Me, the Fan

My writer seminar was done on Nicholas Sparks and it has taught me to keep an open mind when picking new things to read. I learned that even if you fail, it doesn’t mean you won’t/can’t become successful. For anyone who didn’t know, Nicholas Sparks failed English when he was younger but now has published many novels and even have turned some novels into motion pictures. Others’ writers seminars also inspired me through the advice that was given. They also were helpful for me to see if I liked a certain writer, because it gave me snippet of their style of writing.

By studying published authors, it has help change my writing by inspiring me to emulate styles of writers that resonate with me. The advice that some of the authors have given have definitely helped to improve my writing too, and will continue to help improve my writing throughout my high school career.

For my writer seminar, I chose to do Nicholas Sparks with my partner Jazmine. We chose him because neither of us have read his novels but have heard a lot about them. Nicholas Sparks is mainly known for writing romance novels, but not the typical love stories that everyone else writes. The book we read was called The Notebook and the style was very unique. It was a story about a man telling his wife who has Alzheimer’s about their story, an approach that really caught my attention because it was something different. Some other novels he wrote were Safe Haven, The Last Song and many others. What I learnt from Nicholas Sparks is that if you put real emotions into the novel, it can hook your readers and catch their attention. I also learned that it’s okay to write out of order, and that you have to practice writing good stories to make good stories. I emulated an excerpt from his novel, click here to read more about my writers seminar and to read my emulation.

Another writer seminar that really inspired me was Heather and Anusha’s author. I learned that writing isn’t a one time thing, and that you won’t get the perfect story on the first try. You also need to find the word you are trying to use to get your point across rather than adding fluff and beating around the bush – keeping things simple will ensure you don’t stray from your main point. After their presentation, I am going to find time to read a Mark Twain novel, such as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.  As for Nicholas Spark novels, I want to read The Last Song.

Heather and Anusha’s Prezi:

My prezi:

Me the Writer, Blogger, and Student

Me, the Writer: What is my writing identity? That’s a good question. After blogging, I found that my identity is different and unique from others. I wrote about emotions and personal stories which set my writing aside from everyone else’s. As far as development as a writer goes, I feel like I have grown as a writer. Although I have only grown a little bit and still have a long ways to go to become an even better writer, in posting blog posts throughout this semester, I have learnt new ways and styles to write. I learned how to write new styles of poems like adagem poems, spinal poetry, and black out poetry. I learned how to emulate other writer’s work and how to incorporate my own style into it. If I had to explain my voice I’d say everything that I write, comes from the heart. Everything has a story behind it; comes with real emotions. My style of writing is simple, I connect with my readers through pathos and ethos. As a mentor writer, I would give future creative writers the advice to write not to please others but to please yourself. As a writer, you should write what you are passionate about, write about what inspires you. If you get writer’s block and need a boost, just stop and take a break and do something creative like write a silly poem.


Me, the Blogger: As a blogger, I’ve grown a lot. I started off the semester with no knowledge of how a blog works, no ideas to write about, and always struggling to come up with the 350 minimum word count. I used to post only one or two pictures within a blog and would take a long time to finish one post. Now that the semester is over, I feel that my blog better than it was at the start. It shows how much I’ve grown as a blogger and a writer. After this course, I will try to post some blogs every now and then whenever inspiration hits me. I plan to continue following Heather, Jashan, and Anusha’s blog if they so choose to continue posting. Also, every now and then I will want to check out Hunni’s Writers 2 to see if anyone else posts anything, because who knows, maybe it could spark some inspiration.


Me, the Student: My “Aha” moment in Creative Writing was Sarah Kay and spoken word poetry. I loved watching her videos of her spoken word poetry. There was something about her words that really stuck out to me. Her work blew my mind away every time someone showed me a new and different spoken word poem that she did. I had my “Aha” moment when Ms. Hunnisett used Sarah Kay as a demo to introduce emulation writing, and after seeing a video of the spoken word, I was hooked. On a different note, as a reader I haven’t accomplished as much as I would like. So far I have only read 3 books this semester. My plan is to read The Bean Trees, or A Thousand Splendid Suns. As a writer, I am still finding my strengths and weaknesses and working on writing without overthinking about the task at hand. I plan to write a “free choice” on my blog sometime soon, and then in the next semester I will continue writing essays in class.

Critic of my own Work

This semester was truly like none other. I was able to go on a journey with my writing through my blog posts, and got to try new techniques to improve my writing skills. Posting throughout the semester, I was able to capture the difference of each piece of writing and where I got inspiration for each piece. To show what I mean, I will take you on the journey of 4 pieces of my writing.

1) Staying Young Forever – This was my very first blog post and the significance behind the title was simply to show the idea of never having to grow up. In this piece, one of the main themes is childhood and how it connects to my life. The purpose of this was to reflect on the idea of how society says you need to grow up to be grown up, compared to how I have made my childhood carry on for 17, going on to 18 years. This piece was written more as a reflection on how fast life goes by in my life and how I can grow up without giving up my childhood permanently. The audience that I was aiming for was towards high school students or adults who simply can relate to how I feel about always wishing for “the good old days” to become a daily thing and for “growing up” to not happen as quickly. The thought of graduation and university applications triggered inspiration within me, and that’s how this piece was written. I put this piece together in paragraphs, each paragraph being a different thought that went through my head at the time of writing this. For example, I transitioned from ,”  I just wanted to stay young for as long as I possibly could; I wanted nothing more than an ever-lasting childhood,” at the end of paragraph two and came to the realization of how I am still very much a child and wrote, ” Maybe that’s the reason why, to this day, I’m still a child. I’m a child, trapped in the body of a teenage girl with no way to escape.” It’s cool to see how just one thought of childhood and not wanting to grow up, could manifest into such a cool blog post showing my every thoughts at that exact time. I remember specifically, in writing this blog post, that I struggled for quite some time in choosing what to write about. I remember coming up with multiple ideas but having to restart because I wouldn’t be able to get past 50 words. It wasn’t until I complained to one of my friends about how I wished I was still 5 years old, when the wheels in my head started turning. I revised it 4 or 5 times after I got feedback from my friends who were able to take a look at it. And after that, I had my first blog post.


2) Functioning on Empty – This next blog post we’re going to look at, was my fourth post of the semester. The significance behind the name of the title was from true emotions that I had been feeling around that time. Sometimes when you feel overwhelmed with everything that happens, you will find everything and everyone else annoying. The purpose of me writing this piece was to let out everything I had kept bottled up inside, and I thought that it would be a piece that other people who felt overwhelmed could easily relate to. What influenced me to write this was directly from how I was feeling at the time, I had reached a point where I felt like I was done with everything and couldn’t handle anything anymore. I crafted this through the stylistic choice of writing as if we inside my head; kind of like a narrative, as if I were telling a story.  For example, the first line of this post was, “I collapsed on my bed, as I heaved a big sigh and draped my hands over my eyes.” This line shows what was going on in my mind but also could be interpreted as a narrative story. I found it very easy to write because everything I had to say was coming from the heart. I didn’t make too many revisions once I finished writing it, however I still made some minor tweaks here and there after my friends got a chance to read over it. Overall, I thought writing this helped me relieve my feelings that I had kept to myself and after posting I found myself feeling a lot better.

3) Emulation Writing – The significance of the title was because we were emulating different writer’s style of writing. The main idea behind mimicking another writer’s style, was to enable us to grow creatively as writers. The purpose behind this was to allow our minds to think more creatively and to let us try out different styles to see if we liked a certain style of writing. There wasn’t really a specific audience that I was trying to write for because as mentioned before, this was to see if we liked a different style of writing. My inspiration was Ernest Hemmingway’s poem “Advice to a Son,” and from babysitting little kids all under the age of 5.  I simply followed the structure of his poem but replaced his words with mine and made a poem by using his style of writing. For example, the first part of Hemmingway’s poem was, ” Never trust a white man, Never kill a Jew, Never sign a contract, Never rent a pew.” However, for my poem I wrote, ” Never throw a tantrum, Never Raise your voice, Never leave your toys out, Always make the right choice.” Originally, I wrote a poem about “Advice to a Dog,” but I thought I could write something better. So after a night of babysitting, I decided to write one about “Advice to a Child,” instead.

4) Stress – The significance behind this title was due to the amount of stress that I had been feeling. By putting my emotions into a spoken word poem, it let me express my inner thoughts aloud. The purpose of this spoken word poem was to write about something that we had strong feelings about or to write about something we were passionate towards. The audience was for the world, in a round about way, because we wrote about things that everyone can relate to. My inspiration came the day before I had to present and it was after I had a small meltdown from all the stress in my life. The style for this poem was written the same way a rant would be. For example, one part of my poem goes, ” School is a living hell for me. I have to memorize things that I may never need to know about again. I’m bombarded with new concepts that don’t make sense to me. I’m told to learn how to manage my time, But have four different teachers telling me how many hours I should be spending doing more school at home.” This part of my poem was expressing my frustration with how school adds to my stress. As mentioned before, this idea came to me the night before I had to present. Before that I had written a spoken word poem about Best Friends. My inspiration behind that was from my best friend who has always been there for me through the good times and the rough. Now, I didn’t change my mind or have a fight with her, that’s not the reason I switched my spoken word poem. I found that I had more things to say about stress because I had a meltdown hallway through the week, therefore making it easier to write about. Through this journey I was able to see how easy writing was when it came from your heart and from true emotions.

How Do I Cook This Chicken?

As if buying the chicken from the grocery store wasn’t a big enough struggle, but now you mean to tell me I have to cook it too!?

Do I look like Superman to you?

Of course my friends, Heather and Elaine, took the easiest jobs and left me, the person who knows least about cooking, to cook the chicken. I mean, at least if I cooked the pasta or the scalloped potatoes I would be able to make sure it was cooked all the way. But, no! Let’s make the person who is challenged the most in the kitchen cook up the raw meat that may or may not kill us if not cooked properly.


So there I was staring at the package of chicken with no idea what to do with it. I didn’t know what spices to marinate the chicken with… Italian herbs, Rosemary, Thyme? What was the difference between them anyways? They all looked the same to me…

italian herbs

I didn’t know whether I wanted to use the little grill that we had or if I wanted to just pan fry it. There were so many options to chose from.



The only advice that was given to me was from Heather and all she had to say was, ” Don’t let it touch anything else or we may die from Salmonella.” And from that point on it was just me, my friends and this uncooked chicken.

So, I decided to just go with what felt right. I grabbed the Italian herbs because it had all the other spices in it too- who knew that Italian herbs had rosemary, thyme and some other spices in it?! I then searched all the cabinets in the kitchen to find the mini grill that we had. It took me a good 10 minutes before I could find it and set it up and another 5 minutes to figure out how to use it.

Once I finally sorted everything out, and finished cooking the chicken, it was time to see how they turned out. Heather told me that since I cooked them, I should taste test them too. I think it was just because she was worried that if it wasn’t cooked thoroughly, she’d get sick or something.

In the end, they tasted  really good and no one got food poisoning so I’d like to call it was a win-win for everyone because not only did they get to eat delicious chicken, but I also learned how to cook it and make it edible for others to enjoy.



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Stress. There’s no escaping it.


It’s been following me since … I don’t know when.

It always starts off as nothing,

But builds up sky-high in the end.


Unit finals

In class finals


Final projects


Practice Quizzes

Extra practice problems

University Applications


And breathe.

Physio: my life preserver.

Right before each session I can’t help but think:

But wait, those tests I have tomorrow

And those 5 other assignments that are due soon…

When’s the next diploma prep session?

Do I use Q=mcΔt for this question?

Great! I left all my notes in my locker.

How am I going to study for my bajillion tests?

And then my physiotherapist starts treating me,


First needle: Ouch!

Second needle: My muscles twitch.

Third needle: All my stress slowly starts to disappear.

But the moment I am back at it with school…

All my stress comes back, hitting me harder every time.

School is a living hell for me.

I have to memorize things that I may never need to know about again.

I’m bombarded with new concepts that don’t make sense to me.

I’m told to learn how to manage my time,

But have four different teachers telling me how many hours I should be spending doing more school at home.

Why don’t we just suffocate these students with knowledge?

Let’s make them spend countless hours doing school work.

One test? Nope! Let’s have them write four…. in one day!

Wait you’re giving your class a unit final tomorrow?

Might as well make mine tomorrow too then!

stress 2

Stress. There’s no escaping it.

I’ve tried, but it just won’t go away.

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Writer Seminar

Dear reader,

What comes to mind when you hear the name “Nicholas Sparks”?

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I’m not going to lie to you, and tell you that I was “jumping for joy”, or “so excited to finally get the chance to read one of his books”. You see, up until that point, I was hesitant to pick up one of his novels to read, simply because I thought it was just going to be another basic love story where a guy and girl meet, fall in love and live happily ever after. But boy, was I wrong!

Nicholas Sparks writes in such a way that is easy to understand and brings you on a roller coaster ride of multiple emotions throughout the story. I believe that anyone can read his novels as long as they read it with an open mind. And who knows, maybe you might like his style of writing as much as I do!

nic s

For anyone who was wondering what his style of writing was, I thought I would share an excerpt from his novel, “The Notebook”, that my partner and I got the class to emulate:

Who am I kidding?

I lead a simple life now. I am foolish, an old man in love, a dreamer who dreams of nothing but reading to Allie and holding her whenever I can. I am a sinner with many faults and a man who believes in magic, but I am too old to change and too old to care.

When I finally reach her room my body is weak. My legs wobble, my eyes are blurred, and my heart is beating funny inside my chest. I struggle with the knob and in the end it takes two hands and three truckloads of effort.  The door opens and light from the hallway spills in, illuminating the bed where she sleeps. I think, as I see her, I am nothing but a passerby on a busy city street, forgotten forever.

(Excerpt from Page.205)

When we gave the rest of the class time to write I also took some time to emulate and came up with this:

Who am I kidding?

I lead a hopeless life now. I am incurable, a young woman seeking for treatment, a patient who once dreamed of nothing more than a miracle to save me from this horrifying disease. I am a sinner with many faults and a woman who doesn’t believe anything or anyone can help me anymore, but I am still here, fighting one last time to survive for as long as I possibly can.

When the doctor finally comes to check on me, my body is weak. My arms and legs are trembling, my face is pale, and my vision is blurry. I struggle with getting and taking the pills and in the end it takes two nurses and three truckloads of effort. I finally swallowed all 12 pills that were given to me, and closed my eyes. I think, as I feel my body return to a more stable state, how much longer can I hang on to this life before I am nothing but another cancer patient who lost her battle?

All in all, Nicholas Sparks is a great author. His style of writing is using easy language, descriptive descriptions and a variety of human emotions, which all intertwine with one another to tie his storyline together. Some major themes that he writes about is romance, fear, loss/tragedy, overcoming difficulties and perseverance. Lastly his advice to writers is to write for you. Make a good story, by doing the research required and find your true calling. Don’t be afraid to write out of order, because there’s no rule saying you have to write from beginning, middle, to end. And the obvious one: practice! Without practicing you won’t improve. Nicholas Sparks encourages everyone to write at least 2000 words a day.

In the end, I am glad that I read “The Notebook”, and my only regret was not reading it sooner. I definitely recommend everyone to try reading any one of his books and to remember to have an open mind when doing so. As for myself, the next novel that I want to read from his collection is “The Last Song”.

last song

If you want to know a little bit more about Nicholas Sparks and any of his stories here is a fantastic site you could visit:

And if you would like to check out the presentation my partner and I put together feel free to check it out:

Thank you so much!




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Best Friend


A best friend is someone who understands you as if they live inside your head.

They’re the ones you cry and laugh with, and the ones you talk with for hours and hours on end.

They listen to all your problems and always take your side.

They make sure there’s always a smile on your face and help you through troublesome nights.

You can always count on them to be there, whenever you feel blue.

There’s never a dull moment when it’s just the two of you.

All the inside jokes you may have, or the secrets you guys have shared;

All the pictures you have taken; all the times you both showed each other you care.

So here’s to those nights where you had sleepovers and barely got any sleep,

And to those times where you had to keep something a surprise and couldn’t say a peep.

Here’s to the times you had crazy random dance parties or sang obnoxiously loud to songs.

Here’s to the days you spent away from each other. Yeah, I know, that weekend was really long!

Here’s to all the times you made fun of each other in a loving, joking sort of way,

And to all the times you hung out in the past, present and future, starting from today.

love besties

There aren’t enough words to explain how much my best friend means to me,

But if I could sum it up it’d be: my sister, my twin, my missing puzzle piece.

When it comes down to it, I truly do have an awesome best friend.

There’s no one quite like her and I’d fight to stay with her until the very end.

Not only is she the source of my happiness, and the light in my world,

She’s also constantly been there to pick me up when I fall and push me to try harder whenever I fail.

She’s there to make me laugh when I’m sad and is always just a text message, skype or phone call away.

She understands me like none other and always brightens my day.

This is for my best friend, that crazy girl that I’m always with.


Thank you for being my best friend; for being such a big part of my life.

You’re the greatest gift in the whole wide world. I love you with all my might.

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My Thoughts About Writing


I thought that all this extra practice would benefit me in the long run. I thought it would help boost my self confidence. But, no. It only feels as if all of this was a complete waste of my time. All it does is stress me out more, because I’m worried about the deadlines and all the expectations I have to meet.

I’m tired of having to write. But sometimes, I feel like I don’t write enough. There’s never a happy medium in which I can be satisfied with what I have done. I always feel like there’s something more to add, but never can pinpoint what it is that’s missing.

I never use to be like this though. Somewhere along my educational path, I lost touch with loving the process of writing. I started to grow to hate it. Now every time I have to write, it feels like someone is trying to shove creativity down my throat, in hopes that I’ll digest it or something…

Writing use to be something I enjoyed as a kid. It was something I would do for fun whenever I was bored. I used to think I wanted to become an English teacher for elementary kids, but now I’m not so sure. And I think it had to do with a parent teacher conference last year, back in 2013…

pt conf


The words that were exchanged at that parent teacher conference made me revaluate my views on writing and English as a whole. It felt like at that time, the teacher was telling me I was a failure. Now I  know that it was never their intention to crush my confidence and destroy my dreams, but to this day, I keep wondering to myself what could’ve/ would’ve happened if things went differently at that meeting.

Writing is a very subjective thing, so  I never expect everyone to like what I write. But, I also never expect people to tell me that I was a “much more sophisticated writer back in grade 9”.After all, I am in school to learn, and if you feel like I was a better writer back in the day maybe you could try to encourage me rather than tear me to shreds.

Expectations stress me out now, because I am afraid I’ll never be able to meet what’s required of me.


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No Way Out

This was not the way it was supposed to end.

I always told myself that if he acted out one more time I would pack my bags and leave. But I never found the courage to leave- I constantly reassured myself he would change, that he was just having another bad day, and that he truly did love me. I was too foolish to see that after 24 visits to the emergency room, and multiple calls to the police department, he was dangerous and couldn’t be trusted anymore. But I was blinded by my eternal love for him, and I believed that I could bring back the man I had once agreed to marry; the man who once vowed to never hurt me; the man who told me he would always love me no matter what. I never thought that the abuse would lead to something worse, let alone this.

 Here’s how I remember my last moments:

The walls were closing in. I could feel the air getting thinner. I kicked, cringed, and cried, as his hands slowly gripped tighter and tighter around my throat. I knew time was running out, and dialing for help would be my only hope.

“911. What’s the emergency?”


“Hang up! Are you going to make up some lie about what I did to you again? You’re still alive for God’s sake! Hey! I said… No, hey! Look at me! I said hang up the god-damn phone! Give me that! You’re going to wish…”

And just like that, the call was cut short, as I gasped for my last breath of air.

They found me lying in a corner on the floor with no pulse, and skin as pale as a porcelain doll. I was covered in bruises, from head to toe, that varied in shades of green, purple, and black from head toe. There were a few scars on my body from previous episodes, and fresh blood dripping from my head down my arms. The fresh blood was a result of him throwing glass at me to get my attention in the heat of the moment, forgetting that it would shatter into a million pieces and mangle me to a state of no repair.


I can’t say that he wasn’t aggressive towards me, because I knew he was. I was in an abusive relationship but wanted nothing more than for everything to work out between the two of us. However, he took his anger out on me by yelling at me and hurting me physically. I let it go, because I couldn’t bare the thought of living without him. I gave him so many chances to prove his love, but time and time again, he would lose control and spiral into a whirlpool of raging emotions.

Every time he lashed out was an opportunity for me to leave, to save myself from further harm. But I didn’t go. I couldn’t. I kept running back to him, telling myself he would change and that he deserved one more chance. But things remained the same, and all I ever got were more bruises, scars and wounds.

That night, I knew it would be my last with him. I could tell by the way his hands wrapped around me tensely, as he slowly intertwined his fingers together at the nape of my neck. I could see his teeth clench so tightly, it sent radiating shivers throughout his body.

None of that matters anymore, though, because he killed me… But he only did it to help me escape from his unstable and dangerous self.  He helped me escape, when I couldn’t find the courage to do so myself. He understood my internal conflict, my struggle to make the right choice.

 That’s why I’m here, about to be buried 6 feet underground, while he is sitting in a jail cell, for helping his loved one do the one thing she should’ve done herself a long time ago, when she was given the chance- escape.

Now it’s too late, and what’s done can’t be undone. We’re both trapped with no way out.


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Emulation Writing

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Advice To A Son

Never trust a white man,
Never kill a Jew,
Never sign a contract,
Never rent a pew.
Don’t enlist in armies;
Nor marry many wives;
Never write for magazines;
Never scratch your hives.
Always put paper on the seat,
Don’t believe in wars,
Keep yourself both clean and neat,
Never marry ****s.
Never pay a blackmailer,
Never go to law,
Never trust a publisher,
Or you’ll sleep on straw.
All your friends will leave you
All your friends will die
So lead a clean and wholesome life
And join them in the sky.

– See more at:


The above poem inspired me to try to mimick the writer, Earnest Hemingway’s, style of writing. However, instead of writing about advice to a son, I wrote about advice for little kids. It all started with a night of babysitting….


Advice to a Child

Never throw a tantrum,

Never Raise your voice,

Never leave your toys out,

Always make the right choice.


Don’t lie about your homework;

Nor try to hide uneaten food;

Never stay up past your bedtime;

Remember mommy and daddy need sleep too.


Always do the best you can,

Don’t ever ever cheat,

Remember to be respectful,

To everyone you meet.


Never forget your manners,

Never let your voice be unheard.

Always do things out of pleasure;

Do things on your own term.


Dare to be a dreamer,

Dare to spread your wings and fly.

You’ll never get any experience,

If you never dare to try.


Sometimes, to get your juices flowing, you can play around with poetry until you come up with an idea. Jashan, Anusha and I, wrote a poem about our good friend Heather, and it helped me get into a creative state of mind. So next time you have “writer’s block” when you need to do an assignment for poetry, try to write a funny one about your friends to let your mind reboot the creative side. You might be surprised to see what you are able to create with a little more creativity flowing in your brain. Here’s what my friends and I put together:



Heather is my friend,

Until the very end.


She is a girl.

She likes to dance and twirl.


She likes English AP.

Especially, Ms. Wolinsky.


She drives a car,

But isn’t allowed in a bar.


She loves to play soccer,

But she never cleans her locker.


She wants to be a teacher,

And would make an awesome preacher.


She goes to scouts,

And she caught a few trouts.


She always camps for fun,

But gets easily burnt in the sun.


She’s also in the school’s choir,

And she makes a horrible, horrible liar.


Her name is a Scottish flower,

She is the girl of the hour.


– Jashan, Anusha, and Vanessa



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