MORNINGTIME4 | april avenue

Friday, April 8, 2016

MEET MORNINGTIME4.



She's a writer, artist, and photographer who publishes her work on The Ups and Downs of My Not-So-Average Life, and today we're conducting a q&a with her!





Q: WHAT OR WHO INSPIRED YOU TO START BLOGGING?

A: The summer of 2012 was my first exposure to the blogging world, and throughout the second semester of that year, I discovered the world of blogging through online lists of blogs written by children and teenagers as well as the blogs of fellow users participating in the Young Writers' program of NaNoWriMo. I give some credit to these bloggers, as I may not have started my own blog if it had not been for them!

Ultimately, I was pushed to having my own blog after wanting an creative outlet that expressed my thoughts and opinions, without any impairment or filter standing in my way--including my extreme shy and reserved state. Through my posts, I discussed ideas and events relevant to me, while also recording parts of my non-mundane, day-to-day experiences.
Q: WHAT'S THE REASON BEHIND YOUR BLOG NAME?

A: I brainstormed the name in the same summer I was first introduced to the blogging community, named after the times where I would play with the neighborhood kids that once used to live in the area. It also the summer I went to New York City, Ontario, and Toronto, not to mention cheering for Team USA during the Olympics, whenever it was on the television set. That was a fun, memorable summer! Little did I know that I would start writing on the Internet eight months later!

The anatomy of the name is pretty simple: life has its own ups and downs, yet despite these, I strive to live my life to the best of my abilities, engaging in all of the positive opportunities that are given to me. While some being more eccentric than others (i.e. being one of the youngest interns of one of the largest publishing companies in another country. AKA one of the best jobs ever!). People often sometimes look at my life and like to think that I achieved these somewhat extraordinary things, but it isn't like that at all-- I'm a just young teenage girl from a humble background that just happens to take on whatever life throws at me, and my blog is my tether to help me stay grounded.


Literally, all my best posts are made in the summer.

Q: HOW DO YOU BALANCE YOUR WRITING AND BLOGGING WITH YOUR REAL LIFE?

A: Writing and blogging are extremely important things to me, but oddly enough, I don't particularly carry a constrained blog process, meaning I don't have a set time or schedule on when I have to work on a certain thing. Usually, I devote at least an hour a day to anything blogging-centric. One day, I work on my future blog design. The next day may consist of taking photographs for a new post. On another day, I work to reply to the various comments left on my posts. It all depends on the flow. Some people could argue that doing anything by the flow of inspiration doesn't necessarily result in a fruitful result, but for blogging, I have gotten to the point where I can trust myself to write consistently without having to force myself to post.

As for the writing involving my personal projects itself, I have to push myself with tons of motivation. I tend to fall into some form of procrastination, and it takes me a couple of days to put my "head in the game" again (yes, I purposefully inserted that cheesy High School Musical reference), but I can pull myself out, and when I write (specifically weekend evenings, before I fall asleep), I write productively, roughly 2,500 words a day.

Q: BESIDES BLOGGING, WHAT OTHER CREATIVE ACTIVITIES DO YOU ENJOY?

A: Writing. There was a time in my before I discovered the art of writing and creating short stories, but for the past five to six years, it has been integrated as being a part of my being. There is no beginning or end to how writing intertwined with the person that I am today. Coming hand in hand with writing is reading-- I enjoy reading about different ideas and learning from them. (This is also why the TED Talks website is one of the most visited websites in my history.)

I also enjoy acting and photography.

I often practice my photography in the backyard, capturing photos of sunrises and sunsets.
Q: OUTSIDE OF YOUR INTERNET LIFE, DO YOUR FRIENDS/FAMILY KNOW THAT YOU RUN A BLOG? HOW DOES IT RANK ON YOUR PRIORITY LIST?

A: At first, I never really told anyone I blogged. I had this rational fear of being judged, and if I revealed my blog to anyone in the "real world," it would just add on to many people's judgement of me being weird. Blogging was my ground. Soon, I began to reveal my blog to my family. As for my friends, they found out on accident! In middle school, I would always go onto Blogger on the school libraries, thinking I was being discreet (which, in retrospect, did not look AT ALL discreet, as I frantically switched the tabs whenever someone walked by while being unaware that the tab titles were visible at the top of the screen). In actuality, my circle of friends all became very aware and finally confronted me with the truth the end of freshman year! The good news was that they never actually knew the URL and neither they nor my parents go teasing me on about the fact, that I, MorningTime4, a high school student in the middle of one of the 50 United States, have a blog. 


Some of my friends that actually know I have a blog, all strutting down like the kings and queens of the parking lot.

Q: WHAT IS YOUR APPROACH TO YOUR INTERNET LIFE? (SAFETY, TIME LIMITS, ETC.?)

A: I've now grown to the philosophy that while interacting with people online is great, interaction with those in the real world is much better. My time variables online vary: in the school year, I go on for roughly two hours, while in the summer, I go for double, the rationality behind this being that I rarely ever am allowed to go out during then. Safety online is an important issue; my parents still continue to support my blogging journey because I have been taking precautions to stay safe online. As of now, I still have not posted my real name or photo online for the public to see. In the future, perhaps when I get closer to applying for college, I may be able to start posting photos of me, but the final decision for this has not been decided yet. Why should I reveal my name and image online, anyway? It's much better to go on blogging about topics important to me without being discriminated by a photo depicting my age, gender, or race.

Q: DO YOUR REAL-LIFE EXPERIENCES INSPIRE YOU? WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION FOR YOUR BLOG POSTS?

A: The former question answers the latter. My inspiration comes from my real life experiences, and what I take from them. If you want to write about something, you write about what you know and feel is important. One of my most recent posts, "Don't Say 'Beautiful,'" is a great example of this, describing how society uses certain words to the point of tarnishing the pizzaz, or sparkle, of its original meaning, examples such as "beautiful," "awesome," and "love." 

There's so much inspiration that can be found by the most unexpected things. As Tadashi Hamada from Big Hero 6 says, "Look for a new angle!"


​Often times, I'll blog about the on-going activities in my life. This photo above was from when I interned at one of the biggest publishing companies in the Philippines, where on my first day, I attended a McDonalds Minion press event, where I was asked to play with the Minion toys and try their dessert specials.

Q: FAVORITE PART OF BEING A BLOGGER?

A: SUCH A HARD QUESTION. I love all aspects of blogging-- the liberty of posting about any subject, interacting with the blogging community, discovering the technicalities involved with the process-- these have all opened my eyes, and I love them! Meeting and interacting with new bloggers would have to be one of my favorite of the three aforementioned things, but if you have been around long enough, like I have (over three years and counting), it's bittersweet to watch the "younger" blogs grow up while old blogging friends bid farewell.

Q: HOW HAS YOUR LOCATION AFFECTED YOUR CONTENT/WORLDVIEW?

A: I live in a wild, beautiful state that entails some degree of being disconnected to the rest of society, if that makes any sense, but I also reside in a somewhat urban and populated area. This infusion of wilderness and urbanization can somewhat describe my blogging-- organization tinged with hints of the outdoorsy, wild side. It sometimes hinges my posts, being very limited in terms of places I can write about, but the nature photos I take in exchange for this small downside make up for a lot of it.


One of my favorite photographs, which depicts one of the popular hiking trails that sits right outside of town.

Q: HOW HAS YOUR WRITING GROWN IN THE PAST YEAR OR TWO?

A: My blogging has grown quite a lot. My opinions and the way I present my opinions is the one aspect that continues to undergo a constant state of change. In my earlier months, I would always post about topics in society, such as dating and beauty, and approached them in a rather idealistic matter: "If we all did so-and-so the world would be a happier and better place!" It was very cloud nine-like. Now (though I'm still quite the idealistic and optimistic sort) I attempt to take a more serious, down-to-earth approach, and if one reads through a collection of my posts from 2013 to the present, the amount of maturity and confidence in terms world and life viewpoints transforms as the publish date of the posts approach closer to the present.


Cover photo for one of my favorite posts, "Sometimes, It's Okay to Cry."​
It covers one of the more personal and difficult topics that I have ever written.

Q: WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GROW UP? WHAT COLLEGES/UNIVERSITIES WOULD YOU LIKE TO ATTEND?

A: Every time I revisit this question, the months get closer and closer to when I have to make this decision. I know for certain that I want to minor in Creative Writing, as writing is a huge basis in my life, but as for my major, I'm not sure what I'm called to do. I'm thinking that it will probably be associated with math and science-- but I have to work harder in those two classes, as they are the two that I don't get A's easily in. To think that math and science won't play a predominant part after my high school career is an odd feeling, especially when all my brain does before bed besides contemplating about the world and my future is multiply two two-digit numbers together, like twenty-nine by seventeen (it's kind of a fun pastime). Just because something is harder doesn't mean that it should be shied away from.

I'm not entirely sure of the specific colleges I want to attend yet. I've pretty much resided on the West Coast for most of my life and while I love the outdoors, I wouldn't mind exploring what the East Coast has to offer, explaining why lurking around on the MIT blogs is one of the top five things I do on my laptop besides blogging. I'd love to get into one of the higher caliber universities-- MIT, any of the Ivy Leagues, Dartmouth, John Hopkins...It all comes down on what I want to major in, I suppose. 

Thank you so much for this opportunity, Rachel! I had such a fun time answering these questions, and it is such an honor to be featured on your blog!

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Thanks so much for letting me ask you questions, Morning! Don't forget to follow her on Instagram!

Stay tuned for more posts from April Avenue!

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