Episode 165: Updated Super Schedule and Flyer

PCSA 2016

EDIT: A nasty flu bug unfortunately incapacitated several of our presenters. For fairness sake, the people who could not attend have been removed from this schedule so as to better reflect the presentations that were done in the conference.

Schedule is below:

Friday:

Registration all day in front of the Figueroa Chapel Amphitheater in the Chardon building

All activities except for the evening RHPS showcase will take place in Celis 116

9:30am -10:20am Taller de Narrativa Corta dirigido por el CRE (Centro de Redacción en Español)

10:30am-11:20am Special showing of Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog (singing is encouraged)o

11:30 – 12:20pm “Cosplay 101” Panel by by Madame M.  Rose and Prodigious Spiderman Pr.

12:30 – 1:20 Lunch on your own

1:30 – 2:20pm “Build a Cosplay” Workshop by Madame M.  Rose and Prodigious Spiderman Pr.

2:30 -3:20pm Special showing of “Blink” the legendary Doctor Who episode.

3:30 – 4:20pm “From Person to Persona to… And Why it Matters” by President of the International Entrepreneurship Institute, Jose M. Romaguera

7:00pm in Anfiteatro Figueroa Chapel The Rocky Horror Picture Show viewing and performance.

Saturday

Registration 7:30am-8:30am

Cheat Sheet for Room Numbers regardless of when you present: A= Ch 318 B= CH 319         C= CH 324 D= CH 325

Round 1: 8:30am-9:45am

Panel 1A: (Re)Naming the Fantastic: Developing Identities of Characters and Genres

Three Names, Six Identities. The Lord of the Rings: The Study of Characters, by Paola Rivera and Alina Quiñones

A Clone of One’s Own: Finding Unique Identity in Star Wars Clone Wars, by Frances Zapata

“A Walk Through the Standing Stones”: The Transformation and Reinvention of the Historical Novel within the Outlander Television Series, By Ivette Lopez

1B: Individual, Team, and Cultural Explorations: Changing the Roles of Games

Transcending Identity Through Basketball Culture, by Ismael Medina

“Ready Player Two”: Videojuegos y destrezas de trabajos en equipo en jugadores cooperativos vs jugadores individuales, by Dr. Axel Santos and Joshua Rivera

Transformative Identities in Role Playing Video Games, by Mildred Vargas

1C: Learning New Lessons: Different Forms of Media and Pedagogy

The New Way to teach is to Learn: Hello My Name is Mrs. Experience, by Ashley Carrero

#GeekPedagogy#Fandom#Buzzademia, by Leonardo Flores

Words Have Power: Yūsei Matsui’s Assassination Classroom as a Teacher-student of Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed, by Juan Colon

The Diverging and Growing art of Webcomics, by Luis Laboy

1D: Letting the Freak Flag Fly: Music in My Head

Sex, Drugs and Protest: Analyzing the Formation of Nationalist Youth Identity through Puerto Rico’s Underground Rock Scene, by Leisha Santiago

Tupac to 2pac: How names reflect content and perspective in Tupac and Kanye West, by Kelsins Santos

De La oreja de Van Gogh a Cultura Profética: un acercamiento al análisis poético a través de la música popular contemporánea, by Deyka Otero

10am-12pm Welcome Remarks and Keynote Speech by Bonafide Rojas

Lunch on your own from 12pm-2pm

Round 2: 2:00-3:15pm

2A: You Can’t Sit with Us: (Un)Acceptance of Cultures in Literature, Film, and Society

Psychology of Social Hierarchy in Heathers, by Jennifer Mojica

Lenguaje del Juan Bobo: conceptos de identidad y el “bullying” étnico, by Huana Martinez

La crítica a las ideologías capitalistas en La Guaracha del Macho Camacho y Poder del tiempo (Post data), by Jose Acosta

2B: Finding Comfort in the Chaos: The Necessity of Violence

Stray Gods with No Name: A look into Adachitoka’s Noragami, by Vashti Taraconte

The Many Personas of Lelouch, by Michael Fortys

2C: Coming Out in the 21st Century: LGBT Formation in Ever Changing Models

International LGBT Protections: Ethical Interventionism or Hegemonic Overreach? Looking at the Ethical Implications of Western Pressure to Recognize and Enforce LGBT Protections in the Global South, by Natalie Hanson

Steven Universe On The Controversy Network, by John Hernandez

Fandom vs Canon: The Fierce Awakens with Poe Dameron and the New Star Wars Saga by Gabriel Acevedo

2D: Antichrist Superstars: Pink Floyd Marilyn Manson and the Celebritarian Metanarrative, Panel by Fernando Rodriguez and Pedro Rios

Round 3: 3:30-4:45pm

3A: Reanimating the Everyday into the Hero

Unsung Hero: The Problem Overpowering Circumstances, by Lemuel Cartagena

“What’s the Scouter Say About your Power Level?” Martial Arts Tropes in Anime and Manga, by Christopher Rivera

The Hero Nobody Knows; an assessment into how “One-Punch Man” Could Redefine Modern Japanese Shonen, by Ian Hernandez

Stubbornness and Alchemy: The Significance of the Title Fullmetal Alchemist, by Alyssa Ocasio

3B: Girl Meets World: Perpetrating/Challenging Female Stereotypes in Popular Culture

Heroes of RWBY, by Manuel Estela

“Venuses and Marilyns and Lightnings oh my!” : A comparison of the idealization of beauty between the 20th and 21st century, by Alba Gonzalez

After She Said No: Rape Discourse in Ms. Marvel by Marilyn Sanabria

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Who is the Witchiest of them all?: Reflections on the Dichotomies of the Witch Figure in Modern Television, by Joanne Hernandez

3C: What Makes a Director the Artist? Discovering Authorship in Dolan’s Films, Panel by Raul Samrah, Carlos Carrero, and Samara Perez

3D: Wrestling with Reality: Grappling with Storytelling, Kayfabe, and Identity in WWE Programming, Panel by Edward Contreras, Gabriel Romaguera, and Laura Garcia de la Noceda

Round 4: 5:00-6:15pm

4A: The Masks We Wear: Discovering One’s Identity

Battling Classifications of Gender in the Anime Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu, by Charlotte Colon

Why is it Such A Pain To Find One’s True Identity?, by Ashlene Lebron

Batman: The Man and The Obsession, by Matthew Rodriguez

4B: Shedevils, Anthropomorphism, and Postmodernism… Oh My!

La ausencia del tío y la esquizofrenia de la historia: los significantes de una identidad, by Limary Ruiz

4C: Bigger on the Inside: An Analysis of Doctors and Whovians

The Man Known Simply as, “The Doctor”, by Stedman ReGester

Monster under the TARDIS: The Loss of Human Identity in Doctor Who by Ruth Delgado

 

Episode 164:Saturday Schedule for the Popular Culture Conference

Here is the schedule for all events that will happen on Saturday April 2, date of the Pop Culture Conference. Friday schedule still under construction. More info coming soon.All events on this date will take place in the Chardon building of the University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez Campus.

Registration 7:30am-8:30am

Round 1: 8:30am-9:45am

Panel 1A: (Re)Naming the Fantastic: Developing Identities of Characters and Genres

Three Names, Six Identities. The Lord of the Rings: The Study of Characters, by Paola Rivera and Alina Quiñones

A Clone of One’s Own: Finding Unique Identity in Star Wars Clone Wars, by Frances Zapata

“A Walk Through the Standing Stones”: The Transformation and Reinvention of the Historical Novel within the Outlander Television Series, By Ivette Lopez

1B: Individual, Team, and Cultural Explorations: Changing the Roles of Games

Transcending Identity Through Basketball Culture, by Ismael Medina

“Ready Player Two”: Videojuegos y destrezas de trabajos en equipo en jugadores cooperativos vs jugadores individuales, by Joshua Rivera

Transformative Identities in Role Playing Video Games, by Mildred Vargas

1C: Learning New Lessons: Different Forms of Media and Pedagogy

The New Way to teach is to Learn: Hello My Name is Mrs. Experience, by Ashley Carrero

#GeekPedagogy#Fandom#Buzzademia, by Leonardo Flores

Words Have Power: Yūsei Matsui’s Assassination Classroom as a Teacher-student of Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed, by Juan Colon

The Diverging and Growing art of Webcomics, by Luis Laboy

1D: Letting the Freak Flag Fly: Music in My Head

Sex, Drugs and Protest: Analyzing the Formation of Nationalist Youth Identities through Puerto Rico’s Youth, by Leisha Santiago

From Person to Persona: What’s in a Name? Tupac to 2Pac, by Kelsins Santos

De La oreja de Van Gogh a Cultura Profética: un acercamiento al análisis poético a través de la música popular contemporánea, by Deyka Otero

10am-12pm Welcome Remarks and Keynote Speech by Bonafide Rojas

Lunch on your own from 12pm-2pm

Round 2: 2:00-3:15pm

2A: You Can’t Sit with Us: (Un)Acceptance of Cultures in Literature, Film, and Society

Psychology of Social Hierarchy in Heathers, by Jennifer Mojica

Lenguaje del Juan Bobo: conceptos de identidad y el “bullying” étnico, by Huana Martinez

La crítica a las ideologías capitalistas en La Guaracha del Macho Camacho y Poder del tiempo (Post data), by Jose Acosta

2B: Finding Comfort in the Chaos: The Necessity of Violence

Stray Gods with No Name: A look into Adachitoka’s Noragami, by Vashti Taraconte

“Dreaming of Shooting Myself in the Head,” Memento Mori as the Central Theme of Shin Megami Tensi: Persona 3, by Ian Rolon

The Many Personas of Lelouch, by Michael Fortis

A Ritual Of Errors: Disemboweling Ritual Suicide in Modern Day Japan by Daryl Sanchez

2C: Coming Out in the 21st Century: LGBT Formation in Ever Changing Models

International LGBT Protections: Ethical Interventionism or Hegemonic Overreach? Looking at the Ethical Implications of Western Pressure to Recognize and Enforce LGBT Protections in the Global South, by Natalie Hanson

“Just Pete, like Cher or Prince: Perceptions of Queer Identities in the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse”, by Yalitza Santos

Steven Universe On The Controversy Network, by John Hernandez

Fandom vs Canon: The Fierce Awakens with Poe Dameron and the New Star Wars Saga by Gabriel Acevedo

2D: Antichrist Superstars: Pink Floyd Marilyn Manson and the Celebritarian Metanarrative, Panel by Fernando Rodriguez and Pedro Rios

Round 3: 3:30-4:45pm

3A: Reanimating the Everyday into the Hero

Unsung Hero: The Problem Overpowering Circumstances, by Lemuel Cartagena

“What’s the Scouter Say About your Power Level?” Martial Arts Tropes in Anime and Manga, by Christopher Rivera

The Hero Nobody Knows; an assessment into how “One-Punch Man” Could Redefine Modern Japanese Shonen, by Ian Hernandez

Stubbornness and Alchemy: The Significance of the Title Fullmetal Alchemist, by Alyssa Ocasio

3B: Girl Meets World: Perpetrating/Challenging Female Stereotypes in Popular Culture

Heroes of RWBY, by Manuel Estela

“ Venuses and Marilyns and Lightnings oh my!” : A comparison of the idealization of beauty between the 20th and 21st century, by Marilyn Sanabria

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Who is the Witchiest of them all?: Reflections on the Dichotomies of the Witch Figure in Modern Television, by Joanne Hernandez

3C: Signature Art: Authorship in Xavier Dolan’s Filmmaking, Panel by Raul Samrah, Carlos Carrero, and Samara Perez

3D: Wrestling with Reality: Grappling with Storytelling, Kayfabe, and Identity in WWE Programming Panel by Edward Contreras, Gabriel Romaguera, and Laura Garcia de la Noceda

Round 4: 5:00-6:15pm

4A: The Masks We Wear: Discovering One’s Identity

Battling Classifications of Gender in the Anime Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu, by Charlotte Colon

Why is it Such A Pain To Find One’s True Identity?, by Ashlene Lebron

Batman: The Man and The Obsession, by Matthew Rodriguez

4B: Shedevils, Aliens, and Postmodernism… Oh My!

“Make Me Immortal With A Kiss”: The [Demon]ization of Female Sexuality Within Matthew Lewis’ The Monk and Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus, by Maria Rivera

Little Red Riding Hood’s Convergence too Anthropomorphism The Story of Ruby the Mouse, by Edcel Cintron

La ausencia del tío y la esquizofrenia de la historia:los significantes de una identidad, by Limary Ruiz

Why Space Aliens Have Flippers: The Science Fabulas of Pablo Brescia and Richie Narvaez, by Matthew Goodwin

4C: Bigger on the Inside: An Analysis of Doctors and Whovians

The Man Known Simply as, “The Doctor”, by Stedman ReGester

Monster under the TARDIS: The Loss of Human Identity in Doctor Who by Ruth Delgado

Stuck in Time and Space: Political Rhetoric as Comfort in Doctor Who, by Loyda Pagan

Episode 163: Person to Persona Explanations

I am super psyched about the upcoming pop culture conference (info here) that I am running alongside my amazing colleagues from UPRM and all the undergrad and graduate students from the PCSA. I’m really impressed with the abstracts that are currently in the system but I’ve been hearing some elements of confusion as to the theme of the conference. For those of you new to the conference game, a specific theme in a conference can seem intimidating and may deter you from trying your luck at submitting an abstract. So let me give you some extra tips and tricks as to for dealing with conferences, specifically with current Person to Persona developments. (FYI: I made a post on overall conference protocols from beginning to end worth checking out too here)

The biggest thing when dealing with a conference as a potential presenter is to make sure that your abstract feels like something that the conference organizers want to see. Obviously, you bring your A game of topics you are already researching and have minor to major expertise on. The problem is making sure that your area fits with what conference wants to portray. As you have seen if you know me/actually read this blog, you’ll know that I work a lot with serialization, especially when it comes to webcomics. It’s a niche field that puts me in that odd place between “wait, what?” and “quasi exotic” for areas like literature. Because I am a would be professor, many conferences in my area have to do with pedagogy, where webcomics are a much harder sell. This means that I need to do one of two things: write about something completely different or somehow morph webcomics into a more pedagogical direction. I’ve got some familiarity on both ends but when you’re starting out as an undergrad or grad student you’re not sure how to reshape your topic or going into an area you aren’t super knowledgeable about. It’s a tricky space to maneuver because if you don’t handle it well you don’t get into the conference or potentially worse you get in but your presentation ends up as that one presentation people talk about for the wrong reasons.

When it comes to “From Person to Persona” the first thing that comes to mind is that of names and when people change them. Technically true but there are a lot more dimensions to unravel within so many levels and areas. Let me give you some examples that I imagined when putting the CFP together to help potential submitters stimulate some neurons.

  • Literature: Bad guys changing their names is classic as they shed their old identities. Anakin into Darth Vader or Tom Riddle into Voldemort come to mind. But also once you think of categories of characters, like the Chosen One, suddenly a name is given to you that you now have to live up to.
  • Music: Rappers and musicians who have stage names and how these transformations can set up new personalities to set up a better/more marketable connection to the fans.
  • Pedagogy: I’m normally a shy person but once I’m in educator mode I am extroverted and try to be super entertaining. I’d love someone to talk about different teaching styles, especially with adopting them if your actual personality doesn’t exactly fit beforehand.
  • Linguistics: The whole field of morphology is about figuring out meaning behind words. This isn’t my specialty but I’m sure you smart folk can figure something out.
  • Marketing: Did you know that Chilean sea bass was originally called “Patagonian toothfish”? Sales after the change of the seafood’s title made it sound edible. More examples like these would be amazing.
  • Psychology: Tons of studies detail what happens when you are given a label and it sticks. Bad boys in school are more likely to turn into possible menaces to society. Not to mention the whole stigma of being in prison just ONCE labels you forever as not a good person.
  • Sociology: All of the stereotypes and racism fall into here. There’s a study that says if you have a more “ethnic” sounding name your resume is less likely to be accepted. Or the applications in pop culture of being the “token” minority. So many applications.
  • Video games: With character customization and multiple story paths to go on, today’s video games give players a chance to change their style and thus the perception of the character changes. Think Undertale pacifist runs versus genocidal runs and how you as a character/player change in the process.
  • Politics: Ever noticed how candidates change their voice and mannerisms when the go to different parts of the country while running for higher positions of office. Or how they reshape their image from one debate to another.
  • History: Fun Fact, did you know that Joseph Stalin changed his name to Stalin (aka of steel)  in order to distance himself from his Georgian roots as he rose to power? All this and so many more things.

Hope this helps.

G

Episode 162: Deadline for Conference Extended

We here at the Popular Culture Students Association believe in giving everyone a fair chance to be a part of this year’s iteration of the academic popular culture conference. So rather than rush everyone to submit before the day’s end, we have decided to extend our deadline for abstract submission until Friday, January 29th, 2016 (two weeks from the time of this writing). In case you need a reminder, the original CFP can be found here.

We also have two more announcements to help convince you to be a part of the conference if you haven’t submitted already and if you have submitted well you are going to be extra happy with your academic investment.

First, just like last year this conference is shaping up to make for one of the nerdiest weekends you can find. We are partnering with West-Con Comics and Anime Expo to bring you a special event on Sunday April 3 from 10am-6pm right here at the UPRM campus. Think of it as a regional comic-con with all the geeky stuff you expect. All presenters and guests admission tickets are included with your inscription fee for the conference so might as well stay an extra day and geek out with us. More info on West-Con can be found in their Facebook page here 

Second, we are happy to announce that we have secured our keynote speaker for the conference, Bonafide Rojas. He is poet, musician, and published author who has performed all over Puerto Rico, the continental U.S., and Europe. His style is best exemplified by his motto: learn to live, live to write, write to love, love to learn. You can learn more about him through his website http://bonafiderojas.com/ and you can see one of his performances here as part of the Def Poetry series. We are proud to have him be a part of our conference as we discuss the transformative process between the person and the persona.

You can contact check out his books through http://www.grandconcoursepress.com/

If you wish to contact Bonafide through social media you can do so through his Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram.

 

 

Episode 161: CFP Second Annual Academic Popular Culture Conference

UPDATE: THE DEADLINE FOR ABSTRACTS HAS BEEN EXTENDED UNTIL FRIDAY, JANUARY 29. SUBMISSION PROTOCOL FOR ABSTRACTS REMAINS THE SAME

Update 2: More details on ideas about possible abstracts have been detailed here.

One of the highlights of this year was helping to plan and run the first ever pop culture conference to happen in Puerto Rico. It was an amazing experience and we have all learned a lot from that to make it even bigger, better, faster, stronger. And so we present to you Pop Culture Conference 2: Electric Boogaloo. Well, that was my idea for the title but no one got the joke so we’re going with something more traditional. Below you can find the Call for Papers in PDF, Jpeg, and straight up words on the screen. Take a look, share with friends and send us an abstract. Come on, all the cool kids are doing it.

CFP 2015 From Person to Persona PDF

 

CFP Pop Culture Conference 2015

From Person to Persona:

Exploring Transformative Identity in Authors, Characters, and Individuals

Throughout our lives we are given names that identify us. Birth names are transformed through abbreviations; nicknames are attributed to actions of bravery and/or embarrassment. Our identity changes with the names are given and those we make for ourselves. From George Elliot and Mark Twain to Prince and Lady Gaga, noms de plume show a separation between who we are in real life (IRL) and we are as artists. The second annual Academic Popular Culture Conference invites scholars to question, problematize, and perhaps solve one of the biggest quandaries in literature and in life: what’s in a name?

We are accepting 200-250 word abstracts for individual presentations or 700-750 word abstracts for panel presentations. Undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty from all departments in any University of Puerto Rico campus, as well as independent scholars, are welcome to submit. We ask that participants only limit themselves to one abstract per person. Since the UPR is a bilingual institution, abstracts and presentations can be submitted in English or in Spanish. The conference will take place at the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus from Friday April 1st through Saturday April 2nd in collaboration with the West-Con Comics and Anime Expo which will take place on Sunday April 3rd.

Examples of research in “transformative identity” include but are not limited to:

  • Language/Linguistics and Pop Culture
  • Literature
  • Film and Television
  • Comics and Manga
  • Video Games
  • Race, Gender, and Class
  • Pedagogy and Pop Culture in the Classroom
  • Music

Submission directions:

Please submit your abstracts alongside corresponding biographical and contact information to pcsarum@gmail.com by January 29, 2016

 

 

 

Episode 160: Back to Basics

I have taken the day to write and yet I have found myself staring at an unchanging screen for most of it. The last round of dissertation edits and revisions were brutal and they hurt my pride as a writer but the journey must be continued. I have been writing about serialization for a few years now so it feels like I know pretty much everything about it; my writing about it comes off as passionate at best but that’s not exactly what academia is looking for. So I want to take this moment to try and write about it without the looming judgment of proper clarity, the academic dance of citations and justifying every form of outreach, or even having to use the biggest words out there. Just writing about my topic in a way that makes sense so that hopefully it translates well into the other stuff once edits are finally conquered.

The current version of my title is:

To Start, Continue, and Conclude:

Foregrounding Authorial Performances in the Publication of Serial Fiction in Different Media.

I’d make it longer but I have stricter character limits than tweeting when it comes to this. The central focus is the concept of authorship, ie who is the author and how does he/she create literature. Now, literature is a broad term but I still get in trouble because comics and such aren’t exactly literature in the highest of academic circles so best not to have a few pages to justify said decision over and over again. However, narrative conveys any kind of story while still being fancy enough so let’s use that. I want to study how authors write their stories, see the behind the scenes process. Storytelling is an art (literally one of the fine arts) but also it’s own science once we get into contemporary publishing and all the math involved in whether a book is worthy of hitting the shelves and turning a profit. Since storytelling is informal and can happen anywhere, I use the term narrative production when referring to anything done to build the story. The actions taken by the author from concept to final publication are authorial performances (at least in my book). I use authorial performances comes as an umbrella term for all the different types of performances done from beginning to end of concept to final publication.

As I’m writing this I realize that if authorial performances encompass everything that is narrative production then why not just talk about narrative production and then just subdivide and identify different performances as per Shillingsburg’s writings. Hmm, might need to sleep on this one because it simplifies things a bit but takes away claim to fame of hey new fancy academic word which probably someone more famous than me already coined. Hmmmm indeed.

Now, rather than studying one author to one text, I want to analyze serial fiction because it gives pieces of the publication over time. The division of the narrative process leaves a record of the story,as well as other points of the author’s mindset. A single novel can be edited a thousand times over before it is officially sent to be distributed to the readers. But with serialization, part of the narrative is set and thus any changes need to accommodate the previous installments. Publishing serially means that every part of the narrative needs to be independent enough so that new readers not feel lost but longtime readers get their money’s worth. Each individual installment needs to be published and sold on its own while still building towards something more. In the case of novels, each part is pretty big so it takes a tear even when you’re quick about it. Comics have their own rate of publication but that’s based on the industry standards. Independent authors (especially online) do their own thing.

Now during that space between installments you get something pretty unique to serialization. Readers talk among themselves and can even reach out to the author to critique the story. Authors still choose whether or not to incorporate this feedback  but the influence is clearly present. Even if they’re not voicing their praise or concerns, the readership can still react through sales figures which can ultimately stop the publication outright of the narrative even the story hasn’t been continued. The author-reader-text relationship is thus far more dynamic throughout the context of the same work. Serialization of popular works can take about a decade but comics have characters that have been around for decades.

So what happens when the narrative still gets produced even after the original author has passed away or has retired? Well someone can buy the rights to continue the story on their own. This explains how Superman continues to be published long after Shuster and Siegel went in different narrative directions. I then go into this whole thing about authors as individuals are being changed into authors as corporations that continue serializing ad nauseum.

Beyond that, well things start getting complicated, stay tuned to see what pops up next.

G

Episode 159: New Beginnings and Trying Once Again

I have looked upon this screen for what seems like hours as I am continuously distracted from actually typing things out. The words have circulated in my mind so much that my subconsciousness has lapped itself like my last attempt at playing Mario Kart with a busted controller (always blame the controller). It seems like months since the last time I have actually written anything in this blog. It’s not that my life has not had moments worth sharing on the intellectual or emotional fronts but rather that the act of committing this moment to this digital archive did not feel like a priority. As my own writing shifts between the endless cycles of writer’s block and all nighters for an eventual dissertation defense, the blog fell to the wayside. The irony became more palpable as I would tell students to go through here and check on some of the more worthy posts while still checking the stats to see if any errant Google searches would bring a momentary reader my way. It was passive and one of the best pieces of advice you can get in being a better writer or anything is to never be passive.

And so I restart my writing on the blog, maybe never reaching the ambitious goal of midnight writing on a near nightly rate but existent nonetheless. It’s not exactly a reboot of the mission to share my thoughts on serialization with the occasional personal stuff and some weird fanfiction posts. And so, I want to write on what is it that gets us started once again. At any moment, what feels like second nature will somehow lose it’s mark on our identity. Life gets in the way and some activities just sort of get lost in the scheduling. With new chapters in life, the old stuff no longer becomes the primary. Hobbies, traditions, even friends get shuffled to the bottom of the deck and are almost forgotten. But it’s still there…

We as people are always changing. We like to think that we become better, that our immaturity is immolated, our naivete enlightened, and maybe our selfishness stifled out. But the essences are still there and our guard never really drops for fear that our old selves arise from depths unknown like lovecraftian monsters. I like to think that the same situation exists within our good spots. That the jaded romantic can give out a rose, the exhausted runner can pound the pavement, the out of practice musician can play a favorite tune, the uninspired painter can give life to the canvas, and that the silent writer can make words mean more that what the dictionary spells out for us. These instincts may be buried but can be unearthed with just the right inspiration and the will to try once again.

My own inspiration to restart and continue came in two facets. The first with one of my favorite writers of all things geeky, super nerd Max Landis. The man is talented and prolific in making scripts for some very original material alongside the reworks and sequels that may never make it to the screen. One of his most recent videos tackles the problem of the blank page, a fear that terrorizes me and pretty much everyone else that is writing for something. And yet Max takes that fear and turns it on his head, that maybe if you can’t conquer the empty screen then maybe being a writer is not for you. Full video here: 

I took it as a challenge to no longer let the fear of the unknown or of that failure keep me from starting once again. One more inspiration came with another blog that a friend pointed my way not so long ago. It is raw and emotional while still being poetic. It serves as a journal that lets you peek into someone else’s life not as a voyeur or an NSA specialist but rather as a frame shot of life. Not necessarily told narratively but as snap shots in an old school collage. I recently reblogged one of the first entries but if you want to check out the whole blog then head here.

Well that seems like a good first step. Let’s see where the journey takes us.

G