Don’t Feed the Trolls: A Writer’s Advice on Dealing With Online Bullies

By De Elizabeth

I’ve been a writer all my life, I suppose. If you were to go back in time to my elementary school days, you’d find me creating picture books about cats and dinosaurs. My childhood best friend and I even invented a publishing company called Lollypop Lick (not a joke). In fact, I’m pretty sure those silly little laminated books are probably buried in my closet at my parents’ house, just waiting to be brought out at a future holiday dinner.

In high school, I wrote Lord of the Rings fanfiction (again, not a joke). One of my stories – a riffing on the entire plot of The Two Towers, where I gave Éomer a love interest (finally, right?) – gained some form of notoriety on FanFiction.net. I woke up every day to dozens of comments on each of my chapters, most of them positive, begging for the next segment. But among the high forms of praise from my fellow LOTR fans, there was always one or two negative comments that were downright mean. We, in the fanfiction world, referred to them as “flames.” Continue reading

The Problem With Netflix’s New Movie, ‘Death Note’

By Megan Kramer 

I am 100% what present-day society would refer to as a “binge watcher.” I have been known to watch full seasons of TV shows in one day, or one weekend if the season is particularly long. And while my binge watching isn’t limited to Netflix, most of it occurs there. The streaming service not only has some of my favorite older TV shows to binge, but also new, original programs that have been wonderful: Marvel’s Jessica Jones, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Stranger Things and Master of None, to name a few (because trust that I could go on).

But I kind of feel like Netflix is totally killing me.

You may be thinking, “Well, binge watching definitely contributes to a sedentary lifestyle, but it’s probably illegal to say Netflix itself is killing you.” And you’d be right. But that’s not where I’m going with this. Continue reading

Life In A Military Family

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By Joanna Grey Talbot

Family vacations usually include detours for breathtaking, natural wonders or a restaurant with amazing reviews. Mine usually included detours to the nearby Marine Corps base that my father had been stationed at so he could give us a driving tour of his old haunts. As we drove past the parade deck (the large, paved area where ceremonies and training took place), his old office building, and the O-Course (obstacle course) that he ran many times he would be transported to a previous life that he viewed with a great sense of pride and nostalgia. My brothers and I would be wondering, “When’s lunch?” Continue reading

We Should Be Friends

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By De & Kate

We first heard Miranda Lambert’s new hit, “We Should Be Friends” a few days ago and quickly got to nodding and thinking, we should be friends! Although, to be honest, we’ve been singing that tune for a while now and would readily jump at any opportunity to put on a pair of old cowboy boots and kick it with her.

While we love any celeb who has managed to keep it real and stay down to earth in the public eye, we especially love these 5 ladies: Continue reading

6 Ways to Embrace the Marble Trend

By De & Kate

Marble is everywhere lately. It’s on phone cases, laptop cases, notebooks, makeup compacts, and even nails (yes, nails). Gone are the days when you’d just see marble on someone’s floors or countertops; now, it’s a fashion statement. And honestly, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. Even if you’re a little skeptical, we bet you can be turned into a marble fan in no time at all. Here are some ways you can rock this trend in your everyday lives (and be a walking Instagram post waiting to happen).  Continue reading

Just Show Up

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By Kate Kole

I love the moments in life where things just seem to click. When a song plays, or a conversation happens, or a piece is published – and right there, in that instance, you could practically swear it was meant for you – like the universe somehow aligned to give you the boost, inspiration, or wisdom you needed to carry on. Continue reading

Turning 27 And Accepting Imperfection In The Public Eye

Lily Collins

By Casey Rose Frank

Lily Collins would not be surprised to hear that her roles in movies like “Mirror, Mirror,” “The Mortal Instruments,” and “Stuck in Love,” have cemented her in my mind as perpetually 18. The actress, who turns 27 today, addresses her young face and the pros and cons of her perpetual youthfulness as just one topic in a collection of essays published last week, “Unfiltered: No Shame, No Regrets, Just Me.Continue reading

To All The Pregnant Ladies Who Are Officially Over Unsolicited Advice

Pregnant Ladies

By Vanessa Sams

Greetings to all amazing women out there! I’m here to talk about something that is relatively less accepted as an open topic at dinner parties; namely what happens when you are pregnant and not gushing around with giddiness.

Now, this post isn’t about downright misery. This is about when you are at a dinner and you stare at a bottle of wine longingly, and someone (who of course must be the Dalai Lama) wisely tells you, “oh but think of how you’re growing a little life!” And you instantly want to stab them. However, instead you feel compelled to nod and smile and say, “you are so right!”. Or, this might be a post about those times when you can’t walk around unassumingly without someone announcing horrible things that could be happening to you. These times may go something like, … you are walking… a random stranger approaches… they stop to say, “are you ready for all of that sleeplessness and diaper changing Mama?!” Give me a break. Continue reading

10 Things I’ve Learned Since I Started Writing About My Feelings On The Internet

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By Jillian Stacia

Exactly one year ago, I started writing about my feelings on the internet. And it’s been one of the best, hardest, weirdest, most rewarding things I’ve ever done. Pursuing your passion is always an intense process. But to do so on the internet, in front of- quite literally- millions of people, has been one of the bravest things I’ve ever done.

And I’ve learned a lot along the way. I’ve learned so much about myself, about writing, and about what it takes to go after your dreams. To help me reflect on my journey, here are some of the top lessons I’ve learned since hitting “send” on that very first submission: Continue reading