Whoa! I have a website! This is new and exciting and, hopefully, an expense I can write off on my taxes next year!

I've started this platform for a few reasons:

1. I'm entering my final year of my undergrad degree at the University of Ottawa. This is bittersweet; I have adored this program and the opportunities it's afforded me. My profs are some of my favourite people. I can practice my adequate (but improved-since-2016!) French pretty much whenever I want.

However, I'm starting to be ready for change - for a new challenge. I've built this website in anticipation of grad school applications for Fall 2021 entry; it seems prudent to have a public digital space with all my necessary info (that doesn't sacrifice my privacy) to share with potential programs.

2. I'm a writer (as you've likely gathered). Most of my work tends towards theatre criticism, for which I'm lucky to have consistent platforms thanks to Capital Critics Circle and The Theatre Times.

I like to write other things, too, though. I like playing with form, tone, musicality - intersecting figurative language with expository content. I'm a fan of the occasional think piece. I've been known to dabble in poetry, and have grown somewhat tired of Instagram as a platform for sharing my writing.

I hope this website can serve as a space for my not-quite-critical writing to live beyond the Miscellaneous Documents folder on my laptop.

3. I really don't like LinkedIn. It's awkward to use, aggressive in its email marketing, and downright predatory in its pushing of LinkedIn Premium. I know it's the industry standard, and I do have an account, but I'm hoping my website affords me the freedom to offer my work, experience, and contact information without needing to rely so heavily upon LinkedIn.

These are the main reasons that come to mind. COVID-19 has driven a truck through my academic, creative, and professional plans for 2020, but it's also offered me a wealth of free-ish time; I've been hoping to make a website for a while, now, and can no longer use being busy as an excuse not to do so.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and for visiting the site. I look forward to posting more as theatres and schools slooooooowly edge towards reopening in Ottawa. I can't hope for a return to "normalcy," nor do I think we should; a North American normalcy is one built on racism and exploitative capitalism, and I think we're in a position to begin to dismantle those systems at this 2020 precipice. I do hope, however, for a reimagined ecosystem of live theatre and co-presence; digital theatre has tided me over this COVID-19 schism thus far, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't miss that ephemeral feeling of being in a physical, tangible audience.

Take care,

Aly

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