I felt a lot more relaxed about the course this week. I think I have almost found my bearings online and have a better handle on my time and the assignments.
I started out in this course as not a big fan of horror, and I can still say that that is true. Although the course readings and viewings have given me a different perspective on horror as a genre and the multiple ways it can be created, I still can’t get passed the fact that I don’t enjoy being scared.
Reading for the week:
This week’s reading and viewing assignments were difficult for me to finish. I did alright with the different readings since I was able to hold my imagination in check, but the videos are another story. I wasn’t able to watch them and I’m disappointed, but it is too late and all I can do is make myself do better next week. This is what I had to say about the readings:
“This week’s content assignments were new and interesting to me. I started out by doing the readings (I read the Poe story myself along with viewing the video). I found these readings fascinating, not only for their content, but also because of how they sharply contrasted each other.
I had never read a comic before this class and I found it really interesting. I loved the idea of having a host character and the story was well developed even though it was short. Some of the parts of the story I found to be a little ridiculous. For example, the exclamation points pretty much after every sentence. I could tell the writer was trying to create an ominous feeling, but I just felt like I was screaming each sentence in my head. My favorite part was the twist at the end. I thought it would just be finding him dead cuddling his dead wife or something, but the fact that he was eating her to keep himself alive was not only disgusting but really surprising! I think the story I enjoyed the most was “The Lottery”. I don’t quite mean enjoy because that story was very far from giving me joy, but it sucked me in more than any of the others did. Because we were reading it for this class I knew it must have an element of horror, but the way it is written gives the reader a false sense of comfort and when you get to the end you come to the realization of whats happening and its almost like a car crash; you don’t want to see the rest but you just have to keep reading. Poe’s story “Berenice” which was technically a video was hard to understand at first and then just all together disturbing. “Berenice” definitely scared me the most out of all the stories, but it was mostly because of the description of the creature and less of the actual storytelling.
I’m going to be honest and say that I tried to get to the videos and I just couldn’t. I started them and then a combination of running out of time and being too much of a scardy cat made me unable to watch them.”
I really enjoyed this short video and Vonnegut’s charisma! It immediately made me think of the stories I had read and connect them to the shapes of the different stories. I decided to connect the video to “The Lottery”, which was my favorite story. Here is what I had to say:
“I really enjoyed this video and thought Vonnegut was hilarious! I think it’s really interesting to connect his ideas about stories to “The Lottery” story that we had to read this week. That story seems to defy all of Vonnegut’s shapes of stories. It starts out a little above average and seems to just stay there for most of the story. As a reader we go along with what seems to be a ritual for this village. The story shape slowly starts to drop as tensions raise and you start to realize that something terrible is about to happen. As the first stone is thrown the story drops all the way down to the bottom and abruptly ends. I think it would have been really interest to get Vonnegut’s take on this story and I think he would have been hilarious discussing it!”
Now this assignment brought me wayyyyyyyy out of my comfort zone. I had no idea what to do for this and just decided what the hell! I’m gonna go for it. So I apologize if my evil sad baby is disturbing but I’m trying to explore more in this course and this was my first big venture. The way I decided to use a baby was just because I thought a killer baby was super creepy and I could write it easily for some reason. Welcome to my new character sad killer baby:
“Daddy never loved me. He told me I killed mama when I was born. Every day he told me he missed her, and he’d never loved me. “You were a mistake anyways,” he’d say. It made me sad. One day daddy kicked me so hard I bled too. I thought I was gonna die just like mama. Blood blood blood. Yell yell yell. I wanted my mama, but she was gone. All I had was a mean daddy. On the last day he yelled again, and made me cry. That was the last time he yelled. There was blood blood blood. “Goodbye daddy,” I said, “say hello to mama, see you soon.” Then there was blood blood blood.
Now I don’t have a mama or daddy. So I tell stories. The stories are my friends.”
I really enjoyed doing these assignments this week! I like that we have a lot of choices to get inspiration from and I could do very different kinds of assignments. The first one I did was about a loss suffered from technology. This reminded me of a story my mom loves to tell that I am able to remember about me destroying the only television we ever had in my house. I enjoyed going back to that time and remembering how my house looked and all the old shows I loved and my pet rock. Here’s the story:
“When I was a little kid, I didn’t have much technology around me. I mean it was the late 90’s/early 2000’s so there wasn’t much technology around yet, but the crowning jewel of my home at the age of five was our television. I would sit in front of that thing to no end. I watched Dragon Tales, Power Rangers, Arthur, you name it. Now as a five year old I would get very upset when my mother would take over my TV time to watch her shows (Rosy O’Donnell, Ellen, etc.), but she was the adult so she got her way.
One fine evening as my mother was preparing dinner and I was watching a particularly riveting episode of Power Rangers, my mother came in to warn me that I would soon need to turn the TV off to come and eat dinner. As any five year old would, I pretended not to hear her and continued enjoying my show. She warned me a second time and I still refused to acknowledge her.
By this time my mother was pretty frustrated. She walked into the living room and turned the TV off herself and told me I had lost my privileges for the next day since I didn’t listen. She walked back into the kitchen to bring our dinner to the table and all of a sudden heard a loud CRASHHHH!!
Now, as a five year old, I of course had a very sparkly and very large pet rock. And let me tell you, she was B E A U tiful! In that moment when my mother had come in and shut of the TV, cutting me off from the most pivotal moment of the episode, I lost it. I took my beautiful pet rock and threw it with all my might at the television screen. My mom ran into the room horrified and I stood there letting the immense stupidity of what I had just done sink in.
From then on I never had a TV in my house again. The one I destroyed was taken away and was never replaced by another. I have now always treated my various forms of technology with the utmost respect they deserve, but I will always mourn the loss of not only my TV but also my beautiful sparkly pet rock.”
The second assignment I chose to do was a haiku about something I loved or enjoyed. This past week has been so hot but finally the cool winds are blowing in and the first pumpkin spice lattes are out and FALL IS COMING. So I wrote my haiku about fall being on its way:
“Autumn is coming.
Burgundy sunsets galore.
I love this season.”
The third writing assignment was wonderful and hard to write. I was supposed to write about my own last words, but I recently lost my great aunt and her last words were too spectacular to not write about. I had a nice time revisiting things I love about my aunt and finding out about her last words. Here’s the story:
“I like this assignment, but instead of doing my last words I would like to tell the story of my great aunt Maggie’s last words.
My aunt Maggie passed away this past year from complications with cancer. My family was unable to be there with her at the end because we live on the other side of the country, but at her funeral I was able to hear the story of my hilarious aunt Maggie’s final words.
As she lay, surrounded by her siblings, husband, and daughter, she began to say: “I never liked…I never liked…I never liked…” and seemingly not wanting to end on a negative note, she continued, “I always liked…Shakespeare.”
After hearing this story my whole family laughed and cherished the beauty of those final moments.
I hope my final moments can be just as lovely, surrounded by my family and just commenting on the things that I’ve always liked.”
These were super fun this week. I was brought out of my comfort zone by participating in the group poem and connected to one of my literature classes by mentioning “The white man’s burden” with the theme of the poem.
The second one was fun to imagine myself as an animal and try to not let that show till the end of my very short story while being constrained by the twitter character limit, but I’m pretty happy with what came out of it!
The last one took me awhile to figure out what to do and I knew I wanted to do something funny and then it just came to me and I grabbed a piece of paper and drew it:
Organizing my blog:
I struggled a lot with figuring out how to make categories and set up a menu of them on my blog and I was so close to just asking a friend to figure it out for me, but I finally figured it out and the satisfaction of doing it myself was so awesome and I’m proud of myself that I’m finally learning!