topic of my paper, I discovered that I had similar situations and learned from them, or ran from them. Alice ran from the Jabberwocky, while I ran from connections and intimacy. Emma learned from her mistake at Knob Hill while I learned from my choice to drop good friends. More and more I become convinced that writing is therapy.
In my novel class, we talk about the relationship of the writer and the writing. The novel and the author are always connected by some aspect in the story that the author is trying to understand about his or her self. The reason we write is to explore the truth about ourselves. While fantasy may not be related or even similar to real life, the character a reader connects with is always empathetic through similar experiences. In many ways, we write to learn. We learn about the world, ourselves, life in general and we learn what we want. Writing is a wonderful way to express how we feel, what we think and what we observe. It is more than a craft or art, it's a way of life. Practice, routine and discipline all apply to writing. Through writing we discover new aspects of ourselves, understand our mistakes, learn to make choices and, of course, learn to cope with life. Stories are used to learn. Songs are written to express emotions. Poems express thoughts and feelings. Essays express opinions. All of these pieces of writing reflect the writer. The concept of "voice" becomes the writer's tool to express themselves through writing, regardless if the writing is a story, song, poem or essay. The topic they are writing about matters to them in some way and can be further explored through writing.
There have been arguments that the writer's voice is their subconscious mind, which they tap into now and then, creating images or messages to understand the world around them. Writing is processing. It polishes thoughts, emotions and messages for the writer and communicates them to the reader. So, yes I believe writing is a form of therapy, and no matter what you write, the act of writing clarifies something in you. It could be a problem you are trying to resolve, an opinion you wish to express, an emotion you can't ignore and a thought you want to explore. Writing can help you discover and understand the parts of your self that seem very unclear on the surface. It is a way to organize the chaos in your mind and heart. Writing is therapy.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Take a Break

Don't forget
to relax for awhile
Listen to music,
laugh and smile.

Take your time
for a moment in time
Even five minutes
can be sublime.

(photo: Cataract Lake)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Writing Prompt 23: Descolliding

Prompt: Make up a new word and then give it a definition

Descolliding: A (V. N. ADJ.)(v) the action of deciding based on two or more opinions of others and yourself. (n) situation in which a decision collides with others' perspectives of yourself (adj.) A modifier used to describe a moment in which a person must choose who they will be and weigh people's opinions and their own.

The word comes from "Decision" and "colliding" as well as "description". It represents the moments in life where you reach a crossroads and have to make a decision that determines who you are and where you belong. Most descolliding moments are chances to grow and change. They often occur during a period of self discovery. When you are faced with a descolliding moment, you can't think of what anyone else wants, you must only think of what you want and go for it. The important of descolliding is a rite of passage where you either learn to be true to yourself, or allow others' opinions to collide with your life.

picture: The two sides of Mulan. Mulan has a descolliding moment when she decides to replace her father in the army.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Winter's Change

Snow gently falls as a crisp breeze moves the branches of the trees. Stars wink off and on, their light a comfort in darkness. As the ground becomes softer, lighter, the night blurs. Thoughts take over; wishes and dreams. I close my eyes and listen. I listen to the falling leaves as they tumble through the air. I listen for the sound of falling snow, the answers to my questions. I listen to my steps, heavy and light on the white path, leading anywhere. A winter’s memory? Maybe. It’s a regular walk through the forest. A journey through my mind. Music all around me, thoughts that can be cruel or kind. Sometimes the walk is cold, and sometimes the walk is warm. Gentle breezes or harsh winds, a light snow or a storm. My mood doesn’t really matter. Snow will fall all the same. The changing of the seasons can be wild or can be tame.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Once Upon A Time

Once Upon A Time is a new show that aired last Sunday night on ABC. I recommend this show to anyone who loves fairy tales. The characters are really interesting, as the protagonist Emma Swan claims to be an orphan, and a boy named Henry claims to be her son. The setting of the story is a place called StoryBrooke where all the fairy tale characters live, but don't remember who they are. With an underlying theme of hope, ABCs Once Upon A Time brings the magic of fairy tales to reality and devises a new way to live happily ever after. The first episode is also available on Itunes. I look forward to watching more of this show :)

Here's the trailer:

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Writing Prompt 21 : Five books that changed my life

Prompt: Five Books that changed your life are . . .

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

This book has to make the list because it is one of the most memorable of books read to me when I was a kid. It was probably THE book that got me into reading and writing. I remember Gollum's riddles most of all :)

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

This is a favorite classic of mine that really explores the good and bad traits that people can have.

This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen

This book welcomed me into the realities of life that can be changed through your perspective. It's my favorite of Dessen's and I can really relate to Remy.

Fruits Basket by Natsuki Takaya

This manga series taught me so much about going through tough times in life. It will always be my favorite manga.

The Count of Monte Cristo
by Alexander Dumas

This book got me through High School, and helped me deal with my own thoughts of revenge and anger with my situations.

Books are important teachers, so I really thought about this prompt. The interesting thing is that many books we go over in college don't have the in-depth personal lessons that Fruits Basket has, or that Sarah Dessen's books teach. I have some classics in this list because the memorable thing about reading them, mattered through my personal experience with the book. The Hobbit was my childhood, Count of Monte Cristo and Pride and Prejudice were my teenage years. So now, I open up this prompt to the readers. What books changed your life?

Monday, October 17, 2011

A Lake Of Stars

A lake of stars
winks back at me.
All the people
I want to be.
Dreams I've kept
Moments I've wept
Loneliness and laughter
Pieces from here-after
Thoughts jumbled
Words mumbled
Lessons learned
Confidence earned
Will I shine?
Is the glow mine?
My hand trails the water
The lake is cold
The stars out of reach
must be bold.
For that light to grow
twinkle and change,
something inside
Honors how strange . . .
How strange life is
depicted in sky
While I sit here
and wonder why.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Lessons I've Learned from People

So I just finished reading a really interesting books series and went to a couple of classes where we discussed the influence that people have included in literature. I've read in a few writing books that you write what you know, and use your experiences to your advantage. In a script I'm currently writing for my Script class, one of my themes is the importance of learning from the people in your life. Here are a few things I've learned:

No one in the world is exactly like you, no matter how similar they act or think
It is important to let loose and have fun once in awhile
Confidence and happiness are attractive personality traits
You must work hard to reach your dreams
Standing up for yourself is not being selfish
Life will throw you a curve ball, but with the help of your friends, you can hit a home run
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you cannot be successful in helping someone who doesn't want it
Patience can be very useful in stressful situations
Everyone goes through an identity crisis, a moment of self doubt, and a transformation
Always stay yourself. Don't try to be anyone else
Stories will stick with you whenever you need them.
"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent" Eleanor Roosevelt

What lessons have you learned from people in your life?

Monday, October 10, 2011


Prompt: I regret . . .

I regret . . . too many things. This is a major obstacle in all areas of my life. I can regret an action or inaction I made years ago. I can regret something I said or did five minutes ago, a day ago, a second ago. So when I received this prompt from the prompt generator, I realized that maybe I need to review some of my regrets and learn from my actions.
It's interesting, I watched The Last Unicorn again recently and there's this line that the unicorn tells the magician.
"I am no longer like the others, for no unicorn was ever born who could regret, but now I do. I regret. And I thank you for that too."
I always wondered why the unicorn thanks the magician for something she regrets. Her regret is of course becoming a unicorn instead of staying human and living with Prince Lir. I guess that action no longer makes the unicorn like the others, but it also gave her an opportunity to live.
Most of my regrets involve the opposite. They are actions I took or didn't take to avoid living. And they still haunt me in many forms.
Some of my regrets will only be resolved in my mind. Actions I took years ago. Running away from an opportunity to learn something new or take a risk to discover a new part of myself. These are the regrets that pop up from time to time when I'm watching a movie, reading a book or witnessing someone who comes to that same crossroad.
One direction is the adventurous path, where they take a risk and learn something new. The other road is the coward's route that is paved with familiar comforts.
In most of the books I read, and movies I watch, the character picks the adventurous route and discovers an element of self confidence or learns a lesson. The recent even I witnessed, that person took the coward's route and made me realize just how much a regret can haunt you.
Because I am graduating this year, and have already tried so many new things, I feel that I am again on that same crossroad, and the regrets I have of my past build up to the point where I must make a rash decision. I find that instead of always taking the comforting route, I take the adventurous route in some things, and the coward's route in others. I suppose that is normal. It's life after all. Some fears are not that big of a deal, while others can cause psychological trauma for years.
So why did I feel like responding to this prompt? Because I do regret. And what I regret are major things that I could have decided to risk, and learn from. These regrets may leave me one day, when I realize that I can take that adventurous route and not feel threatened or scared. Maybe it's okay to regret. As long as the regret motivates you to make better choices in the future.

I invite my readers: What do you think of regret? Can it be a good motivator?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Following your star

It was a true honor to see Donald Samson in Boulder, CO last night and hear him talk about his Star trilogy. Authors of published works are often asked the same types of questions by their fans. What is your advice for writers? How did you come up with your ideas? Can you relate to any of your characters? It's funny that I have heard these questions so often, I can usually figure out how the author will answer. For example: their answer to the question "What is your advice for writers" is usually "Write. Write all the time."
This particular author had a little bit of a different answer. He said that anyone who enjoys doing something should "follow their star". Following a dream is one thing, but accomplishing a dream is an entirely different story. As I sat there, watching the event unfold, and how the author reacted to certain questions, I imagined that it can be a simple way to achieve a goal, but it can also be complicated. There are many hardships when someone is on the path to achieving a dream. They must make sacrifices. They must learn to compromise, and so on. But I think the hardest of these challenges is to continue their motivation and "follow their star" so to speak. In many ways, this is the true test of an artist's motivation. The ultimate goal of an artist is to follow their muse and set their course determined upon what truly matters to them. This is no easy task. Money is involved, time, education, relationships etc. It is a difficult road and an overwhelming obstacle.
If there is one word to describe the attitude of an artist, besides creative, it is ambitious. An artist goes above and beyond and then some. Always working and never quite satisfied with one project, moving on with another. Still, an artist must follow that path toward their dream, stick to it and earn their way towards their star.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Writing Prompt 20 : Who am I?

Prompt: Write about a question that looms in your mind right now.

Who am I?
This question is not easy to answer, and it takes a long time for anyone to understand what it means. Everyday we go about our lives, discovering new talents and making new discoveries about our identities. We can be defined by name, family, occupation and social status, but as time goes on, we learn that we can't really answer this question with that simple of an answer.
Awhile back I posted a quote of my own, "It doesn't take a day to discover yourself. It takes a lifetime." I still believe that this is true. You won't know who you are until you experience life and learn from your actions. But even then, can you truly ever find an answer to this question?
I was never able to fit myself into any category at school, work or even within my family. I shared many different interests with a variety of people, and I drifted from one social group to the next, never truly feeling that I belonged. So when I ask the question, "Who am I?", what am I really asking? What am I? What do I do?
So many strange definitions of people can be used to define someone, but it never covers the entire scope of someone's identity. Another factor to include in reflecting over this question, is the simple fact that people change. These changes can also reform our identities and cause us to define ourselves with what we know.
For example, I know my interests, hobbies and my name, but does that tell me who I am?
I know this is a philosophical question, and I have probably asked it before. Still, whenever I am faced with a major change, thrown out of a comfort zone, or preparing for a new way of life, I often ask this question . . . and wonder at the answer.

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Stay yourself
But still have fun
Don't dwell on the past
What's done is done
The only way you can truly know
Who you are
Is to just let go
Live in the moment
And be who you are
As long as you dance
you'll go far.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Point of Peter Pan

I feel like clarifying this, because I just got back from a class that literally picked Pan's character apart as a violent and abusive bully. This is not the point of Peter Pan. Peter himself is representative of two things, childhood and denial. Peter is a child who wants to be a child forever. His extreme case can often be a complex tragedy. He forgets things, people and make believes so often that he has no constant in his life except to make believe. He is also incredibly lonely because he has no family structure, hence why he creates one. Wendy's character represents the transition from childhood to adulthood. This is why Peter and Wendy cannot be together. During the story Wendy is sitting on the fence about whether or not she wants to grow up, but she eventually realizes that she must grow up, as all children must. This realization is a rite of passage that anyone child or adult can relate to. I don't think that children's literature should be dissected with such a biased view that it has to have some sort of "adult" or "mature" element. To do so seems to defeat the purpose, because it is an immature act in of itself. There, my rant is over.
Peter Pan is a very interesting piece of literature that has lasted so long because it contains a universal theme. Everyone must grow up. I think in all honesty that the reader envies Peter and would love to go back to childhood and not have to worry about so many complications in life. But Peter also is portrayed as a complicated character who sort of lives a lie. In all honesty, Peter is an empathetic character who is in denial of reality. This type of personality is a major fault, but it also makes him endearing. He does care about others, but always masks it when he feels like his pride has lowered. He is human, and yet he isn't human. He doesn't age, but still has faults. So to sum this up, I love Peter Pan, both the character and the story. I think it hits home in the rite of passage in growing up.
The point of Peter Pan's story is that all children must grow up, because if they don't they will be stuck in a constant cycle of forgetfulness. Even so, I still love Peter Pan, because I feel that childhood is an important part of your life, and it doesn't need to be dissected into "adult" minds.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Everything Happens for a Reason

Painful conflicts
Playful fun
Daily events
Between the moon and the sun

All those times
meaningful and sad
goofy and happy
frustrating and mad

No matter what happens
you must always know
that you effect others
wherever you go

Learn from the bad
Appreciate the good
remember the important times
and forget what you should

Do what you can
with what you know
and your true self
will soon show

Everything happens for a reason,
But it is up to you
What you take from it
and what you should do

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Past

Words of wisdom from the Lion King. This quote is one of the most memorable parts of the film for me. It's amazing how, even when you're older, this movie still has an effect on you. Rafiki's words may not have made sense to me when I was younger, but now that I'm older, I know exactly what he means.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


A thread of string,
no matter how small.
Even if cut
will still affect all
The memories
The laughter
The sadness
Before and after
It is a cycle
It is a seem
sewing together
reality and dream.
The people you know
The people you meet
will get angry,
will skip a beat.
People are people
Emotions and all
Friendship and family
From the climb to the fall.
What truly matters
is how much you learn,
To remember the scar
and heal the burn.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Writing Prompt 19 : Change

Prompt: Is true change possible if someone resists?

Being a person who resisted change, I am positive that change is still possible, even you resist. It one of hardest lessons to learn in life: that the one constant in life is change. It is one experience that will happen no matter how long you resist. Even if you do not change, people around you will change, buildings will change, your perspective on life will change. Sometimes you will change with out even realizing that you have. It can often depend on the awareness you have of yourself, and the awareness you have of the world. Someone told me, just the other day that the one thing humans like to do is resist change. It is the fear of the unknown that can cause people to resist change. I know that was my reason for trying to stay the same. But the truth is, even when I felt I had not changed, I was changing. In many ways, you change whenever you learn, and it is common for a person to learn at least one new thing everyday. The more you learn, the more you grow and change. It can be understandable that someone would want things to stay the same, but I know now that wishing that is illogical. If nothing changed, life would be boring and predictable. Without that difference in our lives, we would go crazy. We would never learn anything new, and we would never be able to improve ourselves.
A person may convince their self that they are not changing, but in truth they are lying to themselves, and it is their perspective on the world that has not changed. Not changing your perspective can be a dangerous way to live. It can cloud your judgement and slow your process of maturing. Change may not be easy to handle, but it is usually necessary, at least when concerning a person's attitude in life. Learning from mistakes, taking chances and improving yourself are natural ways of life. Depending on the situation, true change is possible, even if the person resists and refuses to accept that change. The people around them may notice that they have changed regardless of how many times the person denies it. The only way to accept change, is to realize that change is necessary, and to realize that even if you resist change, you cannot stop it.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Confronting Pain

I just finished the Kingdom Hearts Re:coded game and there is a very interesting message during the ending portion of the game. Sora is told that he has two choices, to forget everything and throw his hurt away, along with his memories of the past, or to face his hurt and conquer it. Sora struggles with this for a long time. He asks himself how he should react to hurt and he wonders what type of hurt it is. The interesting thing is that Sora chooses to keep his hurt, and learn from it, even when he has the option to throw away, what feels like a void in his heart. This is where Mickey steps in and tells him, that even if his memories are painful, he still treasures them. Mickey also explains that you may forget the identity of someone from the past, but you will never forget them in your heart. Sappy? I don't think so. This makes sense because hurt is forgotten, and it is also not forgotten. The experience is still remembered, but the details are jumbled up in your mind. I was told this weekend that I don't get over pain, and I think that is true. Maybe instead of feeling like I have an option to run away from painful memories, I should confront them within myself and improve my experiences in the future.
The point of this idea that Sora had a choice to let go of hurt, or confront it is a comment on the way people cope with painful situations. In the case of Kingdom Hearts, it is more courageous than running from darkness or allowing it to control you. Confronting pain or darkness is not an easy task, which is the point. In the case of Riku, he had to accept the darkness within himself in order to confront it. Sora has to do this with pain. It is a good lesson. In order to cope with pain, you must accept it, and understand it. Only then can you confront the pain and conquer the experience. Both Sora and Riku learn this lesson with the help of King Mickey, and discover that they are stronger than they thought they were. Their battles and challenges are symbolic of the personal battles and challenges that someone has within. These internal lessons are an important part of pain.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Appreciating What you have

This may sound silly, but I am just now learning this lesson. Even though my parents have told me to do this at least a thousand times, I'm learning to stop worrying about life and start appreciating what I have. This is not just the result of reading the book: How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie, but the actual experience of living life. In many ways, this lesson is the hardest to learn, especially when you feel that you need to worry all the time. The other obstacle is actually being completely honest, not only with yourself, but with other people. These experiences are extremely important, and I look back and treasure them now. It's one of those moments where everything falls into place and you're left with a sense of purpose and accomplishment. Now that I'm learning about the world, and the people who live in it, I can move forward and finally reach that day where I'm not worried all the time and I live the life I admire from other people. Appreciating what you have is one step toward a more satisfying perspective on the live you live and the people that surround you. Little things are little things, and the big things are the ones that truly matter in life, not the giant worries that haunt you.

Monday, September 12, 2011

To be Somebody

This song means a lot to me. It's all about going out there, achieveng your dreams and living your life. I hope you enjoy it, and find it as inspiring as I did ^_^

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The conditions of a name

Names can hold your fate
Decide your destiny
Define your character,
A mini prophecy.
While life goes on
just like a game
The only constant
is your name.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Chaotic or normal day at school? You decide

Writing Prompt for the day , no joke: Describe a typical day during the school year.

Wake up around 8:30 or 9
Try to remember breakfast
Try to make the least amount of noise as possible while still staying awake.
Go to class
Come back and do homework
Get a snack
Depending on whether it is Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday I may be done with classes for the day, if not I have fifteen minutes to return to the dorm and get ready for the next class, a lunch break before my third class and a ten minute walk to my last class.
If I'm done for the day, it's usually time to go on an adventure (usually consisting of the park or a grocery store)
Disorganized is organized in this schedule and a typical day of school ca be a typical day of confusion.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Flashback to childhood :The Last Unicorn

There are so many versions of "The Last Unicorn" song, and I happened to find one song by Declan Galbraith.This was one of my favorite movies as a child, and I still love it. I also read the book by Peter S Beagle, and I think the movie did a wonderful job staying true to the novel. Anyway, here's a flashback to childhood, and a lovely remake.


When the last eagle flies over the last crumbling mountain
And the last lion roars at the last dusty fountain
In the shadow of the forest though she may be old and worn
They will stare unbelieving at the last unicorn

When the first breath of winter through the flowers is icing
And you look to the north and a pale moon is rising
And it seems like all is dying and would leave the world to mourn
In the distance hear the laughter of the last unicorn

I'm alive, I'm alive

When the last moon is cast over the last star of morning
And the future has passed without even a last desperate warning
Then look into the sky where through the clouds a path is torn
Look and see her how she sparkles, it's the last unicorn

I'm alive, I'm alive

Friday, September 2, 2011


(made with a photo I took at the botanic garden, and screenshots of Dissidia, FFX and FFX2)

Memories dance
through fog and mist
forever recorded
with glowing lights.
Pieces of history,
results of a choice
linger forever
with a silent voice
The places you go,
the people you miss
all become clear
when you reminisce.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

A personal fable

A mouse was cowering in a corner when another mouse walked by.
"What are you looking at?" the mouse asked.
"A cat." the cowering mouse replied.
"I am not afraid of cats," the brave mouse said.
When the brave mouse walked around the corner, he pointed at the "cat".
"You've been cowering at a bush." the brave mouse told the scared mouse.
Moral: Fears are only as big as you make them

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Stranger Than Fiction

I highly recommend this movie to anyone, but especially to writers. This movie breaks the boundary between narrator, author and character. I don't want to spoil anything, so I will not say much about the plot. I will say however, that the character and the author are very similar, and this movie really focuses on the idea of what it means to truly live. More than that, the movie plays with genres and asks the question, what if the character an author wrote was a real person, and by writing their story, the author determines their fate?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Running is a problem

Running is a problem,
Not a solution.
Thoughts build
Questions haunt
Life looms,
And fears taunt.
The only way
To truly live
Is to trust yourself
Believe and give.
The more you try,
The more you'll know
Where you belong
And where you should go.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

When everyone else moves on (Sitting on the Sidelines)

I know that everyone reaches a point in their life when they look around at everyone else and ask themselves: "How far have I come?" or maybe, "How much have I accomplished to reach my goal?". I just finished reading the book How to Be Like Walt and learned all the obstacles he faced, and the challenges he took head on. Walt Disney was a doer, and he seemed aware that he only had so much time on earth to reach his goals. I'm afraid I haven't realized that yet, or I have put that thought aside and refuse to face some of my fears. So many of my friends have already moved on and are headed toward their own goals. It's almost like a moment when everyone get's off the train, except you. Just the fact that you are sitting in that seat, with no one else around you can make you question if you made the right decision. I know I have more to accomplish before I head off to the real world and start building a life for myself. It's a transition period that everyone goes through, and I'm convinced that this moment can be the defining challenge in a person's life. I believe that because I'm thinking about these things now, I am headed toward that moment.
For years I have observed everyone else as they lived life around me. During these observations, I have sat on the sidelines, built a fortress, and completely avoided anything I feared.
There is however one moment where I actually felt I belonged, and I felt like I was living life. The Disney College Program created an environment where I felt no reason to put up defenses, and I could pursue the things I wanted to do. It was my first time living away from home, and I enjoyed all the opportunities I took to learn about people, and about the truth within myself. I still look back to those times and have less regrets for my actions than any moment through out my life. This is probably some identity crisis, or maybe even me being impatient to get out there and begin my career path to reach my goals.
I do know that all these struggles, and all this pain I went through are my fault. I refused to open my heart to many opportunities, and as I result, I have regrets that haunt me to this day. Call it what you will, a social anxiety, fear of people or even a fear of myself, it's still a huge problem and a giant obstacle that effects my life. I'm sure that the frustration I feel, and the disappoints I have of myself are normal as well. No one is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone has fears, and every one has to make a decision at least once in their life time.
Some people may laugh at me, saying I have already wasted so much time living in fear. Some people may be disappointed in me, and tell me that I have learned very little about life and people. I know many different reactions to this situation, and I still struggle with understanding who I am and what I want.
So let me explain that I know the fault is mine. I have pushed people away. I have enclosed myself in my own little world. I have blamed others for my frustration and pain. I have also flat out refused to acknowledge that I have an abnormal reaction to many normal situations. But, if there is one thing I have learned, it' s that the more you avoid something, the longer it haunts you. I guess it is true that you can't compare yourself to others to a certain extent. Everyone is different and everyone has different coping mechanisms to their difficult situations.
In my case, I am struggling with being proud of myself and having a hard time accepting that I have done so little. Not just with my career path, but with my life in general. And for some reason, maybe because I'm in my last semester of college, it's catching up with me. All the situations I avoided, all the times I thought instead of acted, have shown me that I probably haven't lived life.
I can say that I have reasons. I have been told this by several people. I have a lot of fears to overcome, most of them abnormal. I have a lot of flaws I refuse to accept. I have many opportunities to take advantage of in the future, some of which I already worry about and fear. This is human, but it is also a huge challenge to overcome.
Maybe the only way I can resolve this problem, is to write a story of someone going through the same thing. Sometimes a writer can understand a situation more after they write about it. This could be a story that I need to tell.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Memories keep living

Memories survive
Even when others are gone
The time spent
The right and wrong
No matter the distance
Through time and space
Memories always
Live in their place