The Ups and Downs of Friendships in Your 20s

How to cultivate new friendships in a closed-off world

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Photo: Elevate/Unsplash

How do you make new friends in a world that is partially shut down? We can no longer reach out and shake someone’s hand. We can’t be within six feet of each other. We can’t enjoy shared mass experiences like concerts or sporting events.

Making new friends was already hard enough without any of these obstacles. Back before, when things were “normal,” making new friends could be as tricky as dating. Where do you meet people outside of work? How do you transition from acquaintance to friend?

For most people, once you leave university, your ability to meet and make new friends takes a huge hit. Not because you’re less willing or interested, but simply because your environment is no longer conducive to making new friends at the same rate. …


If you’re a first-time freelancer, here’s how you can start

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Photo by Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash

Every first-time freelancer is faced with the same dilemma: you need samples in order to gain work, but you need to work in order to create samples. So what are you supposed to do?

Let me preface this by saying I am not an advocate of doing work for free — most of the time. But there’s one occasion where the value you’re getting out of the work might actually be more than what you’re offering: when you’re first starting out and need samples.

If you’re dead set against producing work for someone else without getting paid under any circumstances, that’s fine. …


Seven scripted podcasts to listen to (that aren’t Homecoming)

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Photo by israel palacio on Unsplash

Are you scrolling through Netflix, feeling like you’ve watched everything? (You haven’t, I promise, but I feel you.) Have you been reading for so long your eyes are starting to hurt? (It’s kind of a good feeling, but again, I feel you.) Are you staring at your partner, waiting for them to put on a one-man show for you? (As entertaining as that may be, I don’t think they’ll do it.)

But don’t fret! Because there’s a whole other genre of storytelling that way too many people are missing out on: the audio drama.

If you’re a big podcast listener, you’ve probably stumbled upon these already. If you’re not, you probably just rolled your eyes at me and muttered something like, “Who is this Grandma? Is she talking about radio plays?”


Five steps to stop procrastinating small tasks and clear your mind

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Photo: Isaac Smith/Unsplash

The world is a crazy place right now, and if you’re like me, you’re probably feeling a little helpless.

I desperately needed to do something to combat the out-of-control feelings plaguing my days. So, I decided I’d conquer a simple task and feel accomplished: no more procrastination!

I hope you laughed at that because I laughed. If only it were so simple.

I have no problem admitting I have a problem with procrastination.

Welcome to the club, right?

I don’t mind procrastinating creative work. Thanks to much smarter people than me, I can confidently state my claim that procrastinating is good — nay, necessary — for pure creativity. (Did I take it a step too far? Maybe. …


The Ups and Downs of Friendships in Your 20s

And is there ever a right time?

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Photo: freddie marriage/Unsplash

I had planned on writing about how to end friendships. I had a game plan to layout for you and everything. Follow these rules, and you’ll get X results, as if ending a friendship was a simple three-step productivity hack.

But a lot has changed since I started writing this story. So much so, it almost feels wrong to keep writing about the same things as before. And yet, we all have commitments we made. As much as possible, we ought to keep those.

That thought led me to a logical conclusion: friendships are also commitments we ought to keep.

We’ve reached a point in society these days where we’re quick to toss aside anything we deem invaluable in the moment — a book, a dress, a relationship. …


Take a breath, step back, and find the joy in writing again.

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Photo by Joshua Rawson-Harris on Unsplash

A lot of our lives have turned upside down within the last few days.

Some of us are in areas with coronavirus outbreaks. Others are simply trying to abide by social distancing guidelines. Schools are shutting down, which means kids are at home. Travel plans have all been halted. And some of us are dealing with the fact that loved ones are sick.

It’s hard enough to write on a good day — how the fuck are you supposed to write on days when you can’t stop thinking about everything that’s happening?

Don’t put undue pressure on yourself

I’m all for powering through stressful times. But every once in awhile, we need to cut ourselves a break. …


From a dark fantasy set at Yale to a romance on the shores of Ancient Greece, there’s something to fill the time for everyone

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Photo by Susan Yin on Unsplash

When you need a little distraction and escapism, there’s no better answer than a good book. More than TV or film, a good book engrosses your entire mind and can transport you somewhere new. You can’t multitask; you have to be totally committed to the act of reading.

Specifically, you can’t also be scrolling Twitter while you read a book, unlike when a show is on TV.

So, in an effort to help us all check out of reality and enjoy something — even if only for an hour or two — here are some of my recent favorites in the fiction realm. …


I live in Los Angeles and I miss my commute.

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Photo by Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash

I live in Los Angeles and I miss my commute.

I know, I know. If you’re a Los Angeleno who just read that, you’re probably screaming at the computer screen. Actually, you’re probably chuckling to yourself. Because no one in the city of LA — and I repeat, no one — has ever uttered the words, “I wish my commute was longer.”

Yet, here I am, with a job that requires me walking down the block, and I’m desperately missing the time I spent in the car.

Don’t get me wrong, commutes can suck. Traffic is the worst, and dealing with other people’s moronic driving is a whole day’s worth of work, honestly, but you know what else you can do during commutes? …


Happy Thursday everyone!

First off, a big shout out to new writers Charlene DeKalb & Julie Gray — welcome to The Culture Corner!

Check out Charlene’s 5 Life Lessons From ‘The Sound of Music’ & Julie’s 5 Ways to Deal with Fandom Hate

As always, we have some great deep dives for you to check out, too.

Alex Mell-Taylor predicts the end of TV’s second golden age: From The Sopranos To BoJack Horseman: The End Of The Second Golden Age Of Television

David Hinckley discusses how sexual assault is addressed on CBS’s Tommy: Sexual Assault Justice Looks Different On TV Drama Than On TV…


The Ups and Downs of Friendships in Your 20s

How to maintain life-long friendships post-graduation

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Photo by Felix Rostig on Unsplash

When I was in school, friendships felt infinite. No amount of time or distance would ever be able to separate my friends and me. It was just so obvious, and whenever someone warned me otherwise, I thought to myself, well clearly they don’t know my friends.

Oh, to be eighteen again and blissfully ignorant of what life holds.

The truth is, I’ve lost touch with many friends over the years. Graduation came, and with it, the inevitable — we all started getting jobs, and not necessarily in Los Angeles. One of my best friends moved to New York. Another left for Vancouver. …

About

Alex Burns

Writer of screenplays, novels, and podcasts. Always looking for the next great story. alexgraceburns.com

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