The Opposite of Loneliness [Literature 2]

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Finally back (once again) to the world of blogging, I thought long and hard what I wanted my first post since my almost six-month hiatus to be like. Definitely not one declaring that I have crawled out from under my rock another time (been there, done that). Instead, I decided to write about something that recently impressed, inspired, and awed me which is why I will talk about Marina Keegan’s book The Opposite of Loneliness.

Published in 2014, the book came out two years after Marina’s tragic death only days after her graduation from Yale. As sad that it is and as shocked I was when I learned of the circumstances, that is not what I want to focus on in this post but rather cherish the amazing work she has left behind.

I’ve got to be honest, reading this collection of both fictional & non-fictional essays written by someone who, unfortunately, did not even turn 23 (!!!), I couldn’t help but be a bit envious. I’ve already mentioned on this little blog that it is one of my biggest dreams to be able to work in writing – in whichever shape or form. Whether for a newspaper or magazine, books, or for TV/film. The only problem: I’m not really convinced that I’ve got what it takes. Or can actually write (well) for that matter. That’s the reason why I picked up The Opposite of Loneliness in the first place; I wanted to see (and compare) what someone my age was capable of producing. Needless to say, I was impressed. Not only is her style fresh, witty, and just simply really good but Keegan also had an incredible knack for assessing what’s going on around her. As a student about to graduate from university this summer I could relate to the stories, plots, and characters she so vividly created. At times, when I marvelled at her ease and confidence, I thought to myself: You’re definitely not as good. Far from it. Though I am not giving up on my dream as of yet I know I’ve got a loooong way to go.

What probably stood out the most for me is Marina’s optimism. Especially the essay which gave the collection its title and was in fact her graduation essay urges to keep a postive outlook on life. Me being the total opposite, a person who tends to concentrate on the negative a little too much, I felt encouraged to read a person my age’s thoughts on exactly the things that worry me. While I’ve come to realise already that I’m definitely not too old for pretty much anthing (in terms of what I can achieve in life), Marina’s heartfelt address to her fellow students was exactly what I needed to give me that last assurance(see quote below).

My advice to all budding writers, students, and lovers of books and literature: go out and get that book. Maybe you won’t connect with it as much as I did but I believe there is something to draw from it for everyone.

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One thought on “The Opposite of Loneliness [Literature 2]

  1. I really love that article!!!
    I personally think its been a while –probably a lil bit too much– i couldnt succeed to be positive anymore. So that i can truly understand your feelings by reading this book while knowing the story’s background and then realizing you must change your fucking mind NOW. But i know… I know how much its difficult. But be sure that being negative in life never helps you. NEVER. More you feel depressed, more your life seems to be really really bad. You must suddenly have the feeling that everything you try to be done, to be ok, never get achevied in the way you want, in a positive way. Sometimes i think –even overthink in fact– that i suck, that a thing will not work, that i cannot do it because i am not able to reach a goal –and all of these matters without trying. And then, during several days sounds in my head something like: “im the most horrible person in da world, i dont deserve to be looked at, i dont even deserve love from my friend, my boyfriend or my family.” BUT i do my best. I really do my best to please everyone i like on earth –and this without waiting for something in return– just because i love this way of life. And i NOWADAYS do my best to be POSITIVE. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. BUT WE GOTTA TRY!!!! At least, we try. I just want to tell you to read “The four agreements” from Miguel Ruiz, a beautiful, small and smart book i got at my birthday a few weeks ago. Learn to love yourself, your life and never judge yourself, never say something bad against yourself. I know its hard but i know you can do it! I believe in you!!! I must say i EVEN believe in US, we will get over it. I promise you that, as much as i promise you to be there for you ever and ever.

    P.s.: i love you and the wholly adorable person you are!

    “Be impeccable with your word. Dont take anything personally. Dont make assumptions. Always do your best.” – The Four Agreements. Let them guide your life.

    Liked by 1 person

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