Category Archives: Student Blogs

Walk, Skip?, and then Run

Last week, I was dealing with a shift in my idea which after speaking with Dr. Zamora, I realized was more a shift based on semantics rather than on my actual project. That being said, this shift has really helped me in better understanding the plot and how to connect my scenes which is huge for a non-linear writer like myself.

I have definitely achieved a lot this week in terms of better outfitting my story and in writing. I was able to build more of the story out which has helped me to better plot the scenes I will be tackling and has actually assisted me in writing linearly. I wrote Chapter 1 this week and went straight into Chapter 2 and didn’t stop to write an unrelated scene (that’s progress, baby!).

I will say I didn’t hit my goal of words with writing scenes, but did when adding what I was plotting. With all the progress I did make I did more than walk or stroll with my work, but wouldn’t say I ran so I guess I skipped? I do feel a lot lighter and excited and have been happy with sitting down and working. So maybe frolicking might be a better metaphor?

I have realized I enjoy writing by word count rather than time, but recognize that is not something I am able to do as often since I have more time constraints. I know how much I can achieve in a 30 min period (which is what I have been doing mostly), but do find it more helpful to sit down and crank out a word count rather than a time goal and have been using that on the weekends and the couple of days throughout the week I can do that.

My goal over the next two weeks is to crank out at least 20,000 words. After my presentation this week on Wednesday, my schedule will be a lot more free than it has been since this past Friday, and I look forward to spending more writing sessions where I can sit with a word count goal rather than two 15 minute sessions or one 30-min session.

Already Struggling

It’s only the 4th week of classes and I have not found a good flow yet. I got no writing done because the readings for research class are taking up too much time.

I’m really hoping that by the time class starts tomorrow evening I’ll have a scene or two to share, but right now, I’m doubtful of that. The next goal is trying to make time to sit and write and not worry about the research class.

I know I will get my thesis done by late April/first week of May like I planned. The only uncertainty is the time spent between now and then. I don’t want too many late nights but maybe they’ll all be late nights. I know Spring Break will be a lot of writing time for me. I don’t want to miss work, but a day dedicated to my thesis sounds amazing. I know it will get done. I just have to struggle a bit before I find my stride.

“Hurrah! Another Year, Surely This One Will Be Better Than the Last; The Inexorable March of Progress Will Lead Us All to Happiness”

My thesis writing is currently going … a tad bit awkwardly. The writing is there and the ideas are there, and I have contemplated and contemplated about what to put on paper (well, document). New Japan Professional Wrestling just created a new championship belt, the NJPW World Television Championship, where the whole point of the belt is to pressure title holders and challengers to give it their all within 15-minute time limit contests (the inaugural champ is the Vegan George Michael Dream Vision-Complexed Human Udon Noodle Submission Maestro himself, Zack Sabre Jr.). That’s kind of how I’ve been writing, in fast intense bursts like a challenger desperate to dethrone a champion within a more limited artistic frame, but also like a defensive champion trying not to take any big shots that may cost me my belt.

I have this whole chapter laid out and detailed in my head, I’ve been working on it during long hot shower marathons in my basement. It’s a chapter about my Uncle – one of the most important people in my life. I want to do his story justice, because I feel that *fuck* when he needed the people that he needed him most, they all turned a fucking bullshit blind eye. I was kept in the dark I think to keep my light lit, I was in a really dark place then. It’s not easy to write about. It really sucks to write about, I hate the idea that I’m going to write about it. Putting it onto paper makes it all seem so definitive. I’m still running. I thought I stopped but I still am. Shit sucks.

Fortunately though, I am in a good place overall. And the writing has been productive. I added a good chunk of subsections to one chapter I had drafted, and planned out two more. I’m going to type one in-full either tonight or tomorrow. Besides that focusing on my Literature Review has kept me busy additionally, and I’m still hunting down photos and sketching and interviewing people to add extra layers and components to my work. So all is good.

I just have some hard things to write about coming up.

Go-Time Y’all (Originally Published 2/6/22 @6:08pm … But Accidentally In a Different Blog 😬)

Okay, so you see the three generations of wrestlers there – where the guy on the left (Shota Umino) is the youngest, the guy in the middle (Keiji Mutoh) is the oldest, and the guy on the right (Hiroshi Tanahashi) is somewhere closer to the guy in the middle? I feel like the guy on the right. My time here is almost up, and it all feels impendingly SOON for me to wake up as the guy in the middle.

I think that the time I’d like to put into this project, for my own fulfillment, needs to be much longer, meaning after a summer break and one more semester on top of what I actually have left. I have no hesitation that I’ll get this project done in time, and done well. I will, but time-wise I feel like there is just more to spend to really feel like my time was FILLED here as an MA student.

I felt the same way high school. Everything socially and academically seemed at a better place the 2nd half of my senior year, and then it just ended. Maybe that’s because you realize that all that sucked you just allowed to suck, idk. Like how every paper that I stressed over could have been completed just as well had I not let myself stress so much – or didn’t take what that person or this person did/said so seriously.

Which I guess means that this is actually the end of my road here at KEAN – or as a COLLEGE student. Either way, this is more of a mindset blog than a what I got done blog because I want my next one to hold me accountable. I want to get a good chunk of writing done over the next week or two. So expect the next blog to come later in the week than this one does. That was a calculated decision.

This writing I’m not measuring in pages, but in sections. I want to have two well-drafted sections of my project done by the next blog post. This does not have to be my best work, but it needs to be good – by my self-loathing standards AT LEAST. So, you reading this, hold me accountable.

I also have to find some essential photos that will help me fill out my writing, and one that is astronomically essential to the work, as I see it. I’ve been looking for it for months – I won’t spoil it, but I’ll let y’all know when I find it.

There are other goals throughout this week related to the next class and whatnot, but I think I typed enough so I won’t clarify here. Someone just walked into my office to talk to me, so I’ll see y’all here next week.

First Update of the Semester

After last week, I was tasked with two assignments. 1. Map out every scene in two chapters (2 & 4) and 2. Share a snippet of writing. This sounds like two easy tasks for me to complete and with two weeks, that’s more than enough time. But it’s me and I sometimes do too much (but it helps in the long run.)

In doing too much this time, I have begun to make a scene list for the entire novel. A lot of the novel has scenes already and I just have to add a couple of details to my list. But most of the planned chapters just have titles. Thankfully, for me, the titles are more than enough to go off of.

Here is part of the scene list I have so far. I’m up to chapter 7

Since I have to map out chapters 2 & 4, they will be my focus for this week and I will try to get some writing done for them. I’m using three different platforms to help me write and organize this novel. I’m doing this for two reasons, 1. sometimes spending too much time on the same platform fries my brain and 2. it helps me come up with new ideas. Part of my creative process is seeing the same information in a different spot or next to something else may spark a new idea.

As a quick example, here’s chapters 1 and 2, same number of planned scenes but as I wrote them out, the idea of being told as in past tense came to me.

Inspired Spirals

Despite the really cool title of this blog post, I am not spiraling. I am feeling very inspired, though. After finally, FINALLY, submitting grad applications I am feeling a little bit freer with my time. I have been thinking about my thesis non stop and writing some.

I am behind in my word count, but with all the inspiration brewing it is not that the words aren’t around they just aren’t down on the paper yet. Working on that and not too worried about catching up and getting the words down.

The “spiral” I am referring to in the title is more of a working thought around the project. It is a lot of questions about character thoughts and motivations as well as thoughts around the idea of the project. It is shifting a little (maybe lot?) but not too much (I don’t think). It is a little bit of a spiral because I am feeling more inspired in my writing which makes me think the shift is the right direction, but it does bring up a little fear of what the shift could mean for the intentions of the project and losing the main focus or the “importance” of it.

All that being said, I am looking forward to continuing to write and blocking out times to just sit and get the word count to what it needs/what I want it to be. To help I am hoping to meet up (virtually) with some writer groups, go on more walks (even on the treadmill), and maybe change up where I am writing.

Año nuevo, nuevas metas, nuevas escrituras y un nuevo respiro:

HE DESAPARECIDO, así me escribían mis amigos cercanos y alguno que otro conocido. Me perdí por un tiempo, dado que mi salud mental se ha visto afectada (gravemente aunque no lo quisiera) pero aquí estoy empezando este nuevo año e intentando seguir y terminar mi tesis. ¿qué ha pasado con ella? Me propuse la meta de elegir 20 recursos bibliográficos que me permitieran ahondar en mi tema del memoir y el perdón, ha sido dificil, porque mientras leía pensaba ¿realmente he perdonado?, muchas veces llegaba a la conclusión de que no, pero otras veces sentía tranquilidad dentro de mí y sé que esto está ligado al perdón, claramente me duele escribir y leer, pero ese dolor es una muestra de que somos humanos y todos cometemos errores, por ende es importante perdonar. También, he encontrado en mi archivo de fotos muchos momentos con mi familia, mi casa y esto estará en mi tesis, así que van a conocerme más, en mi ambiente, en mi salsa. Estoy asustada for sure, pero el miedo también es una muestra de que soy humana. Aquí voy emocionada por un nuevo semestre y nuevas metas de escritura. Dato: ya va dando más forma lo que he estado escribiendo. 

Primeras veces 


Un paso al lado y adelante 

Estos son los apartados que por ahora han dividido lo que quiero decir. 

New Semester, New Goals

My plan for this semester is to write my novel. That’s it. But I do have plan to make it easier, sort of. I’m going break down my novel into smaller parts.

Each month (Feb, March and April) I will write 4 chapters. Each week I will dedicate one day to research (at least in February) and one day to writing. Throughout the week, I will work on planning, outlining, research, writing, and editing so that not everything happens on just one day.

So on Sundays I may do the bulk of my research, then Monday-Friday I will do more research or planning/outlining and writing. And on Saturdays I will do the bulk of the writing. Towards the end of April I will also be heavy on editing chapters. I will also edit as the days go. Fridays may be dedicated to editing. That way I can edit a lot on Fridays and let my weekends be lighter.

A breakdown of my goals:

  • February
    • Figure out Anixa’s plan
    • Figure out Traxel’s plan
    • Write 4 chapters
  • March & April
    • Write 4 chapters
  • Follow the W Plot structure
  • Outline chapters (1-10, 12 & Epilogue)

I know there’s a chance for more chapters but for right now, I only have 12 chapters left to write and that is what I will focus on. Until the book is done (and even after that), there is always room for more or less chapters.

New Semester. Last Semester. Time to Organize

Feeling excited and absolutely panicked.

As my MFA applications get sent out (due Feb 1) I am going to be diving headfirst into my thesis and be able to make that my main focus (outside of classes etc).

I have a lot of words already in my thesis but I really want to beef it up before I start to revise and cut it down. So the next month will be focused on writing and from there I will move into editing which will require writing as well as I realize plot holes and things that just don’t make sense.

I created a spreadsheet to map out my plan for the semester that focuses solely on Thesis classes and mostly on my thesis.

Is it feasible?…I hope so (I really think so). I am also going to find ways to incorporate more accountability, especially in this month of writing, to keep my butt in the chair.

Feel free to leave comments on the spreadsheet for things that you think might help, things that you think might take longer, etc. Any feedback is helpful and encouraged!

Here is the spreadsheet:

Welcome Back!

Hello again! My last semester (unless its not, but its IS, right?)! I’m pretty excited to work on this project, and the professional wrestling world seems to be rejuvenated as well after what was a most tumultuous 2022. I mean, on January 4th Kenny Omega and Will Ospreay perhaps put on one of the top… say, ten greatest matches that I’ve ever seen. That could have to do with a bit of recency bias but it certainly was *****/*****. 35 minutes of pure bliss, I was engrossed for every single second.

As for my actual thesis, It’s just a matter of mapping out now. I have a good chunk of it well-drafted, I’m over the hump, now its just time to roll down the hill. I’m a body in motion kind of guy. Rest bores me out and boredom depresses me and depression makes me tired, so the more social and active that I am and force myself to be the more productive and happy that I am! So this project will be a good way for me to stay uplifted, because I intend to make it somewhat of a collaborative effort, or at least a good compilation of various corners of my life.

So yeah, here’s to Spring 2023, and whatever may come after!