Monday, June 24, 2013

It's Everything Until It's Not.

Where to begin? How do you tell a group of invisible strangers that your life has been complete chaos for the past month that school has been out even though you spend 80% of your time in your PJ's which only goes to prove how unstable you are when 80% of your personal turmoil is self-inflicted? Or do you even tell the strangers because you can say almost anything to strangers because there's a high probability that you and they will never meet, saving you from the soul-crushing embarrassment of perhaps over-sharing, but people you know in real life on the other hand, hold all the power in the world just for being apart of your world and maybe you shouldn't share how depressed you are or how worked up you are over the Boy Thing's freckled hands or how sometimes you get really upset that your hair won't do that thing that Zooey Deschanel's does? Who are we kidding? Of course I'm going to tell the invisible strangers. Who else would I tell? The people who I know in real life and who care for me and who have on several occasions made it known to me that they would be there for me if I ever needed them in times of trouble and self-doubt? Oh wait, I think I'm confusing reality with my books again. I might have just accidentally described Augustus Waters. This rambling diatribe has only confirmed how much crazy accumulates in my brain when I go too long without blogging. Seriously, if I don't get this shit out somehow, I just might end up committed one day. Maybe I should make friends with the men carrying the butterfly nets and large needles now while I still have the chance at amiability.

I guess I just want to say that sometimes you overvalue your intellect and rationality. Sometimes you pride yourself on your ability to think clearly and one day God basically shits on that idea by throwing raging hormones and overbearing depressive thoughts at you while your back was turned. One day you're diligently studying for finals and preparing for Summer Stock auditions, perfectly happy and proud of being single and focusing on yourself and your writing, and next thing you know Boy Thing is invading your pre-sleep thoughts which had previously been reserved for books and Woody Allen. One day school is out and summer has come and how could you possibly feel anything less than beaming when the world looks like it's been reborn, and the next thing you know the colors are dulled and your body feels too heavy to lift out of bed in the morning and whenever you talk to people you have to consciously remind yourself to smile.

I forget that now matter how hard I may try, I will not always be in control of my life. Or at least all of it. What do I control? Certainly not how I feel. But I control what I do. And while I may not know how I'm going to feel tomorrow, I know that I control the choices I will make. I know I will wake up. I will eat my breakfast. And I will open a book. All, thankfully, by my own accord.

Also, maybe one day I will teach myself how to express my rambling thoughts without so many run-on sentences. It's a style choice, alright?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Things are happening.

I've given a lot of insincere apologies for not posting on this blog before but this is not one of them. I'm sorry I can't share the poorly formed and potentially thrilling thoughts that have been festering in my mind this past month. It's still a huge shock to me that people care about the things I have to say. And with each comment on a blog post or like of a youtube video, that shock becomes greater and more prevalent. Just know that I have been writing a lot for myself. It's therapeutic and good for me and gets me excited like watching a super awesome action movie trailer with lots of high-budget explosions. I haven't gone anywhere and there will be more stories to tell you all soon. Until then, DFTBA.

Monday, April 8, 2013

BEDA #8 (7? I dun know) - The Bold, Totes Pathetic Tale of Emily

[Post I wrote yesterday on the 7th which I'm only posting now not because I feel completely comfortable with it but if I didn't there'd be no post today. Whoop.]

Bad, panic-y, anxiety-filled day. I had a mild anxiety attack today at rehearsal. I know a lot of people suffer from bad panic attacks and I'm very fortunate that mine are more minuscule and can be controlled with fresh air and breathing, but they're still hella scary.

I'm in a production of The Secret Garden and today we worked on the largest dance number in the show (there aren't many). It's not that the dance moves are hard. And it's not that I can't do them. It's just when everyone is around me and we're all doing different things and the music is swelling, I freak out. The song has a very tribal feel to it; half the cast is chanting in Hindu and we're all doing this vaguely African dance. And there's a moment where everyone just screams at the top of their lungs. It overwhelms me. It frightens me. I close up and I can't move but I have to get away.

The worst part is always when I'm standing in a corner, breathing heavily, and someone comes up and asks me what's wrong.

"I have a headache," I say.

"Oh, I'm sorry." And they stand there a while because they don't know what to say. Then they leave, and I started breathing again.

It's stupid, right? That I'm terrified of a song? But it happens every time. I know that if I explained to the director what was happening and asked to be pulled from the number, she'd let me. I don't want to force myself to do something that's unhealthy, but I also don't want to give up too easily. I just have to be braver (ugh I sound so ridiculous) and try harder.


Sunday, April 7, 2013

BEDA #7 - Do we have any ships in sector 47?

I just wrote a very long post about anxiety but felt too nervous to share it and wrote this piece of crap instead. Here's a picture of a lighting fixture (or alarm thingy?) that looks like Admiral Ackbar.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

BEDA #6 - All the Cool Kids Write Not Goodly.

Popping in for a quick post today. Honestly, I had a pretty nice day. I woke up, worked out, actually did some of the homework I was assigned over break, and sung along to The Book of Mormon soundtrack with my brother. There was, however, one moment of disturbance.

I feel like you may have already suspected this judging from BEDA posts 2-4, but my NaNo novel is in bad shape. Really bad shape. Like if novels had human forms, mine would be obese and have diabetes. And I thought I was okay with this. I realized that everything I wrote wasn't going to be perfect or even very good, but that wasn't the point. The point was simple: write and do nothing else. So that's what I did. And as I was finishing a 30-minute word sprint, I wrote... a bad sentence. Not just a not good sentence, I mean a truly terrible sentence. As I was writing it, I thought to myself, "Dear goodness, Emily. That is garbage. And not even amusing garbage, that's like bad fan fiction garbage. Don't write it, don't write it." But alas, I did. And of course... that is the sentence my brother read when I left my word document open.

I don't know if you've ever left a diary open or anything along those lines, but there's a moment of utter mortification and if you could control things with your mind, you would destroy all human existence in a burst of nuclear destruction and hellfire. But I am not Carrie, and all I could do was tell him how upset I was, and ask him to close the document. Of course, being my brother, he cared little about the novel and my feelings, so I know it shouldn't be a big deal to me and I should just shrug it off, but I can't.

And now I'm trying to work on my book but I'm too afraid to let myself be awful. JUST BE AWFUL, EMILY. AWFUL IS THE BEEEEEST. kseeyoutomorrowbye.

Friday, April 5, 2013

BEDA #5 - Nothing To Do But Smile

Hi again. I feel like a regretful 5-year-old who's come crawling back to his mother after a large tantrum seeking forgiveness. What I'm trying to say is, sorry I got all Secret Life of the Despondent Teenager on you there. I try to act like a rational person, I really do. It's like my mind is a pair of fraternal twins on a cartoon show--one is completely cool and collected while the other is a crazed psychopath. I'm hoping this is what all teenagers go through and I'm not actually severely damaged or anything.

So, I'm in a better mood today. And for absolutely no reason at all. Nothing about today was different from any other day. In fact, I spent most of the day in the same state of perpetual gloom that I've become accustomed to lo these many weeks. I woke up and I was grumpy.  I didn't write my novel and I was grumpy. I filmed a video and I pretended not to be grumpy. I worked out and showered and went to rehearsal. Then I came home. I sat down at the computer and logged onto blogger and, I don't know, I just felt better. Like, what was the point of being so down? Maybe if I cheered up a bit--changed perspectives or looked at things through a different light--everything would lighten up.

And now I'm writing and the world seems so not horrible I want to sing. Is that weird? Am I crazy? Who am I kidding, the answer is yes. But I can't help being crazy. And even if my crazy sometimes makes me feel blighted and broken, well, I guess I don't mind as long as I get to feel like this afterwards.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

BEDA #4 - Why aren't I Ernest Hemingway?

You always hear about these writers who have just terrible lives. Pretty much every successful author from the 20th century was an alcoholic whose parents didn't hug him enough. But they were amazing writers. Even though their lives were complete crap, they wrote brilliantly. So by some kind of mysterious law, my writing should be so mind-bogglingly prodigious that you should be crying right now. But you're not. Because this is crap. 

I'm watching some cheesy romance movie right now with Anne Hathaway who's sporting this terrible English accent like she's in a community theater production of Mary Poppins. It's called One Day and the plot here is she's friend-zoning this overly-confident yet sensitive flirt and they keep using odd British slang. I can't even count the number of times they've said "have a wee" instead of piss. It's getting unbearable. But I'm going to keep watching it because I like the way they look at each other when the other's not looking and the way his voice trembles when he's phoning her and he just wants to tell her how much he misses her but can't because he knows they'd be hell together. 

I should be working on my NaNo novel. I'm only at 2,600 words when today's goal is like, what, 6,000? Shit I don't even know anymore. Oh and look at this, Anne's character has got bangs now. It's that just dashing? I'll work on the book after the movie.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

BEDA #3 - Why Am I Still Trying?

I really don't understand what is compelling me to keep writing these. Especially when there are so many weights insistent on keeping me down. (All weights self-inflicted, I might add.) Like today I my friend emailed me an English assignment because her printer was broken and I asked if I could read it and she said yes and holy crap. It was beautiful. It was an historical fiction assignment where we were supposed to pick a decade and write a 5-page short story. My friend chose the 1960s and wrote this amazing story about a French girl who meets The Beatles in a cafe in Paris. Her writing was so gorgeous--it had impeccable flow and every bit of dialogue made me squeal. But the whole time I was reading it, I kept thinking "this is so much better than mine."

I'm not good at a lot of things. Or at least the things I want to be good at. I'm not good at studying. I'm not good at focusing or socializing or any "talent." I'm a good singer and a decent enough actress, but I don't find those things as much fun as I used to. And every time I failed miserably at something I would always tell myself the same thing, "It's not your skill set. Everyone has things they're good at and things they're not. You can't expect to be good at everything." Then I'd think about my writing. And it made me feel so much better to know I had something I could succeed at.

 I thought I could succeed, but recently, (and especially today while reading my friend's paper) I've felt... not my best. Not anywhere near my best. Not even close to my good. Take this post for instance--it's a mess. I have no clever jokes and my wording is poor. Every sentence screams mediocrity. (Okay, I'll admit that one wasn't too bad.)

Maybe this is just a slump. Maybe I'll wake up tomorrow or two weeks from now and start churning out brilliance that will made my readers (lol) weep.

That's probably it.

I just hope I don't give up before then.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

BEDA #2 - Nonsense

Further evidence for the theory brought up in yesterday's post has arisen. Well, it's not really further evidence because it's the exact same piece of evidence I talked about yesterday which is: this girl be cray. And not in the fun "look at how upbeat my dance moves are and how floppy my top knot is" cray. More like "I'm tired and if you try to talk to me I'm going to literally eat your face" cray.

Today I did four lessons of Algebra II, and then went to a 4 hour rehearsal for the show I'm in (Secret Garden). You know what, let me rephrase that: I should have gone to a four hour rehearsal except I was half an hour late because my car pool decided to take some weird back roads-y way that took forty minutes to get there AND SHE STOPPED FOR GAS. WHAT EVEN RAAAAAAGE.

And now comes the time where I'm forced to wrap things up here because it's 10:55 and I haven't written any words for NaNo at all.


Monday, April 1, 2013

BEDA #1 - I'm Crazy

Really though, I am. Here is a brief recap of what I already have going down in April:
I'm in a musical that rehearses 5-6 days a week for an average of 3 1/2 hours every day PLUS tech week which is the emotional equivalent to... I don't know, Mega PMS. Like if PMS had the powers of a comic book super hero, that's tech week.
April Session of Camp NaNoWriMo with a word goal of 50,000. Why? Why would I write a blog post every day if I'm already cranking out a daily 1,667? (Please refer to title for answer.)
And the cherry on top of the apocalyptic sundae of my life: school. (I don't even want to tell you how far behind I am in Algebra.)

But even with all that crazy, I still decided to do BEDA. And it's a very recent decision. One I just made less than 10 minutes ago, in fact. What happened in the last 10 minutes to compel me to take another step closer to the Cliffs of Insanity you ask? Why, it was my YouTube subscription box of all things. Of the last 26 videos uploaded in my subscription box (which is really more of a list, but I won't go too much into that right now) fifteen, that's right, fifteen have been from creators participating in VEDA. When I sat down in front of my computer today, I logged on to a stream of creative endeavors and I was overcome with jealousy. I wanted to be making things too. I know I have Camp NaNo going on, but it somehow didn't feel like enough. I saw people anxious and excited to be creating. They were eager and ready. How could I just ignore that?

Maybe my reasons for doing BEDA aren't very well thought out. Maybe this is the tip of iceberg of mental stability, but you know what? I'm really okay with being a little bit crazy.

Sunday, February 10, 2013


A tiny picture box... WHAT IS THIS SORCERY?!

After almost 2 years of an inner battle that left my insides bruised and black, I have finally taken the leap and made my first video! And it. was. terrifying. I am literally shaking as I type this. There's no plausible reason why I should be feeling this kind of terror. I'm doing this for myself and not for anyone else, so it's not the possibility of people hating my videos that makes me quake with fear. I'm really just scared that someone from my real life is going to find it. There's this tiny voice inside my head that keeps saying Your parents are going to see it. Your teachers are going to see it. Kids at your school are going to see it. THE WHOLE WORLD WILL SEE IT. But what remains unknown is why I'm so scared of these people finding out that I'm passionate about YouTube. It's not some dirty little secret that I'm ashamed of. I'm not worried about being mocked or ridiculed. Then why? Why do I twitch as I fill in the video description? Why am I paranoid that every time my parents walk downstairs, they're going to say those dreaded words, "I found your YouTube videos."

Maybe this is something that will fade with time or maybe I'll just have to learn to deal with the fidgeting digits. The bottom line is, this is what I want to be doing. And I can't let this small fear keep me from it.

Friday, February 8, 2013

This is important chiz.

There are times, Blog, when a girl loses track of her priorities--when distractions cloud her goals and ambitions, and she forgets what she has set out to gain. And then there are times when she is acting like plain ol' butt nugget, suffering from chronic couchitis. Obviously, my enthusiasm for writing has undergone a sufficient decrease since Blogmas. But honestly, I'm okay with putting this writing project on the back burner for now. It's not like I'm giving up--I'm still planning on posting every week. Granted, those posts will probably be written in a blazing haste at 9 PM on a Saturday, but sometimes we have to force ourselves into doing stuff, even if it's stuff we want to be doing. I'm not going to apologize for not posting, because aside from the brief Gilmore Girls binge I went on last weekend, the things I was doing were more important. You know what? I take it back. It was incredibly important that I watch 11 episodes of Gilmore Girls.

So that being said, why don't I talk to you about some of the important things that have been the recent goings-on lately?

In my town, we have this tiny, little theater that was built in the 60s and shows old movies for 3 bucks. (Not old old movies. Just ones that have already been out in theaters for a couple months.) It's one of the cutest places you will ever go: the bathroom's color scheme is coral and aqua and there's a large wall featuring the heads of several smiling celebrities. I'm not exactly sure what the relevance of these stars and starlets (why doesn't media use the term starlet anymore?) is--whether they saw a movie there themselves or maybe the theater just showed a movie with them in it. (My personal theory is that it's a hit wall, and the entire theater is just a cover-up for a mass celebrity-murdering crime syndicate.) So yeah, I really like the place. Last week, my sister and I went there to see (myself for the second time, her for the 3rd) The Perks of Being a Wallflower. I don't normally go see movies for a second time in theaters, but I opted to with Perks because the first time I saw it, I was crying for a good 3/4 of the scenes--most of them not even sad. I'd cry at simple, beautiful things like Charlie seeing Sam for the first time, illuminated by the stadium lights, and the trio dancing to Come On, Eileen at homecoming. And Secret Santa. Dear Lord, Secret Santa. So I thought if it was my second time watching it, I wouldn't be as emotional. Oh, how wrong I was. It's such a special story to me and to a lot of other people as well. The movie did a fantastic--if not perfect--job of taking every moment of "you are not alone" from the book and using it to its full potential by adding those beautiful shots and talented actors to the words. Plus every bit of Ezra Miller's dialogue is hilarious. ("Why are you trying to EAT CHRISTMAS?")

Also last week, TV suffered the greatest lost it's ever known when the final episode of 30 Rock aired. I was introduced to 30 Rock 4 years ago by a friend (Margo) and since then, it's been my heart's song. Liz Lemon is everything I've ever wanted to be: writer, lover of cheese puffs, and married to James  Marsden. How could I pass up on such a flawless role model? But really, this show had the smartest, sharpest comedy I've ever experienced. I'm so fortunate that I got to spend the years I did with it. And thank goodness I have shows like Community and Arrested Development to continue to balance out all the garbage my brain intakes from Glee. (I love it, but it really is a terrible show.)

And I just realized that the two events that I deemed more important than my writing are a movie and a tv show. PRIORITIES.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Ain't No Party

PA, COME QUICK! EM DONE DARE CAUGHT THE BLACK PLAGUE! (Translations: Get up off your lazy ass, your daughter is dying.) Gonna be honest, writing this blog post is not the first thing I want to be doing right now on account of the little elves swinging their pick-axes at my innards and the tiny crocodile using my brain as a punching bag. (If tiny chickens can cause the common cold, then who's to say that elves and crocodiles aren't responsible for stomach flu?) Today, I woke up to two glorious things: (1) my sister blow drying her hair at 6 in the morning and (2) that feeling in your gut that can only make you think one thing: oh s---. I've gotta heave. So as it turns out, my parents and I have all caught my sister's stomach flu that she had a few weeks ago. And there ain't no party like a stomach flu party cause a stomach flu party is HORRIBLE. So forgive this post's grouchiness and length, but I know I would've felt infinitely worse (if that's even possible) if I had sat on the couch as the clock turned to midnight on Saturday without my having written a post this week. I mean really, it's only January. Sorry if this depresses you. If you're feeling kind of low, you should watch this Pep Talk from Kid Preident. He's a pretty cool guy.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Stop Studying Strife

Here's where I have to apologize, blog. I apologize because unfortunately, my life did not come equipped with a prepackaged Venter. No, I don't mean a venter as in one who vents or even one who repairs vents. I mean a Venter as in someone who will pretend to listen to me as I roll around the couch in a fit of spasms, complaining like the incessant preschooler that I am that school is too hard and my teachers are out to get me and that John F. stole my juice box during snack time. So, when times (and juice rations) are tough, I turn to you. Because unlike my parents or my friends or the stranger waiting at the bus stop, you have to listen to me. And for that, you have my deepest apologies.

Prepare yourselves, now. Because here comes the venting.

I hate school. I hate it. And when I say I hate school, I don't mean that I hate learning. If I hated learning, I wouldn't be subscribed to such amazing educational channels on YouTube like CrashCourse, SciShow, CGPGrey, and TheBrainScoop. If I hated learning, I wouldn't go near beautiful classics like Gatsby and Catcher in the Rye and The Adventures of Hunkleberry--ehem. I mean... Huckleberry Finn. If I hated learning, I'd invest more of my time watching marathons of the Jersey Shore. No, I hate school.

I hate the way it's forced down students' throats and the way adults overemphasize its importance.
You want to get into a Good College? Better do well in high school.
You want to get a job? Better do well in high school.
You want to overthrow the Chinese emperor? Better do well in high school.
You want to grow up to be Kim Possible? Better do well in high school.
You want to live a good, long life, surrounded by loving friends, and eventually come to find true happiness and self-fulfillment? BETTERDOWELLINHIGHSCHOOLTROLOLOLOL.

This week, I've experienced first hand the pressure to do well in school, and the toll it takes--emotionally, mentally, and physically. I've never struggled too much with school up until this year, my junior year. I was a good student: never turned assignments in late, did well on exams, never, never slipped below a 90. But you see, if sophomore year is the equivalent of someone punching you in the face, then junior year is like someone punching you in the face, kicking you in the groin, attacking you with a weed whacker and then blocking tumblr on your computer (because that would be the toughest blow of all).

You have to understand that it's a teenager's job to be a student just like it's that adult's job to be a lawyer or waiter or to scoop elephant dung. While it's not technically the focus of their life, you HAVE to be good at it otherwise you're considered a failure. One bad grade and a student's world is thrown into turmoil. Please consider, for example, this true to life reenactment:
Regular student, Sally S. Normal, sat in her Algebra II class on a weekday like any other. Little did she know the danger that lurked under the stack of tests that rested on her teacher's desk. Her teacher picked up the stack and moved menacingly down the aisle, slamming test after test in front of Sally's classmates. Some let out excited squeals or sighs of relief, while others hung their head in silence, soaking in the shame and misery brought on by their own inadequacy. Sally's test loomed face-down on her desk. Did she dare turn it over? Nightmares of the disappointed looks on her parents' faces, weeks without the internet or her cellphone, and worst of all: hours of extra credit work all rushed into her imagination. With a trembling hand, Sally turned the papers over, praying for an A or even a B+. Her insides twisted violently as she stared at the D that lay before her. Sally's fists grasped at the air as she looked up, cursing the heavens, and let out the long, tired plea of misery and frustration well-known among high-schoolers everywhere. "NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!"

Rather like Sally, I had to deal with an earth-shattering bad test grade recently. If you've ever shared in Sally's and my struggle, you know how awful it feels. You feel inadequate and just not good enough in general. Unlovable, a disappointment, a waste of time and space--it's so easy to call yourself these things after a failure. We get caught up in the enormity that school is at this point in our lives. But in reality, one bad test grade, or even failing a class, isn't as big a deal as we think it is. So what if you forgot what the Emancipation Proclamation is or how to graph quadratic equations? I'm not saying that these things aren't important, and it is true that knowing them would benefit you in some way or another (even if it isn't clear how while you're shlepping your way through 3 chapters of Chemistry). But don't destroy yourself over school. And no matter how cheesy it sounds, the important thing is trying hard. And here's the thing: doing well and trying hard are not the same thing. If you have one especially troubling subject (*cough*mathisofthedevil*cough*), or if you just can't learn as easily as everyone else, that's fine, but you giving up isn't doing yourself any good. Stick it out for a couple more years, because the times are coming when you won't have to worry about grades or report cards or tests (at least not the kind you're used to now).

Have I just transitioned this rant into some kind of It Gets Better advert? Dear goodness. Why must I be so incapable of sustained fury? I'm just gonna go listen to some Hank Green rage songs.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Alternate Realities

I'm staying home from school today. No, it's not because I caught the black plague or hacked up a lung. I'm in full control of all my bodily functions. I'm taking a mental health day which is probably for the best considering the somewhat breakdown I experienced last night over the 11 lessons of math homework that I neglected over break. I'm fine now.

My school only meets twice a week, which makes sick days a very rare thing for me. In the past 14 years I've been attending this co-op, I've only missed about 3 days. I stayed home to get work done, but I can't stop looking at the clock and thinking about what I'd be doing if I were at school right now.

9:55 AM
Should: Be in the car with my mother on our way to school.
Am: Waking up from a dream in which the entire town I live in is a hallway.

10:30 AM
Should: Be in Algebra II/Trig, sitting next to my friend/perfect human male specimen Jake.
Am: Debating whether or not I should get out of bed and disturb the sleeping feline at my feet. (I got up.)

11:20 AM
Should: Be talking with my best friend outside her history class about whatever ridiculous thing her history teacher did last week.
Am: Making myself chicken strips for breakfast.

12:00 PM
Should: Be sitting in study hall, reading whatever book I've chosen to tear my heart out that week. (This week it's To Kill a Mockingbird.)
Am: Scrolling my subscription feed for The Artist Formerly Known As Disneykid1's video.

12:30 PM
Should: Be eating lunch outside with my friends, fooling ourselves into believing it's summer despite the precipitation levels.
Am: Writing a blog post and watching Scrubs.

I should probably get started on that math homework so this cycle doesn't repeat. (I saw Looper. I know how this crap ends.) But right now, I can't help but think about Emily in another timeline where she actually did her school during break instead of drooling over Zachary Quinto in Heroes. (Yeah, Syler is hot. There. I said it.) That Emily, who is probably eating a peanut butter sandwich and discussing the previous night's Pretty Little Liars episode with her friends right now. Lucky bitch.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


COME, MY STALLIONS! MOUNT THE SHIP OF YOUR DREAMS AND BEAT ON, BORNE BACK CEASELESSLY INTO THE PAST FUTURE. (Sorry, folks. Who are we, Jay Gatsby? We don't need no stinkin' green light.)

I'm actually giddy with excitement about all the things I want to do with this year. Yes, you heard me correctly: giddy. I am Kevin McCallister, in his little red sweater, emerging from his front door into the snow-covered banks of his front yard, telling the world, "Did you hear that? I'M NOT AFRAID ANYMORE." And like Kevin, I have a plan.


  1. Read 90 books. I took on the 50 book challenge in 2012 and ended up finishing the year with a total 70  books read. In 2013, Mama's ready for the big dogs. In that 90 books, I want at least 15 to be classics, so I'm not gorging myself on YA fiction. (I've added a tab where you can keep up with my progress on the 90 Book Challenge.) 
  2. Blog on a weekly basis. (Also, I want to do this blog-every-day-for-a-month thing again. I'm thinking BEDA?) I kept a journal last year that I tried to write in as much as possible, but it didn't help me hone my writing skills, because I knew no one would ever see it--it was for my eyes only. If my work is published on the internet, with the possibility of anyone seeing it, there's a lesser chance of pieces like, "Today was good. Dad brought home donuts and since none of my siblings were home, I got three." I honestly wish I could say I made that up right now and didn't just copy it out of my journal. Alas: a maple bar and two regular glazed. 
  3. Finish writing/editing my novel. NaNoWriMo winners receive a special code, allowing them 5 free copies from CreateSpace and it's only good until sometime around June, so I've gotta get on that.
  4. Start a YouTube channel. YouTube is an outlet that I've been passionate about for a little over two years now, and I've never had the courage to take the plunge and make my own content. This year, no excuses. I want to start making videos about books--reviews, TBRs/Wrap-ups, tags, that sort of thing. BOOKTUBIA WILL BE MY KINGDOM. (I probably won't start this one until school ends due to time restrictions.)
  5. Try hard in everything I do. I don't want to have the "just get it done" mindset. If I'm going to do something, I'm going to do it well, dammit. 
These are not New Year's Resolutions. This is a plan--a map, a layout. One I plan to follow if I want to make it to my destination. What are some things you hope to accomplish this year?