Summer Crush Reflection Paper 11 April 2017
de los Reyes, Six #romanceclass 2014
What Summer Crush Means to Me
As much fun as we had planning, plotting, and processing Summer Crush, it was not an easy wave to catch. First of all, it’s hard enough wrestling with all the ideas in our heads, multiply that by three and you get exponential the headaches. And we’re three very different people with very different stories, you see. So different you have to wonder what kind of cosmic event caused our universes to converge.
But there’s music, and bands, and I fan them. I stan Trainman and East Genesis Project. Of course I’d get myself together to do this.
Confession: I didn’t think Tara, Jay and I would work this well together. Sure, on the onset we were friends. In the #romanceclass-someone I see online all the time-goes to all the events sort of way. It wasn’t like I was about to jump on the last bus to La Union and spend the weekend with them or whatever. I had envisioned the process to be be strictly online, an exchange of emails, succinct messages on the chat, and a semi-regularly updated folder on Google Drive. Or so I thought.
I was wrong.
Instead we went out (actually went out and met up IRL) and had conversations that were 15% Summer Crush, 10% abs, and 75% shenanigans and crazy talk. Then we went to La Union, and can I just say I didn’t even want to go? I love the beach. You all know this. I’m a mermaid. What I don’t love is the idea of going outside, public transportation, and people. Many times I had to ask myself, “Am I really doing this?” Was I really going on a trip with new people? Yes, even then, even after a year or so of knowing them, I still thought of Jay and Tara as new people. But I went anyway. Because beach. And I sort of felt like I had to? HAHAHA. So I went. I’m glad I did.
La Union, according to our timetable, was supposed to be our reward for finishing a first draft. A trip to check on the detail work of our short stories and to fine-tune everything else that went with it. Naturally, we went on that trip with about a paragraph each written down, no substantial conflict, and essentially no story. But we had a lot of ideas, and jokes, and interactive moments between our characters so in order for all the fun things to happen, we had to plot around the crazy. We had to make it work somehow. We did. I like to think we made it work.
I also like to think the three of us worked out as well. You don’t spend an entire weekend with each other without all the stressors and anxieties and little things coming up to the surface. Oh, we were passive-aggressive about it, but we’re better friends because of it.
In retrospect, when we decided Friendship was our main objective (I think) we meant it as half a joke. A disclaimer that none of us want to fight over not getting along because, let’s face it, that’s just too much work and we still have to sit together at all the #romanceclass ~Things. Fast forward to today, Friendship is exactly what we got out of this project. Sure, the stress was how do I even describe it? levels, but if there’s one thing I learned from getting stranded at the bus terminal with these two, it’s that I don’t have to go at it on my own anymore.
What started out as a simple offhanded comment escalated into one of the most beautiful memories of this lifetime and I am eternally grateful I gave myself the chance to do this–that Jay and Tara also gave themselves the chance to part of this crazy journey with me. Thank you, ladies. It’s been an honor.
We’re doing this again. For sure.
Oh, and other things you don’t get to see in the book:
- Tara daintily hopping over the hot sand
- Sleepy-drunk Jay who can’t say no to a challenge
- Sand in inappropriate places
- 2AM heart-baring conversations under twinkly lights and paper lanterns
- The answer is always YES
It wasn’t easy, but all the good things outweigh the bad. So much so I can’t even remember the bad anymore. I’m sure there’s a lot, we wrote a book after all. Having said that, special shoutout to Ines and Miles, thank you for taking this crazy ride with us. Thank you for giving us something to look forward to, thank you for making us look good, and thank you for believing in us.
Our characters have found something they thought they lost at sea at Summer Crush, as have we. Their journey is our journey. I am happy. I’m a happy mermaid who found home out of the sea. And if you’ve read Summer Crush, are reading it, or want to read it, thank you from the bottom of my ocean heart.
Let’s all dance and sing because the night is young and the beach is an embrace and, really, at this point, what’s there to lose?