Uta Hagen--

"We must overcome the notion that we must be regular...it robs you of the chance to be extraordinary and leads you to the mediocre."

Monday, June 27, 2011

Looking for Alaska by John Green

It's been a while since I reviewed a book and so I thought I would review Looking for Alaska by John Green.  This book was absolutely amazing - probably one of my favorite books.  Here's the "review" I did of it for class.


The novel, “Looking for Alaska by John Green, really struck a personal chord in me. It wasn’t until about half way through the book, but it definitely hit me hard because the way that the main character, Pudge, reacted and some of his thoughts really mirrored my own.

One night Pudge is in his friend, Alaska’s, room watching her and his other friend, known as The Colonel, drink. They all fall asleep in Alaska’s room, until the phone ringing wakes Alaska up. Pudge and the Colonel don’t really wake up until Alaska comes back into the room sobbing, saying how she always messes things up. She asks her friends to help get her off campus, that she has to get away. They agree to set off fireworks so the dean will be distracted. And, even though they know that she’s been drinking, because they don’t want to deal with her drama, they let her drive. They let her go.

The next morning, the whole school is called into the gym for a meeting. Pudge is looking everywhere, telling the dean that they can’t start without Alaska. Where’s Alaska? Alaska has to be here somewhere. They can’t start without Alaska. But Pudge can’t find her anywhere. Alaska is not there. The dean then announces that Alaska has been in a terrible car crash, one that claimed her life. Alaska Young died.

Pudge’s reaction was the first thing I could connect to. At first he was just in body-paralyzing shock, much like I was when I was first told that my cousin, Jimmy, had been killed in Afghanistan. Pudge couldn’t make things real, he couldn’t cry right then, and I couldn’t either. Then he just wanted to throw up, but just dry-heaved, which I did several times in the aftermath of the news. Pudge then reasoned that this wasn’t real, that Alaska had to still be alive, she couldn’t be dead, much like I was convinced that the news of Jim being killed in action was all a dream. Because Jim has to come home – he always comes home. Just like Alaska always lives, she’s free, she’s wild, but she always lives. She couldn’t be dead.

Some of Pudge’s thoughts mirrored my own. His loss of Alaska was very much like when I lost Jimmy. He thought about things a lot like I did. He asked the same questions of “Why them?” or “Why couldn’t it have been me?” Pudge also wanted to believe that he was the most affected by Alaska’s death, when he knew he wasn’t. I didn’t really think this, but sometimes it feels like I’m the only one still struggling to deal with it.

When Pudge realizes that he is alive, even without Alaska, it hit home really hard. It took me a long time to realize that I’m still alive, and even though it sucks without Jim, it’s still better than being dead. I may never be the same person I was, but I’m still breathing, living, crying, feeling, and loving. And I think that was John Green’s point – life sucks sometimes, but it beats not living at all. And even when we experience death, the pain is still better than leaving this life behind.

This book was seriously amazing.  I was afraid that I wouldn't like John Green's books when I started reading LfA.  I already had grown to love John Green by his videos on YouTube and I knew that he was a funny guy.  But my fears were unjustified - this book definitely has a special place in my heart and I cannot wait to read more John Green books.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Update #3

Pages: 39
Chapters: 4
Words: 11,807

Hopefully I will be starting Chapter Five soon and that's the chapter where I get to really dig into the paranormal!  So excited and I'm actually feeling okay with writing right now.  I'm also currently reading Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert at the moment, so I'm thinking that has something to do with my mood.

Anyway, I want to thank you guys for sticking with me!

Happy first day of Summer - even if it is pretty stormy here.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Writing has made me face a lot of my demons - even before I started writing CATCH ME.  When I began writing in January of 2008, I had no idea of the struggles that I would face, whether they be internal or external.  Over the few years I've been writing I've faced a lot of negativity from various people - relatives, friends, the like - and I've also faced self doubt within myself.  And I can't say that all of that doubt has come from other people's comments, because I know there's a part of me that wonders why I couldn't have just been a normal teenager, who obsesses over boys and clothes and other trivial things.  I've never been a "normal" girl.  For pretty much my whole life, my maturity level has been much higher than most my age.  Because of this, it really bothers me when people put other people down just to make themselves feel better.  It's something that I've just never understood the point of.  Why would you do that?  It just seems pointless to me.  Whatever happened to the Golden Rule (treat others how you wish to be treated) or "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all"?  I know that it's hard to hold your tongue sometimes when someone is really getting under your skin, and I'll admit that I'm not always the best at this.  If someone is continuously getting to me, I eventually will snap at them, especially if they, even inadvertently, insult my family or are saying something that is COMPLETELY untrue.

I know that I'm kind of rambling and ranting, but here's the fact of the matter (and I'm pretty sure I've blogged about this before - in fact, I'm positive I have): People are who they are.  YOU can't change THEM.  If you don't like who someone is or what they stand for, then you can choose to walk away from them.  It is not right to ask them to walk away from themselves for you.  Even if you cannot accept part of them, you should not ask them to change that part of them.  Either learn to accept who they are, the parts you don't like and all, or walk away from them.  If you cannot accept them, it's unfair to them to have you be in their life because you will, even unintentionally bring them down and make them change something that they don't necessarily want to change.

Here's an example, I write.  I want to write.  I want to write what I want to write - what I need to write.  You cannot control what I write about, you cannot make me want to not write about this.  You cannot make me not want to write period.  I am who I am, I do what I do.  I don't fit a mold because I am me.  If I'm not who you want me to be, get over it.  Accept me or leave me.  If you accept me, good - I'm glad to have you.  Just truly accept me and don't just tell me you do.  If you choose to walk out of my life, it's for the better.  If you're going to do nothing but tell me I can't do something, tell me that I shouldn't do the things I do, or tell me that you don't want me to reach my dreams or whatever the case may be, I don't want you in my life.

I'm sorry that I keep ranting on this subject, it's just something that I'm dealing with a lot lately.  I thought summer vacation would offer me a break from this, and in some ways it has, but it hasn't completely.  There are always going to be people telling me I shouldn't do this, I shouldn't go through this again, that I should let go now.  But here's the thing:  I can't do that yet.  I have some unpaid debts to pay, some loose ends to tie up, and some broken promises to amend as well as some promises to keep.  And until all of that is done, I will not stop this. 

Accept me or leave me; Your choice.

This is aimed at no one in particular, just in general.  I just get really angered by this really easily.  I'm going to try to stop blogging about this subject, it's just something that I'm tired of dealing with.  I'm sorry.