First blost! I just think "blost" sounds so funny. Blog + post = blost. Best math I've ever done.
For my first post, it seems only fair that I fill you in. So here is a bit about who I am, and how this whole thing got started. Thank you for taking the time to get to know me! I think I'll convince you to stick around.
I recently graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder, where I really found writing as an outlet for... everything.
I started out as a theater major, coming off of a high school hot streak of leads in a handful of musicals. Theater had long been the plan. The one that many wise people try to tell you is fluid, always changing, and never concrete. The kind of plan that I refused to see any other way but just that. After auditioning for a number of conservatories, I came upon CU Boulder - the infamous party school I never thought I would attend. It was not part of the plan, not even a little bit.
Freshman year I clung true to only one part of my imagined college experience as a theater major, believing, like everyone else in the room, that I was the star among them. But fairly quickly, that changed too. My last year of high school I took this amazing class called "Truth & Fiction." It was all about the Beat Generation, story telling, free thinking. It's due to that teacher that I picked up a minor in Creative Writing. By the end of my first year in college - the experimental year that had previously been stone - my minor became my major, and my playbook closed.
The Women & Gender Studies thing came out of a failed attempt at Greek life, another compromised promise I had made myself. The Greek system is a funky thing. It didn't end up being a place for me, but I do write a lot about it and am continuously intrigued by it. The combination of my major and minor is what led me to Google, the search engine that stared back at me wondering what move to make next. I searched the interwebs for a writing opportunity on campus, and came across the CUIndependent, the university's online news source.
My first few months at the CUI I wrote college 101 type stuff. I remember it took something like three weeks for my first article (regarding, not kidding, changing the toilet paper) to even be posted. In the application it asked what section I might like to write for, and I immediately selected "opinion." Previously I had only written current event articles for my high school paper, outside of the regular class assignments. In college I quickly realized that creative writing doesn't put up the boundaries that classic school subjects demand. It doesn't even ask for what journalism does! The lack of structure that my degree asked of me really allowed that I cultivate my own voice alongside my perspective.
In January of my sophomore year I hit an incredible turning point. I didn't want to write about college and all the things going on in my life and around me from the point of view of any college student - I wanted to write like a feminist.
Feminism is a huge part of who I am and how I imagine myself. It has largely become the driving force of my personality and passion, and a defining factor of who I am. It sounds intense, I know. But that's the thing about feminism - and all it's misconceptions - not everyone seems to know how far you can take it to make it your own.
The head of the opinion section asked the writers to come up with a column name. Something consistent that we could contribute to and hopefully build. The combining forces of my degree were almost too perfect. Feminism + writing and then there I was, action packed with opinion. And so was born "Girl on Girl," my very own feminist opinion column. I really had to finagle my way into calling it that, and that certainly wasn't my last battle - especially when it came to titling my articles.
I have a few really incredible highlights from college, but Girl on Girl is really up there in the number ones. This column was so much more than that for me - it was my whole process into really becoming myself. It was this insane outlet where I got to realize and share my thoughts, and then they went through this whole editing chain where I was receiving amazing feedback and alternative perspectives that only propelled my own ideas forward. I was surrounded by invigorated writers that loved to argue even their bleakest thoughts. I felt welcomed, encouraged, and respected at the CUIndependent more than any other niche I had sought out at CU Boulder. And you know what, writers are super cool.
Girl on Girl became a huge part of my life. It was the perfect way for me to explore feminism and writing, better understand myself, and make any kind of sense of complicated, hurtful, and delicate events from cat-calls to the election to my vagina. You read that right. And I'm not even going to link it, you'll just have to go poking around the site for that one.
College ending meant Girl on Girl ending too. And then I thought, maybe I have something to blog about now. The thing my mom had been urging me to create for years! But until having something regular that I could rely on to share my thoughts, I didn't really understand the whole thing. As it turns out, people kind of like reading my stuff. And that's a really incredible feeling. At the end of my senior year, Girl on Girl received an award from the Society of Professional Journalists for opinion and commentary. How about that for a capstone project.
The column is over, but you bet I have plenty more to say. So, mom, here is the long discussed and awaited blog. Thank you for always pushing me to be my best - to you and dad and my perfect sisters, our family, and all of our friends who have offered me nothing but support. For reading my old articles and looking forward to the new. I love you all so much!
Oh, and the "dreampinkus" thing. That's also a good story, and it's shorter than the one I just told.
So if you're not familiar with the band Dream Street I highly recommend you get acquainted, I remain a fan. When I was making my first email address I wanted to be "dreamstreet." Well, it was already taken. But Yahoo! suggested "dreampinkus" because of my last name. At the time it really felt like second place, but the name has somehow stuck on me. It's been a stage name for some of the music work I've done, an Instagram handle, the works. And now, a blog!
Okay, first blost is done. How did I do? I would love to hear your thoughts! Comment below, send me a message, and scroll down to subscribe. Thank you so much for visiting my site! Good stuff, eh?
x Dani Pinkus