Tag Archives: Writing

Why Do I Write?

This is a simple question that deserves a complex answer. Using answers that are expected— such as it being therapeutic, or me being required to do it for my job, or even just for the pure joy of writing— no longer satisfies me. I want to understand the emotion I derive from writing. Does my writing grant me blissful ignorance to the world’s problems? Does it compound the issues I face as a college student?

Regardless, one thing is certain, writing provides me with some form of comfort. While this is a common occurrence for writers, I find myself wanting to know more about the inner workings of my own personal writings. I want to unravel what goes on in my head as I write. Being that I garner no real thrill from academic writing, this self-discovery will mostly relate to my creative writings. After all, it’s the dreaded time of the year that Millersville holds their (or a different verb) final exams.

Throughout my personal history, I have had multiple instances of straying into the dark path of depression and anxiety. During those times, my creativity came alive; and with that creativity came a flair for dark and disturbing writings. When I attended Harrisburg Area Community College (HACC), I wrote a piece called “Begotten by Hate.” Looking back, this piece was objectively horrible. Reading that story brought me back to a time where the dark thoughts ran rampant. I hated everyone and everything, and the best way I knew to express it was through writing. Thankfully, I am well past that point in my life.

Nowadays, my writing has taken on a more existential flair. My writing is filled with questions about life and what it truly means to be happy. I know it may seem odd to question happiness, but that is how I navigate my way around such emotions. Happiness feels like a foreign concept, as for most of my life, I have felt the complete opposite. Writing is a beacon of hope in these instances, and it is interesting to see what types of conversations I get in with myself over the meaning of life.

A complex answer as to why I write is that I want to not only inform the public, but I want to protect the American people. In recent news, a journalist was butchered in Turkey at a Saudi Arabian embassy. Parts of my family now question whether or not my career path is safe. In all honesty, it does not matter.  In times like these, the need for journalists is greater than ever before.

The reason I write is because it is my duty to use this talent to help others and inform the public. And, though it may seem selfish, I want to prove skeptics wrong. I have autism and I want to prove that it is not, and never will be, a hindrance to my writing. I was told in high school that I would never graduate, and that I would never end up making it to college. Sufficient to say, I kicked down that door of doubt. I am thriving in college and I credit that, in great part, to my writing skills. I proved that guidance counselor wrong and I am continuing to prove that autism does not automatically mean you won’t make it far in life. Autism is not a hindrance to neither me, nor my writing.

Also, huge shout out to a good friend of mine. My EIC at the Snapper is a great human being and helps me out a ton. She even edited this for me!

 

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School is steadily approaching

I start school in six days. The fall semester to be a little more specific and I am getting the before school jitters this week. It seems odd to me this time, however, because I have been in school all summer during all three sessions. The main factor, in my opinion, that is causing me this anxiety and stress is the amount of things that I am taking on this upcoming semester.

To start, I am taking two classes, Fundamentals of Math and Feature Writing and Magazine Journalism. That will not be an issue; I just finished Math 090 with a passing grade and I feel pretty confident going into this Math class. Feature writing and Magazine Journalism will not be a problem either. I write for the school newspaper as opinion editor and my articles could always be transitioned into features easily. The two classes I am taking are not the origin of my stress.

I got a job that I will be doing over the Fall semester and I am grateful that I am able to do this as well. My fear here is that I will not be able to go to work sometimes due to my anxiety. I am working on ways to combat this cycle of worry and so far I am having positive results, which is quite good for me. I desperately need the money and my Social Security Disability is not quite up to how much I need for my bills and other expenses. Here’s hoping to a postive experience at work. I really need this to work.

There are a couple other organizations that I am affiliated with this semester as well. I am, like I stated above, the opinion editor of the Snapper, which is the school newspaper. I am greatly looking forward to working on my writing skills and my interpersonal skills with the staff of the Snapper. It has become a place I am comfortable at and I hope it continues to be that kind of place. I have no reason to think otherwise, but my mind likes to do something I call, “Catastrophizing.” What this is, is when I think, I go to the worst possible outcome and latch onto it and fill myself with dread and anxiety over a overly exaggerated manner. It is not healthy for me at all, but it is a bad habit that I have picked up. Something outside of my self-reflection is needed to combat this and to that end I am in therapy with some talented individuals.

The other organization that I am a part of is the Magic Players of Millersville. A club that is dedicated to the trading card game, Magic the Gathering. I love a format in Magic called Commander or EDH. There was a resignation over the summer and I became the president of the club. I hope that I am able to perform well and gain some more social and leadership knowledge. Just like the Snapper, however, I catastrophize all situations that I think might pop up.

I am hopeful that none of my negative thinking will severely impact me this semester. I really want to have a semester, just once, where I do not have to miss class due to major mental health issues. The same for work. It always frustrates me that this kind of stuff happens to me on a weekly basis and I get fed up with my inability to do tasks that I have either set for myself or have been set for me.

Panic and anxiety attacks are just something that I go through and I understand that, but if there was a way for me to lower that anxiety just a little bit; I think I would do a lot better. The same thing can be said for my depression, which has, on multiple occasions, caused issues. Either with tasks I need to do, my attendance, issues with other people and in general feeling like I am not worth the time or effort that others put into helping me.

Right now, I am nervous about school, but more of the excited nervousness instead of the anxiety based one. I hope I have a good semester and to those who read and also go to school I hope you have a great semester as well!

Rebel Cause Lancaster

I have recently become involved in a charity organization in Lancaster, PA. It is known as Rebel Cause Lancaster.

What is great about me joining Rebel Cause is the validation that it gave. Prior to learning about the group I was close to a point where I did not know what to do with Star Wars. I still loved the franchise, but I had no one to share this love with. I am not even sure how I came across Rebel Cause, but I wrote an article about them for my school newspaper, The Snapper. You can find the article here.

I never imagined what would become of my interaction with Kaden Patrick, the illustrious leader of Rebel Cause, at the American Bar and Grill in Lancaster. Long story short, I joined up with Rebel Cause as a social media/ writer guy.

We recently had an event at a bar in Lancaster called Rumplebrewskins. The event was a great success and I am amazed at how the Star Wars community came together to raise money for Water Street Rescue Mission. It made me proud to be a Star Wars fan once again.

I had lost that pride prior to meeting Kaden and getting it back was one of the greatest feelings I have ever had. Star Wars means many things to me, but the main thing is it was, and continues to be, my rock. It has always been there for me and I will always appreciate what it has done for me.

Knowing that Rebel Cause has my back now is great. Like I said earlier, I feel valid in my love for Star Wars.

Thank you Rebel Cause. You turned out to be my New Hope.

Why am I so worried?

Obi-wan may have been sarcastic in the gif that I used above, but I am doing a good job, yet I have been having doubts as of late about myself and it is affecting my daily life in unproductive ways.

I am always worried that I am failing at something. It does not have to be anything concrete either, it can be something like life.

An example of a thought that I had the other day, “I am failing at life.” I know that this is an absurd statement and I am not failing at life, but I still feel like that sometimes. As of late, I have gotten better at conveying my thoughts and emotions through FaceBook messenger. There are a few people who let me vent to them and help me get through my emotions.

One of those people I developed feelings for and I convinced myself that I had these feelings for a long time. Even though they manifested due to an issue that I was having with someone else that we both knew. I made a fool of myself and I felt I was close to losing a dear friend of mine due to things that I said.

That is another thing that I perceive that I am failing at. That being relationships. Up until now, I have been terrified of being in meaningful relationships and I never truly pursued one, save the one from this past summer that I messed up. The past couple of weeks I have asked two people out. I was turned down by both and I think that caused a catalyst for me. I started behaving differently and I said things that I regret now.

The first girl I asked out was okay with me after the fact and I still would like to believe that we are friends, but there is a voice in the back of my head that says that I messed up any chance I might have had. Just at being friends, not in a romantic sense, and I let that voice’s power grow. That led to the situation with the second girl I asked out. She was kind enough to let me down easy and I appreciated that, but I developed this perverse thought that I could talk to her about anything. No boundaries and I said things and sent her things that I greatly regret. That voice telling me I was failing was in loudspeaker mode at that point.

Then, she forgave me. It was that simple. She forgave me for my stupidity and set boundaries that I would not cross. Even though I feel horrible with how I treated her, I am thankful that the situation happened. It showed me a great many things about myself that I had not realized up until that point.

Those things being that when I become attracted to someone I need to look at my inner self and tell it to slow down and be thoughtful. This is something I was not in the last situation I put myself. The second thing is that I need to really soul search myself. Not just the cursory glance like I usually do, but an in-depth analysis. I have feelings that need to be sorted out. I have habits that need to be broken.

As a result of all of this that has been happening, I have been having nightmares for the past four days. I hope by writing this piece I can stop them. I will let you guys know tomorrow if I have one.

Also, for a fleeting moment, I blamed my autism. It was just a moment, but long enough that I noticed it. I feel half sick that I would blame autism for this. I have beaten autism; at least I thought I had. I refuse to use it as a crutch though. I want to stand on my own and take the responsibility of what I have been doing. A lot of it has been wrong and I am working to fix it.

It’s good that I have recognized that I have a problem that needs to be addressed though and it is something that I can talk to with my support network. It is something that I have to talk with about with my support network.  I need to leave the thoughts I have been having behind and start moving forward. There are things I would like to have and I am working on ways to get those things. I got a job, but I am not sure when I start, but I am really excited for that.

Finances have been an issue for me as of late too. I am on disability and I am having a hard time making ends meet, hence the job. I am just worried about how much I am allowed to make versus my disability income. It seems to be a fine line; one that I need to explore. I also need to cut expenses. I make it sound easy, but it will require me to get rid of things that I love. Such as my magic cards. They hold value and I have need of value, so I will have to start selling some of the more expensive ones. I also need to start budgeting a lot better. I used to just spend money and hope that my parents could bail me out, but that is something that I need to stop doing. I am living in a house separate from them and there is no need for them to have to worry about my finances.

To go back to the title of the post, “Why am I so worried?” I think I have the answer to that question. I am an adult and I have to be responsible to take care of everything on my plate, and if I cannot start taking things off of the plate. Start dedicating more time to productive activities and do things to help me further my goals. It’s going to be a hard adjustment for me, but I know I can do it.

Thank you so much for reading. I really appreciate it.

 

A place that should not feel comfortable, yet it did

I just left New York City. I have been there since Wednesday. I was there because I was attending a conference for journalism. I was quite content there, much to my surprise. Cities are usually a place I do not feel very comfortable in. All the people and all of the sensory things.

I was fine though. Being self aware helped me out for this trip. I had one anxiety spike the whole trip. Not to say there were no stresses, but I did well and had a lot of fun.

My fear going on this trip was that it would be a repeat of last year’s trip and I am happy to say I was wrong. I attended panels and networked with professionals in the journalism field.

I was able to build connections with the rest of the staff for the paper too. I cherish the connections I made this past weekend.

The trip was a success on many levels. I revealed sides of myself that I have never done before. I was communicating what I needed a lot better than usual and I adapted to situations when the need arised.

I am thankful for the group I was able to go with. They are a great group of people. I’m glad that I know them. I never thought I would be at this point in my life. Where I have friends thar legitimately care about me. Before, I did not think I was worthy of that. Now, my thinking differs from that perception.

I learned stuff about myself too during this trip. I revealed my super analytical side to a member of staff and that person is now a confidant for me. I have three now! I never in my life thought I would have such good friends.

Thank you Snapper. I really appreciate you guys.

Back at School, Stress gets renewed

Being back at school has brought with it a sense of accomplishment and a sense of dread. The feeling of accomplishment is the fact that I am able to even go to school. That makes me happy. The sense of dread comes from the fact that I have no job currently. I am afraid that I will fail at finding a job and fail my roommates. I do not want them to shoulder the financial burden.

Continue reading Back at School, Stress gets renewed

I’m writing a book! For the past ten years?

I am sure a lot of you know about Game of Thrones and other epics such as that. What I bet you did not know is that I have built a world like that and that I have been writing a book about it for the past ten years!

The reason I am bringing this up is to give myself a reality check. I am not going to finish this book. Sure, I have 400 pages typed up, sitting on my computer, but I am not happy with it. I want it to surpass my expectations and I fear that this hindrance is stopping me from proceeding with it.

I am 25 years old and I will be turning 26 in a couple months. That means that I have been working on the SouLess project for almost ten years. What I find fascinating about this is that the core story has never changed. Even with all that I have been through, it has never changed. The story is an unreliable narrator and main character style book. Nothing that the two main characters can be taken for truth, and yet, all of it is a truth in some way shape or form.

To give some background on the story, it was originally going to be the plot of a video game. A group of my friends from high school got wind of the story and it translates into a video game plot quite well. I wanted the game to be completely open world and no red banding at all. Red banding is a way developers limit where you can go without physical barriers. Unfortunately, it never worked out and the idea was scrapped, kind of.

The story sits, to this day, in my head and on a hard drive that I have misplaced. Barring that I ever find the hard drive, I think it is safe to say the SouLess project is dead. I still love the story and I would love to tell it sometime, but that time is far in the future. I need to finish college first, get a job, and pay off my debt. Then I can freelance a little and write on the side.

Regardless, I enjoyed the time I had working on SouLess, and I will cherish that time a lot. I have bigger and better things to get to now though and I know that I will return to Lucius one of these days.