Zodiac Sign Book Recommendations

While Thanksgiving just ended, winter break is coming up sooner than you would think. With that in mind, many may begin planning meet ups with friends and family, travel plans or plans with yourself to binge watch the twenty shows and movies you didn’t have time to watch during the semester because you were drowning in the amount of homework and exams you had… No matter how you decide to spend your break, if you are anything like me, the idea of spending some of your downtime reading a book for your own pleasure rather than for an assignment may sound appealing (and if it doesn’t, my inner English major is quaking).

WINTER BREAK iS SO CLOSE Memegenerator Net Winter Break IS SO CLOSE -  Excitedmeme | Meme Generator | Meme on ME.ME
Winter break is so close meme

The daunting question then is “what should I read?” This question plagues us all at some point or another, but today I am going to share a fool proof answer, so that when winter break rolls around (or the next time you have some time to read) you will be prepared and won’t have to put any added thought into it. I must preface this by saying I am absolutely not an astrology expert, but I read a lot of books and I read my horoscope everyday so I am also not at a complete loss. The list below I have then created by taking the description of each zodiac sign and matching them to a book that I think correlates with the sign. This list contains books of many different genres to give some variety so if you end up not liking the recommendation assigned to your zodiac sign maybe try pretending you have a different birthday.

Aries (March 21-April 19)

Aries is represented by the symbol of the ram and the element of fire. Aries are considered to be innovative and stubborn. With this, they become very fearless in the face of challenges and controversies. They are able to keep an optimistic attitude in all that they do, as well as being very social and ambitious. As they are so ambitious they can also become short tempered, impatient, and selfish, making them aggressive at times.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline is a novel based in 2045 following the experience of Wade Watts, a teenager struggling through life. The OASIS is a virtual world where a majority of humanity spends their time in order to feel better rather miserable existence. Wade is no exception and when the creator of the OAASIS dies leaving behind a series of puzzles based on pop culture references of the past, he faces the challenge head on. The novel explores the lengths Watts will go to in order to inherit OASIS, its fortune, and avoid rival competitors who are willing to kill to win. Aries are willing to go to great lengths to get what they want just as Wade does in this novel. Aries can relate to the ambition turned aggressiveness that Wade experiences throughout the novel while also experiencing a deep social connection to the community that Wade builds over the course of his journey.

Ready Player One: A Novel: Cline, Ernest
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline novel cover

Taurus (April 20-May 20)

Taurus is represented by the symbol of the bull and the element of Earth. Taurus are known for being reliable but also very stubborn. They seek out the more pleasurable things in life and and try to take their time in everything that they do. They essentially stick to their own schedule and get set in their own behaviors which can make it hard for them to change. Taurus can be very relaxing to be around due to their patience and enjoyment of luxury but they can seem unfriendly and rather closed-minded due to their hard-headedness.

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven focuses on high schoolers Theodore Finch and Violet Markey. Both are struggling: Theodore with his obsession with death and Violet with her sister’s death. Violet hopes to avoid social interactions, graduate, and leave for college to escape her pain while Theodore focuses on the present as he ideates on death but seemingly always finds a reason to live. When they meet by chance on the ledge of their school’s bell tower they seem to save each other and quickly become dependent on one another but as Violet is learning to live again, Theodore is running out of reasons to keep living. While this book is focused on a rather difficult subject, it really hones in on the idea of the stubborn but reliable person in the form of Violet and how she works with and learns from someone who is her total opposite. Similarly, Theodore finds himself only becoming his true self when with Violet and Violet must work through how to help Theodore while also sorting through her own emotions. This is a book that many taurus will be able to relate to in terms of the emotional rollercoaster of emotions they experience.

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven book cover

Gemini (May 21-June 20)

Gemini is represented by the symbol of the twins and the element of air. Gemini are typically outgoing, curious, quick on their feet, and very adaptable. They love to know information including data, research, and gossip which is why they thrive in conversations. While gemini are friendly, energetic, and fun, they can also be the exact opposite (i.e. the twin). They are known for being two-faced, superficial, and super flakey. While gemini may seem to have good intentions, they often struggle to follow through.

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman is a book focusing on cranky old Ove, a man with strict principles who many associate with being bitter. When Ove gets new neighbors in the form of a young couple and their young children and they run over his mailbox, he is thrown into an unlikely friendship that in the end changes the understanding that all of his neighbors had of him. This heartwarming story pulls on the curiosity of gemini and really brings out the idea of the twin personality. Gemini are likely to be able to relate to Ove and the misunderstanding that most people have of him.

Amazon.com: A Man Called Ove: A Novel: 9781476738024: Backman, Fredrik:  Books
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman book cover

Cancer (June 21-July 22)

Cancer is represented by the symbol of the crab and the element of water. Cancers lead with their emotions and can be rather sensitive. Their mood changes very often which can lead to them being closed off and a little passive aggressive. Cancers are very hot and cold making it hard to know when they will be loving and protective or needy and defensive.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn is a thrilling murder mystery focusing on husband and wife Nick and Amy Dunne. After their fifth wedding anniversary “perfect” Amy completely disappears. An investigation begins and the should be worried husband Nick begins to act inappropriately and overall just does not know how to handle himself. Through Amy’s diary though, the reader is shown that “cool girl” Amy has a darker side to her. As the investigation heightens, Nick’s lies and odd behavior grow. Nick is a little odd and rather bitter but the questions remains if he could have really killed Amy. Cancers will be able to relate to the ever changing emotions presented by both Nick and Amy. They will also be drawn in by the many twists and turns that Amy takes the reader on and the ever growing passive aggressiveness that comes out of it.

Amazon.com: Gone Girl: A Novel eBook : Flynn, Gillian: Books
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn book cover

Leo (July 23-August 22)

Leo is represented by the symbol of the lion and the element of fire. Leos are rather dramatic and theatrical and very passionate about what they do. They LOVE to be in the spotlight and enjoy being in charge. They are known for their consistency and loyalty even among the drama that surrounds them. Their ego and jealousy become their downfall though. At times if they feel threatened that their light is being taken from them or if someone encroaches on their relationships then they begin to threaten their own happiness and those around them.

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng considers secrets and lies and the weight they have on families and communities as well as the dangers of always abiding by the rules. This book takes place in the “perfect” suburb of Cleveland, Shaker Heights. In this town everyone is rule abiding and Elena Richardson embodies this. When fun and artistic single mother Mia Warren moves to town and rents a house from Elena, Elena’s black and white world becomes a bit more colorful. Mia and Elena’s children soon become friends and the town becomes divided through an ongoing custody battle that has drawn the town’s attention. Realizing they are on opposing sides of the battle, Elena becomes even more suspicious of Mia and attempts to uncover Mia’s secrets which might just blow up in Elena’s face. This novel threatens leo’s need for consistency and loyalty and presses on all of the right buttons for these drama lovers.

Amazon.com: Little Fires Everywhere: 9780525505556: Books
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng book cover

Virgo (August 23-September 22)

Virgo is represented by the maiden symbol and the element of earth. Virgos are incredibly logic based and love to approach issues and life in general in a practical and systematic way. They are typically kind and helpful and make great supportive friends. These things make virgos hyperaware and strive for goals that are unattainable. They must learn to accept their flaws and to stop looking for perfection.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas focuses on 16 year old Starr who must balance living in a poor neighborhood and going to school at a rich prep school. When she witnesses her unarmed childhood best friend get shot by a police officer the balance breaks. The world is divided as some are calling him a drug dealer, some are going to the streets protesting in his name, and the local drug lord is threatening Starr’s family, but only Starr knows the truth and she must decide whether to step up or stay silent. Virgos will be able to relate to Starr as a character and her struggle to be the perfect ideal daughter, friend, and student while trying to stay true to her values. They will also be able to appreciate the bond between Starr and her friends and the challenges they face.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble®
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas book cover

Libra (September 23- October 22)

Libra is represented by the scales of justice symbol and the element of air. Libras love to have symmetry and balance in their lives and love to be surrounded by beauty and money. Relationships are incredibly important to them and look for people that compliment their looks and who they consider fashionable. Libras find their downfall in trying to keep everyone around them happy, focusing too much on material things, and struggling with major indecision.

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde focuses on a handsome young man named Dorian who has his portrait painted and falls in love with his own beauty. He becomes obsessed with the idea that the man in his portrait will stay forever youthful while he will age and become undesirable. He vows to give up his soul if the painting aged and he stayed his youthful self forever. Dorian, upon realizing this has come true, begins living a life of corruption and immorality as only the portrait seems to suffer the consequences. Libras will be able to learn from Dorian’s obsession with material values and specifically his own looks. They will be further drug in by Dorian’s constant moral indecision and the want to fix Dorian’s lack of awareness for those around him.

Amazon.com: Picture of Dorian Gray, The (Leatherbound Classic Collection)  by Oscar Wilde (2011) Leather Bound: 9781435129757: Wilde, Oscar: Books
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde book cover

Scorpio (October 23-November 21)

Scorpio is represented by the symbol of the scorpion and the element of water. They know what they want and are not afraid to do what it takes to get it. They are often seen as being seductive and crave physical and emotional intimacy with others even if it just means hugging someone. While they can come off as ambitious this can sometimes turn into controlling and egotistic.

Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut is a classic anti-war book that focuses on the firebombing of Dresden during WWII. Vonnegut uses his own first hand experience of the bombing and the war to tell Billy Pilgrim’s story of being a draftee, prisoner of war, optometrist, husband, father, time traveler, and alien abductee. Scorpios will appreciate Vonnegut’s dedication to the book and writing Billy’s story while also finding unrest in Billy’s ability to live many different versions of his own life but seemingly not have control of any of them.

Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance with Death by  Kurt Vonnegut, Paperback | Barnes & Noble®
Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut book cover

Sagittarius (November 22- December 21)

Sagittarius is represented by the symbol of the archer and the element of fire. Sagittarius are extremely curious, passionate, and adaptable. They are open to almost any adventure and their yearning for knowledge knows no end. They thrive off of change and being able to show their adaptability in different situations. They search for both freedom both creatively and spiritually. With all of this self expression and exploring though comes very brutal honesty and bluntness that some are not able to appreciate which causes hard feelings.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle focuses on siblings Meg and Charles Wallace and their friend Calvin. Meg and Charles Wallace’s father was experimenting with fifth dimension time travel when he strangely goes missing. Years later when the opportunity presents itself for the trio to try and save the sibling’s father they pursue it, but they are faced with evil forces in space that are much more powerful than they were expecting. This novel will have the adventure focused sagittarius hooked from the start. Sagittarius will be able to relate to Meg’s adaptability and the freedom she experiences through this journey.

Amazon.com: A Wrinkle in Time (Time Quintet): 9780312367541: Madeleine  L'Engle, Madeleine L'Engle: Books
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle book cover

Capricorn (December 22-January 19)

Capricorn is represented by the symbol of the sea goat and the element of earth. Capricorn are known for being hard working, dedicated, and focused on obtaining perfection. They will not let anything get in their way of being successful and often experience hardships in their youth making them seem mature beyond their years. As they get older they start to open up more but often come off as cold and unemotional. While they may seem like workaholics, deep down they love to have fun and party.

The Hobbit, or There and Back Again by J.R.R. Tolkien focuses on a hobbit named Bilbo Baggins. He lives a very comfortable life in which he does not seem to really have any goals and just enjoys life in his home. One day though wizard Gandalf and a group of dwarves arrive at his home prepared to take him with them to raid the treasure that is guarded by the dragon Smaug. As Bilbo reluctantly joins them he finds himself confronting magic, strange creatures, soldiers, and many other dangers. While capricorns won’t necessarily appreciate Bilbo’s lack of drive, they will appreciate his organized lifestyle and Bilbo’s developed sense to prove himself. Bilbo will show capricorns the joys of the balance of work and fun.

Amazon.com: The Hobbit: 9780547928227: J. R. R. Tolkien: Books
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkein book cover

Aquarius (January 20-February 18)

Aquarius is represented by the symbol of the water bearer and the element of air. Aquarius are free spirited, eccentric, and refuse to conform to society. They support social progress and tend to despise authority. They typically are big thinkers who often get lost in their own minds and become so focused on trying to make big changes that they often forget about their own relationships and the smaller steps that need to be taken before completing their larger goal. They love their freedom and often need space to do their work but thrive in a community setting with like minded people.

Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne focuses on Professor Lidenbrock, his nephew, and their hired guide. After finding instructions left by a medieval alchemist claiming to have discovered a passage to the center of the earth, they decide to go looking for it. They travel deep into an Icelandic volcano and face dangers unlike anything imaginable all in the search for the great unknown. This novel is sure to please the eccentric and free spirited nature of an Aquarius. They will be able to live out all of their dream like adventure fantasies through this novel and will relate to Professor Lidenbrock’s enduring drive to explore the unknown.

Journey to the Center of the Earth (Dover Children's Evergreen Classics):  Verne, Jules: 9780486822495: Amazon.com: Books
Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne book cover

Pisces (February 19-March 20)

Pisces is represented by the symbol of the fish and the element water. They are divided by the ideas of fantasy and reality as their immense sensitivity allows them to be pulled into their own thoughts and imagination while often needing to be pulled back into reality. They often view life through “rose tint glasses” and especially so when faced by a problem. With this, they are known as being incredibly flaky and seeming delusional. While they have trouble accepting reality they are often incredibly kind and creative.

The Giver by Lois Lowry focuses on 12 year old Jonas who lives in a world free of all the bad things in life and where color does not exist. Everything in their lives is assigned to them and they are given no real choices but everyone seems to live in happiness. At the age of 12 everyone is assigned their job that they will do for the rest of their lives. Jonas is assigned a job that very few are given: “Memory Keeper.” Their society has been kept away from the negative things in life but the Memory Keeper must keep all of the bad and good memories of society’s past within them. When this job becomes more than what Jonas expects, his entire world changes and he is forced to make decisions no child should be faced with. Pisces will enjoy the convergence of reality and fantasy in this novel and will be able to relate to Jonas’s struggle through understanding this divide.

Amazon.com: The Giver: 9780385732550: Lowry, Lois: Books
The Giver by Lois Lowry book cover

Micaela | 2022

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/.

A Poet From Our Generation

Poet Amanda Gorman reads at Joe Biden’s inauguration on 20 January 2021 in Washington, DC
 (PATRICK SEMANSKY/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Amanda Gorman came to life on my TV screen on January 20th, 2021. It is now well over a year later and I still cannot get out of my head the powerful image of her standing in front of the Capitol Building wearing her bright yellow coat and thick red headband. She recited her poem “The Hill We Climb” and captivated the nation. Her articulation and cadence were mesmerizing as well as her hand movements and gestures. Amanda Gorman used the power of poetry to bring light to what it meant to be an American. Something I cannot personally relate to as an international student at McDaniel, but I was still amazed by her.  

Amanda Gorman was born in Los Angles in 1998 (Zelazko). She published her poetry collection at the age of 16 which caught the attention of many important people . This led to her being invited to perform for the Obama administration, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Al Gore, Hillary Clinton, Malala Yousafzai, and others. She graduated from Harvard in 2020 with a B.A. in Sociology. Amanda was the first-ever National Youth Poet Laureate in the United States and since then has had achieved what only some could dream of (Zelazko).

Since the inauguration Amanda became the first poet to perform at the Super Bowl (her poem, “Chorus of the Captains,” honours an educator, a nurse, and a veteran) (Zelazko). She also signed a modeling contract and published a special edition of her inaugural poem. Later in 2021 Gorman cohosted the Met Gala, the annual benefit for the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, with actor Timothée Chalamet, singer Billie Eilish, and tennis player Naomi Osaka. In addition, she debuted a children’s book, Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem, and published a collection of poetry, Call Us What We Carry (formerly titled The Hill We Climb, and Other Poems) (Zelazko).

Poetry can seem very boring and distant for college age people. Most of the poets that we learn about are old and/or died years ago. Amanda Gorman is a poet from our generation, she is writing about what it is like to be 20 year-olds in this day and age, and she looks like us. Poetry is beautiful and can be very relatable, you just need to find a poet that speaks to you. For me that poet was Amanda Gorman and hopefully she can be the same to others. If you have not watched her inauguration speech go do so. If you have watched it then give her other work a read, you might be surprised.

Works Cited

 Zelazko, Alicja. “Amanda Gorman”. Encyclopedia Britannica, 3 Mar. 2022, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Amanda-Gorman. Accessed 21 March 2022. 

Gratitude Journaling: The Suitable Solution for Stressed Scholars

College is a stressful time! Young adults are thrown into a new environment, often many miles from their home and are required to become functionally independent. With the pressures of academic success, the milieu of social challenges, and the financial burden of college life, college is often the time when people first experience mental health distress.

Depression is a major issue among U.S. college students. A survey by the World Health Organization in 2018 found that major depression had a lifetime prevalence of 28.7 % among first-year American college students (Auerbach 2018).

There are numerous potential options for mental health treatment, including counseling, therapy, and psychiatric prescriptions; however, these options are often inaccessible to students due to affordability. Further, many students do not consider themselves to be distressed, but simply want to remove the excess baggage gained from college life so they can become more productive and happier individuals.

Luckily there is an option that is affordable, independent, and science-backed — journaling!

The term journal refers to a form of personal writing that expresses perceptions, experiences, dreams, and creativity from the perspective of the self. The word comes from the French root word “jour,” meaning day, and it is often used to depict a form of habitual daily writing and reflection (Haertl 2008).

Positive affect journaling (PAJ), also known as gratitude journaling, is one of the most common forms of journaling used within clinical settings. With this form of journaling, one must regularly identify positive aspects of their life that can be attributed to an external source or actions outside of their control (Weiner 1985). With short 15 minutes sessions, only 3 times a week, PAJ was “associated with decreased mental distress and increased well-being relative to baseline” in general medical patients after 12 weeks (Smyth 2018).

Similar benefits have been displayed within college students. A study on first-year undergraduate students found students “who engaged in 3 weeks of daily reflective gratitude journaling showed significant gains in gratitude, adjustment to college life, satisfaction with life and positive affect” (Isik 2017).

So how do you get Started?

First, you must choose whether to type or handwrite your journals. Typing is faster, and thus allows journalists’ thoughts to almost flow onto the page. Writing by hand is slower, and thus forces journalists to slow down their thoughts. By hand is often considered the better option, and an informal study indicated that handwritten journals are more insightful and further explores thoughts and attitudes. Besides, it can be fun to pick out what will package your positive prose.

Prompts for gratitude journaling can be found throughout the internet: examples include “What are you thankful for; What did someone else do for you?” (Smyth 2018). While the specific prompts do not matter, according to the American Psychological Association, “the most effective entries will include specific details about the person(s), event(s), or thing(s) for which you are grateful.” Additionally, one must make sure that they are journaling consistently with a set period for journaling sessions.

It is important to note that gratitude journaling is not a fix-all for mental health issues. If you or someone you know is in crisis, contact the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or dial 911 in case of emergency. Additional mental health information and resources can be found here.

Written by Dylan Hughes – Writing Center Tutor – Class of 2023

References

Auerbach, R. P., Mortier, P., Bruffaerts, R., Alonso, J., Benjet, C., Cuijpers, P., Demyttenaere, K., Ebert, D. D., Green, J. G., Hasking, P., Murray, E., Nock, M. K., Pinder-Amaker, S., Sampson, N. A., Stein, D. J., Vilagut, G., Zaslavsky, A. M., Kessler, R. C., & WHO WMH-ICS Collaborators. (2018). WHO World Mental Health Surveys International College Student Project: Prevalence and distribution of mental disorders. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 127(7), 623–638. https://doi.org/10.1037/abn0000362

Haertl, Kristine. Haertl, K. H. (2008). Journaling as an Assessment Tool in Mental Health Occupational Therapy. 2008.

Işık, Şerife, and Bengü Ergüner-Tekinalp. “The Effects of Gratitude Journaling on Turkish First Year College Students’ College Adjustment, Life Satisfaction and Positive Affect.” International Journal for the Advancement of Counselling, vol. 39, no. 2, June 2017, pp. 164–75, https://doi.org/10.1007/s10447-017-9289-8.

Smyth, Joshua M et al. “Online Positive Affect Journaling in the Improvement of Mental Distress and Well-Being in General Medical Patients With Elevated Anxiety Symptoms: A Preliminary Randomized Controlled Trial.” JMIR mental health vol. 5,4 e11290. 10 Dec. 2018, doi:10.2196/11290

Weiner, B. (1985). An attributional theory of achievement motivation and emotion. Psychological Review, 92, 548–573.

How To Start Reading Again

Do you tend to fill your shelves up with books that you never actually read? Do you wonder how you read so much more as a kid than you do now? Does the idea of cracking open a huge novel seem incredibly daunting?

Don’t worry! Lots of people feel this way. Adult life is incredibly busy and stressful, and many of us feel like we just don’t have the time or energy to keep up with our favorite hobbies, especially reading. Maybe watching Netflix just seems easier, or maybe you’ve always struggled with reading. Whatever the reason is, we’ve got some great tips that will hopefully give you the motivation you need to open up a book!

Start listening to podcasts and audiobooks

Thanks to TikTok and other social media, our attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. This can make sitting down and focusing on books for long spans of time very difficult. Get back into the habit of focusing on longer narratives by listening to some podcasts or audiobooks while driving or working out. Spotify is a great place to find podcasts of all lengths and topics, and Audible has over 200,000 audiobooks to listen to.

Amazon Prime Day 2020: Save big on an Amazon Audible subscription

Try reading some graphic novels

If you find yourself struggling to focus on written words on a page, graphic novels are a great alternative to classic novels. These books showcase complex stories told through stunning art and are often much easier and quicker to read than regular books. Maus, Heartstopper, and Nimona are great first choices to read.

HEARTSTOPPER — HEARTSTOPPER VOLUME ONE is out today in the US and...

Go with genres you love

Not all reading has to feel academic! If you seem to get bored by most books you read, try choosing books based on your favorite movie genres. If you love horror movies, try some thrilling books by Stephen King or Gillian Flynn. If you love romantic comedies, try some novels by Rainbow Rowell or Casey McQuiston.

Different Types or Genres of Books With Examples | Genre of books, Book  genre labels, Book genres

Make reading feel like a treat

Reading should be fun and shouldn’t feel like a chore! Curl up in your favorite comfy spot with a pet, a snack, and a hot drink, or go out and have a reading adventure somewhere new. You can use reading as an excuse to get out of the house by reading at a coffee shop or at your favorite park. Try using reading as a reward at the end of stressful days, and try to stay consistent when working reading time into your schedule. The more you read, the more you will miss your reading time when you neglect it.

1,301,832 Reading Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock

Natalie Edwards | 2022

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/.

Get Involved with McDaniel’s Writing Community

McDaniel has a plethora of opportunities to get involved with the writing community on the Hill. From poetry to news reporting, there is a spot for every writing-lover on campus.  

Contrast Literary Magazine: Contrast is the spot for everything creative writing. Join them for their weekly meetings to write, create art, and receive feedback from peers. They publish a yearly literary magazine, containing a gorgeous section of poetry, pose, and art. Submissions for the magazine, as well as applications for their editorial board, are open every spring.  

McDaniel Free Press: The Free Press is the College’s only student-run news publication. Covering five major sections (news, features, arts + culture, sports, and commentary), there is a large breadth of coverage possibilities. They put out multiple print issues throughout the school year, included the beloved April fools satirical issue called The Funion, as well as online content in between issues. The Free Press is always welcoming of talented new writers, photographers, question askers, and change seekers, so swing by their office in Hill Hall 111 to get involved!  

Sigma Tau Delta English Honor Society: “STD” is the national English honors society focused on encouraging and promoting the study of literature throughout campus. To be eligible to join, students must have completed three or more literature courses with a B average or higher, are in the top thirty-five percent of their class, and have completed at least three semesters of college. That means you don’t even have to be an English major to be eligible! Sigma Tau Delta inducts new members every spring.  

McDaniel College Writing Center: Of course, this list could not be complete without including our beloved writing center. The writing center is ready to help you at any stage of the writing process, from brainstorming to the finishing touches before you click ‘submit.’ The writing center also hosts a variety of writing workshops throughout the semester, so be sure to check out the events calendar to stay up to date! If you are interested in applying to be a tutor, applications open every fall.  

Ciara | Spring 2022

Five Podcasts to Help You Become a Better Writer

Over the past few years podcasts have become a source of entertainment as well as information for many people. With podcasts being accessible for many, they have allowed people to both broaden and deepen their interest among an assortment of topics, which includes writing. Writing centered podcasts actually have a fairly large listener base and there are many different types of writing based podcasts to listen to. No matter the kind of writing you’re interested in or skill you want to improve, there is probably a podcast out there that addresses it. Check out some of the podcasts below and be prepared to get hooked!

Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing

This podcast takes a look at a wide variety of writing topics with a different subject every week. Topics include grammar, punctuation, style, different types of writing, writing tips for success, and even writing history. Whether you are a seasoned writer or you are just starting to get into writing, this podcast will address topics that will connect you more to your writing and hopefully help to improve it.

Grammar Girl :: Quick and Dirty Tips ™
Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing podcast cover

The Creative Penn Podcast

This podcast is targeted towards those interested in becoming an author. Episodes are centered on being able to make a living out of your writing and how exactly a person can get to that point. They include interviews, and information on how to become and stay inspired as a writer, they look at creativity, publishing options for first time and experienced authors, marketing for writing, and the entrepreneurial side of being an author.

The Creative Penn Podcast: Writing, Publishing, Book Marketing, Making A  Living With Your Writing | The Creative Penn
The Creative Penn Podcast cover

So You Want to be a Writer

This podcast is for anyone that might be interested in the world of writing and publishing. Host Valerie Khoo goes in depth on different writing strategies and techniques to use and attempts to discover when and how popular authors got their big break. In doing this, many guest stars who are well known in writing and publishing are interviewed on the show and their secrets to success and happiness are shared.

So You Want to be a Writer | Podcasts on Audible | Audible.com
So You Want to be a Writer cover

A Way With Words

In this podcast run by National Public Radio (NPR), language is the focus. This program analyzes and traces language throughout history focusing on its connection to family origin and culture. Co-hosts Martha Barnette and Grant Barrett debate language and consider the variation and development of both old and new language. It is full of fun and interesting stories and great information that connects to everyday use of language.

A Way With Words | New Hampshire Public Radio
A Way With Words podcast cover

The Writing Life

Known as “a podcast for anyone who writes,” this show takes on a variety of writing focused topics. Created by the UK’s National Centre for Writing, this podcast seeks to introduce writers of all levels to the journeys of experienced writers as they talk through their early careers, experiences with self-publication, working in publishing, and looking at developing one’s technique. Featured guests include authors like Margaret Atwood, Sara Collins, and many more.

The Writing Life | Podcasts on Audible | Audible.com
The Writing Life podcast cover

These five podcasts are just a small representation of all the writing focused podcasts that are out there. Whether you are looking to become a published author, want to work on the business side of writing and publishing, or just write in your spare time, these podcasts are sure to help provide you with some inspiration and great tips to use in the future.

Micaela | 2022

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/.