Life Is Not A Story Book: Why Realistic Fiction Is Hard For Me To Write
Jan 11th, 2015 by Coral

Life is not a story book. I have recently identified this as one of the reasons I struggle so much writing realistic fiction.

Here’s where I’m coming from, okay, in a story you set things up. You foreshadow, you hint, you mislead, and you tie up loose ends at the end of the book. Happily ever afters don’t have to be expanded on, you can leave the blank page. Writing a story, you can change it. You can manipulate every aspect of the story, and you understand it, too.

Life isn’t like that. First off, life doesn’t always foreshadow. Sometimes things happen and they had no warning. There was no ominous music in the background, nobody was acting strange. Bad things happen. People get hurt, people betray you, people weren’t who you thought they were. Accidents happen with no warning. Some tragedies do have warning signs, yeah, but not all, and it’s so much harder to see it in real life.

Life doesn’t give hints, not always, though it will mislead you. You will think you have something figured out, and end up completely wrong. About other people, about relationships, even about yourself. You don’t get to be in control in real  life.

Real life also leaves loose ends. There isn’t always an explanation for things, there isn’t always an answer, and there isn’t always a happy ending. Life doesn’t make sense. That’s just how it is.

So, when I write realistic fiction, it feels like I’m cheating. I can’t think of interesting things that don’t seem too….preconceived?  Things that don’t seem to good to be true, I suppose. Real life can be funny, or compelling to hear about, cool things do happen. Sad things happen, funny things happen. But making them up?

It doesn’t feel real to me. I don’t know, this realization might eventually help me be able to write better realistic fiction, but for now it’s just a thought. Comments or response thoughts to this would be greatly appreciated. Until next time!

Our Moment
Jan 8th, 2015 by Coral

I wish I could freeze time as I stand on the sideline, shoulder to shoulder with my closest friends. The stands are filled with thousands of people along with our competitors, cameras and lights shine on us from every angle imaginable. I feel so small for a moment.

Then the Drum Major lifts her hands and the show begins. I can feel the people around me silently counting until the moment we take the first step.   The small feeling disappears as I raise my Bass Clarinet to my lips and we play the first notes. The sound fills the stadium and my entire body, giving me power I have never felt before or since.

These feelings are not just the emotions of the music, they are the emotions of the past four years. Every moment I spent working to this is put onto the field, on display for the judges to see, to say whether we deserve to be here. Every moment is poured from our hearts and into the performance.

I learned Bass Clarinet my freshman year in order to be here. Sections became families, friendships were created and strengthened. We sang the school fight song on the bus and all gathered in a mass circle for the friend song after every competition. We trick or treated to each others hotel rooms whenever we traveled on Halloween. We carried on band traditions older than any of us are.

All of these moments, and more, fuel the music we play. A crescendo builds and the tempo matches my heartbeat pulse for pulse.  Every movement I make has a story of how I learned where to step, how it changed, and how the music bends the show.

The cheering explodes in the stands as we execute a complicated maneuver accompanied with intense music.

We enter the finale and I am invincible. Every step is calculated, practiced, perfected. Every note is tuned and clear.

The crowd disappears.

The judges, the cameras, all of them disappear until it is just me and my band.

We have laughed on the good days, we cried on the bad, we supported each other. The crescendo of the last note is distilled euphoria.

We are a band. We are family. This may be our last show, our last stand, but we will make it count.

We command the attention of the audience. No one can look away from us. They have just grasped that there is more meaning to the show than they can ever comprehend. This moment is our souls on display, shining and singing to be heard.

This is our victory. We worked harder than ever before and made something beautiful. Win or lose doesn’t matter as we turn and leave the field. The joy is tangible between us as sweat drips down our brows. We catch one another’s eye as we leave, and without breaking formation we communicate what we feel. Accomplished. Invincible. Incredible.

This is our moment.

New Semester. New Year. New Goals.
Jan 6th, 2015 by Coral

Well, a new semester is starting for me on Wednesday. I’m going to have some fun classes, and a different schedule, but I’m going to get back on posting. I know I let it slide over the holidays (Partly due to internet crashes, I swear) but I will still be posting. Maybe not every day, but at the very least every week. Poetry, book reviews, stories. The works.


With the new year, most people are making resolutions. Resolutions has never been a good word for me. Through my experience, personally, I can’t follow through with new years resolutions. Instead I like to set Year Goals. So, to keep me accountable, I’m going to share some of those goals.


Goal Number One: Get My Work Published


For real! Not that my blog isn’t great, but I’m going to finish polishing up some of my work and try to get some good recognition out of it. That’s what I’m going to school for, right? I have several things almost ready, and if I set my mind to it and get down and do the work, I can get it ready in no time. So, that’s the first goal.


Goal Number Two: Get More Connections

I am going to network like crazy, try to find a niche in the widespread writing community and find more angles to get feedback on my work. While I may not agree with the phrase “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know,” I do agree that WHO I know does have at least something to do with my success. Knowing good people would at least speed up my progress as a writer, that’s for sure.


Goal Number Three: Get Children’s Book Illustrated And Published

So, here’s where you guys come in, I hope.  I have written (another thing that I’m polishing) a children’s book called “the Quiet Dragon.” My goal for The Quiet Dragon is to self publish it and donate the proceeds to a research fund for Potter’s Syndrome. Potter’s Syndrome is a birth defect that means a baby doesn’t develop kidneys, and therefore has stunted lung development. It is nearly always fatal, very hard to treat, and has to be caught before the baby is born for there to be any hope of survival. My youngest brother, Freddie, died of this, and I have another friend who is currently pregnant with a baby that has Potter’s Syndrome. My donations would go toward research to help find the cause of it, and hopefully lead to better treatment and prevention of this disease. My hope is that I can find an illustrator that will help me by doing the art for charity. That’s one of my goals, so we’ll see how easy that one turns out to be.

December Sky
Dec 26th, 2014 by Coral

The December sky is low and grey,

heavy with frozen promises.


The December crowds scatter every which way,

tallying gains and losses.


December contradicts its very own being,

an end that leads to a beginning,

the dark of the clouds and the bright of the snow,

and soon, oh too soon, December must go.


The December ground is cold and tough,

sucking in the sun’s heat, which is never enough.


The December ground is soft and white,

powdery snow bringing children delight.


December has so many different meanings,

interpret the cold as you will.

With darkness that rolls, and the light of souls,

December is a frozen thrill.


You can tell a lot
Dec 20th, 2014 by Coral

You can tell a lot about a person from their writing. What they write in books, poetry, and their journals. Sometimes, for journals, however, the more fun aspect is how little you can tell, and how much possibility is left open.

In honor of the Christmas season, I’m going to be including my siblings in a lot of my new posts. Journal entries, for one, is something my sister and I came across while cleaning out a closet earlier. We got a good laugh out of these.  They can also be great opportunities for writing prompts. For example, we will be taking a look at some journal entries from my sisters fifth grade class journal.


To start, we have some from the beginning of the year where she gives us an actual good idea of who she was as a fifth grader.  Read the rest of this entry »

Countdown Til Dawn
Dec 12th, 2014 by Coral

This is what I wrote in response to a writing prompt. The prompt was to write a scene that involved a count down. I used a character from part of a story I’m working on and this is what I got.


I gasp for air, stumbling through the thick bramble. Thorns and broken branches scratch my face and arms, but I ignore them. I have to make it back before dawn breaks. I have only seconds left, the faint glow is already making its appearance.


I make the mistake of glancing back. My eyes can see perfectly in the dark, I see the first tendrils of dawn reflecting off of their pale feathers. My own sable wings are tucked to my back in an attempt not to catch them on the thorns and slow me down.

Eight. Read the rest of this entry »

Be Who You Are: Writers
Dec 10th, 2014 by Coral

Being a writer isn’t just an occupation. At least not the way I’ve seen it done. Being a writer is a way of life, a method of living. Writers see the world through a different lens than everyone else. Poets, short story, and novel writers alike all have a literary viewpoint of the world. Every writer has their own personal perspective, and they can share some of their enlightenment through writing. That’s what makes us special.

My being a writer affects how I live my day to day life, believe it or not. I carry a notebook and pen with me everywhere, I ask people how to spell their names and where their names come from when I hear cool ones. I take pictures of cool stuff so I can remember it later. I will drop what I’m doing to write down an idea, even just for a cool sentence, at any time of day. I have woken up in a cold sweat with poems that needed to be written down and lost sleep for them.

Sometimes, people tell me I should “Take a break” from writing, they want me to “live my life, stop stressing over your work.” Those people clearly don’t understand who I am, not quite.  I can’t just “take a break,” from being a writer. That’s preposterous! I could no sooner take a break from breathing! I can’t stop looking at the world the way I do, because that’s who I am.

Yes, people will think it’s weird. People won’t understand, may even ridicule you for your ways as a writer. But you know what? Don’t let them scare you, don’t let them get you down. Writers change the world. Writers capture history, emotions, legends and myth. What a painter does with color, we do with words.

Writing is an art. We, writers, are artists. We can do things no one else can, NO ONE else can write your story, or the story of your character. Do not let people heckle you into trapping all that inside you, give it release. Let the world see what wonders you are capable of.

In the past, I have been extremely self conscious about my writing. It took a long time for me to let other people read what I write, and I still sometimes have anxiety that people won’t like my stories. I have to remind myself that’s not what’s important. If I like it and think it’s good, that’s good enough for now. Eventually, if I try hard enough, other people will see what I see, and they  will feel what I feel, and experience my stories. I can get other people to taste my worlds, but only if I keep writing and let people read what I write.

That’s the writing thought for today. Keep being a writer, in everything you do!

Book Review: City of Bones
Dec 9th, 2014 by Coral

In Cassandra Clare’s “City of Bones,” I was instantly transported into a vibrant world of demons, magic, and intrigue, right in the middle of New York. From page one, the plot was compelling, and the characters had incredible depth.  Clare artfully introduced me into her secret world, not giving everything away, but, at the same time, not letting me drown in confusion.

The story quickly took a direction I didn’t expect, and continued on an exciting journey through the past, present, and future, all hanging in the balance.

Clary, our main narrator, is a girl with a definite personality and a healthy dose of spunk. She’s thrown into a world of mystery, and handles it excellently. The cast of characters also includes her best friend, Simon, who I absolutely adore. Tough as nails Jace, who took some getting used to, and Alec and Isabelle, those characters and their relationship have a special place in my heart.  Each character has strengths and flaws, and they feel like real people.

Cassandra Clare leaves nothing to guesswork, she knows exactly what’s going on in her story, and I could tell, even when I didn’t know exactly what was going on. This is a series I look forward to finishing, and I would highly encourage reading it. Action, adventure, mystery, romance, and fantasy, all wrapped up into a beautiful book. It also gives a fresh feeling, completely different, in some ways, from other books I’ve read.


Cassandra Clare, congratulations, your book is fantastic.



A Day In The Life: Part 1 of Ayla’s Archives
Dec 8th, 2014 by Coral

Ayla pushed the kitchen door open with her hip, balancing two large trays of food on either hand. She weaved in and out of the tables, putting down plates of sandwiches, steaming bowls of soup, and mugs of coffee as she went. Most of the faces were familiar, local friends who came into the “Dish for Trish” Diner regularly, others had the distinct tourist look.

One of the diners stood out. A boy about Ayla’s age, 21, with shockingly orange hair that was cut raggedly and uneven. He wore a long, black coat, a faded tshirt and ripped jeans. He sat with his shoulders hunched, eyeing the room as though it could be secretly full of poisonous frogs.

Discarding the now empty trays, Ayla went over to the boy. “Good afternoon, how are you?” She said with a smile, flipping her curly blond hair out of her face with a quick flick of her chin.

“Fine.” the boy said, looking like he’d just remembered where he was, “I’ll have a number six. No onions. Pepsi.”

“Sounds good, anything else?” Ayla jotted down his order, then tucked the pencil back behind her ear. As she did so, the boys eyes fastened on her wrist.

He stared at her, not answering her question. Ayla shifted uneasily. Read the rest of this entry »

My Future Reader poem
Dec 7th, 2014 by Katie Lee

In my Creative Writing class, we were supposed to write a poem about what we hope our future reader will be like. This is what I wrote.


My Future Reader

Her eyes would gleam with wish for adventure

Her hand soft upon the page

Her heart open to all to ensure

her mind could set the stage


Of all the stories in the world

her heart would hold mine dear

And while upon her couch she curled

She give both laugh and tear


And when the climax came at last

she’s read the night away

and all the sleeping hours would pass

to leave her tired in the day


At last a day would come around

when she and I would meet

She’d stand and stare without a sound

then squeak out a basic greet


I’d laugh as we’d converse as nerds

And her love of books swiftly I’d see

I’d smile and say in genial words

“Dear girl, you’re just like me.”


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