Sunday, October 20, 2013

Nice Stuff on the Internet Lately, Installment One

So, it's Sunday now. And predictably, it's 6 PM on this Sunday and I have yet to do my minimal actually-due-tomorrow homework, let alone my supplemental essay for my dream college, let alone my three poems that I have to make up, let alone study for my AP Euro test, let alone review that girl's book on Figment to thank her for helping me out with my Common App. It's OK... it's a gorgeous fall day outside and I am sure to finish everything before going to sleep. Well, at least everything I need to.

Today I went to work at the library, right past the big October street fair on the main street of my tiny New Jersey suburb. Every year there's one of these, and every time I have to walk to work, which is fine because the fair's usually on a goldenly-warm, grayly-cold day with crunching leaves and branches and the smell of wood smoke, and I can walk back home past my old elementary school, and the feeling of the street fair, even though I never buy anything, is what makes me think that there are, albeit very few, small compensations for living in this dull sort of place. And today must have been the last time I'll ever walk through the October street fair, because this time next year, hopefully, I'll be in Bronxville, New York, studying and writing. It was the sort of goodbye that isn't so bad.

Anyway... since I haven't got much in the way of actual original content for my first actual post, I figure I'll do something that most people would probably like, which is a link collection. If there's anything I'm good at, it's scouring the Internet. I came up with a list of categories for links for different stuff people might like, and now I get to pick out stuff I saw on the Internet this week that might fit it. Yay! Here you go:

Pretty photos/art
106 beautiful photos of street art around the world. I think street art is one of the best parts of a city, like the city itself is coming alive through the cracks on the sidewalks and the plants growing on the sides of a building. I know someone put effort into making them, but I'd like to think that in a thousand years people will think they came into being on their own.

Stuff about travel
I came across this awesome blog yesterday while reading Cracked. This writer is traveling the world in an attempt to pinpoint a new set of Seven Wonders of the World. There's already been a project to do that, I know, but this is a more personal viewpoint. He made a list of candidates and now he's visiting each to size them up. I liked reading through some of his views on different monuments.

An article about books or writing
The article I mentioned in my last post, this is a fantastic lecture on why libraries, reading, and daydreaming are important. It's by Neil Gaiman, so that's great, of course. And by "lecture" I don't mean you have to listen; it's transcribed.

A good work of writing
I didn't just find this this week, but I figure I'll recommend a Figment poet, whose work is amazing.
Also, I don't know if this counts as writing, but it's a comic with a ton of words, so I guess it counts. My absolute favorite webcomic and one of my favorite things in general, Subnormality, just recently updated (and there can be months between updates so this is an event), and I was just taken aback by how amazing the update was. Here it is so you can enjoy it as well.

A funny article or list
These will usually be from Cracked, of course. My favorite thing to read around Halloween is Cracked's selection of annual Halloween-themed articles, so this list of (only out-of-context, obviously) creepy Japanese Halloween costumes was great. Gosh, that sounds racist, and it kind of is, but it's poking fun more at the costumes than Japanese culture or whatever.

Something cute
A baby and puppies. Enough said.

A recipe
This has been bookmarked as "important" on my computer. It's Nutella-stuffed brown butter and sea salt chocolate chip cookies. Like, all the delicious things in one spot.

A good song
This one is great for mid-fall. It's "Drift" by one of my favorite bands, Daughter. It hasn't got any lyrics but it's really beautiful.

A good video
If you're getting sick of seeing life hacks everywhere (anyone who spends time on the Internet should fall into this category), and if you love John Green (anyone who spends time on the Internet should fall into this category), then you'll probably like this Mentalfloss video called "30 Life Hacks Debunked."

Fangirl stuff
ALLEGIANT IS COMING OUT ON TUESDAY I CAN'T EVEN HANDLE MYSELF EEEEE OMG TOO MUCH. I haven't got anything about that but just a lot of excitement.
I guess I can recommend one of my favorite controversial Harry Potter essayists on MuggleNet. He has some interesting work.

Something informational/educational
Well, if there's one thing I DON'T do on the Internet it's learn anything. Gah. So, sorry about that; I'll try and find something educational to put here next time I do this.

Anyway. Now I've successfully wasted 40 minutes on this. I say "wasted" because I suspect no one will read this, but if you do, I love you forever and thank you so much. I don't think any time was wasted on you. :)
Still need to do that homework/essay/poetry/at this point I'll just make a study plan to do tomorrow. So much for getting an A on that Euro test.
I'll write more sometime before next Sunday,

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

What is This Blog?

My name is Ariel Kalati. At the moment of writing this post, I am seventeen years old. I am in my senior year of high school. And I am taking forever to finish my first non-terrible novel.
I decided to start this blog because I heard that it's good to have a blog in the publishing world. I'm not really that close to the publishing world as of now. The aforementioned novel is close to its ending. Then, editing. And then the very first steps into the publishing world. But I figure, it can't hurt to have a blog already set up so that I can start attracting a following.
Anyway, I suppose I've only got a short strand of your attention left before you leave, so let me do something that's not boring. Um... I read a great lecture today by Neil Gaiman about the importance of libraries. No, that'll make you leave to go read that. Forget I said that!
This is not endearing me to you at all, is it?
All right. Why should you read this blog?
Good question. Really, a good question, because I don't think I'm very interesting. (What am I doing?) Also, I tend to see blogs as a space where I can say anything (as you can probably tell) because I'm used to no one reading them. It's like a journal sans deep dark secrets and real names.
Here, let me try a list format:

1. My own poetry. Which, I know, sounds like the worst thing imaginable- a seventeen-year-old girl's poetry. But it's not bad. Here's a sample. I recommend The Lonely Poet, Statistics Poem 23, Bluebird, Summer Moon, and any other title that catches your eye that is NOT one of the earlier ones.
2. Updates about aforementioned novel. At the moment, the first 22 chapters are here. It's not bad, but I don't recommend it. It's a fantasy novel about aliens, kind of, and the seasons, and how poetry and music reflect humanity.
3. My thoughts on writing and reading. I'll try and include links and pictures and funny stuff to make it more interesting.
4. Book reviews. But they'll most likely be about stuff you've heard about anyway. So even better; it'll be a little fangirling session. Yay!
5. Writing excerpts, again from me. I'm not a terrible writer, though; really, I'm not.
6. Rambles about my life? College apps, senior year, my social life... oh wait, haha.
7. Gosh, I don't know. Maybe I'll do, like, a link-fest. If there's one thing I am well-equipped to do, it is to show you what's on the Internet today.
8. OOH contests and stuff. And surveys and quizzes. And recipes and jokes! What do people like? I'm so bad at making people like me, gah! JUST LOVE ME INTERNET!

Anyway. So that was a train wreck of a post, but I kind of figure no one's going to read this until waaaay in the hypothetical future when this blog becomes, like, a "big thing" and then when people do read this it'll just be kind of a funny memory. Like, "look at the humble beginnings of this great majestic blog." I'm not even trying with the punctuation here.
All right. And let's set up a schedule: I will update twice a week. Sunday for sure, and then any other day when I don't have a... (Gosh it is going to be difficult not using even mild curses or "blasphemy" or whatever; I need to make sure I'm kid-friendly and stuff)... jolly crazy heap of homework. So basically, Sunday posts, and SURPRISE posts! What fun.
I swear, among my writer friends' blogs, this is like the Leira Frank of the blogs. A joke that will make sense to no one. Until I explain it, right now. Leira Frank was my... bad novel that I wrote when I was twelve, while all my writer friends were spewing out genius every time they smashed the keyboard by accident. Yeah. This is that compared to their blogs today.
Anyway, imaginary readers. I hope you're all off marking your schedules for my next blog post, excitedly chattering about how charmingly clumsy I am or whatever.
I'll write more on Sunday.
Ooh, ooh! Aren't blogs supposed to end with a question? Right...

HEY READERS! What are your thoughts on incredibly boring I MEAN FASCINATING blog topics? Post in the comments below!

I didn't even try with this, haha.