Final Blogpost!

Suffice it to say, this semester has been ROUGH for me. Not be a Debby Downer and just complain the entire time, but between my home life changing considerably, spending several weeks in and out of the ER, and welcoming a new member of the family with my newborn niece, who very much enjoys screaming at the top of her lungs throughout the night (We got her checked out, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with her medically, she just likes to yell.) I’m surprised that I managed to make it through all my classes at all.

Could I have handled everything better? Absolutely. I’m not trying to use my setbacks as excuses, the blame does also fall on me for not being better with my time and making sure that I was prepared for the worst eventualities. But you know as they say, you live and learn.

I am genuinely apologetic for how little I was able to participate in this class. I was, and still am, grateful for the avenue of creative expression it afforded me, and I wish I could have had more time to focus on it, but I was teetering on the knife’s edge of burnout pretty much from the first couple of weeks, and I want to believe that I did my best despite the circumstances. Maybe I’m just being too kind to myself, but hey, it’s my self-reflection post and I get the final say.

Getting to learn to design a wordpress website was very fun, and you can find mine here. I wanted a space to store all of my writing and planning for my DnD groups, a hobby I am very much looking forward to getting back into now that I’ll have some blessed free time over the summer. I kept my design very simple and minimalist, both out of laziness and because I think that it suits me and my aesthetic.

I’m currently in the process of transcribing my writing digitally, and I’ll get them uploaded to the site once I’m over the last hurdle of finals.

Here’s a collection of the assignments I completed over the semester. 7 onwards had to be rushed over the last week or so, because once I recovered from my triple whammy of Covid, Bronchitis and Ear infection, I was desperately scrambling to catch up with all of my other classes and final assignments and making sure I come out of this semester without failing miserably.

1. What makes me happy?
2. What did I think of the First Day of CT 101

Now for what grade I deserve… that’s hard to say. I know I haven’t been the best about participation and absences. I know I definitely don’t deserve an A, that’s for people who didn’t do half the assignments over one frantic weekend right before the absolute final deadline, but at the same time I don’t think I deserve to fail. At least, I hope I don’t. Honestly, a B or B- would suit me just fine.

All I know is that I am VERY happy that this semester is coming to an end, and I’m desperately looking forward to getting more than 4 hours of sleep a night.

Love and Peace! Hope y’all have a wonderful summer break!

Assignment 10– Finalizing the Website

Designing a website is surprisingly fun! A friend and I had a blast going through all of the themes and stuff available on WordPress, and it was an experience and a half to get something set up!

To start with, I wanted to have something… fancy, yet cozy. The vibe of a study in a Victorian Era mansion, you know what I mean? But that proved to be very difficult. I browsed through pinterest and found a few pictures and stuff to serve as backgrounds, but anything I uploaded was just extremely blurry because the images were stretched out across the whole screen, and that wasn’t very appealing to me.

So, I decided to get more minimalist, something dark and stylish instead. I had some success there, I think. I’m a sucker for stuff that’s super simplistic and utilitarian, and I think it looks great!

AND I got to use one of my pictures of extremely pretentious religious symbolism I collected from Pinterest as my little logo! Best of both worlds for me.

I’m currently in the process of transcribing my writing from a notebook into digital text so I can upload them onto the website, and have it serve as an informal portfolio and a place I can come back to when I want to reread what I’ve done before and cringe at myself.

The link to my site can be found here! More coming soon!

Assignment 9: Registering a New Domain

I’ll be honest, I definitely didn’t expect setting up a website would be this easy. The last time I saw any form of web development was when I was like… five or six? And I was watching my brother try his damned best to put together a website for his band. This was in the early 2000s, so it involved a lot of frustration and hair-pulling on his end. I think I definitely subconsciously expected the same thing when I started work on mine.
But, it wasn’t! With the professor’s help, I got everything set up in under an hour. The hardest part was definitely just… picking a name I liked. I ended up settling for AaquibAbdullahWrites, because I figured that simplicity would be best.

You can find my site here!

The actual process of setting everything up was very easy, at least for me. Setting up wordpress only took a few clicks, and finding a theme I was happy with required just a few minutes of looking through all the available ones.

The site is still nowhere near done, though! I want to add some snippets and short stories I’ve written there, along with finalize the designs and whatnot, which I’ll cover in my next blog post.

Love and Peace!

Assigment 8: Domain Name

I’ve always wanted a place to put my writing. That’s been my preferred method of creative expression ever since I was super young– I don’t have the patience for the painstaking process of learning techniques and whatnot for creating art and music, and I adore the immediacy of having a thought and being able to put it to paper that writing allows. Of all creative methods, it’s the best bang for your buck, so to speak. So, I want my website to be a place for me to put all of the writing I do as a hobby: The ideas and whatnot for my DnD worlds, the little vignettes I write as snapshots into the character’s lives, the short stories that I’ve scribbled into the old notebooks in my attic.

But names are hard. They’re always the thing that trips me up. I do have a few ideas though.

Aaquib Abdullah Writes: This is extremely simple, but I think that there’s power in simplicity. Anyone who finds it will immediately know what’s going on. I’m Aaquib Abdullah, and I like to write.

In Azure Clad: This is the title I’ve kept in the back of my head for the fantasy novel I’d love to write one day. It means nothing to anyone but me, but the website is for me anyways, right?

Brain Cabinet: Kinda like a Mind Palace, but not as fancy. I don’t think it’s accurate to think of whatever’s going on up there as a palace. Since the site’s pretty much going to just be me dumping whatever comes to my head, it serves as a little cabinet, like the one you keep all the plastic bags in.

The Library: Pretty self-explanatory, I think.
The Corner: My writing setup at home is set up in a corner desk that I like to just call the corner, and the site would just be an extension of that, right?

Assignment 7: Mid-Semester Review (Better late than never!)

This semester has been rough for me, to say the least. I got hit with the triple whammy of COVID, Bronchitis, AND an Ear Infection, back to back. I was forced to miss weeks of classes as a result, and spent damn near every second since I recovered trying desperately to catch up on all my classes. That’s why I’m here now, doing this mid-semester reflection almost at the very end.

I wish I could have given this class the attention and care that it truly deserved. So few of my classes throughout my college career have allowed for creative expression, and I definitely feel as though my capacity to express my feelings is very… stunted, from not having many avenues to do so. If only the circumstances were better, but alas, we can only do what we can with what we have. I can only apologize for my lack of participation, and try my best to make up my assignments now that my most immediate crises have passed. The weekend that I’m writing this, is entirely dedicated to making up all of the assignments that I’ve missed for this class.

Learning how to format text and write blog posts has been one skill I’ve been grateful to learn from this class. As a Journalism major, I think it will be tremendously useful for me to know, going into the industry in such a modern time. That’s a facet of Journalism that’s not covered very well in my courses– I know how to conduct interviews, do my due diligence with research, and write basic scripts, but the process of actually writing and formatting of pieces hasn’t been covered much in my curriculum, especially on an online medium.

I LOVED getting to write a movie review for the DS106 Assignment. I’ve always wanted to get into it, but never truly had the opportunity before. It’s nice to be able to talk unrestrained about myself and my interests for a change, AND it gave me a solid idea for areas in which to improve if I ever choose to do reviews and stuff for a living. By far, that has been my favorite assignment.

I also enjoyed getting to make the collage for the Digital Immediacy assignment. That one definitely flexed a bunch of nearly atrophied creative muscles. I may have gotten a little pretentious with it, but hey, I had fun and that’s all that matters.

As I get more comfortable with expressing myself, I’ve seen my posts steadily get more creative and expressive, especially with the more fun assignments like the two I spoke about earlier. I’m still not completely used to using an excess of gifs while writing, but I will try to get better about that.

Assignment 6: Digital Immediacy

I have to say, collages were never really my thing. That being said, I had a blast with this assignment. It’s just fun to be creative, and truth be told, my creative muscles desperately need the exercise.

I didn’t really put any planning or forethought into this collage, it was very much a spur of the moment, go with my gut type deal where I tried to put a concept into form. It was super easy to just get into the zone, and though the finished piece doesn’t have much technical skill, I enjoyed the process a lot.

Without much further ado, here’s my collage:


My idea, vaguely, is the interplay between our past and future. As a history buff, I’ve read a lot about the various conflicts and periods of intense suffering humanity as a whole has gone through. Wars, famine, genocide, disasters. Our time on this Earth is so painfully little, and we’ve spent most of it at each other’s throats. But at the same time, despite that, we’ve never stopped progressing, never stopped advancing and reaching higher and higher than ever before. Think of the world right now, and how unimaginably baffling it would all be to someone who lived 500 years ago. Imagine how it’d feel for us to see the world 500 years from now?

So, in essence, while mankind has to carry the weight of our mistakes with us, we also have dreams of aspiring higher and higher, understanding ourselves and the world we live in.


DS 106 Assignments, Assignment 5

I’m very excited for this assignment! I really like the DS 106 assignments, there’s a lot of variety and a lot of unique assignments to get done. Me personally, I’m more drawn towards the writing assignments, specifically the ones that focus around reviewing or critiquing media, like this one about reviewing movies, or this one about reviewing games. If all else goes well, I would love to ideally build a career out of reviewing games and movies.

After all, I talk people’s ear off about this stuff anyways, might as well get paid for it, right?

So, I’ve decided that I’m going to do the first assignment I linked, about reviewing movies, and do a review about one of the movies that I loved last year:

The Batman: An Ode to the Dark Knight.

When it comes to movies, Batman’s greatest nemesis isn’t the Joker or Bane, it’s the writer’s ego. Everyone thinks they know Batman, to the point where they never really decide to do any research, because they get Batman already. Everyone knows the story, right?– Rich kid watches his parents get shot in a darkened alley, and decides to work through that trauma by beating up criminals at night dressed in spandex. They all get the basics of Batman, and because they get it, they treat it with a level of contempt that we all harbor for that which we are intimately familiar with. They don’t bother reading into the character’s history, or the numerous re-imaginings and reboots throughout the years. They never take the time to get to know the side characters who are just as integral to the Batman mythos as the caped crusader himself– The Robins, the Villains, the darkened streets of Gotham itself, and as a result they all fundamentally fail to capture the essence of the character.

Every Batman movie prior to this has fallen prey to this contempt: Tim Burton’s 1989 Batman and 1992 Batman Returns is egregious in it’s reimagining of the character. The very substance of what makes Batman Batman is thrown aside to fit Burton’s lackadaisical style-over-substance form of film-making.

Christopher Nolan’s critically-acclaimed Dark Knight Trilogy also falls prey to this. Though the acting is tremendous, with world-class performances from Cillian Murphy’s Scarecrow, Heath Ledger’s Joker, and Tom Hardy’s Bane, the character of Batman becomes a side-character in his own story. We are supposed to believe that these villains are dark mirrors to the Batman, but the lack of care and effort put into the very development of Bruce Wayne from movie to movie just fails to sell that idea.


And last but not least, Zack Snyder’s Batman vs Superman. Ugh.


Intellectually shallow and aesthetically vain, Zack Snyder fundamentally misunderstands Batman, and the sanctity of his no-kill rule, removing all the complexities of the character in service of mindless action. I could fill multiple essays with how much I despise Snyder’s style, and his butchering of every comic adaptation he’s ever done, but this is not the time nor place.


All of this is to say, that while these movies do have their merits and most are perfectly serviceable, they fail to understand Batman as a character and have no respect for the source material they are adapting.

Which brings me now to what is, in my opinion, the best movie of 2022 and the first Batman movie I’ve ever seen which finally got it right: Matt Reeve’s The Batman

Matt Reeves does what none of the other directors have done before: Research. Though his rendition of the Batman is by and large unlike any version of Batman from the comics, there is an obvious reverence to the source material that had been lacking from movie adaptations for decades.

Let’s begin with Batman himself. We see a Batman very early on in his career, only two years in. He is angry, vindictive, futilely attempting to punish the criminals of Gotham for taking his parents from him, all those years ago. He cares little for himself, risking his life to mete out violence.

Unlike the Batman of Zack Snyder’s run, this is shown to be wrong. The violence is not meant to be a glorified spectacle, it serves to show this Batman to be a man so blinded by his zealous pursuit of vengeance, that he foolishly risks his life for no gain.

Throughout the movie, as the mystery unfolds (I won’t spoil any details, as I want anyone who hasn’t gotten the opportunity to see the movie to do so.), we get to see Batman be a detective, slowly untangling a conspiracy in the vividly dark neo-noir fashion of the 80s-90s era of the caped crusader.

And, above all else, we get to see Batman be a hero. The emotional climax of this movie isn’t the spectacle and bloodshed, but Batman reaching out his hand to help someone in need, and protect them from danger. It is him learning to put his need for vengeance aside in order to truly save the city and the people he cares for.

Overall, Matt Reeve’s adaptation of Batman is one of the best ever put on screen, and a wonderful homage to the comics from which it gathers it’s inspirations. It gets many things right, and is a gripping narrative that keeps you guessing all the way until the credits. 10/10.




Assignment 4: Blogging about our passions.

I have ADHD, so my answer to ‘What are you passionate about?’ can differ wildly from week to week, or hell, even hour-to-hour. It’s a very hard question to answer usually, but thankfully I’ve been OBSESSED with tabletop RPGs recently, which you can learn more about in my week 1 post here.

Tabletop RPGs appeal to me specifically because of the sheer creative freedom it allows. I’m a huge fan of fantasy and sci-fi books, and TTRPGs give me an avenue to basically co-write my own fantasy story with my friends and family, and allow for some much-needed escapism after rough weeks of work and school.

It’s a huge year for D&D fans this year, since there’s a blockbuster movie set in the extremely popular Dungeons and Dragons setting coming out later this month!


I’m personally extremely excited for it, and it’s supremely cool to see the little details, like the spells and monsters get translated to the big screen straight from my imagination.

There’s been a influx of shows based on DnD recently. On Amazon Prime, there’s the Legend of Vox Machina, an animated series that is based on a DnD Podcast called Critical Role, which is a bunch of extremely talented voice actors from video games and anime coming together to play DnD.

I highly recommend checking it out. It’s a bit long, but it’s perfect to listen to during long commutes and to leave on in the background.





Assignment 2

What did you think on the first day of the CT101?

I was extremely excited for this class. Truth be told, I’ve had a LOT of writing intensive classes in the last few semesters and finally having a class I won’t have to write 10 page papers for is a tremendous breath of fresh air.

Did you like hearing about the course and its creative content? How did it make you feel?

Absolutely, I’m so ready to actually have fun and enjoy my assignments rather than just go through them with my mind turned off just for the required credits.


How does CT101 compare to some of your other classes so far?

So much better than my other classes. I love how relaxed and enjoyable class feels, and I love how the professor goes out of his way to make things easier on us, rather than make it needlessly difficult because that’s the way it’s always been.

It’s wonderful to be treated like a person for once.

What are the creative potentials of this class?

The only limit is your imagination!


How do you feel about learning new skills that use Internet tools?

Finally! I’m ready and excited to learn!

Assignment 1- What makes me happy on the Internet?

Hey, everyone! Hope you’re having a wonderful week.

My most recent hyperfixation has been TTRPGS– Tabletop Roleplaying Games– like Dungeons & Dragons and Pathfinder. For those unaware, TTRPGs are a form of group storytelling; One person, usually called the Game Master or GM, creates a world and a story, and everyone else at the table creates a character who participates and directs how the story goes. If you’ve ever watched shows like Stranger Things, it’s what the kids in that play.

If you’re into Fantasy and Sci-Fi or just fiction in general, it’s an awesome way to be able to craft your own daring adventures and let your imaginations run wild. And honestly? It’s a load of fun.  I’m a part of a group that meets every Saturday, and it’s a blast. For three to four hours every weekend, I get to hang out with my friends, relax and snack, and take part in a collaborative story about a bunch of brave heroes fighting against the forces of evil. It’s basically like getting to experience your own fantasy novel.

Now you might be wondering how exactly it works, and I’ll try my best to explain.

There are countless TTRPG systems, and they all focus on different genres and settings. Some are about Fantasy, some are about Science Fiction, some focus on Horror, some let you play as superheroes. Anything you can imagine, there’s probably a game system for it. But for simplicity’s sake, I’ll focus on Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition, or DnD5e, which is the most popular system right now.

In DnD, the Game Master sets the scene. For example, your group of adventurers may be exploring a dungeon, so the GM will describe what the dungeon’s moss-covered walls, the cold stone, the sound of dripping water in the darkness, to get you immersed into the scene. They’ll also describe the enemies and obstacles you’ll encounter. In a dungeon, you might deal with undead skeletons, or traps or cave-ins.

The players all come with character sheets which detail everything you need to know about your character. Say, for example that you’re playing a cunning thief, or a brilliant wizard, all of the things your character can do will be detailed in the sheet.

Here’s the sheet for one of my characters. It looks like a lot when you first start, but I guarantee it’s a lot simpler than it seems:

This all says, put simply, the things my character is good at. He’s a big, burly warrior who fights with a giant sword. He’s good in a fight, but he’s not very smart and he’s very socially awkward.

So, in a dungeon, my character would do very well in a fight against skeletons, and he’d probably be able to dig his way out of a cave-in, but he’s not very smart so he might fall prey to traps.

To determine what happens, I will have to roll a dice, usually a 20-sided one, and then add relevant numbers on the left to meet or beat a number set by the GM. So, for example, to avoid the trap I might have to roll something to do with intelligence, and meet or beat 15. Since I’m bad at intelligence rolls, I don’t add anything, and if the total of my roll meets of exceeds 15, my character avoids being hurt. If I don’t, then I take damage and my character is injured in some way.

This makes it so that there’s always some narrative tension– I can’t just say that my character is a golden God who succeeds at everything he tries. Because he can fail, his successes have meaning.

With that frankly far too long explanation out of the way, let me explain why I enjoy TTRPGs.

They’re a fantastic way to develop self-confidence and public speaking skills, in an environment that’s not very high stakes. Everyone feels awkward at first, and most people understand that everyone needs a little time to get used to it. It also helps you think creatively, and flexes the little brain muscles of your imagination. And above all, it’s just a ton of fun.

If DnD interests you, then there are countless resources online to try and find a game. I personally use the LFG (looking for group) subreddit on Reddit to find my games. And if you’re (understandably) nervous about meeting strangers in real life, there are a bunch of online sites where you can sign up to play through sites like Zoom or Discord, the most popular of which is Roll20.

And if it doesn’t interest you, that’s fine too. We all have differing tastes, and I appreciate you reading through this post to learn more about something I’m passionate about.