callistahogan: (Default)
So I might have some interesting news.

There was an assembly for the sophomore class at my school today, about the programs the vocational school in my town offers. The courses offered there are more hands-on, more practical, than the regular academic classes we get at school. Although most of the classes are on subjects like engineering, carpentry, etc., there are also cooking classes and -- what I'm personally interested in -- classes that enable one to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA).

I'd have to take Medical Science there in my junior year, because I think that's a requirement before you can take the actual course. But at the end of the nursing course in my senior year (that's one with lots of hands-on experience, going to nursing homes, etc.), you take an exam and, if you pass, you get a certificate that verifies you as a nursing assistant, and you can work in pretty much any state that accepts it.

I am thinking I'm definitely going to be taking the class.

Because I want to make a difference. I don't want to just sit on my butt all day and watch multifandom videos on YouTube, or procrastinate by watching episodes of Legend of the Seeker online. I want to get out there, make a difference in my community, and I think this is the perfect way to do that. I want to be able to help people, to talk with them, to give them someone to listen to. Although I still want to be an English teacher and (eventually) an author, I don't want that to be my only goal in life. I want to be a nursing assistant, someone who regularly interacts with people who might not be able to get that sort of love and affection in their everyday environment.

That's probably why the course appealed to me so much -- because I am a girl who wants to make a difference somehow and this seems like the perfect way to do it.

As soon as possible, I am going to talk to my friend about it, who also wants to do it, and see when we can both schedule a meeting with the guidance counselor to talk about it. Because this is an opportunity I am not going to let pass me by. I managed to let a chance to become a foreign exchange student slip through my grasp, but this time I am not going to do that. This time, I'm going to make sure I do something more with my life than just study and hang out on the Internet all day. I'm sure this is a popular course, so the sooner I get to talk to people about it, the better.

I am really excited, though. I almost can't wait until next year!
callistahogan: (Default)
I did not think it was possible for my homework load to get any heavier than it was on Monday, but yesterday, it was surpassed by quite a lot. Starting from four, I worked steadily until ten o'clock at night. I had Cinema, Geometry, English, Biology, French, and Foundations homework, and most of it was reading and writing responses, close-reading a text, writing notecards, doing math problems, stuff that can't be done in just a few minutes when you get home from school, with no thought involved. With my homework, you actually had to think it through and work through the problems, and it took quite a while.

Adding it all together, I ended up doing about twelve hours of school yesterday. Sure, I took about a two hour break after school, but it is just ridiculous, the amount of work I have. I didn't even know it was possible to do homework for six hours straight, but apparently it is -- and trust me, I never want to do it again (although it is pretty much a given that I will be). I just hope that one of those crazy, six-hour days doesn't end up happening during November, or I will die. Just keel over and die.

At least I have a school laptop, so that'll make it easier to do work. And I am getting my old laptop back today, hopefully... and then getting a Dell mini within the next three weeks or so...

Yes, I am going from having no laptops to having three. How, I have no clue, but I do know that I am extraordinarily lucky in that way. But not in the way of homework.

In that way, I am going to either sink or swim.

callistahogan: (Heart Icon)
This is the last day of summer.

I start school tomorrow.

Part of me -- an exceedingly small part of me -- is excited that school is starting again, but the biggest part of me is not ready. It seems like it was just a couple days ago that I was getting out of school, and now I'm going back. Back to homework, back to teachers, back to reading books during lunch, back to having no friends in any of my classes.

I want to change things this year and I will try to, but the only problem is that my school has so many groups that were formed ages ago, that I am not sure where I fit in. I know that if I just open up and not be so shy all the time I can find a place to fit, but that is more easily said than done. Maybe this year I'll grow out of my debilitating shyness. I hope so.

Most of my classes this year are easy. The only classes I'm nervous about are Geometry, Biology and Gym. I am not looking forward to Geometry, because the teacher is really strict, judging from what I've heard. He's also "useless," according to other people, and to get math, I need a teacher who is not useless. Thankfully my best friend is taking Geometry as well (albeit from a different school), so she'll help me. I am also not looking forward to Biology because I'm not good with science, and Gym because I am not an athlete, and anyone who considers me good at sports needs their eyes checked.

Pretty much the only things I'm excited about are the following:
  • my new clothes,
  • the fact that English is all year long,
  • that I got Creative Writing in the second semester, so I have two writing/reading classes in a semester, and
  • that I have a study hall where I can do my homework, so that I have plenty of time in November to write during NaNo.
Other than that, I am not looking forward to school.

Oh, and I have to finish about eighty pages of Oscar and Lucinda for summer reading.

By tomorrow.

(Yes, I am a procrastinator. Yes, that will change this school year.)
callistahogan: (Default)
Just got in my grades for my second semester.

Got all As. Lowest grade was a 94.

YES. :D
callistahogan: (Heart Icon)
Ugh. I don't know why, but I just can't muster up the drive to update in any sense of regularity lately. Part of it is school, but the majority is just me being lazy and not wanting to do anything else other than sleep and read fanfiction all day.

However, I only have three days left of school (Monday is the last full day, then Tuesday and Wednesday are finals, so those are half days), so hopefully, after school ends, I'll post more often. I'll probably be reading a lot, but I hope that will help me post more.

Speaking of school, though...

I can't believe my freshman year of high school is nearly over. I'm not sorry it's over, but it is strange. To think, in three years' time, I'll be a high school graduate! That's a scary thought, but I can't wait. I just want my life to start, you know? To be able to get out, do something, get a job, even though I know it's not as glamorous as I sometimes think it is.

I wish I could concentrate on that, but I've got to concentrate on the last three days of school. Then I can just relax and do nothing. (Wow, that thought sounds so good right now. I haven't really been able to do nothing for so long...)

On Monday, nothing is really happening. In World Studies, we are having a Risk/food day, where we just play Risk and eat food. Then, in French, we are going to have a party, which also requires food. Even though I have to record an oral reading that day in French, I am bringing cupcakes and brownies to both of the classes. I haven't decided which treat goes to which class, but I'll figure it out. And in my other classes... in Accelerated Physical Science, I am just going to work on my final, and in gym, we're just going to play field hockey. So, easy.

Of course, finals...

The two hardest are on the same day: Tuesday. Not that they're overly hard, but I still am not one hundred percent sure what we're going to have to do in World Studies, other than naming 125 things on a world map. Hopefully, it'll be easy. In French, it's written (I will do the oral part Monday), which is something I excell in. In Accelerated Physical Science, it's just a presentation and a four-page paper on a topic of our choice (which is, in my case, nuclear fission and fusion). Gym's final is written, although the physical fitness tests I did Wednesday and today are also part of it.

So far, I am most stressed over World Studies and Accelerated Physical Science. World Studies because I am not sure what's going to be on it, and Accelerated Physical Science because I know I have to get a pretty damn near perfect score if I want to get on high honor roll this semester -- and incidentally, I hate presentations with a fiery passion.

I'll be fine, though. I'm pretty sure I'm one of the best students in our grade. I just have to make sure I don't procrastinate.

--

In other news (although this is slightly connected to finals, in that it has to do with the physical fitness test part of my gym final):

From the beginning of the semester, I increased the number of ab curls and push-ups I could do by twenty. Each. At the beginning of the semester, I could only do 14 ab curls and 16 push-ups, but now I can do 34 and 36, respectively. So that is definitely really, really good.


--

Tomorrow, I will probably write book reviews.  If I don't procrastinate, obviously.

callistahogan: (No Greater Love)
I haven't posted in a week, which is really making me feel like I am a lot more boring than I thought.

Today was a bad day, though.

First, I had two presentations, one in World Studies and one in Accelerated Physical Science. The one in Accelerated Physical Science was not that bad, as I had someone to save me from doing terrible artwork (as I am wont to do), but in World Studies, I made the mistake of using glue to stick flimsy little pieces of paper to a posterboard, and guess what? It got all wrinkly.

So my poster looked terrible. (However, the good thing is that I didn't have to present today, so I am going to redo my poster and bring in a better one tomorrow. Now I have glue sticks!)

And then, I got a bit of money from one of my friends to buy a Poptart. For the past couple weeks, they had been a dollar for two, ridiculously enough, but today, I got back a quarter... and thought it was fifty cents, probably because they lowered their price and I thought, because my brain wasn't working, that they lowered it to the original price of fifty cents. So I tried buying a bag of chips, and those were fifty cents.

So I ended up looking like an idiot in front of a few people when I tried insisting that I had fifty cents, not twenty-five, and when I finally realized it, I grew so embarrassed and nearly cried about the day. Everything just built up, from having to take the bus to having the bad presentation to making another fool out of myself in front of high schoolers, and honestly...

That wasn't the end of it.

You see, last night, I dropped my laptop. I thought it was fine, but lo and behold, I ended up breaking my wireless card. I mean, entirely, smashing it, crushing it, bending it, the whole nine yards. So I am now typing this on my stupid, old hunk of junk computer, remarking on the loudness of the keyboard and feeling just a little fed-up and frustrated.

At least I'm not crying anymore.

And, to look on the bright side, at least I can redo my poster. And I have this computer, which just makes me feel so grateful that it didn't end up breaking down. Praise the Lord, I say. :)

I suppose I can read more, too.

Speaking of which, I finished a book, Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld, which I absolutely adored. A review might be coming today on it.
callistahogan: (Default)
I made it through the first day of the new semester.

And guess what?

It's not that bad!

Excepting gym, I am in the "smart people" class and, of course, there's really no such thing as a "smart people" gym class.

Out of all my classes, they don't seem to be that bad. World Studies sounds like it could be fun (and, with my teacher leaning Democrat, there are some interesting opportunities to be had, as I tend to lean slightly Republican), French 2 will probably be no different than French 1 except we might be going a bit faster, and Accelerated Physical Science is going to pass by in the blink of an eye. And gym...  is gym. Nothing to that, I've just got to get through it.

I have homework the first day, though, and an APS quiz tomorrow...

At least it's Open Note.

And, speaking of which, I should probably start writing my notes. And think of how I am going to get through the next few months with no one to sit with at lunch.
callistahogan: (Default)
I'm capable of writing every day, I am. My life isn't that boring, honest.

It's just that I've gotten caught up in this whole culture appropriation debate that is going on, and I have suddenly grown so determined to learn as much as I can about what's going on that I have been reading everything possible about racism/culture appropriation/white privilege, and am very much looking forward to getting through all the posts over at [livejournal.com profile] ibarw.

I am learning so much too. Now that I think about it, and I mean really think about it, I see the inherent... lack, I guess you could say, of credible, nice, intelligent, passionate POC in books and TV. Off the top of my head, I can only think of three POC off the top of my head that are presented positively in books and movies, but one is a minor character.

The three characters are Foreman from House (who, incidentally, presented me with the first instance of an interracial relationship I've seen on TV), Lee Jordan from Harry Potter (who is black, I think, but I haven't read those books for so long that I can't even remember, which is so sad), and Stephen Black from Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, the book I am reading right now.

And all three of these characters are black.

I can't think of any Asian characters presented positively. Or Chinese characters. Or Japanese characters. Or any other race other than black or white. I'm interested in seeing if anyone else can, because I can't think of any.

But anyway. I said in my post a few days ago that I probably shouldn't discuss this until I learn a lot more.

--

I am very worried/intrigued/apprehensive/hopeful about what President Obama is going to do next. I'm shocked at what he's managed to pass through so quickly and, for the most part, I'm... okay with what he's done.

Closing Guatanamo was probably something that had to be done. And the Global Gag rule, how he repealed the ban on abortion provision and information being taught overseas, might (key word: might) be okay with me as long as they don't present abortion as a simple "getting rid of excess tissue." They need to present abortion as murder, a killing, of an innocent life.

It is my view that abortion should only be necessary if the woman's life is at risk and, even then, a woman should not... rush into an abortion. They should access themselves, the situation, understand what abortion is, before they decide what they are going to do. It should not be used as a "get out of jail free" card, or something akin to that.

And as for doubling our clean energy sources over the next three years?

Can I just say yesyesyes to that?

I know I might not agree with Obama on some things, but I'm feeling kinda hopeful. He can't keep up this pace, but I'm happy with most of the things he's done so far.

--

School.

My first semester of high school is officially over. I'm sure I passed my finals with flying colors (my final grades go something like 96, 97, 98, 99), but I definitely didn't want my first semester to be over. Mr. P was awesome and, while I didn't enjoy some of my classes, I didn't hate them like I'm sure I will hate gym this semester.

*glares into the distance*

If I could still graduate without gym, I would. But no, I need two gym credits before I can graduate. *grumbles* Which I find stupid, because no one really tries in gym, so it's not as though you get an exercise, and isn't there so many more valuable courses you can take? Like creative writing.

Enough complaining, though. At least having gym means that I have at least one class I won't have any homework in. 

--

As for books, it is taking me ages to get through Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke. I've been reading it for two weeks now, and I'm just barely halfway through it. It's not even that I don't like it. It is just slow-going, as I had been warned. But I can't help it; I always have to prove people wrong, or try to, at least.

I can't do it this time, but I can't wait until I finish this book, because then I can read my president's two books. And A Companion to Wolves, by Elizabeth Bear ([livejournal.com profile] matociquala) and Sarah Monette ([livejournal.com profile] truepenny). I really want to see what all the fuss is about, especially considering their parts in the culture appropriation debate this month.

I am so looking forward to those books, but mostly President Obama's. Has anyone read them? What'd you think?
callistahogan: (Default)
Hi.

After my post on Saturday, I've calmed down a lot. Your kind words and hugs (*returns those and gives them out, by the way, in case anyone wants some*) really made me realize that I am not alone in this issue, and that there are some things you just have to keep fighting for the rest of your life. More than that, you guys showed me that it's worth trying to fight, so thank you so much for that. You are all so supportive, without my having done anything to deserve it.

But anyway.

Finals are this week, and I am worried about how they are going to go. I am not worried about my French or Health finals, because I'm pretty sure I've got those all "locked up," so to speak. It's more the skit half of my English final and my Algebra final that I'm worried about.

In English, we're not going to be judged on our ability to act out the scene from Romeo and Juliet, but we are going to be judged on our preparedness. So I have to memorize forty-one lines of Romeo's speech with Benvolio. That shouldn't be too hard, but I'm still worried. Bah, I just have to remember to calm down and kick my shyness all the way to Timbuktu.

Algebra is the one final I'm really worried about. I forgot quite a bit of the things we learned at the beginning of the semester, so on either Tuesday or Wednesday, I'm probably going to spend the entire afternoon studying so that I don't entirely fail. And hey, at least we'll have notecards, so I can put the things I might forget on those. (This is definitely where my teeny tiny handwriting comes in handy.)

So, finals. Might be difficult, might not be. I just really, really, really don't want this semester to end, because then, the second semester starts and I will have gym every single day. BAH.

Lessee.

Oh, I was responding to [livejournal.com profile] technophile's post, about controversial opinions and, on the subject of gay marriage, I wrote the following:

I think marriage as it stands now should be abolished and remade, into two different... strands, or something like that. I think there should be legal marriage, where anyone who wants to enter into a 'civil union' and get the marriage rights as they stand now should be able to get them, whether they are heterosexual, homosexual, or anything in between.

And then there should be "religious" marriages where, if people wish to be recognized as married in the eyes of God, in a church or something like that, they can be. There's no rights involved in this, it's more a personal decision -- and churches reserve the right to marry anyone they like. So if they're a Baptist church, they can choose to "marry" only heterosexual couples, and if they're liberal, they can marry anyone they want. Kinda hard to explain, I know, but basically, anyone who gets a legal marriage gets all the rights available to married couples now, and everyone who gets a religious marriage chooses to do so not to get rights, but to... show love and... honor God or... yeah. Hopefully this is understandable...


Sure, those thoughts merit some fleshing out, but I really do think it's a way to solve the whole problem between gay marriage activists vs. opponents whilst still separating church and state. And "legal marriages" would be sort of like civil unions, except everyone has to get them. So, instead of heterosexuals getting marriages and homosexuals getting civil unions, we all get civil unions. And then that brings in the personal choice of whether they wish to get married in a church, in the "religious" sense.

Might write bigger post on this later... if anyone's interested. And if I can stop procrastinating.
callistahogan: (Default)
It seems so strange, thinking that I haven't updated in six days. I just... haven't had very much to talk about lately, or if I do, I just can't think of how to put it into words. A lot has happened in the past six days, though, and being bored out of my mind has given me a lot of time to think.

First off, there are only about two weeks left in the first semester of this year, and finals are coming up in about eight days. I'm feeling pretty confident about all of them, but half of my English final is making me a little worried.

You see, we have to put on a scene from Romeo and Juliet, and I'm working with my friend, OG (Obnoxious Guy, in case you can't remember). If you've read the play, we're putting on the scene very early on in the play, when Benvolio and Romeo are talking, and Romeo is explaining to him about Rosaline, how he's "in love" with her, and Benvolio asks him to look at other beautiful women, to get Rosaline out of his head. And it's a great scene, showing their friendship, but I just happened to choose to do Romeo. Which means I have to memorize 65 lines.

In two weeks.

Of course, this is coming from the girl who memorized twenty-six lines of Romeo's balcony speech, so I'm not too worried. I have a little less than two weeks, and if I do a little of it every day, I'm sure I'll be able to do it. Am thinking I'll ask OG to get together next Saturday or something so we can practice together. Maybe we'll go in that little room behind the nonfiction section so we can practice without anyone staring at us strangely. (No one really goes into the nonfiction section, unless some seniors are hanging out in that same room.)

Speaking of that play, though, I have to agree with the people who say that Romeo and Juliet are both way too hasty, headstrong, and more in lust than in love, for sure. I'm reading it, and honestly, it doesn't seem they're really in love at all. They're attracted to each other, yes, but it's more infatuation, not love. They know nothing about each other, and you know, they're so willing to throw their lives away. I can think of two times right off the top of my head, maybe more. I can't help thinking how much this tragedy might've been avoided if Romeo and Juliet had come clean about their feelings at the beginning.

Regardless of that, I can see the appeal. It is written cleanly and, even though it seems as though it rambles on and on, it is so precise; in that scene I'm putting on, I couldn't think of a single line to cut. And that's surprising.

Um, okay, this post is going on way too long, but I have so much more to say, so I'll just put the rest under the cut.

Read more... )
callistahogan: (Default)
From a post I just read:

Lumping all Christians in with the only ones you ever hear anything from is... inevitable. Learn to live with it, or make some noise for sane Christianity.

I find this statement especially true after certain things that have happened to me lately. I just loathe it when people clump all Christians into the "lunatics who would start the Crusades again" category. Or the "intolerant, bigoted, homophobic Xtians" category.

I might have conservative values. That does not mean I act on them in a conservative fashion, nor does it mean that I can't see the point of liberal values/liberal fashions. In fact, the way I act when faced with strong issues is perhaps more akin to liberals.

I can't deny that I am a creationist. I can't deny that I take the Bible literally.

I also can't deny the fact that I believe I am intelligent, and that I wish to be respected for my opinions even if you might not personally agree with them (or, heck, even think they have any basis in fact). I also want to make as much noise for Christ as I can.

And for Christians reading this: I ask you to do the same. Make some positive noise for Christ, yeah?

--

I. Hate. Public. Speaking.

Yesterday, I had to memorize Romeo's balcony speech (But soft, what light through yonder window breaks? It is the east, and Juliet is the sun...) and then, today, I had to write it down from memory... and then recite it.

And I obviously got nervous. I suppose it was okay, reciting it, but... that obnoxious guy I've talked about a few times (I might as well just abbreviate his name to OG, 'cause I talk about him fairly often) said I was shaking. I also looked down three times.

Blah...

--

Since my Flist has grown since I last asked this question, and a new year is starting soon, could you all please recommend me some of your favorite books, so I can get a quick start out the gate for the 2009 50 book challenge?

Recommend as many as you want; I'll try and get to them. I'll read anything (fiction, nonfiction) so long as it's good!
callistahogan: (Default)
My throat is so dry today. Sometimes it just gets this way and I have no clue why. At least it only lasts a day, maybe two if it's really bad, so it should be better tomorrow. I still feel kind of blah, though that could have something to do with the fact that I thought I was going to have no school or at most a half day and ended up having to go a full day.

Bleargh.

And there's this really annoying guy that I talk to during classes and, while he's not annoying, he's actually kind of nice, but UGH. Today he was just obnoxious. Of course, that's probably just my stupid hormones lately. They've been wonky.

I read about seventy pages of The Portable Atheist today, which is quite a few considering how some of the earlier atheists wrote.

I also have a new favorite song, Favorite Christmas Story by Capital Lights. It's so sad, but it's just AH. Amazing.

Here's a video, though not very good. I'd recommend you all give it a try. :)

callistahogan: (Default)
I ended up asking my English teacher for an extension on my materialism essay. He granted my request, but also gave everyone else one more day to finish it as well. Considering I was panicking about it (my Sunday Facebook status was "Heidi is panicking panicking panicking about her essay. HELP" or something along those lines), it continually strikes me how things work out the way they do.

My dad said that "sometimes, you have to put things like this in God's hands." And right now? I can see why he says that.

I also feel as though my essay is good. It might not be the best I've ever written, and I've had much struggle in trying to get those stupid words down on paper, but while I was reading it, I found that it flowed fairly well. There are a few little things I might change (the conclusion, to me, still seems slightly abrupt), but this time, I've got to leave it in Mr. P's hands and hope he likes it.

It also seems as though Mr. P thinks I'm the weirdest girl he has ever met in his life. A few weeks ago, when I was reading Freakonomics, he glanced at me and said, "You must be the most eclectic reader I have ever met." Yesterday, when I first brought in The Portable Atheist, he read the back of the book and then said that I was "something else." In a good way.

I think I like being eclectic and "something else." 

But I also want to be normal sometimes. Just sometimes, I want people from school to ask me to do something with them.

Enough of that, though.

I am currently about fifty pages into The Portable Atheist and, believe it or not, I am actually enjoying it. Admittedly, I don't agree with much of what they're saying, but it's fascinating, seeing how atheistic thought has changed, from Lucretius all the way up to Christopher Hitchens. I wish that there was a book of Christian thought throughout the ages, from the time of the Apostles up until now.

That would certainly be interesting.

Also, since I seem to have time to actually do things today, instead of writing an essay, I'm thinking three book reviews will be coming soon. Four more to go until I reach my goal of sixty-five books! Woot!

Oh, and please read this if you're a writer. That's why I like Elizabeth Bear!
callistahogan: (Default)
I am stuck on my materialism essay.

And it's due TOMORROW.

This is all I have. Nothing else at all.

It's all around us, lurking around corners of stores all over the country. We see it in television shows across a wide range of channels, and even in our own homes, infecting us with an intense desire to buy in order to find fulfillment. This phenomenon is simply the latest manifestation of a rather strange philosophy: materialism. Most Americans don't see it, but the truth is simple. If materialism continues to grow in today's culture, so too will greed, commercialization, and indifference toward the plights of those around them.

In its most basic form, perhaps materialism is not dangerous. Materialism, to put it as simply as possible, is the theory or attitude that physical well-being and worldly possessions constitute the greatest good and highest value in life. Objectively speaking, it is possible to uphold this view of the world and still retain a sense of emotional connection to something outside one's physical well-being and worldly possessions.


Help?
callistahogan: (Default)
Yesterday was nice. For once I didn't spend the whole day in front of the computer, which is something I've been complaining about lately. Instead, I started playing games with my family around 12:30, and didn't stop until 4:30 or so. There was only a slight lull when my father went to put supper on (hot turkey soup), but then we went right back to playing.

It felt nice to do something with my family for once. Even though they annoy and frustrate me, they're still my family and I love them. We haven't played games in a while, so it was nice to play for four hours. I never even got bored!

My brother won most of the games (probably because he was the scorekeeper, wink wink), but my grandmother won a few. And I was so determined to win a game that I insisted on another round of Greed (a dice game), which I won by... more than a thousand points, I think.

I also went to youth group yesterday, and that was fun, even though I am still too much of a chicken to ever tell my crush that I like him. Regardless, I enjoyed it; my sister always does the best lessons and she really made me want to read my Bible more often. I am toying with the idea of starting my read-through of the entire Bible and posting my thoughts here as I go along. Would anyone be interested in that?

If so, comment here and I'll add you to a filter. The posts, however, probably won't start until January.

--

Today, it was a typical Saturday. I went to the library, got four books, went to the store with my father, and then came home. I have already started one of my books, Red: The Next Generation of American Writers—Teenage GirlsOn What Fires Up Their Lives Today, edited by Amy Goldwasser, and I'm currently sixty pages into it.

It's amazing so far. I first heard of it from Bookslut's review, and it is just so empowering, to read all these tales by teenage girls, just like me, who are as passionate as I am and just have this utter realness about them that just bounds off the page. And it's nice to hear the opinions of real teenage girls, although I have to wonder: Would it be possible to give teenage guys the same opportunity to speak their minds? Now that would be interesting.

You know, though, I wish I could be like some of those girls. The problem is that I am shy. Crippingly so. And self-conscious. Crippingly so. And I have no clue what I can do about it. Maybe something in this book will help somewhat.
callistahogan: (I write.)
*sigh*

You know that materialism essay? The one I enjoyed writing? The one I thought I was going to do so well on?

Well.

It turns out I did pretty badly on it, as did the entire class. The highest grade was an 86, and I got an 84, along with quite a few other people, namely one of my guy friends, who I thought had a much weaker essay than I did. But apparently not. Both of our essays were weak, but for very different reasons.

My friend's essay was weak because it was poorly organized, rather vague, and had quite a few grammatical issues in it. And while my introduction was strong, I "fell down," as Mr. P put it, on backing up my claims. It was vague, too generalized, and did not have enough concrete support. My "diction" was great, my introduction made him excited to read it, but... I pretty much bombed, considering how well I thought I was going to do on the essay.

So I was quite upset. I thought for sure that I had done well on it, and to see all those red marks on a paper I was proud of just a few minutes ago was something that I wasn't quite ready to see. However, I soon realized that hey, it's constructive criticism, he has good points, and I'm determined to make my essay better than it was.

And if that means that I have to scrap everything but my introduction and start all over?

So be it.

(Which, you know, I've already pretty much decided I'm going to do that. I am going to get a good grade on this essay. Above a 95. I'm determined. Speaking of which, do any of you have any articles/statistics/etc. that would back up a claim saying materialism is bad for modern culture? Thanks a billion times if you do. It would help so much.)

--

I know I said that I was probably going to finish Dust today, but I started reading All the Windwracked Stars, and wow, is that book amazing. I believe it's [livejournal.com profile] matociquala's (sweet, I spelled her name right on the first try!) most recent book, and I adore it. Muire and Kasimir? Pure love. :)

So, needless to say, that'll probably be the next book I'll finish. And then I'll have to tell my friend (look above) that I'm done with it, because he wants to read it as well.

It's also kind of fun to have an author this good on your F-list, even though it's not mutual. Just reading her posts and seeing how utterly normal she is just... warms my heart, really. And her posts are always great to read. So are her books!
callistahogan: (Default)
I just got back from watching Twilight with my sister.

And it was amazing.

Hands down, it was one of the best book-to-movie adaptations I have ever watched in my life. Robert Pattinson is definitely Edward, and there is no one better for Bella than Kristen Stewart. Hopefully it's not spoiling anything to say that it was absolutely amazing. And it stayed extremely close to the book. So if any of you are leery of watching it because it's not very close to the book, don't be, because it is so close, even taking the best scenes from the book word-for-word.

They're also going to make New Moon into a movie too, which I am incredibly excited about, although it will make me cry.

*squees*  I just adored the movie. Watch it if you haven't already!

--

Bah. Materialism essay due for school tomorrow. While I'm having a bit of fun writing it, writing has been so tedious lately, no clue why, and it's hard to even get 1K out in a day.

But I will.

And, speaking of the essay, would anyone like me to post it here when I'm done with it? I'm toying with the idea, but haven't decided yet, so... if you'd like to read it, speak now (or forever hold your peace).

--

Why not?

Meme:

What has surprised you the most about me (if anything) since joining my flist/"friending me"? Was anything completely unexpected or have I always fit the picture of me you have in your head?

Post this in your own journal and see how you have surprised people!

callistahogan: (Default)
I have a love/hate relationship with homework.

(I almost wrote "I have a love/hate homework with homework" there... I think I do need to get more sleep. Desperately.)

On the one hand, I hate homework because it prevents me from being able to write on my NaNo (since I procrastinated early this morning, I only reached 32K). I also hate homework if it comes to the Algebra or too-much-typing-on-serious-stuff English questions. I also hate it because it occasionally strikes me as absolutely pointless.

On the other hand, I love it because the English homework makes me feel really smart when my English teacher contemplates me on my writing and my insight (which he has done several times already, BTW). I also like it because I love being able to answer the aforementioned too-much-typing-on-serious-stuff English questions, especially when I can dig out my Bible and do cool Job/Elie Wiesel comparisons. Those were very fun. As was the whole "Describe how Elie's relationship with God changed during the duration of Night."

Those were really nice.

But now I am tired. Again.

I need sleep.

*plops down in bed and sleeps*
callistahogan: (Default)
One: I will go insane if I see another word count update at either [livejournal.com profile] lj_nanowrimo or [livejournal.com profile] nanowrimo. News of your word count does not merit a separate post, and I hope someone will make a Word Count thread. My friends list is like spammed with all that stuff. How annoying.

Two: Whee. NaNoWriMo, I love you!

This year, it was a much more difficult start than I anticipated, though. I tried writing at midnight, deleted my beginning several times, but I eventually went to bed after about eight hundred words. However,  once I woke up, I wasn't happy with it. I started over and got 4K in one version... only to give up on it and go to my original. I deleted a bit of my original chapter, but then easily wrote over it. So far, I am very happy with what's been going on so far, but I already know I'll need a lot of editing.

But still!

I wrote 5,101 words today (not counting the 4K of the other version that I scrapped), so I'm really happy. I definitely think I will reach at least 10K tomorrow, even though I have a research paper to do and a 100 word paragraph for English.

How is everyone else doing at NaNo? Is it going well?

Three: Yeah. That research paper. It's due on Monday. I might work on it a bit tonight, but if not, that'll be my second priority, right after getting my 5K in NaNo. (I know, school before NaNo and all that, but you know, I don't care.) Blah.

Oh, and that paragraph.

That'll take at most a half hour (it'll only take that long because you can't use one word more than once, btw), so it's not that bad.

But blah.

I have written too many words today. This post is incoherent. I think I will go to bed a bit earlier today. Either that or do something mindless.

(I will definitely enjoy that extra hour of sleep tonight...)
callistahogan: (Default)
My post yesterday didn't say much, I think. I just ended up talking about my English teacher, but more has been going on than that. And since my brain has gone kaput, I won't even bother putting it in some coherent manner. So excuse the possibly-incoherent nature, please.

  • Research Papers: I have one of those evil things due October 31st. It is on French Polynesia, and I have no clue how to start it. Most of my research is already done, but my French teacher's stress on thesis statements seems to be prohibiting my creativity, or something. It's not deliberate, obviously, but I hate trying to force myself into a mold of what I believe the teacher wants, and I feel as if that's what I have to do. So I'm trying to just forget about the thesis and just write it. Oh, and then start that stupid visual, which I have to finish by October 31st. *sigh* So freakin' busy.
  • California's Proposition 8: Is it a bad thing if I am irrationally interested in the results of this? I mean, I live on the opposite side of the country, but I can't wait until I hear the results. I have my own views on this issue, but in interest of not starting a debate, I'll keep those issues to myself. Honestly, I think this is one of the most important things (a portion of) America is voting about this year.
  • Elections: Is it over yet? It seems as if it's just getting dirtier and dirtier as the days tick by. There's only about ten days left, but it feels like ages. John McCain doesn't look like he has much of a chance to win, unfortunately, and I have no clue what to think of Barack Obama. I will soon see, though.
  • Objections to Christianity: Recently one particular issue in regards to Christianity has been coming up constantly. This issue is summed up easily: "What gives Christianity the right to force their views on other people? Why can't I believe what I wish?" Or in other words: "I don't like being commanded or forced to believe in a religion. After all, there can't be just one true religion, can there?" I feel strongly on this issue and wanted to write a post about it, but couldn't figure out how to word it correctly. I might write it sometime this week, if people want to hear it, that is.
  • NaNoWriMo: Eeeeeek. There are only six days and two hours left until NaNo starts. This is exact; at the time of writing this post it is 10:01. I have quite a few things planned out so far, but I still have to flesh things out. I am now officially going into "panic mode." That is, I'm freaking out about not reaching 50K, even though I know I'll be able to do it. I just tend to go into a mode where I am second-guessing myself. That'll go away once I've got about 20K, though.
Oh, and did you know that over 60,000 people have already signed up for NaNo? That means that if only 20% of all writers reached the minimum goal, we would have written 600,000,000 words. That is insane. And that's not even counting the words of the people that won't win, the authors that will exceed 50K, and the writers that are yet to join. I find this amazing.
  • NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month): I'm doing this, I think. Expect lotsa updates in November about NaNo and me moaning/celebrating it. Oh, and if I don't seem to post by say, seven my time, kick me. 'Kay, thanks. :D
  • Brisingr by Christopher Paolini: I think the fact that I have yet to finish this book after a week says everything. This book isn't bad, not at all, but... wow. There are so many things I would change. The book could be cut in half and it would go over the same thing. If it was cut in half, it would have been good thing after good thing after good thing, but as it is, it is just blah. The dialogue is choppy (I mean, honestly, who ends a statement by saying "Those are my thoughts"? And why must everyone speak in such a formal language?), and it just doesn't appeal to me at all. However, it's a decent book. I should have it done tomorrow. I hope.
  • HSM3: I want to watch this movie. That is all.
  • Um, me?: I think I've been discovering a lot about myself lately. I feel as though I'm growing as a person, just by looking back at my reactions. For example, this morning I nearly had a fit and deleted my previous post because my brain kept saying "ugh, my last post was so stupid, why don't I just delete it now?" This just shows the fact that I am too insecure for my own good. And I remember a time when I was young, when I was determined that I would never get insecure, that I would always be comfortable in my own skin.
*sigh*

I feel so naive admitting that now, but it's true. I wish that my younger self is more a part of my older self. Not that I'm not happy with who I am, I guess, I just... don't know how to express that. I'm cripplingly shy, and I just want to quit it. I've been trying to but, like, what can I do? I'm trying, and I guess I'll just have to see where it leads me.

Maybe starting that literary magazine will be good for me...

All right, I've rambled long enough. I can see there are some things that perhaps merit elaborating on (Proposition 8, elections, that objection to Christianity, NaNoWriMo, my... um, me-ness), so just tell me if you want me to say something more. I'll try to do so, if I'm not too busy tomorrow with writing that research paper and doing that visual.

(See my bouncy penguin? Isn't it cute?)

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