Your Brain on Social Media

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Social media has become an activity that has been ingrained into our daily routines and culture. We Instagram our food, Facebook chat our friends, tweet our feelings; social media has become, in a way, an extension of our inner workings.

Recently, AsapScience, a popular YouTube channel, created an informational video about five ways social media is affecting our brains, both the good and the bad. Since it is such an influential part of our lives, I definitely recommend you check out this article from Huffington Post, as well as the video itself.

 

8 Tips from Mr. Vonnegut

http://www.brainpickings.org/2013/01/14/how-to-write-with-style-kurt-vonnegut/

In 1985, Kurt Vonnegut provided writers with valuable insights in his essay, “How to Write with Style,” part of the anthology How to Use the Power of the Written Word.

As a writer, finding your voice in the written word can be a struggle; I know I’m still searching for mine. We read and hear the works of those we admire, and it can be discouraging because their voice  are clear in their words and sometimes ours isn’t as developed. However, in Mr. Vonnegut’s essay, he lists 8 rules that construct great, stylistic writing, that could definitely benefit the novice writer, or a writer embarking on a stylistic pilgrimage.

In this article from Brain Pickings, Maria Popova writes of Mr. Vonnegut’s writing advice, as well as the 8 rules aforementioned rules. For me, the most important rule was 5, in which he stressed the importance of sounding like yourself.

There are so many writers whose styles I admire. I love the satirical sass of David Sedaris and the confessional prose of Elizabeth Wurtzel. Typically, the works of those we admire is somewhere within us, too; we just need to render it in a way that is genuine to ourselves.

If you had to describe your own work, what words would you use? It’s not easy, is it? In a way, I believe that our voices are ever evolving; we change and so does our writing. But we know when our writing is true to ourselves or not; it’s sticking to the sincerity that will keep us strong as writers.

Check Your Hashtags

DiGiorno Scandal

Social media is a tricky thing. It can make or break you. This past week gave the world a cautionary tale of how quickly social media can go bad.

DiGiorno Pizza is known for their witty tweets and have gained themselves many followers because of it. However, this past Monday, DiGiorno made the colossal blunder by not checking their hashtags before tweeting “#WhyIStayed You had pizza.” #WhyIStayed and #WhyILeft are hashtags for victims of domestic abuse to share their heartbreaking and inspiring stories. The person operating DiGiorno’s twitter account could have saved themselves a job if they just would have went to the hashtag page and scanned the first three stories.

So, don’t be a DiGiorno and just take the 5 extra seconds to check out your hashtags before using them.

Tell Me To Keep Calm One More Time…

Keep Calm and Carry On

Seriously, do it. See what happens.

Despite my personal aversion to the “Keep Calm and Carry On” memes, they do have quite the interesting origin.

“Keep Calm and Carry On,” is a catchphrase from a WWII British safety poster that was commissioned in 1939 by the provisional Ministry of Information in England following two other inspirational posters including “Freedom Is In Peril, Defend It With All Your Might” and “Your Courage, Your Cheerfulness, Your Resolution Will Bring Us Victory.” After one of the few original posters was miraculously recovered and placed in a British bookshop in 2000, the motivational message was shared online and ended up inspiring a series of memes that have taken over the internet and t-shirts all over the globe.

For more on “Keep Calm and Carry On”, and many other memes, go to knowyourmeme.com.