highschoolno nina is definitely girlcrush territory <3 i love talking to her about tv shows and research, and she’s so sweet and funny and adorable and i feel like she really empathizes with me in terms of our passions and desires for the future and ahhh she is fave and should 100% come visit me in chicago *winkwinknudgenudge* good luck with your senior year, lovely! ^_^
thepolygonalpolymath OKAY FIRST OF ALL HER FOOD BLOG IS JUST GOD BLESS <3 idk she was actually one of my first followers, and it was super nice seeing a fellow intel semifinalist in this corner of tumblr ^__^ lulu’s so intelligent and has such an incredible sense of humor, and she’s going to have an absolutely amazing time at stanford :)
WHOA jekyll-and-hyde-park you’re an intel semifinalist too?!? does that make three of us or?#jekyll-and-hyde-park
easier than you would think!! being good at writing is such a subjective thing but in my opinion all that makes a writer “good” is complete and total honesty. not that everything you write must be honest, but just that the way you write is 100% you and you’re not lying about who you are and you’re not ashamed to be that person. i have never been to writing camp or writing class and i only started taking advanced english classes halfway through high school because i was lazy before but i still think i’m a decent writer for a high school student, i’m not flashy with the words i use and i’m definitely not amazing but i think i have a pretty clear voice and i think i sound like a relatively approachable and down-to-earth person, which if you know me at all is exactly the way i want to come across, so in that right i do think i’ve been successful. and if we’re following ~the libby guide for finding your voice~ there are only 2 steps all must take:
1) read. in order to like writing i firmly believe you must like reading. i actually talk to my parents about this all the time, we have a few family friends who are my/my brother’s age and they absolutely despise reading yet they say they like to write and we’re all just ????? because that makes no sense to us. i feel like to fully comprehend the beauty and complexity of words you have to see them wielded by other people as well, you have to be able to differentiate voices and styles and you have to accept that there’s room for you to grow. and you just can’t do that without reading. i really think that anyone who hates to read just hasn’t found the right book. and it doesn’t have to be a classic or ~acceptable~ book like no one expects you to lug “war and peace” around before they take you seriously. there is no book that leaves you worse off than when you found it. you can learn from anything. and the best kinds of books are ones you feel a kinship with and sometimes they stay with you,because a writer’s voice is original in that it is borrowed, it’s an amalgamation of everything they’ve ever read, ever learned, and the more you expose yourself to these sources the better off you’ll be. read. and read a lot. and read different things, read magazines and nonfiction and sci-fi and young adult and contemporary and try them on like you’re in the fitting room of a department store and see if you can find something that fits. and take that with you.
2. write. just as an athlete needs to hone their skill, so do you. and writing is cool because even though yes, some people may be more naturally inclined writers, writing can be a taught skill. you don’t need any physical inclinations nor do you even need ~interesting~ experiences (a common fallacy believed by many). in my opinion the mark of a good writer is their ability to make you see the world differently. i know you said you don’t often write for fun, but writing often, about a myriad of topics, is really the best way to improve and learn about yourself and your voice. i know you may be busy and so may not have time to sit down at the computer and open up a word doc and get cracking. but if i’m out and i experience something, anything, like maybe i just came back from a fun day at the mall or i’m at school and my mind is wandering and i’m creating my own daydream so vivid i could step into it or i just like the way the sky is clear and sunny and i want to preserve the moment, i take out my phone and i jot it down in my notes. i’m looking at it right now and i have over fifty and some are happy, like what i described above, but some are sad and some are angry and some are laden with anxiety because i do this thing sometimes where i get nervous but i can’t find the root of it so i just write and write and it makes me feel like i’m digging and hoping to strike gold. and sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, but i always feel better. the thing about writing is that it’s the ultimate form of creation. you are making something out of nothing, you are reaching into your brain and fashioning it into something that other people can understand. and the more you write the more you’ll notice these little idiosyncrasies that will begin to define you as a writer- like for me, i’m a big advocate of the artistic run-on. i can go for days powered only with the strength of a comma because i like the idea that it’s a conversation, that i’m speaking into your ear never ceasing, only ebbing and flowing like the tide. i think that’s really nice. and i use a lot of water metaphors as well. if you write, if you take it upon yourself to write just for the sake of writing, not for any personal gain, you will begin to look at the world like an unfolding story, you will be able to judge things analytically from both sides, your speech will be more thoughtful (because what is speech but just writing come to life?), you will be able to interpret yourself and your own feelings better than before, and you will achieve more self-esteem and self-confidence because don’t we all want something that’s uniquely ours? writing, for me, is the one place where i’m honest and comfortable with being myself, i never have to pretend, i can write for ten straight lines without even a semicolon and even if i’m the only one who reads it (which i usually am) it’s proof that i’ve existed and proof that i’m unique and yet i’m not alone. i still wouldn’t call myself a writer in the socially acceptable sense but it comes as naturally as breathing, something i can hold onto like an anchor when i’m afraid of floating away. just write, and write often. don’t even do it for college, or scholarships, or anything like that. being comfortable communicating and having an ease with words will be useful for the rest of your life.