Midterms and Sanity: College/Life Updates

So, I am currently about halfway into my first semester back in college and I realize I haven’t really given you any updates on my college and classes. This is mostly because I’ve been so busy. This week is especially tough, as midterms are here and I’ve been lacking sleep for the last couple weeks. As of when this post is going up, I will be taking my biggest midterm in one of my history class.

Honestly, I didn’t have a post to go up today, and instead of just not posting or putting up a poem, I wanted to update on my college, classes and general life. If you don’t care and want to get straight to the book tags and book reviews, just skip this post.


If you’re curious to learn about the classes I’m taking, check out this post. My two online classes have been relatively easy, once I figured out what the teacher expected and how to do well on the tests and quizzes. And others are more work, but none of them are super hard.

In my Western Civilization class from 1500 to the modern day, we started in the Renaissance (so we learned about Michelangelo, Copernicus, Christopher Columbus, etc.) and currently we are in the middle of the Industrial Revolution (1850’s or so). I’m enjoying the class, divided between online lectures of the professor and text reading. The text is biased, presenting facts and then spinning a narrative (for example, presenting the Catholic Church as mostly bad and glossing over the good things it did). But for the most part, I’m enjoying this class. And it’s pretty easy.

My other online class is studying music from around the world. The class is pretty much read two chapters of an online textbook, take an open book test, and rinse and repeat five times. The tests are detailed, but if I read the chapters a few times, I have no trouble. There are a couple simple papers, but I’ve finished all of them already. In fact, in this class, I’ll be done with it in a few weeks. This is nice, meaning I’ll only for four classes to deal with for the rest of the semester.

My other history class, covering from ancient times to 1500, is also going well. We started in Mesopotamia, moved through ancient Greece and Rome, the Rise of Christianity and Islam, and we’ve just reached the Middle Ages. Our teacher is a bit of a cranky old man, but he’s knowledgeable and endearing once you get to know him. I’m taking his midterm as of when you read this.

I also completed my first big paper in his class, on the subject of Cicero’s Second Phillipic Against Antony. Cicero was a Roman Senator around the time of Julius Caesar (so around 50 BC), who following Julius Caesar’s assassination spoke out against Marc Antony, who was seizing power. Anyway, I got an A on the paper, so that’s good because it is 25% of my grade.

My Chinese class is going well too. It’s hard to write, but the grammar in Chinese is relatively easy to learn (for example, they don’t use plurals and Wednesday is literally “third day of the week” 星期三 – xing qi san). And I’m doing well, meeting after class with the assistant teacher to practice some more.

My choir class is relatively easy (it’s just about showing up and practicing). Our first performance is tomorrow evening, and the theme is “Night of the Opera,” so you know we’re singing a lot of Opera songs (including one in Italian and German, which are my least favorites).

As you can tell, my classes are all going well, but I am stressed out with midterms.

Social Life

I’ve tried going to several different clubs, but either they met late at night when I usually do homework, or they didn’t feel like a fit for me. However, I have fell in with a group of friends, who I’ve started playing Dungeons and Dragons with. For those who don’t know, DnD is a roleplaying game where you create a character and go on adventures together while the DM (Dungeon Master) creates the missions. It’s great fun, even though I’m a beginner still. And these friends are truly amazing people!

I’ve tried to join a study group too, but it is frustrating when you do all this work and the rest of the group kind of just wants to pick your brain to do better in class. So I probably won’t be meeting with that study group anymore.

I feel I’m not quite as social as I was expecting to be, but I also know I’ve found some great people to be friends with. Quality over quantity, I suppose.

Other Stuff

I have given up doing a lot of stuff since college started. I try to keep active on my blog, but it sometimes takes me an entire day to answer comments (sorry about that).

I have stepped back from the internet in general. I have ceased watching all but my absolute favorite Youtube channels and can’t remember the last time I watched a movie or Korean drama. I just haven’t had time.

My sleeping has also decreased, from averaging 9 hours a night to about 6 to 7 hours. And it’s not like I’m going to bed much later, but my body just automatically has started getting up earlier and earlier (from 7 to 6 and now often to 5:30). It’s probably because of stress, and hopefully after midterms are over it will get slightly better until finals.

Also, I have been listening to a lot of music and reading books I don’t usually, because all my new friends keep recommending me songs and books. So I’ve started listening to more rock, which I rarely listen to, and reading more fantasy. So you might see more fantasy book reviews going up soon.


College isn’t perfect by any means, and I am struggling with the stress, but there is a lot to enjoy about my new life and I intend to make the most of it.

For those who are in college, how has your semester been? If not, how has your fall been? I hope you all are enjoying books, good friends, and lots of tea (or coffee, depending on your preference). Let me know how your recent months have been, follow my blog for more musings and, as always,

Best wishes in your lives full of adventure,

Madame Writer

4 thoughts on “Midterms and Sanity: College/Life Updates

    1. Lists maybe. I like to write lists to make me stay organized. Like what I need to do today, or this week. Also, I find it’s so important to find some way to unwind at the end of the day, or I’ll get too stressed about everything. And don’t procrastinate. But honestly everyone studies differently, and what works for me in time management might not work for you. I hope that helps.


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