We fear more regular output will result in greater heaps of trash

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Photo by Jordan Beltran on Unsplash

I suspect most writers do not make it their goal to publish content every day. We might think about it every day. Sometimes we even agonize about it. I certainly do.

Do we really need to guilt ourselves into frequent output? I’m not making a living as a writer — not yet anyway. I also have a fulfilling, and at times stressful, full-time job. For a full-time writer the prospect of publishing daily is more realistic, perhaps even necessary.

If you spend even a short time reading tips from other writers, you’ll read time-and-again how we must generate more content — daily content is prescribed to become the best writers we can be. …

If I can do it during these days of pandemic, you can too

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Photo by Olia Gozha on Unsplash

“It’s easy to quit smoking. I’ve done it hundreds of times.”

It’s a quote often credited to Mark Twain. W.C. Fields delivers a similar version of this statement regarding his quitting drinking. It’s a great quip, regardless of its origins. And it’s one I can claim myself when I think about my attempts in losing weight over the years.

What I need to make clear before getting into the action steps is that I am not an expert in the fields of nutrition, physiology, or food science. To look at me, I’m not what most people would consider overweight. Being a guy, I get it, that weight drops more quickly and with less effort than it generally does with women. …


Such behavior is completely unacceptable in a public zoo setting

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(Photo by Ana Karla Parra on Unsplash)

“This is a British zoo — not a U.S. presidential debate!” said one horrified spectator at the Lincolnshire Wildlife Park in the UK. The British zoo removed and separated five of the birds that were cursing incessantly, each attempting to out potty-mouth the other.

The five African Grey parrots, known for their abuse of, and contempt for the English language were removed from public view for telling people to f**k off, ruffling feathers, and disrespecting each other. …

Coronavirus pandemic dreams could be our brains’ response to uncertainty, stress, and anxiety

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Photo by Sasha Freemind on Unsplash

Last night I dreamed that I was sitting in some type of restaurant or cafe. I recall the shiny, lacquered tables, dim lighting, and streamlined decor. I don’t recall what I was eating, just that whatever I had was comforting.

I was sitting at a window facing out to the street. Looking out I could see much of the interior reflected in the glass. It must’ve been dusk and I could see my reflection in the low light. A few people were walking around outside.

I recognized a woman I’d once worked with but she’d left the company to pursue her own ambitions. I had not seen her for years. I liked her well enough, I just wasn’t in the mood to chat. …

If I read your story, I give no more and no less

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Photo by Alexander Dummer from Pexels

If you don’t believe me, check for yourself. Ever since I’ve been writing on Medium — going on my second year now, it’s been my practice to give every story I read 49 claps. This is my standard, regardless of the quality of your work. It could be an amazing, well-researched piece of long-form brilliance, or it could be a thoughtless, phoned-in piece of dung. It doesn’t matter. If I read your story, you are guaranteed 49 claps.

Why Not the Maximum Fifty Claps?

Honestly, I’m not certain why. I believe it’s partially in response to those stingy clappers who can only afford a single clap. What’s that about anyway? The first time somebody only clapped once for a story I posted, I felt slighted. It happens more frequently than I’d expect. This makes me wonder if some people don’t realize that you can hold down that clap button for longer than a fraction of a second. My skin is thin enough as it is. …

Help guide them on their way

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Photo by Jordan Whitt on Unsplash

In the movie Moneyball, Peter Brand gives Billy Beane a plan. This plan amounts to a series of steps that will turn his baseball team around and make Billy the hero of the story.

The plan seems counterintuitive. It means Billy must ignore the advice of his long-established coaching staff. He must use an algorithm to select fresh talent for his team. He has to start trusting the numbers. Billy has to run his team like a hedge fund manager. It’s risky but there’s hope for success. The plan becomes the bridge our hero must cross to win the day.

Sometimes the plan is so unconventional in method the hero can’t see how the process will achieve what they desire. In the movie The Karate Kid, Daniel LaRusso throws a tantrum at one point. …

Some of it is not so welcome

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Photo by Bryan Padron on Unsplash

Sheltering in place over the past several months has us appreciating the freedom of the outdoors. It’s not that we can’t get out for a walk, but there are restrictions. Many of the parks are closed and most trails or accessible outdoor areas have higher than normal traffic now. With so many people home, everyone is looking for exercise, mood-boosting sunlight, and a change of scenery.

The Hungry Heron

Our kitchen faces a private, beautifully landscaped backyard. We have a small koi pond that can be seen from the window over the kitchen sink. We had about five-thousand pounds of boulders brought in to create the water feature. There’s an easement at the back of the property. …

I discovered this cash-saving tip by mistake, but now it’s become a regular practice for me

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Photo by Sam Dan Truong on Unsplash

I’m a sucker for online marketers. And once they know you’re an easy mark, you’ll get bombarded with all kinds of can’t-pass-up offers, deals of the day, Brad’s bargains and all manner of “until gone” messaging.

These offers will come by way of email, sidebar ads, and through your feeds on social media. Sometimes it’s creepy how they’ve utilized technology and algorithm science to figure exactly how to bait your hook. But we still go for it, don’t we? Sometimes?

Will you get burned from time to time? Sure — occasionally you’ll kick yourself, falling again for that, sounds too-good-to-be-true, impulse purchase. Many times, the items purchased live up to their lofty claims. …


And if you are that hater, you might want to pass on this article

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Photo by Alex Iby on Unsplash

I’m betting there’s somebody in your family who hates mushrooms. Every family has a hater. There’s no grey area when it comes to mushroom preference. You either love them, as I and three others in my family do, or you despise them with every fiber of your being.

It’s not the same as disliking onions or green peppers, where somebody might say, “I’m not wild about them but I’ll eat them if they’re on the plate. I tolerate them. I can take ’em or leave ‘em” No, you will never hear these words from a bonified mushroom hater. NEVER! And when a hater hates, it’s stated in no uncertain terms. It’s always declared with intense conviction. …

What they need is a trusted guide

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Photo by Quino Al on Unsplash

No two lives are the same. We all have our unique stories to tell. These stories can even be broken down into separate acts. The longer you’ve lived, the more story you have to tell.

These story acts can be further broken down into chapters. There’s the chapter growing up without money. The chapter when you began to forge great relationships. The chapter when you realized that one thing you excel in. Maybe it was swimming, baseball, soccer, or some other athletic pursuit. It could be you found that you had an aptitude in math or solving puzzles.

There’s a chapter when you found your first love, left home, took that big step in your career. If we zoom into these events closer, you’ll often find there’s somebody else in your story. Somebody who nudged you along the way, who identified your strengths and nurtured growth in a particular area. In a story plot, these characters are often portrayed as mystical, mysterious, and all-knowing. In Donald Miller’s bestseller, “Building a Story Brand,” these characters are what he refers to as guides. …


Jim Farina

Serving only the freshest, organic content. Writing prepared with the best quality ingredients, easy to digest and shareable. jimfarina @att.net

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