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Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Visible, Undiagnosed Malady

by Rocky Wilson

Sit in on a meeting of mentally ill individuals, say those diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and a common theme from such folk, often indistinguishable from the “norm” once outside the meeting, is how they get no respect.

Though admittedly treated better than in past years, the mentally ill, in closed groups, often say, “Why can’t others look at us like people with diabetes or cancer instead of dipping their opinions of us to a lower level?”

But what about those with visible, undiagnosed maladies, such as men created by God with no butt?

* It doesn’t take long for men built in such a manner to find solace by cinching leather belts uncomfortably tight and, whenever possible, avoid the sport of bowling and the activity of taking photographs along sidelines at high school football games.

* Stomach pains and bruises often can be eliminated by loosening one’s leather belt, but that defeats the purpose of cinching it tight in the first place.

* Suspenders, if one can overcome the issue of vanity or cover the suspenders with a vest or jacket (admittedly a challenge on hot days,) can provide a viable option.

* Still, if one carries any more than minimal weight in their pants pockets, suspenders, over time, can tax shoulder muscles, especially those of the elderly.

* Possibly the best alternative for the butt-less man wanting to confront his deformity is to purchase and use a wide, stretch belt. It might take time to properly adjust the tension on the new belt, but the joy it can bring a man having fought the butt-less plague his entire life can be huge.

Don’t misunderstand, the introduction regarding the mentally ill wasn’t meant to draw parallels between that portion of society and those designed without butts. Instead, it was a journalistic trick to instruct the reader that everything is “fair game” when it comes to the Internet; even slanted humor with happy endings.
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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Small Towns and Churches

by Rocky Wilson

Small towns and churches can have a lot in common. The social benefits of interacting with friends and peers from each environment have the potential to bond people together like nothing else.

Whether individuals are uniting their energies to develop a better small-school football team or cheerleading squad, or maybe playing drums to back up the church worship team, the received positive benefits can be awesome.

Possibly the key to whether small town and church experiences are pleasurable, certainly not givens, is one’s attitude. If you believe each day is an opportunity to share your best with the world, it will happen in small towns, churches, and elsewhere. If your thoughts are self-centered, long-lasting hope may be paled by a bleak future.

Ways to enhance a small-town experience:

* Smile

* Don’t be hesitant to express interest in the lives of others

* Honor, with discernment, thoughts spoken for your ears

* Avoid spreading gossip

* Practice godly love to the unlovable

Ways to enhance your church experience:

* Know your Bible, and practice its precepts

* Volunteer

* Let others know you care about them, their families, and their interests

* Be kind and gentle, yet strong in faith

* Pray, pray, pray
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Monday, August 23, 2010

Writing Vs. Marketing

As a child, my goal in life was to become a published author. Once I achieved that goal in early 2009 when my first novel, Sharene Death: A Prerequisite for Life was published, I realized something was missing.

For I then discovered my aspirations for my craft didn’t end there, but that I wanted people to buy and read Sharene and subsequent books I’ve written, published, and plan to publish; including An Isle of Fancy (2010) and Treat Softly, which should be released soon.

Marketing lessons I’ve learned include:

1) Writing an excellent book is not enough. Sharene won a Readers View 2010 award in their Spirituality/Inspiration category, but is not well read.

2) With so much competition for bookstore space, few writers beyond publishing company promoted authors John Grisham and Dan Brown are guaranteed in advance that new books will sell.

3) There are many Internet companies with great sounding names lined up to take one’s money with a promise to sell books for them. Be leery, as I learned the hard way.

4) An excellent resource to check the validity of many in the editing, publishing, and books promotions arena is the Web site

5) For me, throwing a bunch of money into a pot so others will do the marketing for me hasn’t worked. Sales are far more important to me than to marketing “experts.”

6) Be patient, and don’t be afraid to launch slowly, even cautiously into the marketing arena where finding an honest, affordably ally might be a laborious task.

7) Take extensive notes, including contact information (preferably electronically,) about anyone who buys your book. Hopefully an ever-growing list, this should provide you with a core list of supporters when your next book is released.
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