Podcasts, for those of you a little less tech savvy, are a series of audio recordings in which a group of people discuss a topic, usually with regular episodes. Often but not always, podcasts are connected to a pretty well-known website or blog. You can find them on iTunes, but they're other places too. The podcasts I list below are for free. They're all about writing, seeing as I am a writer, but one is reader-centered.
So sit back and enjoy my list of favorite podcasts, and, if you're interested, give them a try yourself!
Book Riot: The Podcast
Book Riot is a website I follow for book fans, writers, and editors that discusses all kinds of issues in the literary world as well as different books that have recently come out in all areas. It covers a lot of content and all of it is very well-written and usually quite engaging. Their podcast is run by two of the writers for the site, and it's a weekly podcast covering all the most recent book news. The podcasts run on the long side, from an hour to an hour and a half, but they're brilliant, enjoyable, and thorough.
The most recent podcast from them, from this Sunday, was #50: Recommendations for Moms, Dads, and Grads, a special 50th podcast recommending books for the upcoming holidays this season! If you're a dedicated reader or writer, I'd absolutely give this podcast a shot. Look up Book Riot in podcasts on iTunes to subscribe!
Today, I present an interview with my online writing friends!
I met these girls online through the Scholastic Write It! boards, a discussion community for young writers, which I joined when I was thirteen. A number of the great people I met there continued to be my friends even after I left the boards, and, although I've never met them in person, I admire and love these girls so much! We Skype a lot, and Facebook, and e-mail, and they just brighten every day of my existence with their humor, support, and kindness, as well as their great help with my writing. Some of them no longer write themselves, but we still all have a great appreciation for writing and for literature.
I seriously cannot express in words how much I love these girls. I don't know what I'd do without them.
In today's interview, we've got Julia, Hero, Madelynn, and Molly, answering some questions for me.
Do you remember your first impression of me? Please elaborate.
Julia: While I'm not sure if it was my FIRST first impression, the first thing I remember thinking about you was that I hated your guts. Because I was (literally) an immature, self-conscious thirteen year old, and you were a brilliant writer and knew so much about the publishing industry and everyone loved you. (But then I got over myself, because, like. It's a truth universally acknowledged that you cannot NOT like Kira.)
One of the things me and my writing friends like to do is peruse ModCloth, which is a online fashion retail full of all kinds of unique clothing, mostly based off of vintage fashion. Often, we look through it to try and find the worst possible dresses and outfits we can. However, ModCloth has got some truly incredible clothes as well, especially dresses, and often, I find myself coveting something on their site. Most of their clothes, however, are really expensive, so I'm never going to get any of these pretty dresses.
Just to indulge myself, though, I've created a wishlist on which I put any ModCloth items that catch my fancy, so I can pretend that they're within my reach. So today, as a sort of fashion fun post, I thought I'd share with you my wishlist. Enjoy!
*For more great Modcloth clothes, read this post.*
Today I thought it might be interesting just to talk about the nature of BYU-Idaho, in terms of it being a religious school. Obviously, I attended regular public school before college, and then I went to Adams State, which was a public college, so I've got a comparison, and I think the differences are kind of interesting.
Because BYU-I is a privately funded religious school, all the rules about separation of church from your education no longer apply. Because it's focused around Mormonism, naturally, there is a lot of talk about religion and Mormonism in all the classes and in events and in social spheres and just everywhere.
When I first started classes at BYU-I, this really threw me off. Obviously, to a certain extent, I had expected this. I knew that almost everyone would be Mormon, like me. I knew it would thus be a topic of casual conversation. Clearly, I knew about the Honor Code. I knew about the religious class requirements. What I didn't expect was how deeply intertwined and intrinsic religion would be to the structure of all the classes, the events, and the school itself.
The first week, maybe even the first month, of school, this was really confusing and kind of uncomfortable for me. I was taking six classes. One was a religion class, centered around the Book of Mormon. The others were all regular classes. But in Science Foundations, we started off by learning a) about how science and religion correlate and b) about Mormon scientists. In American Foundations, we began with statements of scriptures and prophets relating to how government should properly be structured, freedom of choice, human rights, etc. In lit class, the teacher began by saying that every piece of literature we read would, in some way, bring us closer to the Savior. In orchestra, we prayed every day to be able to bring the Spirit through our playing.
Probably most of the people who read this blog right now are quite close to me, so none of this is going to come as a surprise. Nonetheless, I'd like to give this update on an official capacity, for those who don't know and for anyone in the future. I imagine you've been wondering why I've not said much about BYU-Idaho, like I'd said I would, or much about my recent personal life at all, actually. The answer is because I've been dealing with some stuff that I didn't feel comfortable talking about on here yet, but now I'm ready.
So here we go.
I arrived at BYU-Idaho on January 3rd. BYU-Idaho has a three-track system, meaning it's got a Fall, Winter, and Spring semester as well as a brief Summer session, and every student is assigned two semesters to attend yearly. I'm Winter/Spring, which is why I started in January.
Classes began on January 6th, without too much trouble. I was immediately bored by most my classes, which were mostly beginning, gen-eds that I have to take to make up for the transfer and all, but otherwise I was pretty okay. Very quickly, though, within that first week, it became clear that I was not doing well.
Those of you who are close to me or who have been keeping up with the blog for a while are aware that I've never had very stable mental health, and I've swung between anxiety and depression my entire life. This came to a head my second semester at college, before I decided to transfer to BYU-Idaho, when I had an emotional breakdown that put me in counseling. I did well in counseling, but over the summer, I had a second breakdown, and this one was worse. This is partially because of the lack of mental resources available both in New Mexico and in my hometown itself. At the worst point, I was suffering from anxiety bad enough that I couldn't leave the house without having a panic attack. With help from the few friends who stuck around, my family, and some church members, I managed to get through that. I knew once I got to BYU-Idaho, I would be able to get real (and free) counseling through the school, like I did at Adams State, and that tided me over.
Today marks the end of my first semester at BYU-Idaho, and I'm quite happy for that! I think that, for all y'all's enjoyment, I'm going to write today about being an adult.
Recently, the idea of adulthood has been on my mind, possibly because I just turned twenty, possibly because I'm at college, possibly for a whole ton of other reasons. The twenty thing is a big part of it, though. Legally, of course, you're an adult at 18, but very few people would actually consider you "adult" at 18. Twenty, on the other hand, is a big number, two decades on the earth, the passage out of teenagerhood. And if you're too old to be a teenager, what does that make you? Well, I imagine, an adult.
The thing is, though, I really don't feel like an adult, so the thought of being qualified as one not just legally but socially is pretty daunting. It's like I'm sitting here waving my arms in the air, like, "Wait! I haven't gained the quality of adultness! I need it! Help me!"
That, of course, brings up the question of what that quality of "adultness" is that I'm missing. So I spent a while thinking about this last night. It's not age, experience, or education, because I have a pretty decent allotment of all of these. So when is it that I feel the least adult?
The answer is around other people. I look at all these people, people older than me, people my age, even a good number of people younger than me, and I'm like, "What the heck? You're taken more seriously than me. You're cooler than me. You know what's up more than I do. Look how mature and smart you are!"
Today Ellana Rose Thornton-Wheybrew, a writer of short fiction and poetry, is guest posting on the topic of classic literature. This is a topic I've covered only briefly before, and I'm happy to share this post. You can check out more of Ellana's writing at her website. Another pretty good blog to follow for thoughts on classic literature is my friend Hero's blog, so give it a look too if you're interested!
What are your favorite classics?
Thanks for checking in, guys, and please do come back next time for a post on adulthood!
Like most people, I had to read “the classics” as a part of studying English Literature at school. I guess, like most people, I hated them. Jane Eyre was dull and predictable; most of the Shakespeare plays bored me to tears; even the “modern classics” were awful. I hated having to praise the writing skills of authors that did not interest me.
Do not get me wrong, I loved reading then just as much as I do now. I could recite The Raven and Tennyson’s In Memoriam at will and my favourite poets included Byron, Poe, Tennyson, and Barrett Browning. The works I had to study, especially the modern ones, barely interested me. The writers of centuries long gone fascinated me.
I started with what I loved, namely Edgar Allen Poe, and worked outwards. I devoured the works of Ann Radcliffe, finding a beauty in her words from the 1790s in the same way my teachers would preach about the beauty they could see in the books we were studying. I found a beauty in the words of authors that practically no one had even heard about, and in all honesty it felt like my little secret.
Well, guys, today, besides being our April humor post, is my 20th birthday! I am now officially not a teenager, and kinda freaked out about that. 20 is a nice number, though, when you think of it objectively. Clean and even. Twenty 20 twenty 20. So there's that.
Anyway, enjoy your humor post, and come back next time for a guest post by one of my readers!
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