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Squills 12/19/19 - 1/12/20



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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:23 am
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Welcome to Squills, the official news bulletin of the Young Writers Society!
What will you find here? Tons of interesting news about YWS, including but not limited to: articles about writing, art, and the world of humanities; interviews with YWS members; shameless plugs; link round-ups; and opinionated columns.
And where will all of this come from? Take a look at our fantastic creative staff!

CREATIVE STAFF

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Editor-in-Chief
fraey

General Editors
EternalRain
CaptainJack

Friendly Neighborhood Robot
SquillsBot

Literary Reporter
CaptainJack

Community Reporter
Available - PM Squillsbot if interested

New BloodHound
ShadowVyper

Creativity Reporter
nogutsnoglory

Poetry Enchantress
alliyah

Resources Reporter
Available - PM Squillsbot if interested

Storybooks Status Reporter
Available - PM Squillsbot if interested

Writer's World Columnist
Available - PM Squillsbot if interested

Social Correspondent
EternalRain

Code Master
Available - PM Squillsbot if interested

General Reporters
neptune
writeasmile
Liberty
Available - PM Squillsbot if interested

Ghost Reporters
amelie
BiscuitsLeGuin
Clarity
elysian
Kanome
shaniac
TheWeirdoFromBeyond



Of course, our content can’t come only from our staff. We also depend on you to help keep Squills successful. You’re all a part of a writing community, after all. If you’re interested in submitting to Squills, pop on over to the Reader’s Corner to find out how you can get involved by contributing an article or participating in other Squills activities.

You can apply to become a Squillian Journalist by submitting a sample article to SquillsBot today!





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:24 am
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A LETTER TO THE SQUILLS READERS
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written by fraey < PM: >

Dear our lovely readers,

Hello from your edior-in-chief! I wanted to ring in the new year with an address to you all and explain a little about what I envision for Squills for the next few months. First off, I would like to sincerely thank each and every one of you who read our weekly publications, gives our articles likes, and shares our linked articles on the People tab. We as a group of writers would not be able to contribute the amount of time and effort and love into these articles without your continued and wonderful support.

One thing I would like to address is our fanclub, linked here. I want to revamp especially the writers' pages, so that you, the readers, can feel encouraged to send in any questions, comments, or feedback towards the articles we've created. I had started a short-lived "Weekly Questions" column which I want to bring back in some capacity, so that we can directly interact with the readers and gain valuable information on whether you like certain topics or what you would like to see in the future. If there are any authors you've been meaning to send a question to or simply compliment, please do so! Any of that warms our hearts.

As we say with each and every publication, if you would be interested in joing our crew, simply look over this helpful page Looking For Squills Writers to look at some of the possible roles and what you might be able to do in general. There are plenty of standard types you could choose between, such as a reporter or a certain columnist. If you have any questions, please send them to me as a PM, and we'll be sure to answer them in a speedy manner. Once you have an article you'd like to submit, please send it in a PM to @SquillsBot. Thank you!

Overall, I feel quite postive about the incoming year, and what type of articles we'll be able to come up with. I hope to see you here again!

With love,
fraey





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:25 am
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NEW YEAR ACTIVITIES
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written by alliyah < PM: >

The new year and new decade are here! The end of the last year and the beginning of the new year are always good times to reflect on what you'd like to happen in the year to come. On YWS people have done this in a few different ways on the site.

YWS Yearbook 2019

The YWS Yearbook has become a classic yearly tradition on the site, half the time people just claim a forum post and never get around to filling it out, but if they do fill it out, there are limitless ways to record your memories of the year.

So far (at the time of this article being written) there are only 13 entries, some finished, some still in progress. Unlike a few of the Holiday Activities, if you show up late to the Yearbook forum, you're still invited to participate - you're not too late!

So what would you write in an entry? People pretty much write whatever they like! Many people note significant memories or achievements they've made in their writing and on the site, others share more about their off-line lives from 2019, and most people do some sort of "shout-out section" where you tag people who have made an impact on your year from YWS.

Yearbook posts are neat to just reflect on just how much happens, but are also really neat to look at from year to year. I was reading through my 2017 and 2018 posts and it's funny how much has changed, and the different things I decided to take note of! I'd encourage everyone to jump in and write a bit about your year over in the Yearbook section.

New Year's Resolutions: 2020 Edition

New Year's Resolutions are an iconic part of New Year celebration for many, and on YWS it's no exception. @Jaybird started up a thread last year for resolutions, and it's come back around this year as well. People are recording both site and writing related goals, but also are making note of their life-goals too. Whether it be relationships, health, or school-work people are setting out their goals!

For some people, putting their goals out in a public place like a forum, or sending even just sending them to a friend adds a level of accountability and motivation for completing the goal - if that's the case for you, it might be a good idea to throw your goals up in the forum too!

2019 Survey: Blogs

The last New Year's activity you might want to take a look at is the Yearly Survey over in the blog section. This survey makes its rounds at the end of every year - and is a great chance to look back on the year and explore different significant parts about it. I really enjoy reading other peoples' entries for the survey too, as it's just interesting to read a bit about how people spent the year, and their attitude going into the next one.

Here's the survey questions below if you'd like to try it out yourself:
Spoiler! :

1: What did you do in 2019 that you’d never done before?

2: Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

3: Did anyone close to you give birth?

4: Did anyone close to you die?

5: What countries did you visit?

6: What would you like to have in 2020 that you lacked in 2019?

7: What dates from 2019 will remain etched upon your memory and why?

8: What was your biggest achievement of the year?

9: What was your biggest failure?

10: Did you suffer illness or injury?

11: What was the best thing you bought?

12: Whose behavior merited celebration?

13: Whose behavior made you appalled?

14: Where did most of your money go?

15: What did you get really, really, really excited about?

16: What song will always remind you of 2019?

17: Compared to this time last year, are you: (a) happier or sadder? (b) thinner or fatter? (c) richer or poorer?

18: What do you wish you’d done more of?

19: What do you wish you’d done less of?

20: How did you spend Christmas?

21: Did you fall in love in 2019?

22: What was your favorite TV program?

23: Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

24: What was the best book you read?

25: What was your greatest musical discovery?

26: What did you want and get?

27: What did you want and not get?

28: What was your favorite film of this year?

29: What one thing made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

30: How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2019?

31: What kept you sane?

32: Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

33: What political issue stirred you the most?

34: Who did you miss?

35: Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2019.

36: Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

And that wraps up the New Year YWS activities! Cheers to a great year!





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:25 am
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MY FAVORITE READS OF 2019
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written by EternalRain < PM: >

Today I’ll be listing my favorite books of 2019. My goal in 2019 was to read 35 books and I didn’t hit it as planned; instead, I read only 26. But, I came out of the year with some books that mesmerized me, made me think, or just gave me overall good vibes. So, I decided to pick a few of my personal favorites that I read to share with the Squills readers as recommendations or, if none pique your interest, to simply ignore. If you also want to share your top books of the year, feel free to post on your wall a list of your personalized favorites.

In no particular order, here are my favorite reads of 2019:

1. Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone
    Genre: YA contemporary
    Every Last Word: touching, beautiful, poetic, and emotional. This story follows Sam, one of the popular, “Mean Girls” at her school with a heavyweight secret she’s kept from her friends: she struggles with OCD. And then she meets Caroline, who introduces her to Poet’s Corner, where she discovers a whole new side of herself.

2. Greenglass House by Kate Milford
    Genre: Middle grade fantasy
    Greenglass House is a fun mystery and fantastical novel set in a hotel at the top of a mountain that houses criminals. But when odd guests start showing up in the usual quiet of the winter and objects go missing Milo, the innkeeper’s son, and Meddy, the cook’s daughter, are determined to figure it all out.


3. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
    Genre: YA fantasy
    Oh boy! Six of Crows is a fantasy story full of rich characterization and beautiful prose. Criminal prodigy Kaz is offered crazy money to pull off a deadly heist, so he enlists the help of his deadly crew to help him pull it off.


4. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
    Genre: mystery
    And Then There Were None is a mystery book like no other. This was my first Agatha Christie novel and wow, did I enjoy it! A group of strangers are invited to a private island, but as the days go on, one by one they fall by murder.


5. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
    Genre: Gothic/horror
    I read Frankenstein for school and loved it more than I thought I would. I didn’t have high expectations to begin with, but I found the story and writing captivating! As many of you know, it follows Victor Frankenstein, the scientist who creates this “monster”, and how both Frankenstein and his monster grapple with this new creation.


Don't forget, you can share the best books you read this past year on your wall! Or, if any of my favorites caught your eye, you can research more about them online for extended blurbs.

Lastly, you can join the PawPrints club to track your reading, see what everyone else is reading, earn some neat sparkly badges, and become the PawPrints All Star Reader of the Month!





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:27 am
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#20in20
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written by alliyah < PM: >

You may have seen the #20in20 hashtag making the rounds around the site lately, it's a new one started up by @ShadowVyper that echoes a hashtag #15in15 that @niteowl started back in 2015. The goal of #20in20 is for writers who are committing to it to write at least 20 minutes every day. For those that are doing the challenge they can update their walls everyday (or as often as they like) with what they're writing. So far there's been a lot of people who've said they're up to the challenge and have been updating their walls too. I even decided to jump into the fun and try out the #20in20 challenge myself. The Squills Newsroom was able to get ShadowVyper for an interview, and here's what she had to say!

alliyah: Why did you decide to start up the #20in20 challenge?


ShadowVyper: It was kind of a mixture of things. For one, I noticed what a boost there was in the site activity in the People Tab for the #mydecade and #oldestworkchallenge tags, and enjoyed getting to read what everyone had to say for them.

And then a few days before the start of the new year, I got a notification from someone making a wall post in the LMS club. I've sort of lost track of that club since I lost so early this round, and wondered if that was notification that another round would be starting soon. It wasn't, but it made me start thinking about how I wish I had another challenge that would motivate me to write regularly -- and I happened to remember niteowl's #15in15 Challenge from a few years ago. It was the same basic idea -- write for 15 minutes every day in 2015. Since we're on another year that's a multiple of 5, having a #20in20 Challenge seemed fitting.


a: That makes sense! Why do you think it's good to write daily, is this something you've tried yourself before?


S: I mean I definitely think that writing isn't an inherent skill that some people are born with and some people aren't -- it's a craft, and it needs to be practiced regularly if you want to get better at it. Of course life happens and we're not always going to have time every single day, but if you can build the habit of writing even a little bit as often as possible it'll make it easier for you to stay "in the groove" so to speak and beat that oh-so-dreaded writer's block. I'm personally fairly terrible about being a consistent writer -- I'll have bursts of creativity where I pump out multiple chapters over the course of a week or a few weeks and then go months without writing. But it's something I'm hoping to get better at myself, so hopefully this challenge will help me become more regular, too!

a: So for the challenge, what counts as writing? For instance does writing these interview questions count?


S: Honestly, the vision I had for #20in20 was for it to be a very individualized sort of challenge. What I mean by that is that I want this to serve people how is most helpful to them. If counting writing your essay for school today motivates you to write a poem tomorrow, great! If being stricter about what you count helps you stay focused, so you only count purely creative writing pursuits, then that's also great! Personally, I wouldn't count something like this as my #20in20 because this feels more like chatting than writing. Technically, yes, I'm typing out my responses -- but I don't really think things like texting or emailing counts as writing. Ideally, your #20in20 would have some sort of creative aspect -- even if what you're creating is something personal, like a journal, or academic, like an essay or a thesis.

a: Luckily I've already done my #20in20 entry today so won't need to count this! Anyways, I've gotta ask, are there any prizes for completing the challenge?


S: Bragging rights ;) But also yes, I'm in the process of trying to come up with concrete rewards for all of the effort you lovely people are dumping into this challenge! I will definitely be sporadically awarding points as this challenge stretches on, to those people who continue being fairly consistent with it. And I'm also looking into creating Badges that go along with it as well... The more #20in20 progress you make, the cooler your rewards will be!

a: And last, do you have any advice to those who are trying to tackle it?


S: My advice would be to immerse yourself in the community! YWS is the perfect place to fully dive into for a Challenge like this. Join write-ins, chat with people on walls/PMs, talk out your ideas and listen to other people talk about theirs. It's already been so motivating to me to see how many people have jumped on this challenge! I've been kind of following the tag and it's incredible how many different ways there are to make full use of this opporunity. @niteowl and @BluesClues doing their Adult Responsibilities of articles and cover letters; @EternalRain and @Riellehn writing Squills articles and scholarship essays; @Jaybird and @PrincessInk doing SB posts; @alliyah and @Querencia poet-ing; @mellifera, @AtlasW, @LZPianoGirl, @Messenger, @imaginer2018, @MeherazulAzim16, @StellaThomas, (and me) working on various aspects of our stories ... it's so interesting to me getting to read all of these new things being created through the challenge!

If you ever feel yourself getting overwhelmed to discouraged, an encouraging word is just a message away. So I encourage you to reach out and use this as an opportunity to make friends! I know that I'd welcome a chat with anyone about their #20in20 progress, and I assume that's true for everyone else on the site as well!


Thanks for coming up with this neat challenge Shady!

You can read more information about #20in20 from Shadowvyper's original forum post right here .





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:28 am
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NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS: A PERSPECTIVE

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written by neptune< PM: >

With the new year already started, I wanted to dive into the idea of New Year’s resolutions, as well as share my perspective on them! The new year is a great time to reflect back on goals set at the beginning of the year, and move on to generate a new list of resolutions. YWS even has its own thread for sharing your own 2020 resolutions . I know that I personally love making goals for myself at the beginning of the year — and knowing that others are setting goals for themselves too is so encouraging (especially in a community of writers like YWS).

Resolutions are a refreshing chance to review the past year and plan to grow for the future year. While creating a list of goals to achieve can feel daunting, the new year also inspires and motivates me. The feeling of being put together and planning for the future is so appealing to me, too, especially when I’m generally a mess.

For me, New Year's resolutions are all about change, growth, and self-improvement. By physically writing a goal down, I feel more inclined to do something and end the year being able to say ”I did it”. I like the challenge of a goal - something to push me out of my comfort zone - that allows me to accomplish something. For example, this year I am challenging myself to do NaPo, something a little out of my comfort zone. I feel that setting goals in the new year allows for a generally more productive year, simply by putting plans in action.

While resolutions can be helpful to organize the start of the year, I also feel it’s easy for me to forget about them. I really admire people who can keep themselves accountable for their goals; I often have trouble in doing so. And because I can so easily forget about my resolutions, I find it creates room for disappointment at the end of the year when I feel as though I simply “have not made progress” because I haven’t achieved as many personal goals as I had hoped.

Despite any negative views I have presented about resolutions, I think they are a good starting point for a new year. One can argue that the New Year is just a glorified time to make a list of resolutions, but when it comes down to it, I think it’s a great time to set goals: with a new year, there should come new challenges and goals.

However, if there is one thing I have learned from New Year’s resolutions, it’s that goals take hard work to achieve, and it’s not a loss if you don’t complete all your goals by a certain time - it’s progress! After all, making resolutions is just the start - it’s the journey that's the most important!

Here’s to 2020 and to working towards all of our goals!





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:30 am
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NEW ARRIVALS
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written by EternalRain < PM: >

Take a moment to welcome this week’s newest members to the site!

@-BlackThorne- is well on their way to their second review star! They’re also posting their supernatural novel, Butterfly Wings. You can check out the latest chapter Chapter 5 - Bones here, or head back to Prologue - Spores to start from the beginning.

@TurtleslikeTea has been making their way around the site and even posted a thread in the Research forum, inquiring about Relationships with mothers .

@tgham99 has already written 21 reviews since joining, with 8 reviews this month ranking them at #2 in the leaderboards for January!

Other members who haven't had a chance to be as active, but are no less a member of our family are...


@fertysadoma • @Beccadekker • @arturorrodgers • @ClaytonCunda • @Musizca_Hit • @jackjhuff • @JasonWop • @hertysamolos3 • @albertogcarrillo • @christianfmiller • @henry123 • @tianaaubarton • @Hell_mage_JASS • @Florenci • @msgravy@NamsKannan • @Monthra • @Gudrun38 • @Remediosdc • @CharlieW • @coltenmford • @juliedhicks • @madisynmwhitaker • @Sobenowleld • @austindho • @Lorenzofup • @Vitmox • @serpninja • @PinkJupiter • @NikolanS • @newhero • @Poklodot • @ramblerzs • @lock171bf • @Dorissunty • @InisseKit • @smotrump • @BertaNus • @LoganCrabtree@Embarrassedcandy@Farfaraway • @Margaret • @sillyslang





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:31 am
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SHAMELESS PLUGS
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written by SquillsBot < PM: >

We love to run articles and questions, but we also love to advertise for you. Let people know about your new blog, a poem or story you’re looking for reviews on, or a forum thread you’d like more traffic on through Squills’ Shameless Plugs. PM @SquillsBot with the exact formatting of your advertisement, contained in the following code.

Code: Select all
Place advertisement here. Make sure you include a title!

And now for this week's Shameless Plugs!


~~~


Submit to the Queer as in F*** You magazine!

QAIFY is an alternative compzine published digitally every three months and compiled into a physical copy every year. It features poetry, prose, serials, art, and photography reflecting themes of identity, feminism, womanhood, queerness, love, loss, punkness, and (queer) sex ed, as well as whatever else.

Find submission guidelines here, and send your own submissions to queerasineffyou.zine@gmail.com......


~~~



Review Rampage

Do you like competitions? Do you like easy ways to make extra points? Then read on!

The #ReviewRampage is a competition hosted by @ShadowVyper and @Omnom that is a Go-At-Your-Own-Pace review challenge. You set your own review goals and wagers, then race against time to see if you can get done in time. Or, for the more competitive spirits out there, you can also duel against your fellow Rampagers.

Go check out the Q&A Forum for more information and then head on over to the Entry Forum to claim your place as a Rampager.

Get your Rampage on!



~~~



Want to be a part of Squills, the YWS newsletter? Perfect! We want you. You can find more information here, and you can apply now by sending a sample article to SquillsBot's PM.


~~~


That's all folks~ Now send us yours.





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Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:32 am
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SUBSCRIBERS
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written by SquillsBot < PM: >

Find an enspoiler-ed a list of our subscribers!
Spoiler! :

@SquillsBot@Carina@ShadowVyper@ArcticMonkey@Hannah@KingLucifer@Caesar@Veeren@megsug@StoneHeart@Skydreamer@Love@Aley@Rydia@Alpha@skorlir@KnightTeen@ChildOfNowhere@neko@Aquila90@DudeMcGuy@kayfortnight@Cole@Blackwood@manisha@fortis@Gardevite@cgirl1118@KittyCatMeow@Willard@ChocoCookie@carbonCore@Auxiira@Iggy@Blues@Paracosm@Sparkle@FireFox@Dakushau@deleted5@wizkid515@yubbies21@PiesAreSquared@FatCowsSis@CelticaNoir@BenFranks@TimmyJake@whitewolfpuppy@WallFlower@Magenta@BrittanyNicole@GoldFlame@Messenger@ThereseCricket@TriSARAHtops@Ventomology@Evander@WillowPaw1@Laure@TakeThatYouFiend@RoseAndThorn@Cheetah@NicoleBri@Pompadour@Zontafer@QueenOfWords@Crimsona@vluvswriting@GreenTulip@Audy@EllaBliss@eldEr@Deanie@lostthought@CesareBorgia@Omnom@Morrigan@AfterTheStorm@AstralHunter@Arcticus@Wolfical@Pamplemousse@Sassafras@gia2505@ExOmelas@SkyeWalker@Noelle@elysian@TinkerTwaggy@kingofeli@SpiritedWolfe@malachitear@GeeLyria@AdmiralKat@Clickduncake@yellow@Seraphinaxx@Pretzelstick@WritingWolf@EternalRain@Tuesday@Dragongirl@JKHatt@Lucia@donizback •@Querencia • @BlueSunset@artybirdy@IncohesiveScribbles@cleverclogs@MLanders@ClackFlip@PickledChrissy@racket@Lorelie@Gravity@BluesClues • @hermione315@Steggy@willachilles@tintomara138@AmatuerWritings@TheLittlePrince@TheForgottenKing@Shoneja123 • @Jaybird • @Mea@klennon14@fandomsNmusic@Meerkat@HolographicLadybug@Sevro@DragonWriter22@RippleGylf@amelie@Morrigun@Megrim@Kazumi@inktopus@OreosAreLife@Saruka@rosette@PastelSlushie@Strident@darklady@Jashael@TheBlueCat@Thundahguy@ZeldaIsSheik@Lives4Christ24@manilla@Danni88@Elinor@fishsashimi@TheWeirdoFromBeyond@shaniac@neptune@Storybraniac@WritingPrincess@Traves@JosephHGeorge@Amabilia@Fantascifi66@paperforest@alliyah@Liberty@Dossereana@AtlasW@EverLight

Do you, too, want to be enspoiler-ed and receive a personal weekly notification when the Squills newsletter is posted? Shoot a PM over to SquillsBot to let him know, and you'll be pinged along with the next issue!








When you cut pieces out of the truth to avoid looking like a fool, you end up looking like a moron instead.
— Robin Hobb