Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Computer-Game Junkie...

...was what I had originally entitled my article, before the Star changed it to "Connected by an Addiction".

(Personally, I think my title sounds better than theirs. Don't you think?)

When I first saw my name appear on the Sunday Star this morning, I was initially pleased and happy. However, that quickly turned to annoyance when I realized that the paper had not returned my email after I had submitted the article. 

There was not a sound from them about whether they had selected my article or not. And there it is, in the Star, completely without my prior knowledge.

As I scanned through my article once again, I was peeved to see that they had edited a few parts in my article that were, in actuality, incorrect.

"Why won't you die? Just die already!"

Is that sentence (or rather question) not correct? The editor had corrected it to "Just died already!" @.@

OMG. The 'already' in that question does not, in any way, indicate a past action, but rather is used here in this context to convey exasperation!

You do understand what I mean, don't you? Why won't they just get it already?!
(There, another example for you >.<)

Another part, was when they corrected "level 3-12" to "levels three to twelve". It is obvious they have never played Angry Birds before. I meant Level 3 stage 12. Not Levels 3 to 12. If I had meant it as levels 3 to twelve, I would have written it as levels 3 to 12 >.<

I was annoyed, to say the least. First, for not informing me beforehand of the publication, of which I thought I thoroughly deserved (Don't you think the author deserves to be given a heads up? >.<) and second, for making changes to my article that are incorrect. >.<


The woes of a published author I guess. (HAH. Kidding :P)

(Fyi, this was my second time being published in the Star. The first was when my short story was selected to be published in the "Heart and Soul" section. And on a related note, I have had two other short stories published in a compilation book called Write Out Loud edited by Karen Ann Theseira, published by Oak Publications. You can look it up :P)

Here's the full article, if you'd care to read it :D

And here's my original version :)

The Computer-Game Junkie
by Lisa Kwan

            “Die, you pigs! Die! Die!”
            “Why won’t you die? Just die already!”

            I glance over my laptop screen to the woman sitting opposite me with her feet propped up on a sofa arm, clicking away furiously at her mouse as she tries to get past level 3-12 of Angry Birds, one of the most popular games out right now.
            The woman is fifty five years old. She is my mother.
            My mother, a homemaker, is completely into computer and online games. No, that would be an understatement. My mother is addicted to computer and online games. It all started several years ago, the progression from modest just-to-pass-the-time playing to hardcore I’m-playing-this-till-I-achieve-high-score evident.
            It began with Spider Solitaire. She would play game after game for hours on end, competing against herself to obtain higher and higher scores on the record. Then, when social networking sites like Facebook began to popularize and a vast range of online games with it, she was hooked on Bejeweled Blitz. And yes, she created her own Facebook account then too. Without my help, I might add. I woke up one morning to her proud proclamation, “I have Facebook! Add me as a friend, okay?” Which I did, rather reluctantly.
            The next level of her game addiction was competitive. With online games, she discovered that she could challenge and compete against friends who played the same game. Every day, I would see her on the Bejeweled Blitz page, “buying” special tools to increase her chances of winning. Quite often, I would hear her frustration when she did not top the score board, “Bee Choo is Number One with 312,000? How can?!” And she’d proceed with another game of Bejeweled Blitz, intent on knocking this Bee Choo friend of hers off her Number One spot.
            Her latest craze is Angry Birds. (I have to admit it was my fault for introducing it to her in the first place.) Often I’d hear the now familiar shrieks and squawks of the birds being catapulted into the air, and the ridiculously annoying (but cute!) background music of the game. Sometimes, when I think about it, her addiction to these games scares the hell out of me. Even I cannot compete with her when it comes to games. However, at the same time, I am pleasantly surprised at how well my mother has acclimated to the technology world.
            She writes long-winded emails, even forwards inspiring ones to my account once in a while. She has a Facebook account and is not as dormant as I expected her to be. She knows how to comment on photos, “like” statuses and use FB Chat. She has a blog, though she has not blogged in a long while now, which I helped her set up. Recently, I taught her how to search for and download wallpaper images of her favourite Korean actor (Hyun Bin) for our computer’s desktop. At this point, I will not be surprised if she one day asks me to help her create a Twitter account.
            All this has made me see my mother in a new light. Even though in many ways she is still “conservative”, I can see that my mum is an “adapter”—someone who adapts to new development and progresses with the times. It also shows her willingness to do so. She is very much “young at heart”, and because of that, the gap between us is that much smaller. We relate to the other more, we understand each other more. We share a bond. Maybe the solution to the generation gap is to get the parents hooked on computer games! J

Hope you liked it! :D


May Lee said...


shandye. said...

congratulations lisa...

urrgghhh... i can never write in english. i guess that is just my forte kot. hahaha...

better stick to writing in bm la kot for me...


Ðârren said...

wow suli! =) congrats on officially being a published author. and that was really heart-warming essay btw... kudos to your mum too =)

SandraC said...

u are an excellent writer thats why i love to read ur blog posts (no pressure to use bombastic words in future lah)
u write it in a way which is simple and easy to understand and feel by the person reading it. i was telling my mom- U WERE BORN TO BE A TEACHER!!
congrats on getting published! ur going places lah fren!

Liz said...

Thanks everyone for your compliments! I don't think I'm THAT good, but thank you anyways. I appreciate it! :D