Trying to find my footing

Every month I plan to start on the 1st.  I don’t know why, but there’s something about starting the month fresh.

And then the 1st passes, and I hesitate and wait and then it becomes a vicious cycle.

I know I have writer’s block, and the best way to get rid of it is to just write.  So that’s my plan.  I have a hard time thinking of how I want to say something, but I certainly have a million things to say.  I’m going to try to stick to a routine and post every other day.  Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

Tuesdays, I’ll talk about life in Japan.  Often I find myself googling something for cooking or cleaning, and I often have to visit a few sites to get all the information I need.  I’d like to compile those and make it simpler for others (and myself!) to access.  I’d also like to talk about adjusting to life here and the differences between America and Japan.

On Thursdays, I’d like to do a little bit of TBT.  For now, I’m sure I’ll run out of old things I want to talk about, but I’ll try to think of some interesting stories… I’ve got a lot of fun ones from my last Japan.

Saturdays will be about opinions and my ideas.  There are so many terrible things going on in the world right now, I’d like to present my take on things and try to have a good discussion among readers.

That’s the plan for now.  It’s approaching Monday night here in Japan, so I’ll be heading off to bed soon.  Look forward to something tomorrow.  I’ll also continue to creatively write over at My Creative Writing Blog and I’m also writing with a friend over at Pen Strokes and Paw Prints. So be sure to head on over and check those out as well.

Back on my game, and finding my niche.  Time to reach for my dreams.

It’s March already?

So much for that every day thing, hahaha.

At least I can laugh at myself.  I’ve been battling sickness and depression since the beginning of the New Year.  I’m also still fully submerged in this nasty writer’s block.

I’ve tried almost everything thinkable to try and combat the issue, so now, I’m taking a new stance.

I was in the bathroom (I swear that’s where I do my best thinking) and I realized talking about having writer’s block isn’t doing me any good.  Because all I end up doing is whining and complaining, but not really doing anything.

So, I decided instead of writing about having writer’s block, I’m going to write, EVERY DAY, (remember this two nights from now Megan when you’re tired and want to go to bed) whatever comes to mind.  It’s an exercise in writing.  I want no clear direction, no limit on word amount, nothing.  I’m just going to sit, for at least 5 minutes and let whatever comes into my head, come out.

So, I’ll be pretty quiet over here on Word Disorder while I’m doing this and be pretty vocal on Scribblin’ About Life.  Maybe if something really good comes of it, I’ll link it over here.  Maybe.

So, with that, I begin on March 2.  Time to suit up and head out to battle.  And I won’t come home until I’m victorious!

Oh, and also…

HAPPY 100th POST!

This is not how I imagined reaching 100, but I did it none-the-less!  Hopefully 200 will be much more meaningful…

Just Another Day

Full of writer’s block.  I have so many things I want to write about but when I sit down, they just… disappear.  I need a drink.

So, in an attempt to pull some inspiration from SOMEWHERE, here’s your favorite photo of your grandparents Megan.

Look at it and remember everything you want to do, and remember that they are watching and guiding you every step of the way.

NandJ

Get writing girl.

An Introduction of Sorts…

I’ve had this blog for a while, but only last year did I really start to update it.  And then I fell off the band wagon, of course.  Haha.

So, in honor of the New Year and the blogging challenge I’ve started (Zero to Blogging Hero, check it out in my sidebar), I want to give a brief introduction of myself.  ^^

Who I Am

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My name is Megan, I’m a 25-year old English teacher living abroad in Japan.  I’m currently in Fukuoka city and I love it.  I graduated from college with a double major in Journalism and Japanese Studies.  It took me a couple years to make the decision to return to Japan, but I finally did in May of 2013 and I couldn’t be happier about my current situation.

Why I’m Writing

I’m a Journalist.  I say that very lightly.  I think ‘struggling’ Journalist would be a better idea.  While I was living in America I had a really difficult time finding a job, even though I had quite a bit of experience and skills.  So, I eventually gave up and applied for an English teaching company in Japan.  This isn’t my end-goal though, I’m still a long way off.  I want to eventually live and support myself by writing.  This blog is my first step in that direction.

I started this with the intention of writing every day.  It got to be too daunting last year, especially with a big move to Japan and not having internet for over a month.  But now that I’m well-adjusted to my life here and have finally figured out a routine, I plan on blogging as much as I can.  I don’t want to say ‘every day’ because let’s be realistic, there might just be some days where I can’t physically do it.  But I’ll try.

And hopefully, exercising my brain and my fingertips every day will help me to clear up my writer’s block.  I’ve been pretty blocked up for over 3 years now, so this is also an attempt to help get my creative juices flowing again.

What Makes me Unique

If I had to describe myself in one sentence, it would be: ‘I am a 25-year old book devouring, video game conquering, bunny loving, crazy craft addict.’

I once briefly flirted with the idea of having a blog dedicated to reading that list of 100 best books, but I never got to it.  Maybe I’ll start it up as a side project later on.  It’s hard to get English books here in Japan though.

I read a lot.  It’s just like watching a movie for me.  My imagination gets so active that sometimes I’ll forget where I am.  Yeah, I was that girl who walked home from school reading, tripped over a bump in the sidewalk and scrapped my arms/hands up just so I wouldn’t ruin the book.  Ahhh, some of the best years of my life.

My favorite author is Karin Slaughter.  She writes crime fiction, and boy is she good at it.  I’ve been hooked since book one.  I’ve met her in person one time and I almost died I was so excited.  I’ve always won one of her contests… I won the consolation ‘Don’t ever bake cupcakes again’ prize.  You can check it out here: http://www.karinslaughter.com/cupcakes2.shtml

I’m also a pretty big gamer and I have been my whole life.  I grew up with Nintendo.  I love anything Mario related and if it’s an RPG, I have to at least try it.  Two of my all-time favorite games are: Baten Kaitos and Tales of Symphonia.  I just recently bought a PS3 and have been addicted to Skyrim and Assassin’s Creed.  I’m always looking for new games to play, so throw some suggestions my way.  Tales of Xillia is arriving in the mail sometime next week, so of course I’ll be holed up playing that.

I have a healthy an unhealthy addiction to bunnies.  I got my first rabbit when I was 13.  His name was Cream.  He had a brother that I named Cookies.  One day I’ll scrounge up a photo of the two of them.  This is Cream.

Cream

He was my best friend for a really long time.  He passed away two days after my 23rd birthday.  That’s right, I had him for 10 years.  That’s an incredibly long time for a dwarf bunny.  I still miss him every single day.  Every one used to laugh and say that he was an exact copy of me, just in rabbit form.  He had the perfect attitude and everything.  That was my baby.  So, from having him for so long, stemmed this addiction to bunnies.

I love all types of bunnies.  Big, floppy eared bunnies to small, fuzzy fluff ball bunnies.  And everything in-between.  If it looks like a rabbit, I’ve probably saved the pictures, pinned it on Pinterest and posted it on my blog.  I’m a Grade A bunny enthusiast.  And I am NOT ashamed.

And lastly, I’m a craft addict.  It’s hard to be addicted to crafts in a country where you read/speak minimal Japanese, but as I learn more every day I plan on getting back into my crafting.  I used to make my own Christmas cards and do other random crafts I found on Pinterest.  I grew up in a house that really fostered creativity.  To this day my mom’s basement is full of every possible crafting item you might need.  Seriously, it’s like craft haven.  I miss it sometimes.  I could just go down there and create whatever I wanted.  For Halloween this year my best friends and I painted skulls.

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I’ll definitely be one of those moms that always does a bunch of crafts with their kids.  I’ll probably enjoy them more than the kids will.  ^^

What to Expect

Some days, I’m not even sure what I’m going to post.  Yesterday it was a collection of my favorite YouTube artists.  Tomorrow it might finally be a post I’ve been meaning to write since September.  Or maybe we’ll talk about skin cancer.  Or, honestly, maybe I’ll revisit illiteracy in America again.  Who knows.

And that’s honestly what makes blogging so much fun for me.  I never have a set plan, I never have set goals.  I just write, which is sometimes the best way to do it.  If something inspires me, I want to just take it and run with it.  I do have some loose plans for things I would like to do, but it’s never concrete.  I blog pretty much the way I live my life, ‘Whatever happens, happens.’

And you know what, I’m ok with that.

So sit down, shut up, keep your hands and feet in the car at all times, and hang on.  It’s going to be a wild ride.  Let’s embrace 2014 together, with a smile on our face and the wind at our backs!

Radioactive

I can’t get this song out of my head.  It may not help that I keep clicking ‘replay’ on YouTube, but oh well.  If you haven’t heard it on the radio, or you haven’t seen the video you should definitely give it a peek.  The video is about an underground stuffed animal fighting ring… very interesting concept!

This song inspires me, like so many others do, haha.  Ever since I heard it on the radio I’ve been meaning to find it on YouTube and give it a good listen.  And now that I have I can really feel it.  I really like the beat, even without the words I could listen to this song.  And the lyrics, actually, aren’t half bad either.  I might have to write something in the next couple of days with this song on.

Speaking of inspiration, I wrote War the other night with Adam Lambert’s ‘Underneath’ on repeat.  It’s not necessarily the lyrics, or what they mean, that I draw inspiration from.  It might be just a single phrase, or maybe even a word.  But usually, I’d say 9 times out of 10, it’s the way the beat of the song makes me feel.  If I can really feel it, almost like it resonates in my soul, it’s almost impossible to keep the inspiration from  hitting.  Having writer’s block, though, has made it hard to actually put this inspiration into words.

This is another of those songs, that the beat really speaks to me.  I actually got into a discussion with a co-worker the other day about Evanescence’s music.  While, I have noticed, some of her lyrics can be really misinterpreted as very depressing, the music is actually exceptional.  Just because someone posts a song, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a tell-all about their lives, and that they’re super depressed.  They actually may just like the song.  We even discussed instrumental versions of their music, and I would actually pay for an album.  I’ve always really liked Evanescence, and I do believe some of my earlier work came while listening to their earlier stuff.

Speaking of, when I write, there always has to be a song on.  It doesn’t necessarily have to be a specific song (though it usually is).  I cannot write in silence.  It drives me crazy.  There has to be noise and I usually prefer it so loud it drowns out the rest of the background noise.  I like the music so loud (and i know this is bad) that you have to tap me on the shoulder to tell me to turn my headphones down because you can hear them in the next room (this has actually happened).   I know it’s bad, but when I get like that, it’s when I know I’m truly in my creative space and in the zone to write something good.

Breaking the Block

Let’s talk writer’s block again.  I’ve been battling my own block for a long time… roughly four years now.  I started this blog, with the encouragement from others, as a means to help combat this growing problem.  It’s working, and it’s not.

I’m a creative writer, I enjoy writing from a totally non-first-person point of view.  I, until the block, used written word as a means to help alleviate the emotional and mental pain/frustration I was going through.  It helped get me through most of my years at college, but I suddenly felt dried up.  Is there a well we’re all born with, that eventually runs dry?  Why is it that I can sit here, talk about music videos and discuss quotes and bunnies until I’m blue in the face, but I can’t physically sit down and write something from a creative stand point.

And it’s really not from a lack of ideas.  They’re all there.  Rumbling around in my noggin.  Interesting ideas, great ideas, things I have this never-ending itch to write down, to solidify with ink and make them… ‘real.’  But then, when I sit to do it, it just doesn’t come.  I put on music that helps me to write, I try to block out the background noise and I try to get to that zone, but I can’t reach it anymore.

I’m getting desperate at this point.  Maybe subconsciously I still feel like I’m ‘too’ busy, even though I quit my second job.  Maybe I’m not blocking out the right amount of noise, or maybe I”ll still just too displeased with the direction my life has taken to really feel anything inspirational.

I sit with these thoughts everyday.  And then I think to myself, maybe that’s why I can’t find a job as a Journalist.  Maybe potential employers can see this big stamp on my forehead that says dried up, incapable, blocked.  I don’t know anymore.  I know I’ve got the talent, not trying to be egotistical, but it’s there.  And the first step to actually being good is to acknowledge that you are, in fact, a decent writer.  So then, what seems to be the problem.

I want to be a narrative journalist.  I want to tell everyone’s story.  I want to tell every story, from the immigrant who came here to start their own restaurant, to the girl who helped saved a cat from a tree.  No story is too big or too small; we all have a story to tell.  And I really want to be the one to tell it.  But then, I sit and this well is just, gone.  The bucket has hit the bottom, rattling around on the cobblestones.  The rope falls with ease, falling amongst the lonely bucket, curling against its wooden frame, offering kind words to its untimely demise.

But maybe, just maybe, there’s another rope, with a hook, destined to pick the old one back up.  And maybe, one day, the bucket will rise from the darkness of the one well, and realize that what it had imagined was the only supply of life, was just one section, one small, infinitesimal piece of the world.  And in a couple years, as the bucket works with speed and grace once more, carrying a never-ending amount of creativity, it will realize that the brief blip, the dark, unforgiving world it thought it had sunken into, is meaningless now.

And with a smile, I’ll transfer this creativity into work, for everyone to see.

I just have to remember… Never. Give. Up.  Every single world I write here is one, small step in the right direction.  And on nights like tonight, when it feels hopeless… I know I’ll look back in a couple years and think about how melodramatic I had become.  And then I’ll laugh, probably a lot.  Being able to laugh at oneself is important.

Laugh I will.  Laugh until it hurts.

Confessions

In keeping with the LOTR theme, I wanted to delve into the real reason why I’m so obsessed with the LOTR universe.  And also offer up the explanation to my username, that dozens of people have asked me about through the years.  This is a confession I’ve held in for a long time, not a lot of people know this.  It’s not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but it’s usually a part of myself that I keep, well, to myself.

It all started when the first LOTR movie came out, the Fellowship of the Ring.  I was just barley 13 years old, a freshman in high school.  And I became massively obsessed with role-playing online.  It was really the first big thing I learned about on the internet.  And I fell in love almost instantaneously.

I remember watching the movie for the first time, and being fascinated.  Both my mother and brother had read the book before, but I had no idea what it was.  They took me to watch the movie and something just clicked.  I had always loved Elijah Wood, but I knew it wasn’t just his character in the movie, but the whole thing.  So, I got home, hopped online, and looked for the role-playing forum of the website I was on.

I was horrible at first.  I had never done anything like this before, and I was 13.  I sounded like a 13-year-old.  I knew I was horrible, a Mary Sue, but I quickly found a group of friends online (all of us from all-over the globe) that accepted me for all of my horrible role-playing flaws, and began to encourage me.  This is really where my writing ability grew leaps and bounds.  I began to recognize what cliches were, and how to actually illustrate something with words, rather than typing it out bit by bit to convey the same message.

They were the group that gave me my nickname, blinksan.  I had some sort of _blinklvr_02_ username (I was 13, alright) and they shortened it to Blink.  Everyday I was greeted with Blink, Blinkers, until finally, someone used Blinksan.  And it has stuck ever since.

I quickly found myself on these role-playing boards everyday.  I created my own character (I felt I just couldn’t do the actual characters from the novel justice) and had a lot of fun.  We’d go on random quests for no purpose, hang out in the Shire for a day, or trudge up the sides of Mt. Doom to destroy the ring together.  It was in these moments that I really felt the pull of writing and the fantasy world.  We began to create different worlds, and I expanded into other fandoms and began to role-play in the x-men universe, among others.  (It was a while ago, my brain is faulty!)

Back to the creation aspect; some people were simply amazing.  They would illustrate these beautiful worlds from just a couple sentences, and all of a sudden there I was, sitting on the grass, watching as my own character interacted with everyone else.  We created something that was ours, something that was special.  And after a couple years, my writing ability was honed into the talent I have today.  I really feel that if it weren’t for those few years role-playing I really wouldn’t be able to craft the pieces I have.  I gained something invaluable from those years, a real skill.  It’s one thing to have all these glorious ideas; I’ve always had them.  It’s a different thing to be able to write down what’s in your head in such a way that it’s like everyone else is reading your mind.  That’s a gift.  And one I plan to use for the rest of my life.

There ‘s this beautiful world inside of my head, just begging to come out.  At this point, it’s almost like it’s threatening to come out.  With this blog, I’ve slowly started to chisel away at the plug that sits deep in my creativity.  For years, I’ve been stunted, unable to produce anything.  I’ve had writer’s block, or so that’s what I’ve said.  I just really haven’t had the desire to let anything escape.  But now, with each word that appears in this screen, I feel another strike of the hammer.  A deep, resonating sound fills the space between my ears and travels down into the depths of my soul.  And bit by bit, the plug crumbles away… every so often, a bit of colorful flair, a sense of my old creativity bleeds out, gracing page, sitting and waiting for the rest to come tumbling out.  And as I continue everyday, the process quickens, until one day, I know it will break free, the plug with finally disintegrate into dust.  I’ll draw in a deep breath, and for a moment, I know I’ll pause.  I’ll look back at the past three years, and think of all the time I’ve wasted.  And for a moment, I know I’ll mourn.  And then, with a slight smile, I’ll let out my breath and blow every last speck of my inhibitions away and let my words speak for themselves.

Until that moment, I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing.  But I know it’s coming.  I can feel it, so acutely, that sometimes it’s almost painful.  But the knowledge of what awaits me on the other side is enough to keep me going.  One day I’ll overcome this obstacle as well, and then there will be no holding me back.