Background in writing: Short stories, essays, non-fiction, reflective narratives, investigative journalism, interview based journalism, critical reviews, critical op-eds, event news, poetry, speculative fiction, graphic novel scripting, performance scripting
things I want to mention: researching for fiction, working collaboratively with other creators, managing student newspapers, teacher assistantship in high school allowing me to teach a segment on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, creation of a student paper, personal drive to finish and be published
purposes in pursuing degree: To educate and inform. To help bolster literary pursuits and to thaw the minds of students frozen in the new age of immediate gratification. To implore better understandings of literary works and to draw out writing skills and potential. To shape, at the very least, an ability to read and comprehend as well as why it is important to be well written and well read.
Writing interest: Humanity. The preferred genre or writing method is speculative fiction or graphic novel. Thematically, stories or essays that wrestle with defining humanity inspire me to write. Defining purposes in life past interstellar or biological coincidences. Defining humanity without underselling the worth of fault.
It wasn’t until I was 25 that I realized my ultimate end goal was to become a published author and an educator. Thankfully I had fallen into a group of student journalists at the Community College of Rhode Island and surrounded myself with literary thinkers who thrived on the same interests as I had for my entire life. Together we founded a student newspaper, The Unfiltered Lens, and organized a singular student voice. I served as Entertainment Editor, writing several reviews of films, books, restaurants and plays, and even as Editor-in-Chief. Being surrounded by provocative thoughts and progressive ideas of student rights and censorship helped sway me to a degree in creative writing when I transferred to Rhode Island College after my graduation. mention modern literature with Steve Forleo?
At Rhode Island College I began to spread my wings in writing. While I had taken poetry and fiction writing courses at CCRI, it wasn’t until RIC that I was required to take critical creative writing courses and analyze fiction through several varied filters. My course in African-American Literature with Professor Scott (now Dean of the English Department at Rhode Island College) pushed me into the interests of speculative and science fictions. Here there is a sense of wonder that resides in the unknown; a potential for a bright future if only we could change the murky present. By marrying this growing interest in a very specific field of literature with my love for comic books, I began to seek out books and tutorials on writing my own comic book script. I discovered and worked with an artist in developing pages for the premiere issue of this book over several months and learned the ins-and-outs of co-operative storytelling, the benefits of visual writing, and also the importance of copyrights and registering creative properties.
During my time at RIC I also served as the Life Editor, the Entertainment Editor, and the Managing Editor. As Managing Editor I oversaw the entire editorial staff, set and enforced deadlines, and employed a unique spreadsheet system designed by the Managing Editor before me which kept track of the progress on photographers, events, articles, and layout.
Whenever your brain experiences harmful stimuli within the human body’s nervous system, it processes that information very quickly. This action is called nociception. Your brain sort of bookmarks these harmful stimuli and your body produces an ability to sort of “sense” harmful stimuli afterward, based on the data your brain crunched from your pain receptors within your nervous system. An even simplified version is when you bend over into your new car for the first time to get that thing you forgot and completely underestimate the distance of the roof of the car to your head. You slam your skull into it and it stings or throbs, and you immediately feel the pain. Now, your brain has learned to be more careful and be more aware of where the roof is in proximity to your head when getting out of the car. The more pain you receive in that area, the more concerned you are with avoiding it in the future. There appears to be three different kinds of pain receptors, cutaneous (skin), somatic (joints and/or bones), and visceral (body organs). A lot less is known about visceral and it’s almost always more dangerous. Somatic pain is described as a dull ache or a throbbing sensation, usually pretty localized on the body. Picture a break or a fracture. Cutaneous nociceptor receptors, the ones found in the dermis and epidermis of our skin tissue, indicate pain. There’s another kind of cutaneous receptor (thermoreceptor) for temperature. Pretty neat stuff how all of these intertwined systems send signals throughout the body; that is through the nervous system and into the brain, and from it our brain mines and collects the data almost instantaneously and delivers our bodies fight-or-flight reactions. The nociceptors (“pain receptors” from here on out) only respond to damage from chemical (e.g. really strong cleaning material on your skin, lemon juice in the eye) mechanical (e.g. a pinch or an abrasion), or the aforementioned thermal (heat and cold) stimulations.
What is fascinating to me is how long our bodies can stomach the reactions our brains want to give us based on the data they collect from these receptors, based solely on something silly like an emotional stimuli such as pride or guilt. Because I was too afraid to be that type of patient in a children’s hospital who cried all the time, I endured a lot of pain and tried very hard not to complain until it I either experienced severe discomfort, as in past a point of maintainable pain, or my immediate health felt at risk. Almost all of these instances involved my chest tubes. They were an ugly color, tinted like yellow boogers, and they often had a stench. This stench, combined with puss or oozing of mucus from the tissue where the tubes were protruding from my abdomen, were cleaned several times a day. I was assured that it was all perfectly natural but the sensations, smells, and tangling of tubes while I slept felt anything but natural. It felt like I was a science experiment; an inorganic life form being slapped back together slowly. I pictured Dr. Jonas operating on me looking at nurse Neena and saying, in a quiet rumble with his thick Australian accent:
“We have the technology. We can make him better than he was.”