"All the world's a stage, and the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances; and one man in his time plays many parts."

- William Shakespeare

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

now what?

If I believed in karma, I would never have children. Because, boy, would I be in for some doozies. When I was a wee lass, I was... terrifying. My parents deserve medals and my babysitters deserve so much more than the five dollars an hour they were paid for having to deal with me.

Let's just say, I've never been a very patient person. Like.. at all. This is probably why I enjoy driving so fast. And why traffic is my own personal version of hell.

Of course, being an impatient person living in this day in age can be pretty exhausting. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that teleportation devices and knowledge-filled-brain-disks make an appearance while I'm still alive so I can experience the wonders of never having to wait for anything. But in the interim, I guess I'll just have to accept the idea of 'later'.

Like I said, that's never been a word I really enjoy hearing. 'Now' is much more preferred.

I want that dress now. My stomach wants food in it now. I could use that job right about now. How about we drop everything, act on an impulse and get that tattoo now? It's like the word 'later' never even shows up as a blip on my brain's radar. So this whole 'figuring out what I want to do with my life later on down the road' has always been something I'd rather not give much thought to.

Until now.

Because now I'm only 13 credits away from graduating from university (hallelujah). And now I'm almost 24 and still living with my parents. And now it's finally struck me that I may actually be a little bit of an adult. So later is approaching a lot faster than I thought.

Later used to be this far off place where dreams come true and money just appears in bank accounts and I always look really stylish and have a Julia Roberts laugh... Later was a place where I was a successful fill-in-the-blank who lived in a really cool city and life was a grand adventure.

Don't get me wrong, now ain't too shabby. I mean, I have a great job that allows for plenty of adventures, fantastic friends and I'm working really hard on that Julia Roberts laugh.. it still sounds a little forced, but it's coming along ;)

But now I have to start factoring in later. If I want to be a successful fill-in-the-blank (which has all of a sudden become 'high school teacher slash author' -- who saw that coming?? Probably everyone but me..), I'll need to put in the time and effort... and patience. Gah! There's that word again! And yet, for once in my life, I'm actually looking forward to the process. I'm staring down the barrel of the gun, so to speak, that is my unknown future and I'm not freaking out. I have a legitimate plan that isn't wishy-washy or airy-fairy and I'm putting it into action now.

Granted, this plan literally came into being about a week ago, but I've never felt so at peace. The plan, of course, being that I finish my undergraduate, go to teachers college and eventually become a high school English teacher (with maybe some drama and history classes thrown in as well). This job would not only allow me to be involved in the lives of dozens of teenagers everyday (something I'm actually looking forward to - I may need to be checked into the nearest asylum), but it would give me the ability to be a writer as well. And, the drama geek in me would probably try to use the summers off to be in as many plays as possible too.

As usual, I'd still like to treat this plan like something that I've penciled in for my life story, whereas God still has complete control over what'll be written in stone, but it feels so cool to actually have an answer for that perpetual question: now what?

That being said, it's now past midnight and my body and my brain are telling me it's a good time to hit the hay, so I think I'll do that. I just hadn't blogged in a really long time, and with the whole new 'life goal' constantly being on my mind, I thought I might as well share it. Next blog post I'll try to talk about something more interesting and relevant to the world.. like, say, the Avengers. (life changing!!) ...But until then,

Keep it real!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


I only have two assignments due in the next few hours so I felt right now was the perfect time to write a little post. This one's just for fun, I don't plan on being profound -- just procrastinate-y.

The other day, I found myself participating in a conversation about the 'poke' option on facebook. My friend was asking what its purpose was (which, in the end is a futile question because I'm sure it actually doesn't have a purpose, but we managed to have a whole discussion about it, so... yeah) and my argument was that its purpose is to acknowledge someone without having to use those tiresome things we call 'words'.

Of course, this sounded ridiculous then and still does now, but I happen to think it's actually true. We're the generation that went from phone calls to texts and now we've fallen so low all we can do is poke. How sad is that?

Now you may say, "But, Lars, I haven't used the poke button in years" (I know this is true for me because really, the poke button just creeps me out), but have you used the 'like' button? I think it holds the same purpose. I see a status, a picture, a quote - anything really - that moves me, makes me laugh, makes me think and what do I do?

I 'like' it.

I don't take the time to say "Hey Carly, I totally agree!" Or "Wow, Sharon, it's SO snowy there! What are you doing with your snow day?"
... I just 'like'. And I know I'm not the only one.

I love that facebook doesn't have a 'dislike' button mainly because not having that option causes people to actually speak or share their opinion, even if it's just to say, "I wish facebook had a dislike button."

Like I said, I just wanted to put my opinion out there. This has actually been on my mind since the appearance of the 'like' button, so I thought now was as good a time as any to share it with the world. Do with it what you want... But I'd love it if my sharing of words with you causes you to maybe share some words of your own. Or you can just be that witty person who 'likes' this post on my facebook page ;) I won't judge... well, at least, not out loud.

Keep it real!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

life in the fast lane

Today, when I was speeding and weaving through traffic for no reason other than the sheer joy and excitement it brings me, a lightbulb went on in my head. I realized that my desire to be a stunt driver is a lot stronger than I originally thought.

This idea was probably first sparked yesterday when I was driving my sister to Hamilton and she commented on my driving. She mentioned the fact that we didn't need to get there before 6 and was clearly intimating that, at the rate I was going, we'd be early. I was going to tell her that I wasn't doing it on purpose -- it's just the way I always drive -- but I decided against it when it dawned on me that normal people probably find my need for speed a little.. abnormal.

But, really, that's neither here nor there, as I have grown to accept and embrace my abnormal-ness at this point in my life. So.. moving on!

Back to the idea of taking the stunt driving dream seriously. Maybe it was Ryan Gosling's character in Drive or maybe it was the seizure that is Speed Racer ... or maybe it's just my life-long obsession with hot cars, fast driving and all around stupidly dangerous activities... Whatever the case, I've got a serious desire to get behind the wheel of a car and make movie magic. And for some reason, it took today's commute to school for me to fully realize this.

You'd think that, as the girl whose favorite scene in movies is always the car chase scene, this realization would've come a little sooner, or at least wouldn't have been this much of a shocker.. But, like most things in my life, it took a while for me to catch on.

Now that I'm up to speed though (aha! get it?), I'm pretty excited. Sure, I know I need to keep my focus on school for at least the next few months and then I should probably pay a little bit of attention to the river of school debt threatening to drown me.. And yeah, I also need to factor in the fact that when I don't get a chance to write often enough I feel as though my world may implode.. Oh, and there's also the fact that training for this 'new' passion of mine will cost a pretty penny..

But all those things aside, the thumpity-thump-thump of my heart beat is telling me that this is a severely cool new thing on my horizon that I can't wait to sink my teeth into!

I had a taste of it a year or two ago when I took my first stunt-driving course, so I've got an inkling of what I'm about to throw myself into, but there's really no telling how far this can go. Maybe that's what excites me most.

Actually, that's a lie. The thing that excites me most is the idea of having a back-seat driver that isn't saying "slow down!" but rather "SPEED UP!" ;)

Lars out.

Keep it real!

Thursday, January 12, 2012


I've been sort of noticing a decline in my optimism or even just general happiness lately and it's completely unjustifiable because my life, though hectic, is bordering on fantastic. So I don't know what brought about this silly mood, but I know what I'm going to do to change it.

Today I created WMTG - "What Made Today Great".

It's pretty self-explanatory, really. My plan is to take a few moments everyday and just think about the experiences or whatever that happened over the past twenty-four hours which made my day particularly great. I may include more WMTG posts in future, or I may just keep my personal affairs to myself... but where's the fun in that? haha

Anyway, the reason why I'm blogging about it today is to put the idea out there. In case anyone else is feeling the winter blues or going through some difficult times or school is already starting to stress you out - whatever your situation, I'm sure WMTG can't hurt it :)

So here's my WMTG for Thursday, January 12, 2012.

1) I made an amazing thrift store purchase today. Brand new H&M dress with the original tags and everything [ for dirt cheap! :D ]

2) 30 Rock has finally come back with their newest season! :)

3) I got to write Jan 12/12 at the top of all my notes in class today.

4) I came home to find that my mom had ordered my favorite take-out for dinner.

5) I went to the archery range for the first time in a few months.

6) My fortune cookie (from my above-mentioned favorite take-out) read: "Your present plans are going to succeed" ... which means I should really start making some plans to do something! lol

7) I finished my first assignment of the semester and handed it in.

And 8) My dad gave me some really great advice in the car on the way to archery. His words have already helped me breathe a lot easier.

What's really great is the fact that I could still add more to my list! It's funny, when you start to look for the good stuff, you'll usually find a lot more than you were expecting. I hope it's the same for you! Even if you can only find one thing that made your day a little brighter, then WMTG has helped.

I may not blog about it, but I think I'll definitely be keeping an eye out for things to put on my list tomorrow! Might I recommend you do the same? You won't regret it ;)

Keep it real!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The End?

I'm an avid reader of YA (young adult) fiction. Sometimes I call it research - that I'm studying the ways of authors who've succeeded in the genre I write for - but it's more than that. I find YA just contains my favorite writing style. Fast-paced, relatable and sympathetic characters, adventure, romance - yes, all of those things at once. It's quite the feat, really. But one thing I'm getting really tired of is the endings.

I just finished reading The Hunger Games (I literally couldn't put it down), but it's only the first novel of three. It ends... but not really. I'm satisfied... but I already plan to buy Book 2 over my lunch hour today. I came to the end of the book, but no where near the end of the story.

Whatever happened to the stand-alone book? It's like everything is a part of a series these days. Maybe this isn't the case for all book genres and my perspective's slightly skewed from never looking past YA, but it seems to me that movies are taking this direction too. Is it a money-grab? Is it because our attention spans have been shrinking as the years have progressed? Is it that our imaginations have shrunk too? We can't think of our own stories for our favorite characters and we like them too much to let them go so we expect the author to continue their stories endlessly?

This series idea seems novel, though when viewed within the history of the story itself, 'new' can even encompass the last few decades, if not more. Look at J.R.R Tolkien. His publisher was given one giant book (granted, it was divided into nine parts - but it was meant to be sold as one story) and he decided to make it into a series of three books. Why?

I'll admit, the aspiring author in me has plenty of series ideas up her sleeve. But I miss the C.S. Lewis series. The way The Chronicles of Narnia contains seven books, but each can function as a stand-alone book. I like reading the words 'The End' and knowing that it really is the end. That the good guys will stay out of trouble, for the most part; that the bad guys have really, seriously been vanquished. My brother and I watched the third Transformers the other day and found it hysterical that they've managed to drag out the same villain for all three movies. Megatron just can't die. It's funny until you think to yourself, "Really? That's the best we can do?" Again, it's Michael Bay so I know it isn't the best our society can do - at least, not when it comes to story.

Don't get me wrong, I loved The Hunger Games, and if it's my money they want, it's my money they'll get. This afternoon at 1 o'clock, I'll be purchasing my copy of Catching Fire and, if it's on sale, Mockingjay. But I just miss the old-fashioned ending...

Is that what it is? Old-fashioned? To say 'it is finished' and actually mean it?

Anyway, I need to get to work so I can make some money to feed my reading addiction...

Keep it real!

Monday, November 7, 2011

out there

Alright, I've got good news and bad news.

Let's start with the bad news first 'cause I'd much rather end on a good note.

The bad news is that I heard back from the agent who'd shown an interest in my book and she said she won't be taking me or my story on right now. Of course, there's an excellent silver lining to this - she gave me some critiques on my story and I actually agreed with all of them. In fact, what she said encouraged me to finally do the thing I've been wanting to do but have been to afraid to actually follow through with... and that is to completely re-write my book. Starting from chapter one, page one.

It's an incredibly daunting task, to be sure, but it's definitely what I want to do. I began writing my book almost three years ago and in those three years I've changed so much in a zillion different ways and my maturing writing style (though my blog is hardly a good example of it) is only one of those changes... though I'll admit, it's the one of greatest prevalence to this situation.

Also - sidenote, part of this decision was borne from a lecture I went to a few months ago where I heard Kelley Armstrong (best-selling author) speak. She said that she wrote her first novel over the course of about seven years, finally thought it was good enough to be submitted to an agent, found an agent and then she and her agent decided it was actually the best idea to scrap what she had and start from scratch. Keeping the characters and the same general story, she went at it and produced what is now Bitten. So I'll be taking a page out of her book (not literally, though I do like her writing). I'm beginning the process again with all the knowledge I've gained over the last three years. Knowledge about writing, stories, drama, etc, but also the knowledge of my own characters. It'll be fun to see them in completely different situations that still tell the same story I set out to write in April of 2009.

Anyway, that's the bad news (with a bit of optimistic flare), so here comes the good news (and the reason for my blog post's vague title).

A short story of mine is going to be published! Although, it's on an online journal dealy, so I like the term 'out there' more than 'published'. Also, I had told myself that on the day I become a published author, I'll be getting the quill tattoo I've been hankering for, but it doesn't feel like the right time yet... thus, 'out there' is all my story is for the time being.

The story will actually be going up tomorrow (November 8, 2011). And the website is Commuter Lit. This is how the site's editor described my story in a nut shell:

"A tap on her shoulder in a grocery store line up, penetrates a young woman’s numbness. Losing Him by new contributor Larissa Benfey."

So... do me a solid and check it out :)

But I think that's it as far as news, good or bad, goes. That rewrite I referred to earlier? I'm already three pages in and have, like, pages and pages of notes, so to say I'm really excited about it would be putting it lightly. I'll keep you updated on that and any other writing slash acting slash modeling fun times that occur in the near future! Although, right now it looks as though I'll be bogged down with school work for the rest of eternity... someone please point out the light at the end of the tunnel! Mine's fading into oblivion!! :P

Okay, I'm going to go now... I'm far too behind in my readings to spend another minute doing anything else!

Keep it real!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

shake, rattle & roll

I don't think my dad realizes that when I walk around the house in a sweater with the hood up, hunched shoulders and the fluffiest slippers you can imagine, it means I'm cold.

But I am.

I'm very cold. And it's becoming a re-occuring theme all of a sudden. Which can only mean one thing...

Winter is upon us.

It's only two months (to the day!) until Christmas. Two. Months. Can you believe it? If I wasn't so cold, I'd be pretty excited. I mean, let's be honest - I've been listening to Christmas carols for a good three weeks now.

Still, as much as I day dream about hot chocolates and glistening sunlight on freshly fallen snow, my mind can't help but reverting back to thinking, "Why can't I feel my toes?!"

And this is me indoors. Which brings me back to my father.

I caught him outside the other day (when I managed to shuffle out of my room in my warmest sweater and pajama pants), just sitting on one of the muskoka chairs on our porch. I asked him what he was doing. "Cooling off," was his only response. The sad thing is, he hadn't come from a run or a work out - he'd just been working at his desk inside. But apparently the 'heat' was too much for him. The same 'heat' that makes me afraid to leave my bed in the morning for fear of frostbite.

Oh, the joys of having a father (aka thermostat controller) with an internal heater!

If you're wondering where I am this winter when you're out having a snowball fight or ice skating or snowboarding... I'll be cuddled up in my bed, too terror-stricken to venture out into the cold hallway and further out into the probably warmer outdoors.

Lucky for me I've got enough movies to last a lifetime and a new bar-fridge in my room, so I can afford to begin hibernating a bit earlier this year! Of course, you won't get rid of me that easily - my computer gets warm enough to roast marshmellows over... which is probably a bad thing, but it sure beats last year's 'middle-of-the-room-garbage-can-fire'! ;)

Keep it real!