Friday, April 18, 2014

Secret Society Status

I've joined a secret society. Ok, maybe it's not quite secret. No fancy handshakes, no passwords...although that'd be cool! Actually, it's not secret at all. The SOTGC Society is officially launching in San Diego on June 5th with a beautiful event to kick things off. Best part is - you're invited!

The online community that founder Marney Reid has built will be taking on a physical presence providing business women a chance to connect and form meaningful relationships. 

The launch event will have guest speakers, food, wine, prizes and a whole lot of mingling going on. Attendees will have a chance to learn more about the benefits of the society, in addition to being among the first able to sign up to be a member. 

Tickets are now on sale for the event which will be held at the posh University Club Atop Symphony Towers. You can snag your spot by clicking here.

Stay tuned for more details! Hope to see you there!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Agoraphobe, Er, Fab!

Just 36 more books to go for my 50/50 Challenge!

Book #14:

Agorafabulous!: Dispatches from My BedroomAgorafabulous!: Dispatches from My Bedroom by Sara Benincasa

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It's rare that you read about agoraphobia and someone's experience with it. Mixing such a serious topic with the author's comedic voice really made the book enjoyable and made the stories seem to come to life.

I like how the book was broken up with different stories spanning over years at a time rather than one continuous story without any breaks. Her parents were incredible and I particularly liked when they went "overboard" when helping her grocery shop just to help her.

Her stint at the spiritual retreat was one of my favorite parts because it was fascinating, if not a bit scary. I thought it was going to take a darker turn, but I'm glad it didn't.

The ending was great without having that "and we all lived happily ever after" feel. The author was genuine throughout the book and I liked her comedic inserts. It's a quick, fun read.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Do You Have a Website? Why Yes, Yes I Do -

I thought it'd be helpful to have a website to at least have a central online presence for the times when someone asks, "Do you have a website?" 

For a long time, I just had the domain, but no site. Then, I changed the website to what I thought was a simple, chic, gray and white format. I am a writer, not a designer. I wasn't going to overwhelm with a lot of banner design and CSS business that frankly, I know nothing about.

I wanted a website that sums up who I am, what I do and how you can contact me. I don't like to be segmented into one box, as you might remember, so I didn't want a cold price list of my services and how much they cost. Each project is different.

HOWEVER, despite my modern and simplistic original web design, I had more than one person claim my website to be "too blah." Two people said this, in fact, in not so many words. After scoffing at this criticism, I did have to ask myself, do I want my creativity to be represented all in gray? I am not sophisticate extraordinaire. I am not gray and white silk pantsuit chic.

I am an adventurous explorer and I wanted to be reflected online as such. May I present the brand new:!

As a perfectionist, the website will always be a work in progress but the basics are there and most importantly, I love it. So, I'm going to have this moment.

I think it's important to realize that you can have both sides of the writing coin. Yes, you can have a perfectly professional work ethic that meets the goals your clients have in mind. 

You can also embrace your creative side that ignites everything you do whether it is writing copy for a business, networking at an event, or just jotting down some notes on a sticky pad to be referenced later and potentially turned into something great. 

No one can tell you what kind of writer you're going to be. For me, I just want to be a memorable one. A great one. The best.

I want my writing to help people achieve their goals and I want it to lead me to new stories, exotic travels, a fantastically wild life. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Join Me on Goodreads!

Several friends from the book club I belong to suggested using Goodreads to organize and review the books I read. I was hesitant at first, not sure why, but decided to bite the bullet.

I've been on Goodreads since 2011, but I haven't really been active on the site at all. Until now. My first step into organized book reviews means that my reviews can now be beautifully inserted into my blog by the power of HTML. 

Yes, the reviews will still be a little scattered, but hopefully it gives you a better idea of what I think about the books I'm reading. Now, if they only gave you a free personal pan pizza when you reached your goals...

Cartwheel is Book #13 on my 2014 50/50 Challenge. What's on your virtual bookshelf? 

CartwheelCartwheel by Jennifer duBois

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The book is loosely based on the Amanda Knox story, so the fictional details the author provides gives the reader an "inside look" into what occurred leading up to the events rather than focusing on the trial itself.

Although the story centers around Lily and Katy, two students studying abroad in Buenos Aires, the most interesting character of the book is Sebastien. First, he annoyed me with his pompous dialect, but then it started to grow on me and turn out to be kind of funny and witty. As I read more of his character, I visualized Ryan Phillippe as Sebastian in the movie "Cruel Intentions."

I felt his character kept the book in motion. Otherwise, the book felt a bit draining and flat at times. Since I knew bits and pieces of the Amanda Knox story, I was hoping for more of a twist of events on the story.

I liked that the author chose the title "Cartwheel" due to such a significant event in the real Amanda Knox story and to this one as well.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Your 90-Day Trial Period Is O-V-E-R

Here's hoping...

I've officially made it through my 90-day trial period of being self-employed and I currently am still able to pay my rent. Success!

That, of course, does not come with a few bumps along the way. Being self-employed kind of feels like outpacing everyone by a few steps. One day a steady client could no longer need your services for a reason that has nothing to do with you (as just happened to me!) which causes panic to quickly take over your body and unsteady breathing to occur. Then, the next day a new client can hire you (as just happened to me, as well!) and balance is restored. You have to be ready to take the hits by always, quite simply, working your ass off.

The next thing I'm about to say is so horribly cliche, but I have to say it: 

Everything. Happens. For. A. Reason.

If you can't take a loss and look at the bigger picture of what that might mean in terms of new possibilities, then you might as well wave the white flag right now. Don't be fooled by my Instagram photos of coffee shop work days and sunshine breaks by the bay. 

It's a GRIND. 

In the past 90 days I have made more valuable work connections than I have in the past year or even the year before that. I have worked longer hours with a new set of challenges every day.

I have recently started contributing to Stilettos on the Glass Ceiling which is all about positivity, empowerment, and carries a palpable sense of forward movement. Their launch event will be in San Diego on June 5th and you can read my contributions every other week by clicking here.

I feel like I need a star chart so that for every setback there is, I can look at my star chart and remember what good has happened, too. There's simply no time for this kind of (slightly self-absorbed) reflection. During the rough times, it's more like a feeling of survival. Do what needs to be done to earn another day.

Susan Miller is the astrologer for Elle Magazine and I believe her horoscopes. I mean as much as you believe horoscopes. She has a website - - which I check religiously every month to see what she has forecast for me. For April, she said that "if self-employed, you will be able to find new clients." 

You wouldn't lie to me, would you, Susan Miller?!

My 90-day trial period is over and I am full fledged committed to this. This writing life...

I coulda gave up then but then again I couldn't have 'cause I've traveled all this way for something. - On Top of the World, Imagine Dragons