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Ugh, my motivation for school is seriously dead right now.  I just don't have it in me.  I think most of that is due to the fact that I had an ton of work to do this past week.  Midterms and all that, plus I had this paper to write about interviewing a social worker.  The interview itself actually ended up being really cool.  I did that in February and really should have just written the paper right after I did it instead of slacking off and waiting until the last minute.  Especially since I decided to interview someone my instructor used to work with at the agency she used to work for.  Now I'm freaking out that I procrastinated too much and since my professor used to work there, maybe she's going to be extra judgmental or something if I screw up some of the details.  I don't know. I also had three tests, one of which was a statistics test.  I spent all my time studying for that and ended up getting a perfect score on it, which is fantastic.  Or it would be, except the fact that I was so worried about the math that I didn't study at all for my two social work tests and ended up with low 80s on both of those.  Whatever.  Lord knows I need the A in statistics more than I do in the other classes, so I'm still celebrating.  And by celebrating, I mean that I am spending the entire day doing absolutely nothing related to school at all (well, aside from this short paragraph I have to write for homework, but that's it).  The plan is to edit a huge chunk of my novel today since I didn't get any of it done last week.

Spring Break is next week though, so if I can just hang in there a few more days, I'll be fine.  I don't have too much work to do this week, so that helps.  I decided not to pick up any shifts at work for Spring Break because I really just want a break, and I seriously need to do some spring cleaning.  This place is a mess.  Since we are planning on moving out this summer, the landlords are going to try and sell the house, which means people will possibly be coming through to look at it and it would be best if it didn't like like a family of crazy monster people lived here.  Seriously though, housework is just not my thing.  As long as the place is in decent shape, I'm happy.  I saw this poem somewhere that was basically like, "Dust if you must, but at the end of the day, there are things that are way more important."  That's basically my whole philosophy on life.  I'm not going to waste all my spare time making my house immaculate. And I just gave up trying to keep up with picking up after Piper and Lexi because it's impossible.  Regardless, a good spring cleaning is probably long overdue.  I figure if I do one or two rooms a day, I can have the whole thing done by the end of the week.

I'm also excited to start working on some short stories and other projects during spring break.  I'll be done editing the novel and hopefully will have shipped it off to some beta readers by next Monday, so I've been trying to think of what to do next.  I've just been feeling kind of discouraged with it lately.  It still needs so much work and lately, every time I look at it, I feel like it sucks and that I'm a failure.  Obviously that's not healthy so I think I just need to back off and take a break from it for a while, shift gears and work on something else.  I've got a few different ideas for short stories I want to write so I'll probably try to get some of those done and then work on editing them, maybe have one or two ready to submit to literary magazines or something in a few months.  I don't know.  A girl can dream, right?  And hopefully, with some new feedback from new beta readers, I'll be able to figure out what's wrong with my story and how I can fix it.  Later, though.  When I don't hate it anymore.

Oh! I finished American Gods by Neil Gaiman a few days ago.  That book, guys.  It was a little weird, at first.  Like, I read the first chapter and kind of went "Oh my gosh, what did I get myself into?"  But the writing was so good, so I just kept reading anyways.  I kind of took my time with it--I think I started it way back at the beginning of February.  But I was just enjoying it so much and there was so much to think about so I didn't really want to rush it.  I read like 60 percent of it between February and last week, and then finished the last half of it in a week.  The protagonist, Shadow, was amazing.  I love him.  He is now on my rather short list of favorite fictional characters ever, right up there with Aragorn, Tyrion Lannister, Daenerys Targaryen, Roy Mustang, and possibly a few others.  Seriously though--I haven't felt such a strong emotional connection to a character for a long time.  You know that feeling you get at the end of a book or series, where you're just kind of sad that it's over and you feel kind of empty?  Yeah--that's how I felt when I finished American Gods, but it wasn't because I was sad the story was over.  I was sad because I didn't want to say goodbye to Shadow.  He was an amazing character, and I loved watching his whole journey and transformation.  Plus the book itself was just good.  Neil Gaiman's writing style is amazing and I definitely want to read more books he's written, but the concept was just very thought-provoking and interesting.

I haven't decided if I want to start reading this other book I got yet (Kindred by Octavia Butler) or if I will wait.  I also pre-ordered Transcendence by GSJennsen, which comes out Monday, so maybe I will read that instead.  And I really need to finish A Dance With Dragons since the new season of Game of Thrones is airing in April, and comparing the events of last season to the books, I think the stuff in this season is going to come out of that book, mostly.  Which means the show will probably catch up to the books--if not this season, then next--and I'm not sure what will happen then.  I read this article somewhere last week about how George R.R. Martin's publisher said the 6th book will not be released this year.  So even if it's released next year, there's still one more book that has to be written, which means the TV show will definitely catch up with the books before the full series is finished.  Basically they were saying how no matter what happens, it ends up being kind of a crappy deal.  Either the TV show goes on hiatus indefinitely, which doesn't seem likely since it's so popular.  Or it diverges from the story in the books and they end it their own way, which also seems kind of lame.  Or, GRRM just tells them how it's supposed to go to stay true to the books, which means we find out how the story ends through the TV show instead of the books, and as an author, that just seems kind of devastating to me.  Especially since he's literally spent decades working on this story. :( I guess we'll see what happens.  I think everyone kind of knew this was going to happen.  I mean, the guy takes 5 or 6 years sometimes to write the next book.  But it's still kind of sad...and annoying.
  • Mood: Artistic
  • Listening to: Two Steps From Hell
  • Playing: Dragon Age: Inquisition
  • Eating: Strawberries
  • Drinking: Milk
What happened to my month? It's gone already!

So yesterday, we went up to Utah State again for this thing they do called Transfer Day, which is basically just where they invite all of the possible transfer students to campus once a month and talk about scholarships, housing, etc.  They feed you, and then you get to meet with your academic adviser, which is something I've been wanting to do ever since I got accepted.  Unfortunately, my adviser wasn't there, so I ended up meeting with the guy who I'd been emailing back in the summer trying to figure out which classes I could take that would transfer to USU.  I've got to say, he was a pretty interesting dude.  Very animated.  He was super loud and talking really fast and cracking jokes every other sentence and I was a bit overwhelmed, but he'd make a great story character.  Just saying.

Anyways, so we figured out that I'm only three classes away from being able to apply for the social work program, which is super awesome, but also kind of puts me in an awkward place.  They only accept applications to the program once a year, so I won't be able to apply until next Fall, which I already knew.  I didn't realize that I was so close to being done with all the requirements, though, and since 3 classes isn't even full-time for one semester, I'm going to have to figure something out and take other classes or something. I have to be full-time to keep my Pell grant, which I really need this year since USU is going to be more expensive that first year with out of state tuition.  So, I think what I'm going to do is take a couple of Spanish classes, and then one or two electives related to social work that I'd need to take once I'm in the program anyways.  I haven't looked at what's available yet, but the adviser guy was talking about child psychology, social justice, criminal justice, addiction studies--all of which sound extremely interesting to me, so I'm sure it won't be too hard to pick.  I'm totally done with generals though, which makes me immensely happy.

I also asked about getting into the program, just to figure out how hard it's going to be.  Specifically, I asked how many students apply and how many get in.  He said it's pretty competitive, and they've seen a lot more people applying than normal.  Last year, they had 170 apply, but they can only take about 50 every year.  So now I'm kind of freaking out about that.  I mean, sure, I still have a whole year before I need to worry about it, but that's not going to stop me from having a bit of a meltdown now.  That's less than 30%  :( The odds are a lot lower than I thought they would be.  Kind of discouraging.  I think that as far as grades go, I'll be ok, but then there's all this stuff they look at, too, like recommendations from professors and volunteer work and so on.  I'm hoping that the fact I've worked in a mental health nursing home for the past six years will be helpful, but other than that, I've got nothing.

And then of course there's all the other stuff I have to worry about.  Housing, finding childcare for the girls, paying for all that stuff, etc.  It's still several months away, but at the same time, it's getting closer and closer and I just need to figure out what I'm doing. The more I think about it, the more I think I want to get my Master's degree.  I can get into advanced standing with a bachelor's, which means I just have to do one year for the master's instead of two, so it would be worth it.  Everyone I've talked to in social work says you get paid significantly more with a master's, and most of the jobs I've sort of browsed (just for fun) want you to be an LMSW rather than just having a BSW.  But then they only accept master's students every 2 years, so assuming I get into the bachelor's program next year and graduate in 2018, I'll still have to wait a whole year to apply for the master's program.

Basically, all of that just means that
 we will likely be down there for at least five years.  Possibly more.  And since renting is so expensive and you're basically just throwing money down the drain, and since we are sick and tired of being forced to move out every 12-24 months (especially if Piper is going to start school in a year and half), we have been thinking about buying a house.  O-o  Kind of freaky.  That's just such an "adult" thing to do and I never really imagined we'd get to that point.  Plus, it's just scary.  All the paperwork and rules and everything.  And the MONEY! Ugh, I hate spending more than $15 on jeans so the idea of putting that much money into something just freaks me out a little.  But then I remember it would actually be a bit cheaper than paying rent and I feel a little better.  Also, I really want to decorate a house.  I stopped even hanging pictures on the walls a couple houses ago because I just got sick of trying to make the place look nice when it was all going to come down so soon.  We're in a really really good place financially right now, which is amazing considering the struggles and setbacks we've had for the past several years.  Most of that is due to my husband's efforts.  He still works two almost full-time jobs and recently sold his truck so we don't have to make payments on that anymore. Between that, and saving $200 on car insurance by switching to State Farm, and paying off the loan I had to get to go to school last summer, we save about $1000 every month. We've slowly been paying off some of our other bills and some of the medical stuff that's gone to collections, so hopefully by the time I go to Utah and stop working, we'll just be paying the basic stuff and then the car.  The idea is that we'll live in on-campus family housing for a year while we save money for a down-payment on a house (Having money to put in savings? What is this?), and hopefully within that year, our credit will improve somewhat (it sucks pretty bad right now just because of all the medical bills), and then we'll buy a house sometime that summer after my first year at USU.  That's the plan, anyways.  We'll see how it actually turns out.

In writing news, I'm down to the last 1.5 chapters of my story that I need to rewrite, so that's exciting.  I'll probably finish it this week and then start going through a (faster) edit before I send it to beta-readers.   Once it's out with betas, I'll have some time for art and will probably need the break from writing.  And then I think I'll take my own advice and write some short stories.  I always advise people to do that when they're struggling with finishing a novel or coming up with ideas or whatever, and I keep telling myself I'll write some eventually.  It just never happens, and it needs to.  I'd really like to try and submit some for publishing eventually, but obviously that won't happen if I don't write them.

In reading news, I started reading American Gods by Neil Gaiman.  I've actually never read anything by him before, but he's the favorite author of this writer friend of mine who I have a tremendous amount of respect and admiration for.  I decided to buy one of his books and this one looked most interesting, and so far, it has not failed to impress.  Seriously, this guy can write.  And the story is really interesting.  I love the characters.  Apparently, there have been talks of turning it into a TV show, so now I'm even more excited about it and wish I had more time to read.  Alas, school.  I've also really been wanting to read Lord of the Rings again, but I think my parents kept the books so I need to buy new copies.  I've been wanting a hardcover set for years but just haven't gotten around to it.  So maybe I'll buy one for my birthday in May or something.  I'm still slowly working my way through Dragon Age: Inquisition.  It's taking me forever, not because it's boring or anything, but just because I don't have much time and I only play when I really want to so that I don't end up feeling obligated to finish it or anything.  I think I have like 23 hours of gameplay or something, and I'm really enjoying it so far.

And now I should probably try to finish my homework before work.  I really don't want to go to work.  I'd rather stay home and do homework all day, as sad as that is.  *sigh*  Five more months.  In five more months, I can quit this job....
  • Mood: Lazy
  • Listening to: The Civil Wars
  • Reading: American Gods by Neil Gaiman
  • Playing: Dragon Age: Inquisition
  • Eating: Muffin
  • Drinking: Milk
The Mechanic by FadedDreams5
The Mechanic
Winry Rockbell from Fullmetal Alchemist.  I love her.  She's always been one of my favorites just because she has such an awesome personality.  She's very caring and has a big heart, but she's also tough and smart and has a good sense of humor.  She knows how to take care of herself, and Ed and Al never give her enough credit for how much she cares about and takes care of them throughout the series.

This is what I've been working on while I try to sort out the disaster that is my story.  And since I still haven't figured it out, I'll probably do some more FMA fanart in the near future.  There are a bunch of characters I want to draw.  I haven't decided who next, but probably Roy or Ed. We'll see.

Used this as a sort of pose reference: c2.staticflickr.com/8/7417/128…
I probably should have found a good face reference.  Her face looks a little weird to me.
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Ugh, my motivation for school is seriously dead right now.  I just don't have it in me.  I think most of that is due to the fact that I had an ton of work to do this past week.  Midterms and all that, plus I had this paper to write about interviewing a social worker.  The interview itself actually ended up being really cool.  I did that in February and really should have just written the paper right after I did it instead of slacking off and waiting until the last minute.  Especially since I decided to interview someone my instructor used to work with at the agency she used to work for.  Now I'm freaking out that I procrastinated too much and since my professor used to work there, maybe she's going to be extra judgmental or something if I screw up some of the details.  I don't know. I also had three tests, one of which was a statistics test.  I spent all my time studying for that and ended up getting a perfect score on it, which is fantastic.  Or it would be, except the fact that I was so worried about the math that I didn't study at all for my two social work tests and ended up with low 80s on both of those.  Whatever.  Lord knows I need the A in statistics more than I do in the other classes, so I'm still celebrating.  And by celebrating, I mean that I am spending the entire day doing absolutely nothing related to school at all (well, aside from this short paragraph I have to write for homework, but that's it).  The plan is to edit a huge chunk of my novel today since I didn't get any of it done last week.

Spring Break is next week though, so if I can just hang in there a few more days, I'll be fine.  I don't have too much work to do this week, so that helps.  I decided not to pick up any shifts at work for Spring Break because I really just want a break, and I seriously need to do some spring cleaning.  This place is a mess.  Since we are planning on moving out this summer, the landlords are going to try and sell the house, which means people will possibly be coming through to look at it and it would be best if it didn't like like a family of crazy monster people lived here.  Seriously though, housework is just not my thing.  As long as the place is in decent shape, I'm happy.  I saw this poem somewhere that was basically like, "Dust if you must, but at the end of the day, there are things that are way more important."  That's basically my whole philosophy on life.  I'm not going to waste all my spare time making my house immaculate. And I just gave up trying to keep up with picking up after Piper and Lexi because it's impossible.  Regardless, a good spring cleaning is probably long overdue.  I figure if I do one or two rooms a day, I can have the whole thing done by the end of the week.

I'm also excited to start working on some short stories and other projects during spring break.  I'll be done editing the novel and hopefully will have shipped it off to some beta readers by next Monday, so I've been trying to think of what to do next.  I've just been feeling kind of discouraged with it lately.  It still needs so much work and lately, every time I look at it, I feel like it sucks and that I'm a failure.  Obviously that's not healthy so I think I just need to back off and take a break from it for a while, shift gears and work on something else.  I've got a few different ideas for short stories I want to write so I'll probably try to get some of those done and then work on editing them, maybe have one or two ready to submit to literary magazines or something in a few months.  I don't know.  A girl can dream, right?  And hopefully, with some new feedback from new beta readers, I'll be able to figure out what's wrong with my story and how I can fix it.  Later, though.  When I don't hate it anymore.

Oh! I finished American Gods by Neil Gaiman a few days ago.  That book, guys.  It was a little weird, at first.  Like, I read the first chapter and kind of went "Oh my gosh, what did I get myself into?"  But the writing was so good, so I just kept reading anyways.  I kind of took my time with it--I think I started it way back at the beginning of February.  But I was just enjoying it so much and there was so much to think about so I didn't really want to rush it.  I read like 60 percent of it between February and last week, and then finished the last half of it in a week.  The protagonist, Shadow, was amazing.  I love him.  He is now on my rather short list of favorite fictional characters ever, right up there with Aragorn, Tyrion Lannister, Daenerys Targaryen, Roy Mustang, and possibly a few others.  Seriously though--I haven't felt such a strong emotional connection to a character for a long time.  You know that feeling you get at the end of a book or series, where you're just kind of sad that it's over and you feel kind of empty?  Yeah--that's how I felt when I finished American Gods, but it wasn't because I was sad the story was over.  I was sad because I didn't want to say goodbye to Shadow.  He was an amazing character, and I loved watching his whole journey and transformation.  Plus the book itself was just good.  Neil Gaiman's writing style is amazing and I definitely want to read more books he's written, but the concept was just very thought-provoking and interesting.

I haven't decided if I want to start reading this other book I got yet (Kindred by Octavia Butler) or if I will wait.  I also pre-ordered Transcendence by GSJennsen, which comes out Monday, so maybe I will read that instead.  And I really need to finish A Dance With Dragons since the new season of Game of Thrones is airing in April, and comparing the events of last season to the books, I think the stuff in this season is going to come out of that book, mostly.  Which means the show will probably catch up to the books--if not this season, then next--and I'm not sure what will happen then.  I read this article somewhere last week about how George R.R. Martin's publisher said the 6th book will not be released this year.  So even if it's released next year, there's still one more book that has to be written, which means the TV show will definitely catch up with the books before the full series is finished.  Basically they were saying how no matter what happens, it ends up being kind of a crappy deal.  Either the TV show goes on hiatus indefinitely, which doesn't seem likely since it's so popular.  Or it diverges from the story in the books and they end it their own way, which also seems kind of lame.  Or, GRRM just tells them how it's supposed to go to stay true to the books, which means we find out how the story ends through the TV show instead of the books, and as an author, that just seems kind of devastating to me.  Especially since he's literally spent decades working on this story. :( I guess we'll see what happens.  I think everyone kind of knew this was going to happen.  I mean, the guy takes 5 or 6 years sometimes to write the next book.  But it's still kind of sad...and annoying.
  • Mood: Artistic
  • Listening to: Two Steps From Hell
  • Playing: Dragon Age: Inquisition
  • Eating: Strawberries
  • Drinking: Milk

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FadedDreams5
T. A. Hernandez
Artist | Hobbyist | Varied
United States
Just a 22-year-old artist/writer living in the middle of nowhere with my husband, our daughter, and a doberman. I love comments, feedback, chatting, and meeting other artists/writers, so drop me a not anytime! :)
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:iconppgrainbow:
ppgrainbow Featured By Owner Nov 3, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much for joining my Secret-Santa-2014 group and featuring your journal! :hug:

It would always be good to submit your Secret Santa wishlist too as a favour!
Reply
:iconfadeddreams5:
FadedDreams5 Featured By Owner Nov 3, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Yeah, will do as soon as I get it made.  Thanks for all the faves
Reply
:iconppgrainbow:
ppgrainbow Featured By Owner Nov 3, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
That sounds fair enough.

Sorry for not responding sooner or enough, but my network connection is becoming increasingly unreliable recently. :(

Your entire gallery is wonderful! I'll be looking through your older stuff on your page, btw. :hug:
Reply
:iconsabinoir:
SabiNoir Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2014
Thanks for the fav! Meow :3 
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:iconarkiniano:
Arkiniano Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2014
Nice gallery! and thanks a lot for all the support ;)
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