There are a lot of great things about DePaul being on a quarter system, and there are a lot of not-so-great things that go along with it. I think we can all agree, however, that Spring Break is a great thing. As students, we are lucky enough to have a break that’s actually a break. That is, our school doesn’t just get a week off in the middle of the academic term where students are still doing coursework on their days off. Instead, we get a full week away from classes and from the stresses of homework, tests, and essays. Because of how much work we do during those ten weeks, it’s easy to fall into the trap of watching Netflix for ten days straight so you can catch up on every show you didn’t have time to watch over Winter Quarter. But there’s so much more to Spring Break than that.
If you’re going somewhere on Spring Break, odds are that you’ll be spending a lot of time either in a car, or on a plane, or both. Take that time to read fun and interesting books and to experience what it’s like to travel. Grab a window seat and enjoy the ride. Bask in your travels and have amazing adventures while also garnering inspiration from the writing of others. Use those adventures and write something great.
If you’re not leaving the city over Spring Break, you probably still have a nice chunk of free time. Catch up on those novels that you’ve been shelving for too long. Take a walk in the (hopefully) warm, Spring weather. Experience what it’s like to be in Chicago without the stresses and the worries that inevitably come from school. Use that to shape your observations, your notions, and your thoughts into something worth writing about. Without assignments to worry over, now is the time to write for yourself.
If through all of these experiences, you want to talk through your thoughts and you don’t know how, here are a few ideas to get your mind moving and thinking in creative ways that stretch more than just your ability to write in an academic setting:
- Take a walk down your usual path and pay attention to your surroundings more than you do in your daily rush. Try to write about something that you’ve never noticed before.
- Think about this question: How is today different than any other day?
- Take a picture of something interesting you encounter and let that photo be your inspiration. How does that thing feel, sound, look, taste, and smell?
- Write about a memory of spring from your childhood. Did you take a memorable vacation with your family? Go on adventures with your neighborhood friends?
This Spring Break, you can go on vacation but don’t let your brain go on vacation. Use this opportunity and let the season inspire you to create something refreshing and different. That’s what Spring is about, after all: the creation of something new.