interview reflection

this is less about my interview and unfortunately more about my lack of an interview, so…

Why couldn’t I get an interview?

There were a few reasons, Hayley Williams is obviously a pretty big deal, reaching out to her directly didn’t seem like much of an option, I attempted to find a way to contact her agent, unfortunately I couldn’t find any email addresses and the only phone number I could find was very long distance and would have cost a fair amount. Next I tried to find a way of getting a packet that might have been sent out to a media company, but I couldn’t find anyone to contact about something along those lines. The next obvious route seemed to be via social media, the “tag her in everything” tactic, disappointingly Hayley Williams just very publicly went through a social media detox, from what I could figure out, she no longer has social media accounts, so that was no longer a viable option to contact her through. Several of my classmates recommended reaching out to a band mate, or someone who knows her personally, but many of her band mates have very bad relationships with her, so I figured asking someone who’s actively suing her might not be the best way of finding out more about her personality from an unbiased point of view. One thing that I probably should have better explored was interviewing someone else is the punk/emo/punk pop genre, one of the reasons that I delayed reaching out to someone like this and put definitely too much effort into trying to reach out and get a media packet about her was because as much as I am interested in the genre I also wanted to know more about her, and her personal experiences with over coming struggles, the direction I’ve gone in with much of my eminent has focused more on Hayley Williams as a person and less on her genre, because I feel that all she’s dealt with and done, all whilst being highly talented is truly what makes her eminent.

Of course, since I wasn’t able to get to get an interview, I had to make up for this hole in my research somehow, luckily an upside of her being so famous and well known was if I watched and read enough interviews that other people have done with her I was able to gather similar information to many of the questions that I might have asked, and I incorporated this into what I wrote in my learning center about her. As much as I didn’t actually get an interview with her, I did get to hear/read her answers to many of my questions about her.

The morale of the story is essentially that A) I should have definitely started looking for someone to interview sooner, I thought it would be easier then I turned out to be B) I should have been more willing to compromise on what I wanted in an interview, learning more about the genre and it’s effects on others who are a part of it would have been better than nothing.

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eminent night

Hi and welcome to eminent night!

I’m Hayley Williams and tonight I’ve prepared some important details of my life and work for you to look through.

enjoy!

this is a brief summary of my rather long winded explanations in the flip book

please feel free to leave any questions you have in the comments!

developing leaders around you- John C Maxwell

Developing leaders around you

 

Recently as a leadership exercise, we watched  John C Maxwell’s talk on developing leaders around you, these were some points I thought were particularly important

 

“An organizations potential is directly related to its personnel”, this goes for any team. Team members and the way that the view the team will make or break the team, people who view the team positively will contribute with more energy and people who highly value the team will put more work into insuring its success. Making sure you have cohesive team members that work together is important because otherwise the team will not have each other’s backs and may fail, a positive team with members who have respect for each other will work better than one without, this is one of the ways the team members are essential to the success of an origination. This idea has relevance to me because I know how difficult or easy working on a team can be based on the other members and how the other members interactions with myself effect how i see the team and act in the team, people tend to work harder for a team when all the other personnel are pleasant to be around, which typically makes them more pleasant to be around, and the cycle continues, making personnel and the way the interact what makes or breaks the team. This concept is hugely important when planning hikes has it is important to remember that we, the team members have the power the control the success or failure of any talons trip.

“Leaders think differently”, this is something that we can consciously except and try and think about, and thinking “how can I approach this problem like a leader.” “The major difference between successful and unsuccessful people is how they think”. An important part of team work and mentoring is to talk to the leaders around you about strategies you have for a leadership point of view, and to ask the leaders around you what some considerations they’ve made with leadership are. It is important for me to think about and consider how i can look at problems from a leadership angle. Before addressing a group I often make considerations about whether or not I’m coming at a problem from a leadership angle, this is what makes the concept of “leaders think differently” relevant to me, because i find it fascinating to consider how leaders think differently. Acknowledging that leaders think differently and making considerations about this/ sharing said considerations with your team is relevant to the success of any talons event where the grade tens are passing on knowledge to the grade nines as it is important that we share what we’ve learned about leader style thinking with them.

 

“Effective mentors have compassion and the ability to hear what another person is saying without judging what they are saying”, it is important when on a team or as a leader to always respect others ideas, if you as a leader or a team member make others feel bad about presenting certain ideas, even when they might have an idea that works better for the situation they may feel hesitant to share for fear of being ridiculed. Listening with compassion and encouraging sharing is important to a positive team structure, listening to everyone openly makes for a more inclusive and welcoming team environment and giving everyone a platform to share makes for a better team in the long run as you will have more people willing to share more good ideas on a team with a compassionate leader then you would on a team with an uncompassionate leader. I can relate to this idea personally as i feel that i tend to work better on a team with a positive and compassionate leader who can listen to ideas or suggestions without making anyone feel judged or less then accepted. I find that a team with a compassionate leader makes me unafraid to share ideas and help problem solve, where as a team with an uncompassionate leader often makes me feel judged causing myself (and those around me) to not share as many ideas. Remembering to lead with compassion is something that can and should be employed at all talons events as it makes participants, mentees and fellow leaders feel more open and comfortable to share their thoughts and ideas

 

So, can the skills that make a leader so talented be taught or does it have to be a skill that’s been ingrained or is a “natural skill”

 

Maxwell, J.C (2014) developing the leaders around you. The john Maxwell company

 

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Interview reflection

As a practice for our interviewing of people more knowledgeable then us about  our eminent person, we interviewed our classmates and asked them questions about themselves. From this process I learned several things about how to perform a better interview when I (eventually) get to interview my eminent person. Firstly I found being interviewed quite difficult, and I think this will help me to be a better interviewer as I now better understand some of the difficulties of being interviewed. I also think that in this interviewing process I learned more from watching the group I was partnered with do interviewed then I did from doing my own. Firstly I noted something smart that the other group had done was have larger questions with small relating sub questions, so that the interviewee wasn’t bombarded with an assortment of different questions that they had to change there train of thought to answer. I think what I learned from this mock interviewing process that I can quite possibly apply to my official interview are, I should have had better prepared questions, I didn’t make having thoughtful questions  priority and instead went for quantity over quality, as well I certainly should have had more sub questions as well as larger question instead of just having larger questions that didn’t flow well. As an interviewer I didn’t prioritize body langue, such as being open and making eye contact and was critiqued on this, specifically for not making enough eye contact, this was probably from a mix of not having my questions memorized (which while it doesn’t seem mandatory for an interview, is something I will certainly strive to do in the future.) and being slightly nervous about interviewing someone, it was a different experience the what I am usually used to. If anything my slight lack of preparedness and nerves highlighted the reasons why doing a mock interview was incredibly important. From this test I learned a lot, when I am actually interviewing someone for my eminent person I want my interviewing skills to be very polished, especially with even the one in a million chance that I could interview my eminent person. regardless of who I interview I do not wish to waste there time with me not knowing my own questions well enough. I will use all of the skills that I learned in the mock interview in my actually interview.

I think I learned a surprising amount from this exercise. I have recently had to practice interviewing for other classes and I thought that I had my interviewing skill down, however doing this kind of an interview was definitely different from my other experiences and I’m glad that I got this chance to learn from myself and my peers about the interviewing process.

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eminent comment reflection

After reading through others blog posts I have learned quite a bit, both about my classmates and some interesting historical (and current) figures I knew very little about. It was interesting to hear about others connections to their eminent people and I learned quite a bit about others interests, as well, it was interesting to hear about why others picked specific people as there eminent people and I saw many similarities between why I chose Hayley Williams as an eminent person and why other people chose specific figures. I think one thing that I realized I could work on in the future after reading others blog post is doing extra research, I think I researched only the points I wished to share about, whoever everyone’s post that I read seemed to have extremely through research done and include smaller details that may not be quite as common knowledge about there eminent people. I’m sure that if there eminent people had such interesting things mine must too and I’m excited to find out about them as I start more research  and (hopefully) interview someone who is more informed about the subject then I am.

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Eminent person

“sometimes it takes a good fall to know where you really stand”-Hayley Williams

My eminent person is Hayley Williams, 

I picked her as my eminent person for a lot of reasons, first off because I love music and the entertainment business, I love to sing and I almost always have headphones in so it was important to me to pick someone who was involved in entertainment. I decided on Hayley Williams for a lot of reasons though. The first being that I love two thousand emo, Pop punk and alt music so I wanted to pick someone with influence in the era. I admire Hayley Williams personally, much of her media presence is due to her standing up for the things that she believes in, such as standing up against homophobia. She is unafraid to discuss taboo subjects, like toxic relationships and mental health, she also runs a pretty successful business that incorporates itself both into the culture surrounding her style of music and her personal brand, with an emphasis on ethical business and special focus on going the extra mile to make a more enjoyable costumer experience (yes, I know this sounds like an ad, but I promise I’m not being sponsored). She’s someone I both look up to for her musical career and for her personal beliefs. 

Hayley Williams of Paramore

 

It is clear that Hayley Williams is an incredibly driven person, she started her own band at seventeen that now has a song with over 200 million streams on Spotify. I want to emulate this spirit of hard work and dedication both in the talons program and in life which is one of the reasons that I really wanted to talk about Hayley Williams for the eminent project. 

I want to continue to research and learn about my eminent person because of the things she’s accomplished. She has massive confidence in the media, she is a millionaire and business woman and is most well  known for something she loves, music, and isn’t being an accomplished person in a field you enjoy and are passionate about the dream?  

I think in the coming weeks I would like to focus my research more on her musical career, I have focused a lot on her more business and social justice side, but the original reason I chose her for my eminent person was her astounding work with the band “Paramore” (that she is the founder and lead singer of) and her independent work. Her original intent for songs was to make music that was relatable to people of all ages, she wanted to write about problems that the average person experiences. She will be remembered in the future for the ways that she’s revolutionized the music industry. Originally pop punk was open and inclusive, there was a low tolerance for discrimination and bands such as nirvana went so far as to say fans who didn’t respect woman shouldn’t bother buying their records, unfortunately this changed in the early 2000’s and many female and queer fans started to notice it was an industry they were slowly less and less welcome in. Then Paramore hit the seen with “riot!” this was there first album the made it big and lead singer Hayley Williams blew fans away with lyrics that essentially said down with misogyny. this was when there was yet another industry shift, this time for the better. Hayley Williams left a mark on the universe, both through having her own take on music and having her own take on lyrics, as previously stated, she talked about more down to earth problems and made her music emotion accessible to any and all fans. 

Paramore’s Hayley Williams teases new solo material

Obviously, as with any successful person she’s had her fair share of struggles, she openly talks about her parents separation when she was a young child and the emotional impacts that’s had on her. She’s struggled with mental health in many more and speaks openly about her fight to overcome personal and emotion hurdles to become the incredibly successful and iconic artist that she is today. She spoke in her lyrics about issues such as mental health before even the world health organization was treating it as the health problem it is, her lyrics helped form stronger connections within a music community and, have helped introduce millions of pop punk/ emo fans to the genre (including myself). 

in summary Hayley Williams is eminent because she broke the mold, she stepped outside of the box and it paid off through a lot of hard work and some brilliant lyrics, she’s running a biasness that centers around a massive part of her personal brand (hair coloring and styling) and continues to revolutionize every industry she steps into to this day. 

 

 

 

Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, October 22). Hayley Williams. Wikipedia. Retrieved October 22, 2021, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hayley_Williams. 

 

Corp, P. author B. I., & (required), N. (2020, June 13). How paramore revolutionized pop punk: The enduring legacy of riot! Thirteen years later. A Grrrl’s Two Sound Cents. Retrieved October 22, 2021, from https://izzyshutup.com/2020/06/12/how-paramore-revolutionized-pop-punk-the-enduring-legacy-of-riot-thirteen-years-later/. 

Ganz, C. (2020, March 4). How Hayley Williams saved herself (and, BTW, paramore). The New York Times. Retrieved October 22, 2021, from https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/04/arts/music/hayley-williams-paramore.html. 

Hayley Williams quotes. Quotefancy. (n.d.). Retrieved October 22, 2021, from https://quotefancy.com/hayley-williams-quotes.

image citations

first

Hayley Williams of Paramore performs at the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival on June 8, 2018 in Manchester, Tenn. (2021, February 16). [Photograph]. Hayley Williams of Paramore Performs at the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival on June 8, 2018 in Manchester, Tenn. https://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/rock/9526374/hayley-williams-ready-for-next-paramore-album/ 

second

Winter, K. (2019, December 28). Kevin Winter/Getty Images. [Photograph]. https://www.thefader.com/2019/12/28/hayley-williams-solo-music

digital literacy final reflection

  • What are your thoughts on hybrid learning (in person and at home) compared to when you are in your learning groups (at school for all classes). Which format do you prefer, and why?

Both have their pros and cons; I find at home learning to be an interesting and useful experience as I have more control over what assignment I’d prefer to work on at what time. This can be useful if I have a really good idea about a certain project because since at home learning is less structured so I can choose to work on the project that I have the good idea about, as opposed to in class learning where there might be a certain project we’re working on. In person learning has many definitive pro’s though as we can have more interactions with our peers and possibly go over our ideas with them. I don’t really think one system is exclusively more enjoyable then the other I really enjoy the mix of both as I think they balance each other out. 

  • How has technology benefitted you during the hybrid learning experience?

Most, if not all of our at home learning has been online, and before covid, I wasn’t great with computers. I think the learning about how to be safe on computers and use our time on our computers productively has really helped me create better online projects when I am working from home. I think if I didn’t have a computer for hybrid learning I wouldn’t have been able to do any work. Teams has been an extremely useful piece of technology throughout hybrid learning, as it has helped me greatly in following assignments due dates and being able to work on said assignments both on school and in class. 

  • How has technology impeded you during the hybrid learning experience?

My biggest issue with technology was poor wifi connections. When you only use technology if the wifi goes down you can’t really do much work (paper worksheets don’t need to buffer). There were a few times over the year where my home wifi went down for a few hours which normally wouldn’t have been a big deal, however I had assignments that I need to finish and handed them in late. 

  • Is there anything that you hope remains a part of school that was new because of hybrid learning after the pandemic is over and school returns to normal?

I really think having one hybrid day a week, or even every two weeks could be beneficial. A chance to work from home often gives people a chance to work at their own pace without interruption, which is helpful to productivity and de-stressing. To that extent, people getting to work in an environment they feel comfortable in (like their homes.) does make schoolwork less stressful. 

  • Link to 2 Projects in school /TALONS that used digital technology and explain how the use of that digital technology enhanced your project. Ideas include In-Depth, Eminent, Zip, individual class projects in Talons or other subjects… 

I think that my in-depth and eminent projects most shows off my ability to use technology. 

In-depth: I had to use a lot of new technology skills to create a “choose your own adventure story” and to show off my work through bi-weekly blogposts. 

Eminent: this was my first blog post based project and I had to have a fair amount of growth in my technology skills to be able to well show case my work in an interactive way. 

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in depth final post.

 Hi! 

 

Welcome to the final presentation of my in-depth. I will try to briefly explain my project so I can show you what I’ve done. I set out at the beginning of this project with a goal in mind, to at least try and write a novel with some good characters and a fair amount of detail, and then to present those characters and ideas to others. I initially wanted to write ten or so chapters with multiple drafts, and I did meet that; I have 22 chapters with a single draft and 10 chapters with a second draft ( I’ve posted the draft of the first 3 chapters in other blog posts as evidence of learning if your interested in reading through them.) anyway, bellow I have posted a chose your own adventure adaption of chapter 14 of my book (I thought it was an eventful interesting chapter that would generate some actual interest in the book.) and brief list of characters in my book, enjoy! 

 

this is a choose your own adventure version of chapters 13-14 of my book as i felt they were very engaging chapters. they were slightly adapted to fit the chose your own adventure format but i think they represent the detail, character development and first person narration that i was working on. ( to access  please go to the choose your own adventure story at the top of the page)

 

 

 

 

This is a brief description of all of the characters in my book and what purpose they have. The classifications are… 

Main character: frequent dialogue, appears on nearly every page, greatly contributes to the plot 

Sub main: two out of three of the above characteristics i.e. greatly contributes to the plot and has frequent dialogue but isn’t on every page  

Side character: has occasional dialogue, often supports the main characters back story more so then they do the plot, only appears in a couple of chapters  

Back ground character: either only mentioned or has one or two lines of dialogue 

Character name                                      character type                                 character details   

Safina Dupont   

Narrating main character   

Narrates the whole book. after her family uproots its self and moves back to the town her dad grew up in, follow her on some pretty insane adventures around the town of black pine.  

Personality traits. 

Witty/sarcastic  

Curious  

Quirky 

Creative 

observant 

Anniya Pavlov   

Main character   

A native a black pine, or so we think… she knows a lot of the secrets and the lies behind the ‘charming town’ facade. But she’ll only reveal the dark and gloomy things with time. She wants to leave because she doesn’t truly belong in black pine. 

 

Personality traits. 

 Tough 

Sporty 

Adventurous 

Reckless 

Impulsive. 

David Pavlov   

Main character   

He wants to believe he should be there. Unlike his twin sister he’s nervous to break the mold and go on adventures, he doesn’t want to admit the things he’s seen.  

 

Personality traits 

Artsy 

Shy  

Quiet  

intelligent 

Alex Dupont   

Sub main character   

Just the guy bagging grocery’s at the local store right? Well…probably. we actually may never know. no one gives him a second look until his sister mysteriously dies.  

Evlyn Dupont   

Side character   

She seems to kind and too welcoming at first, but she can probably tell if your family (even if the space time continuum can’t)  

Ruby   

Side character   

Just an ‘innocent’ girl who lost her best friend.  

Thomas   

Side character   

Just Rubys  ‘innocent’ classmate  

Mayor Dupont   

Side character   

 The rather aggressive and toxic mayor of black pine  

Mr. Dupont (Safina’s dad)  

Side character   

 Safina’s extremely stressed out father  

Ms. Dupont (Safina’s mom)  

Side character   

 Safina’s calm and artistic mother  

Ms. Edwards   

Side character   

 The math teacher, she seems like the only thing in this town that’s moved in to the twenty first century. 

Mr. Owens   

Side character   

 The history teacher who may actually still be stuck in the nineteenth century  

sheriff  

Back ground character   

 The town sheriff.  

Millie Dupont   

Back ground character   

 Alexs sister. 

  

But what exactly is black pine? 

I feel like the plot spelled out in a single (and hopefully attention grabbing) sentence would be ‘in a tiny town held together by a thin web of lies, murders and fires only the ghosts know the truth.’ But black pine is really a world I’m trying to create, one of the difficult (and unexpected) parts of writing a fiction novel is research, I’ve been trying to essentially create a magical rule book as in the book we go back and forth between past and modern day black pine.   

 

I thought that adding some visuals might make the world of black pine come more to life, I really like drawing and have read in several places that drawing your characters can help you write them better so these are some sketches I did of my characters, just in case you were curious what my characters look like. 

safina:

                                                                        Anniya:

                                                                                                                             

david:

 

if you’re interested in seeing the edited chapters of my book here is a copy ( not all of the chapter after 10 have names yet)

                                     thank you for reading through my in-depth I hope you enjoyed it!

 

in-depth post 6

project type: writing a novel using first person narration. 

Big goals: write a minimum of ten chapters and however far I end up writing by march 23 should be at least 25 thousand words ( half of the minimum amount of words that a novel should be) and to have both a first draft and a second draft that includes good character development and detail for a fully immersive world. 

revisions to big goals: write a minimum of ten chapters with two drafts and fifteen chapters with one draft. by late may there should be at least 35 thousand words.

 

Progress report. 

Last blog post I had said that I was working on chapter 14 and after march 23 my plan was to switch mainly to an editorial and writing my second draft role. I have done relatively well on both fronts; I have finished chapters 14-16 and have edited chapters 1-9 as well as starting on a second draft of chapters 16. The editing has gone quite well, I am trying to remember everything I have been recently studying about grammar and plot. I have ended up adding quite a bit to my novel as I am starting my second draft, I am currently trying to work on adding traits to my characters that hint to later plot points and reveals concerning said characters.  

 

As I had also mentioned on my last blog post, I have begun work on a written list of magical laws for my story so that there can be fluency in the way that the characters interact with magic to avoid plot holes.  

 

Obstacles and frustrations. 

When I initially started writing my novel, while I did have a relatively detailed lay out of how things were going to work, it wasn’t perfect and as the characters have changed and been altered I’ve had to deviated from that original plan, meaning that my second draft has been an obstacle to write as it ended up being written with the ability to have a range of endings, now that I’ve come up with an ending that works, I have had to re-write quite a bit of the first few chapters to fit the end and it is taking more time then I would like; however I do understand that this is an important part of novel writing as the best things aren’t simply written, they are re-written, so it is an frustration that I will have to deal with.  I do now see how starting with a more determined end goal in mind could have cost me some of my current frustration.  

Evidence of progress  

This is (edited) chapter 3. I personally think that this is the most important chapter since it is when all the main characters are introduced. 

  • Black pine chapter 3  
  •  
  •  
  •  At first, I only walked through forests, after about ten minutes I came to the end of our driveway, then I turned and started walking down the dirt road and eventually into the town. He town didn’t look much different from an old western town from movies, it had a general store, a diner and a few buildings that, while they weren’t clearly marked, looked like more stores. There was nothing familiar, I saw no brands or logos, I couldn’t have told you what time this was built, the town would have looked just as appropriate as a set on an old frontier movie as it did for me to be walking through it.  
  •  
  •  This place is stupid, I mean, yes the massive house is cool and I’m in to the rustic feel but it’s dumb! the nearest town with more than 200 people is 75 miles away. 
  •  I looked up and saw a few things the first was an old general store made out of some stupidly beat up wood it looked like the was a gun shot or two in the porch and only one of the 3 windows wasn’t broken. 
  •  
  •  I figured I should stop starring at the broken building because it was making me nervous, so I closed my eyes and listened, my school councilor had said that centered you or some crap like that once, so I tried it; I heard a bird, some wind in the trees and bushes and a bell, it sounded like a school bell, at least they had a school, although apparently the high school only had 30 students. I could barely hear the chatter of students leaving and they all seemed to be moving away from me. 
  •  
  •  Like our family mansion I guess most people lived in the forest.  
  •  
  • I stood with my eyes closed until I heard something else panting and fast foot steps I looked up and saw a girl 20 or so feet away. She had long coffee brown hair in a braid that went to her waist, vivid green eyes and pale skin first she turned I thought she was looking at me, but she called out “ David” then turned the other way and smacked me in the face with her braid. 
  •  
  • It didn’t hurt, the people on my soccer team would hit each other in the face with our hair all the time, it woke us up for early practice, but the girl looked horrified “ohmygodi’msososossorry” it came out all as one word. 
  •  
  •  “hi” I said 
  •  
  •  “ don’t worry it’s not a big deal” 
  •  
  •  “still I feel terrible” she stopped and looked surprised then she looked me up and down and paused “ are you…. new here?” 
  •  
  •  “ oh um ya I am actually” 
  •  
  •  she turned around and screamed “David” at the top of her lungs 
  •  
  •   “what?” I heard a guy yell back. 
  •  
  •  he rounded a corner from about 30 feet at first there was something about him I couldn’t quite place he looked familiar, I just couldn’t figure out why… then it hit me  He looked exactly like the girl, I knew a boy and girl couldn’t be identical twins but these two must have been as close as you could get. 
  •  
  •  “ this is David” said the girl she pointed back at who I could only assume was her brother. 
  •  
  •  “ well alright but who are you” I was on edge and must  of not sounded friendly because she recoiled. 
  •  
  •  “ oh opps sorry I’m Anniya it’s nice to meet you” she said. 
  •  
  •  she was half smiling but still seemed weary of me like she had a million questions that she was deciding if she wanted to ask me.  
  •  
  • Even though she was about 3 inches shorter of me she was immediately intimidating, maybe it was the old football gear sticking out of her bag or just the way she was staring at me but she made me nervous. “ David this girl is new here” and gave her brother the weirdest look like she was trying to ask if she should run away from me. 
  •  
  •  That’s when I  started noticing the differences between the two of  them, he had on paint splattered jeans ( not in an intentional way but in an I paint so much this is just what I look like now way) and a navy blue  t-shirt. 
  •  
  •  she had on a forest green tank top, basketball shorts and her legs looked like she’d recently fallen into a blackberry bush. 
  •  
  •  Finally after 30 seconds or so the guy spoke up “ sorry we don’t exactly welcome new people” he was not intimidating in the least. 
  •  
  •  he was almost shrinking away from me he looked so shy and scared and his voice was shaking a little. 
  •  
  •  “ ok why don’t you like new people” 
  •  
  •  Anniya whispered something to David so quietly I couldn’t understand and Anniya finally responded to me “the last new person in our town killed some body” she said unbelievably bluntly. 
  •  
  •  “what?!” i screamed, “oh my god” 
  •  
  •  Anniya seemed more conferrable with me after my reaction to hearing about murder, she now spoke without looking like she was ready to tackle me “ any way what is your name?” 
  •  
  •  I started to laugh, I’d forgotten about the whole introducing my self thing “ I’m Safina Dupont.” 
  •  
  •  “ oh you’re the new people in the Dupont house” 
  •  
  •  she suddenly relaxed and her and David walked a bit closer to me “thats so awesome our parents knew the people who used to live there I think they were probably friends with your… parents?” 
  •  
  •  she seemed so questioning like I was royalty, as if I had a social standing just out of reach and if she said the wrong thing I would banish her, I wasn’t used to that I was used to within 30 seconds of meeting someone, seeing the inside of my own locker, she gave me power, the power I’d allowed my self to give to bullies, and I didn’t like it “ oh umm I guess my dad and my aunt maybe” 
  •  
  •  I was trying to be nonchalant to make her feel comfortable, but it only seemed to make her more stressed, maybe she thought I didn’t like her or something? “ that’s really cool that you play foot ball I used to play soccer at my old school”  
  •  
  • “ oh!”  
  •  
  • she looked surprised but I couldn’t quite tell by what. “ you noticed,  I love foot ball we have a stupidly small team and can only afford to play one game a season but were really good”  
  •  
  • “ she’s right they are” David chimed in. 
  •  
  •  “ oh do you play too David?” 
  •  
  •  he raised an eyebrow at me almost as if I’d asked the dumbest thing he’d ever heard the gestured at his paint splattered jeans “ I’m to busy with my art to play foot ball” his voice was still shaking a little bit . 
  •  
  • “ oh that’s really cool” I said “I’m not nearly talented enough to draw”  
  •  
  • “ oh it’s really not that hard” he seemed to be blushing. 
  •  
  •  I guess he didn’t get a lot of complements “ oh he’s just being modest he’s amazing at art” Anniya seemed to be standing up for him against, well no one. 
  •  
  •  maybe he got teased for his art? I could relate a bit to that, I just wish I had a twin who would stand up for me. Suddenly Anniya spoke up “ hey do you want us to show you around” 
  •  
  •  “ okay that would be great”  
  •  
  • I beamed at her she seemed so welcoming now, I did not at all feel like I was about to be tackled. 
  •  
  •  She pointed and talked like a tour guide at first, pointing from where we stood to all the important buildings, although there didn’t seem to be very many buildings, important or otherwise 
  •  
  •  “ ok so here is the general store” she started walking up the steps 
  •  
  •  “ hey a weird question Anniya but why are there bullet holes in the porch?” 
  •  
  •  she started laughing “ oh my god that’s such a weird story, but those aren’t bullet holes. The high school is really famous for their track team Davids on high jump I’m on the 1500 meter and 200 meter run, everyone has to participate it’s the only sport other teams come here to play against us, any ways, one time our javelin team one by  A LOT and they stared celebrating like crazy and started having a contest about who had the most accurate shot. no one was in the genral store so they started using the post on the veranda as a target that’s what the holes are and why all the windows are broken!” she told the story so comically and animated I started laughing, so did David. 
  •  
  •  “ besides” she said 
  •  
  •  “ this place has the best ice cream in the world, you need to try it” so we walked inside “hi john” she said happily to the cashier “ 3 of the usual” 
  •  
  •  “alright” he said 
  •  
  •  and passed her 3 cones with pale purple ice cream, and she turned to me “try it” I must have looked nervous “I promise it’s good”  
  •  
  • And after she handed john a few coins, we all walked outside  and down the front steps, I cautiously licked at the ice cream “wow ok, you were right Anniya this is awesome!” I said. 
  •  
  • and I wasn’t lying it tasted like blackberry with a bit of vanilla and some type of herb like maybe basil? it may sound weird, but it was awesome. After that no one said much, We all just walked and attempted awkwardly at small talk. then David spoke; it was surprising his voice wasn’t shaking and he sounded suddenly confident “ok i need to show you this if your new here”  
  •  
  • And then  ran into a stand of trees I looked at Anniya and she looked just as confused as I did but we followed we ran for at least 10 minutes I saw houses and a few smaller stores when we were near the main road but deeper into the woods there was nothing. 
  •  
  •  suddenly he stopped at a gate, a sign hung off it,  it read “private property” in big red letters Anniya looked over at David “hey uh David this just sort of looks like a fence and uh I don’t think we can go in” 
  •  
  •  “your right, we can’t but she can” and he pointed at me. 
  •  
  •   I must have looked super confused cause he pointed at some fine print “property of Dupont family” Anniya looked confused and just shrugged at me, like, do you understand what’s happening, sadly I didn’t, so we all jumped over the low fence. 
  •  
  •  “how do you even know about this place if its private property” Anniya asked skeptically.  
  •  
  •  David smiled “well uhh I used to help Mr. Dupont set up his computer and one day a landscape painting fell out of my bag he said it was good but I told him I needed something else to paint because well…l… I’ve painted everything in this town so he told me I could come back here, and paint this”  
  •  
  • as he said that the trees parted and we were standing at a lake; it wasn’t your ordinary lake either, this was emerald green and yet the water was so perfectly clear could see every detail of the bottom. I could here a little waterfall and the sound of little animals, squirrels or something scuffling around, Anniya looked like she was I shock and just stood there smiling as the two of us looked down into the crystal-clear water. 
  • “ David” Anniya paused, like she was still deciding on her emotions  “ why didn’t you bring me here sooner?!?” her voice was weird, like she was laughing and getting a tiny bit mad. 
  •  
  •  David frowned, clearly not understanding her expression better then I was “ I really wanted to” he said  “ but he only let me come back here a few times and said I couldn’t bring anyone” 
  •  
  •  I stared off into  the lake I must have looked concerned  because Anniya sked me what was wrong “ oh” I said “ I guess I don’t Remember hearing about my grandpa being so strict” 
  •  
  •  David looked super confused “ he was never strict we would let me go where ever I wanted in his house” 
  •  
  •  “ then why wouldn’t he let you back here?” Anniya asked. I was squinting against the sun at this one point where there was something across the lake but for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what the heck it was, as the two of them talked, this weird structure drew me in, I was hyper focused on the one point. 
  •  
  •  now I’m not an impulsive person but I just took off running down the lake shore, something about the object just made me curious. I was jumping over logs and boulders I’d already cut myself in a few million places but I kept going. 
  •  
  •  it was cold and the wind was whipping my hair around my face, I looked back only to see Anniya a few feet behind me apparently she didn’t mind running towards nothing at all either. I’d ran so fast I was nearly at the opposite side of the lake and i darted into the forest I’d only ran 100 meters or so and I stopped dead in my tracks. 
  •  
  •  It wasn’t a mirage, it wasn’t a deformed tree, but that didn’t mean I knew what it was. 
  • We’d come to a clearing  there were no more trees the clearing was dark and cold the air was still, I looked down at the grass and there was a small pile of bricks and charred wood, that’s when I noticed the size of the clearing as I walked deeper the fog rolled in gray and thick, what looked like the burnt foot print of a building  appeared through the fog; I walked into the center. 
  •  
  •  the ground was covered in bricks and charcoal even though we’d ran a good 5 minutes I could still hear the lake echoing through the trees.  it got colder the deeper I walked into the clearing I looked back over my shoulder Anniya was following me, walking along almost cat like swerving around bricks and gracefully jumping over  charred 2 by 4’s. 
  •  
  •  through the thick trees I could barely see David standing on the beach trying to see us, finally I saw it, the thing I’d seen from the other side of the lake it was a building! 
  •  
  •  It was small maybe only a story tall and one side of it was burned, but it looked mainly intact Anniya must have seen it to because she gasped “ what is that.” 
  •  
  •  I turned around “how should I know I’ve only been here for like an hour” I paused “oh no, I told my parents I would just be out exploring the grounds for a few minutes!” I hit my palm to my forehead. 
  •  
  •  suddenly David broke through the tree and I could see his outline in the fog “ you are technically exploring the grounds of you house” he said sarcastically. 
  •  
  •  I mean he wasn’t wrong “ but still I should go” I paused “ David… how do I get back?” 
  •  
  •  he sighed and reluctantly said “ follow me” at first I though he didn’t like me but then I realized, he wasn’t ready to leave the burnt building yet he had questions that needed answers “ what if we meet here tomorrow?” I suggested “ it is Saturday tomorrow” Anniya chimed in “ ok lets do it” and as Davids words rung throughout the clearing I knew we’d made a promise we weren’t going to be aloud to break. 

 

My plan for presenting my project. 

So, I plan on doing a few things for presenting my project, since it’s not really something I could take a video of (like an art project.) so I have decided to do several things to try and show how much I’ve learned. first, I will post my book summarized in a sentence, which is something I discussed with my mentor at our last meeting ‘summarizing your whole story and characters in a single sentence can be quite difficult, but it is worth it because you can easily explain the basic concepts of your story to the potential audience’ (quote Michelle, my mentor.) I will also be posting some of my favorite lines and scenes (without giving spoilers for the book.) such as jokes or statements that I am most proud of myself for writing or scenes that include lots of detail and well show case the skills I have learned for adding detail (adding detail was one of my original big goals.) I hope the people reading my learning center will be able to see a few things 1. How much I’ve enjoyed writing my novel, I hope that if someone who has always considered writing a novel, but has never started goes through my in-depth post and sees some of the techniques I’ve discussed they might consider starting a novel, it has been a really fun experience that I’ve learned a lot of skills through. 2. I want people to see some of the behind the scenes of writing a novel, when I started this, I had no idea the amount of research that goes not only into researching different writing styles but that goes into creating a believable relm. My novel does have elements of time travel and I have put a fair amount of time into researching the past to try and make the time travel element more believable (the reader should have to suspend disbelief on the fact that it’s magic, not on how people acted in the past.)  I do think that what goes into writing a novel would be an interesting thing to see and I hope others find it interesting as well.  

For the interactive part of my presentation, I plan on turning one of my chapters into a chose your own adventure, with an assortment of endings, it will probably only take people a few minutes to click through and will act as a good introduction to my characters. 

 

 

Concepts. 

concept that has become relatively apparent to me as I have started writing my novel is the amount that creative critique or even just general advice from other writers, amateur or professional can be extremely helpful. In our last meeting we re-visited the creative academy for writers, a website that includes masterclasses, motivational exercises and advice on writing from other writers (https://creativeacademyforwriters.com/ website link.). I have also been working on discussing my novel with my peers and classmates, several of which have taken an interest in my novel and have graciously agreed to do a peer review of my novel and have been giving my feedback on plot holes or ways to make certain areas more entertaining, easy to follow etc. As well as class mates that enjoy writing giving me general advice on how to write interesting stories. I was aware of how important the concept of asking others for advice was, but after me and my mentor discussed it I chose to be more proactive in asking others for help or advice as it’s the best way for me to grow my skills. 

 

Alternatives. 

Of course, when writing a novel there are lots of different pathways one can take; right from the beginning my mentor asked what style of narration I wanted to try and as well as listening to my idea, she suggested several other writing styles and shared their benefits. Throughout my book as I present my ideas my mentor has asked me questions about the 5W’s (who, what, when, why, where.) and has given my alternative suggestions based off what has worked in my mentors writing and what she thinks may work for my story 

If I had been in a different situation with my mentor some different alternatives, they may have given me might have been different character ideas, while my mentor did give me some advice on how to develop my characters, by the time we had our first meeting I already had the idea of my current characters very well laid out. Perhaps in different circumstances (if I hadn’t come up with the characters before our first meeting.) my mentor could have given my more alternative character ideas.  

in depth post 5

In-depth project 5 

Project type: writing a novel using first person narration. 

Big goals: write a minimum of ten chapters and however far I end up writing by march 23 should be at least 25 thousand words ( half of the minimum amount of words that a novel should be) and to have both a first draft and a second draft that includes good character development and detail for a fully immersive world. 

 

Progress report. 

Last week I had said that I wanted to minimum complete chapters 9 and 10 by next blog post for my goal of having a criteria meeting rough draft by March 23. I have started chapter 14 this week and have fully completed chapters 9-13 with a word count of approximately 31 thousand words, surpassing both of my length goals.  I have also named chapters 10-12. 

I think that the rough draft contains adequate detail “the first draft is getting your idea out on paper, the second draft is for making it look like you knew every detail and piece of plot the entire time” (quote Michelle Bettauer, my mentor). It also contains great character development and character arcs, that include reveals, backstory and character traits.  this week we switched focus a fair amount and started talking about false climax and developmental questions. a false climax is like a climax, but it happens earlier in the book and typically the antagonist wins. “ it’s like when you see a fight scene in a movie, and go wow that was so cool, that must be the end but, there’s still an hour left in the movie, and you get kind of confused because you thought that was the climax. ( quote my mentor) false climax are good for character and plot development and really help with the reader having more of an attachment to a character. 

 

Developmental questions are the who, what, when, where and how’s that you use to make laws for the magic in your fictional world, readers can suspend some disbelief but the magic does have to have boundary’s that are spelled out or at least touched upon in the novel. 

 

Frustrations and obstacles. 

I’ve really just be struggling as my book Is nearing its climaxI have multiple different ideas on what might make for an interesting climax and am having trouble deciding on which one fits best with my plot. have to clear a lot of hurdles since there are requirements with the outline of a climax and it has been a bit frustrating to figure out what I want my climax to be. 

 

Project changes. 

My project has basically stayed the same, I’ve surpassed both of my first draft goals so, I have made a new one. By the end of in-depth I want my novel to be 35 thousand words. Based off my growth of previous weeks this may not seem like a lot, but much of my focus in the coming weeks will be going in to editing and not writing new plot points. 

 

Evidence of progress, 

Chapter 2 of my book ( rough draft) 

  •  
  •                                                               Chapter 2  
  •                                          Musical interlude  
  •  
  • As we pulled out on to the high way headed north: I put in my ear buds and it drowned out the noise of the car and my parents talking a fell into my world of music.
  •  
  •  I checked my phone “no new messages” sign popped up on the screen, I quietly laughed to myself; you’ve lived in the same town your whole life yet no one even knows your gone 
  •   “funny movie kiddo” my dad asked. 

 I took out a headphone “ sure dad 

 he seemed a lot calmer now that we were on the road, maybe he was like me, indecisive till someone makes you do something, then it’s the best moment of your life, that’s why we needed my mom she ran in head first, she had moved to America by her self when she was 18! Only four years older than I was, I took comfort in that, if she could do that, I can do this. 

  •  

We drove through only forest for a long time, not passing anything other than a few rest stops, an old dinner called “the pine tree” and a  motel  that was actually called “the rest stop” with a bunch of z’s coming out of the rest on the flickering neon sign, I guess the word “rest” was asleep, 

  •  

 we’ve been on the road for what feels like hours but according to my phone had only been about 90 minutes. So, I started scrolling through old photos; most people had pictures of them and their friends by the side of a lake or at a mall, or wherever other teenage girls hung out, I had very random pictures of forests, the skyscrapers from Milwaukee and a picture of a juice bottle for some reason unknown even to myself. 

  •  

 I ran out of pictures pretty quickly but I felt cramped in the back of the carI tried to read but it made me feel sick so I tried to open a window which still did nothing, 

  •  

 I want to crawl out of my own skin just so I can move, but in this stupid hot car I felt worse and worse so, I wanted to get out and run around on the side of the road but my dad said we were on a tight schedule, what schedule!  I thought to myself, the moving truck wasn’t coming to black pine  till 8 or 9 and it was 10 am! 

  •  

 my mind started to wonder about possibility’s, maybe the neighbors were going to through us a welcome party, was that normal? I’d never moved before, I didn’t know how other people reacted, would there be chips? Because I was starving; I honestly don’t know how moving works, maybe we had to do something to set up the house before the movers got there?  

  •  

I was letting my imagination wander and as I looked out the window I started to dream about the forest, it looked so open and cool, I saw a deer poke its head out of a bush and watch our car go by, 

  •  

 we put animals in a zoos, just so that we could observe them and see them, but I wonder when animals are in the wild, do they stare at us in our cars like we’re in the zoo? 

  •  

 my mind drifted to all of my thoughts, I thought about gardens and tree houses and milkshakes.  this was when I think I started to drift off.  

  •  

I don’t really know how long I was asleep for I just know that when I woke up, it had gotten brighter out, it must have been 1 or 2 by now  , 

  •  

 I rubbed the sleep out of my eyes and squinted at something in the trees, a glittery star was hung off a branch “ hey mom?” my voice still sounded groggy “ what was in that tree 

 

 she turned around to face  me “ the star?” 

 

 “ uh huh” 

 

 “ sweety that’s to mark a drive way it’s hard to see them through the trees so people hang stuff off of the trees In front of there houses 

 

 I sat bolt upright “ are we in black pine!?” 

  •  

 she smiled “ well the out skirts at least” 

  •  

 some one might as well have glued my face to the window I wanted to see everything even if it was just a bunch more trees “ hey dad”  

  •  

“ yes” he said 

  •  

 “ how many people live here 

  •  

 “about 200” 

  •  

 “ is there a school 

  •  

 “yes” 

  •  

 “ how many students? 

  •  

” “30 ish”  

  •  

“ what does the house look like”  

  •  

“ safina we’ll be there in a few minutes, no more questions” he was clearly getting nervous,  

 

he was humming blackbirds by the Beatles he always did that when he was nervous. 

  •  

 we pasted another star about 5 minutes later, then two minutes after that then one minute after that! They were getting closer together till we hit the main road, 

  •  

 ok road was a stretch, it was dirt with no trees or brush; we pasted a few stores but nothing that looked like a house. then we pasted the school, it was about 3 minutes from the nearest store and was definitely in the middle of the forest, 

  •  

 we kept going down the dirt road until we got to a blue star on a tree, my mom checked her phone “ this is us” she said as we turned down the drive way. 

  •  

 we went for a few minutes down a winding drive way, and then I got my first glimpse of the house; it was tall and made of dark wood, it looked colonial era and had a spire on top. all of the windows were shuttered and ivy was growing up one wall, it was the only clearing in a massive forest. 

  •  

 I put my head out the  window I smelled strong pine and dirt “ this is home” said my mom, suddenly my stomach dropped, I felt like I was about to throw up, this was home we weren’t going back to Milwaukee this was where I lived now, it was the middle of nowhere, there was no super markets, no McDonalds, no high-rises. What if everyone here hated me,  I bet forest kids are rough what if they killed me, my mind was going faster than the car was, it was a like a dream as the car stopped and I grabbed my bag and went inside, it was a blur, 

  •  

 as I walked down the long entry way and up the dark spiral stairs holding the curved railing like my life depended on it; a voice broke my trance “ Saf your room’s the second on the left” my dad yelled. Ok deep breath, only a few more steps I turned and walked through the door. 

  •  

The room was made of the same wood as everything else, the rug in the middle of the room was a beautiful dark green and the bed had a canopy with dark green mosquito netting,  

  •  

light came in from the back where there was a arched green stained glass window with a pine tree in the middle as well as a large picture window, 

  •  

 I dropped my bag on the bed and walked over to it all I could see was trees I looked at the ground, first I saw a path leading away from my house the I noticed a rope ladder hanging out of my window,  good, an opportunity to just run and not be cramped anymore, 

  •  

I ran over to my backpack , ripped a piece of paper out of my note book and scribbled out a note  “ going out to explore the grounds – saf” I dropped the note on the bed and climbed out the window, down the rope ladder and started following the path.  

 

resources 

 

https://www.answers.com/Q/What_is_a_false_climax 

 A website about false climax’s. 

 

A collection of sources on writing character emotions and arcs.  

 

 

Mentor: M 

Me(carolyn): C 

 

Discussing false climax’s (some statements were slightly edited for length and clarity) 

 

White hat: I think this qualified as me using the white hat since I asked for the hard facts of using false climax’s in writing like, what’s their purpose or when should I use them.  

C: I believe the purpose of a false climax is to give the reader a taste of what’s to come later in the book, is there more to false climax then that? 

M: yes so that’s the base idea, you think it’s the big thing and then you realize There’s more to come but you can also use it to help the reader build more attachment to your character. 

C: when would I use that, when does it apply? 

M: you might use it to build tension, a few chapter before your climax.  

 

Red hat: I think I used the red hat here since I expressed my emotional interest that has come from other books/movies in using false climax’s. 

C: using false climax’s seem like a good Idea for reader attachment, I definitely want to use these in my book (here I shared the idea of what chapter in my book I would put the false climax and what it would be) 

M: yes ok I get why you would want to have a false climax there, I like this idea, that works really well for the limits of a false climax, it also speaks to your characters growth. 

Black hat  

The above mentor comment I think plays well into the black hat, we spoke about how the false climax I had decided on played into my story’s theme of trusts and plot twists. My decided on false climax both fit the values of my book and of a false climax. This was something both me and my mentor agreed on. 

 

Green hat. My mentor asked about a different solution novel design that would hit the same goals, I did bring up a few but I still plan to use the false climax. I think it fits best with my book 

M: what could you do instead of a false climax? 

C: I could try a false defeat, or moment of weakness of the characters? 

M: yes those do work. you might want to try more of a reveal, like you find out There’s a new villain 

C: ok so I could use a reveal instead? 

M: yes, this adds a new level of narrative which is often useful. 

C: that sound cool, but I think a false climax works best with the placement and character development in my novel. 

 

 

Yellow hat. I think this is an example of the yellow hat since we agreed that using false climax’s would be better for everyone’s time and was a good use of my time. 

C: I think what would make everyone’s effort worthwhile is that false climax, it could really help build a connection between the reader and the story. 

 

M: yes, this is definitely worth spending time on because as well as reader and story bonding it can really help with character growth which is very important to the story. It’s a simple tool of raising tension and stakes, its not mandatory, but a false climax is definitely worth spending time on. 

 

Blue hat. 

The total focus of our conversation was false climax’s and how useful they can be in a story to shoe characters in a new light, to allow character growth, build suspense and develop a reader character bond.