Welcome to the new era.

We interrupt our normal programming to announce that this blogger just become a US Citizen.

 

I landed in this country 10 years ago, with 1500 dollars to my name and an extraordinary  passion to win. At that point of my life, I didn’t belong anywhere. I hated living in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro was never meant for me, and Fortaleza where my parents were living was a no go. I have tried before.

Home is where you heart is

When I arrived in Chicago, something hit different. I wanted to stay and grow roots for the first time in my life. Even during the worst moments, I could still see my future in it.  For the first time, I felt like I belong somewhere. I was not afraid of anything, I just wanted to make it work. As I walked around town, I learned really fast that in America, you HAVE to act like you belong. Just like Anna Delvey, in Inventing Anna, if you pretend hard enough that you belong, they will believe you do. That’s what I did.

I never scammed anybody, but when it comes to Fake till you make it, she got a point.

The minorities like me knows what I’m talking about.

Within 6 months living in Chicago, I had it all. But I also had something my country never gave to me.Confidence. This country is made by people that take chances, that kick the entry door. We suffer, we cry in silence, but we also brush off the dust, every day at dawn, and start over. The minorities like me, knows exactly how to get over situations fast, in order to survive. It’s a jungle out here.

You become a citizen as soon as you leave your country behind and make your way into this place. The rest is just formalities.

The reason why I wrote all that, it’s because I just got my citizenship. I love Disney movies and I recently watched Pinnochio. It resonated with me so much.

Husband said “Hold on, there is one string attached. Its your wedding ring”

Well my bad 🤣 I meant no strings with immigration.

There are no strings to hold me down. To make me fret or make me frown.

After 10 years of having nightmares about visiting my family in Brazil and couldn’t go back in the US, I’m finally out of the lions’ dent. No more wake up sweating in the middle of the night. I’m here to stay.  With all that being said, I will be focusing this blog in a less overdramatic line of writing.

September 2022
September 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

As this blog has always been about my journey as an immigrant, which I will always be, I will continue to write about my experiences, but I will also be focusing in other projects. Now that the haze has lifted, I want to participate in some writing contests, with Coverfly, travel and dedicate more of my time to the youtube channel.

I’m moving forward to more of Film/producing/ editing line of work. Live out loud too will soon be Live out loud Too Productions. I waited for this moment for a long time. Three years to be exact. I like to think I just didn’t do it because I don’t have a garage. Or because of the Pandemic. I still don’t have a garage, but I will make it work.

Hopefully if you are still reading this, please my youtube channel! I’ve been posting shorts lately, as I couldn’t focus on writing or editing for the life of me. This is the latest short I posted!

 

“Yippee-Ki-Yay, Motherf*****.”

 

See you soon!

JS XXX

How to write for a travel outlet

 

How to write for a travel outlet publication? I’m still trying to find out for the past 15 years.

During Tourism and hospitality college, I spent countless hours at the library reading Travel Magazines. At that point, while living in Brazil, my dream and life goals were to travel and write to one of those magazines. Not to be stuck in a hotel for the next 15 years, at the front desk, dealing with people traveling all over the world. I should be the one traveling!

I was never meant to get roots behind the desk.
How to write for a travel magazine? Asking for a friend

My favorite magazine at that time was Lonely Planet. It contained the travel guides, which I pretty much became obsessed with and promised myself, someday I would be one of those cool travel writers. I would write the article, take amazing photographs and leave like a Nomad. I just found out they have nomad visas now, since some people are working remotely full time!

At that time, I was also checking the possibility of being a photographer for the National Geo magazine. Little silly 20 years old me with big dreams, living in Brazil. That was way before we have internet access and all this cool things that the technology gave us.

One day I stared a blog to talk about my internship programs abroad, which I carefully and ruthlessly named “Where the hell is Joana?”

“Where the hell is Joana?”

The blog “Where The hell is Joana?” was to write about my experiences abroad, during the 3 months I was out of my country, for the first time ever, while living in North Carolina. My first mistake was: I decided to write in Portuguese, because my vocabulary at that time was rough and kept to a bare minimum.

When I wrote my first post and send it to my mom, she didn’t like it. She wrote me on msn messenger (yes, that long ago) and told me to not expose her or my dad. Nobody needed to know our personal life. I didn’t mean in any way to expose them, its not like they were celebrity rock starts and I was about to drop a major gossip on them.

I just wanted to write!
My dream job in my early 20’s

I would move on to my own adventures in short time. I just get drowned. I tried others posts, but my writing was confusing and random, as I focused more on the plugins and photos than my pieces I was writing itself. I tried again and reactivate the blog during the other internships, until I quit BlogSpot all together in 2009.

No shame on that. Years and years later, the writing got better. After all, this is my second language, I was  born and raised and for my entirely life, Portuguese is my first language.

Life has a funny way to go around.

First I had to learn how to write fictional pieces, learn how to put a storyline, characters arc and development in perspective, until I could actually write non fiction with more confidence.

Again, I always wanted to write travel magazine articles, but for that I needed to learn how to tell a story. I still don’t have a magazine writing job, but I’m thankful we have blogs now. I’m also thankful for being able to document my travels on Youtube. It’s all taking place now.

Blogs and Youtube videos run on the same expectation of being heard and seen, but due to people’s lack of attention, my Youtube travel content is going much better than the blog has ever been. I’ve been learning a lot, especially about SEO and algorithm, so I will write a post about it, probably in the next week.

TRVLS & Comida – Youtube Channel

It’s all in the air now.
I’m working on some youtube shorts, since we are working full time and can travel all time

Maybe I had to go around for a few years or many years before I was able to pursue my long life dream of telling stories while traveling. Maybe some day I will get financed to write my web series, If I ever sit down to write it.

It’s all in the air now. Things actually work, you just have to be patient. And no, you are never too old to pursue your dream. Yes, I get that we can’t just drop everything and focus only on what we’d like doing it. We have bills to pay. (most of us has anyway. Trust fund kids, no)

Hang in there.  It will get better.

See you next week!

JS

XXX

The winds are shifting and that’s ok!

How and why will I be focusing on travel content instead of writing fiction? –

800 words.

My love for writing fictional content is still here, and it will still happen, but as for right now, I will try something that was there before. Something that has been in my mind for the past 15 years. Creating traveling content to move forward to fiction in the long run.

February was a busy month.

I’m trying to keep up with the blog posts, while also managing to work full time and survive the cold Colorado winter. This year has been a hard hit for us. We have snow every week and frigid temperatures that make us not want to leave the house. Not leaving the house makes me not want to write anything. I need to find a coffee shop to get less distracted.

Two weeks ago, even in sub temp cold weather, we decided to drive to a ski area and have lunch there. We needed to check the ski resorts area and why not do that online when you can drive two hours just to have lunch and make a few videos of it?

The GoPro can work some miracles.

Photo by Jamie Fenn on Unsplash

I got a Gopro 9 for my birthday last October and that was the first time I used to film some content with it. Let me tell you, a GoPro makes an entire difference in video quality.

For someone who is a newbie like me, the Action Camera actually can work miracles. By the way, my next blog post will be about filming/editing gadgets for newbies.

One of the Youtube content creators I follow and make some awesome videos was talking about the gadgets he uses, as he has been working with photography for the past 15 years. That immediately took me back to the time I fell in love with Photography in 2004 and how different my life would be now.

What if I had followed what I wanted to work with? Would I be successful? Would I have a youtube channel talking about photography and videography? Would I be a pro at this point? It’s all in hindsight.

Life tripped me many times. I love writing fiction but I’m too insecure to write it. I’m very self-conscious and dramatic, and feeling like an outsider in this country doesn’t help me with my confidence. In my mind, I will wake up someday and write 300 pages and get published. My book will be chosen to be adapted to Netflix, Anna Delvey style.

The insecurity that comes from within.

Many times I ponder what is making me insecure? Why would I move mountains to live in the United States when I was younger and now that I’m here, I feel trapped?

When I was in Rio last year, my hometown, I felt like a winner. I could conquer the world, and as soon as I got back to America, my confidence was flushed and I was put back into my immigrant cave.

How does a person get out of this hamster wheel and get something done? That’s the reason why this blog exists, to share how I’m navigating life, as an immigrant trying to be happy, and getting things done.

Don’t be afraid to shift with the winds

By getting things done I mean, living my life to the fullest, while I do what makes me happy. I know what makes me truly happy. Traveling/Writing. That’s why I’m going to start filming some traveling content and posting it on social media. We will see what happens from that.

Don’t be afraid to shift the winds and adapt to whatever you are leaning to. Life is constantly changing and we are constantly evolving. I’m constantly in a spiral and I learn how to deal with my Brain giving me new ideas every day. I’m just happy I’m alive to try new things and make new plans.

Adapt.

This is not Toxic Positivity – It’s the positivity I have left to share.

I grew up with my mom saying “If you are not happy here, move.” We moved plenty of times and I had to adapt to different places and make new friends. So by my mom’s advice, if you are not happy, move. There is always a new day to try.

Change.

If what you are trying is not working, change the way you sail, or change where you are sailing. A couple of times in different pieces, I read that “You are not successful because you don’t stick with anything long enough.”

But what they never tell you is How long do you have to persist, before you start making some changes? It’s all so biased.

The video is a intro to the youtube channel I’m creating. I got some footage on Envato and the music I worked on Garage Band.

Like I said the word for this month is adapt. I’m going to New York for the first time in 15 years in two weeks. In summer we are going to hit the mountains with the trailer and create some content.

Let’s keep trying.

Fierce Living out loud too. Or at least trying to.

From time to time, I get to reevaluate why do I have this blog and my path to get where I’m today. It changed a lot, but one of the things that it hasn’t changed was the purpose.

Like the Titanic Engine, my brain is fuming and its max capacity.
My brain being bilingual

I’m out here, constantly learning how to navigate and live in a different culture that I didn’t grow up in, while I attempt to live a normal life. I dream in two languages and my brain is fuming like the Titanic engine. I get zero breaks.

The purpose of this blog is not to talk about me personally. It’s to talk about my experiences as an immigrant, in a constantly mid 30’s crisis, and with what I’m going through, find some people that can resonate with my experiences. I’m not an expert in anything.

I don’t have the authority to teach people how to do this or that, since I’m still living my life as best as I can.
Trying to be an influential blogger posing with my mug.

I could teach the younger generation how to work hard and chase dreams, but I’m still working on mine. Teach them how cool it was not to have a phone and be monitored by other people 24 hours a day.

You could just leave and walk around, without being disturbed by a thousand different media outlets. These days we carry a personal computer in our pockets. There was a time when to reply to emails, I had to sit down turn on my computer, wait for the internet to connect, and pray for nobody to pick up the phone and disconnect me.

The point is, I don’t have any authority in any subject. So I write about my struggles to get connections.
Disney Springs

I remember when I first started this blog, the idea behind was to simplify it call it “Live out loud”, because at that time I was still going through a Creative Writing bachelor’s degree and how writing in a second language, in the same level of a born and raised American was a daily challenge.

Writing about my assignments and the difficulty to fit in in the world of a writer was already hard by itself, having to explain that English is my second language was the real struggle. Even so with this being very difficult, I was still prompt to live my life out loud too.

I’m still doing my best to Live Out Loud Too

“Live out loud too” meant that at that moment I felt like I need to showcase my writing abilities, at the same time sharing my experiences as an immigrant. When I graduate the blog took a turn to a more serious tone of “why don’t I fit in?” when I moved to Austin, Texas.

Being in the south again, after living in Chicago, brought back memories of those years I was an outcast.

Living in Georgia for four years, meant I had to be on tiptoes constantly, explaining where I came from and what was I doing in America, why I didn’t want to stay in Brazil, and how peculiar my accent was. Southern hospitality is a lie. I even watched youtube videos on how to manage my accent and sound like a true American.

Yes, those videos are there for you to learn how to fake your accent. Just forget your first language and mimic the sound of the words. When you work in a place that is constantly harassing you for your “Language Barrier”, and giving better tables to people who speaks more fluent, you tend to get desperate.

When I moved to Chicago, it was fine. When I moved to Texas, even on my stop in Dallas, I already felt the burn of being back in the south.

 

on my way to Austin, 2019. 

The blog helps me personally and it has been a big part of what I love doing it. Writing and sharing stories about being an immigrant, in a constantly changing world.

After a time, with some comments and talking with friends, I realized that what I feel is not only immigrants’ perks. Americans and other people abroad feel the same way I do.

“Do it for the Gram.”

Some of the mid 30’s I know are also in a constant crisis, because we couldn’t keep up with what has been asked of us. Rent, bill, eat right, pandemic, work being a good wife, being a good mom, being a good employee, being a good friend. Look good for the Gram, have some special skills, like something artistic. Have a podcast, have a blog, write in the journal, go to therapy. Travel, showcase, eat outpost gorgeous places. When do we take breaks?

We all have dreams that we would love to make true, but we have to battle with the day to day life. Social media doesn’t make it any easier either. The feeling of constantly being left behind is real and it doesn’t mean you are not doing enough.

You are probably doing more than is asked of you and getting exhausted in the process. Believe, I’m too. We all are. While I’m still trying to Live out Loud too.

Trying to dance to my favorite song, watch my favorite movie for the 1000th time, try to bake bread that never raises. That’s how I live out loud too. Doing little things that make me happy and living my life the best I can.

While being an immigrant, while being in my 30’s without a promising career, without any funds to one day purchase a house. Life is here and now and one of the things I learned with the pandemic is that you cannot wait for tomorrow or next week to start doing things you like. Or you are at risk to be stranded in your house for years to come, while they try to “Flatten the Curve”.

Last but not least, Live out Loud too means acceptance. You have the right to live your life as it pleases you, as loud as you can.

No one on this planet has the right to judge you or tell you how to live. Or hurt you because you don’t act like them, don’t look like them, or don’t talk like them. To hell, these people keep putting you in boxes.

On my part, I started talking with my normal accent. No more hiding my flaws or the way I sound to please a honky tonky American who never let his county. How are you going to show you are living out loud too? Please let me know in the comments!

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