Last time looking at this piece of technology before graduation.
I recently made a list of things that I hope to accomplish this year, no not a list of resolutions but a list of simple goals that I believe will bring me long term results. Some of the things on my list are health related, there are a few things I’d like to do here at Auburn before I graduate, some of the goals are job related (as in get one!), and then there are those things that I think will help me to just be a better me.
I’ve been learning so much in my capstone course about technical communication, and I am thrilled because graduation is looming closer each day and I feel that I am in a place where I have a strong foundation of knowledge and skills that to offer any employer. With that being said I don’t want to ever lose touch of my creative side. I write everyday, as I promised myself that I would, but I have also taken a strong interest in photography recently. I have taken courses in which I have had to design websites and manuals, and all sorts of things and I always see the phtography that I use and think “wow I wish that I could do that!”
So I have decided to take my little digital camera (it’s nothing fancy), or my phone, and do the 30-day gratitude photo challenge. Unlike most of the other photo challenges that I have seen, this one isn’t about me. This challenge doesn’t ask me to take a single image of myself, and will allow me to explore photography and to expand my ability to think outside of the box. Why do it? Because above all of the things on my list I want to stop wishing I could do things and just do them. Everyday I will take a photo and post it here. No matter how good or bad the quality of the photo.
I apologize in advance.
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Tagged 30-day photo challenge, accomplishments, camera, creativity, design, explore, Goals, graduation, images, photography, pictures, try something new
Today in my capstone course Aaron Alford, the Managing Editor for Southern Humanities magazine, came to speak to the class. Southern Humanities is the quarterly, literary, journal staffed by graduate students based right here in my beloved Auburn University, and until today I had no idea it existed. (That last statement isn’t entirely true, I had heard of the journal in passing but I didn’t really know much about it.)
Mr. Alford offered advice on everything from following your dreams of editing literature, to how he got started. The discussion was something that I very much needed to hear. Everyday I get just a little bit closer to graduation and the closer the day gets the more stressed out I become.
I appreciated the talk that Mr. Alford gave today. He mentioned different experiences that he has had working for Southern Humanities and I found comfort in the fact that I have had some of the same encounters working for the Circle. The biggest takeaway that I got from today’s talk was to be confident going out into the workforce.
Most people don’t really understand my major or what I can and intend to do with it. Everyone usually tries to persuade me to pursue something more “practical” a technical writing job to follow my technical writing degree.
That’s exactly what I’m doing people!
The day to day for a technical writer/editor might seem dull to you when I explain that in a job I will codify information and write and or edit it for the consumption of an audience, but that is exactly what I plan to do. I work with all forms of writing technical and otherwise. What I have learned over the years is that people don’t typically associate non-technical writing with monetary success, unless of course the writer in question is on a bestsellers list. There is the starving writer character, such as portrayed by Bradley Cooper in The Words that struggles to make ends meet that I can see pop into the mind of a person when I tell them what I do. That reaction can be discouraging, especially when it comes from those who are already secured in their careers. Mr. Alford was the opposing voice today, telling us to trust our capabilities as writers, and assuring us that they are not only sufficient but highly seemed after in the professional world.
The point is not every young writer/editor struggles to find work. I am confident that my skills in technical writing and editing will lead to success, and thanks to Mr. Alford I can stress a little less and focus on graduation and applying for positions. Maybe it’s corny but the follow your dreams talk is one that I firmly believe that everyone should hear, especially those of us who are just leaving the comforts of college.
Today was a good day.
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Tagged Aaron Alford, advice, Auburn University, creative writing, dreaming equals doing, graduate, graduation, Jobs, Life lessons, literary magazine, SHR, Southern Humanities Review, stressful, work, Writing, Writing and Editing
With graduation looming closer and closer everyday, this week I have made it my mission to reach out to people who hold job positions that I would like to one day have the privilege of holding myself. This afternoon, as I wrote letters and questions to ask these people I found myself becoming sidetracked. I have to admit, I did find myself veering off to Facebook once or twice but what really stole my attention were the multiple opportunities that I found to complete Artist residencies. Artist you ask, like drawing? I draw, not well enough to make a living off of, but the opportunities weren’t just for that sort of artist. There are organizations that provide days and weeks of training to people looking to better perfect their craft. Artsmith for example offers an up to four week residency where artists can write, paint, and sketch their hearts out on Washington State’s San Juan Island. Yes I did just imply that a writer is an artist, because we are! This lavish residency might sound more like a retreat or vacation but the truth is I think it is, the best vacation ever! Think about it, doing what you love and at the same time getting things accomplished, in a beautiful and relaxing setting. Sounds amazing right?
Like most of my fellow senior students, I have been stressing over finding a job, and making connections in preparation for graduation. I have been emailing editors, researching publishing companies, and in doing so have neglected to do the one thing that well makes me, me. Going through Brevity and Rock & Sling reading all of the amazing works reminded me that the one big success that I hope to one day achieve is to write something worthy of publication. I don’t really have the luxury of being able to attend such a retreat as the one offered by Artsmith, so as hinted at by the very cheesy title of this post, I have resolved to take out a minute of every day to write something for me. Of course a novel can’t be written in a single minute but dedicating myself to at least a minute of personal writing everyday will form a habit that I hope to carry with me long after I graduate and get a job, and that is to never stop working towards achieving my dreams in writing.
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Tagged Adulthood, artist, Artsmith, Brevity magazine, Dreams, english, Goals, graduation, Jobs, Residency, responsibilities, retreat, Rock & Sling, stress, Vacation, Writer, Writing
I’ve been told, as I am sure we all have, that growing up is hard. Suddenly you are responsible for keeping the power on, and paying rent, and buying groceries. These things that, for years, had all been taken care of by someone else are suddenly your responsibility. They, those older and wiser people that we thought had no idea what they were talking about for many of our young years, tell us to try to stay a child as long as we can because being an adult can really be tuff sometimes.
What they don’t always tell us is that one of THE hardest parts of growing up is watching people pass in and out of your life. When I was a freshman I was lucky enough to meet a really great group of people. We had a pretty big group and did almost everything together. By the second semester of my freshman year it became pretty obvious that not everyone that was in the group would stay in the group. But that was okay because those of us that continued to hang out realized how much we really valued each other’s friendship. I am still friends with two of those girls today and I am so happy that I met them and got to experience college with them. But one of those girls graduated last May and the other will graduate in this coming December, whereas I will not graduate until May 2015.
We are all headed in separate directions and while we promise to keep in touch, the fact is that more often than not, people in our situations eventually lose touch. People get married, and have children, and life just happens. My best friend and I have been really talking about our future plans lately because this is my last year at the university. I plan to try to find a job in Atlanta after school and then hopefully someday in New York City. She doesn’t plan on leaving the state. And while I am happy that she has possibly found that someone, I would be lying if I said that the thought of all of that change didn’t scare me. When you have a person in your life that you see everyday, and that knows you better than anyone in the world, and gets your odd sense of humor, and shamelessly gushes over a tv show with you it’s hard to think of not being around them anymore.
I consider myself lucky to have already met so many wonderful people, and to have gotten to learn from them and experience great friendships. But, for me, the hardest part of growing up has been learning to accept the fact that people come and go in your life, and that you just have to enjoy the time that you have with them and be grateful that you had that time. Change is a good thing. And who knows, maybe someday I will be in New York City celebrating my bestseller and my friends will be right there by my side.