books

SURPRISE!! (new book of poetry)

Hello, my dear readers!

It is very nice to write to you on this bright Wednesday morning at home. In my little neck of the woods I am busy studying for pilot exams and avoiding some bad storms along the way. But how are you guys doing? Please keep me updated, as I love hearing your stories!

A few months, I mentioned that I was working on a, well, a surprise! And I’ve finally finished it, so without further ado…

I’ve written a book of poetry!

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Thanks to Miss Givenchy for lending a hand (literally her hand) on this cover!!! ❤

Lose yourself in the imagination, in the world of your dreams… But remember to consider what your reality really is along the way…

This poetry collection is split into five parts: A-Z, 7 Deadly Sins, 7 Heavenly Virtues, College Class Confessions, and Late Night Candle Side. Throughout the collection you will find emotion, question, and reason–and your presence is required to discover more.

Yes, that’s right! I compiled about sixty of my favorite poems I’ve written so far and threw them into a book called burned into a realist. Katie George, a poet? Yes, I am surprised too. As someone who writes primarily fiction, poetry isn’t normally my schtick. However, it was this very blog that introduced me to poetry and how universally, beautifully complex it is for its readers! Over the past year I’ve shared my poems on this blog, and I thought, “Why not put them in a book?”

So that’s what I did!

I’ve split the book into five parts, based on five chapters of poetry: a-z, 7 deadly sins, 7 heavenly virtues, college class confessions, and late night candle side. Each section has a different theme. For example, a-z contains the poems I wrote for a challenge in September, in which each poem starts with a different letter.

Anyway, I know this is not much, but I did think it would be cool to have my poems all in one place. For those of you who’ve all ready read them, well, you’ll be surprised to see I’ve added a bunch of free clipart to the poems to spice things up a bit. The one snag is that the book is only in paperback form. While I spent hours developing an eBook version of “burned into a realist,” I found it nearly impossible to format the clipart with the poetry in an appealing way. So for now it’s only available from Amazon in paperback form.

Well, guys, thank you so much for putting up with me through this journey! If you are interested in purchasing a copy, you can purchase it here! And if you don’t want to, my poems are available for free all throughout this blog, so that’s another way to read what I’m producing (if you are interested!).

❤ Much love to all, and I will be posting on Friday… And instead of poetry or nonsense about me, we’re going back to our roots… AKA writing tips! ❤

Thank you guys so much, and until next time,

-Katie Kay

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q&a

Q & A time!

Hello, my dear readers!

It’s a new year, so why not do a new Q & A? (This is my attempt at trying to be cool, but I know it is failing miserably.) On a more serious note, I realized I have not done a Q & A in quite some time, so I thought it would be fun to answer a few nonsensical questions for you guys. And I want you to answer as well!

So, without further ado, let’s commence!

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Random Route 66 finds. What am I wearing? (Tucumcari, New Mexico // August 2019)

1. Are you a dog person or cat person?

In all reality, I’m a guinea pig person. I’m kind of scared of dogs and cats since I’ve never had them as pets. That being said, I would much rather be around pups!

2. Are you a fan of any sports team?

I used to be a diehard Carolina Panthers fan (NFL football). But now I do not watch sports at all. (Too much time devoted to this blog! 🙂

3. Are you a good cook?

I’m getting there. I do enjoy cooking, but I’m not the biggest fan of trying new things. That being said, my friend and I did make a nice chicken penne pasta dish a few nights ago, and our cooking skills were put to the test. We didn’t burn anything, and we didn’t get sick, so I find those two traits the sign of a slightly average chef in the making.

4. Are you a hoarder?

To a certain extent, yes. What do I mean by this? I hoard books. I’ve got hundreds at this point, so I should probably donate them soon to the local library. But I love walking by all of them and reviewing what I’ve read. (You may relate to this.)

5. Are you a morning person or a night owl?

Naturally a morning person. I enjoy rising with the sun. During college I was a night owl because everyone else was, but my natural self is a morning gal.

6. Are you close to anyone now that you initially disliked?

Yes! I won’t name names, but yes. Which is a life lesson of… Give people a chance! You never know who will end up being extremely important in your life.

7. Are you high maintenance?

I hope not!

8. Are you more likely to avoid conflict or engage it head-on?

Avoid, avoid, avoid. I hate conflict. I wish life were always rainbows and unicorns, but that’s not how it goes. When certain lines are crossed, a certain beast in me is unleashed, and I engage it head-on, but that has to be an extremely rare occurrence (such as an attack on friends or family).

9. Are you named after anyone?

Yes! My middle name, Kay, is after my grandmother’s middle name. So whenever someone says Katie Kay, he or she is honoring my grandmother! ❤

10. Are you scared of heights?

Nope. I guess that’s a good quality to have when one is a pilot. 🙂

11. Can you dance?

I’m the worst dancer in the history of mankind. But I do enjoy a good electric slide!

12. Can you do a split?

I’m also the least limber human being in this universe, so the short answer is no.

13. Can you touch your nose with your tongue?

What kind of a question is this? Who has a tongue that long?!?! Is that possible?!

14. Can you whistle?

Yes! Finally something I can say yes to.

15. Describe yourself in a single sentence?

Katie Kay is a redonk individual who loves to ask questions, blog, study UFOs, and take quick trips across the sky.

17. Did your mother go to college?

Yes! She graduated from Eastern Washington University with a degree in English Literature.

18. Do you belong to any warehouse stores (Costco, BJ’s, etc.)?

I do enjoy a nice membership at Costco. There’s something pretty entertaining about getting lost in this warehouse store for a little bit. Normally I hit up the book section and find some cheap keyboards to play.

19. If you could give your younger self any advice what would it be?

Don’t be a creative writing major in college. (More on this to come, I promise!)

20. If you could live forever, would you rather stay one age forever or get older?

Just because I could live forever doesn’t mean I’d choose to. 🙂 Maybe this is a sad outlook, but I don’t want to live forever on this planet. There are better things in store. Plus, it would break my heart if I was on Earth forever while my loved ones were not.

21. If you could save just one, would you rather save Humanity or the Earth?

Another weird question. How would I save humanity without Earth? Whatever, I won’t question too much. Duh, I’d save humanity! While Earth is amazing and a great home, humanity far outweighs Earth.

22. What did you want to be when you grew up?

Pilot!

23. What do you call carbonated drink called?

Soda?

24. What do you do if you can’t sleep at night? Do you count sheep? Toss and Turn? Try to get up and do something productive?

I’m pretty lucky with my sleep cycles. It takes me a few minutes to fall asleep, but I always plan out stories with this spare time. But on the rare chance I can’t sleep, I toss and turn or listen to music to calm my brain down.

25. What do you do most when you are bored?

Unfortunately I look up nonsense on my phone. Another favorite is messing with my sister.

26. What do you like about your home?

Family!

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A perfect description of my life.

THERE YOU GO!

Some random nonsense from me! But seriously I want to see your responses, so don’t be afraid to comment below with your own answers. ❤

Well, for now I’m gonna go, and I’ll probably still be pondering question #21, because how in the world would we have humanity but no Earth? All right. Enough rambling today.

Until next time,

-Katie Kay

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thoughts

2019 REFLECTION

Hello, my dear readers!

Can you all believe 2019 is coming to a close? It seems like every other month I would write something along the lines of: “How are we already in March? How is it already July? And now 2019 is over?” Well, that’s how time flies, I suppose!

In the spirit of last year’s 2018 Reflection, I decided to follow up with a 2019 Reflection as well. As always, I want to hear about your reflections, so do not be afraid to comment or share your own post with me so I can see what you’ve been up to this year. 🙂

2019 has been a year, that’s for sure, and it’s probably been very different for all of us. For some of you, it has been a year of definition, and you’re seeing more clearly as a result. But I bet for others it’s been a tough one, and you’re hoping 2020 will pave the way for a happier season in your life.

I’m in the middle on this one. 2019 was a year of definition, in the sense that I graduated college, furthered my aviation pursuits, and left California behind. But it was also a year in which I found myself doubting things and questioning why I didn’t do things a certain way.

The good thing for us all is that we have a fresh start to a new year coming up very soon. We can create new resolutions, live our lives more deeply, and accept the mysteries of time. But before we come up with any resolutions for 2019, let’s do a little reflecting…

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Beautiful Hawaii (July 2019)

1. Sometimes we do not know why things happen.

Who goes to college to become a better writer, only to end up majoring in Spanish and then finding out she wants to be a pilot her junior year? Well… Eep. Guilty as charged! This truly relates to the fact that sometimes we do not know why things happen the way they do, but we must learn to accept it and move on. Other times we sit and think, “Why hasn’t such and such thing happened yet? Why are things going the way I want them to?” Well, again, it’s time to accept and move on.

I love symbolism and finding out the hidden meaning in things, but 2019 has taught me that it takes time to fully discover anything. And to the unknown moments… Well, there is beauty in those moments as well, even when we want to know more than we do.


2. Fly your own heading.

Okay, I couldn’t not have an aviation-related topic, right? 🙂

This past year has been the most rewarding year in terms of following a journey that should have been begun years ago (which relates to #1). In April I earned my private pilot license. In August I earned my instrument rating. In October I became a ground instructor, and a week ago my dad and I became commercial drone pilots. (Okay, these may seem cool, but some of them are really easy to get, so I promise you can do it too! More on this to come in future posts, I promise.)

In the next month or so I will complete my commercial pilot certification, which will allow me to (finally) get paid for flying instead of paying to fly. Shortly after this I plan to become a CFI (certified flight instructor), which I am really excited to do! There is so much learning in teaching, and I will be very humbled to be able to train young pilots who want to pursue this route.

As for the past few months, I have flown constantly while maintaining a rigorous course load. Somehow I was able to overpower my initial time goal (in regards to flight hours) and found myself enamored with a certain airport in Paso Robles, California. (It became a running joke that I was always flying from Camarillo, CA, to Paso Robles.) When I wasn’t flying to Paso, I visited other haunts such as Monterey and almost-Sacramento in the north; San Diego to the south; and Sedona, Arizona, to the east. (I promise I will write on this soon!)


3. Cut out what distracts you.

For a while my friend and I were doing great with our limited technology mission. What I mean by this is that we both agreed we were spending too much time on our phones and made it our goal to stay off them. During this period I felt rejuvenated at all the things around me. Suddenly I had so much more time to do things away from the screen.

Unfortunately, I’ve gotten pretty bad at being on my phone again. So while this goal of 2019 really did help me for a while, I’ve been off-kilter with it recently. Therefore, I hope that in 2020 I will continue this mission and stay off my phone more.

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Blurry Los Angeles

4. Listen to your intuition.

Sometimes you have to listen to those unsubtle cues in your brain that are telling you to do something. I hope this doesn’t sound too pseudoscientific, but there is power in the mystery that hangs around us every day, and your intuition can be a powerful tool to help you in certain situations. To be honest, this point has guided me for the past few years now, not just in 2019. However, I still like to reflect on how intuition can certainly shape decisions and outcomes as well.


5. Personality types…

This may be the corniest thing on the list, but it’s something I want to reflect on. When I was in high school, I took the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator test. For those of you who aren’t goofballs like me, the MBTI is a personality test that splits you into four major facets: Extraversion/Introversion; Sensing/Intuition; Thinking/Feeling; and Judging/Perceiving.

For years I was an INFP according to this personality test, which means I considered myself a hippie-type who only thought about peace, happiness, and listening to others’ problems (love doctor, anyone?). While this is an extreme stereotype of this personality type, I really did think myself an INFP.

So when I took the test two months ago, I was shook (as the youth say these days) to discover I am actually an INFJ. More on this to come, but I am still reflecting on this personality change.

*Is it actually a personality change, though?* MYSTERY!

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A dork unleashed in the middle of the West (April 2019)

6. Care for others.

This should be an unspoken for us all, but due to our selfish nature we do not realize how important this should be in our lives. Consider Christmas, if you will. Does it feel better when you open a present, or does it feel better when your loved one opens the gift you intentionally made/bought for him/her? When you see his/her eyes light up and a smile flash? Hopefully it is the second option.

2019 has reminded me to care for others. This should be an every year reflection moment for us all… Because this world isn’t just about you. It’s about everyone you know,  and everyone you don’t.


YOUR REFLECTION.

So, my dear readers, now it’s your turn to reflect. What was the best part of your year? What was the worst? What do you want to change for next year? You have a few days to make resolutions, but just know that making a list of resolutions won’t change anything. Instead, your heart has to be in the right place. ❤

Thank you guys so much for joining me on this journey, and I'm excited to hear what you have to share!

Until next time,

-Katie Kay. ❤

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poetry

regret (a poem)

wallow in your grief,
swallow your regret.
dig your nails into my skin,
your words claws in my ribs.
i didn’t ask for this, the answer
a gunshot through my head.

yet you haunt me at night, dear Regret;
you smile at me with scarlet eyes,
your lips pale and pink, teeth starched
white and oily, waiting for me.
you wait to pull the skin from my bones,
and the merriment from my blood.

i didn’t ask for you; i never wanted you.
but instead of sweet wishes and dreams,
curlicues and unicorns and glitter,
you came to my doorstep, holding
a letter, addressed to me from you:
Katie, I got you, when nobody else does.


AN EXPLANATION.

Oh, my dear readers, just know you are not a regret I have!

We all have certain things we regret, whether that be a choice, relationship, you name it. Though I’d like to pretend regrets don’t bother me, deep down they do. So I have a feeling they probably affect you too.

So while it’s fun to write poems about them, it’s not very fun to admit that you do have regrets. But that is why I encourage you (and me too, to be honest) that we cannot change the past, and that we have the beauty to change our trajectory in the present moment. We can do what we need to do to shape the world the way we want, and that’s the power of our choice. Of course, we may not be able to get exactly what we want, but sometimes it’s more about the attempt than the result.


THANK YOU, MY DEAR READERS!

Thank you guys for joining me today. I know I have not published anything in a while, so I just wanted to thank you guys for coming back to this blog after a few weeks of inactivity. This blog is definitely not one of my regrets. ❤

That’s all from me for now. It’s good to be back!

Until next time,

-Katie Kay.

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Sunset over Goleta, California. 

 

poetry

ECHO (a poem)

the echo of my ancestors resounds through me,
a drum that beats within my blood.

sometimes i cannot feel it, but then my heart
untethers, escapes with my lungs.

and yet my ancestors warn me with their stories,
that scream within my addled brain,

but as i stand and listen on the precipice,
i only hear my silent shame


DAY 5 OF THE SEPTEMBER POETRY SERIES!

Thank you, my dear readers, for joining me on the fifth day of this poetry experience. Today’s subject matter has been my favorite subject so far, so I’m really excited to dive into this poem and talk more with you guys about what the heck I’m saying.

Have you ever stood in the middle of the desert and screamed as loud as you can? You pray no one’s listening, because you don’t want to be a weirdo and alarm anyone, but it’s a chance for you to hear nothing but the sound of your own voice. And chances are, depending on if you’re like me and on the edge of a canyon, your voice will come back to you… Warbled, but familiar, and you’re left with a few seconds of echoes.

Echoes are cool. Echolocation and bats are cool too. But today I’m going metaphorical. When I wrote this poetry, I’d just come from class in which a girl had been dogging her father’s political views in front of everyone. To me, this was unacceptable and inappropriate. While it is completely respectable to disagree with someone, to intentionally slander one’s parent in class because of a disagreement is disrespectful.

And, in typical Katie fashion, a poem stemmed from my anger at the situation.

I was born, the child of two amazing parents. While I do not always see eye-to-eye with them (and they certainly don’t see eye-to-eye with me all the time), I still find intense value and respect for them. And I know that within my blood runs my genetic makeup that was given to me from them, the gift of life.

Therefore, the echoes of my ancestors’ decisions run through me. When my heart gallops in my chest from nerves, it’s a leftover relic of my ancestors’ own nervousness. When I’ll fall in love one day, I’m sure the excitement that rushes through my system will be similar to what was once felt my parents, grandparents, and so forth.

We can try to erase history, and we can try to erase our ancestry, but we simply can’t. (Of course, one can try, but the truth will always remain.) And so, as I think of that girl in my class, I wonder if she realizes that the blood that flows within her is a gift of the person she disrespected publicly, the person she shamed publicly.

Echoes only remain with us for a short period of time. Eventually, I’m going to have a child, and pass on my genetic makeup to him or her. And when I die one day, the only evidence of my choices will remain within my sons and daughters. I want my echo to mean something, but I also don’t want to sit and pretend that I am perfect.

That is why we should humble ourselves and thank goodness we can learn from those who came before us…


A RANT CONCLUDED.

Well, I think I wrote more than I intended on that section. While I really do support freedom of speech, I’m not a fan of tearing one’s family down publicly. I just really wish college campuses these days facilitated meaningfulrespectful conversation instead of one-sided, disrespectful conversation. I could write so much more on this, and maybe I will one day.

Well, sorry for this rant. It is concluded now. Only positive energy for the rest of today! Hope you all are doing well. ❤

Until tomorrow,

-Katie Kay.

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thoughts

SOME THOUGHTS…

Hello, my dear readers!

It is so good to be back into the normal operations of this blog! As I said on last week’s Friday post, today we’re going to be diving into my heart rather than poetry or writing. While that is the focus of this blog, I do like to give you guys some insight into what I’m thinking every now and then.

Here are five random things on my mind right now, courtesy of my brain. I hope you enjoy, and that you share your own thoughts with me in return! ❤

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Mountaintop model, hmm? Yeah, probably not! (Mauna Loa, Hawaii // July 2019)

1. “ROUND AND ROUND” BY GEOWULF IS STUCK IN MY HEAD

I have been listening to this song by Australian dream pop group Geowulf for the past few weeks now. It’s pretty introspective, and it’s got a good beat. But we writers tend to gravitate toward the words we see and hear, and that’s what makes Geowulf’s song stand out so much in my head. With lines like “I’ve been running, running from myself” Geowulf asks its audience to contemplate what we’re running from.

Check out the song.


2. KINDNESS IS NOT GIVEN BY ALL

A few days ago I ran into someone whom I hadn’t seen in years. This person had once been a good friend of mine, but we eventually grew apart after an unfortunate confrontation. Just for fun, I decided to drop by my old school, where I happened to see her. I exclaimed her name, genuinely excited to see her, but she realized it was me, said a curt hello, and kept walking.

My heart hurt after this rudeness. Yes, we hadn’t left on the best terms, but her blatant disgust with me hasn’t dimmed in the past few years, which is ridiculous. To think that we’d once been good friends, had parted due to a civil confrontation, and moved on with our lives… And yet she was still acting as if we were seventeen.

The thing is that people are not always going to like us. There are jealousies, mistakes, and petty feuds. It’s how friends become enemies, and allies divide into factions. Though I was upset at first with the rudeness, I considered a few things and realized I’d rather share kindness and receive rudeness than share rudeness and receive kindness.

Hopefully one day I will see her again, and she will be more receptive towards me. Time will tell, especially when one lives in a small town.


3. MY BEST FRIEND AND I WILL BE REUNITED IN ONE WEEK!

Though you will be able to read into my summer updates post on Friday, I do want to say that I’m about to head back to school in California for my final semester of college. While I am not excited for classes, I’m definitely pumped at the thought that my best friend, Miss Givenchy, and I will be back at it again in one short week. 🙂

We’ve been separated for four months, and though it doesn’t feel like it has been that long, it is about time to be reunited once more!


4. PRAYING FOR PEOPLE IS PRETTY COOL

All right. Some of you are going to read this and cringe, but I’ve got to be honest with you guys. As a Christian I’m pretty vocal about my faith, and it’s gotten me through so many things. So I’m going to be as honest on this blog as I would be in real life.

This past summer my church started a program that’s pretty cool, and I think it’s something you guys should do in your own lives. The “Who’s Your One?” initiative is a chance for you to pray for one person in particular for an amount of time you choose. It’s pretty simple: Pick someone who needs some prayer, and spend a few minutes out of your day in thought for him or her.

Some of you are irreligious, but I’m telling you: Praying for somebody else is amazing. It’s not about you; it’s about the person you’re praying for, and to put positive energy out there is exactly what this world needs right now! 🙂


5. WE ALL MAKE MISTAKES, BUT WE MUST BE WILLING TO CORRECT THEM

A few days ago I was flying my airplane. I had to take park it in a very tight spot, and I was alone in pushing it back. Now Cessna 172s are not super easy to navigate (on the ground at least), and I’m a sponge when it comes to strength. So there I was, a noodle of a girl trying every maneuver possible to move this airplane off the taxiway, when I heard a pop! and my heart about burst and popped too.

I looked down and saw I’d broken a piece off the horizontal stabilizer in my attempt to move the airplane. Somehow, despite not having the strength to move my plane, I’d had the strength to break a piece off it.

Not my smartest move, not by a mile.

After finding a mechanic and reporting my error, I took a deep breath and thought to myself: Okay. You found the man responsible for repairs. You’ve offered to pay for it. You’ve done the paperwork. You’ve beat yourself up a bit, and there’s nothing more to do.

Sometimes our mistakes are big ones. Sometimes our mistakes are small ones, though they can feel much bigger in the moment. Whatever it is, we must remember our response to our human error is just as important as what we’ve done. Nobody’s perfect, and everybody should know that by now. 🙂

And guess what? We learn from our mistakes in the process.

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Why not post a random picture like this? (Somewhere in Chile // November 2017)

YOUR THOUGHTS!

Now it’s your turn. What are some things that have been on your mind lately? If you don’t want to share in the comments below, I challenge you to find a piece of paper and jot down five things that you can’t stop thinking about. 🙂

Thank you guys for being part of this blog. It means the world to me! I know I say that all the time, but it’s true.

Until next time,

-K. ❤

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poetry

seaweed (a poem)

seaweed like a corpse slices
across the beach, with tendrils
like emerald fingers clutching
for the briny, golden shore.

i walk to it, curiosity seeping
out of me, wondering why
it looks as if medusa’s scalp
has suddenly washed ashore.

where did this come from?
why now did the sublime sea
think it timely to spit up
this messy creature before me?

but eventually my interest
fades, just like the sunset
slipping across this
balance beam of horizon.

there is so much more here
than this beached seaweed:
there is the stab of mystery
that brings me to the edge.


AN EXPLANATION.

Hello, my dear readers!

I am sorry I have been MIA lately (check out next Friday’s blog post for the explanation). You guys give me so much inspiration, and I do feel like I have been missing out in the past few days, as I have not been active on WordPress. That being said, I am back and very much excited to be part of this community’s happenings!

“seaweed” is a poem I wrote for creative writing class last autumn. It’s not one of my favorite poems, but I thought it would be applicable to this blog, as we like to discuss philosophy and mystery here at Katie Kay.

There is something poignant about things we cannot fully understand. Maybe what I mean by this is that we see something as vast and powerful as the ocean, and despite knowing what it is, we’re not really able to fathom it completely. Okay, some of you skeptics out there are like: “Huh? What is this girl talking about?” But I’m here to say that when I look out into the vast beyond, I am normally quite astounded by the immense unknowns. We don’t know what all is there, despite having a basic understanding of what the ocean is.

Here I go again rambling, but I’m serious: Consider a place in nature, and think on it for a second. Maybe your place is a park in your hometown, or a mountaintop that has special meaning to you, or a beach where you dig your toes into the sand. Imagine yourself there, and then close your eyes. Hear the sound of the ocean, or the wind, or the whistle of the birds. Fully envision yourself there.

Now reflect on what you feel, what you’re thinking, what you’re imagining, as you dive into this place you’ve chosen. Probably you’ve found yourself wondering a whole lot more about your world than this special place in your heart.

Today I challenge you to take a moment and reflect on your life. We’re not guaranteed every day on this planet, so we must make the most of the time we’ve got. And for me, that’s finding solace in nature, even when things aren’t as pretty as they seem.

Okay! We will have a brighter post on Monday. I think Monday will be a “life” post, and then you can expect an “update” post next Friday, in which I explain what I’ve been up to.

I’m very excited to get back into the swing of reading your posts, and I mean that! Thank you for keeping up with me in the meantime.

-K.

 

writing

CATCH THE WIND (a short story)

EVERY WHICH WAY there are faces.

Black, white, brown, yellow, red, pink skin. Giant, small, lopsided, almond-shaped eyes. Broken hearts, swelling pride, fragmented dreams, wondering what happened to fuel them this far.

A billion stories reside within the souls of these people, and the depths of discovery here have no limit. There must be millions on these busy streets, in the swelling metropolis of New York City, as the hubbub of car horns blasts from the roads. But I don’t want to be anywhere else, even as their body heat turns my cheeks ruddy and a woman falls over me.

 It is chaos: A sweet, simple, human chaos. A chaos I don’t pay attention to often, a deep dream that is blurred by my career, my family, the city itself. Usually I am a thoughtless wanderer, off to work, off to the routine. But for a strange reason, today, I watch those around me.

A girl on her father’s shoulders stares out in the sea of bodies asking for cotton candy.

Businessmen and women chirp into phones, sipping on warm coffees, pupils aglow with the thought of greenbacks.

A hipster dances past, headphones deep in his ears.

A young teenager attempts to read a novel without bumping into anyone else. Good luck, kid. I wish I had that skill.

A few paces ahead, the dark red hair of a woman catches my eye–that luminosity, the shine, a color that stands out anywhere.

But it’s when my mind captures individual faces, I am astounded by the complexity of our world, and how this is where I am meant to be at this exact moment. For a reason. My heart swells inside me like a rushing tide ready to break free onto warm sand. Humanity is unimaginable, incomprehensible, and I am a witness to the individual facets of this species. 

And then I see him.

Up ahead, a tall man glides down the road, a peculiar hat perched on his head despite the cloudy day, the perfect weather. He glances back, sweat trickling down his cheeks like dripping candle wax. My eyes unfalteringly set on him. He blends into the crowd. His head bobs over the regulars and the tourists, but there is nothing special about him. Normal features, normal attire, normal everything, really. Could be a banker or a teacher, who knows. He tugs on his hat a few times, pulling it closer to his crown. Maybe he’s a murderer, I decide in the loneliness of my skull; maybe he’s an angel. He glances back around him, avoiding stubborn souls sweeping down the sidewalk.

Somehow–and for whatever reason–he locks eyes with me. As my gaze focuses in on his warm amber irises, it happens like magic: He is gone, a departed ghost. A mysterious flash, within the blink of an eye.

I stop in my tracks. A man barrels over me, and then like the parting of the Red Sea, people swim around me down the street. But I pay no attention. I look down the way to the spot where I saw this man disappear, and a squirmy ache in my heart sickens me. What did I witness? He was gone in a literal flash, like the sudden disappearance of the sun on a perfect day.

With careful examination of the crowd, I see nothing. Even if he didn’t disappear or I simply blinked and he was gone, I would never be able to find him, not with the hordes of people pushing past me now. They pass me by, their arms grazing my flesh, and I realize how lonely inside I am, how crazy I must be. People don’t disappear into the clouds. With a thumping heartbeat, I look up into the sky, as if this is a plausible way the man left the streets. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn’t.

Tiny teardrops of water hit my nose. Did anyone else notice? 


AN EXPLANATION.

Oh, my beautiful readers! This post is one of the weirdest I’ve done in a while, and that’s because of the story around it.

As some of you guys know, I’m working on a novel right now called Church Boy. It’s a 55,000 word Christian romance novel that I’m hoping to publish soon. And somehow as I was editing this book late at night on August 5, I stumbled upon my Submittable account. What is Submittable, and why does it matter?

Submittable is a way for writers to query multiple agents at once. It’s an easy tool to use, and somehow I fumbled upon my account and saw my previous works I’ve sent off to agents in the past few years. And “Catch the Wind” was one of them.

According to this entry date, I submitted this short story to a magazine in February 2015. (Over four years ago, what in the world?). Now what’s really wild is that I have no trace of this short story on my new computer, and I don’t remember writing it. That being said, I know this short story is important, because as I read it, I thought to myself: Why not put this on the blog?

“Catch the Wind” is a short story that made me stop in my tracks, now that I’m reading it four years later, because it convicted me. It made me think that I pass so many people on a daily basis, and I ignore them. It isn’t humanly possible to recognize every single person on the face of the earth, but I do think we have a responsibility to put our energy into the people who come into our lives unexpectedly.

In 2019 it is easy to hide behind a screen, especially in public places. We’re selfish people, and we tend to find momentary happiness in stroking our own egos, but I believe there is long-standing joy in strengthening our relationships with others. This can happen through budding friendships, waving at strangers, and casual conversation with an old friend.

What I mean is that we have a limited amount of time on this planet, and we need to make the most of it. When we see that someone’s hurting, we need to help him or her. When our intuition goes off and implores us to help another, we should follow this sense.

This life is much more about we can individually do. It’s about coming together, as corny as that may sound.

Because what if, going back to my story, we are the man who disappears into thin air? What happens then?

Okay, enough ramblings from me now. I just thought this story would be a perfect Friday morning blog post, and I hope you enjoy this little guy from a seventeen-year-old Katie Kay.

More on Monday!

-K. ❤

Volcanoes National Park, Hawai’i (July 2019)

poetry

on the cusp (a poem)

when life feels like an hourglass,
i seek solace in what i love most:
fingers strewn over the keys
of a dirty MacBook Air,
eyes strained from the creamy glow
of a blank Word document,
my mind finally relaxed,
a digital massage.

what can i craft, like an architect
and blueprints and concrete magic?
where can i go, like a world traveler
and tennis shoes and a weathered map?
who will i meet, like a writer
and a pen and a sheet of paper?
the possibilities are endless,
and they are mine.

when the stress is overwhelming,
and the real world clamps down tight,
i remember my sweet escape,
the riskiness of a writer and her
invented world. my blood boils
as i pan for gold, waiting on the cusp
of my world to unleash itself
upon my very fingertips.


AN EXPLANATION.

Hello, my beautiful and wonderful readers!

I hope you all are doing great as we begin this new week in August 2019. For today’s post, I wanted to share with you all this poem I wrote in autumn 2018, and I think it will relate to a lot of you who are writers and wish to showcase your emotions to the world.

For writers there is almost no greater passion than chugging out our thoughts on paper (or in my case, a Word doc hehe). We have thoughts and emotions bubbling to the surface of our blood, and there is no escape greater than releasing what we need to express. As a writer, I have found that this process is almost like taking a crucial test: There is buildup and anxiety that is followed by relieved elation at finishing the test. (Of course, the grader is one’s audience, but that is another story altogether.)

“on the cusp” can relate to more than just writing. Some of you have other passions that you must share with the world. I’m serious. You may think I’m lying, but I truly believe each and every one of you have an amazing purpose that has put you on Earth at this particular moment in time. So, if you’re not exactly sure what your “sweet escape is,” take a moment and reflect today.

What relieves your stress? What frees you from the pressures of this world? What gives you the greatest joy?

Consider, and make an effort to implement more of your time into your joy.

Much love,

-Katie Kay. ❤

travel

5 DAYS IN HAWAI’I

Hello, my dear readers!

Now that we are done with the two-week poetry series, I am excited to share some other content with you guys. As you know, this blog is devoted to various topics, including writing, philosophy, and travel. Since it has been a while since we’ve done a travel post, I thought it would be perfect timing to share with you guys a recent trip of mine… To the Big Island of Hawai’i!

This was my first time to Hawai’i, and I have to say it was one for the books. I encourage you all to check out Hawai’i at some point, because it is a nature lover’s dream. (Really it is anyone’s dream. There is so much to do!)

Therefore I’d like to share some things I got the chance to do, and maybe this will sell you on your next vacation. 🙂

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A sweet Pomeranian named Precious, a friendly Hawaiian pooch. (Hāwī, Hawai’i // July 2019)


DAY 1

Stops: North Kohala Coast, Waimea
Activities: Intro to local area, shops, etc.

After arriving in the small town of Kona on the Big Island, my family quickly hopped in our rental Jeep and headed north to the Kohala Coast. We stayed at a quaint cabin called the Kohala Lodge. Gorgeous view, idyllic, pastoral scene–it was a perfect way to start out a vacation (and throw in goats and ponies down the hill!).

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Kohala Lodge, a premier cabin in Hāwī, Hawaii (July 2019)

After check in, we took a trek to Waimea, a small town nestled between green mountains and a Nevada-looking desert scene. I wish I had a good picture of the drive between Hāwī and Waimea, but unfortunately I do not. Just trust me, and imagine rolling hills with mountain and ocean backdrops!


DAY 2

Stops: Mauna Loa, Hilo
Activities: Encounter Mauna Kea protestors; travel Mauna Loa to its tip; visit Hilo, largest “city” on island

Day 2 was an opportunity to explore more of the island! We got up early, headed to the center of the island, and wondered if we were going to drive straight through an environmental protest… And we did.

Mauna Kea, the world’s tallest mountain (taller than even Mt. Everest, when you look at its oceanic base), is a sacred mountaintop to many Hawaiians. In the meantime, the company TMT wishes to replace a collection of telescopes on the tip top of Mauna Kea with a new, state-of-the-art telescope that could potentially pollute natural waters for the residents.

Hawaiians are very divided on this issue. On one hand, environmentalists wish to preserve the beauty and integrity of Mauna Kea; on the other, the telescope would bring endless opportunity for astronomers. The telescope’s construction would also provide economic opportunity for the island.

Whatever your position on this issue may be, my family and I just wanted to avoid a roadblock in the middle of this desert landscape. And we ended up driving straight through the protest, passing hundreds of people on a mission to block the telescope’s construction.

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My sister and I being dorks on the road to Mauna Loa (not pictured). What is pictured, however, is Mauna Kea behind us, the tallest mountain in the world. If you look close enough, you can see hundreds of cars in the background due to an environmental protest. (Mauna Loa // July 2019)

Instead we decided to traverse Mauna Loa, the world’s biggest mountain (not tallest!). After going up 11,000 feet we were tired, hungry for oxygen, and descended into the lusher area of Hilo, about an hour to the east.

We did not stay in Hilo very long, though the weather was pretty nice, despite Hilo’s status as the fourth-rainiest American town. We visited Rainbow Falls and headed north after lunch at none other than Taco Bell (blech!) to see Akaka Falls (pictured below).

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Akaka Falls (A short drive from Hilo)

After a quick stop at Akaka Falls, I found an abandoned airstrip on Google Maps. For those of you who don’t know, I’m a baby pilot who loves aviation quite a bit, and I made us head up an old road once used for the production of sugar cane.

We were probably pretty dumb doing this, but it was a lot of fun, especially when we got to the end of the road and realized we were already driving on the overgrown runway. Who knows the history of Waipunalei Airstrip, because I couldn’t find anything online, and I highly doubt many people today know of its existence. That’s why it was shocking to find it on Google Maps.

Whatever the case, it was a highlight of my trip: An abandoned airstrip with a lot of buried history.

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An abandoned road that leads to the eerie and also abandoned Waipunalei Airstrip (North of Hilo)


DAY 3

Stops: Kona, Captain Cook
Activities: Snorkeling Adventure, Captain Cook Monument, The Painted Church

Kona is located on the leeward side of the island, and it’s a town of about 12,000 people. Though we did not spend much time in Kona itself (a quick lunch at Denny’s and a stop at Walmart for supplies), we were much more invested in a snorkeling excursion in a little town to the south called Captain Cook.

Unfortunately I do not have any pictures of this activity, despite it being my favorite part of the entire trip, due to the fact that I didn’t want to lose my phone in the kayaking portion of the journey. However, you’ll just have to imagine brilliant blue water and a whole lot of tourists swimming about as kayakers push against the shore to see the Captain Cook monument. (Captain James Cook was a famous explorer who was killed by Hawaiians in this namesake town.)

This experience was made even better by our friendly tour guide, Lalu, a local who showed us the best places to snorkel while giving us a little history of the area and its ties to Captain Cook’s ultimate demise.

After the three mile roundtrip kayak experience, we headed back to our car, changed clothes, and stopped at The Painted Church, a Catholic church about ten minutes from our kayak point. The Painted Church is well-known due to its painted interior, as the first priests who journeyed to Hawai’i explained biblical stories to locals through paintings on the church’s walls.

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(The Painted Church // South Kona, Hawai’i)

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Cemetery at The Painted Church (South Kona Hawai’i)

 


DAY 4

Stops: North Kohala Coast, Waikoloa Village
Activities: Sunrise Hike, Zipline Adventures, Luau at Marriott

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Sunrise hike at Polulu Valley (North Kohala Coast)

My dad and I are fans of hiking, while my mom and sister are not. So when we suggested getting up at five to catch this ideal spot, my mom and sister laughed at us, and we went anyway.

The forty-five minute roundtrip hike spans incredible views of the Polulu Valley and coastline. Polulu is located at the very end of a main road on the Kohala Coast, so not many people were around–especially at the ungodly hour of sunrise. (Although we did run into a weird woman who was possibly worshipping a plant.)

The hike was stunningly beautiful, and a perfect reminder that sometimes you’ve just gotta bite the bullet, set your alarm, and run down a mountain in the darkness to wait for the perfect sunrise.

After our hike, we headed home, showered, and got prepped for a zipline activity in the nearby town of Kapaau. It was an incredible experience to zip through hundred-foot trees, but after so many activities I was quite ready for a nap by the end of our adventures (see the image below).

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Kohala Zipline Activity, and an eager Katie Kay (Hāwī, Hawai’i)

Post zipline, we showered once more and then headed to the resort town of Waikoloa Village in order to catch a sunset luau. This was my mom’s favorite experience of the entire trip, as it was a chance to listen to traditional Hawaiian music and see the hula and other Polynesian dances.

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Beautiful sunset luau at Marriott Waikoloa Village


DAY 5

Stops: Volcanoes National Park, Black Sands, South Kona
Activities: Quick hikes, Pu’uhonua O Hõnaunau National Park

Our last day on the island was a packed one. While we were staying on the Big Island’s North Coast, Volcanoes National Park is located on the opposite side of the island, roughly a two-hour drive away. Plus it was a foggy and rainy morning, which you can see in the pictures below.

That didn’t stop us from making the journey down to Volcanoes. There are no current lava flows (thank goodness, and hopefully everyone has recovered from the volcano issues from a few years ago), but there are various pockets of steam located throughout the park. We also journeyed to the crater of a volcano (although we stayed at the rim). If you look close enough at the picture below, you can see that there are trails in the middle of this crater, and people are walking in it! I was not that brave, to say the least.

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Creepy sight at Volcanoes National Park

After an hour at the park, which is not enough time, we had to hurry down to Black Sands, about a twenty minute drive away. This is a black sand beach that is pretty peaceful. Since we were in a time crunch, we could not stay long, but I’m thankful for the time I got there.

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Black Sands (Southern tip of the island)

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Pu’uhonua O Hõnaunau National Park (South Kona)

After Black Sands, we headed to Pu’uhonua O Hõnaunau National Park in order to learn more about Hawaiian culture. Pu’uhonua O Hõnaunau is located on sacred grounds, and it was very important to take a few moments to educate ourselves on traditions of the area.

While the other parts of the island were quite chilly in the fog and rain, Pu’uhonua O Hõnaunau National Park was humid and hot–too much like home for my liking.

After our stop there, we hurried back to the north, grabbed some dinner, and started packing for our ten-hour return trip, which was a beast of its own, as you can imagine. 🙂


PLEASE GO SEE THE ISLAND YOURSELF.

Hawai’i is an incredible place. It’s laid-back island living, and it would be so easy to get lost there for ages. That being said, I’m a pretty fast-paced person, and I found myself wanting to hop on a plane and go see the other islands that comprise this great state.

While the aforementioned stops were what my family did on our trip, I’m sure there are countless more places we missed. The island is an island, but its diversity is incredible. Where else can one drive through a desert to a tropical rainforest in an hour or less?

Go check out Hawai’i. Maybe I’ll see you there someday. 🙂

As for now, I’m back at home in the throes of studies. But do you want my honest opinion? Really there is no place like home, especially after a long vacation away.

You guys are amazing.

-K. ❤

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Laupahoehoe Point Beach Park (North of Hilo)