Halloween at Drexel

Halloween is the time of year where people enjoy getting scared and dressing up as creepy, adorable, or downright hilarious characters. It’s also the time for social events comprised of monsters, pumpkins, and of course, candy. Now, while we may not be trick-or-treating anymore, there are still a lot of fun activities happening on Drexel’s campus this October.

On the 30th of this month, Maya Literary Magazine is hosting its own event in the Van Rensselaer ballroom. It’ll be from 7-sara210pm and there will be food, games, and more! Make sure to wear your favorite costume and compete in the games to win awesome prizes. Anyone can come and spend the night in the spooked out ballroom of Van R. It’ll be a great Halloween party right before everyone’s favorite holiday!

Van Rensselaer is truly the place to be this Halloween, because on October 28th or 29th the Van R Project is hosting the Monster Ball for select resident halls. So if you live in Van R, Race, Towers, or Kelly feel free to come. It’s a free event with food, music, and a costume contest, so dress in your cutest, funniest or most ghoulish costume and make your freshman Halloween one you will never forget! The party should last from 6-8pm.

If parties aren’t your thing, the Campus Activities Board (CAB) is also hosting a couple of Halloween themed events this month. On the 24th, from 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM they will be taking a trip to Six Flags Great Adventure for Fright Fest. The tickets are $25 each and the bus will be leaving from outside Towers Hall at 11:00 AM.  If you’re interested you can contact CAB through their email, cab@drexel.edu.

The CAB is also organizing a trip for the Old City Ghost Tour. It’s a haunted and thrill-filled journey through Old City, so if sara3you like spooky walking tours by candlelight, this is the event for you! It’s on October 29th and the event will focus on historically accurate information combined with myths and popular urban legends. Tickets are $5 per person with student ID and you can visit the CAB Office in MacAlister Hall to purchase them. On the day of the event, participating students will meet at the 34th St. station at 7:00 pm to travel together to Old City. The event is estimated to be about 75-90 minutes long.

If you’re an individual who prefers staying home and watching spooky movies, please consider coming out and supporting Drexel’s Co-Op Theater Company as they present From Beneath it Lurks. It’s directed and created by Adrienne Mackay in collaboration with members of the Co-Op theater company. The production follows a rag tag team of storytellers as they bring to life the monstrous stories that could only be inspired by H.P. Lovecraft’s unholy creations. As the flyers seen around campus say, the show will “put the audience right in the very evil that unearths the limits of the human soul.” If you’re interested the shows will take place in the URBN Center Annex Black Box Theater, 3401 Filbert Street on:

October 29 – 8PM
October 30 – 8PM
October 31 – 7PM
October 31 – 10PM
and        November 1 – 2PM

Tickets are $5 for Drexel Students/Faculty and Staff with ID, $10 for Non-Drexel Students, and $15 for General Admission. To purchase tickets please go to cooptheater.westphal.drexel.edu.

In all, no matter what activities you’re interested in there is something for you this Halloween. So grab some friends, some candy, and your favorite costume accessory and hit the Drexel campus! We hope to see you all at the Maya party on the 30th!

-Sara Nichterlein

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Tackling Writer’s Block

tools-to-battle-writers-blockThere are endless possibilities for what you can write and how you can write it. You can create any story in the world, write any poem, explore any kind of unique idea that you have. Any amazing string of words is yours to put together; any fantastic new universe is yours to create. There are no limitations. At least, there’s shouldn’t be. So why does it sometimes feel like there’s absolutely nothing that you can write about? Where are these perceived limitations in your mind coming from? What can you do to combat it?

Writer’s block. The sickness that every writer doesn’t want to catch. I’ve sat in front of the computer for hours, trying to figure out what to write. Where to start. What to make happen next. Do I want to write poetry today? Do I want to start a new short story? What about the fifteen other stories I have that I never finished?

As an English major also involved in organizations that involve writing, I find myself constantly writing. But when I decide to write for something that isn’t a class or an organization, I’m left staring at a blank word document and wondering where to even begin. You’ve probably felt the nervousness from realizing you don’t know what to write, and the frustration when the idea still doesn’t come to you. So what can you do?

I know that free writing, brainstorming, is an easy way to figure out what even to begin writing. My creative writing teacher in high school taught me the trick of sitting with the pen and paper (or at the keyboard) and nonstop writing whatever comes to mind, even if it’s just “I don’t know what to write,” for seven minutes. I have generated some beautiful ideas from brainstorming and free writing before, and I highly recommend them!

writers-blockIf brainstorming doesn’t work, others suggest getting away from the writing and doing something else. “Take a walk, take a bath, go to sleep, make a pie, draw, listen to music, meditate, exercise; whatever you do, don’t just stick there scowling at the problem.” Hilary Benton said about what to do when one gets writer’s block. Just make sure you go back to writing, and don’t go somewhere with other people or “other’s people’s words will pour in where your lost words should be.” http://flavorwire.com/343207/13-famous-writers-on-overcoming-writers-block/10 Take this time when you don’t know what to write to get all of your other chores and obligations over with. Then, you have the rest of the night to get writing done with nothing weighing on your mind that you have to do!

According to Chuck Sambuchino from Writer’s Digest, drinking half a glass of water before bed, telling the half-empty glass your aspirations for being a fantastic writer, and then finishing the glass of water the next morning will help you overcome writer’s block. http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/guide-to-literary-agents/7-ways-to-overcome-writers-block It’s sounds a little silly, but it’s worth a shot, isn’t it?

For those who like to be super organized, outlines and flow charts can also help. This can be like insurance for later; if you know what you’re going to write, and in what order, you won’t find yourself stuck thinking, “what next?” However, don’t be afraid of the rigidness of an outline. You’re not married to it. It can always be altered, or even discarded, later on!

If you’re anything like me, it might be hard to get over your perceived audience when you’re writing, which can lead to it being tricky to overcome writer’s block. The most important thing to remember is that what you’re writing right now does not have to be read by anybody until you have edited or rewritten it — or maybe not at all. I know I personally feel freaked out when I’m writing something because all I can imagine is a reader criticizing my writing. This clams me up and I end up unable to write anything at all. I can’t tell you how to get over your own personal hurdles, but personally, I just remember that I’m in control. I’m in control of what is written and I get to control who reads it. And if people think what I write sucks, who cares? You just have to remember that it’s better than being too afraid to write anything at all.

I’ve gotten into dry spells that have lasted an embarrassingly long time. It took switching my primary routine of writing (on a laptop during the daytime) to a new one (writing in a small notebook before bed) for me to find my voice again and start producing things I want to write. Keep a positive mind — your writing career isn’t over, and you will find a way out of this temporary block!

Sarah Jamack