Blog Email: adrianvstheworld@gmail.com

Hello! My name is Adrian Manuel. I studied English and Creative Writing at Northern Arizona University (my parents are still recovering). I am currently working as a freelance writer and I manage this blog in between projects (again, still recovering).

Adrian Vs. The World started in college – that time of joyous possibility coupled with periods of relentless self-doubt. College has a way of magnifying our anxieties. I had peers who joked whether I was gonna spend the rest of my largely unemployed life writing sonnets (I’ve written a few). I had roommates who compared the thickness of their math and science textbooks to the literature I was required to read (the intellectual equivalent of a dick-measuring competition). I had relatives pressing me about what I could possibly do with an English education. Even a doctor of mine (whom I sought for back pain brought on by anxiety) asked what I was studying and when I said English, he looked up, brows furrowed, and asked how’s that working out?

Creative Arts majors know exactly what I’m talking about, being knocked on and talked down to. This constant feeling like you’re against the world. As if our insecurities don’t provide enough resistance as it is. Uncertainty comes in the form of smiles and flimsy advice from people who aren’t in it the same as you. Your so-called “support” system telling you to pursue this as a hobby and to do something practical. People tell you how hard it is to be a creative yet no one seems to understand how hard it is for us not to be.

It’s always been a fight to validate and express myself. It feels that way now and I know that won’t change. I suppose that’s why this desk and this chair is starting to feel like home. Despite all odds, I write. Knowing I shouldn’t, being told I couldn’t, and I write. It’s me versus the world.


12 thoughts on “About

  1. Exactly this. Though it’s taken me most of my adult life to put it into words resembling these, to define what it is I’m writing for. I went through my teenage years burying myself in anorexia because I believed, since there were so many other writers (better ones) out there, it seemed pointless to even try – and I couldn’t figure out what else I could possibly be, since from the time I learned to write in primary school, creative fiction/poetry was my *gift.*

    But as you so beautifully put it, everyone has their own inflections and nuances to put into writing. No two styles will ever be the same, and no writer should ever deny the world their style, or the inside of their mind.

  2. You do have an art skills in writing Adrian! Wish I could also have the interest to writes things up and be an observer of this world and write things up to share! Keep up the good work! Best of Luck!

    1. This is so surreal! I had just finished reading your Time’s Up post and it inspired me tremendously! It’s so cruel to me how hard this world is on dreamers. You’d think with the success stories of movies that people would at least encourage our starry-eyed dreams, but the opposite happens. They tell you no. They tell you to do something else. So the no we shout back at them feels defiant, and the successes we attain on our own, all the more triumphant.

      I appreciate you taking the time to visit. After reading your story, you’ve gained a follower in me. Us creatives gotta stick together!

      1. You’ve got a follower in me too! I love your style of writing 😉

        And you’re right – the world is extremely hard on us dreamers… and despite what I wrote and all the negative stuff about the film industry, it’s still the one industry that’s most inspiring, full of dreamers! which is what I love about it and why I feel so connected. Only – it’s usually not the people in power…. 😉

  3. *Long comment below! Apologies in advance!*
    I feel the exact same way with my degree. I’ve received my B.A. in Hawaiian Language, and when I first began learning Hawaiian while in high school, my parents were extremely against the idea. They had wanted me to learn Japanese in order to go into the tourism industry, but I was dead set against going into tourism. Attending a school for Native Hawaiian students and learning about my history and culture, it just felt right in my gut to learn the language of my ancestors and to continue to pursue that in college in order to eventually become a teacher. My parents kind of softened up after a while, but I still receive questions from others about what I can do with my degree, so I definitely understand the pain and irritation. I’m glad you continue to write even if you feel it’s you against the world! There’s an ʻōlelo noʻeau (wise Hawaiian proverb) that says, “Kūlia i ka nuʻu,” or “Strive to meet the summits.” No matter how tough the journey may be, continue to strive for the best & know that amazing things will happen!

    1. This was so beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing! As a Filipino, I’ve been constantly pressured to go into the medical field or take up a hotel job smh. It’s such a shame how we’re told from a young age to follow our dreams, then tragically as we get older our own support system tries to micro-manage that. That in itself is a hard lesson, that you can only count on yourself. I don’t mean that in a cynical way either. No one else will accomplish our dreams for us. We gotta do this on our own. It means going against the grain. It may even mean pissing off a few people. It’s not easy, but I rather enjoy that. I’m glad you followed your gut. Don’t listen to other people, that’s the advice I often give. Because why listen to someone who’s not in it the same as you? A lot can be accomplished if we just listen to ourselves. Who knows, someday people might listen to what we have to say!

      Again, thank you for sharing. Apologies for the late reply. I’m not on here as much as I should be 😅

  4. I got a minor in English in college and never told my parents about it! (I was required to major in business.) now 28 years after graduating I am finally writing. It took my son to inspire me to do it. Wish I had started sooner!

  5. Thanks for taking the time to look at my blog and liking my post. Your encouragement is a big boost for amateurs like me. Hope to create better posts and receive more feedback in the future.

    It takes a lot of courage to pursue a career in the creative arts. I know because I chose an engineering career instead of pursuing my dreams as a writer.

    Best wishes.

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