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Photo by Louis Hansel @shotsoflouis on Unsplash

It is the end of week one and I have written 6160 words. Yet, the weekly events and appointments turned my Blogging WriMo into a frenzy of academic papers that I had to hand in for my Master’s Degree. To understand the level of stress that this week was you must picture that I had to write complete, polished papers to hand in every.single.day.of.the.week and a presentation. And some videos. And assigned reading for homework, of course. Oh, and the other 3 essays I handed in on the last 3 days of October, which didn’t count for the challenge.

This meant that my writing became an all-consuming task and one that had me working from 6 am to midnight almost every day, taking some breaks between long continuous hours of work. You may think that I was not working “smarter” but the reality is that for the level of my academic ambition this is the right time. I’m not advocating for dedicating countless hours a day to study because that is ridiculous but if you must produce a good essay, no matter how short, every day, then yes, you need several hours to do all the reading, research, writing, and editing it takes to get a perfect score. …


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Photo by freestocks on Unsplash

In Gothic literature, the forest is an interstitial space between the known and the unknown; its liminality either gives entrance to or holds in its core the supernatural. In fairytales, the unknown can be threatening or miraculous and its victims are often located in the outside borders of the woods. I pretend to analyze the different representations of the forest and the effect it has on its surroundings in the fairytale “Hansel and Gretel” by the Grimm brothers and in the movie The Witch by Robert Eggers. …


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Happy Halloween everyone! October has come to its end and the end of a very unpredictable year is upon us. And what have I, your masochistic blogger decided to do? Add one (ok two) more projects to my overflowing to-do list. I can’t help it, whenever I encounter something worth pursuing, I forget about the banalities of time constraints and relaxation to embark on new adventures. Hopefully, these ones will be smoothly mixed with the work I already have to do for university and each will enrich the other.

NANOWRIMO OR, AS I NAMED IT, THE BLOGGING WRIMO

Lately, I have felt comfort in writing. Moreover, I have felt comfort in certain types of writing, namely, Ryan Holiday’s newsletter and R.C. Waldun’s. I have also been contemplating the idea of bringing my love for books, which I shared on my booktube channel, and transforming into something that went beyond. I want to start a movement and share “life lessons” that I’ve learned from the things I read, watch, encounter. Going beyond the book review, I want to bring Romanticism into the daily lives of people and of myself. Thus, I signed up for this year's Nanowrimo to kickstart my writing here in Medium. My goal is to write 50,000 words but instead of following the format of a novel, I will be writing blog posts…


Gothic Book Recommendations

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Gothic literature is my favorite genre because of the aesthetically pleasing, passionate exploration of the fears of humanity. Here are my top 11 books:

Dracula by Bram Stoker


I have been living in Venice for one year (technically, right now I’m in Graz on a mobility semester but you get it). It has been a breathtaking experience and one that has changed my life forever. I have fallen in love with Venice as I had never fallen for any city before; it is the place that I call home. Here are 5 ways (comical and serious) in which the city has changed me:

Boats and walking over cars

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I was raised in Mexico City and I always liked cars. Since I was a girl I dreamt of the moment I could get a driver’s license and a car of my own. When I finally purchased Vlad (a beautiful Seat Ibiza Sport 2007 in the color “emocion red”) I was the happiest girl ever. I cried so much when I had to sell my car to part a percentage of my stay in Venice (I still miss you, my sweet Vlad). But after living in Venice, cars no longer hold any appeal to me. Sure, they are extremely convenient, and sure, if I ever get the money to have Vlad II I will not hesitate because the train can only get you so far in life, but other than that, I don’t like cities with lots of cars anymore. There is so much noise, pollution, and craziness involved. I love walking in Venice because I don’t have to focus on crossing the street, waiting for the light to turn, or anything at all. Nothing stops you from your journey. Once you have lived in a city where the only means of transportation are boats or your feet, you really learn to love it. Of course, Venice also goes mainland and I use the bus to get to places there, but there’s something incredibly refreshing about arriving at the lagoon and having cars disappear from your life. …


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I am a person that functions on self-defined binaries of life. Often extreme opposites. People are either my super close best friends or indifferent acquaintances. Entertainment produces either an obsessive, passionate, personal response in me or non-attachment, distaste, oblivion (whether that is music, movies, books, series, or anything else). You might be thinking that I am some sort of weirdo but that’s how I’ve been all my life. My mom always says that since I was a child, I have been very “strict” in the beliefs that I commit to. And by “child” I mean two-year-old me who already got into trouble for arguing with her fellow toddlers about what she believed was morally right and wrong in the world. Most of these strict beliefs are really just personal opinions on the most stupid, banal things that you can imagine. But that is how I am. I guess the meaning behind my name, “God is my judge”, wasn’t so far off the mark. I define myself as an atheist, although I believe in a greater thing, whatever that is. …


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Photo by Patrick Robert Doyle on Unsplash

I have a love-hate for Dark Academia. What started as a quiet trend on Tumblr, soon took its aesthetic vision to Instagram, Pinterest, and now, it is a trend that is becoming increasingly popular. From videos on “how to turn your bedroom into Dark Academia” to “Dark Academia lookbooks”, to “how to be Dark Academia”, the movement has taken over the internet. And while I appreciate anything that inspires a love for learning, I have a mixture of feelings about this trend.

You see, the “Dark Academia aesthetic” existed for decades, perhaps even centuries, before someone coined the name and turned it into an online trend. It existed in the Arts & Humanities university buildings, art schools, music schools, bookstores, and in the cafes where people passionate about philology, literature, and art would gather to discuss their view of the world. As an English major, I lived the aesthetic during my Bachelor’s degree. But more importantly, I lived its essence, the passion for learning, for creating, for studying architecture, and analyzing paintings, and writing essays about literature. …


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Fondazione Giorgio Cini; my favorite library in the world.

When will you start calling yourself a writer? This is the question that has been haunting me for what seems like an unnamable stretch of time. After all those university essays, journals, digital notes, failed blogs, self-publishing shenanigans, challenges, prompts, Instagram captions, scraps of papers, abandoned first chapters… surely I should have abandoned the idea; yet the thunderstorm of plots, couplets, and images that I have forced into oblivion refuse to let go.

When will you start calling yourself a writer? when you are good enough? popular enough? well-read enough?

When will you start calling yourself a writer? when your words are forwarded by the validating seal of an institution? when your stats show the abstract readers behind the screen? …


A simple trick to save you time and energy

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Photo by Ryan Moreno on Unsplash

I believe in planning and organization. It clears my mind and allows me to think, create, and most important of all, be productive. You can usually find me trying to learn the latest discovery to maximize time management, testing a new organization system, and the like. For the past six years I’ve been on a minimalist journey, pairing down my possessions, asking what my essentials are.

In terms of clothing, I have tried Project 333, the 37-item wardrobe, and my favorite so far, and more. I’ve read that decision fatigue can be avoided by automating certain tasks or habits, that great people like Obama, Jobs, and Zuckerberg and also Matt D’Avella have resorted to wearing the same outfit every day. While I cannot go down that road, I’ve discovered the benefits of planning my outfit for the following day. Which lead me to think what would happen if I planned my outfits for the entire week. It completely revolutionized my mornings. …


The unabridged experience of living with 270 people

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Photo by Bailey Scully on Unsplash

I have been living in a dorm ever since moving to Venice, Italy four months ago. Last September 8th, I stepped inside the building that would become my home for at least a year, the overwhelming feelings of leaving home coming down my shoulders as I carried my heavy luggage on my own, opened the door of my room/house/everything and contemplated its bareness. The sense of unfamiliarity made me shed some tears (I had left my parents at the other side of the world) and I thought that surely I had made a mistake in coming at all. But once I overcame the initial feelings, I set out to make that place my own. It has been a process of learning, adapting, growing, being frustrated, and ultimately, enjoying it. Here’s life inside a dorm, unabridged. …

About

Dany Szelsky

Self acclaimed romantic youth and elysianer. ”The artist is the creator of beautiful things. To reveal art and conceal the artist is art’s aim” — Oscar Wilde 🥀

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