Nicole's Engl blog

Archive for November 2012






a)  how has your writing developed since beginning the OFFA pieces?

I have found that im not too sure if my OFFA pieces have improved, because I found the quality my response was often based on the prompt its self, and if it sparked interest in me. Rather than how long and how much I had been writing. But I have found that my writing that I look to polish and improve has grown and improved, I think this has been mostly due to the seminar sessions where we work shopped pieces  people including myself have written, seeing what works and what didn’t work ahs helped me develop my writing.

b)  how would you characterize your personal writing style?

I am not sure that I have a particular writing style that I can describe, YET. But I did pretty much zero writing before this class but I hope to do some beyond this course, and I am sure one day I will be able to fit my writing style into a particular category.

c)  would your six word memoir be different today?

My six word memoir at the beginning of the year was “I am just not there yet” and I feel it works even more now than I did then. I can even put that in terms of  my writing as I did in the question above, I feel my writing is not fully developed, and I can still do lots to improve my practice. Therefore I am just not there yet still applies as I feel like it will in most points in my life. Maybe if I had more than ten minutes I could generate a six word memoir more specific to my writing and experience in this class.

d)     what have you learned about yourself and your writing through the process?

I think the most important thing I learned about my self through this course was that I can write decently, that surprised me most. As well the amount of personal information I was able to share over the internet through the OFFA prompts this shocked me and caused me to reassess some of my values regarding sharing on the internet. All in all I think this has been a great experience for everyone involved.


I’m not sure there is a path I didn’t take that I regret. I know there have been lots of times where I have a decision to make and after I make my decision there’s that sense of regret, or uncertainty that it was the wrong choice. But from where I sit in life not I don’t regret any of them, or wish I picked the other path. I am content with who I am and where I am right now therefore there is no need to regret anything.

So instead I will tell you about what stands out in my mind as a moment where there  were two paths, and probably for the longest time after I still questioned my decision and sometimes regretted it.

When I was in grade 6 my catholic elementary school was being shut down, so for grade 7 everyone was being relocated. According to where you lived determined where you went. But the students a year older than us were going to be bussed no matter where they chose to go. The rest of us could choose but after that year we had to find our own transportation to and from school. Of course out of my  close knit group of friends I was the only one not being district off to the same school as them. I was faced with a few choices. I could go to that school for one year, hope maybe something could be worked for my last year in terms of transportation. I could also pick to just go to the school I was being sent to according to where I  lived, but very few people I knew were going there, and I didn’t know anyone there already. Also if I went to this school I would most likely have to go to a high school on the other end of town instead of the potential to meet back up with all my friends at the same high school in grade 9. But there was also one more option, one that the school wasn’t really presenting as a option. I could go to the public school that was next to my current school.

If I choose either of the last two options I would still not be with my friends. But a lot of other people from my school were going to go to the public school. Most of them guys but still I would know them. The other issue was since these two schools were so close we naturally became enemies in terms of snow ball fights and other childish things. This caused a lot of nervousness in my decision. Eventually I chose, I picked the public school, it made the most sense. I wouldn’t at any point be bussed, it was in the exact same location as my old school, so I could still walk home. And it was where the majority of my classmates were going.

So that’s what I did, I choose the option that was frowned upon by my old school, and by most of my friends parents. But I didn’t care, and im more than happy now that that was the decision I made. As with all changes it was hard at first but I adjusted and soon I came to appreiciate this school more than I did my old school.



Posted on: November 11, 2012

I’m not so sure I believe in luck, actually scratch that I do. I just don’t reley on it. When ever my family is pooling money to buy lottery tickets I don’t join in. I never buy them on my own, I don’t gamble slot machines are stupid to me and I can’t play cards well enough to win money. So I don’t waste my time on it. There are people who are so drawn in by this idea of striking it big! And they are just counting on there luck, and most times it doesn’t pull through, hence the numerous billboards portraying the dangers of gambling addiction. I think its more of a reliance on luck that just hasn’t panned out.

This seems like a good outlook I have. When I get lucky its 100 times more satisfying its something you weren’t expecting. For example I put my name in a draw at a demonstration in the mall one day, I only did it because they give you free stuff if you do. Any way a few weeks later I got a call, you won a $50 gift card. I was so excited I’d never really won anything before. It wasn’t a huge deal but still so exciting, it was something I didn’t have before and I really didn’t do anything to get. So I was feeling pretty lucky, any way weeks and weeks went by and I hadn’t received the gift card. So I felt my excitement fade. Then one day when I forgot about it I got it in the mail just an envelope with my name on it. The gift card was inside nothing else. So I used the gift card and was very happy with my purchases. Then about a month later I received an email apologizing for the delay and my prize was mailed that day. I assumed this was just an email that was late or had been forgotten about. But a few days later in my mail box I found an identical envelope and inside again a $50 gift card nothing more. While I know this was probably due to error on the company’s side, I didn’t look at it like that at all. But rather I was very lucky to the be recipient of this mistake. When I told people they said wow lady luck is on your side you need to buy a lottery ticket. But I didn’t because to me that is just a very small probability I’ll win and nothing more. And while the odds are against your favour you can’t get lucky unless you buy a ticket. But I look at it like that two dollars I didn’t waste on a ticket that most likely didn’t win. I don’t factor luck into it because it isn’t something you can count on. Therefore I don’t!



Posted on: November 11, 2012

I truly and deeply believe that when something I over you just know it deep down in side, in that pit of your stomach, that ached with anxiety as it came to an end. No matter how much you want it to be over before like that bad for you boyfriend it’s really not over until you can feel it in your stomach. You can think about it and feel no pull, you just know. It’s over. Well this is my case with relationships, there not over till your truly accept with your mind and your heart that they are over. It doesn’t matter how bad you want it to be over, its not over till your heart let go to.

But there’s other things that can be over, those usually have signs like the highway or road your on, or movies and TV shows they have credits. But sometimes there’s something that just side swipes you and it’s over, like you got fired or you failed out of school. These things are different and for some reason they are over. You know there are over but you didn’t expect it, so your not ready for it to be over, but it is and there is nothing you can do. This leaves the worst feeling in the pit of your stomach. A feeling of longing and desire.

When your favourite book ends, or your favourite TV show, you have to accept that its over. But in the back of your mind you’re always hoping for your show to get picked up for just one more season, or despite what the author said there will be another book. These things are over but there is that chance they might not be, there’s a small glimmer of hope that they will come back to you again.

No matter it is, you can almost always tell when it is over, weather you want it to be or not it is, and in most opportunities there isn’t much you can do about it. It is just a part of life. But you will move on and get over whatever is over and on to the next until that too is over. Or hell maybe it will last forever, because if we didn’t think like this life would just be a series of endings, and that is the glass half empty way to look at it.



Posted on: November 8, 2012

What did I start over and over again? When I first saw the word repeat I thought of putting a song on repeat. Because more than anything that is what I start over and over again the most. Sometimes more than most for me you find a song that just resonates somewhere deep inside for you.

Most of the times it’s the deep and meaningful lyrics, and the way the song writer has strung together the most perfect combination of words, like they had looked deep into your soul and pulled it out just for you to put into words what you couldn’t.

Some times its those songs that maybe they have dumb lyrics or they don’t relate to you, or maybe the lyrics don’t even make sense but the beat is catchy and it just makes you want to dance every time you hear it, like you’re a five year old again.

For me this happens often, I actually have to spend time trying to not over play songs so I don’t get completely sick of them. A lot of times I become obsessed with songs before they hit the radio, so months later when they are finally making there appearance on radio charts I’ve already heard it over 100 times.

I’m also one of those people who still buys albums, no I don’t download it off iTunes. I go to the store and pick it up of the shelf so I have a physical copy of it in my hand. Then when I get home I play the whole thing beginning to end a number of times. It was made as a whole why not listen to it as a whole. But then I’ll become obsessed with a song that isn’t the title track and isn’t all you hear every time you turn on the radio or tv. But 4 months later when they decided to make a music video and this becomes the new single again I’ve already burned it out. This is why I don’t often listen to the radio.

One CD one artist in particular I link hand in hand with my obsession with repeating songs. Ed Sheeran I first heard one of his songs around April of this year. He’s from the U.K so I don’t even think his cd was out  there yet, but I had to wait till July for it to come to Canada. So I was on YouTube everyday playing his music from videos people had made. I became obsessed, when I finally got the cd in my hands  I played it over and over at least 30 times, I slowly stopped this. A month or so went by I put it back on and here we went again constantly on repeat. Even now as I write this the cd in its case sits on the side of my desk I’ve never stored it away because I will just bring it back out there is no point.

I love every song on this CD each and every one, some more than others but there isn’t a single on I skip. He just accompanied Taylor swift on a track I loved it, it was pure genius. He’s started to sky rocket to fame and I find my self feeling proud each time he reaches a new milestone, because his music and his lyrics are just so detailed I feel like we know each other, how else could he so perfectly describe how I feel or why else would he tell me the intimate details of his life.


What has been your reaction to the three texts you’ve read (Maus, My Dark Places and Prozac Diary)?

By starting with Maus I found my self questioning what a memoir really was, I was picturing more of a autobiography of shorts, but with Maus and its style as a graphic novel I was shocked at the amount of content that was displayed both through the text and the visuals.

My dark places I was shocked at the content that was included about James Ellroy’s personal life, details I didn’t know if I saw the necessity in the text, or maybe just not the level of detail included. I was also shocked at the way he talked of his mother especially the fact that she was dead. It allowed me to see into someone else’s way of viewing the world.

Prozac Diary was a very interesting read it opened my mind to the world of mental illness and the fascinating world of new pharmaceuticals. Like the Ellroy book this book allowed me to see into someone else’s head and understand slightly there thinking process and the way they viewed the world.

Which author do you prefer in terms of style?

I preferred Maus the most because the style was so unique, I had never read a graphic novel before, and the pictures as well as the text said equal amounts of stuff. Also I enjoyed that it was a story within a story of Art trying to rehash the story from his father and there were more interesting information in this back and forth exchange that added to the content of the piece.


Which text has the best content?

I found both Maus and Prozac Diary to have the best content. Maus because I am very interested in personal accounts of times of war being a history student, but I had head similar accounts before. Prozac diaries was incredibly interesting to me as well since I had never known what Prozac had done or any of the back ground for it, as well this created a picture of what it is like to experience first hand a mental illness and the treatment behind it. I also feel that Prozac diaries would lend a lot to the content about mental illness and the awareness of it.

Which text, if any, do you find most relatable? Why?

I find Prozac Diaries the most relatable, because of the way she maps out her thinking, you can follow it and understand where she’s going and how she’s gotten there. As well through this you can find something relatable even though the circumstances are not ones you have experienced