Category Archives: entertainment

More Writing Tips From Someone Who Doesn’t Know What They’re Doing

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(An unintended continuation of this post.)

The Emmys are tonight, which is super exciting and everything. This is an obvious opportunity to celebrate another year of brilliant television. There have been some amazing productions this year on both network, cable, and streaming services. The game is being changed, and it has been amazing to observe, to the point where reception has been, at times, delightfully overwhelming. This must be praised, as quality programming, like other forms of artistic expression, needs to be recognized, talked about, and experienced — because when it is, even more stories get told (especially those that probably wouldn’t have otherwise).

However, yet another year has gone by where I don’t feel like I even have an idea to flesh out. (Yes, I’m making this about me.)

One day I’d love to write something worthy of recognition on such a level. But to do that, I’m going to have to keep writing.

I’ve lived in Los Angeles my whole life, so the star-studded aspect isn’t novel to me. What is novel, however, is seeing people you know do things that you could only dream of doing. In knowing these people, I know first hand that they have the same 24 hours in one day as anyone else. They’ve periods of discouragement and laziness, like everyone else. But they keep moving.

This weekend I was able to go through some old stories and poems from college. Not to toot my own horn, but I wrote pretty damn well. But I was a bit stubborn and, due to writing more for the grade rather than the passion, present-day me could really sense the loss of drive and focus within each piece. It’s no wonder why I refused to read or write during the year following graduation.

The drive has definitely come back, though, almost to the point when I first started writing as a young teenager. I remember writing so much then, even performed at open mics and submitted my work to publications. I wasn’t afraid of saying or doing something. I wanted to contribute, and truly felt my work to hold as much weight as others’.

I’m not sure if that’s exactly the case for me now. If anything, I’m much more conscious about what I put out there, probably due to the saturation of ideas on social media, and how quickly information can be dispensed, digested, and transferred. The pressure to make an impact is very much there, as is the desire.

Like anything else, the view just needs to be scaled back a bit.  I need to go back in my personal history and touch on what’s been pushed out of memory. I need to ask myself difficult questions, especially in relation with others, and experience the breeze every once in a while. I need to write what I know, and be endlessly curious about what I don’t.

And, I need to keep writing.

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3 Things I Learned from Interviewing Miley Cyrus 

I just woke up from a very realistic dream where I had the opportunity to interview Miley Cyrus in promotion of her latest single, “Younger Now”, and overall upcoming era of music.

We met in the early afternoon at a hybrid Four Seasons/school auditorium-meets-my-bedroom-floor type of setting (a meaning I couldn’t even begin to interpret so early in the morning). I wore a maroon, 90’s-era sweater dress, and had my trusty notepad and audio recorder in tow. Miley wore a tan fedora over blonde and honey-brown locks, a sky blue t-shirt, distressed jeans, and boho bangles. I didn’t notice her shoes.

Anyway, this is what I learned during our dream-interview:

1. If the answer can’t be found out via Google search, don’t ask the question. For some reason, the interview setting was semi-one-on-one versus roundtable, so I followed an interviewer who asked Miley some really good questions, which  meant that I was left with  asking some pretty obnoxious questions. “How did you know that you wanted to be a singer?” “What do you think of your career trajectory?” Embarrassment dripped from my corner my mouth, while Miley’s eyes bored into me in mildly repressed irritation. She, of course, left the room shortly thereafter. I don’t blame her.

I learned very quickly that if you ever get the chance to dream-interview an international celebrity, don’t be like me. When in doubt, it’s far better to ask someone how they’re doing or what they’ll be doing when they’re in town. The chance at segue is far more possible.

2. As much as you think you know someone, check yourself, because you don’t. Especially celebrity, as well as us anons. People change with time and experience. Or they don’t. You only know what they choose to show you. Take that as some version of the truth. Maya Angelou is quoted as saying — paraphrased — that when someone shows you who they are, believe them. And to that, I’ll add: be appreciative of the time while you have it. You may never get it back.

3. Be happy with your existence, at all stages. Ours was a painfully brief exchange, but I couldn’t help but notice that on the back of the lightly worn, sky blue shirt she was wearing was an image of Hannah Montana.

Every now and then you may hear someone say – with a hint of chagrin – that they were such a super fan during a  very glittery, countrified, hot pink time in life, having since grown up and out of it. But I’d bet money that if “See You Again” came on the radio, they’d be back in that mode like no time had passed. 

All of life’s stages are gone through for a reason and are worthy of acknowledgement, as they still exist with us. Dream-Miley’s recognition of herself — she used to be, who she is now, and who she will be — is to be admired.

If you haven’t yet seen the music video for “Younger Now”, check it out below as well as her performance at the 2017 MTV VMAs this past Sunday:

photo via wikimedia.org