Another daily word prompt: Confess

Last week I used a prompt using the word constant. I had a ton of fun being inspired to write by a single word, and I decided to do the same thing again this week for my post!

Today’s word is confess. Here are some random thoughts that go along with this word:

I confess that often times I do not know what to think or say. I confess that I get nervous in a lot of situations, but I pretend like I know what I am doing. I confess I am very self conscious and I confess I know I should not be. I confess that sometimes I think negative things about myself and the people around me, and I confess that I do not mean these things. I confess that I miss my Dad, and Mom, and brothers. I confess that I never want to grow up, never want to graduate, never want to be on my own. I confess that I know I should confess more. I think that the word confess in itself is interesting. It is owning up to a lie, or a false statement, or something you are not proud of. The word makes me think of religions and their perception of confessing. I am not a religious person, but I confess I am curious as to what goes on inside the mind of someone who is. I confess I should confess more, it kind of felt good. 🙂


The Daily Post’s One Word Prompts

I was scrolling down my feed and stopped to see a page posted by The Daily Post titled a “one word prompt”, used to inspire bloggers to post and respond with whatever thoughts the word provoked. Today’s word was:


When I think of the word constant, I think of dedication. I think of my desire to be the best I can be each day. It reminds me that even if things go bad, I should be consistent with my push forward. I am constantly overthinking as well, and this made me think about what strategies I can use when I overthink things beyond my control. I will constantly remind myself that there is no point in wishing uncontrollable things away. I should focus on the future, and what I can do to ensure my life is constantly productive.

These prompts are fun and I am looking forward to responding to another one.

A Toxic Duo

In my professional writing class, we were assigned to write a “literacy autobiography”. We took a few classes to workshop everyone’s pieces. One of my classmates wrote something that stuck in my head all day.

Procrastination and Perfectionism: The Perfect Duo.

I adore writing, don’t get me wrong, but it sucks. Here is my problem: my perfectionism makes the process painful, yet the product all too satisfying.

I have never thought of the way my procrastination and perfectionism affect each other, but Mariah put it into perfect words. They are a toxic duo. I admit that I always wait until the last second to start an assignment. I will have two hours to complete it, and somehow still expect it to be my best work. My perfectionism leads me to over stress and over analyze, turning some of my best work to garbage. This is a horrible combination, to procrastinate and crave perfection. Reading Mariah’s essay made me realize that I want to change my habits. My best work comes after it has been edited several times, over several different days. I feel like when I read my work the next day it has a completely different meaning. I hope to change the ways that I write, even though I know it is going to be a challenge. I hope to get rid of this toxic duo..but can I?

Critiquing my own work

For the first time ever I am taking a poetry class, and honestly I hate it. I feel so much pressure to be creative, and I feel like nothing I write makes sense. Part of the course’s rules is to not rhyme, and not talk about love. SO WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO?

I had to submit a poem for workshop, and 23 people had to critique my poem, live and in person. Their suggestions inspired me to critique my own poem, as well as explain certain lines that some people did not understand. So, here is my poem, “The Suburbs”


The Suburbs


The roofs may as well be one,

As they blanket the earth-

A quilt of colors,

Each stitched together with strings of

Pavement and grids of grass

Who’s seeds were mechanically

Planted and strands then groomed to

Mirror the shade of their neighbors.


Raindrops on sidewalk chalk,

Hopscotch and butterflies melt

Into streams of robin egg’s blues

And tickle me pinks

Chasing each other over scooter-

Ridden streets and into the gutter.


A young mother lowers her son into

His crib, inhaling the smell of a head

Who has yet to be polluted with

Talk of war or cancer.



Love leaps from her hands and  

Stains his porcelain skin.

Steel grey eyes,

Who will soon change

To match his father’s,

Reflect the mobile spinning

Above him.


Oh baby,

She pleads,

Dream beyond the suburbs.

In order to do this, I am going to answer some questions my classmates had for me. They were confused by the overall meaning of the poem. Why does she want her child to dream beyond the suburbs when it was so beautifully described? I answer that question by explaining the entire point of the poem is knowing what lives beyond the surface, beyond the beautiful homes and children playing. Growing up in the suburbs, I learned what goes on beyond closed doors. I purposefully chose to peacefully describe the poem at first, and then switch to a darker light. My line breaks were specific to this attempt. In the second stanza, the cute pictures drawn by the children are washed into the gutter. The gutter symbolizes reality, and how no child stays young forever. Students were also confused about the steel grey eyes. I wrote this part because when my brother was born, his eyes were grey, colorless. However, as he got older, the changed into a dark brown to match my fathers. It made me so nervous to realize that people did not understand some parts of my poem, but I think that is whats so cool about poetry, the fact that everyone has their own interpretation of words.

Letter to an Author

After reading Mary Gaitskill’s “Girl on a Plane”, I was moved by the craft of her writing and the way her words effected me. I have been practicing writing epistles for one if my other courses, and that inspired me to write a letter to Mary Gaitskill! The letter in itself explains more about the ways this story made me feel. If you haven’t already read this story, it is included in the Anthology of Contemporary American Short Fiction, written by Joyce Carol Oates.

Dear Mary Gaitskill,

I want my words to demand something from my readers, the way yours do.  I read a short story of yours the other day, “The Girl on the Plane”. I was about half way through when I realized the power that your words had over me. They pushed me to read faster in some parts, and held me back to slow down in others. Your words made me feel as though I had entered your mind, and was in the moment you were describing. You made me hate John Morton, and feel as though he had personally offended me. I have not read any of your other work yet, and I apologize for that. But I can explain. Over the past few years, I have not been reading anything outside of class (and it’s strange, because I act like I’m too busy when in fact I have too much time to spare). This semester I am starting my second major, professional writing. I have learned in the past few weeks that to write effectively, you need to read consistently. You need to be inspired by others and absorb the ways in which they write in order to better your own craft. When I write I feel confident. However, after reading your story, I don’t want to feel confident. The way you write is different from any other piece I have read. It has inspired me to find my own voice. Often times when I read over my own words I feel like someone else wrote them. I want to learn to write in a way that people will recognize. I want to write in a way that is real, like the way you do. How do you get your words to seamlessly flow over the page? How do you transport me into a room i’ve never seen by simply describing it? These are questions I hope to one day find the answer to, questions that you have inspired me to discover. Thank you for writing in your own voice, as it has pushed me to begin the road to finding mine.


Rose Torzynski


My First Commonplace post!

Hi guys! I’m super excited to post for the first time, although I’m still figuring out how to work my site.

In my fiction class, I read a story titled “Bullet in the Brain”, written by Tobias Wolff. The ending of the story has been stuck with me since last week. It’s the story is of a man who gets shot during a bank robbery because he cannot control his condescending and sarcastic ways, and starts laughing at the shooter. The author includes what the man, Anders, sees in his final moments. Here is the passage:

“Once in the brain, that is, the bullet came under the mediation of brain time, which gave Anders plenty of leisure to contemplate the scene that, in a phrase he would have abhorred, “passed before his eyes.”
It is worth noting what Ambers did not remember, given what he did remember. He did not remember his first lover, Sherry, or what he had most madly loved about her, before it came to irritate him…
Anders did not remember his wife, whom he had also loved before she exhausted him with her predictability, or his daughter, now a sullen professor of economics at Dartmouth. He did not remember standing just outside his daughter’s door as she lectured her bear about his naughtiness and described the truly appalling punishments Paws would receive unless he changed his ways. He did not remember a single line of the hundreds of poems he had committed to memory in his youth so that he could give himself the shivers at will – not “Silent, upon a peak in Darien,” or “My God, I heard this day,” or “All my pretty ones? Did you say all? O hell-kite! All?” None of these did he remember; not one…
He did not remember the surprise of seeing a college classmate’s name on the jacket of a novel not long after they graduated, or the respect he had felt after reading the book. He did not remember the pleasure of giving respect. Nor did Anders remember seeing a woman leap to her death from the building opposite his own just days after his daughter was born. He did not remember shouting, “Lord have mercy!” He did not remember deliberately crashing his father’s car in to a tree, of having his ribs kicked in by three policemen at an anti-war rally, or waking himself up with laughter. He did not remember when he began to regard the heap of books on his desk with boredom and dread, or when he grew angry at writers for writing them. He did not remember when everything began to remind him of something else.
This is what he remembered. Heat. A baseball field. Yellow grass, the whirr of insects, himself leaning against a tree as the boys of the neighborhood gather for a pickup game. He looks on as the others argue the relative genius of Mantle and Mays. They have been worrying this subject all summer, and it has become tedious to Anders: an oppression, like the heat. Then the last two boys arrive, Coyle and a cousin of his from Mississippi. Anders has never met Coyle’s cousin before and will never see him again. He says hi with the rest but takes no further notice of him until they’ve chosen sides and some asks the cousin what position he wants to play. “Shortstop,” the boy says. “Short’s the best position they is.” Anders turns and looks at him. He wants to hear Coyle’s cousin repeat what he’s just said, but he knows better than to ask. The others will think he’s being a jerk, ragging the kid for his grammar. But that isn’t it, not at all – it’s that Anders is strangely roused, elated, by those final two words, their pure unexpectedness and their music. He takes the field in a trance, repeating them to himself.
The bullet is already in the brain; it won’t be outrun forever, or charmed to a halt. In the end it will do its work and leave the troubled skull behind, dragging its comet’s tail of memory and hope and talent and love into the marble hall of commerce. That can’t be helped. But for now Anders can still make time. Time for the shadows to lengthen on the grass, time for the tethered dog to bark at the flying ball, time for the boy in right field to smack his sweat-blackened mitt and softly chant, They is, they is, they is.”

I admire how the author can so vividly imagine a scenario that’s impossible to experience- death- and convey that picture to his readers. The main reason I’m including this passage is because of the emotional effect it had on me. I’m one of those people who think about death from time to time, and I am TERRIFIED of it. I do like to imagine, however, that in my last few seconds I will see the people I love, and the moments that meant the most to me. In this story, the character does not see anyone that he loves, but he sees a baseball field from his childhood. The author explains that although this moment is short, in our brains time is almost infinite, so the man has time to make that little moment last. The author also mentioned what the man did not see. He didn’t see the moments that altered his life. He instead saw a short moment that never seemed to be influential while alive. That sparked a thought in me. It reminded me how important the little moments in our life are, and how much of an effect they can have on us, whether or not we are aware. When Wolff writes, “The bullet is already in the brain; it won’t be outrun forever, or charmed to a halt. In the end it will do its work and leave the troubled skull behind, dragging its comet’s tail of memory and hope and talent and love into the marble hall of commerce. That can’t be helped. But for now Anders can still make time.”, I think the author was referring to “the bullet” as life itself. I’m not sure whether the author meant it in a pessimistic way, saying that in the end all of our memories will vanish, or if he meant that we should make the most memories, have the most hope, and share talent and love while we are here. That’s the way I like to look at it. I believe that every moment matters, and I intend to live my life this way.


About Me

My name is Rose Torzynski and I am a Sophomore and communications major here at SUNY Cortland. I am originally from California, but now live in Rochester, New York with my mom and younger brother. I am excited to create a blog, as I have never done so before. I have many passions, and find interests in a wide variety of subjects. My goal for this blog is to share my thoughts and ideas on topics I find to be important, and to hopefully sway my audience to believe in the same things that I do. I am interested in entertainment, especially music. I also care for fashion,news, politics, and sports, so my blog entries will rarely be on the same topic. I love to travel, and have been to many places outside of the United States. I believe it is important to become educated on what is happening worldwide, and that issues happening across the globe are just as relevant as those happening locally. The vision I have for my blog is to keep it somewhat personal, meaning that the audience will feel as though they can connect to what I am sharing in one way or another. I am highly opinionated, and I am not afraid to share my honest thoughts on a topic, regardless to what most people believe. I do however take other opinions into consideration, and I understand that one’s perspective can drastically alter the way things are seen. I hope that those who read my blog will feel informed, as well as inspired.