*Image courtesy of Pinterest*
I first met Lori in my second year of my Undergrad. We had a mandatory class together, during which our (very) old professor would take out a magnifying glass to read notes and auction off his books to us. We sat beside each other everyday. She had really long hair, was quiet in a mysterious way, and had a tattoo behind her ear. I didn’t talk to anyone in that class (I would later find out that one of my other best friends was in the class as well and sat behind me), but I worried when she wasn’t there, and tapped her on the shoulder if she started to doze off.
Near the end of the term, we decided to get together to study. I quickly found out we had a lot in common, and she would be taking one of my classes next term. Perfect. Only two years in, and I had finally made a friend!
The next semester, I showed up to our class to learn Lori had switched majors. I was devastated; I don’t like making new friends and find it difficult to get out of my shell at first.
Within the first few months of knowing Lori she switched majors and applied to a University across the country. On paper it seemed like it would be impossible for us to remain friends, but she was the first person I got close to in University and she seemed to understand me on a whole different level.
Lori is this crazy, inspirational person who changed my life. My writing would not be where it is today without her. I wouldn’t have even continued the short story that will soon be my first novel without her encouragement and suggestions. I see Lori in person once a year, but we Skype whenever we can; whenever one of us has a new idea that we need to develop; or when I’m struggling in the romance department (ie: all the time).
We connected so quickly and so deeply. To this day, I have no idea what force brought her into my life but I am oh so glad. I could go on and on about how fantastic Lori is, but I promised myself I would keep this short.
Lori was the obvious first choice for a segment I am calling “Meet the Messes” – a biweekly installment in which I introduce you to some of the other hot messes in my life. I hope you love Lori as much as I do.
Red Hot: So how do you define a ‘hot mess’ and what does being a hot mess mean to you?
Lori: Being a hot mess means, first that you’re really hot.
RH: (Laughs) That’s important.
L: And second, the mess part, people feel like you’re all put together but really you’re just a huge bunch of chaos going on inside. Everyone is like “Wow, you’re so calm and collected. She has so many plans!” In reality, you’re just like um, I have no idea what I’m going to do next. I have no idea about anything. Just figuring it out one step at a time.
RH: What’s your hot mess moment?
L: [REDACTED – but I can tell you it was a good one involving champagne and New Year’s! 😉]
RH: Oh my gosh, Lori! Okay, moving on, how do you stay motivated?
L: I think motivation comes from doing something that aligns with your inner self. So, when we do something for a reason outside of us, like finishing school for our parents or doing this thing that will look good for [my future], we tend to get really demotivated. So my motivation is doing things that I love, because I love them.
RH: I like that answer a lot [I paused here because everytime I’m with Lori she says something so amazing that makes me reevaluate my own life.] So what is the best way to procrastinate?
L: Doing other things you love. (Laughs) I have two types of procrastination: I have the habit procrastination of procrastinating because I’m stuck in this routine of doing this, for example, watching a TV show of a series you always watch.
L: The second procrastination is when you’re not trying to procrastinate, you just get really caught up in doing something you love and put that before doing something you’re responsible for.
RH: I never actually thought of that as procrastination, to be honest. I don’t know what I thought of it as being, but that’s a good way to put it. That’s probably the best kind of procrastination: to get caught up in something that you love to be doing.
L: And for me, it’s not necessarily getting caught up, but going on these spontaneous tangents of researching certain topics, or learning about certain things that have nothing to do with my courses, but that I love. Your mind is automatically going towards what you love. I also feel like if you just do what you love, that procrastination is going to happen a lot less.
RH: Nice. So this is kinda the big question – and I already know the answer to it, but my readers don’t – are there any projects that you are currently working on?
L: There’s too many things that I love and am passionate about, that it’s too much for me to handle. I am constantly having to choose which things to work on, and picking up something – working on it for a bit, putting it down, finding a new passion and working on it. Things I am passionate about and currently, working on would be, my novel, which is very brief and in its beginning stages like you are aware of.
RH: It’s still a baby.
L: A little infant; a little baby. But that’s a really exciting project. Also, I’ve been thinking of doing a research project and writing a book on that – a nonfiction book as well. There’s too much to put into words – I’m going on this process of uncovering myself. I want to figure out exactly who I am, what my roots are, my origin story, how I progress through this life. A lot of introspection and healing through that.
RH: Alright, well, thank you so much, Lori, for being my first “mess” to interview. Any final comments?
L: Another thing that I forgot to mention about “hot mess” is, when you say “hot” I think it’s like, yeah you’re physically beautiful – and I like the word beautiful a lot more – but it’s more importantly about the sort of confidence, or vibe you give off. It’s being completely and utterly myself and I’m okay with that.
RH: I love that.
L: That’s what I feel being a hot mess is; because if you’re a mess, you’re not lending yourself to being put into a box, or a label, or a neat and discreet category. You’re everything, and yet you’re nothing at the same time. You’re completely your unique self. And no one else is like you.
RH: Awesome. Thank you so much. I briefly had a panic attack where I was like, oh my god, what if that didn’t record any of this, but it got it so it worked.