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Hello my lovelies!

First of all I want to thank all those who messaged me on my birthday two weeks ago. :hug: It was a nice, cozy day and I got to enjoy every minute of it.

In a few hours, then, we're leaving for Great Britain. We'll spend the first days in Scotland and the latter half of the week in London. So excited, I probably won't sleep tonight. :XD:

When I'm back, I hope to be able to draw more, since I have another two weeks off from work. FrothingLizard, I still owe you my part of the art trade and a birthday picture; haven't forgotten about those! And I'm looking forward to finally getting around to drawing some other stuff as well, especially the outfit meme. If anyone is still interested. ;)

Well, I'm off then. Take care!
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Eating: strawberries
  • Drinking: apple juice
We're heading off for the city of love tomorrow. Excitement! :woohoo:

On a side note: I'm sorry for (yet another) stage of inactivity. Been working overtime a lot lately and the weather has been extremely dissatisfying to boot, which kept me in a somewhat dormant mode. I hope that's gonna change soon. Real soon. :stare:

Take care, everyone! ΐ bientτt! :D
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
Just stopping by to wish you all a Happy Easter!
We're having a white one. Yes, you read correctly. To be honest, it's getting warmer again, but still! It's colder than around Christmas.

Apart from that, I'm feeling a lot better after the accident and water-pipe burst. I love the new apartment and the neighborhood, which made it quite easy to get over what happened a month ago. Haven't gotten around to much drawing and commenting due to the move, but I hope that's about to change soon.

I hope you guys are fine and healthy. Enjoy your holidays! :)
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Eating: chocolate
I've been in one today.
My bf is behind the wheel and wants to turn left when another car shows up right next to us (trying to overtake us – I mean, hello?!). My bf, all startled, speeds up, misses a street sign and knocks it down. Thank God we weren't hurt, but we will surely have to pay for the damaged sign (and the damage the car carried away, possibly).

And if that is not enough, a water pipe in the crawl space above our kitchen has burst, and as we enter the apartment after the accident, we find the whole kitchen spayed with water. EVERYTHING is loused up. We don't know what to do.

I'll try to sleep now, go to work and pack the remaining stuff before we start moving tomorrow.

Irony, thanks for stopping by. Close the door on your way out, okay?
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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After spending the last five and a half years in a very small apartment, it is now time for my boyfriend and me to move. Next to packing, wrapping and transporting our possessions, we have to buy quite a bit of new furniture.
Basically, I'm talking about:
:bulletpurple: a whole new kitchen (cabinets, cupboards, countertop, sink, faucet, dishwasher, extractor hood etc.)
:bulletpurple: a sofa
:bulletpurple: a new wardrobe
:bulletpurple: a dining table
:bulletpurple: shelves
:bulletpurple: carpets
Luckily we don't have to look after wallpapers and flooring, but the furniture alone is gonna cost a pretty penny nonetheless.

Hence I am opening commissions.
I don't expect to cover all the expenses, but both me and my boyfriend are job starters, so we aren't big earners (yet :plotting:). It would be really awesome if you helped me get some extra money together!
So here goes:

Rules and General Information
:bulletblue: I'm usually open to almost anything, but there are a few exceptions as to what I won't draw. We are all smart and commonsense people (are we? :O_o:), so you might guess what I mean: nudity ( = 100% nudity; a butt cheek or some cleavage won't hurt ;P), porn, extreme violence and all that jazz. It's okay to discuss in some cases, but I reserve the right to say no.
:bulletblue: I do draw slash, but nothing too graphic. See above.
:bulletblue: OCs? Yes! Please provide references and – in case the character is not yours – permission from the creator.
:bulletblue: As for payment: PayPal is preferred. If you are from Germany, money transfer would also be possible.
:bulletblue: All prices below are in euros and for one character. Prices for additional characters are negotiable, depending on the complexity and number of characters.
:bulletblue: You will get every commission as a high resolution scan/file. If it's a traditional media piece, I can additionally send you the original – which I highly recommend, because the colors are much brighter. Shipping means a small extra charge, but you'll get to actually hold your commission in your hands.


Prices
Pencil Sketch
:bulletgreen: with simple background: 5€
:bulletgreen: with detailed background: 10€
Examples:
fav.me/d4qxxmo
merani.deviantart.com/art/High…

Colored Pencils
:bulletgreen: with simple background: 25€
:bulletgreen: with detailed background: 35€
Examples:
merani.deviantart.com/art/Hall…
merani.deviantart.com/art/No-2…

Copic Markers
:bulletgreen: with simple background: 35€
:bulletgreen: with detailed background: 50€
Examples:
merani.deviantart.com/art/PKMN…
merani.deviantart.com/art/My-W…

Colored Pencils + Copics (multilayer)
:bulletgreen: with simple background: 45€
:bulletgreen: with detailed background: 60€
Examples:
merani.deviantart.com/art/Miss…
fav.me/d5syc2q

Digital Coloring
:bulletgreen: with simple background: 30€
:bulletgreen: with detailed background: 40€
Examples:
fav.me/d31tsp2
merani.deviantart.com/art/Play…

Shipping
:bulletgreen: This contains both shipping costs as such and wrapping. Add 5€ if you would like to have the original drawing sent to you.

When you look through my gallery, you'll notice that I'm pretty meticulous with all my drawings. My prices might not be very low, but I think they are still fair. You can be sure that I put a lot of effort in every artwork, no matter if it's just a sketch or a fully colored picture.


Process
:bulletyellow: If you want to commission me, send me a note with a description of what you would like (which medium, character(s), reference(s) if necessary, …) and I will tell you the price.
:bulletyellow: You will then get a rough sketch of your commission. If you want me to change something, you can tell me now. It will be a lot more difficult – if not impossible – to alter the picture at a later time.
:bulletyellow: If you approve of the sketch, I will ask for your payment.
:bulletyellow: Once I've received it, I'll either continue working on your picture (in case you have requested coloring) or clean up the sketch.
:bulletyellow: The finished picture will be sent to you digitally and – if you have asked for the original – by mail. Usually, I'll also upload the finished work on deviantArt. If you don't want that, just tell me.


That's it. :) Don't hesitate to ask questions if you have any.

Every tiny bit helps. If you can't afford a commission yourself, but know somebody who could be interested, I'd be more than grateful if you spread the word.
Thank you so, so much for your support! :thanks:
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: hot chocolate
First of all: Happy New Year to all of you! I hope you had a good start and got to enjoy some quality time with family and friends over the holidays.

Also, thank you to everyone who participated in the Christmas card exchange! As usual, I had a great time drawing for you and can't wait for December to start another one. :D
Little update: I received 6 out of the 8 cards so far, namely those of Feerie-the-angel, LordNegaduck, Vampire-Sacrifice, DisneyPsycho, StephRatte and TrishaBeakens. I hope that the last two will arrive soon, and will let you know once they are here.

And yeah, I've been tagged! Four times!! :faint: Thank you so much, guys, for your interest in my characters! I guess it's time for me to feed you with random facts now, eh? Okay, you asked for it and you shall receive!

Rules:
1. Post The Rules.
2. Each Tagged Person Tells Eight Things About their characters that the tagger chooses.
3. At The End Tag Four People and Put Their Icons Into Your Journal.
4. Then Go To Their Page and Tell Them That You Tagged Them.

Naomi Solveigh Sputterspark
:bulletblue: She was born well past her due date.
:bulletblue: As a small child, she has a pink nose, which slowly turns black when she hits puberty.
:bulletblue: She doesn't have superpowers. However, she's somewhat immune to smaller electric shocks. I guess she grew accustomed to them. :shrug:
:bulletblue: Naomi finds out about Elmo's secret identity at the age of 8 when she watches the news, which (understandably) shakes her confidence in her daddy. It takes Eleanor and Elmo quite some time and energy to explain themselves, to make her understand and trust her father again. As a teenager, she's cool with it and even reveals the secret to William.
:bulletblue: Unlike her mother, Naomi is more comfortable with her looks and more revealing than her. Overall, she's not as inhibited as her parents were and more outgoing.
:bulletblue: Her favorite hobby is finding out who she is. She's an autodidact, tries out many different things and absorbs every bit of relevant information. She also loves to experiment with her looks, sews clothes for herself and changes her hairdo quite often.
:bulletblue: She'll be a criminal psychologist and mother of five children.
:bulletblue: As a toddler, she used to utter a panting sound (like a voiceless/breathed "heh") whenever she was overly excited about or stimulated by something.

William Paul Emerson
:bulletred: He's a model for underwear.
:bulletred: Naomi can comfortably sit on one side of his shoulders.
:bulletred: His parents are divorced, he lives with his father and stepmother. They have a good relationship, but both work a lot. Since he spends a lot of his time with Naomi and her family, Elmo becomes an additional father figure for William.
:bulletred: He possesses more shoes than Naomi and Eleanor combined.
:bulletred: In his early teenage years, he was bullied because of his physique (tall, lanky, broad-shouldered). During his exchange year in France, he turned into the jock he is now.
:bulletred: He never cried when he was hit – he laughed instead. Which served as an extra-incitement for his bullies.
:bulletred: He sings to memorize things and writes songs whenever he's overcome with heavy emotions.
:bulletred: He ends discussions through making his conversational partner(s) laugh so that they can't argue anymore.

Eleanor Carolyn Johansson Sputterspark (or Sputterspark Johansson? What do you think sounds better?)
:bulletgreen: When she was born, her parents had just graduated from high school. Birth control pill fail is all I say.
:bulletgreen: She can't drive.
:bulletgreen: Although she's very adept in many different things and learns quickly, Eleanor never really learned to play an instrument (whereas her daughter plays the cross flute).
:bulletgreen: She loves soccer and hardly ever misses a match of the Swedish national team. She's very patriotic anyway and likes to surround herself with small things that remind her of Sweden.
:bulletgreen: She has a PhD in family law.
:bulletgreen: Eleanor did have a relationship before reuniting with Elmo, but broke up with her boyfriend when he wanted more. Subconsciously, she still loved Elmo all the time and believed that he's alive, somewhere out there. Maintaining the relationship would've felt like cheating on Elmo to her – even though they were just friends before being torn apart.
:bulletgreen: She curses and rants in Swedish.
:bulletgreen: She has a high tolerance for alcohol and joins in every drinking game, being aware that she can easily drink the others under the table.

And I tag … *drumroll* … :iconmegs83:, :icondarkwingsnark:, :iconferryqueen: and :iconvampire-sacrifice:. Have fun! :D
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: tea
A great start of December everyone! :D

First of all: Thank you for the reaction to my latest journal concerning inspiring music! Still, I need MOAR! :la: Thus I'd like to call on you to drop me a line or two and tell me which music inspires you. I'd be really grateful for your input: merani.deviantart.com/journal/…

And now the main reason for this journal: My colored pencils are sharpened and I'm ready for another Christmas card exchange! For those of you who are new to this (and as a reminder for those who exchanged cards with me in the past), here's how it works:

Those of you who are interested, please leave me a comment here or, better yet, drop me a note. Once I've added you to the list, you'll have to tell me your address and I'll give you mine. I'll then make a card for you and send it to you as soon as possible. Please don't forget to tell me when it's arrived! And since it's an exchange, I'd like to get a card in return. :)

As always, 10 slots are open. Since I'm posting this journal a little later than usual, however, I'll have to set a deadline for comments/notes, which will be Sunday, December 9th. Please keep in mind that my cards are handmade and need to travel many many miles. It's just to make sure that they make it to you in time.

Any questions? Just ask me. If not: Let's get started! :woohoo:

The list:

1.) :iconzebeckras: (card sent)
2.) :iconstephratte: (she received card)
3.) :iconfrothinglizard: (she received card)
4.) :icondisneypsycho: (she received card)
5.) :iconfeerie-the-angel: (she received card, I received card)
6.) :iconvampire-sacrifice: (she received card, I received card)
7.) :iconlordnegaduck: (he received card, I received card)
8.) :icontrishabeakens: (she received card)
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: tea
Hi everybody!

It's about time for a new journal. Other than going on vacation and undergoing some changes at work (nothing crucial, but there was a lot to prepare and evaluate), nothing spectacular happened in my life in the last few months. :P Unfortunately.  In case anybody is wondering about the announcements I made in the last journal – sharing a wedding photo or two and submitting Sweden-related art –, let me tell you that
a) I haven't had the time to look through all of the photos yet, especially since I keep receiving new batches every now and then from relatives and friends of the bridal couple. When I'm finally done organizing, I'll most probably just e-mail the pictures to those that are really interested in seeing them. I'll come back to that when it happens.
b) Stockholm was so awesome that I hardly found the time to sit down and draw a bit. However, new pictures are in the works. :nod:

BUT ... Christmas is drawing nearer (which calls for another Christmas card exchange real soon :la:), it's getting colder outside and cozier inside. And to me, Christmastime is always a very inspiring time – which will hopefully result in a greater output of drawings. :D In order to achieve that (and also because it's just interesting to talk about), I'd like to know what kind of music inspires you to draw, write, craft, ... whatever you do artistically. Is there a certain band or singer you usually listen to, are there certain songs that help you get into a specific mood or imagine particular scenarios? Which musical genres do you turn to, and for which purpose?

I'd highly appreciate your input and am really excited to read your experiences! I'll also gladly share my own thoughts with you, so that I'm not the only one who benefits from this. :)

Here's the update:
Desert-Lilly put it quite accurately and I would like to adopt her wording: I'm sort of a Frankenstein's monster when it comes to music. I like songs from almost every genre and thus can turn to entirely different artists when I need to put myself into a specific mood.
What always works for me is Kent, a Swedish rock band. They have a variety of great songs, which help me imagine very vivid scenarios. For example whenever I need to write or draw something extremely sad or unsettling, I listen to their song "Hjδrta", which is probably the saddest song in the whole wide world. It's quite hard to listen to it and – in addition – watch the music video once you know what the song is about. The song is sheer symbolism and always makes me cry. Another one that perfectly gets me into a sad mood is "Pale" by Within Temptation. I always turn on that one when I write an unhappy scene in my fanfic.
I also have a soft spot for "epic scores" (another quote from Desert-Lilly ;)), music with huge orchestras. Again, Within Temptation is a good address, just as many other symphonic metal bands (e.g. Nightwish).  But I'm also referring to instrumental soundtracks. Pirates of the Caribbean is all I say. :D Just an example, but it's among my favorites. But there are also many of the "simpler" movie soundtracks that inspire me to draw, for example "My Best Friend's Wedding". It's full of powerful love songs.
What always manages to get me into a happy, high-spirited or playful mood is 80s pop and New Wave. There are far too many songs to mention here, but right now I'm totally hooked on Matthew Wilder's "Break My Stride". Depeche Mode and A-ha are always a treat for the ears as well.

I'll keep adding to this list whenever I recall something I've forgotten. But for now it's your turn again! :D
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: tea
My life is crazy right now – and I'm going to tell you why in a second –, but it's a good kind of crazy, believe me. :) The result is an ongoing scarce presence here, but I promise to catch up on the deviations and journals in my in-box real soon.

So this past weekend the wedding bells were chiming. Not for me, though, at least not this time. ;) My beloved brother got married and since I was his maid of honor, there was a lot to prepare for me in the past few weeks.
They had a beautiful ceremony and the party was located at an old manor with an incredibly gorgeous garden. I will see if my brother allows me to submit one or two photos here, because I really want to share the magic that was going on there. :heart: There were also some surprises, of course. My cousin and me surprised my brother and his wife with a speech we held together. That was a very emotional moment, not only for the bride and groom. Quite a few people teared up a bit, including myself. Then, at midnight, my brother and his band performed some songs on the stage, which was really cool. Definitely a weekend I will never forget!

And tomorrow I will head off to my personal Wonderland: Sweden! It took us some time, but now my bf and me are finally going there together. I'm excited beyond words! :la: I'm taking my sketchbook with me so I can get some inspiration and study the Swedes. All in the name of character development, of course. ;) In case I upload my vacation stuff here (and I really plan on submitting more, especially the art trades and gifts I've promised to slimthrowed, FrankieVonDrake, FrothingLizard, GreyOfPTA, Zebeckras and some others – I haven't forgotten about you, don't worry!), it'll probably be Eleanor-related. You have been warned! :D

Very well then, have a good time everyone and take care! :hug: Love ya!
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: water
I'm still in the process of digesting what happened, but the break did me good. Thank you to all who left me encouraging comments and/or birthday wishes. (My birthday was, actually, the best I've had so far, with a nice barbecue at work.) You have no idea how much I appreciate your kind words. :heart:

It took some time, but I feel ready to get back. I've missed you all. :hug:
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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  • Drinking: tea
I was just beginning to get the hostage drama (www.spiegel.de/international/g…), that turned last Wednesday into a very unpleasant memory, out of my system and feel better, but then my mother told me today that her sister, my aunt, is dead. She died yesterday, out of the blue.
I hate to make use of this kind of language, but right now I feel shitty. Really shitty.

I'll probably take a break from deviantArt. Dunno if I'll be back for my birthday this Friday.

Take care.
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: water
www.spiegel.de/international/g…
This happened in the neighborhood of my workplace today, just across the street. Me, my workmates and the kids had to stay inside the house all the morning because we didn't know what would happen.

I really hope that none of you will ever have to live through a similar situation.
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: water
Have you ever had one of those days when several things that you've desperately been expecting to happen finally do happen, all at once? Today was one of those days for me.
I will spare you the details, but the best of all was that I got called by my university and they eventually gave me feedback on my diploma thesis. I have no words to describe how happy I am, because the waiting finally came to an end and all the blood, sweat and tears paid off. Life is super-great right now. :boogie:

How are you guys? Tell me everything! :)
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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  • Drinking: tea
And hello there, everybody! How have you all been doing? :)
I am officially done with university. Friday noon, I handed in my diploma thesis and since Sunday I am no longer a student. I have not graduated yet, for it'll take a few weeks until I get my diploma, but there are no further obligations, thus the burden of 15 stressful months was finally lifted from my shoulders this weekend. Once again I wanna thank everyone who supported and encouraged me during that time. You guys rock! :hug:

For now I am slowly wading through the bunch of messages that have piled up and probably won't be able to comment on every deviation or reply to every comment, so sorry in advance if I can't get back to all of you. But I'm looking forward to all new updates now that I finally have weekends and free evenings again. And time to draw myself! :la:
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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  • Drinking: tea
"Diploma thesis" is all I say. I know I still have messages and deviations to reply to (and FrankieVonDrake: I still definitely want to enter your contest!), but right now this monster of a paper requires all my attention.
Take care everyone. :hug:
  • Reading: what I'm writing
  • Watching: the screen
  • Drinking: tea
Happy New Year and a very belated Merry Christmas! I hope you all had fantastic holidays and a good start of the year. As for me, the past two and a half weeks have been very eventful – both positively and negatively.

This Christmas marked the end of my finals (which, with all the summarizing and studying, have kept me busy for almost exactly one year) and the start of my diploma thesis. A huge relief on the one hand, a new task on the other. The holidays served as a source of tranquility, which I was definitely in need of. Yet it seems, in retrospect, that these have been the busiest holidays ever for me.
First of all, my grandmother (the last grandparent I had) died shortly before Christmas. We have seen it coming, yet her passing was too unexpected for me. When I came to visit her in the hospital, she had passed away just a few minutes earlier. So even though I was prepared, it still hit me hard because I hadn't had the chance to say goodbye.
It has helped a lot, though, that my mother (my Granny was her mother) is handling the situation so well. Thus the spirit was not affected and we had a wonderful time. I hardly had any time to sit back and relax this year, though, since I spent every (and with every I mean every) drop of energy and time on meeting with relatives and friends. It was hectic at times, but so nice to see everyone again.

Now that the new year has begun, 2012 is suddenly so very tangible. It is here! And in my case it means: graduation, finding a job, probably moving. I'm curious what it's gonna bring!
Apart from handing in a good diploma thesis and finding a nice job, I don't have any concrete plans so far. Oh well, going on vacation. Maybe I will also open up commissions again. I'm in the mood. :D If anyone's interested, just drop me a message.

Finally, I wanna say another thank-you to those who exchanged Christmas cards with me this year. As always, it was a pleasure to draw all those cards for you and a wonderful experience. I can't wait for next Christmas! :)

Well, that was all. Have a good first week of the year and a fabulous 2012 over all. Love ya! :heart:
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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  • Drinking: fruit punch
You possibly remember my absence from dA in September due to that one final exam that has been swapped with another one and my worries about it.
Well, it turned out this morning that my panicking was totally unfounded. I got an A. :faint: I am uber-happy about the result, yet it'll probably take me another few days to realize it.

I wanna thank you again for your kind words of encouragement and support (and apologize for the overly dramatic journal back then). Love you all! :glomp:
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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  • Drinking: grape juice
Hello everyone!

I'm free! :hooray: No more studying for exams! I'm so happy it's over, you have no idea. A huge thank-you to all those who encouraged me and showed such a great amount of patience. There still is a considerable load of work ahead of me (diploma thesis), but I think I'll have a better work-life balance during that time.

Also, Christmas is drawing near! And you know what that means: It's time for a new Christmas Card Exchange! Gee, I've been looking forward to this for quite some time now. Soooo, who is interested in an exchange with me this year? :woohoo: Please drop me a comment and, provided you're under the first 10 people to respond, send me a note with your address. You'll get mine in return then.

And now excuse me, I'm going to get ready and sharpen my pencils. :eager:


1. :icondeathbymarshmallows:
2. :iconfeerie-the-angel:
3. :icondarkwingfan:
4. :iconstephratte:
5. :iconthe-real-vega777:
6. :iconmushud:
7. :icontrishabeakens:
8. :iconlordnegaduck:
9. :iconzebeckras:
10. :iconshychick:
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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First of all: Thank you all for the feedback on my latest journal. It feels good to know that you understand what I mean. And as I said before, I hope I didn't irritate or hurt anybody with what I wrote.

So, today I felt the need to replace the old journal with a meager update concerning my exams (one of the oral exams has been postponed to November 16th, which is now officially my last day of finals and not November 11th).
But then my bf's mother called to bring some bad news. One of the family's cats, Momo, was hit by a car tonight. I never thought that would happen to her. She was such a smart cat, so attentive. I know it's "just a pet" and I will get over it, but she was my favorite. Every time we came to visit my bf's family during semester breaks, I would enjoy the time I had with her to the fullest and miss her when she was not around. It hurts me to know that I will never see her again.
I've lost own pets as well, but it's different when you're not constantly there and had no chance to say goodbye.
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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I'm usually not the kind of person to write this kind of journal and I'll most probably regret having posted this in a few hours, but in this case I feel that I need to get it off my chest.

I know most of you watch me for my DWD-related art. I really enjoy being a part of a fandom full of creative people and I really appreciate your interest in my works a lot. So when I post something that is non-DWD-related, I expect less feedback. That's totally okay with me. But here's my concern:

Many of you regularly communicate how much they like my pictures and again: I appreciate that very much. Now I've been away for some time and have not been very active before that either, so now that I finally found the time to draw again I somewhat expected to see a reaction of some sort. Again, I didn't expect you to welcome me with applause (I know that you have a life offline and I never expected you to drop me a line on all of my submissions), I'm not even particularly angry or anything, but I do feel a bit ... unnoticed? I can't really decipher it.

What I want to say is: especially in times like this when I'm super-busy with preparing for and writing my finals, I feel a certain pressure in the form of expectation. Expectation that I submit something. I know that no one actually pressures me, but I guess you know what I mean. I feel a certain discrepancy between what is said and what is done.


I tried hard to phrase this journal carefully. So if I baffled you, I'm sorry. If I hurt or offended you, then I'm even more sorry.  I just wanted to convey properly what is on my mind.
  • Reading: what I'm writing
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