It’s Ok To Be Unhappy In Grad School

It’s ok to be unhappy in grad school.

It’s ok not to do all the reading.

It’s ok to look outside of your department/coursework/colleagues for validation, inspiration, and a sense of self-worth.

It’s ok to be bored by your coursework.

It’s ok not to like the students you’re teaching.

It’s ok to hate the textbook/curriculum/assignments that you’re required to use in your classroom.

It’s ok to feel threatened by your colleagues.

It’s ok not to like people in your cohort.

It’s ok to question why you ever thought a PhD was a good idea.

It’s ok not to like your professors/your committee/your dissertation chair.

It’s ok not to turn every seminar paper into an article for publication.

It’s ok to be rejected by that journal/conference/research group.

It’s ok to resent the long hours and the crap offices and the terrible money.

It’s ok to be unhappy in grad school. Don’t beat yourself up about feeling like shit. Embrace it. Admit it. Talk about it with somebody you trust: a colleague or a counselor or your best friend back in Poughkeepsie.

Ignoring it won’t make it go away. Turn around, face it, and punch that fucker in the nose. Take pleasure where you find it, when you can, and acknowledge the unhappy when it creeps back in.

The more light you shine on it, the more mirrors you force the unhappy to face, the harder it’ll be for it to sneak up and shiv you in the middle of a seminar, or in your advisor’s office, or over your keyboard when you’re trying to get shit done.

It’s ok to be unhappy in grad school. Just don’t do it alone.

No Net Ensnares Me

Title borrowed with love from Jane Eyre. Wrote this just for myself, because the first line grabbed me, and I kinda feel like that’s the best reason, these days.

Most people wonder is there anything more? But Stiles knows the answer: there is. And he can’t pretend he’s ok with normal life anymore.

Continue reading “No Net Ensnares Me”

Don’t Make Any Sudden Moves

cockles

I sat down to write fluffy Destiel and this angsty Cockles came out instead. I worry about myself sometimes.

Don’t Make Any Sudden Moves

I told myself I hated him. That he was sandpaper on my skin, a blueborne rash behind my eyes that I could never scratch.

That’s why I jumped when he came into a room or met my eye on set or laughed too loud at lunch.

Hate. That’s what it was.

Continue reading “Don’t Make Any Sudden Moves”

Before We Can Speak

Part V [jesus] in the Stray No More series. Standard warnings for RPF, knotting, and the possibility of mpreg.

In this story, Jared accidentally tells the truth and ends up in Jen’s arms.

Before We Can Speak

You lean on the freaking doorbell as hard as you can. Inside, you can hear the chime sound again and again, this tinny awful sound that hits your nerves just wrong, ratchets up your teeth that much higher.

He’s here. He’s gotta be.

His car’s in the driveway, for Christ’s sake.

But more that that, deeper, you know he’s here. You can feel it. Your body can.

So you lean and you wince and you pound on the door, now, one fist heavy against the wood and steady: pound. pound. pound. Continue reading “Before We Can Speak”

No Reply At All


Aaannd, wouldn’t you know, I’ve written myself into another [short?] series, apparently. Nice work, me. Schoolwork? Pshaw! I blame Phil Collins. 

Because the series? Is called Abacab

So. This is a Sam and Dean pre-slash story that follows “Take A Look At Me Now.” In this story, Dean considers the advantages of being underestimated by the one person who should sure as hell know better.

No Reply At All

I swear, Sammy is the master of the buzzkill.

Really, I think it’s his natural talent.

I mean, it’s not like he doesn’t have a reason to be a little down or whatever, with Ava missing and all, but still. Boy could out Eeyore Eeyore some days.

He’s been mopey like all fucking day now, and in that way where he thinks that I don’t notice. Just goes all zen master and silent and deep thoughts and ignores me, which sucks, ’cause he’s not doing it in a way I can give him shit about, not really. It’s too quiet, he’s too quiet, when he’s like this.

It’s annoying as fuck.

And the worst part is that he thinks he’s bein’ too subtle for me to notice, which is just crap. Just shows you how much he underestimates me.

He didn’t always. He used to think I was like, god or something, except with better hair and no pesky nails in my palms to slow me down.

Now? He’d fuckin’ slam those nails into his own hands, if I let him. Every damn day.

I mean, I love the boy, but holy crap has he got a martyr complex. And he’d be like, oh, no, Dean, that’s you! You’re just projecting all of this stuff on me. I don’t mentally flog myself every night when I should be whacking off, or something. I don’t beat myself up every waking moment for shit I should have done, will never do, couldn’t have stopped. Hell no. That’s on you, Dean. Not me.

Pfft. Whatever. Which is exactly why I don’t have to have that conversation with him, because I know exactly what he’d say. I know exactly how he feels, about everything, although I’ll bet you he thinks I have no fucking clue.

Because, again. Underestimating.

I mean, I can kinda understand it. Him not properly ascribing god-like powers to me anymore. He’s not a kid, now, and he was away long enough for my sheen to lose its luster, or whatever. For him to escape the magnetic glow of my personality long enough to see it for the house of mirrors that it really is, most of the time. Continue reading “No Reply At All”

Take A Look At Me Now


A pre-slash Sam/Dean story set right after season 2, episode 11: “Playthings.” Inspired by too much Phil Collins and by the hook that fanspired, a fellow writer [whose Supernatural slash you should go read, people], planted in my head: I should, she suggested, try writing POV Sammy. And so I have. Cheers, fanspired.

Take A Look At Me Now

When Dean gets depressed, he puts on “Against All Odds” and sulks for a couple hundred miles and then everything’s ok again. He’s ok.

Me? I don’t know. Maybe I’ve had more practice at it, or something, but it’s more complicated than that, for me.

It’s always been all right for him to scream and yell when he’s angry, to punch me or the wall or whatever random creep gets in his way. He’s allowed to be sad or whatever in the same way: right there out in the open, so there’s no question as to how he’s feeling. If he’s pissed, you’ll know it, along with everyone in a quarter mile radius. If he’s happy, then he’s freakin’ ecstatic, and you will be too, because it’s kind of great when he’s like that. He’s great, then.

Doesn’t happen as much as I remember, him being happy, but I guess I’ve been away for a long time.

It doesn’t feel like that, though. Mostly, it feels like I’ve gone back in time somehow, to who I was before. It feels like time has kind of stopped around Dean and now that I’m with him, again, it’s stopped for me, too.

Doesn’t change what’s happened, since I left, of course. Since Jess died. Since he came back for me. And, yeah, in my darker moments, or when he’s being a complete asshole, I tell myself that I didn’t want to come, that he dragged me away from where I was happy. That I can be happy again if I just go back. Go home, or something.

Times like that, I think he couldn’t stand the thought of being alone, when you get right down to it. That I’m kind of like his security blanket, some kind of material reassurance that things haven’t really changed that much. That if we’re together, everything’s gonna be ok–well, as ok as it ever was, for us.

Sometimes I think that he sees me the same way that I do him. That, for him, time stops when we’re together. When I’m around.

But I doubt that he thinks about things–about us, or whatever–in quite the same way that I do. He needs me with him, I think, needs to know I’m close by, because otherwise he’d be alone and worse, I wouldn’t be safe, in his mind. He thinks of me as a totem, a sacred object, or something. I’m He Who Must Be Protected. Period.

But there’s more to it than that, I think. Continue reading “Take A Look At Me Now”