Teenage Wasteland – Teens Can Write, Too! November 2014 Blog Chain

tcwt-3[1]This month’s TCWT prompt is:

“Use pictures and individual words to show what, to you, is the essence of being a teenager. “

This prompt is a little trickier than normal. Thankfully, John (one of TCWT’s administrators) provided a little more information:

“By that, I mean for you to talk about what feelings and emotions and ideas you feel represent your teen experience. Basically, I want to know what growing up means to you. As for ‘individual words,’ I mean a list of words that you feel is integral to your teen experience. Hopefully it’ll get us to take a hard look at ourselves and our teen experiences, and figure out what, to us, are that experience’s most important characteristics.”

Hmmm. Well, honestly, I misremembered this prompt and thought it was about PHRASES. So while I’m definitely going to list some individual words, I’m also going to list short phrases.

And I’m going to use photos and GIFs from stories, because… because. Because I am a massive nerd and I’d rather use something funny rather than fancy pictures.

  • Confused
  • College acceptance letters
  • Being extremely fond of social media
  • Waking up late
  • Embarrassment
  • You see little kids and wonder if you were ever that annoying
  • You see adults and want to be cool like them
  • You see other adults and hope you never end up like them
Making bad decisions and then wanting to smack yourself in the face

Making bad decisions and then wanting to smack yourself in the face

  • You can’t wait for the future
  • You’re worried about the future
  • You want to ask your parents for advice
  • But you also enjoy annoying them
  • Sleepy
  • Procrastination
  • Being too shy to talk to most (all?) of your crushes
  • Developing crushes on totally unattainable people
Becoming frustrated with your schoolwork

Becoming frustrated with your schoolwork

  • Having a few really, really close friends
  • Having Internet friends
  • Being excited when your Internet friends finally get online each day because time zones are soooooo annoying
  • Breaking up with your friends
  • Discovering that you now have little or nothing in common with some of your old friends and that you’ve slowly begun to drift apart
  • Reading YA
  • “Don’t want to see another generation drop / I’d rather be a comma than a full stop” – Coldplay, “Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall
  • Realizing that things you used to like just don’t interest you any more
  • Getting excited when you think about living on your own someday, but also worrying that you’ll completely fail at it because A) you haven’t yet learned how to do your own laundry and B) you don’t know how to make anything other than sandwiches and pancakes, so you’ll probably be living off of those in a few short years
Current mood: ???????????

Current mood: ???????????

  • Sarcasm
  • Sometimes you’re really concerned with your appearance, but sometimes you rock the hoodie-wearing, haven’t-brushed-my-hair-yet-today look… for several days in a row
  • Bizarre inside jokes that only you and your friends understand
  • Listening to a song over and over and over again because it perfectly captures your current mood
  • Hearing old people complain about your generation
  • Hearing old people talk about how smart your generation is and how it can solve all the world’s problems
  • Being busy
Taking selfies with your friends

Taking selfies with your friends

  • Getting your first job, which is probably sucky and boring and pays the minimum wage – but hey, it’s a job, and it allows you to buy more books and music and fandom-y shirts
  • Enthusiasm
  • Apathy
  • Using a lot of emoticons
  • Creativity
  • You spend a lot of time pondering life, the universe, and everything
  • “I feel something so right / By doing the wrong thing / And I feel something so wrong / By doing the right thing” – OneRepublic, “Counting Stars
Wanting to be a little kid again, sometimes

Wanting to be a little kid again, sometimes

  • Changing your mind a lot
  • Identifying really, really strongly with fictional characters
  • More freedom
  • Spending a lot of time alone in your room
  • Comparing your adolescence to those described in stories and feeling weird because you’re not popular/a vampire/a student at a school of magic/in a love triangle/all of the above
  • Exhilarating and intimidating all at once

What does being a teenager mean to you? Can you relate to any of my experiences?

P.S. I will give virtual hugs and cookies to anyone who understands the reference in the title of this post! Hint: It’s from a song. Let’s see if anyone has similar tastes in music…

Want to follow our blog chain? Here are the participating parties, day by day:

5th – http://vergeofexisting.wordpress.com/

6th – http://irisbloomsblog.wordpress.com/

7th – https://musingsfromnevillesnavel.wordpress.com/

8th – http://freeasagirlwithwings.wordpress.com/

9th – http://clockworkdesires.wordpress.com/

10th – http://www.pamelanicolewrites.com/

11th – http://randommorbidinsanity.blogspot.com/

12th – http://www.kirabudge.weebly.com/my-blog

13th – http://semilegacy.blogspot.com/

14th – http://oliviarivers.wordpress.com/

15th – http://miriamjoywrites.com/

16th – http://unikkelyfe.wordpress.com/

17th – http://maralaurey.wordpress.com/

18th – http://quirkyteenwriter.wordpress.com/

19th – http://butterfliesoftheimagination.wordpress.com/

20th – http://www.juliathewritergirl.com/

21st – http://whileishouldbedoingprecal.weebly.com/

22nd – http://paperdaydreams.com/

23rd – http://theedfiles.blogspot.com/

24th – http://teenscanwritetoo.wordpress.com/ (We’ll announce the topic for December’s chain!)

About nevillegirl

Elizabeth. University of Iowa class of 2019. Triple majoring in English & Creative Writing, Journalism, and Gender, Women's, & Sexuality Studies. Twenty-one-year-old daydreamer, introvert, voracious reader, aspiring writer, and lesbian. Passionate about feminism, mental health, comic books, and cats.
This entry was posted in Books and Reading!, Nevillegirl's Adventures!, Non-Neville Posts, Teens Can Write Too!, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

29 Responses to Teenage Wasteland – Teens Can Write, Too! November 2014 Blog Chain

  1. Mom says:

    I DO know the reference to the title of your post, but only because your father used to play it ALL.THE.TIME. So, I’ll let someone else guess.

    Anyway, I totally agree with “wanting to be a little kid again, sometimes,.” even though I’m a ‘few’ years older than a teenager…..

  2. Julia says:

    I got the title reference! Baba O’Riley (also known as Teenage Wasteland) by The Who.

  3. matttblack42 says:

    Teenage Wasteland is a really great song written by… hmm, I can’t quite remember the name of who wrote it. I’m sure it’ll come to me.

  4. Artgirl says:

    And yeah, the whole breaking up with friends thing…oof. I broke up with my best friend of twelve years this summer and that was hard. I feel you.
    Also really appreciated Gandalf hitting Denathor. I need that in my life.
    And in the words of Captain America: I understood that reference!

    • nevillegirl says:

      I STOLE IT

      I’ve never broken up with anyone who I’ve known for a long long time (…unless five years counts as long), but I’ve grown apart from some girls who I’ve been friends with since, like, forever. And it sucks. 😦 But we just didn’t have much in common anymore and I’ll find new friends…

      I actually think Denethor isn’t as bad as he’s portrayed in the movies (I wrote a whole essay about it once – but it’s never seen the light of day xD), but even I appreciate that whack-a-steward scene. 😀
      Regarding Captain America’s words: And I understood THAT reference!

  5. Oh my gosh I love this post to pieces ❤ I don't know how you did it, but you perfectly summed up what it's like to be a teenager. I can relate sooo well to this!!

  6. Cait says:

    I love Counting Stars. 🙂
    Ohhhh, but this post is amazing. I LOVE IT. I think you summed up basically exactly what it’s like to be a teenager. (And I still totally feel like a teen even though I’m not anymore. *cries a little* Some of these things just stay with you forever, I think.) I love your gifs! A+ USE OF GIFS I TELL YOU.

    • nevillegirl says:

      As do I. 🙂

      Thank you! I wasn’t sure if I explained myself well, so I’m so glad that people seem to like this post!


  7. THOSE ARE BEAUTIFUL GIFS ❤ I didn't have time to read the whole post (*cries forever* I AM COMING BACK FOR YOU) because this is technically another 30 second break from schoolwork, but those GIFs. Just. Perfect. 😀

    And yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. To the 12 and Missy selfie pic. JUST YES. ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

    (Oh, and I finally started reading Since You've Been Gone! Looking pretty good so far. 😀 Thanks for the book rec. 🙂 )

  8. Miriam Joy says:

    When I was fifteen or so I spent a lot of time comparing my life with YA fiction… not because I wasn’t living up to what books made me expect but because I *was* stuck in a love triangle and it was THE WORST THING EVER and screwed up loads of my friendships. So trust me, if you’ve safely avoided that, you’re lucky for it.

    I could identify with some, but not all of these. I don’t have a drivers license, for example, although you can get them from seventeen here – my health made learning to drive a terrifying and painful experience and I didn’t continue with it.

    Of course, I’d probably say I had a somewhat unconventional adolescence and didn’t experience things quite like other teenagers, but that’s probably a very hipsterish thing to say. My teenage years have been characterised by a series of crises that have triggered change rather than by lots of small events – or at least, that’s how they seem with hindsight.

    • nevillegirl says:

      Oh, ugh, that sounds uncomfortable. I’m glad I’ve never been in a love triangle…

      Really, only seventeen? In some states we can get a learner’s driving permit at 14…

      Nah, I think everyone’s is a bit different, so your statement doesn’t strike me as super-hipsterish or anything. I think that in some ways I’ve had a very typical adolescence, but there are definitely a few unconventional aspects. I mean, most teens aren’t homeschooled, and that’s really affected my life. And not everyone is LGBTQ+, either, so there’s that. 🙂

      • Miriam Joy says:

        I believe you can learn to drive off-road from a younger age, eg if you live in a very rural area you could learn to drive around your farm or whatever, but don’t quote me on that. You can get a provisional driving license (learners’) from 17, which is what I have.

        It’s less uncomfortable and more mind-numbingly miserable. I’m actually only now beginning to rebuild my friendship with somebody after that, and that was 2011.

    • nevillegirl says:

      Ah, OK. That makes sense.

      Ugh, that sucks. But I’m happy that things are getting better (?) with that friend now.

  9. Heather says:

    I always thought that song was called Baba O’Reilly and now I’m confused as to why it would even be called that…

    Anyway, I agree with a lot of that. Sarcasm. Parents. Friends. Being a teenager makes for an interesting life… Yup. That’s all we can say, really. XD

  10. John Hansen says:

    Oh my god, this is amazing. Your living on your own bullet point is particularly spot on.


    (Also I dread college and having to, like, learn to the laundry.)

    • nevillegirl says:

      Thank you! 🙂


      (I can’t decide how I feel about college. I want to be independent, but at the same time I’d rather just be a child forever. Also, you know, there’s that laundry problem…)

  11. Fida says:

    I was reading this and yup, I agree with most of this. Thank you for sharing!

    Btw, I love Counting Stars. I need to check out that other song you mentioned.

  12. Taylor Lynn says:

    I’m late commenting, but I can totally relate to so much of this! Too much to really specify without reposting half this post in the comments, but I just have to comment on your contradictions–especially the two different things old people say about our generation, because it’s SO TRUE. Half of the time they think we’re awesome and half the time you see all these articles and things about how we’re the downfall of the human race, haha. Even *I* have both those opinions sometimes! Anyway, though, this is a great post–fabulous work. And thanks for sharing!

    • nevillegirl says:

      I know, right? It can be pretty awkward sometimes – like, my neighbors and grandparents tell me I’m brilliant, and then I get dirty looks from the little-old-lady-librarians just for setting foot in that place, and either response is pretty extreme and not really necessary!

      Thank you, I’ve been overwhelmed by the sheer number of people who said they loved this post! 🙂

      • Taylor Lynn says:

        Haha, yeah. The thing is, 1/3 of the time I think teens are awesome and another 1/3 of the time I’m totally disillusioned with our generation. The last 1/3 of the time, I’m somewhere in the middle, which is probably a whole lot more accurate. 😉 Hugs!

    • nevillegirl says:

      Ehehe, yeah, same here!

  13. Pingback: Quarterly Rewind, Fall 2014 – Movies, TV Shows, Senior Year, And An Awful Lot Of Reading | Musings From Neville's Navel

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