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Can I Call Myself An Author Now?

For the second time in the past couple years now, I can say I have had a poem of mine published once again! My first poem published was in an anthology called We Will Not Be Silenced which shares countless stories through poetry, prose and art of survivors of sexual harassment and assault.

Me holding my copy of We Will Not Be Silenced, which contains what will be the first of many poems I’ll have published in the future.

What made me decide to contribute to this anthology about sexual harassment and assault is my own personal experiences. The long story short end of the matter was as I was growing up having to deal with being bullied in school by boys in my elementary and middle school years. The bullying I experienced in elementary school from boys my own age was physical, such as tugging at my hair during class to one of the boys sitting behind me on the school bus and punching the back of my seat.

Once I entered middle school, the bullying became more harassment in nature. In my 6th grade English class, I found myself hiding my face during class because one of the boys was always puckering his lips and making kissing noises at me. I tried getting him to stop to no avail. I also had to deal with another boy that same year telling me that he wanted to kiss me and telling me that he knew I wanted to kiss him too even though I never expressed any interest in him. At that point of my life, I’d never kissed anyone so I was worried that he might try to force a kiss on me one day.

These experiences and many others I experienced growing up inspired me to write my poem because the phrase I use to title my poem is a phrase many of us heard growing up when dealing with harassment from boys. But in my opinion, I see the phrase as a crutch to excuse boys from their wrongful behavior, which just continues to perpetuate and allow them to act that way as they grow up.

My most recent poetry publication is in an anthology called Through the Looking Glass: Reflection on Madness and Chaos Within. This anthology’s main focus is on mental illness and the experiences each of us have with dealing with our battle against our mental illness. Since mental illness is such a taboo subject, this anthology is an important step in the right direction to beginning the process of people actually talking about their mental health problems instead of feeling like their having to cope with them alone.

My big struggle that I talk about in Through the Looking Glass is with depression. I make a comparison between depression being an everyday fight against a demon that I have to slay and conquer every day because that’s how my experience with depression has been since I discovered I was depressed. I discovered I had depression when I was in college when I started having dreams and waking up with tears streaming down my face during the night and not understanding why. But it was not until years later in 2019 when my best friend lost her fight against cystic fibrosis that I discovered my depression getting worse. The depression I experienced during my college years was nothing like the demon I found myself fighting against once I lost my dear friend, one of the few people who I felt like knew me and understood me as a person. But I’ve been conjuring it one day at a time and I feel like I’m doing so much better now than I’ve been for a while.

 I also have another poem of mine that’s going to be published in another anthology that’ll be coming out in the near future that I’m excited about.

But one of the many reasons I wrote this post is now that I have some of my writing being published, should I consider myself an author? I mean most of the writing of mine that is getting published is poetry and each anthology is only going to have one of my poems, each one different from the other. But I do not know if I should consider myself an author because of these poems being put out there because I do not know if I feel like I deserve that title.

At the same time though, I love the written word so much and being published in any capacity has always been a dream of mine. I know technically I have been published since college along with since I started this blog back in 2015 after I graduated from college. But there is something different about seeing your name in a physical book you can hold in your hands. And to me (along with this blog of course), that feels like a huge accomplishment. Nonetheless, I still struggle with assigning myself the title of author because I still cannot believe I have accomplished this much in what feels like such a short amount of time. And I really cannot wait to see where my writing will go from here, what other publications I will find myself contributing to in the near future.

Writing My Truth

I know it’s been a solid while since I’ve written here on my blog. The hiatus I unexpectedly took wasn’t at all planned, just was something that happened. I don’t know why—well, I have a couple theories at least as to why I just vanished off the blogosphere for most of 2020. I know this year has been rough for almost everyone with what all’s been going on, from COVID 19 ravaging the world to here in the US having our elections and all the craziness that’s going on with Trump not accepting his loss. 

For me, it’s been a whole lot rougher than I expected. I think the biggest reason being that it’s my first year without having my best friend to talk to. And to tell the truth, I’ve been struggling with dealing with that loss. I think it impacted me a lot more than I expected to where I just couldn’t write for a while. Losing her literally put me at a loss of words, the grief was that powerful for me.

I also think what doesn’t help is that I struggle with depression and anxiety. I get into a deep sadness where all I want to do is sleep and not wake up and cry with no provocation. I’ve been struggling with it for a while, I want to say since we left my Mom’s abusive marriage. I’ve just never put it into words or admitted it because I didn’t realize it was something I had for the longest time. It wasn’t until I was in college and I’d have moments where I’d cry in my sleep that I realized something was up. But even then, I didn’t realize it was depression because it was like I just couldn’t accept it that something was the matter with me. It wasn’t really until this year that I accepted I had depression and that I needed to tell my doctor and family about it. And even now, I’m still dealing with it in different ways. I’m taking medication prescribed by my doctor for it, which I know only does so much.

I know there’s still more I need to do about it, but I am working on it. One step at a time, one day at a time because that’s what I can do. Focus on what’s going on in front of me and keep moving forward. But I am okay, doing a lot better than I have been. This blog post is proof of that because I hadn’t been writing as much lately until these past couple days. Been playing video games and focusing on work more than anything.

Been moving forward in life too, because I moved into an apartment with the love of my life at the end of July. It’s small and cozy, but perfect as a temporary home for us until we’re able to save up for a bigger place. I also received a raise in October from my job. Not by much mind you (2% increase is what I was told, which is the highest they give to employees apparently), but still better than nothing. Work has also been busy in general too, leaving me most days feeling physically exhausted by the time I make it home. But I don’t mind because my job has never been slow or uneventful for me. Just tires me out more than I’m used to, especially having to wake up to be ready and at my desk by 7am. I’ve been working for this company since May last year and I’m still not used to when I get up to begin my day.

But yes, I’m doing a hell of a lot better now. I haven’t been reading and writing as much lately, which I’m hoping to change now because I’m ready to be out of this rut I’ve been in. However, I’ve also been enjoying the video games I’ve been playing on my PlayStation 4 as well. In this time of solitary isolation with my love, I find them to be a good way to relax and destress from a busy day. Maybe I’ll write about some of them here so I can tell you why I’ve been enjoying them so much, why they’ve been such a wonderful distraction for me in my life when I’ve needed it.

I want you all to know though, that I’m extremely thankful for each one of you who’s still here even though I’ve been gone for so long. I’ve been meaning to come back way sooner, but I really feel like life got so crazy and draining for me this year that I needed to be away and didn’t even know it. So I apologize for being gone for so long and I’ll try my best for it not to become a habit.

I also want you all to know I’m okay. Seriously, I’m doing good. I wouldn’t say that with such conviction if I truly didn’t mean it. Do I have bad days where I don’t want to do anything at all, but lay in bed? Yes, that’s part of the sadness I have to deal with. However, I’m not going to let it control me or rule my life. I’ll deal with the moments when they come, but I’ll conquer them each and every time. Because I believe in myself, know that everything is going to be okay and that I’ll get through it. I also know what I need to do for myself to get through them because I’ve dealt with them enough already to know how to handle it.

I just wanted to let you all know that. Just wanted to write my truth on here about what’s been going on with me and let you all know I’m fine. And I’m going to try from here on out not let this be a habit. I’ll make sure that if there’s a next time I take a long time away from blogging to let it be known here so that if any of you were worrying about me, you’ll know I’m okay.

I hope you all are doing well during this time. I know 2020 has been a really rough year, so I want to know if you are okay. And if you aren’t, that’s also fine too. Just know I’m here and that if you ever need to reach out to someone, I’ll gladly listen to whatever you have to say.  

2020: The Year of Me

2020 Happy New Year Pinterest
Image from Pinterest.

2019 has been a rough year for me. I lost one of the most important people in my life, someone I never imagined I’d have to face life without. My best friend who while I know is no longer in pain, I still miss as if she passed away just yesterday. Dealing with the grief I feel over her loss has been one of the hardest things I’ve gone through, especially knowing as I experience 2020, she won’t be here this year. While I’m currently doing fine right now, I won’t say her loss hasn’t changed me in some way like losing someone you care about tends to do.

Erin and I At the Beach
One of my favorite pictures of my best friend and I at the beach for her birthday.

It’s made this year difficult. As I experience certain moments in life, I’m constantly reminded that I can no longer talk to her about what’s going on and it sucks. It reminds me of how short life is for all of us and how much I wish she were here experiencing life with me.

2019 hasn’t been all bad though. I’ve had some good moments during this past year too, like starting my new job at China Jushi USA in May and being one of the bridesmaids during my sister’s wedding in November. I’ve also made some new friends through a video game I’ve recently been playing on my PlayStation 4 I bought for myself in 2019, Final Fantasy XIV that I talk to on almost a daily basis along with reconnecting with some old friends too who’ve also had the same loss I’ve been experiencing.

Laney and I At Her Wedding 2019
My sister and I at her wedding reception.

So, while 2019 has been a rough year, I’ve also seen some good come out of this past year for me too. Yes, 2019 wasn’t the year I was hoping it would be, but I know it helped shape me into the woman I am today. So, for that, I’m grateful, even though it means beginning a new year without one of the most important people in my life.

What I want 2020 to be for me is a year of taking care of myself. I spend so much of my time and energy worrying about other people that I don’t stop and think about what I want out of life. So, I hope for 2020 to spend some time doing things for myself that make me happy, like continuing writing here on my blog and continuing pursuing other passions I love.

I also want 2020 to be a year of learning and growth for me. With that in mind, since I work for a Chinese company, I want to learn Chinese. I’ve already started the process a little by downloading Duolingo on my phone and using it a little each day. However, I also plan on looking into other avenues for learning Chinese so if anyone here has gone through the process of learning another language and knows a good tool I can use, don’t hesitate to let me know in the comments section of this post.

So, for 2020, I hope to continue growing into the woman I’m meant to be while pursuing passions I love and putting my genuine self out into the world.

But enough about me. What all do you hope to get out of 2020 and how has it been treating you so far? Leave a comment below because I’d love nothing more than to hear from you.

Turning the Page on Life To 26

birthday cupcake image

Hello everyone! I hope you’re all having a wonderful week so far. So, January 14th is my birthday and this year, I turned 26.

When I was younger, I used to make such a big deal about my birthday. I’d get all excited every time it came around to the point where I’d tell other people it was my birthday just so someone would wish me a wonderful day.

Well this year has been a little different for me. For once, I was more relaxed about it being my birthday and not making as much of a big deal about it. I don’t know if it’s because I’ve come to the realization that it’s not something I need to make such a fuss over. That if someone wants to wish me well, they will and if they don’t then on well.

Either way, this year I felt calm about it being my birthday and just took the moment to enjoy the day no matter what happened. I was at work all day and it was busy because of payroll being due for me to turn in so it came and went quickly.

While I’m another year older, I don’t feel that much different than any of the days before. I feel like just the same person that I’ve always been and that not too much has really changed. But at the same time, I feel happy with where I’m at in my life and that there have been some changes that I’m proud of.

For starters, I’ve acquired a new job that’ll put me in the right direction in life. Not to say working in food service isn’t a noble thing, it just isn’t where I picture myself working for the rest of my life. At first, I wasn’t sure what to think of this job because I originally wasn’t doing well at it my first couple weeks. But now, I feel like I’ve gained my ground and am starting to adjust to my job responsibilities and handling whatever tasks get thrown at me. If anything, I find I’m busier now than when I started out due to us hiring more employees and being given more responsibilities by my boss. I see this as a positive thing because I believe they wouldn’t give me more work if they weren’t happy with the way I’ve been handling things. While I don’t know where this work experience will get me in life, I’m extremely thankful for this opportunity and to get the experience.

I’m also thankful/happy because I have a poem published in an anthology. I know I’ve already talked about this quite a bit, so I probably won’t say too much else about it, but I’m still excited that a poem I’ve written is physically in a book that people can buy and read. One of my dreams is to one day be an author who writes her own stories and gets published. And I feel like with the anthology, I’ve accomplished my dream of being an author even if it’s just having one poem I’ve written getting published. While I hope that’s not the only piece of writing of mine that’ll be read, I still want to continue pursuing that dream and having more of my voice going out into the world. I know my blog here on WordPress also helps me accomplish some of my writing goals so I’m extremely thankful for that too.

All of this I accomplished when I was 25. So, I can’t wait to see what 26 has in store for me. Hopefully it’s as wonderful as being 25. I’m hopeful that it could be another great age but will wait and see what life has in store for me.

 

What I Hope 2019 Brings For Me

2019 Happy New Year

“Take a leap of faith and begin this wonderous new year by believing. Believe in yourself. And believe that there is a loving source—a sower of dreams—just waiting to be asked to help you make your dreams come true.” -Sarah Ban Breathnach

Hello everyone! I hope you all are doing alright and that the start of 2019 has treated you well. Personally, I’m excited about this year right now because I recently just bought myself a new laptop that was giving me issues, which I’ve since resolved. So this’ll be the very first blog post I’ve written on here since I bought it, which makes me really happy.

For me, 2018 started off with loss then became a better year closer to the end with new opportunities I never expected to be within reach. The summer was the most difficult part of 2018 because my partner lost someone very close to him who I was just starting to really get to know. So as the year went on, we dealt with that loss together, which resulted in further strengthening our now two-year relationship. While I know losing someone you care about is never easy, I believe we’ll both get through this together and come out stronger as a couple.

2018 did have some good moments for me too though. There was definitely a lot of change as my grandmother in Pennsylvania sold her home and moved to a retirement community in Florida. But I also experienced change myself with a new job opportunity I never expected. While I’m still getting acquainted at my new job with how everything works, I truly believe this opportunity will benefit me in the long run with more job experience and lead me closer to my dreams.

While I haven’t been reading and writing (on my blog and outside of my blog) as much as I’d have liked in 2018, I had an opportunity with my writing I didn’t expect which still has me awestruck. One of my poems is published in an anthology, which you can order off of Amazon and on Kindle. In 2018, I officially became an author and I can’t be any more pleased by it because it’s something I definitely didn’t expect to happen for me. Having my writing published to where other people can read something I’ve written is a huge dream of mine. So by having my poem published, I feel like I’ve accomplished one of my dreams, though I hope it’s only the beginning of what’s to come with my writing.

So while I didn’t accomplish everything I’d hoped to accomplish in 2018, I definitely feel proud of what I achieved last year and am thankful for the opportunities I’ve been given.

For 2019, I hope this new year will be more fulfilling than the last. That I’ll be able to continue moving forward towards completing my goals. I hope to continue reading more enjoyable books that I can talk about here on my blog and continue expressing myself with the power of the written word. I don’t necessarily have any set goals for my blog here on WordPress other than to continue writing blog posts that others will enjoy and gaining followers in the process. My main hope with my blog is to continue getting to know other bloggers and to continue being active in the blogging community.

I truly hope 2019 will be a good year and hope you all are having a good 2019 so far. So what do you want from 2019? Please leave a comment expressing what you want from this new year.

 

2018: My Year of Change

New Year 2018 Image

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” – George Bernard Shaw

I know I’m being ahead of myself here whenever I wish you all a Happy New Year. I know it isn’t 2018 yet when I’m going to post this because I’m writing this ahead of time, due to already having reflections of 2017. But I wanted to get a head start on this because I was really itching to write and reflect about this year we’ve had.

2017 really has been quite the year. It’s been a year I know I’ll remember, maybe more than many of the others we’ve all left behind. I believe part of that is because so much has happened, yet almost everything feels exactly the same.

In 2017, I made quite a few changes I felt were needed in my life. I quit a job that did nothing but drain me emotionally and I fell in love with someone I never expected to, which allowed me to move on past my last relationship. I also continued writing here, even going so far as to making changes to my blog that I felt were necessary in order to make my blog into what I wanted it to be.

All of these different changes were things I needed to do to improve my life. However, I know there’s more changes I still have to make. That is where 2018 comes in. I hope with this new year to continue making changes in my life.

In 2018, I hope to continue improving with my writing by bringing in a variety of writing topics. Of course, I plan on continuing writing book reviews and talking about video games, but I want to continue writing about other things as well whenever I can. I also want to learn more, which means the possibility of making big decisions in my life in order to make that possible. I want to continue doing whatever is necessary to make writing a part of my life and eventually my career. And of course, I want to continue improving my blog in every way I can. I know I’ve already started down that path by changing my blog’s name to something more personal and changing the design. But I want to work on changing it some more if I can.

I want 2018 to be my year. I want it to be the year where I try new things and get completely out of my comfort zone. I want it to be the year where I continue reading new books and play video games I might never have tried before.

But I know in order for all of this to be possible, I have to step up and make these changes happen. Only time will tell for certain whether I’ll be able to do that.

Thank you everyone who reads my blog for being here with me in 2017. I hope you continue following me into the new year and that 2018 is what you want it to be. I know I’m definitely going to try the best I can to make it one of my best years yet.

Two Years Later and All I Want to Do Is Write: Reflecting on My Blogging Journey

Two Year Blogging Post Image

On July 28, 2015, I made a decision that changed my writing life in ways I never imagined. I created this blog, which I’ve found has grown for me as a wonderful space for me to write about the things I love.

Over this second year, I’ve learned just as much as I did my first. I learned more about my blogging space, realized that my blog’s name and appearance needed an update, and made the changes necessary to make my blog appeal to others. I came up with a name I personally connected to so that others could find ways to connect to me and would want to follow my blog.

I also realized how much I enjoy using this writing space to write, even at times when I don’t feel like writing. Lately, I haven’t been writing as many posts as I’d like. Part of that is due to having a busy life: adjusting to my new work hours, things going on around the house such as painting bedrooms and replacing carpet (speaking of which, I’ll definitely have a new #weekendcoffeeshare very soon where I talk about all of these things), basically life is keeping me hectic right now. So one of the things I hope to do within the next couple weeks is get more writing done here.

My overall experience this second year has been amazing. Like the year before, I see that my writing is improving with every post I publish. I also find myself wanting to write more, to just keep writing whenever I find myself itching for it. I also hope to do a variety of writing. I don’t want this blog to forever be a place for just book reviews and video game posts (though I haven’t been doing much video game playing lately so that’s something I’ll definitely have to work on). I want to branch out, use this blog as a place to experiment and try writing about different topics. Maybe even do more fiction writing and poetry, whenever the mood strikes me. As the years go by, I want to grow with my blog and my writing to continue improving with each word I write.

If I had to give advice to a new blogger, I’d tell them to just keep writing. I’d let them know there are going to be days when they don’t feel like writing and that’s okay. I’d tell them not to get discouraged, to keep trying because giving up is not an option. I would also tell them that if you love blogging enough, everything will work out as long as they keep patient and keep going with it. I’d also tell them that when they aren’t writing blog posts to read other bloggers. Because what other bloggers say might be a good source of inspiration for your next blog post, even if you don’t realize it or you can make connections with amazing people who enjoy the same things you do. Oh, and to comment on other blog posts too. Not only to let a blogger know you’ve enjoyed their work, but to start a conversation, to continue being involved in the blogging community. All of these things are lessons I’ve come to learn during my two years here at WordPress.

While I’ve yet to know what this next year of blogging has in store for me, I’m currently happy with the way my blog is right now. I have a good group of followers who are supportive with my posts, and I’m continuing to enjoy the writing process when it comes to blogging. I can’t wait to see what this third year has in store for me because I know it’ll be just as great as the others.

Bringing Hope Into the New Year

happy-new-year-2017-image

“I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re doing something. So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make new mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life. Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, do it. Make your mistakes, next year and forever.” -Neil Gaiman

Since the end of 2016 is here, I want to use this time to reflect on what this year has brought for me. While I know a lot of people say this year has been a terrible one, it really hasn’t been quite as awful to me. Yes, it hasn’t been a very great year either, but I’ve had a lot worse happen in my life in comparison to what I’ve had from this one year alone.

In this year, I feel proud of what I’ve managed to do. Now, I didn’t do a whole lot to really be proud of, but I’m proud of myself for my continuous effort to blog on here even at times where I didn’t think any writing would get done. I know I didn’t keep up my promise to write multiple blog posts in one week. I know that was something I genuinely wanted to do. But I understand now with my writing that I’d rather it not be rushed and that I’ll always be looking to improve myself like this with each new year to come. I’m proud that I kept up my blog during the year, despite all of the different things that happened during this time and that I haven’t lost any followers since I’ve been here on WordPress. My goal for this new year is to continue putting up work on my blog that people will continue to enjoy. And if there’s anything I can do at all to make sure that continues to happen, don’t hesitate to leave a comment in this post below with ideas or suggestions of things you’d like to see here. I’m always open for new ideas, new topics to be explored and want to do the best I can to make sure that happens.

Besides continuing to improve my blog, I hope in the new year to continue improving in my writing as well as continue working on improving myself. While I know most of the writing I do ends up here on Vook: Books + Video Games, I still want my writing to get better. I want my writing to improve each year in some small way or another, even if there’s nothing wrong with the way I write. I also want to write more too. I know there’s never any guarantee of that happening, but I always want to hope for the best whenever I can. I also want to work on improving myself too because there’s always room for self-reflection in life.

I know how critical I can be of myself. I know it’s mostly because of the troubles I’ve been dealt in life. I haven’t always had things as easy as I do now and know how fortunate I am to still be here. I think about my past, about what I’ve been through in such a short amount of time and am proud of how strong of a person I am. I know at times I blame myself for the things that have already happened, as if I had control of those situations and could stop them from happening. But I know now that there wasn’t anything I could do and that I’m the person I am today because of it. So with this new year, what I want from myself is to continue letting go. To stop criticizing myself every time I make a mistake. To stop saying “I’m sorry” to people when you haven’t really done anything wrong. To stop thinking of the troubles of the past and continue embracing what is to come in the future. To live like every moment will be your last breath. To stop letting the past break you down and leave you with scars that will never heal. To never forget, but remember that there is more to life than what you were once dealt. To stop letting your emotions get to you and realize that you are surrounded by people who love you. To continue giving chances even when you get hurt because you know you are strong enough to pick yourself back up again. I hope in this new year to come, I’ll be able to do these things and feel confident enough to share stories of my past without breaking down into tears.

While 2016 is ending, I’d like to bring hope into the new year. I know 2016 has been a rough year for a lot of people, either because they lost someone they loved or because of other personal traumas they might’ve experienced that they are still coping with. While I know this year didn’t turn out the way people wanted, know that you will be okay. Things might seem rough and difficult now, but know there are people that if you let them will be there for you when you need them. I say this, both to everyone following my blog or not. For those who are struggling, I am here. To listen, to learn, to understand—to be here when you need someone close by.

What I’m trying to say but realize now I’m not doing such a good job is that I hope things get better for you in 2017. Look at this new year as a fresh start. If you see certain things in your life aren’t working out and you know what you can do to change them, then do so. Make those changes, make things a little easier for yourself. And if you make mistakes along the way, that’s okay too. Embrace those mistakes and learn something from them so that you can continue on your way.

Happy 2017 everyone. I hope this year you are able to get accomplished everything you want and more. That all of your dreams come true and have a fabulous year.

 

A Year of Blogging: My Reflection on My Blogging Journey

One Year of Blogging Image

Hello everyone! I’m excited to announce that today marks a year since I started writing on my blog Vook: Books + Video Games. I started this blog because after graduating from college, I wanted to continue writing no matter what. But I didn’t know what exactly with writing I wanted to do. After much thinking and contemplating, I decided to start a blog so I could showcase my writing to the world. I also started this blog because while in college, I had taken a blogging course and found that while blogging on Healthy Body Peace of Mind I really enjoyed what I was doing. I found that while I enjoyed writing about heart health, it wasn’t exactly what I wanted to write about once I decided to get back into blogging again. I thought about my interests and passions and decided to create a completely new space where I could safely write about all of my passions with the freedom blogging provides. And that is how Vook: Books + Video Games was born.

Since I first started my blog, aiming at creating mostly posts talking about books and video games, I’ve found that my blog has grown far from that. While I try my best to focus on blogging about those two topics, I’ve found comfort in using this space to share some of my own works as well as talk about my personal life because I feel comfortable sharing my whole self with you.

Since blogging on WordPress, I’ve felt nothing but a warm welcome from the few people who I’ve managed to talk to. One of the many things with blogging I’ve been hoping to do is get involved with fellow bloggers and converse and I feel like in the one year I’ve been on here, I’ve been able to do that. While I know the WordPress blogging community is vast with a wealth of blogs, I’ve discovered during my time here a majority of people are friendly and I enjoy the short exchanges of interaction I’ve had from fellow bloggers who share the same love of blogging as I do. As I continue blogging here on WordPress, I hope that will continue in the time to come and hope to talk to more bloggers in the near future.

Even though I’ve only been on WordPress for a year, I feel like I’ve learned a lot from this short period of time. I know one of my biggest strengths in my writing is passion. I find that whenever I’m writing on a subject I’m extremely passionate about, my writing shines through in ways I never expected. This post is no exception because I’ve found in this year that I’ve really started to love blogging even more than when I first started on this journey. When I took the blogging class at Columbia College, I knew I enjoyed blogging and could feel that I was pretty good at it. But when I started this blog, I discovered many months into it how much I enjoyed what I was doing. I discovered I found myself looking forward to coming up with something to write about because it meant I had something else to share with my readers.

I found that I was not only writing for myself, but for others too. And that was exactly what I was hoping for because I don’t want to write posts on my blog only for my own benefit. I want those who read my blog to feel safe and welcomed. I want my readers to enjoy the content I’ve created and feel inspired to create stories of their own. Because every person has a story of their own to tell. But it’s up to them how they want to tell it and whether they feel comfortable sharing it. My blog is a part of me that I feel comfortable sharing with the world. It’s not all of me because I know I’m a complicated human being and still have more of my story left to tell. But it’s a part of me I keep close to my heart yet am willing to share with the world.  I want my readers to know how much I enjoy writing and know they can find a friend in me.

As I continue my blogging journey, I hope my readers can learn from me. I hope they can benefit from my work and that they enjoy reading it. Blogging has been a big learning process for me. I’ve found that there’s still a lot I have to learn, but I’m willing to continue blogging in order to improve my writing.

I’ve only been on my blog for a year, yet it feels like no time has passed at all. As a writer, I’ve discovered my writing has improved since being a part of this blogging community. I’ve discovered how much I really enjoy writing on WordPress and want to continue doing so in the many years to come. I definitely see blogging as a potential career path for me and want to use it as a way for me to continuously improve my writing as I progress. But I also want it to be a learning tool, as a way for me to always have something worth working on and goals to complete so my blog can live up to its full potential. I know there are some things with my blog I need to be working on and I hope to do that in the many months to come.

Right now, the main thing with my blog I plan on changing in the foreseeable future is the main design. I think the look of it right now is okay to start off with, but it’s not exactly the way I want my blog to look overall. I hope to make some changes soon so that it looks exactly the way I want it to. But for now, I’m going to play around with the overall look and see what I can do to make it even better.

I hope you all enjoy reading my blog. Thank you for taking time out of your busy lives to come on here and read my posts. You have no idea how much it means to me that people enjoy my writing and find inspiration from it. I still can’t believe it’s been a year already but I am proud of what I’ve accomplished so far and can’t wait to see where this blogging journey continues to take me.

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