No Minor Issue Friday, Oct 14 2016 

Advances in technology has created opportunities for people like me to sustain a reasonable living while in between jobs or as a new career.  It has also provided opportunities of freedom by provid…

Source: No Minor Issue

Dreams realized Wednesday, Dec 30 2015 

One of my dreams was realized in 2015. I completed my first novella called Courting Love. I took the opinions of other writers into account when I edited it and then formatted it for ebook distribution befor finally uploading it for mass distribution on several ebook platforms through Smashwords.

This was a dream I had in my 20s that took nearly 30 years to realized as life had a way of deterring my path.  In addition to this accomplishment, I also walked the stage to receive my Masters degree in business management.

I encourage all who have dreams to take the bull by the horns and make them happen.  With the Internet as a tool, do your research and find a way to work on realizing your dreams.  I am proof positive that it is never too late to make it happen.

Please take a moment and share your major 2015 accomplishments. You could be an inspiration to others looking for the courage to step outside thier box and try something new.

Reflections of 2015 Monday, Dec 28 2015 

from the blog www.stuckincustoms.com

The end of 2015 is near and for the last couple of days, I have been reflecting on what this year has been for me both professionally and personally.  I started off the year with the expectation that there was going to be some changes and I was not disappointed.

Professionally, I changed jobs to further a career in public relations. The offer started with an email from a local healthcare public relations company who saw my profile on LinkedIn and reached out to me.  During this journey, there has been some challenges but it has been a worthy experience.  As I round out this year, I have embarked on my writing career developing articles on green living for Examiner.com.  My initial article, Drought stricken Los  Angeles looks at use of storm runoff and it has gone pretty well in the first 48 hours and my income will reflect a positive change in lifestyle as I grow as a writer.

Personally, there have been a couple of health issues with myself and my youngest child.  We have both come out on the other side doing better and feeling stronger. It is important that you always seek medical assistance as soon as you feel off in any way.

Going into 2016, there are no resolutions just the commitment to further grow professionally and work on me as a person as I head into the year with a soon-to-be high school graduate and a goal to make a difference using the written word.  Additionally, I encourage everyone to go outside of your comfort zone and do something you have always wanted to do to enrich your life and make a difference to others.

What happened to my shiny new penny? Friday, Oct 30 2015 

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It was just a few short months ago that I this really cool shiny penny dropped into my life.  I was so excited that I cherished not only this new penny but all the others that came before it. Cooper is supposed to take quite a bit of time to tarnish, however, my shiny new penny seemed to lose its luster unusually fast. My precious shiny penny has rusted to the point of near non-recognition. How can that be? I was planning on fully enjoying it for years to come. When did it become a bad penny? So how do I get my penny back to its original or near original luster?  Can I clean up this penny? The opportunity is there, I just have to decide which tools to use and make my penny shine again. It will take some finessing but a little elbow grease and time but I will spit shine it until I see the light beaming off of it again.

So the journey begins, do I try to save it or find a new one because the tarnish refuses to go away?  We will soon find out.

30 Days, 50,000 Words….. Reaching for the Stars Saturday, Oct 24 2015 

Last year I discovered a website where once a year during the month of November writers are challenged to create a 50,000+ word novel in 30 days.  Unfortunately, it was mid November, too late for me to truly participate while working a 9-5 and raising a high schooler so I wait and before I know it, November is here. During the past 11 months I completed my first book and self published it, started two other writing projects that have stalled and changed jobs. The high schooler is now a senior and I see our lives already changing.

The good news is I have a story that I have been toying with since completing my last one.  The goal is not only to complete the story in 30 days, but to complete my other projects that have stalled.  I plan to go into 2016 with at least two completed projects an at least two others started.  It will take some discipline and with the encouragement from friends and family, I am confident I will succeed.

Kayla’s Star is the story of a young widower who throws herself into her children, work and volunteer efforts.   Dating is a concept she does not see in her future. She never saw it coming when the new volunteer turned up as her new trainee at the nonprofit she gives her time to.  Her rival volunteer immediately latches onto the new guy but he only has eyes for Kayla. As her resolve weakens, his true identity threatens their future.

I look forward to sharing this story as I develop the characters and story.

What Is Happening????? Wednesday, Feb 25 2015 

Monday through Friday, I go to this tall building five minutes from my front door and spend 8 hours earning a paycheck.  However, this story is not about my day job but about the fact that our youth are not learning how to be respectful.  So what brought this on today?  There is this young lady who I presume is in her 20s.  I see her most mornings coming in just a few minutes past 8:00am.  She is always walking at a frantic pace.  Many times she passes me and I can feel the back wind from her hastened pace.  This morning, like on a couple of other mornings, she breezed past me and rushed to the elevator bank.  I entered the lobby just as the elevator arrived.  The young lady rushed onto the elevator and I know she saw me as I picked up my pace to beat the door closing.  I saw her hand reach for the two buttons used to either open or close the doors.  No, she did not push the open door button, but the other one just as my arm reached between the doors to force them to reopen.  This is not the first time something like this has happened.  On a previous occasion, as I was approaching the elevator doors that were opening right in front of me, she suddenly rushed past me and jumped in knocking into me.  For that she had no choice but to apologize because she nearly knocked me over trying to get on the elevator.  This morning, I was really pissed off because I saw her deliberately try and close the doors before I could get on the elevator and made no attempt to help me as I worked the door back open.

The problem is she is not the only one.  There used to be a young man, also in his 20s, how worked on the same floor as me.  I would run into him at the elevators from time-to-time.  He was pretty much the same way, he would jump on the elevator, would not hold the door for me and one time let the glass outer door hit me.  He never even looked back as I gasped aloud.  The first time I saw him, I thought he was good looking and told my daughter she should come up to the office and randomly run into him, strike up a conversation, you know, get her flirt on.  Then within a week I retracted that statement.

As parents, we need to teach our children to be respectful.  Today’s homes have two working parents or single parents who have to work but we still have to instill in them the importance of treating our fellow man well.  Make them put down the electronic devices and help them be the best people they can be.

Vicarious Second Chances Saturday, Jan 31 2015 

Second chances are usually taken lightly.  You have a near miss, you are thankful for another day and a second chance.  However, within a few days, weeks, months, you are back to your old routine taking every day for granted as you did before.  So what do second chances really mean to you?

November 2014, a friend nearly lost his life to a blood clot and an initial misdiagnosis. Fortunately, he was finally properly diagnosed and is doing much better.  I feel that his second chance will be true and he will take all measures to make the changes needed to reach his goals.  I will do my best to be a part of that journey.

My friend, Gwen Bolden, was not as lucky.  She was killed on January 25, 2015 in a car crash that also took the life of her friend who was driving.  Gwen has been a part of my life off and on, more recently on, for the better part of 25 years.  She and I were, as they say, thick as thieves. I am so blessed that we had a chance to reconnect a few years ago and continued to stay in touch up until the end. Although our friendship was not the same as it was all those years ago, I am still torn by her death.  As I write this, I cannot help the tears I shed for the lost years, the amazing memories of the past and the amazing person she was.  I will miss her smile that greeted me every time we saw each other.  In recent years, when we were together she would tell anyone who was listening that we have been friends for over 20 years which is what she did the last time I saw her.

I have chosen to live my second chance vicariously in celebration of my friend who is on the mend and to honor my friend who I will never see again in this life.  It is also in honor of those who have been and are having a hard time. In honor of those who have passed on that I was not close to but were a part of my life at one time or another.  I don’t take this lightly as each day I will remember that the next minute, hour, day is not promised to us.  My second chance is now. I will not wait for my body to get sick or narrowly miss the reaper because of some accident at home, work or in the streets.  My second chance is now!  When is yours?

Why, Why, Why… Tuesday, Nov 25 2014 

I don’t ask this of the Grand Jury who made the unfortunate decision not to take the officer to trial, but of the people who reacted after the news broke. I am disappointed that we, as a people, have not learned the lessons of the past. In what universe is vandalism a way to bring about change? I was watching the news and there was one young girl hitting a window with a bat. She seemed to be doing it just because. She did not seem to want to enter the business but was doing it because that was expected? I am not sure what her purpose was.

“Peacefully protest, I get and support that. Destroying your community? What change does that affect? It serves no purpose but to further validate the perception that we are not worth the justices we seek.” These are the words I posted on Facebook when I woke this morning to find that people in Ferguson were burning down their community and creating chaos. Obviously, many of these people use situations like this, not as a form of support, but to act under the cover of protest to steal and destroy. Maybe if these people, who are mad at the world for their lot in life, would use their anger constructively not destructively to not become victims, we could reduce the number of shootings of African Americas and keep more of our young men and women out of jail. Image the things we could do with that energy, to build something great.

We scream that we want to be treated as law abiding citizens but then when we don’t like what happens, we behave as criminals.  If you really want to take a match to something, light a candle and pray.

Want to affect change in the perception? Volunteer at a local food bank. Tutor a student who is struggling in school. Get a job, any job. Start a sports program to help get at-risk kids off the street. Go back to school and further your education. Become a business person, doctor, or an attorney. Never been great at school?  No problem, seek help to change that or find another way to be an agent of change. Find a way to bring positive change to you and your community.

Love to entertain?  Write a script or a book that helps shed a positive light. Love music?  Write a song.  With today’s technology, there is no end to the information offered to anyone who really wants to change attitudes.

The opportunities to change the way you are treated and perceived are endless.  Take the time to be a positive role model.  Don’t depend on celebrities to do this for you as there are not enough of them to truly make the difference we need to become the pillars of community we need and deserve.

As we head into the holidays, take the time to buy a book and give it to a child. Share your holiday meals with a family in need. Volunteer at a shelter. Find a way to help an at-risk youth by becoming a Big Brother or Big Sister.  Is there a boys and girls club you can go to and give your time?

Lastly, it takes a LOT of energy to be so angry. Imagine what you can do when you turn that angry energy into positive change. That effort could not only change your immediate situation, your community, but the world.

Okay, off my soapbox.  I just needed to get this off my chest.

The End…. Wednesday, Oct 15 2014 

It has been a long road to get to this place.  The final word of the first draft has been written and now it is time to move on to the next phase.  I have heard how authors invest a part of themselves in their characters.  I know understand it.  For me, I needed to feel what my characters were feeling.  If it felt disconnected, I re-wrote it, changed it, moved it, or just deleted it.

Writing is a process that I have found to be relaxing after a hard day at work.  It takes me to a place of wonder to see where my words will go as I type.  For me, it is building a story as the story unfolds at each word. Once the flow starts, I find myself writing until I force myself to stop, usually around 3:00am when I know I have to get up three hours later to go to work.

I am excited to share my vision with the world.  Courting Love is a dramatic story that includes attempted murder and relationships that endure ups and downs.  More to come soon.

Walking By Faith by Donald B. Welch Thursday, May 29 2014 

Walking By Faith by Donald B. Welch.

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