Ash and Pikachu

I found one of my old journals from…gosh I must’ve been 6 or 7 years old. I was a youngster. Anyways, I drew a picture representing Ash and Pikachu’s relationship (back in those days). Aha…kind of strange that everyone is catching Pokémon now.

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Ash and Pikachu by R at age…6 or 7.

I can’t figure out why the picture came out side ways…but as you can see ash is being electrocuted by pikachu. I can’t stop laughing at this picture. Pikachu used to be such a jerk!

 

Now I Enjoy School

It’s weird…I actually look forward to learning now that I’m in university.

Back in Elementary and High School I felt that learning certain things was a chore…although I went out of my way to gain knowledge on all sorts of subjects. I didn’t like school.

Now I enjoy school. I enjoy class. I enjoy studying different subjects, taking in new information. I enjoy my professors, our teacher assistants, my classmates.

School now is a wonderful place…and I can feel myself beginning to grow more and more as time goes by.

I love this school.

Why Do We Learn Some Things as Fact Versus Fiction?

I started thinking about this while reviewing for my exam: why is it that we learn about things that we know to be fictional as though it were fact?

It’s just a bit strange. A good example of this is how in the fourth grade we read stories about medieval characters such a Joan D’Arc (Joan of Arc), who we all know to be a real person and I recall doing my medieval persons illustration of Robin Hood. I also remember that the reading I had said something along the lines of (this was like 11 years ago), “It is unknown is Robin Hood is merely a fictional character or not.” However we learned about this guy as though he were an actually person, true to life.

Maybe it’s just me. I’m not sure if anyone else has ever thought about this. I’ve thought about it while learning different types of theories back in high school. I kept thinking to myself, “Why are we learning theories when they haven’t been proven?”

Now, I believed in Santa Claus for a long time, even when others told me he wasn’t real and even more than him, I believed in Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer. Red is my favourite colour…and so his song was my favourite of them all. Plus you get to say that Santa wears underwear. I mean what kid doesn’t want to sing something hilarious like that?

I’ve come to the conclusion that the reason we learn about things that are fictional is so that we can take something out of these stories and theories, not actually take them as straight 100% fact. I got here by thinking about the nursery rhymes and Grimm’s fairy tales that we hear as children. Those were meant to tell us about events, and to warn us of different things. Little Red Riding Hood (here I go with red again), is about not trusting strangers with personal information. Jack and Jill is about King Louis XVI of France and his wife Marie Antoinette getting beheaded. La Belle et Le Bête (Beauty and the Beast) is about not judging others based on appearances. If your mother simply said to you, “Jimmy, don’t judge a book by its cover.” then you probably would reply with the good old, “Okaaaaay mom.” and walk away. However, if your mother told you this horrific tale of how a little girl and her grandmother were eaten by a wolf because the little girl told the wolf where her grandmother lives…you would probably never say more than a polite “Hello” to a stranger.

Swings

Found on Google. Photographer Unknown

Growing up is like being on a swing: first you’re placed onto a swing that will hold you in securely, because at this point you’re not strong enough to hold on by yourself. On this swing your parents give you a nice gentle push and you sit there and enjoy the ride.

When you’re ready, your parents place you onto a new swing, one without anything to help you stay on. Now that you are stronger you can hold on by yourself. Still your parents give you a gentle push but one day the push gets harder. Your parents begin to give you under doggies, and the swing bounces in all directions, some of these directions are ones that you shouldn’t go in, but your parents are right there to grab you and pull you back before anything goes wrong.

Finally you’re asked to pump your legs. Your parents believe you’re ready to swing all on your own. You start slow and work your way up. Soon you are doing daring things, like standing on the swing as it moves, or even jumping off of the swing and onto the earth below. You’re without any restraints. You are now free to decide your own limits. You rock the entire swing set and lay on your stomach so that you can see the ground. You do things that you know your parents wouldn’t be proud of, and you do things that you know they would love. You’re officially on your own but even though now you are stronger, you sometimes need someone to come by and give you a little push.

Why I Write

This was a comment that I posted on Cristian Mihai’s blog. I thought I would share it with everyone.

I started writing stories back when I was four years old. I grew up in a time where everything on T.V. was about testing on animals and saving our planet. These topics were almost always the basis for my stories between ages four to seven. Later on I began writing fan-fiction about my favourite cartoons.
I didn’t start to call myself a writer until I was fourteen. That was when I wrote my first novel. I have to say that since then I’ve grown a lot as a writer.
I however am not exactly sure why I write? I used to be very insecure as a kid, but when I started to take my writing more seriously, my own characters ended up teaching me that, “No one can be happy trying to please everyone.”
Being a writer has given me the freedom to be myself, and that is the best gift anyone could ever ask for.

Why I Love Kids Movies

So this evening I went to see the new Despicable Me 2 movie with some friends. Not only did I find the minions hilarious (they honestly make the movie), I also spilt nacho dip all over myself. Now I’m not here to give away any spoilers, I’m actually here to talk about why I love to watch kids movies, and why I think they’re great resources for those looking to get into children’s literature.

Like children’s books, kids movies are usually uncomplicated. I personally find that the simple things, are very hard to dislike. If you are looking at writing a children’s book, or YA (young adult) fiction, I recommend watching kids movies in a theatre full of children as a form of research.

Here’s why:

  1. First off, you get to watch the reactions the kids have to certain themes throughout the movie. This can help you know what most kids find fun, and what they find boring.
  2. An easy way to spark new ideas, is to build on old ones. For example, take what used to be known as a stool, add a back to it, and BAM you’ve got yourself a chair.
  3. Movies that are specifically directed towards children can often bring out your inner child/preteen. Seriously, I laughed at the minions when they made fart sounds with their mouths. I usually find fart sounds annoying and gross.
  4. It’s entertaining and can be very relaxing as well. If you’re stressed out from writing, studying, or even just your day in general, go watch a children’s movie. They rarely disappoint, and they’re usually hilarious. Plus, laughter helps to relieve stress.
  5. You can connect with your audience. You can easily observe them in their natural habitat: listen to the way they speak, look at how they are dressed, and watch what they do. As long as you can observe and become somewhat connected with your audience, you are on the right track.

Now I’m not saying that watching kids movies is the GREATEST and only way that you can do research on children for your books, but it is very easy, beneficial, and it doesn’t seem “weird” or “creepy.”

There are also many other ways that you can do research on kids that are safe, and not considered “creepy.” For instance, you can volunteer with children, or babysit for a friend or family member who has kids. If you have kids of your own, simply get your research from them.

In the end, I promise you’ll get great results, and it will make it so much easier for you to write your books!

Before I go, let me just say that Despicable Me 2 is WAY better than the first movie. I recommend it to anyone who wants to have a good laugh and likes clean humour.

Cleaning My Room

The other day I decided to start cleaning out my room. As a kid (well I still am a kid but that’s besides the point), I would hoard old school work, random notes I wrote to myself as reminders, torn socks that my parents constantly told me to throw out, and several short stories that I never want another soul to read (really bad fan-fictions). After tossing the things I’d hoarded from grades four to eleven off of my book shelf, I almost felt…free. It was as if those memories of bad report cards, and rants about fights I had with my friends were gone. I’d let go of all the things that seemed to occasionally pop back into my life and cause me to remember those somewhat depressing childhood memories (I was bullied in early elementary school).
The reason I had to clean off my bookshelf in the first place, was because one of the shelves had fallen due to all the weight it was under.
I guess you could the bookshelf was a metaphor, it was representing all things I was holding on to that were putting some sort of pressure on me.
Now that those things are gone, I’m no longer under that pressure. I am light as a feather, and I’m ready to begin a new stage in my life.
Today, I started emptying out my dresser. I got the same feeling again but yet, somehow it was a little different. I was almost excited to toss the old clothes from my drawers and onto my bed. I was practically flinging them around, and I started building a mountain out of them. I even quoted Jay Gatsby, from the novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald, “I have a man who sends me shirts from Europe.” I was actually enjoying the release.
When I was younger, I used to dread having to clean my room but now it seems as though it is another sign that I’m growing up. Growing up means, letting go, and as I’ve also learned recently sometimes means saying goodbye. However, though goodbye is a sad thing, it’s never forever. Letting go, and moving on are all apart of life. If you never move on, you’ll never mature, and you’ll never grow.
I sound so old…I guess life does that to you. I still can’t believe I learned this just by cleaning my room.