Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Living the student life.

I had spent a week or two dedicated to getting some writing done every night, but I've been finding it more and more difficult to set aside a chunk of time to just sit and be creative. Acting as the president this year for the departmental association of East Asian Studies at McGill has given me a lot more miscellaneous tasks to get done-- emails to send, meetings to attend, events to organize-- and by the end of the day, I'm just exhausted to the point that I don't want to do anything but sit and... well, do nothing. But yes, this is basically all just one huge excuse for not having been productive in my writing as I would have liked to be, as usual.

In any case, aside from dealing with school-related activities and going to class, what I've been doing lately can basically be summarized by the following images.

Basically, a decent amount of calories. But on a more serious note, I suppose I've just been trying to distract myself with a bunch of things that I've been hoping would serve as forms of therapeutic activities, in one way or another. Socializing, having a few drinks, baking, doing some brainless reading... it's been quite enjoyable so far, although I'm not quite sure if it's really achieved anything. Probably not.

Speaking of which, "brainless reading" is a horrible oxymoron. But I can assure you that it was quite true and very applicable in this case. I have never been one for reading chick lit-- in fact, I had only come across the term "chick lit" when I actually looked up what kind of genre these books would fall under. Out of the many books I've read in the past, I have only ever read approximately three "chick lit" novels in my life (excluding stuff like The Babysitters' Club when I was in elementary school, and even that could go under 'mystery'), but I was feeling particularly stressed one day, and so, picked up two of these chick lit novels from Indigo.

I'm not sure what to say. I've read another book by this 'Sophie Kinsella' (which, I read, turns out to be a pseudonym) before back in my high school days. I've never read The Confessions of a Shopaholic, but I had happened to pick up another one of her books called Can you Keep a Secret? at a book fair when I was on vacation in Asia one summer, and desperate for anything in the English language. Then, years later, I picked up this one called Remember Me? at the bookstore last week. And well... the two books are basically the same. Office ladies stuck in a junior position until, by some stroke of luck, they meet a multimillionaire and off goes this ridiculous romance where-- for some unfathomable reason-- a regular, base-salary office lady with (really) minimal intelligence would suddenly attract a social elite, thus given another opportunity at "a better life", half supported by this horrid excuse of a romantic relationship and the other half by the idea that the guy is, in fact, very rich.

I don't know, I just felt dumber and dumber the longer I read this book. Which, fortunately, didn't take very long at all. But I wonder how these kinds of books manage to have such a huge audience-- I mean, sure, it can be seen as a sort of fantasy relevant to the billions of women working in cramped offices in dull, urban landscapes everyday, but... really? I don't understand. I just remember myself hoping throughout the entire novel that the protagonist didn't actually reflect the psyche of an average woman in the 21st century. It's a little horrifying and, well, embarrassing.

Anyway, I'm now reading my second Kirino Natsuo novel, called Grotesque. I read her other novel, Out, quite a few years back and I liked it. I'm only about two chapters into this one so far, but it's probable that things are going to get more, er, grotesque soon and I'm pretty excited. Kirino is a thriller, murder-mystery novelist and, from reviews I've heard and the one other book I've read from her, I'm hoping she might do a decent job in this one too.

I'm rather glad that I'm not taking any English courses this semester for once. I'm only 3 credits away from completing my English program, so I just have one more course on American literature in the Winter semester; in the meantime, I'm free from English classes this semester. In the past two years, I had been taking mostly English courses and often felt horribly overwhelmed by the sheer amount of reading and writing-- which is to be expected of an English program, I understand, and I appreciated this, just that it gave me no time at all to read anything for leisure and not for class. So I'm hoping to use this year to get some work outside of school done, while I still can.

Should be fun!

1 comment:

  1. No wonder you want to reread Coin Locker Babies along with us!