I'll Be Watching You

I'll Be Watching You

How to tell if you've encountered a writer.

Over the many years my husband and I have been married, he has learned to live with my many quirks that have come from being a writer. There is a certain creed of people that are writers and though we vary greatly in personality, walks of life, beliefs, writing style and preferred genre, there are some things we may have in common. It seems that with so great a span of differences that we should be well camouflaged in the general populace. That is true. But be assured, we are there among you. We travel on the train with you. We eat in the same restaurants. We frequent the same coffee shops. How can you tell if someone is a writer? At the risk of being black-balled by my fellow scribblers, I will share some of our little idiosyncrasies.

One aspect of my love for penning words is, well, quite simply, my love for pens and journals. Some girls are drawn to bling, some to shoes, some to purses. Writers drool over leather bound journals and window shop for the smoothest writing pens available. Some pens will fill us with joy, and others will have ink that blots strangely and push us over the edge. Even if the writer does most of their writing on a computer or laptop, there will always be a draw to a journal and pen.

Speaking of journals, many writers keep a journal. Not a “diary”, mind you. What’s the difference? I’m glad you asked. A diary is frothy, lighthearted, immature scribblings of how cute Johnny is, or what Miranda said to Carley in the hallway at school, and did you see what Ashley was wearing? A journal is much more serious. Deeper thoughts and emotions, compelling poetry, short stories, even essays are written. Journal writing is done religiously whereas diary writing is whimsical. My children know that there are three things in which they never interrupt me. One: the first cup of coffee. Unless the house is on fire, you just don’t bother Mom until that first holy cup of coffee is integrated into her system. Two: writing in my journal. Don’t even think about it. Three: quilting while in the “zone”. It isn’t so much that this one is a “no-no”, but more of a friendly warning. Usually when I’m quilting on the machine I have my earbuds in and am on a listening binge of the The Piano Guys. Simply put, I just won’t notice you unless you blow an air horn in my face or stand on your head and gargle peanut butter.

Another way to identify a writer is simple: We tend to disappear during the month of November. We just POOF… disappear. We don’t answer calls. We don’t return emails. We don’t go for our hair appointments. The reason for this falling off the face off the Earth act is because November is National Novel Writing Month. My eight-year old knows this. Last October he asked one day what the date was. I told him it was the 31st. He looked me dead in the eye and said, as he was heading off to bed, “Good night. See you December first.” You can tell any writer who participates in the NaNoWriMo challenge because their grocery bill goes up a few days before November from purchasing copious amounts of chocolate and caffeinated drinks.

My husband has learned to take in stride my propensity for scribbling in a small notebook at odd times. Sometimes it is after a dream. I may wake up at 3 a.m. with an idea in my head and write it down. Sometimes it is during a date. We’ll be chatting away and I’ll whip out my trusty pen and notebook and start scribbling. This has happened an embarrassing amount of times. Sometimes writers like to sit by themselves, sipping coffee. We may have a news paper or magazine or book in front of us, but don’t be fooled. We are watching you. We love to see how people behave and note the little details of individuals. What little unique details are part of their gestures? Their attire? Their physical appearance? We learn how to make our characters more believable by watching others in real life and paying attention. We may also eavesdrop. We love to hear clever bantering, intelligent conversation, lighthearted dialogue. Anything we can remember in real life we can learn from and make our characters more believable and have more depth. And if we don’t think we can remember, a small recorder may be used. I can neither confirm nor deny the use of such a device personally. Ahem.

If you suspect someone is a writer and you are engaged in conversation, watch how they treat you. They will make eye contact, and appear to be really listening to all you have to say. At the risk of offending any readers’ sensibilities, let me assure you that it isn’t your brilliant personality that has the writer enraptured with your every word. They are doing a close-up study of character and dialogue, similar to what was mentioned above. Only this time, instead of sitting obscurely at a table, blending into the crowd, they have made a bold move to obtain a much more up-close study of a personality: yours. Try not to be offended, but flattered.

Sometimes the opposite happens, as my husband can attest. We’ll be talking and while he is blathering on about the latest Syracuse loss, I’ll drift off into some sort of plot twist that I am trying to work out. This is definitely one of the hazards to being a writer. We play a mental “what if” game with ourselves all the time, and that leads to rabbit trails of thought that sometimes make it seem like we are totally ignoring you. Don’t worry. We are. Sorry about that.

Some signs are much more apparent than others. We may at odd times say something like: “I have to write about that!” That clears up any misunderstanding, especially if it follows the above episode of wearing a blank look and ignoring whomever is talking to us. Again, don't be offended. It just means that something you said jogged our imagination and inspired us. Again, try to be flattered.

Someone may be a writer if you notice they use language. No, I don’t mean cussing. I mean language, as in literally. We may use words that you think are peculiar. I have a friend that says she never heard the word “wonky” before she met me. Apparently, I use it a lot, and whenever she hears it now she thinks of me. I would like to think it is because of the word, not the attribute. My friend pleaded the fifth when asked to clarify.

Writers can get cranky if they go too long without creating. You have to understand that to a natural born writer, it is literally in our blood. Writing is like a drug. Our syringe is a pen, and the ink is the substance that helps us to create. There is something about scribbling words and stringing them together like a necklace to make sentences. We firmly believe that if a picture is worth a thousand words, then a word is worth a thousand pictures. We tinker with verbs. We audition nouns. We argue about the Oxford comma. We take Scrabble very seriously.

I hope this clears up how you view the writer in your life whether it be a spouse, friend, or the stranger sitting at the table nearby. Remember that we mean no harm, but love our craft and are trying to improve our skills. We may seem like we are spying on you, ignoring you, or stalking you, but in reality we are just trying to better our craft so we can entertain you. We have our idiosyncrasies, our quirks and our moments of crankiness. Just remember to be nice. Because if you make us mad we can always put you in a story and kill you off.

Cover Image Credit: Jeff Sheldon

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10 Reasons Why 'Resident Evil 4' Is A Complete Classic

The bromance between Leon and Luis.

Anyone that knows me knows that "Resident Evil 4" is my favorite video game of all time. I remember being 12 years old watching my older brother play the game, and later on, picking up the controller to experience it for myself.

And I have been in love ever since.

Aside from its well deserved critical acclaim, the amazing voice acting and its unique storyline, here are a few reasons why "Resident Evil 4" holds such a dear place in my heart.

1. The bromance between Leon and Luis between then until "death do us part.

Luis Sera is the true definition of "deserved better." He makes his first and only appearance in the Resident Evil series as he befriends Leon and manages to help him by getting a growth suppressant for the Las Plagas parasite.

I was indeed sad to see him go, but something in me denies that he's dead and that maybe one day he'll reappear in a future game. Pffft. Let me dream.

2. Leon's Character Development

In "Resident Evil 4," we notice a huge growth in Leon. Aside from transitioning from a small town police officer to a government agent, we notice a huge improvement in his fighting skills.

Also, while he still manages to carry his sense of justice and duty, he loses the whole "I'm the boss and everyone should listen to me" attitude that he had in "Resident Evil 2." Here, we see him as more mature and grounded.

3. The Chainsaw Guy (Dr. Salvador)

The first time I ever played this game, Dr. Salvador sneak attacked me (in other words, decapitated me with his chainsaw) and I was completely mortified. Of course, all you gotta do is hear the rev of his chainsaw to know he's ready for some decapitation action. It's moments like that where you thank God for the shotgun.

4. Those creepy Regenerators that scared the bejesus out of all of us.

Its weird breathing noises, eerie appearance and the fact that it freakin' regenerates are the things that made this character iconic.

5. The reunion between Leon Kennedy and Ada Wong

Leon and Ada kinda had a thing in "Resident Evil 2." While it is near impossible for them to actually be together because of their jobs, it was nice to see them reunite for just a little while.

6. The Merchant

Ah, yes. The friendly Ganado that you sell items to and buy weapons from. Greeting you with a warm "Got some good things on sale, stranger!" it would be hard for one to forget his voice and other famous sayings such as "Wadd'ya buyin'?"

7. It is the first game in the series to have a third-person, over the shoulder view.

This is honestly pretty handy compared to the awkward fixed camera angles in the earlier games. Also, the controls run much, much smoother.

8. It has greatly improved graphics compared to the last three games.

Along with better camera angles and smoother controls, there's a huge update in the graphics. The blood looks more realistic instead of some cheesy bright-red color. Also, the scenery of the castles and cathedrals are just beautiful.

9. It's the first of the series to mix action with survival horror.

Resident Evil 1, 2 and 3 mainly focused on the suspense and horror elements. While "Resident Evil 4" comes in the picture with more action-related elements while still having the themes of survival horror.

10. The quick time events.

While quick time events are quite noticeable in gameplay, they can throw you off during a cutscene for first-time players of the game. Don't let Jack Krauser's smooth talk distract you.

Cover Image Credit: Capcom/YouTube

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Bobby Tarantino Is Back On Logic's New Mixtape

Here's everything you need to know about "Bobby Tarantino II."

On the same night that Lil Yachty dropped “Lil Boat 2,” Logic gave us “Bobby Tarantino II” because he must have known how bad Yachty’s work was going to be.

We’ve already heard the first “Bobby Tarantino” mixtape, and most of us thought it was fire, but what about its sequel? Well, that’s exactly what I am here for. Here’s everything you need to know about “Bobby Tarantino II.”

"Grandpa’s Space Ship"

This was strictly an intro to the mixtape so technically, “Overnight” is the first song on “Bobby Tarantino II.” This introduction, however, was much different than his others because it featured dialogue from Rick and Morty.

The conversation between the two popular characters is about Logic, himself, and each character represents the two different sides of rap fans and, more specifically, Logic’s fans. When trying to decide which project to play by Logic, they settle in the middle with “that Bobby Tarantino.”


This was a song that was already released publicly as a single, and while I enjoyed it, I wasn’t completely sold on it. That all changed the moment I heard how Logic incorporated it into this project so I definitely suggest listening to it directly after the “Grandpa’s Space Ship” introduction.


Contra is all about Logic’s recent success in the mainstream scene. With his previous projects, Logic was getting kind of big but far from where he is now after the release of his album, “Everybody.”

The beat goes hard, and Logic absolutely bleeds all over the record as he gives real lyrics to his audience instead of rapping about doing drugs and sleeping with women the way almost every other rapper does.

"BoomTrap Protocol"

The very beginning of this song may remind you of elevator music, but just wait a few more seconds until Logic comes on the beat and gives you a million reasons to put the song on repeat. BoomTrap Protocol is such a great song to chill and kick it to so I definitely suggest you do just that. Logic achieves a sound here that I’m not sure he’s ever done before – or, at the very least, done this well – and it certainly worked well for him.


In an article I wrote the previous week, I mentioned the low-scale beef happening between Logic and Joyner Lucas. Lucas has been taking shots at Logic since they collabed on Tech N9ne’s “Siracha” track, and Logic has hardly spoken a word about it.

On “Yuck,” however, Logic did everything but drop Joyner’s name as he spit bars on flows and completely destroyed Lucas with ease. If Lucas chooses to respond, he’ll have to be a little more careful with what he says because Logic seems to be growing impatient with Joyner’s attempts to use Logic for more views.

"Indica Badu - Wiz Khalifa"

This was a song that I never thought I would have had heard before for two reasons: 1. I never thought I’d hear Logic and Wiz Khalifa on the same track and 2. I could never see Logic making a song that was clearly about weed.

Clearly, I was wrong, and I couldn’t be happier about it because this song was awesome from beginning to end. Khalifa rapped really well and so did Logic. His flows were impressive on this track and on the entire mixtape, as a whole.


Logic gave us a mix of sounds on this four-minute-long song. The first minute and a half are slower and give us more of a chill vibe, but then the beat drops and Logic gives us some really hard rap with bars that can’t be beaten.

"Warm It Up" - Young Sinatra

The first thing I had to say about this song is: “My god, that beat.” Logic shows us another reason why he’s one of the best in today’s rap game with this track. He can perform any style: old, new, slow, fast or whatever else you throw his way. He’s so versatile and always has been, but songs like this–and this mixtape, in general–make it clear that Logic is still every bit as good as we all thought when he first started to blow up.

"Wizard of Oz"

Another good beat, which you can say for practically every song on “Bobby Tarantino II,” but I really like how the beat came into the song. Logic immediately comes at you with fast flows but changes the tempo up in a really beautiful way.

Another thing I noticed here was this line, “increase the autotune so y’all can feel the pain,” which I thought was really cool because on the song “Under Pressure” on Logic’s first studio album, “Under Pressure," Logic uses the line, “And bitch I’m still the same, dash of autotune so y’all can feel the pain.”

Technically, Logic recycled his own bar, which is usually frowned upon in rap music, but since I have never heard this bar from anyone else before, I’ll give him a pass on it.

"State of Emergency" - 2 Chainz

The beat goes so hard on this track featuring 2 Chainz, who gives a very hot verse to “Bobby Tarantino.” The two artists collaborated really well here to create one hell of a song. I would give a specific recommendation to give this song a listen, but I would honestly be doing that for every single song on the mixtape so I suggest just listening to the whole thing because it is just that good.

"Wassup" - Big Sean

This isn’t the first time Logic and Big Sean have teamed up, and it probably won’t be the last, either. I’m not the biggest fan of Big Sean because I feel like his work doesn’t live up to his potential, but I really liked him on Wassup. The beat was refreshing and so were Sean’s bars. There was a sample used in the beat from Big Sean’s song, “Mercy.”

Logic was also terrific in this song, but he was great throughout all of “Bobby Tarantino II” so it’s nothing out of the ordinary by now. His bars were strong and so were his flows – seriously, his bars had me holding my hand to my head in disbelief that I even heard what just came through my earbuds.

"Everyday" - Marshmello

Everyday is probably more of a mainstream hit than a gem on a project, but either way, it’s a great song and it’s fun to listen to. On the track featuring music from Marshmello, Logic talks about his work ethic and how it’s resulted in his success. For many people who may have come from nothing and are either beginning to turn their life around or have already done so, this song may possibly feel like an anthem to you.

"44 More"

Just like “Bobby Tarantino II” is a sequel, so is "44 More." On the first “Bobby Tarantino” mixtape, Logic went hard on a track called "44 Bars." On "44 More," Logic gives us exactly 44 bars on the beat and every single one of them is worth listening to. Some lines, here and there, definitely make me think he’s taken multiple shots at Joyner Lucas (not counting the ones included on Yuck because those are a lot more obvious).

Final score: 8.8/10

Every single song on this “Bobby Tarantino II” can be argued as the best song on the mixtape because Logic spits straight heat with his unique combination of bars, flows and sounds. If there is one album you are going to listen to all week, I highly recommend choosing “Bobby Tarantino II” for all of your musical needs.

Cover Image Credit: Visionary Music Group / YouTube

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