Want A Paid Writing Gig?


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My fellow writers! I have a GEM for you! I know how we writers want to make a living writing or at least be appreciated for what we have to bring to the table, right? I came across this online paid magazine by networking right here on wordpress. I started to read other’s blogs and BOOM there it was! Yes, I am talking about this banner right here:

This is totally legit! I even signed a contract and met other writers for the magazine as well. This is a new magazine and I must say that I very excited to accept the position of a columnist! My areas of expertise will be for Bookish News and Reviews, Writer’s Life and Fashion & Beauty sections. I could not be more proud to be a part of a great magazine. If you have more questions please do hesitate to email the editor at EDITOR@CONSCIOUSTALKMAG.COM.

My Thoughts:

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If you look back on my  What’s On Your Writer’s Bucket List?  back in 2013, I stated that I wanted to write for a company. I did not specify what type of company because it could be anything. I have been a contributing writer for a few magazines, but never having my own column(s). This opportunity is so exciting for me. You have no idea. I want all of my writer friends to join in on this venture with me if you are interested and have the time.

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Procrastination


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Happy Monday! I know please do not sound so grim. It will not be that bad today. We are all going to have a good day, right? Right! I wanted to touch on procrastination. We all do it and as we do it, we wish that it was not a thing. For any writer it is hard to keep on track sometimes. We may have something going on in our lives where writing seems impossible. I have been there and I know that life happens.

How do we not procrastinate? Well, I have a couple of things that have helped me. Sometimes we have to do things that are out of our norm or things we would usually do. There will be trial and error, but figuring out what works for you.

  • Keeping A Schedule  – This can work many ways. You can keep a calendar and put different things that you write on different days. For example, on Monday, write a blog, Tuesday, write three chapters of a novel, on Wednesday work on journaling. Having a calendar can be beneficial. But, if you are like me, this does not work. It will work for a few days and then that is it.
  • Writing Daily  –  It’s a little similar to keep a schedule, but not really. Writing daily can be for the same project. If you are writing a novel or a screenplay, you may write every day until the project is finished. This can be more of a habit because on the days you do not write, you will feel weird when you have not written anything.
  • Writing Partner  – I have had many writing partners or buddies through out of writing career. They are there to hold you accountable with your writing. Your partner may suggest sprints or even put you on a writing schedule to make sure that you are keeping busy. I have an accountability partner, her name is Jennifer. She is a great friend. We met in a writing group on Facebook and have been rocking out together since. I have read her work and vice versa.
  • Writing Prompts  – I know we have those days when we are not really into our projects. It is okay. We are human and have those days at times. What works best for me is to still write by utilizing a writing prompt. Sometimes I will blog it or write in my writing journal.

These are just a few things that you can do to not procrastinate. Will you follow these examples and never procrastinate again? Of course not. I will not even follow these all the time, but it is nice to do when you are feeling like you are in a writing slump. Let’s talk in the comments, what do you do to not procrastinate?

Having A Good Writing Flow


Happy Monday

Happy Monday!

I know this day is gruesome for some, but try to keep an open mind. For those writers who are doing Camp NanoWriMo, how is it going? As for me, I just hit a little over 27k and I am loving the progress of this story. It is really coming along nicely. My total word count goal is 70k so please keep my fingers and mind in your prayers.

It is imperative to have a good writing flow once you are finish with your outline. This can be creating an awesome schedule, writing with a writing buddy or participating in sprints. Sprints are when you write for a certain amount of time by yourself or with others. They are really fun. At times the flow of writing can be so good that you forget to eat meals or even do other things that were on your to-do list. Yesterday, I started to write in the afternoon and I did that for 2 hours then took a break. Then I started back up at about 9pm until 11 and I wrote 4000 words! I surpassed my goal by more than half. I was so proud of myself.

Having a good writing flow is important, but allow yourself some time to take a break. The last thing that you want to do is suffer from burnout. Burnout to writing is like unemployment to workers. It does not mix at all. There are some people that are mood writers and like to write when they feel lead to. I used to be like that, but since I want to write for a living like Stephen King, I have to  write and read daily. Reading is just as important when you are taking a break from your writing flow. It keeps you fresh and innovative in my opinion. Whether you are writing every day or sporadically, enjoy the writing flow and let it take your story to another level.

Can You Be Your Own Support System?


Happy Thursday!

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We go through many things in our life where we need and desire support from others. But, when we are able to gain that support from our friends and loved ones, are we able to seek it in ourselves? Yes! It is called determination and motivation. Now, with my writing career, I am sure that there are MANY people who disapprove of my career path. In turn that is okay, but when you have people like that, it is time to rid of toxic waste.  In my opinion being a writer is a lonely world until your readers support your work. In my time as a writer, I have seen some great reviews and even some bad ones. I took a step back and re-assessed the bad reviews. I take into consideration what the readers have to say. My work may look great in my eyes, but the readers are the real judges.

Dream-Big

With that being said, I motivate myself often to make the next book or writing endeavor better than the last one. I wanted to make sure that my words were relatable and valid for anyone who even cracked a page or clicked to see my work. My motivation and determination for myself has to be strong because everyone does not see my dream the way that I do. Sure, you will get discouraged when rejection happens, but use that rejection for fuel to continue to work on your craft and be the best writer that you can be. One of my goals this year was to keep my blog updated and relevant. There were times where I did not wrote for months and I saw the change in that versus now to me writing on a daily basis. I appreciate your support with my blog.  You liking my blog posts makes me feel good about the posts that I will continue to have.  A year ago, I did a vision board with my previous position and I look at it every day now just to motivate and remind myself that I am destined for greatness. Now, I feel like I have to keep my work to myself in a way and not tell everyone my dreams because I will not get the support that I give myself.

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I do have a journal with goals in it. I never look at it. In my mind, I know what I achieve to do. Every time I achieve a new thing, I go back to my goals journal and see how close or far I came to achieving them. Thus far, I am on track because I am motivating myself. Currently, I am motivated and determined to finish this novel for NanoWriMo way before the end of the July. I really believe that this book is going to put me on the map. Never allow anyone to tell you that you can not or deter you from your dreams.

Are You Optimistic Enough?


Happy Monday! Let’s Be Optimistic and Make It Great!

I Can Do It

But, can we really, you know, do it? Life can get us down, but it is up to us, to keep it together. Now, I am living witness of not being optimistic the last few months. It brings me to shame to, because I’m a Sagittarius and being optimistic is one our main traits. I used to be very optimistic until life started to show me that everything that glittered was not gold. I mean, I wanted it to be gold, well, I would rather that it was. But, let’s face it, the world does not work our way, which leads me to being more optimistic about life.

We often focus on the things that happen and are not working in our lives that we forget how blessed we truly are. Not to get all religious on you, but the bible says, ” When you are grateful for little, he will bless you with more.” This has been my new approach of late, being happy where I am. I have a roof over my head and food in my mouth. Things will get better in time.

Being More Optimistic

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The term optimistic means, ” hopeful and feeling confident for the future”.  Understand that you are not your circumstances or your struggle.  This also has to do with our mindset as well. Check out my post about having a positive mindset. Here are some ways that you can work on your optimism. I got some help from Wiki on how to be optimistic.
1. Recognize the good and bad in your life and examine how you’ve been affected by each. Optimism doesn’t mean you have to feel “happy” all the time. In fact, trying to force feelings of happiness during potentially traumatic experiences can be unhealthy.  Instead, attune yourself to the full range of emotions in your life, accepting that the negative as well as positive feelings are a natural part of human experience. Trying to repress a certain type of emotion can cause severe emotional distress. Not focusing more on one type of emotion than the other can actually help you become more adaptive and proactive in future unexpected situations. This will increase your ability to be optimistic and resilient in the face of uncertainty.
Negative feelings can become a conditioned habit over time. Avoid blaming yourself for negative emotions and associations. Blame is unhelpful because it doesn’t look forward to how you can grow; it looks backward at what has already happened.
Instead, focus on being mindful of when these negative emotions occur. A journal could help you do this. Write down when you experience negative feelings or thoughts, then examine their contexts and explore alternative ways of responding to them.
For example, imagine that someone cuts you off in traffic. You respond by feeling angry, honking your horn, and perhaps yelling at the driver even though s/he can’t hear you. You could write in your journal what happened, how it made you feel, and what your immediate response was. Don’t judge yourself as “right” or “wrong,” just write down what happened.
Next, take a step back and think about what you’ve written. Was your response in accordance with your values and the type of person you want to be? If not, what could you have done differently? What do you think you were really responding to? For example, perhaps you weren’t really angry at the driver; maybe you had a stressful day and allowed your stress to explode on that one person.
Look forward when you write these entries. Don’t use them just as a place to wallow in negative feelings. Think about what you can learn from the experience. What can you use to grow as a person? Can you use this experience to inform other experiences? If you encounter a similar situation next time, how might you respond in a way that is in line with your values? For example, perhaps realizing that you responded with anger because of your stressful day could help you realize that everyone makes mistakes and encourage you to feel more empathetic with other people the next time someone shows anger toward you. Having a pre-existing idea of how you want to respond to negative situations can also help you in the tough moments.

2. Practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is a key component of optimism because it encourages you to focus on acknowledging your emotions in the moment without judging them. Often, negative reactions arise when we try to struggle against our feelings, or when we allow ourselves to become so blinded by our emotions that we forget that we can control how we respond to them.  Focusing on your breathing, accepting your body and your feelings, and learning from your emotions rather than denying them can help you become comfortable with yourself, which is important when those negative emotions arise.
Mindfulness meditation has been shown by many studies to help with feelings of anxiety and depression. It can actually reprogram the way your body responds to stress.
Look for mindfulness meditation classes in your community. You can also find guided meditations online, such as at the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center[16] or BuddhaNet  (And of course, there are several great tutorials on Wikihow.)
You don’t have to commit a huge amount of time to meditation to see its effects. Just a few minutes a day can help you become more aware and accepting of your emotions.[18]

3. Identify whether your inner monologue is an optimist or a pessimist. Our inner monologue is a great indicator of whether we naturally take a positive or negative outlook on life. Pay attention to your inner monologue over the course of a day and see if any of the following forms of negative self-talk (that is, your inner monologue) are appearing regularly:
Magnifying the negative aspects of a situation and filtering out all of the positive ones.
Automatically blaming yourself for any negative situation or event.
Anticipating the worst in any given situation. The drive-through coffee shop gets your order wrong and you automatically think that the rest of your day will be a disaster.
You see things only as good or bad (also known as polarization). In your eyes, there is no middle ground.

4. Look for the positives in your life. It’s important to re-orient your inner monologue to focus on the positive aspects of both you as an individual and the world around you. Although positive thinking is only one of the steps towards becoming a true optimist, the effects of positive thinking for both your body and mind can be significant, such as:
Increased life span
Lower rates of depression
Lower levels of distress
Improved immune system
Better psychological and physical well-being
Reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease
Better coping skills during hardships and times of stress

Some of these situations I witness first hand, especially depression. But, now I have a renewed mindset and better control of knowing I can’t worry about things out of my control. Daily, it is good to speak positive affirmations and surround yourself with positive people. I hope that these tips have helped you a lot as it has for me.

Jobs For Writers


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Being a writer is hard work. There are many people will believe in your gift, and others will laugh in your face. I’m sure writers like Stephen King and J. K. Rowling were laughed at, but look at them now! I would LOVE to be on their level one day and even write for Huffington Post or a great company like it. Speaking of writing for a living, I have been applying to several writing jobs.  Now, I’ve worked as a writer before, but I am looking to do so on a full-time basis. If you read my plea for wanting a career as a writer, I was speaking for us all when I said we wanted to make it through our words. There are many jobs out there that writers can do. To name a few:

  • Content Writer
  • Staff Writer
  • Freelance Writer
  • Creative Writer
  • Fiction Writer
  • Screenwriter
  • TV Writer
  • Contributing Writer
  • Blog Writer
  • Journalist
  • Copywriter
  • Technical Writer

These are jobs that I have applied for in various companies. Let’s hope one of these turns out to be a winner. But, if not, I am still writing. My suggestion would be to ALWAYS write. The more you write, the better you will be become in your craft. But, there is one thing a writer should always do as well. That is to:

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A great writer is also a great reader. I LOVE to read as you know if you’ve been seeing my  Goodreads page, and book reviews. I watched a few interviews with Stephen King and he said that he reads all the time. It helps strengthen his writing.

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Writing is already a job within itself, but sometimes we have to get day jobs, too. I used to work full-time, go to school and STILL would write before I went to bed. Lately, I have been writing a lot of samples for the writing jobs that I have been applying for. My point is that writing should always be precedent if it’s something you plan on doing for the rest of your life. As for myself I want to be like Stephen King and just write for a living. In time I have no doubt that it won’t happen. I am going to re-read On Writing by Stephen King just to get inspiration to keep going. This journey can be a lonely road, but I will not stop climbing. If you want a writing job and to continue your own projects, keep striving. Don’t let or allow anyone to tell you differently.

Being Discouraged


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Hey readers! Happy Thursday! I know you are so excited for tomorrow and believe me, I am too. This week thus far really dragged for me. I was on the internet too much and got hardly any writing done. But, today I am back on it. I am gotten an accountability partner with my writing. I find that I work better on a schedule with someone knowing it. My accountability partners are Beth and Jennifer. I feel a weight lifted off of my shoulders now that I have them.

Discouraged

clear-your-mind-and-soul-of-negativity-step-04In my personal life I am still struggling to find a job. Well, today I applied for tons of writing jobs. I re-vamped my writing resume and now I’m hoping for the best. My goal is to work in research/writing field. Even if I’m a full-time writer of my own books that will be SO much fun and I can do research when I want. My dream is to be traditionally published. So, after I finish this next book, I will work on another project that I will get traditionally published.  But, life happens and it’s hard to stay positive. Maybe I am supposed to write for myself or work for myself. But, it’s hard to get that going when it is hard to get clients. I will keep trying. When you are discouraged just take a deep breath and keep trying to fulfill your dreams.

 

Holding Yourself Accountable


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Happy Hump day!

I hope that all is well and your Wednesday is going great! It is still the new year, in fact it is the second month in a new year so don’t feel bad about your resolutions not being met just yet. There is still time. There are 11 months left in the year. I’ve been thinking about reflecting on my life ( as usual) and I want to talk about accountability. Lately, I have really figured out what the word means and how it shapes my life. I was sitting in my bed writing and it just hit me like a ton of bricks. I never finish things because I don’t hold myself accountable. Whoa! Now before you trip, I do get things done, but it is usually out of whack or I put things on hold that need to be done. I had to hold myself account for my life, actions and even thinking. In my post  What a Sunday! I was in a bad space and just drained with the days events. But, I read a post or picture that my cousin posted and it said:

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I read this and was like heck yeah! Why am I putting myself through stress of things that are out of my control? This is something that is a constant battle with me and my accountability with life. It’s easy to be sad or a little envious at other people’s success when they have achieved the goals that you want to like marriage and being a parent. I long to have the same things, but one thing I learned is that everything that glitters isn’t gold. Just because it appears to be great, does not mean that it is. But, I recently learned and was told to ” stay in my lane”. I can only focus on what I am doing with my life. My focus is to pay attention to only what I am doing and enjoy the process of my life. I have many things to be thankful for like being a great writer, almost finishing school and working on some writing projects that can take my writing to the next level. It seems that the more you center yourself and put you first, the more success will come to you. There has been plenty of times when I did things for other people without making sure I was okay. Mainly for me, this was an issue financially. When I was good with money I would let fiends and family borrow if they asked. No was not in my vocabulary, but now it is. I have to say no. I can’t get to my goals where I want to be, If I am always doing for other people or allowing them to use me. My friend told me recently that people only do what you allow.  I learned this lesson a lot with dating recently. Man, never again!

 

Thoughts


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Happy Tuesday! I hope all is well. Just had a few things on my mind that I wanted advice on. I appreciate everyone that comes by and reads my blog, so I think of you guys as my online family. Anyway, I had a post a few times about getting organized and staying on track. My own methods have not helped one bit!

Procrastination

Original image courtesy of Flickr Creatinve Commons, courtesy of Ali Samieivafa.

This is my ugly cousin who always shows up. No matter what I want to do or have plans on doing. I will watch youtube, fiddle on the internet or Facebook. It’s crazy. I think about if I’m ADD all the time. Don’t get me wrong, I get things done, I just do it on my own time. I’m wondering maybe planning doesn’t work for me?

Organized Chaos

My office area is a mess, but I know where everything is, lol. Can anyone relate to this? Of course you can! I’ve read articles where they state ” messy” people are the ones that are the most intelligent. I heard that Albert Einstein had a messy work space and look what he became to be. Don’t get me wrong, I like for this to be neat, but I like my own area and space. I could not live with someone who was OCD. They’d hate me. My mother is OCD (hasn’t been diagnosed), and she hates my messes around my apartment.  I was thinking about things that I can do to not procrastinate so much. It’s crazy how technology takes up so much of our time. Any ideas?

Was 2016 A Hit or Miss?


Man oh man!

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You know? This year has been a struggle, but I have learned so many lessons from it. There were more misses then hits, but that’s okay. This year has taught me so much about myself and what I deserve in life. In order to grow and move forward you must have to know where you have been to get to where you are going. That last sentence might sound like gibberish, but here me out. This year I have felt all over the place with no direction in all aspects of my life.

Writing

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For 2016, you would think that I was bi-polar when it came to my writing. I was so up and down about the craft. One minute I was enthused about finishing a project and then the next I made excuses for why I wasn’t writing. I had things to say like life got in the way, or I’m focusing on school or getting a job. Don’t get me wrong, these are somewhat valid reasons, but if writing is my life I need to make time to do everyday. However, I did participate in Nano and finished. This experience was a rewarding one because I never finished Nano. I even published the book!

Blogging

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Let’s face it. This blog took a major back seat this year. I feel so bad for it too. My YouTube channel was booming and I lost this blog. It is good to be back and have some perspective of what  want to do for 2017. I think it was hard to figure out what to blog about. I am not just a writer or student, but I also love to read as well. I will consider this my website more so than a blog even though I will still post. I want to sincerely apologize to all of my followers for my inconsistency.

 

Love

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Shall we even go there? Man, this area of my life is so misconstrued it’s not even funny, lol. You guys know that I have tried to have relationships and it was just not successful. The last guy was a fluke, just like the ones before him. I tried online dating and it is just unsuccessful for me at the time. There are two people that I know who have met their husbands on online dating sites. what I am finding is that I am not meeting real, mature men. The ones that I am meeting are very immature, some even slow and others just not what I want. When men become men, they should put a way all childish things. If you are over 30 years old and the first thing you want to do is come to a woman’s house and not even attempt to court her, GET YOUR LIFE.  I am so over it, lol. Yet, I have hope that the right man will come around sooner rather than later.

Reading

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I am so happy.  I read a lot this year and even completed my Goodreads reading challenge! My challenge had 30 books, but I surpassed that and read 50. There were so many new authors and books that I’ve read. Check it out.

 

School

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This battle is an ongoing one. Classes are going well and I am passing every one that I take.   However, I have hit my max with loans. What does that mean? It means that I have no money for school. I can qualify for a GradPlus loan, but there are somethings on my credit that need to be paid before I can do it. I still have hope because I am 4 classes away from starting my dissertation. I will finish!

No matter what happens next I will continue to give it my all. I will not give up and keep the faith because I know that God will prevail. He knows my heart and my desires. I look forward to what’s ahead. Bring it on 2017! I will not have more hits then misses in the new year.