I’ve done the last of my pre-semester shopping, so it’s time to write a post about what’s going to be happening to me this semester at Ohio State University. My college life and my writing have often been intertwined since I got to school here. When my grades are good and life’s going my way, my writing has done well. When life’s tough and I’m not doing so well grade-wise, my writing has suffered (or worse, my writing hasn’t even happened because I just don’t have the time or energy to write! That happened last semester). Which is probably why I write these posts at the beginning, middle, and end of each semester, because both are so essential to each other as I try to become the writer I’ve always dreamed of being.

In terms of classes, all but one of them are devoted to the study abroad trip I’m going on this summer. The study abroad trip visits England, France, and Germany, and we’ll be intensively studying World War II. With that in mind, many of my classes are focused exclusively preparing for the trip. I already took a general World War II class and a History of the Holocaust class in past semesters, so the number of classes I have to take have been pared down. Still, there are a few I still need to take: one is a special History research seminar, in which we’ll be covering various WWII-related topics and then do research projects around that (I’m assuming). Another History class is devoted to the rise of America as a world superpower from 1921 to 1963 and hinging around the US’s involvement in WWII (I guess a semester of prep for studying World War II abroad just wouldn’t be complete without one course that’s America-centric in nature). The other two classes are French classes: one is a course on French-American relations throughout the years. I’m pretty sure this’ll involve everything from the various wars the US and France have both been involved in since the French and Indian War as well as such silly topics as “freedom fries” (the latter is actually in the title of the class, if I remember right). The second course is a course in learning everyday French and learning how to say “Thank you for your help”, “Where is the bathroom?”, and “I would like a Belgian waffle. Oh your wife is Belgian? Cool! Tell her I love the waffles and chocolates!”


The beach of Normandy. We’ll be studying D-Day this semester and visiting the beach during the trip. Can’t wait!


In addition to the French class, I ordered some software off Amazon last night that’ll teach me to speak German. Not only will this be relevant to the trip, but it might be relevant for a future story and it doesn’t hurt to be able to speak Hebrew, French and German when I apply for jobs in the future. I’m actually looking forward to learning the language, and the software I got received some very good reviews on Amazon, so I hope I’ll really be able to utilize it. I also plan to apply for several scholarships and get the funds I need to travel abroad. I hope I can get a ton of scholarship money! Otherwise it might be difficult to go on the trip!

The only class I’m taking this semester that isn’t related to my study abroad trip is an English course for my English major. Specifically, it’s an English 4597 course, which is one of those courses all English majors are required to take at some point late in their college careers. Fortunately they offer several different varieties of this class, so I ways able to choose one that worked with my other classes and sounded interesting: Deaf Literature and Deaf Culture (when I tell people I’m taking this course, they ask me if I mean “deaf” or “death”. Considering that it’s me they’re asking, it’s a relevant question). It looks pretty interesting, and we have some very interesting books, including a children’s book that intertwines illustrations with prose into two different narratives. Not your average children’s story, to say the least.

I’m also working about ten to twelve hours a week at the Financial Aid office this semester, just like I did last semester. With busy season over, the office should quiet down a little. Still, there’s a literal mountain of work to get done, and I’ll be working through some of that mountain every time I step into the office. I don’t mind though: the work usually isn’t too bad, the people are great, and I’ve come up with some great ideas for short stories and novels while restocking the copy paper or sifting through some recently-scanned documents (so if you think a job will sap you of your creativity as you try to create the ultimate story/painting/poem/etc., here’s an example to the contrary).

And finally, I just want to fill everyone in on my social plans and my writing goals for this semester. I hope to be able to hang out with my friends a bit this semester, just like I did last semester, but I also want to socialize more and do new things. Last semester I joined the science fiction club on campus, but I was so busy I was only able to come to two meetings. I hope to attend more often this semester. I also would like to go to events in and around campus and meet new people. And who knows? I may even try to start a relationship of the romantic nature this semester. Don’t know if that’s possible or if I’ll have time for that, but I can try.

So looking forward to finally getting Snake done and published. I hope plenty of people read it.

And as for my writing, I plan to finish Video Rage‘s first draft either this weekend or in the coming week. I’m almost done with one of the chapters and after that there’s only two more to go. I already have the ending planned out, I just need to get there. And after I finish VR, I’ll take a short break from writing before getting to work on several short stories. Over the past semester I’ve come up with over sixty ideas for short stories, but I’ve been so busy with school, work and VR I haven’t had the time to write any of them, so I want to get some of them out of the way this semester. And after I’ve written enough short stories that I’m satisfied and submitted a few of them to magazines and other publications, I’ll take another break before I get back to work on my other WIP Laura Horn, which I hope to finish up before the fall when I start a new novel for my senior thesis.

I also have plans to edit VR when the time comes, start the basis of a new collection of short stories, write several articles to Self-Published Authors Helping Other Authors, and of course to finish the final draft of Snake and get it ready for publication. My friend Angela Misri is almost done giving me feedback on the book, and after she’s done I’ll interview her about her work, including the publication of her novel Jewel of the Thames, which is coming out sometime this spring. It’s going to be a great semester!

Now though, I have to go on a short shopping trip and then make dinner for myself. Afterwards I plan to do some last-minute preparations for the new semester before retiring for the evening. So with this, I wish you a good night and I’ll see you tomorrow, my Followers of Fear. Wish me luck in the new semester as I take on the world, prepare for my trip, and try to fulfill all my dreams. It’s going to be hard work, but I’m so ready to take up the challenge.

See you in eight weeks when I let you know how I’m doing.

  1. You’re going abroad? That’s awesome. Did I tell you I will be going to Europe too in April, as part of the World War I centennial? But of course, we will be visiting WWII sites as well, such as Normandy, Caen, Dieppe, and some other places in the Bocage country.

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