Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Ninjas and Rule Breaking

So over the past month I've been involved with the awesome NINJA WRITERS over at Ali Cross's blog.  They're pretty much the coolest people ever.  Ali runs a weekly #ninjachat on Thursday afternoons for all the writers to get together and, well, CHAT.  I went to one, had tons of fun, and then found myself volunteering to host the new Tuesday night chats for all of June.  I. LOVED. IT.  The ninjas are writers at all different stages of the profession, which I think is so awesome.  It's great to chat with published writers and agented writers and querying writers and still-starting writers all at the same time.  It's an awesome community full of awesome people and I am happy to count myself a part of it.

One of the coolest things I've ever seen a community do is happening this week.  Ali and several others are rallying around fellow ninja Elana Johnson to celebrate and promote her book POSSESSION which comes out TODAY!  This blog hop is a small part of said rallying, and as a ninja I thought it would be great to get involved.

I'm supposed to write about a time that I broke the rules.  I'd been thinking and thinking about what I could possibly write about (I'm a fairly rule-followy kind of girl), and for a while I was kind of stuck. The best thing I could think of was the time I got detention in middle school for "food fighting".  It's not a very interesting story, though: I threw a wrapped string cheese at the wall above my friend's head.  The end.

Finally I realized that there WAS something I could talk about. One thing that started in high school and continued into college that was definitely rule-breaky and destructive and yet worked out okay: DITCHING.

My senior year of high school was kind of a joke to me.  I had a more-than-full schedule, but I was way more interested in Theatre than any of my core classes.  I took College Prep English instead of AP (shock!) and didn't bother to do my Calculus homework.  I was late to 0-hour Econ so much that I got a Saturday School (which actually turned out to be my most productive day of that school year).  I even ditched Seminary to go to Stagecraft because I was the Stage Manager for the show that semester and I wanted to be involved with the other techies.

Of course, I still graduated with Highest Honors. So, yeah, no big deal.

In the beginning of college I did much better. I went to my classes and enjoyed them. I did my homework. Things were good! Until I studied abroad and got back into my old habits.

In Mexico I was homesick and lonely and (though I didn't realize it at the time) sinking into depression.  Instead of going to class every day I would ditch at least once a week and watch Vlogbrothers videos and read Maureen Johnson's tweets.  It was sad and kind of pathetic, but you know what?  I am SO HAPPY I DITCHED.  Do I still wish I had gone to class and done my homework so I could have gotten better grades?  Sure.  But honestly, I think things turned out swimmingly.  The choices I made back then, while maybe not conventionally the best ones*, actually lead to some good things happening in my life.  I met awesome friends, became active in some really neat online communities, and even started developing new skills like creating and editing videos.  So, yeah, I broke the rules.  And I didn't know what would come of my choices when I made them.  But I did make them, and I've embraced that.  I've come to see that things work out in the end, especially when you own your past actions and follow up with new, better actions**.

Anyway, I know this is kind of long and ramble-y, but there you have it!  Thoughts from Allison.  Hope they made sense :)

And a BIG CONGRATULATIONS to Elana Johnson! Way to go! Can't wait to read POSSESSION :)

Until next time, best wishes!

<3 Allison


*Okay, they were bad choices. Don't ditch, kids! I ended up continuing this habit and failing several classes in later semesters, which lead to me taking an extra year to finish college and repeating one class THREE TIMES. Spare yourself the heartache. Don't ditch. Things worked out, yeah, but that's because I choose to look at my circumstances from a larger perspective (so what if I take an extra year?) and accept the consequences of my actions. It still really sucks, though

**Like actually attending and doing the homework the third time you take a class...


Sewing projects completed: 0
Books read: 2 (both audiobooks, though)
Buffy episodes watched: 122/144
Angel episodes watched: 39/110
Current reading: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (audiobook)



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Check it out! All these lovely people are blogging about breaking the rules to celebrate the release of POSSESSION by Elana Johnson! Help spread the love by checking out their posts, too <3