The Negative Effects That Your Cell Phone Is Having On You And Your Life

The Negative Effects That Your Cell Phone Is Having On You And Your Life

Put down your phone.
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If you are like me and majority of everyone else with a smart phone, my phone is my security blanket; I don’t leave the house without it and you can find it next to me almost all hours of the day. I have become so dependent and attached to it that I can’t even imagine a world without it. It’s weird to think that not too long ago we lived in a world without smartphones and without the urgent need to text someone all hours of the day, while constantly refreshing social media. I will be the first person to admit it is unfortunate how addicted society has become to our mini laptops. Do not get me wrong, mobile devices are a true blessing and an easy, great way to communicate with people. It is amazing how advanced technology has become; however, the problem is how dependent society has become to it.

Ninety-one percent of American adults and 60 percent of teens own a cell phone. The average person spends 144 minutes a day using his or her phone during a 16-hour period. There is an estimated 6 billion subscriptions worldwide and counting. There are several negative effects of cell phones and there are actually increased stress levels from those who use a mobile device. The constant ringing, vibrating alerts can take a toll on an individual. Researchers have found that high mobile phone use was associated with stress and sleep disturbances for women, and high middle phone use associated with sleep disturbances and symptoms of depression for men. Excessive cell phone use in young adults can be a risk factor for not only our daily communication skills, but also our mental health. Cell phone use can also cause eye problems from the constant staring at the screen. The small screen of a cell phone causes people to squint, sometimes without even realizing it. Squinting causes major strain on your eyes and can trigger major vision problems in the future.

Take a walk down the street and you will more than likely see people in every direction staring at their phones. Whether they are texting, surfing the web, checking social media, uploading photos to Facebook or the handful of other things a smart phone is capable of. Cell phones have created such a diversion in face-to-face conversation. It is a sad reality that our phones have taken over our lives so much that people-skills are actually declining. I fear the younger generation is going to lose its sense of skill when it comes to speaking with someone directly and not just through a cell phone. Individuals have become so connected to their smartphones and so disconnected to the reality around them. Not to mention the amount of deaths and accidents caused by texting while driving. It a text message, a snap story, an Instagram or a tweet really worth your life?

For most people, our cell phone is the first thing we see in the morning and the last thing we see at night. Of course it is not likely for someone to only use their phone when they absolutely need it, but it is important to learn to not be so dependent on it. There are too many negative effects of cell phone usage. I think it would do us all well to take a step back and enjoy the present without our smart phone glued to our hand.

Cover Image Credit: http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/02563/mobiles-pic_2563674b.jpg

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25 Responses To Your Friend Who Doesn't Text Back

Omg thanks for responding so quickly...oh, wait.
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We all have that friend. That friend we love to death, but if we are sure of anything in this world, it’s that they will not respond to your text because they suck at texting. That moment when you see “Read 1:04 p.m.” and you’re like “and???? Helloooooooo!”

These are 25 responses for that dear friend.

1. Lol thanks for tagging me in that FB post, now text me tf back.


2. OMG, wait you met Chris Hemsworth and he’s professing his love to you??!! No? Okay, then you can def text me back.

3. Hey I’m coming to help you since you obviously broke your thumbs and can’t respond.

4. Lolol thanks for responding. I’ll just continue the conversation with myself. That’s cool.

5. Good chat.

6. Yeah I wouldn’t know how to respond either, pizza topping selection is a thought-provoking process. Take your time. Meditate on it.

7. The classic: ^^^^^^^^^


8. I hope you’re writing me the 8th Harry Potter novel.

9. That was a yes or no question. This isn’t difficult. You wouldn’t do well with ‘Sophie’s Choice.’

10. Omg, did you pass out from the excitement of getting a text from me? Totally understandable. Text me when you regain consciousness, love.

11. Omg what a witty and clever response. Nothing. So philosophical.

12. The only excuse I’ll accept is if you’re eating guac and don’t want to get it on your phone. Because avocados are life.

13. I love it when you do that adorable thing when you don’t text me back for hours. So cute.


14. Okay I’ll answer for you. Yes, you’re going out tonight. Glad we had this convo.

15. In the time it has taken you to respond, dinosaurs could have retaken the earth.

16. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA

17. The dramatic but also very valid response: That’s what happens when you don’t respond for 30 minutes. People die.


18. I apologize for asking if you were coming to watch Bachelor, clearly the decision has caused you serious reflection on your priorities. I’m sorry to have caused you this existential crisis.

19. Sorry I annoyed you with my friendship. But like plz respond…

20. Your response time is longer than Ross and Rachel’s entire relationship. 10 seasons. You couldn’t text me back for 10 seasons?!!

21. Wait. You’re responding too fast. I can’t keep up. Hang on. Don’t respond so quickly. Jeez.

22. A subtle but perfectly placed gif. What will you go with? The classic eye roll perhaps or maybe a “you suck.”


23. Did you fall off a cliff? Wait, you don’t exercise. Pause your Netflix and respond b*tch.

24. Omg I WON THE LOTTERY. *responds* Lol now you respond…

25. And my personal favorite and go to, Did you text me and then decide to THROW YOUR PHONE ACROSS THE OCEAN?! Lol swim fast, I need an answer.

Cover Image Credit: http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8289/7759302068_fac2dfd31d_b.jpg

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​A Guide To Writing A Successful Dark Fantasy Story​

This emerging genre fosters great fiction storytelling.

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When I am not writing informative articles, I focus on fiction. Notably, my favorite form of this is Dark Fantasy. This genre is very misunderstood, but when done well, accounts for high-quality writing. Because I find more dark fantasy work to be valuable, I have decided to write a mini guide on how I believe that Dark Fantasy can be constructed.

Before I begin, I want to give credit to a major website that has aided me significantly in writing my own Dark Fantasy. Here is a link to the guide on TV Tropes that helped inspire my own. The one listed there is far more comprehensive than this one, but I offer some of my own input on this guide. It is mine after all. I recommend reading both.

Moving right along...Dark Fantasy is a fantasy genre that is dark. Now, I could stop right there if I was lazy. However, I am not lazy in the slightest. I want to give a comprehensive explanation. Let's begin with defining these two terms: fantasy and dark.

Fantasy is the easier of the two words, as its definition is more concrete. Fantasy stories involve the fantastic. This can include but is not limited to: fairy tails, magic, strange creatures, and usually a medieval Europe or Eastern Asia setting. These are examples but are not limitations. There are modern day fairy tails just as there are science fiction stories in the past.

Dark is a much harder term to define. It can mean many things. The rest of this guide deals with adding some darkness to a fantasy world. I will do my best to bring up examples in writing, but as some of the best cases of implementation of Dark Fantasy are more obscure stories, I might have to use the same sources repeatedly so that everyone reading this is on the same page.

Let's start with the setting. As in all fantasy, world building is vital in Dark Fantasy. The scope can be anything you want: a large city, a multiverse, or anything both in between and beyond those parameters is perfectly fine. I personally tend to eventually end up in Cosmic Worlds, and I'll explain why a little bit later. Remember that while creating this, we are writing Dark Fantasy, so the world needs to be messed up on some fundamental level. Many writers jump right into Dystopian, but this is not a requirement. Some of the most intense Dark Fantasy comes from stories where it is unexpected.

World building also means creating characters. Since this is no longer a heroic fantasy, it does well to create characters with flaws. This is especially vital for the main characters. This setting will not work well if our hero/heroine is the embodiment of pureness. Though I will add that a way to truly make a powerful Dark Fantasy story is to take a character that is pure and corrupt them. Destroying their sense of self and tearing out the flaws that change them for the worse makes for one dark story.

Creating antagonists is extremely important in Dark Fantasy. Without conflict, there is no story. In Dark Fantasy, writers have more freedom with villains. One could try making a visionary villain. One that seeks to make the world a better place, but with morally dubious means. I personally recommend staying away from Disney style evil antagonists. Dark Fantasy exists to change the limitations of the genre and does not function as well with the stereotypical characters. This is not to say they cannot be used, but it makes for a harder story to write. Blurring the line between good and evil can be a great way to showcase how dark a story is capable of becoming.

Don't forget about the monsters! Fighting horrible creatures with uncanny powers is a great way to spice things up. Insanity-inducing auras? A fire that never goes out? The ways to be cruel to characters in endless in Dark Fantasy. Have at it. Sometimes it is OK to have some sadistic pleasure when writing a story. This genre thrives on it.

Before I go further, I need to define one final term that I will be using a lot for the rest of this how-to article. One of the most important tropes and ideas in Dark Fantasy is Deconstruction. Deconstruction is where one takes an idea that is common in a story and then points out how silly the idea is. For an even nastier take on tropes using Deconstruction, one could elect instead to play them more realistically.

For an example that points out the flaw in the trope, let's look at the first Austin Powers Movie. Although it is not Dark Fantasy, parodies done well also do a lot of deconstruction. The scene I want to take a look at is when Doctor Evil chooses to lower Austin into a pity filled with dangerous Sea Bass. Sharks became an endangered species and so cannot be used. The other deconstruction utilized is that Scott Evil, Doctor Evil's son, walks in and points out that it would be far more intelligent to shoot Austin Power right there and then. Doctor Evil elects to play the evil overlord tropes straight by lowering the hero into the tank. If he had followed Scott's advice, it would have been a major deconstructive action. Also, Austin would probably have died.

With that out of the way, let's look at what I feel is one of the most important issues that appear in Dark Fantasy: Racism. If all the races of the world get along, the conflict will be much more simple to solve. However, making it so that the free people hate each other or taking it even further and making the free peoples not so free in the first place allows for a lot of Dark Fantasy as well as deconstruction.

Imagine that the Dwarves and Elves of "Lord of the Rings" are even more violent towards each other than in the books and movies. Well as it turns out, you need not look far. In the Silmarillion, the pre-"Lord of the Rings" Era of Middle Earth, there is rampant racism between Elves, Dwarves, and Men. Indeed, specifically the Children of Hurin part of the Silmarillion is a perfect example of a Dark Fantasy story. I won't spoil the details, but it is certainly worth the read.

Now let's look at Magic. This is a mainstay of fantasy and for good reason. Magic in Dark Fantasy can be whatever you the writer deem it to be. But remember this is Dark Fantasy, so it is assumed that Magic is dangerous or will take a high price to use. It could be something like human sacrifice or blood magic. Perhaps the magic slowly makes the user waste away either physically or mentally? Or maybe there is no positive application for Magic and only a truly evil person would ever consider it.

This comes into play frequently in A Song of Ice and Fire. Indeed, Dark Fantasy has become much more mainstream thanks to Game of Thrones, the show based on the books. Let's look at the Red Priestesses specifically. I won't spoil the show, but their magic requires blood, some sex, and human sacrifice. The results range from uncanny to outright horrific. This to me is how Dark Fantasy works best. In fact, Harry Potter not being dark enough for my tastes is what drove me to write in this genre in the first place.

Next let's look at a related genre: Cosmic Horror. There are some in the writing community that will define Dark Fantasy as Fanatic Elements meet Horror and there are some merits to this idea. Cosmic Horror is one of the darkest genres out there. In these tales, the Gods are very real and even more dangerous. Humanity lives in a delusion of safety that tends to be shattered really fast in this type of story. Cosmic horror stories rarely if ever have a happy ending. More likely, most of the main characters will all end up dead like in Stephen King's The Mist. Or even if the heroes prevail, it is only a temporary setback like in the graphic novel Berserk.

The main attraction of Cosmic Horror is the Eldritch Abomination. Beings so horrible that even looking at them can cause death or even worse. These are the creatures that distort reality and science just by existing. Special care must be taken when using such being in a story, but when done correctly, there are few ways to get darker than having such a creature exist in the setting (or outside it for some extra mind screw as well)

Speaking of Berserk, this story is a great example of a fusion of Cosmic Horror and Dark Fantasy. There is a lot of reasons why the two overlap and one of the main among them is the fact that at certain points, the two genres are hard to separate from each other. Guts is the anti-hero you expect in the story with Casca as the tragic secondary protagonist. Former Hero Griffith, the Godhand, and the Apostles are the villains and horrible monsters. The first two groups are literal Gods with near infinite power which creates a Cosmic Horror Story, the third group is their servants. Called Angels in setting, the Apostles would be Demons in basically any other story. But of course, Evil Gods are a mainstay of Dark Fantasy.

Berserk also has racism as a major proponent as there are many races and ethnicity groups at each other's throats. The Godhand are far from the only villains. They just happen to be at the top of the food chain. There are evil churches and dangerous empires. And most importantly, Guts himself is suffering corruption thanks to all sorts of circumstances. If he is not careful, he might end up becoming an Apostle himself. Oh right, did I forget the part that the Demons and Godhand used to be humans at one point?

Everything I outlined in the paragraph above is important to consider with Dark Fantasy. I will list them up as a sum up to ensure that I have been clear.

Religions of Evil
Flawed and Tragic Main Characters
Deadly Gods that one does not wish to attract the attention of
Monsters that used to be regular people
Racism
Heroes who become Villains

Now before I wrap things up, I want to warn of a few pitfalls that can occur as a result of writing Dark Fantasy. First and foremost, beware of writing a story that the readers will not be able to read. Characters need to be flawed, but if they are unlikable, then the readers won't care and ultimately will give up on the story. Second, do not insert horrific scenes simply for shock value. Dark Fantasy is not Torture Porn. When horrible tragedy strikes characters, it needs to drive the plot, not exist simply to surprise the reader.

Last, and most importantly, do not get so bogged down in your own story that you become depressed or worse. Mental health matters. There is a reason that there is more than one case of a writer coming up with a Dark Fantasy Story because of mental illness causing as a serious shift in the stories goal. Neon Genesis Evangelion is one of the most infamous examples of this, but it is not the only one. Stay safe while writing!

Keep the above things in mind and you will do fine. At the bottom I will include a list of what I feel are great examples of Dark Fantasy to help with more research:

Berserk
Dragon Age
The Children of Hurin
Warhammer
The Cthulhu Mythos
Dark Souls
Cast a Deadly Spell
Maleficent
The Witcher
Warcraft

Cover Image Credit:

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