Maryana Garcia - #LivingLit

We all want to live lives worth writing about. Whether you think your life’s a novel, a script, a poem, a song, or something more indefinable, you can be sure of one thing: we are all works in progress. Living Lit is a #humpday hoorah about finding inspiration in the stories that surround us. It’s about how reading and writing in the Waikato can help us to discover the epicness in others and in ourselves.

Image By Maryana Garcia

Image By Maryana Garcia

Who am I?

I’m a girl with an Asian face, a Spanish name and an American accent who’s in love with Aotearoa. I’m an Instagram poet, wannabe wordsmith, and TED addict whose only regular work out is to work things out in writing. I’m just hoping that sharing my musings will save you some headaches. 

What can you expect?

Poetry, playlists, book reviews, mindful travelogues, creative events and opportunities for the Waikato’s young writers, readers and listeners (I think that covers everybody). In each post I will share stories and resources to keep us open and wondering. To help us live lit.

Most importantly - Why?

I believe that the Waikato is home to committed, selfless young people. But we don’t hear enough about them. I believe that my peers are informed, idealistic and hungry for change. But we all need help to make that change happen. The phrases Me Generation, Generation Stress, and Generation Commitment Phobe make me cringe. But I have to admit that each stereotype has grain of truth to it. I am, after all a Millennial who: 

  1. Has just begun a (possibly) narcissistic blog,
  2. Probably stresses more than I should and
  3. Doesn’t like to take risks. 

However, I am not limited to that 1, 2, 3. And neither is anyone else in our generation. We just need the perspective and the balance to see, share and tell both sides of the story. 

#LivingLit exists to do just that by highlighting the vibrancy that the Millennials have to offer through pieces of (aspiring and) inspiring art. Art like this poem which I like to think is #LivingLit’s anthem:

This is not a Void


We are the grassroots kids. 

Of a mountain high movement,

Connected by the struggle

Of our stick and stone spangled 


Our eyes are brimstone bright.

We are pledged to kindle kindred flames, 

To fly frontierward.


So when you see 

The writing on the wall, 

A discordant splash of unspoken lines,

A stalled inner storm too long stifled



Sing loud.

Let your echoes 

Ring irenic in the blood,

Ripple deep through shallow surfaces.

Because this?

This is not a void.

This is the only stage we’ve got

And we must make it rumble.

16.3 % of the population of the Waikato is between the ages of 18 and 30. That is more than enough to make some noise. To start redefining how our generation is perceived both by others and by ourselves. So...

I challenge you:

To put the LIVE in #LivingLit. Not sure how? Complete any one of the following challenges and share it with the tag #LivingLit. 

  • Enrol to vote. It's not too late to make sure you can put your tick where your values are. 
  • Promote a young person who debunks the negative hype around Millennials. Share their story.
  • Get behind a cause. You can start by registering for Seed Waikato’s first event. Yes, that was proud plug from me. 
  • Don't hit the snooze button. Hit the ground running. Make the first choice of your day an active one.
  • Catch up with a friend, on time and in real time. Hit up Neat Places for some awesome meetup venues.

Good luck and until next time, live lit!

P.S. If you liked the poem follow @ripagepoet on Instagram.


Maryana Garcia

Maryana is a firm believer in the power of storytelling. You can find her poetry on Instagram.