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Moving to Chicago is a tough transition. At least in college we had freshman orientation — for all the awkwardness, it was a way to get started settling in. Starting a career in the city means setting out on our own and navigating a thousand questions. Our goal is to raise some of those questions together as a way to come together.

That’s where this social media series comes in. Asking, “Am I the only one?” is a way to build some solidarity online — to feel less alone as we find our way in Chicago. We’d love to include your voice in this series! If you’re up for it, contributing is really simple. 

First, decide if you’d like to submit a short selfie-style video, or a written response that will be turned into an anonymous social media graphic. Does your story have a strong visual element? Then nab an informal video. Does it articulate an odd feeling or a life question or something funny you’ve noticed? Perhaps writing would work best.

Second, as you structure your experience to share it with our audience, a simple progression might help. Consider composing your thoughts in three parts:

So this happened to me/I noticed that: _______.

Which makes me wonder/feel:_______.

Am I the only one? Or does anyone else _______. 

WRITTEN SUBMISSION

Written submissions will be published anonymously, so just fill in the three boxes below with your experience. These will be shared via a simple graphic on Instagram, so please keep the writing in each box to a maximum of 2 sentences.

VIDEO SUBMISSION

We can offer $50 for a short-form video contribution that we can use @GrottoChicago. Some guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Film a selfie-video of yourself explaining your predicament to the screen. We want to see your face and hear your voice — make eye contact with your phone. Keep your explanation under 2 minutes.
  • Please film with your phone vertically.
  • Think about the three-part formulation above, and be sure to include yourself asking, “Am I the only one?” at some point.
  • Setting: You could be at home, walking down the road, standing on a street corner, sitting on a train, hanging at a friend’s place, eating in a restaurant, etc. If this takes multiple attempts — that’s normal! Feel free to send them all along.
  • Film some extra shots of what your experience entails — anything to help visualize or illustrate your story. Multiple angles on the same scene are welcome. It’s fine to send along a number of clips — don’t worry about getting everything in one take.
  • Submit your video clips by uploading to this drive.
  • Email us to initiate paperwork for payment: chicago@grottonetwork.com 

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