Online Journalism Portfolio/ College Essays and Odyssey Online Articles!

Besides publish books I’m going to VCU to study Print/Online Journalism, and this is the page that will have all my journalism Articles.

This semester I’ll be writing for Capital News Service, and they report on the General Assembly and events around the Capitol.

Here are links to my clips:

Quiz on Virginia’s Emblems

http://wtkr.com/2017/04/13/how-well-do-you-know-virginias-official-emblems/

An article I did on a bill that will allow blaze pink as a substitute for blaze orange during hunting season.

Some female hunters have sights set on pink camo

A law that will allow concession stands to sell cans of beer.

Law that will allow an original metal can

Schools can’t start before labor day the infamous Kings Dominion Law

School Calendar Law

An article I did with Jessica Nolte another Capital New Service Reporter about dueling gun rallies.

Dueling Gun Rallies

This is the blaze pink article when it first came out, and before it became a law.

Blaze Pink is the new Orange

The poll I went to that reported college prepares people for jobs.

Poll for College

Another poll I went to about workforce training.

Workforce training poll

The third poll I went to that said to treat Heroin users and don’t drug them.

Treat, don’t jail drug users

The fourth poll article that said college is more effective then high school.

College is more effective

An article I did on the Trump travel ban, and Virginia General Mark Herring vows to fight it.

Trump Travel Ban

Here is a link to my resume and clips in a pdf format:

My resume and portfolio link

For the last project for this semester I did a mini-project with Amelia Heymann one of my classmates for Capital News Service, and it was about the rise in alcohol sales for the ABC Store. Here are the links:

Here are the links and it was the most fun project to date so far:

Richmond ABC store sold nearly $7 million worth of liquor

http://altdaily.com/drink-up-vb-top-3-grossing-abc-stores-in-virginia-all-at-the-beach/

Quite a bit, and then I’ll be taking iPad Journals during the Fall, and I’ll post them here:

Story 1: http://wtvr.com/2017/11/06/will-money-decide-the-virginia-governors-race/

Story 2: http://wtvr.com/2017/10/20/northam-supporters-pack-convention-center-to-see-obama/

Story 3: http://wtvr.com/2017/11/07/registrars-on-election-day/

Story 4: http://wtvr.com/2017/11/07/central-virginia-voters-tell-us-who-they-voted-for-and-why/

 

Here is an article I did along with another journalism student, and it was published in The Commonwealth Times.

IMG_1506

Odyssey Online Articles Together!

10 Gift Ideas For The Writer In Your Life

Pens, paper and journals are some of the many things the writer in your life needs!

I don’t know about you, but I find it hard to decide what to get people as a gift for Christmas. I know what to give the writer in your life though. Here are ten things to give to writers for Christmas!

  1. Pens since they need them to write get them red and black mainly. 
  2. Journals since they use them to write in their thoughts, story ideas, and even works in progress.
  3. Tabs or post it notes since they use them to go through their works in progress to take notes on.
  4. A USB drive so they can back up all their work.
  5. Amazon gift card so they can buy new books. A gift card for any bookstore really…
  6. Starbucks giftcard so they can get their favorite coffee while writing their favorite books.
  7. Office supply shop gift cards so they can pick up their favorite supplies for writing.
  8. ABC store gift card so they can finish their novel, and celebrate it. Or even drink it when they are stuck.
  9. Book related jewelry so they can proclaim their love for books. 
  10. Bookends to keep their books/journals organized.

There are way more ideas for the writer in your life, and if they are published buying their book and reviewing it can be a great way to give them a gift too!

10 Tips To Survive Working Retail During The Holidays

Working retail during the holidays can be stressful and crazy!

It’s that time of year again for retail workers, and the stores are getting busy with people buying gifts for family and friends. It’s not easy though, and it seems to get hectic around this time too. Here are ten tips for retail workers to survive the holidays!

1.Prepare for nasty customers taking it out on you since you ran out of their favorite item. Don’t take it personal though, and let it roll off you. 

  1. Prepare for long lines and short handedness on the floor, and just think it’s not your fault either. You will be driven crazy but let it all go.
  2. After the shift forget about work since it means you no longer have to be stressed after you clock out.
  3. Get a hobby to use for after work and on your days off to avoid getting overstressed.
  4. Binge watch television shows or movies to unwind after work since it can be stressful, and even do it on your day off to relax.
  5. Don’t let managers get you down or supervisors because when they get stressed they will take it out on you. Don’t take it personal. 
  6. Hang out with friends and family, and even vent to them to talk about stupid customer stories. Laughing about it with them.
  7. Prepare to clean up messes, and put up stuff customers don’t want leaving items in random spaces.
  8. Don’t take their rude attitudes personal since half of them are probably over stressed or grouchy for dumb reasons.
  9. Take a drink, play a game or read a book to celebrate the end of a long retail holiday season. 

All of these tips can help you survive retail during the holiday season, and you’ll have funny stories to tell friends and family!

10 Tips On How To Be A Good Customer

Holidays are Hell for sales people and you should be a nice customer!

It’s that time of year again, and the holidays are upon us. I work retail during the weekends, and it’s chaotic. Merchandise are all over the floor, and people are mad that their favorite item is not in stock. It’s crazy, and here are ten tips on being a good customer so people like me can make it through the holidays safely. 

1.Be polite to me since I am human after all, and manners can go a long way. 

  1. Don’t yell at me if your item is out of stock since it’s not my fault. 
  2. Shop early so you aren’t doing stuff at the last minute.
  3. Clean up after yourself when you are done since it’s the right thing to do. At least be considerate of other shoppers. 
  4. Don’t yell at me if the machine goes down since it happens, and it’s not my fault. 
  5. Have your form of payment ready especially when there is a long line.
  6. Treat the staff like they are people and don’t ignore them if they say hi back. 
  7. Be patient when waiting in a long line, and don’t take it out on the person behind the register.
  8. If the store is busy then be patient when waiting for assistance. 
  9. Above all be nice since they are doing all they can especially if they are short staffed. 

The holidays can be horrible so follow these tips to be a good customer. Clean up after yourself, have your payment ready, and above all be patient.

Life As A Student Journalist Is Exciting

It’s about finding a community, and helping with covering election day!

Yesterday was the Virginia Gubernatorial race, and it was different for me since besides voting I was interviewing people on the issues that mattered to them. It was interesting approaching people near the front, and some were ignoring me. There were a lot of people voting and coming in an out. But enough people were interviewed so that story was put together. 

So it was off to Starbucks to write the story, and that meant going through footage, and choosing the best quotes. Sentences were cut and added until the story was good enough to be sent off. And it wasn’t just me since two reporters were assigned to polling stations. 

So as a class, we posted the story of all the different interviews of the voters. It was a fun day since there were people from all over voting. It was full of people, and we were next to campaign people and we got to explain to them about the class. 

I’m with the iPad Journal project for VCU, and the class is called Mobile and Social Media Journalism. You get an iPad reporting kit, and you use it to interview people. We get to pitch story ideas and go out in the field so to speak. 

If they are publishable they go on the CBS 6 website. It’s a fun experience and you use iMovie to edit videos. We did a total of 4 stories and it all leads up to Election day, and after the story is turned in we got a choice to cover election parties or go work in the newsroom. I didn’t care for parties so I went to work in the newsroom.

After the article is turned in we had time off, and then we had to go to CBS 6 by 6:45, and that was awesome since I got my own desk. It was cool being a part of the team. I was basically tracking election results, and putting it into a computer. 

I had to refresh it constantly as the precincts reported their results. They even fed us pizza. It was cool hearing everyone track the election results, and I even talked to a few reporters on what it was like. It’s one of the reasons why I’m a journalist. I loved seeing people in my field. 

Yep, there were times when the results slowed, but I used it to look around at all the working journalists. I would totally do it all over again if I could. I had a blast, and this class was fun to be a part of. Yes, there were times where it was hard, but I would not change it for the world. 

I enjoyed helping input election results, and I felt like a team like I was important too. It was exciting seeing all the results, and all the journalists were tracking it while working on stories. I hope to get a job as a journalist since I’m very close to graduating. I can’t wait to be a part of the newsroom!

15 Interesting Moments Of Resident Evil 7

Welcome to an immersive and scary game unlike any other….

Resident Evil 7 Biohazard was groundbreaking since it was in the first person, and you can even play it in virtual reality too. It’s dark with an eerie setting, and the atmosphere is creepy. 

It took a day of playing it to beat the game, and a few of the times a strategy guide was my best friend to help find out what to do next. Play it in the dark with the sound up, and you will be immersed in a world full of horror. Here are 15 of the best moments of Resident Evil 7 Biohazard.

1.When the wife goes crazy and attacks Ethan. Ethan finally found his wife, but then she loses it and goes after him instead. It was a scary and intense battle.

  1. Learning the Baker family has lost their minds especially when it looks like they are eating people. Ew.
  2. Daddy Jack comes back just when you think he is dead he comes back to life scaring you.
  3. Jack is defeated in an intense battle again, and you can roam the main house without the fear of being attacked.
  4. The Molded creatures seem to come out of nowhere and jump on you when you least expect it.

6.Old lady Grandma shows up in random places and stares at you when you are going the right way.

7.Random flashbacks happen at the end reminding you of the crazy beginning. The telephone also rings at random times in the game to tell you stuff moving forward.

  1. Random puzzles needed to be completed to move into different rooms. Wood figure needed to have the shadow match the picture. You need to get items to complete the burner and the serum for the cure.

9.The little girl hums a creepy tune and shows up to scare you when you least expect it.

10.The bosses are hard to beat at times, and they surprise you when you least expect it. Also intense and scary.

11.Finding tapes and playing them which makes you part of the scene. And finding out it was all Mia’s fault.

  1. Watching the story reveal itself as time goes on, and exploring different areas that are creepy and immersive.
  2. Using medkits that heal your wounds by splashing it on your hands.
  3. Reading notes about the virus and what happened to the missing people as the story goes on.
  4. Seeing the final ending and being amazed at how it all ended.

I loved the immersive world and the graphics were awesome. It was a good but creepy game to play in the dark. The story was full of jump scares and puzzles with someone chasing after you forcing you to hide at certain points. Overall a good game for survival horror fans.

10 Horror Movies To Watch During Halloween

Being scared never felt so good!

Halloween is right around the corner, and if you are not a child trick or treating, a parent with a child, or a party person then you are most likely to stay in and watch horror movies while giving out candy to kids. Or even turning off the light, and just having a movie marathon. 

Grab your popcorn and a drink, and be prepared to binge watch Halloween movies! Here are the top ten to watch during Halloween!

  1. Child’s Play: All the Chucky movies!
  2. Halloween series even the remakes!
  3. Friday the 13th series.
  4. Nightmare on Elm street Movies.

5.Texas Chainsaw Massacre movies

  1. Zombieland if you want something to laugh at too and any more Romero films.
  2. Scary Movie series to throw in more funny horror movies.
  3. The Blair Witch Project
  4. The Shining/Carrie and any Stephen King created movie based on his books!
  5. Saw Franchise!

These movies are the top rated horror movies to watch during Halloween, and they are sure to scare you to death. Some are gorier than others, but they will be a part of any Halloween horror movie binge!

10 Things You Only Get To Enjoy In October

October is definitely a spooky time!

It’s finally here and Halloween is right around the corner. October is the month of Halloween where people dress up in costumes and go trick or treat. Kids knock on doors and get candy from strangers, and there are a ton of horror movies to watch on TV. Here are ten things to do in October!

 

  • Go on a hayride especially in October and even go on a haunted one to be scared out of your pants.
  • Go to a bonfire and sit around the campfire telling scary stories.
  • Carve a pumpkin.
  • Watch nothing but horror movies!
  • Go to a haunted house in an amusement park.
  • Read horror novels to celebrate the month.
  • Plan a costume for Halloween.
  • To get in the spirit go to Halloween stores and get decorations for your house.
  • Watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer to celebrate!
  • Cook spooky treats!

 

There are a ton of things to do in October, and next time I will write about the 20 top horror movies to watch for Halloween.

20 Reasons Why I Love Twitter…

#love it since it allows me to chat with other fans of the show.

Twitter is one of my favorite social media platforms to use, and it’s kind of like Facebook except you give updates that are 140 characters about to be 280 or less for status updates. Here are the reasons why.

1.Hashtags! I love using hashtags in my statuses since people can see me more when I do.

2.Meeting people on Twitter can be way better than Facebook, and you have a lot in common with them.

  1. Lists are fun to use in order to keep up with your favorite Twitter users.
  2. It’s fun to use hashtags while watching a show, and talking to fans about the show.

5.It’s easier to update short statuses.

  1. I love using the hashtag retail problems since it’s a way to make fun of retail, and there is a whole community of people who use it.
  2. I can use it to find good blog articles, and retweet them.
  3. You can even use it to get the message about books and your favorite quotes.
  4. It’s more interactive and you can even retweet and quote a tweet.
  5. It’s a different audience.
  6. It’s fun to use to blow off steam.
  7. I love finding new books to read by using the hashtags.
  8. I love seeing my favorite authors thoughts during the day.
  9. People can be fun to interact with there too.
  10. You can follow your favorite actors and actresses.
  11. It can be used to follow your favorite Youtubers and know when a video is posted.
  12. It can be a way to get your name out there.
  13. It’s a fun way to chat with friends.
  14. It’s a way of communicating using the right words.
  15. It’s my favorite social media platform to use since I can reach people more with hashtags, and tweet while watching my favorite shows with fans.

There are many reasons why I love Twitter. Not only is it fun to use hashtags and tweet about my favorite shows. I can also use it for talking about retail problems and relate to other people who work retail, and want to blow off steam.

To The Person Ready To Graduate College

You are Almost there Just hang in there….

To the person ready to Graduate College,

I am going to graduate in December, like you, and I still don’t know what I’m doing at this point. I just know to get a full-time job in between. I know the time is not easy since you maybe have other things on your mind besides finding a job. I know you are still dealing with mounds of work in between being a student and working a job. 

It’s not easy, and some nights you might not even sleep as much. It’s hard to balance work and school with everything else, and you do have to make sure you eat, sleep, and take care of yourself. It’s hard to feel like you have everything together at times, but soon school will be over. You will just have work and that is it. No more craziness in trying to balance it all. 

And be proud since not many people graduate college, and it’s a big accomplishment. No one can take that away from you at all. School will be over, and you can focus on getting a job out of college. All of your hard work will pay off, and the tears will be worth it. Also the sleepless nights studying for a test the next day will be worth it too. It’s a long road, trust me, and there were awesome people I met along the way too. 

I felt like I come home meeting people in my major, and some have gone on to do great things. I remember times staying late at the library, and waiting for a friend. I remember having a full course load, and still making time for everything. It’s not easy, especially if you are a full-time student and working at the same time. It’s worth it in the end. 

People with a college degree will make more than people without one. Some even stay in the dorms, and living on their own will be nothing new. Some drive like me and commute to school which is a pain, and it means going to school early just to find a parking space. It means fighting the morning traffic and being an hour on the highway since the traffic is horrible. 

It also can mean time at an internship on top of work and school. It’s not going to be easy, but it’s worth it to walk across the stage to grab that degree. Some people wished they would have gone to school, and you did which is a big thing. You can hopefully get a good paying job and pay off college debt too. It’s worth it in the end since hard work pays off. You can do it, just hang in there, and if you are like me and graduate in December, then you are almost there.

 

10 Things I Definitely Won’t Miss About College

Some things I can’t wait to leave behind when I graduate

I will be graduating very soon and leaving VCU behind me. I do admit there are things I will miss and things I won’t miss. Here are 10 things I won’t miss:

  1. Early classes. I hate getting up early, and I will definitely not miss my 9 am class…

2.The commute there. I don’t live on campus and I take the highway to drive there which sucks.

3.Boring lectures since half of them put me to sleep.

4.Buying textbooks I didn’t need. Not many people use the books after the class they need it for.

5.Assigned reading. I love reading for fun and hate when it’s assigned to me.

6.Finding a parking space on the deck. Nothing is more of a pain in the ass then finding a parking space to park for a little bit.

7.The noisy library when I’m trying to study. Nothing says I can’t study then going to a library to study, and not being able to because it’s noisy…

8.Finding a computer when everything is full. In that respect when I didn’t have a laptop it was a pain to find a spot since everyone was using it.

9.I won’t miss the crowds. Going to and from class meant dealing with crowds and people.

10.No more dealing with people riding bikes. I won’t miss getting hit by a bike and then having them blaming it on me. I hate bikers because some actually ride in the middle of the road.

Those are the things I won’t miss about college, and I’m counting down the time till graduation.

20 Thoughts I Have While Writing A Book

Because writing a book is not easy, and the characters might not cooperate

Writing a book is interesting especially during a first draft since you don’t know what to expect, and here are 20 thoughts I have while writing it.

  1. Okay, time to start my day out writing…
  2. Only one sentence in and I can’t believe the turn you did. 
  3. God, this character is awesome…
  4. Now I hate this character…
  5. Why did you do that to me?
  6. Another twist really?
  7. Don’t do that to him on the page.
  8. You are lucky I can’t throw my laptop out the window.
  9. Time to get a snack.
  10. I so need to watch the show for inspiration.
  11. You are not cooperating again.
  12. A few paragraphs on scenery.
  13. No, you can’t change this story again my imaginary person.
  14. Time to watch more Youtube.
  15. Now to look up the scene and the pictures to write with it.
  16. Okay, now I can tackle it and make it better.
  17. Two more paragraphs.
  18. Nope, still nothing…
  19. You are still not making it right…
  20. Time to take a break, and get a drink maybe…

Writing a book is not easy, but at the end of the day, it’s a fun thing to do since it allows me to create worlds to make people think!

Cats Or Dogs: Which Do VCU Students Prefer?

Some people choose dogs over cats!

Cats and dogs are common pets people have around, whether an owner is walking a dog on Monroe park, or a cat is on the porch or even inside a dorm at Virginia Commonwealth University.

A tally of random VCU students was taken from Twitter and various Facebook groups such as the VCU Mass Communications, VCU class of 2017, VCU Fun and VCU Class of 2015. About 35 students participated and 23 preferred dogs while 12 preferred cats.

For some people, dogs are good companions because they have good energy and get excited over small things, which is why Morgan Mathis says she has a dog. Dogs can sense when people are sad, and dogs are open to embrace.

“I’d just rather have a dog by my side,” posted Mathis a VCU junior, majoring in public relations.

“Dogs they’re way easier to train and are fairly forthright with their affection.” posted sophomore, Benjamin Sanchez-Gil, a journalism major.

Cats are more introverted and stand-offish. They don’t always like people, and they can carry an attitude. They’re more independent and less maintenance.

“Cats. They cuddle a little better. I don’t handle the bulkiness of dogs (and my favorite dogs are big dogs).” posted Rachel Grim, Senior, English writing major.

“I agree with cats. But they’re also less maintenance for student lifestyles apartment, small house and downtown living. ” stated Chris Parker, former VCU student.

Some prefer cats over dogs, and some prefer dogs to cats. For the polls the dog won hands down.

10 Lessons ‘The Bachelor’ And ‘The Bachelorette’ Taught Me

These shows can teach us about our journey to love

It’s no surprise I love watching the shows “The Bachelor” and “Bachelorette.” It can also teach you lessons too, and here is what it taught me.

  1. Put yourself out there.

As scary as it is, you never know what happens unless you try.

  1. Don’t be afraid to show someone who you are. 

In order to see if you are compatible with someone, you need to show them different sides of you.

  1. Taking chances can be scary, yet exciting. 

As hard as taking a chance with someone new it is can be the best too.

  1. Dating can be like selling yourself. 

When you first date someone it can actually seem like you are selling yourself to them.

  1. When you find someone you click with you know right away. 

There are times on the show that I know they can click with each other those are the ones who usually last.

  1. Competing for a person’s attention can be difficult. 

Especially with 20 people to beat out. Even competing with the world around for one person can be difficult.

  1. Never tear down another person to make yourself seem better. 

Not to mention it makes you look bad.

  1. Never get drunk the first night. 

Since you want to remember it!

  1. Love can be amazing. 

When you find love it can be the best in the world especially when real feelings develop.

  1. Above all, relationships can be amazing when they work right. 

Relationships can come and go but if you find the right one then you will know, and they can make it to the end.

I love watching these shows since it gives people hope that the right person is out there, and it makes a good show since people are competing for one person. The drama makes a good show, and it can show you what relationships can be like too.

10 Things I Wish I Knew About College

Going to college is a way different experience, and it can be fun!

College is a pretty interesting thing since it’s way different then I expected. The course loads are harder too, and here are 10 things I wish I knew before starting it.

  1. You need sleep.

I never had a set schedule in high school, and when I got to college it was important for doing well in school. Some of the tests I could have passed if I got more sleep the night before.

  1. Study for a week ahead or more.

Tests are the worst, and if you don’t study enough then it can have you feeling nervous beforehand and develop test anxiety.

  1. Don’t be afraid to try new things!

College is a time to experiment and to see what you like and what you don’t.

  1. Don’t be afraid to make friends.

High school was so cliquey I only made a few friends, and college is way different since there are no cliques.

  1. Network.

This is the time to meet professionals in a field you want to get into.

  1. Food is your friend.

The one good thing about going to VCU is all the restaurants to try, and you need fuel.

  1. For the people 21 and over never go to class buzzed.

If you attend a class that way then it will be hard to remember the important stuff.

  1. Caffeine is your friend!

It can help you study and not fall asleep during class.

  1. Don’t be afraid to give people chances.

People can surprise you, and don’t be afraid to give them a chance.

  1. Try your best to get good grades.

It will work out in the long run, and never let anyone get in the way of your studies.

College is also a learning experience, and it will also challenge you. Don’t be afraid to step up to the plate.

20 Thoughts Every College Student Has During End Of Summer

The End of Summer is Coming Which means back to school

Every college student is home for the summer, and that means a time to relax. But here are thoughts we have when it comes to an end.

1.Wow…that went by fast. It was just yesterday it started too, or it felt like it.

  1. I’ve binged watched my favorite movie 20 times so far…
  2. It’s coming to an end soon I can’t believe I go back to school next week…
  3. Where is my backpack, and I have to put my parking pass back in my car again.
  4. Back to high way driving and traffic is going to be a pain.
  5. I can’t wait to go back to boring lectures that make me want to read during it.
  6. Back to writing papers and studying like crazy again.
  7. Let me clean up my room more since I have a week left.
  8. On second thought let me go get more stuff done on reading.
  9. Nope, time to play video games before I can’t anymore.
  10. Let me talk to friends and have a life before I don’t have one anymore.
  11. Damn, I can’t believe I don’t have enough time for stuff anymore.
  12. I’m definitely not going to be able to party as much when school starts.
  13. What do I have to do again? Which video games can I beat before college?
  14. Whelp back to wanting to sleep all day I can’t wait.
  15. Trips to the library and ignoring the world with headphones.
  16. Now back to parking space fighting.
  17. Back to getting from one class to the other.
  18. It went by too fast since it’s over already, and I’m starting next week.
  19. I graduate and it will be awesome to finally be done with school.

Now that the summer is almost over it’s back to college!

To The Person Suffering From Depression…

You are not alone

I have been where you are, and I have been through it multiple times. 

It’s not an easy thing, and people can be horrible in telling you that you have no right to be depressed. They also tell you to get over it. But really they don’t understand the fact that you feel horrible. Horrible to the point where you don’t want to go out. You don’t feel like doing anything with anyone, and you want to stay in your room and cry. You don’t have any motivation on days off either all you want to do is watch television and cry. Sometimes you might want to drink alcohol to the point where you pass out, and feel horrible about it the next day. You go through the motions of life, and feel like hell.

People will try to get you out, but you don’t feel like it at all. They might even get you to try to talk about your feelings to feel better, and they might make it worse in the end. People don’t understand what it’s like till it happens to them, and it can lead you to make bad decisions even though you don’t mean to do it.

There is a point where it passes through. It’s not forever, and it can be temporary too, and if you are depressed because you are lonely then hanging out with friends or even meeting someone new can do wonders. It can pick you up when you are down. Just being around a positive person can make you feel better and less depressed. It will seem like you are lonely, and no one wants you around, but trust me when I say it’s not forever. Feelings of depression can disappear and doing things like taking up a new hobby. Getting outside and moving around can help as well as listening to music. It’s hard I know since I’ve been there, and it will feel like the end of the world. You’ll feel like no one understands you too, and that you can’t possibly be happy again. You will though, and you can get through it. Don’t give up either since you never know what is around the corner.

Things can be horrible one day, but in one split second someone can come into your life that will change everything. They will help you grow, and even help you through your depression to the point where you can function. I used to be so depressed I just cried all the time, and there wasn’t a week that went by where I’ve had a break down. Now it’s a different story since I know I can get through it. I felt like I lost it all, and that nothing would ever make me happy again. I resorted to horrible habits which made me feel even worse. Then it hit me, and I found something that made me happier.

10 Reasons Relationships Are Just The Best

They are something to make time seem better

Healthy relationships are the best to have, and you have a best friend and boyfriend/girlfriend all in one. They also can understand you more than the rest of the world. Here are ten reasons why it’s the best.

  1. You don’t have to worry about a Valentine.

Holidays like that are a breeze since you never have to worry about not having anyone.

  1. You always have a fun date to take to family events.

No need to worry about who to take to as a date you already have one.

  1. Cuddles whenever you want.

You never have to worry about not being held since you have someone to hold you when you want.

  1. Someone to hold you when you feel down.

When you have a long day, and down about life no need to worry since someone can hold you to make it all better.

  1. You rarely have to be lonely.

When you are single you had to worry about the constant loneliness, and when you are with someone you don’t have to worry about it as much.

  1. You have someone to explore places with.

When you are with someone you can explore places and you don’t have to do it alone.

  1. It’s the best feeling in the world having someone by your side.

Being with someone can make even the worst day better.

  1. You can also turn to them to take your mind off things.

It means you have someone to help you not worry as much as you would.

  1. Someone can go with you to the movies.

You never have to worry about going to the movies alone either.

  1. You have someone to laugh and hang out with. 

And you don’t need to worry about not having anyone to talk to.

Being in a relationship is a very good feeling, and done right it can be the best. You learn stuff in each relationship you are in, and it can also tell you what you don’t want in one. Each will have its own issues and challenges, and some are less complicated than others.

10 Reasons Why The Fall Rocks

Bye bye bugs, and hello cooler weather

I love the fall season better than the summer since the heat makes it hard to do anything fun, and there are bugs out, like mosquitoes and bees. Not a fun time to be out. But, in a few months, it will all be over, and the fall will return, bringing nice weather. Here are 10 reasons why the fall rocks!

  1. Cooler weather and I love the fact that it’s just right.
  2. Time to wear hoodies again, which are my favorite articles of clothing to wear.
  3. The changing leaves are pretty.
  4. Halloween is soon. Time to see Halloween stores opening up once again.
  5. My birthday month is right around the corner.
  6. “American Horror Story” is back! I love that show too.
  7. Bugs are gone and no need to worry about mosquitoes.
  8. The smell of wood fireplaces is in the air.
  9. Horror movies are playing on television.
  10. Time to cuddle up with a special someone and stay inside!

There are a ton of reasons why the fall is better, and it’s my favorite time of the year. Not to mention the Celtic festival is right around the corner too. I can’t wait for it to start, and it also means graduation is just around the corner!

11 Of The Worst Dudes You Encounter On Tinder

Tinder can be a mixed bag, and some people have the worst bios with no pictures.

Online dating is becoming the normal thing these days, and Tinder is a popular app to use. It can be fun to swipe left or right, especially when you find someone attractive. Tinder does have its downsides though, and here are 11 of the worst things you will encounter on Tinder:

  1. Guys with pictures of girls in their pictures.

I have swiped left so many times because seeing a guy with pictures of girls doesn’t make him look like a stud at all. It makes him look like a tool.

  1. Guys with No bio and one pic…

What is the point in getting to know someone if you don’t have a bio or a good amount of pictures?

  1. Guys with cheesy pickup lines…

Nothing says awesome like a cheesy pickup line.

  1. People who just want to hook up, and on the first date.

At least get to know the person first,

  1. No pictures of the person just an object.

Really? Who are you? Is this a joke to you? Someone even put a fake profile picture too.

  1. Try not to take it too seriously at times, and talk to people.

It can be used when you are bored and need something to do…

  1. People who want to just do much way too soon. Get to know me first.

Don’t talk about me being the right one, and then ignore me before getting to know me…

  1. Never have your bio as, “Drip drop while we lip lock.”

Lame…Cause nothing says awesome like a cheezy line.

  1. It sucks when you swipe the wrong way and they are gone forever!

But he was cute…I wanted to like him.

  1. Never pose with dead animal

Leave that for another time. Or, show me when you are in person later down the line. 

  1. Never put, “I have low expectations and hope yours are lower.”

I mean really? I’m not lowering my standards to raise yours…

Overall, I have talked to some people on there, and it’s not all bad. Experiences may vary. But in the amount of time, some of the bios can turn me off real quick and swipe left.

My Favorite Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy Book Series

Reading paranormal romances provide the right escape from the real world.

I love reading books just for fun, and I have been doing it since the fifth grade. Reading is an escape from life, and I love reading paranormal romance books the most. I love vampires, werewolves, and witches.I have so many favorite series and books I can reread over and over again. It’s hard for me to narrow it down my list of favorites since reading is something I enjoy doing. There are some series I will definitely auto-buy since I love the writing styles of the authors. Here are my top ones:

The first one is the Love at Stake Series by Kerrelyn Sparks. I love her writing style since she is good at describing the characters, and I love seeing the character’s progress as the novels go on. She has a different character couple for each book. They are either humans, vampires, and/or shapeshifters. I love what she did with the vampire genre, and how everything evolves.

Another series I can re-read over and over again is L.J Smith’s series Vampire DiariesNightworld, and the Secret Circle; these are all books I love to read since the author is good at writing books. A lot of the protagonists are in high school so it’s more young adult than anything. I love the way she creates her characters since she is good at writing and describing couples and love triangles. I also love the way she describes the setting without it being over descriptive. They are good books, and I love reading SpellBinder and Dark Angel from her Night World books. I also love the original Vampire Diaries books and the love triangle between all of them.

Another series I love is The Darkest Powers series by Kelley Armstrong. I love the characters, and how everything is laid out. It’s a good series, and there are love triangles with one of them, and they are all trying to get away from the group experimenting on them since they are supernatural creatures. She even released women of the other world series, and I loved them too. I love her writing style and the fact that all the characters are well developed too.

Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse series is another one since I love her real world feel to her characters and the way she introduces her characters. I love Sookie, and the way the relationships develop over books. She is good at world building and creating characters.

The last one I’m going to talk about is Yasmine Galenorn’s Indigo Court series and her women of the otherworld. I love how descriptive she is with the worlds, and the character relationships as they develop over time. She is good with describing the creatures in her world.

How I Broke Out Of Writer’s Block

It happens to the best of us.

It happens to the best of us; some days the words flow and other times they are stopped right in their tracks. It sucks and gets in the way of a good writing flow. There are ways of getting over it though, and some can be helpful in making you feel better to get the words flowing again. It can be hard to get out of when it’s caused by depression and emotional break ups. Time outside in the sun can help, and even taking a shower to clear your head works. Writing exercises can help too and can lead to more stories. Reading books can help as well since it reminds you why you are writing in the first place. Having a notebook nearby can help especially when you are stuck or have too many thoughts. Music can help too since it can jump start my brain into thinking of topics, and story ideas. It helps to use television and movies too since it’s hard to write through things without a muse so to speak. For this book, I’m using reality television to get me in the mood to write this book. I’m using shows like Flavor of LoveReal Chance of LoveRock of LoveI love New York and Daisy of Love. It can help me see which characters need to be created, and I’m even making a list of perfect guy qualities so I can make my characters fall in love. It’s something to escape to, and reading romance books can help some especially if you need inspiration. Writer’s block happens to everyone, and making lists of topics to write about can help. Novel writing software can help you jumpstart it too. It can be hard to get out of it though. It can also be a sign of being afraid it will turn out horrible, and in that case, it’s easier to edit a story than a blank page. Writer’s block can last for some time, and the easiest way is to power on through. Even writing sprints and freewriting can help with getting out of it. It can be the worst to deal with and it can really get in the way of productivity. Sleeping and having snacks periodically can also help. Also, some people can’t write in silence, and I know I can’t. I have stuff on in the background to help. I even made a play list to turn to when I get stuck. It’s a horrible thing to happen, but with the right motivation and tools it will be easy to power through. I know once I’m on a roll the words crank out by themselves.

How To Heal From Heartbreak

Everyone gets their heart broken at some point.

Heartbreak is not an easy thing at all, and it can be hard when it first rears its ugly head. It’s even worse if it was handled wrong, or the person seems like they moved on before you did. It can kill you when you are reminded of their vehicles everywhere, and torture you for days on what-if scenarios. It can make you depressed for days, and not want to do anything but cry because of it. 

Your family will notice, and your even friends. It’s not an easy thing, in fact, you might wish you were hit by a bus or something more painful since it’s that bad. It will pass though, and what will end up happening is that you will find someone better. 

Things happen for a reason, and the best thing you can do is give yourself time to heal. It can also make you see that you have awesome people looking out for you, and people can be there to listen to you. Throw yourself into your hobbies, play games, read books and focus on you for the time being. 

You will be able to move on, and it may be a blessing in disguise to do the things you want to do. Keep busy, and don’t stay inside all alone since that is the worst. Listen to music and binge watch television, and it will get better. It’s the worst especially if it’s out of the blue. 

Reaching out to people in the meantime can help. See friends and just keep doing you since the right person will find you, and breakups can happen for all sorts of reasons, too. It also sucks when you are cheated on, lied to, and treated like you are worthless. 

As fun as your last relationship was you will find someone better than the last. Someone who gets you, and someone with the qualities you are looking for. The person who treated you horribly will wind up with karma coming back to them three fold. It’s a process, but if you find the right person, it will be worth it in the end.

7 Ways To Survive Working Retail

Working retail is not for everyone and there are ways to cope with it…

Working retail isn’t as easy as people think. It’s not just scanning clothes, and bagging stuff. It’s also dealing with rude customers and horrible bosses at times. It can drain you to the point where you don’t feel like doing anything anymore. There are ways to survive it and some methods help you tune it out.

  1. Read a book when you get off.

Reading allows you to escape reality, and that is better than anything else.

  1. Play video games after work.

It can help you take your mind off stuff.

  1. Alcohol. 

It helps to numb yourself from all the stupid stuff you deal with.

  1. Hang out with coworkers to swap horror stories.
  2. Get good shoes since you will be on your feet 8 hours a day.
  3. Let it all go.

People will try to make you mad, but don’t let it bother you.

  1. Listen to music afterwards.

It can help take you to another place.

All these methods can help you survive, and when you can’t take it anymore look for a better job and apply places. Working retail is not for everyone, and it should be something temporary especially if you are in college.

10 Reasons To Keep A Journal

Journaling is a fun way to express yourself and help remember important events.

Journaling is fun for me to do, and I use it to keep track of events and my thoughts. Here are ten reasons why you should too!

  1. I forget everything and writing down stuff to remember helps me keep track of the stuff I need to remember since it’s important. 

2.Writing down thoughts can help you work stuff out and it’s cheaper than therapy.

  1. It helps me remember important events, and helps me when I’m stressed.
  2. It’s a fun way to keep track of writing notes when I’m working on books.
  3. It can be used as a to-do list. 
  4. You can use it to keep track of books you read, and your thoughts about them.
  5. You can even use it to have a creative outlet like drawing and putting in the results to writing exercises. 
  6. It can help you keep track of how far you progressed, and your favorite things too.
  7. You can even put pictures in it of important events.
  8. Use it as a scrapbook, and keep track of concerts, and even use fun stickers in it too!

There are a ton of reasons to keep a journal, and it can be used to help keep track of events, write down your thoughts, and you can use it to look back on to remember the important events too.

Ten Reasons Why I Love Reading Books!

Reading books can take you to places, and introduce you to people in a fantasy world.

I love reading books, and it’s one of the things I enjoy doing during the summer. I can catch up on my favorite book series and even try new ones. Here are ten reasons why I love reading books.

  • It’s an escape from everyday life! Reality can be a drag, and a book can help me escape from the boringness of everyday life.
  • It can go more in depth than a movie can. When you read a book then watch the movie more details are added that would not be there in a movie.
  • Time is faster: There is nothing like getting lost in a book to make time fly.
  • Meet new people and characters you can relate to.
  • You can be in a different world other than the real one.
  • You can always learn something new by reading books.
  • It will help you see different sides to situations and some of it is relatable.
  • It shows you a different perspective.
  • Books will always be there.
  • Books will never leave you like people will!

Books are an escape, and I love reading to pass the time.

10 Reasons To Write A Blog

Everyone has a story and something to say!

Blogging can be a fun way to reach out to people, and it can give you discipline as well as a set schedule. Here are the reasons to write a blog:

1.You have something to say. Everyone has a story, and a lesson they can teach to others. 

  1. It’s better than therapy and you can reach out to others.
  2. You can set a schedule, and it teaches you how to keep to a schedule.
  3. Writing can be fun if it’s a topic you enjoy talking about.
  4. It’s a way to reach people who are going through the same things you do.
  5. To sell books if you are an author, and you can use it to promote your books.
  6. People will be grateful if you help them through your work to escape.
  7. Everyone has a story.
  8. Research can be fun and you can pass on stuff you learn.
  9. Why wouldn’t you want to start one since you can make money, and help people along the way.

Writing blogs can be fun especially on subjects you enjoy. You can reach out to people, and it’s a way of expressing yourself.

Cashier Pet Peeves: What Not To Do

Don’t do these things to a cashier, and treat them nicely!

Being a cashier can be an easy job at times since all you do is scan, bag, and put a button to cash someone out. It also comes with it’s own challenges and customers can be rude at times. Here are cashier pet peeves:

Don’t get mad at the cashier over long lines since they have no control over it. 

It’s not the cashiers job to find an item that has a barcode, and they can’t move from the register. Make sure every item has one, or get a like item to avoid it. 

Cashiers don’t control the prices so you can’t blame them for ringing it up wrong when all they do is scan, bag and hit a button. 

If they bag items wrong don’t be rude about it instead be nice. Don’t make me cry because I will if you are that mean. 

They have no control over your card; don’t blame them for it. 

Never be on your cell phone when checking out. If you want to be that rude I might actually double scan your items since you aren’t paying attention. 

Never leave your cart by the coral or counter since you pass by it as you come out the door. Be nice and take it with you to the front. In the parking lot put it in the cart place instead of leaving it in a parking spot.

Don’t make the comment it’s nice day to the cashier and then go too bad you are stuck here.

Never put your money on the counter instead put it in their hand. 

Never be rude to them and ignore their nice greeting.

Don’t leave items at the register; put it away before you check out. 

Use the divider when possible, and don’t be rude when saying it’s separate. A jerk actually said that like I was a naughty child when he didn’t say when his stuff ended. 

Don’t point out the difference between parsley and cilantro since I’m sure they know it. They are looking for the code to type in the system. 

You can’t use a gift card to get a gift card. 

They know how to count change since the register does it. Give them the change before they close the register. 

Don’t stand too close to the person in line give them space. I’ve even had a customer get in my space, and he said he was not trying to steal my pin like he was trying to be funny about the fact that he was too close. 

If a coupon expires don’t yell at the cashier about it since you are too stupid to read the date. 

Never give them boob or sock money since that is disgusting. 

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Grab your bags yourself and don’t blame the cashier for forgetting to give you your bags since it’s also your responsibility to get your stuff too. 

Don’t have your kids be rude in hanging the cashier items. I had one kid glare at me, and hand me stuff forcefully. 

Also, your kids should not play on the bagging area. It’s annoying and I want to get you out as fast as possible. 

Cashiers are people too, and when they are closed they are closed. Just be nice and friendly to them back.

Ten Reasons Why Summer Break Rocks!

Now that college is over for the summer time for a break, and enjoy the nice weather

Summer is here and that means time for a long break from everything. Of course, you are used to the craziness of work and school, but you do need a break from it all. Here are ten reasons why:

  1. Binge watching on Netflix! Time to catch up on all your favorite television shows, and movies too. You can even spend a day doing nothing but movies.
  2. Time to play video games! You can now catch up on all the games you have played but could not get to, thanks to school. 
  3. Sleeping, since during the college semester can be a challenge with late night studying. 
  4. Spending time with family and friends, because you can finally have a social life with school over.
  5. Time to relax! School can be stressful and with endless exams it’s hard to relax until it’s over.
  6. Reading instead of reading boring text books you can spend your time reading for fun, and the books you love.
  7. Partying if you are a big partier then you can go to more parties now then during the school year. 
  8. Time to clean your room. If you are like me then you can clean up your messy room that you didn’t bother to straighten up during the school year. 
  9. Amusement park time since the parks are now open until the summer ends. Time for fun with friends. 
  10. No stress about exams, assignments, or class lectures. 

There are many reasons why the summer rocks, and it’s a good time to relax, read, and enjoy the break.

Summer Break Is Here For College Students

College is over for the summer and time to relax!

College is going to be over for most of us within the past few weeks. It’s already done for me. I’m happy over the break since this semester was crazy for me. Every college student loves summer break since it means time to relax and kick back. Say bye to finals and homework for 4 months or less. Say bye to late night study breaks in the library, and eating at the restaurants in around school. No more deadlines, and teachers with boring lectures. Time to watch Netflix and play video games. Say hi to spending time catching up on fun reading, and binge eating. Some work during the summer so there is just one thing to do now. Work and relax in between. No more dealing with crowded lecture halls, and sharing bathrooms with people who don’t know how to clean up after themselves. No more having to fight over parking spaces, and no more going to class and waiting for it to begin. Summer is awesome. For some students it’s back home, and for commuters it means no more commuting to college. A break to rest from long days, and endless assignments with boring lectures. 

Another semester down and one more for me. Then I leave VCU in December. My degree in hand which means this is my last summer in college. Time to relax and just work. Everyone needs a break. College while working is not for everyone since it feels like two jobs in one. It also means no more assignments due, and nothing to worry about except for anxiously checking degree works to look out for final grades. Last summer I learned I had to be behind another semester thanks to a D. The following one I’ve pulled my grades up, and it’s looking like a stress free summer just working. Time off is going to be weird since working and going to school made me have a schedule. Now the schedule is mine in between work.

I hope every college student enjoys time off, and uses it to catch up on sleep, television shows, and binge eating. Summers are good to relax, and just focus on one thing instead of several. Time to relax and kick back since the fall will be my last!

 

10 Ways To Survive The Final Weeks Of The Spring Semester In College!

Every college student can agree that the last few weeks of the semester is crazy….

It’s that time of year again and a time when school is almost over. I’m sure every college student feels the stress of finals, papers, and group projects. These last few weeks are the worst, and it will throw any student into a break down at any moment. Here are ways to survive it!

  • Relax I know it seems like everything is overwhelming, but it’s not the end of the world. And it’s almost over, since summer break is almost here.
  • Prioritize: Make a list of all the assignments, tests dates, and projects. Knock out the deadlines coming up first then spend time knocking out the rest.
  • Don’t wait till the last minute. I know it’s hard, and you want to just sleep instead of tackle the nine page paper. It’s better to start it early so you can take your time and do well on the paper.
  • It’s just a test…it’s not the end of the world and your life doesn’t depend on it. Study for it ahead of time, and then you can definitely pass with flying colors. 
  • Sleep…Staying up till 2am to finish a paper might seem good, but you need to sleep in order to destress from the day.
  • Stop worrying about it period. Occupy your time with something fun to keep the stress from finals at bay. Worrying will only make it worse. 
  • Hang with friends it helps keep your stress levels down, and they can help you not take things too much. 
  • Coffee is your best friend since it keeps the brain stimulated.
  • Netflix and movies since binge watching television and movies can keep your stress levels down. 
  • It’s almost over just hang in there, and finish up the semester strong!

Ten Things To Do On A Rainy Day!

Nothing is more awesome then rainy days off…

It’s raining for the second day in a row, and I’m off work and school. Rainy days are not for going out at all. It can also make the day ruined since forget going to the mall, but rainy days can be productive too so here are ten things to do on a rainy day!

  • Catch up on sleep nothing is more important to a college student then sleep right?
  • Binge watch shows-nothing awesome like staying inside watching movies and tv shows all day
  • Catch up on reading because my to be read list is a mile long.
  • Write in a journal because nothing is more inspirational then writing my thoughts down.
  • Play video games. Time to catch up on the games that you haven’t been playing as much lately.
  • Clean up your room since if you are like me then you definitely need it. Organizing books and papers can be the perfect thing to do on a rainy day.
  • Listen to music since rain means staying inside and relaxing. 
  • Social media time to check Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, and all the other fun things.
  • Laundry since rainy days mean doing chores that you keep putting off since it’s boring. 
  • Relax since it’s almost the end of the semester for college students. Mine ends in a few weeks, and it means a ton of time to read, write, and film Youtube videos!

As always there is plenty of stuff to do on a rainy day, and college students hang in there since the semester is almost over!

My Pet Peeves List For The Jewelry Counter

Not all stores are the same, and if you can find it cheaper somewhere else then go there…

This is one of the areas where I work at, and it surprises me how rude people can be to the person working behind the counter. After 5 years of it there are certain things that stick out. There are more of them, but I’ll leave that for the book I’m writing. Here are my pet peeves for the jewelry counter:

Quit telling me how to do my job. I’ve been working there for so long I really don’t need you to tell me how to do a watch battery, and who to serve first. 

Don’t get mad at me when I can’t fix your watch. I don’t have the tools a professional does so the only way I can open one is if it has a latch. If not it requires a pressurized tool. Nothing I have…

I don’t make the rules, and I can’t work on your watch if it’s not a brand we carry in the store due to liability issues.

I hate it when you interrupt me when I’m with someone else because you have a “quick question” have you heard of waiting your turn? Stop being impatient and never interrupt me when I’m with someone.

If they did it at the other store then go there, since each store is run differently…

Not all the stores are the same. They are different and carry different stuff. What one store has the other might not, and I keep telling people they might be exclusive to that store. 

Don’t ask me where an item is without looking for it first….

Don’t tap on the glass counter it’s annoying, especially if I have a migraine.

Don’t yell at me about the price of the batteries since I don’t control it.

I don’t care if it’s cheaper at another store if it’s so cheap then go there I really don’t care at all.

Don’t ask me the price if it’s on the tag. Use your head and read first then ask me.

At the counter we don’t have a weighing station so don’t get mad about us not being able to ring up weighable items. 

Don’t complain about having to ring up items in the cases at the jewelry counter. That’s the rule, and I didn’t make it. I’ll be happy to walk it up for you to the register just be nice, and don’t be rude about it.

Never, ever film us or take our pictures if we are doing our jobs, and you can’t stand us following the rules.

Never leave your trash on a shelf; instead throw it in a trashcan.

Never leave items in the wrong spot. I hate you if you do this.

Take your attitude somewhere else. I really don’t care if you had a bad day; it doesn’t mean you need to throw it back at me.

 

My Thoughts During A Class Lecture

Every student has to attend them.

Every college student has to go to a boring lecture, and every student has a class they have to sit through since it’s required for their degree. Some days it’s not bad since all you have to do is sit and listen. Sometimes you really don’t feel like going or putting up with it so here are my thoughts during this college lecture.

Do I really need to go to this lecture?

I have one class left to skip and still get an A…

I have to go in this time….

It’s so boring.

Nope I’m not going to need this stuff in the real world. 

Boring.

I would rather be home right now. 

Did he really just joke about using explosives?

I guess that is kind of funny.

No one cares about this subject. 

I’m not using this stuff in the field I’m in.

Can this class be over with already? Really 45 minutes left?

Please time go by faster….

I already have enough issues, and now I have to add this boring lecture to it. 

The class only counts attendance some, and the next pointless class I can skip. 

I already took this class, and I wish I could take the test and be done with it. 

Been there, done that, and heard the lecture already. 

I can’t believe I’m retaking a class I didn’t need to retake. 

Nothing new there at all. 

Don’t fall asleep…don’t fall asleep.

All I have to do is register the fact that I was there. 

3 classes left; I can do it.

I feel like doodling just like the girl next to me…

Please let this be done already. 

Almost done with today, and then I can go home. 

Finally he gave us the attendance code. 

That is one hour and fifteen minutes of my life I’ll never get back…

And those are just some of my thoughts during a lecture. There is more but you get the point. Getting an education at college is important and some lecture classes are necessary. But it will be worth it to get a degree in the end. 

 

How Not To Treat A Fitting Room Person

Don’t do these things at the fitting room…

 

One of the areas I work in from time to time is the fitting room, and here are some of the thing you should not do at them:

  • Don’t yell at the phone operator if another person in the department we transfer you to doesn’t pick up. We don’t control them not picking up. We don’t have any control over the schedule. They are most likely in another department since managers run then around like crazy. 
  • Don’t give me flack over the item limit. I don’t make the rules, and we have to enforce it for security reasons. 
  • We don’t have a directory of every item our store carries, and since we are the fitting room we don’t know what every department carries. Let us transfer you. 
  • Don’t ask for directions to our store since it’s called google, and the internet is your best friend. 
  • Wait patiently for a manager since they are busy running other departments. They will get to you just not right away.
  • If they don’t pick up right away hanging up then calling back isn’t going to help at all. Neither is being rude and accusing us of hanging up on you. We need to put you on hold. Don’t lie and say you got disconnected either since we know the truth. You got impatient and hung up. 
  • Don’t leave your clothes crumpled in the dressing room. Place it in the cart instead because it’s nice to do for the person after you, and I hate cleaning up after adults…
  • Clean up after yourself. Never use the fitting room as a bathroom, and please don’t think it’s a good place to have sex in…
  • Don’t leave bras on the floor, and put them on their pegs instead of leaving them for people to step on. 
  • Don’t be rude to the operator period since they are humans who need a job. Nothing wrong with that since people need to make money. 
  • Don’t ask me what I think of your outfit since I really don’t care. 
  • If we are helping you locate an item, be patient, and don’t hang up because when we are shorthanded we have to walk to the area which takes time. Don’t accuse us of hanging up since we aren’t near the phone. 
  • Okay, you don’t want an item leave it in the basket or on the place they have for it. 
  • Don’t get mad at us because you want to check out at the fitting room when it doesn’t have a register. 
  • Don’t get mad at us when the item you are price checking is different then you saw it on the shelf. We don’t control the prices…

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  • Never try on undies especially the ones in the plastic packages. 
  • Never try on bathing suits without undies. 
  • No, I’m not checking your underwear so you can see the size. You put it on this morning you should know…
  • If you leave clothes and plan to buy them tell us, and don’t get mad if we take them and you didn’t tell us you plan on buying them. 
  • Please, don’t count out items to me like you think I’m stupid. I’m not a child despite looking like one. Don’t be rude to me like that.

 

These are just some of the things I have issues with while working there, and don’t do them at the fitting room. he fitting room also answers the phone too so just remember everyone is human. Also getting an attitude doesn’t help since people do that daily to people behind the counter. Just be nice and clean up after yourself.

How Not To Be A Rude Customer

Never do these things to a sales associate

 

A sales associate’s job is not as easy as people think, since there are a ton of obstacles in the way to make the shift better. One of the hurdles we face is rude customers, and quite frankly I’ve been having a lot of mean ones more than nice ones lately. In order to not be a rude customer never do these things, and you will find sales associates nicer to you in turn:

Get off your cell phone when talking to a sales associate. It’s rude, and if I see someone on a cell I don’t want to interrupt them; I was taught never to interrupt people having a conversation on the phone. I also find it rude as if you don’t think we are important enough to be paid attention to. At least finish it then ask for help.

Clean up after yourself if you try on shoes. I get it you think a sales associate’s job is to clean up after people, it’s not. It’s to help you find what you were looking for, and I was taught to clean up after myself.

Don’t ask us where a department is if there are signs hanging up on the wall. There are countless times where a person could have looked up to see the department that they were looking for is right in front of them.

Don’t ask if this is the price when it’s obviously is, and if the price said $5.00 right on there with a sticker then it’s the price and if it rings up differently then get a customer service person and tell them. Don’t yell at the sales associate since they don’t have control over the price.

If we say hi and talk to you then be nice back to us. Never ignore us and don’t be rude if all we are trying to ask you is if you need help.

Don’t leave your trash on the shelves since it’s rude as well, and throw it away in the trash can or at least ask someone where one is.

Never treat the sales person like they are stupid since some of them are smarter than you think. It’s really rude when you say item and don’t talk directly to me at all. Be nice, and say excuse me. One lady thought she had to repeat to me twice like she thought I was stupid when all she had to do was talk to me directly and not like I was a piece of furniture.

When you need help in an area don’t stand there, and complain about not being helped. Talk to someone, or better yet look around and don’t yell for someone especially if they can hear you. Twice I’ve had customers yelling about needing help when I was right there…Treat us like people and not like dogs.

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Never whistle, beckon with your finger, or snap at me when you need help. It’s rude and sales associates are not dogs.

There are more, but these are some of the things you need to do in order to not be a rude customer….

 

Celiac Disease: What Is Okay To Eat?

There are things you can eat if you have Celiac Disease

For someone with Celiac disease their whole diet has to change, and it’s not easy when a lot of places use wheat flour in the dishes they serve. When it comes to Celiac disease, a person is not allowed wheat period, since it will damage their intestines and digestive tract. However, if they have an intolerance and not celiac disease a person can actually have gluten but it has to be a small amount. A person with celiac disease cannot have wheat, rye, barley or triticale, bulgur, oats, and seitan.

Even though they can’t have wheat, there are substitutes for flour that can be used in place of it; to cook with such as amaranth, arrowroot, banana, barley, brown rice, buckwheat, chia, chick pea, coconut, coffee, cornflower, cornmeal, hemp, lupin flour, maize, millet, potato, and others that can be used in its place. 

Celiac disease is diagnosed more than it used to be, and it’s more mainstream since more people have it now. Grocery stores are becoming more gluten free friendly since some ingredient boxes are now labeling their foods certified gluten free. In order to be certified gluten free companies have to go through the program in order to make sure their products meet the certification. Straight from the Gluten-Free Certification program, “The GFCP trademark provides the added assurance to consumers that products carrying the trademark have met stringent requirements for the manufacture of gluten-free products, setting themselves apart from all other products displaying ‘GF Marks’ or making their own gluten-free claims.” The program was created by the Allergen Control Group and the Canadian Celiac Association. 

Some products will say gluten free on them, and some will say no gluten containing products are made. There are warnings like made in a facility that processes wheat which means people with celiac disease are taking a risk, since they can’t have it at all. 

Some grocery stores can boast having an entirely gluten free section, and plenty of food for people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance to choose from. Wegman’s is one that does since they have entire aisles that are gluten free, and their labeling is unique too since, “We have a gluten free wellness key, orange circle with a G in the center and the words gluten free underneath,” said Trisha Kazacos, the Wegmans nutritionist. 

The label makes it easier for people to know if a product contains gluten or not. Wegmans has just opened a location off Midlothian Turnpike in Chesterfield, Va and they also have one in Short pump. A popular place to go to since it’s a huge place with a Pub, and there was the one just in Fredericksburg which is an hour and a half drive. 

The History Of The Color Black

Black is the color of the night

It’s one of my favorite colors, and it reminds me of the night. It’s worn at funerals when someone has died, and it’s one of the colors I wear the most out of all of them. I have been drawn to the color since high school. It reminds me of the unseen consciousness, the night, and mystery. It’s a color that reminds me of death and despair. Several gemstones come in black such as obsidian, hematite, and even onyx. I’m into studying metaphysical subjects, and there is a lot of information on the color black for it. There are many different names for it and it can also mean mysterious, sexy and sophisticated. It can also be a serious colors and conventional as well. It’s a complex color that can have many different meanings. Black is also the absence of color. It can make colors appear brighter too. It’s the opposite of white, and the first color to be used when painting pictures of night scenes. It’s the color of birds, snakes, and mice can be that color too. It’s the color that real life vampires wear the most. Black is one of those colors that make me think about the occult and witchcraft. It makes me think about the night, and all the creatures that reside in it. It makes me think about all the nocturnal creatures who make the dark their home. It’s a color that can stand for mystery, and I chose it since I could associate a lot of different aspects with the color black. It is my color anyway besides red and blue. I love those too.

Black is the color of rebellion to many young people, like people who are gothic wear all black, and when it’s combined with orange it is the color of Halloween. There is just so much to talk about that it’s not even funny. It was the first color used in cave paintings by the Native Americans. It is the color associated with banishing spells and cleansing negative energy. It’s a color I love to wear because when I was in the 7th grade I used to dress like an edgy punk, and on the days like Halloween I get to dress the way I used to. Legend has it that bad luck comes to people when a black cat crosses their path. It usually happens on Friday the 13th too. There are a ton of other meanings behind the color black since you call a black tie an event that requires a formal dress code. The phrase pitch black means no light or visibility is present especially when it comes to driving on a dark and stormy night. There are a ton of synonyms for the word such as charcoal, coal, ebony, raven, shadowy, dusky, and even pitch-dark. People can even be so angry they blackout, or their vision goes black. To some people the color black is associated with evil, and the unknown. Black can even represent strength. In black and white television the good guys are white, and the bad guys are black. Black widow spiders are black as well as panthers and even there are black holes out there that can suck up everything in space. The color black is also used in magic rituals too and their properties are: “Black: Return energy to senders, divination, protection, dark goddesses, time, chaos, the first stage of a working, the beginning of creation, North, winter, rebirth, wisdom, the number 8, infinity, destroy bad habits, rest, investigation and combats hyperactivity” (from “Silver RavenWolf the Ultimate Book of Shadows”). It has many different uses for the color in spells and rituals. 

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One of the things that I associate with the color black is depression a mental state of mind, since depression is the one disorder I have the most experience in dealing with, since I used to have it. After doing research on it, I had no idea how many types of depression there are out there. There are a ton of symptoms with it too, and at least it can be cured. It’s not a permanent state of mind either, and I would not want it to be like that either. This is the definition of it: “Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Also called major depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects how you feel, think and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. You may have trouble doing normal day-to-day activities, and sometimes you may feel as if life isn’t worth living” (article from Mayo Clinic). 

It can be treatable with the right psychological help, and a lot of artist have went through it. It’s one of the worst feelings in the world. I went through it after my engagement fell through, and it would have continued until I met someone who made me happy. That is how I got over that, and I’m happier now with someone worth being with. 

There are even gothic subcultures that wear the color black, and to some that is considered strange and different. Black is the color of the night, and the gothic subculture chooses the dark over the light. The color black is also a favorite for the vampires to wear since it makes them appear different from the rest of society. Black is used by the goth subculture as a way of expressing themselves. It can be a religion to some, and even a way of life too. It’s a pretty interesting history since the color black can be linked to anything dark and supernatural. Vampires dress with the color since they have long black capes and black pants and shoes. They did when Bela Lugosi dressed as Dracula. It has a very rich history, and so much can be said about the color. Even bats are black just like the caves they reside in. I could go on and on about vampires since I do research on them. They remind me of the color black since that is what they wear most of the time. There are real vampires out there. Vampires have greatly evolved since the first Dracula film, and the vampires in modern fiction and film are actually attractive, and they are better looking than the first ones. They have evolved so much that main stream society are not fascinated with them versus scared of them. I loved doing research on how much they have evolved one awesome vampire related show is “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” which is a show that stars Sarah Michelle Gellar as Buffy Summers who did not want the responsibility at first in being a vampire slayer. In the show it introduces a vampire with a soul which is a concept people have never seen till now. It’s also the first show with a kick ass female heroine, and it lasted for 7 seasons too. I loved every minute of it, and all the various characters and legends it introduced to it. Vampires are interesting creatures, and they have evolved since the first vampires were hideous. “The vampires of modern fiction and film are far removed from their hideous cousins in folklore. Creatures of great power and beauty, the vampires of modern myth seem to represent our culture’s quest for eternal youth. Seductive and forbidding, these night-dwelling creatures of fantasy also embody many of our darkest desires: forbidden sexuality, the power over life and death, the ability to surpass human limitations—freedom on every level, even from natural laws” (from the book “Vampires in their Own Words” edited by Michelle Belanger).

I think vampires are what I think about when I see the color black, and I love exploring the different subjects. It has fascinated me ever since I was a child. I love the supernatural, and studying myths and magic is what I link the color black to. Besides modern vampires there are also blood vampires and psychic energy vampires. They feed off psychic energy, and they are what we call the modern day vampires. It’s a really complex subject, and there are many books out there exploring different aspects of the vampire community. In the same book the definition of a psychic vampire is: “An individual who regularly and actively needs to take in human vital energy in order to maintain his or her physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual well-being” (from the book Vampires in their Own Words edited by Michelle Belanger). 

It’s really important to note that there are vampires in modern day, but it’s hard to find them unless you know someone who does. There are people who write books about the modern day vampire community, and they sometimes spell it like vampyre. Some vampires practice using witchcraft too. They are also divided into two main categories. “Sanguine vampyres are individuals who meet their needs by drinking blood. Pranic vampyres take living energy instead” (from the book “Vampires in their Own Words edited by Michelle Belanger”).

It’s interesting how different everything is, and I enjoyed learning a lot about the community. 

Then we get to the history of the color, and it has a huge history. It also has a ton of phrases dealing with it like having a black eye which deals with discoloration and damage to one’s eye. There is the black market too which deals with selling illegal goods. It can even be used to describe a person since someone who is black hearted to describe an evil person. Men in black is used to describe government agents, and blacklist means people to avoid, boycott, or punish. Then the word can also be used to blackmail someone which means to used a threat to cover something up or prevent someone from doing something. It’s a very powerful color, and it’s the symbol of grief too and death. Death is a natural part of life, and it’s a normal process hence why I link it to vampires since they can deal with death as well as life. It’s an important part of life since everything dies eventually. It’s sad though, and that is why people wear the color black while they grieve. 

The black widow spider also deals with death. Spiders are mainly black, and they spin webs in order to catch their prey. They are important animals when studying animal magick, and they are predators in the insect world. The black widow is the queen of all of them in the magick world. “Among spiders, the black widow spider is the High Priestess, the Dark Mother, weaving new fates for those who cross her path. Her magic and power is great, but she is also dangerous” (from the book “Animal Wise” by Ted Andrews). They are all important in the magical world. 

“All spiders are rich in lore and myth around the planet. They are the master weavers, weaving illusion, the life span, alphabets, and languages even magic. They signal an awakening of our creative energies” (from the book “Animal Wise” by Ted Andrews). 

They are important to magical working since they can help create and awaken creative energies when it comes to metaphysical studies. I love the thought of magic being a part of everyday life. They can also teach us about patience and waiting for things to come and we can learn something from all spiders out there since they can teach us how to integrate their qualities in our own lives. 

“All spiders are great economists. They spin their web; they do their work. And then they sit back and let the food come to them. Most spiders show us how to weave our energies so that the rewards of our efforts will come to us. The black widow spider reminds us to be patient, to stop pushing for our rewards. By pushing we are wasting efforts. She reminds us to let the benefits come to us in the time that is best for us” (from the book “Animal Wise” by Ted Andrews). This is why spiders can teach us a lot of lessons, and it can be applied to our lives. It’s one of the reasons why the black widow is so important, and it definitely embodies the color black really well.

 

Ten Questions Retail Workers Are Sick Of Hearing

Don’t ask these anymore just don’t

 

When you work retail you get the same questions over and over again. I’ve been working in retail for so long I’m tired of hearing it. Please, don’t ask these unless you have a good reason to.

  1. Do you have any more of the item in the back? No, we don’t and there isn’t a back to speak of it’s just an empty back room. If it’s clearance, we definitely don’t have any more since we are trying to get rid of it. If it’s empty we don’t have it at all. We don’t keep the good stuff in the back.

2.Do you work here? No, I just wear the nametag, vest, and uniform for fun…I do work there, and a smarter question would be do you work in this department. If I have the vest with the logo I obviously work there.

3.Do you carry vegetables? Yes, and it’s a stupid question since we are a grocery store. Please, use your head.

4.Are you open? Yes, we are since our store never closes except one day, and also if we answer the phone we are definitely open since someone answered the phone.

5.Do you carry this item since I saw it online/ another store? No, different stores carry different products. Not everyone will carry the same things since in store and online are two very different things.

6.Well, why can’t you do this since the other store does it? Then go there since different stores operate differently. Some have more relaxed rules then others. 

7.Where is the bathroom? There are signs at the front that say it, and I should not have to tell you where it is since it’s called looking.

8.Can I swipe my card now? Yes, you can I don’t need to tell you when to swipe your card since after I tell you the total you can swipe it..

9.Do you think they carry this item at a competitor? I don’t know since I don’t work there, and I’m not going to call a competitor to check for your item. 

10.Can you do me a favor? No, I’m not your friend and stop treating me like I am. Just ask me the question already. And no it’s not a quick question…

These are just some of the things I have been getting lately, and I’m sure there are more but a lot of it is common sense stuff. I obviously work there when I’m in my uniform wearing the name tag…

College Is Almost Over

Bye College, since I graduate this Fall…

I’m a Senior at Virginia Commonwealth University, and it’s hard to believe I’ll be done in December. All this hard work will pay off in the end too. These classes really teach me about what it’s like to be a journalist. It’s pushed me to the limit, and just when I thought I would drop out, I didn’t. I kept going knowing there will be a light at the end of the tunnel. I am going to miss it though since time in between class is spent at the Cabell Library, and eating at the various places around VCU. I’ll miss days where school is cancelled because of snow, and days where the professors are funny and worth going to. I’ll have all the skills I need to become a real journalist, and experience covering press conferences, chasing bills, and reporting on stories. I’ll miss taking random classes to boost my GPA in a variety of subjects. I can feel my college experience ending, and I could not be happier.

I’m not going to miss tests, essays, and sitting in class listening to lectures. I’m not going to miss being worried about getting a parking space, or fighting traffic since I commute. I don’t have to share my space with a roommate, and I have a car to drive so when I get out of my last class I can go straight home. I won’t miss having to take extra time for all these outside assignments work. I won’t miss those annoying bulky cameras for audio/video journalism. I hated carrying around those things since they were so heavy. I won’t miss going to school during the week day, and working all weekends. I won’t miss the crowds as I walk to and from classes, and I was happy to get a laptop so I don’t have to worry about finding a computer. I’ll miss the semesters where I ride to school and back with my mom. I won’t miss riding the campus connector when it’s crowded, and I won’t miss getting up early to enroll in class and get a parking space before everyone else. They say college is the best time of your life, but for me it was a pain in the ass. Maybe it would be different if I lived on campus, but commuting is harder than I thought. I loved some of my professors since they were awesome, and I’ll never forget one of them saying, “Get drunk with your editors.” I loved how sarcastic some of them were, and I’ll miss some of them. I won’t miss the meaner teachers since a few of them seemed to hate their jobs. I loved taking the fiction writing class, and it was fun writing my stories. I loved the Graphics for Journalism class since it allowed me to be creative. I do feel like I could have done better grade wise, and tried harder so I can be done sooner. I interviewed the owner of my favorite restaurant Wing Command, and did a video project on Celiac Disease. I’m able to get an internship doing online work which is what I want to do. I want to write full time, and maybe I can write books full time instead of part time. As time passes I can feel the ending of my college closer and closer. I could not be happier since I’ll have a degree soon, and get a full time job in the field I want to have. That is why I went to college since I want to become an awesome journalist. To do that I need a degree, and I put my mind to it and finally got it. 

 

Black Friday Is No Joke In Retail….

Retail sucks during Black Friday with crazy shoppers…

 

The most physically stressful time in retail would be Black Friday, and it’s only one time a year thank God. Retail is not all bad though, since it allows a person to earn money when they are in college, and some retail workers enjoy their jobs. It can make the hours go by fast when there is plenty to do and plenty of people to serve on a daily basis, especially on Black Friday since there are major sales going on, and a lot of items are at a low price. Some retailers are closed Thanksgiving day, but all of them are open on Black Friday. It’s the biggest shopping day of the year since companies make up spending on this day. Some of the businesses open very early, and it’s a holiday that people will camp out in front of just to get the big screen they have always wanted. Some retailers are open Thanksgiving, and they have sales going on an hour and some in the next. I’ve only worked twice during a shift like that, and it was crazy. It was crowded, people were running everywhere, and the clean up was a pain since they leaved items they didn’t want in random spots.

There are a ton of people who have a job that is physically demanding since it includes pushing carts, and moving items on pallets. It’s not easy working retail since there is, “Heavy lifting and long periods standing,” said Sheryl Mackey, a cashier at a box retailer. “There is harassment from supervisors if you are not smiling enough, no leaning on counters. You must clean work area even if you didn’t do it. Customers do complain about you. Especially if you are cleaning too much. Must work on Thanksgiving which is mandatory. They don’t even pay time and a half like they used to.”

A retail associate is even pulled to departments they have never worked before especially when the store is short staffed, “I never knew what I was going to do. Stock, cashier, or work in the deli,” said Richelle Cop, a cashier at a box retailer.

It’s hard work especially when there is work to do in the department like stocking items. One minute help is needed in lawn and garden which is at one end of the store the next the managers call the person to the register which is at the other end not a cake walk.

During Black Friday right before the event areas are roped off to prevent people from cutting in line, and a few customers got mad at me when I told them they could not go past the ropes. It was used to prevent people from cutting in line, and they thought they were special snowflakes and that they could go in the lines even though they are not allowed to. There are displays full of items that are on sale just for that day in red boxes that say, “while supplies last.” It’s chaotic as people navigate through the aisles grabbing items they want and even fighting the crowds. It can be stressful on the associates in charge of lines, and even ones on the floor. Customers can be rude that time of year especially when their item runs out, and they will yell at the associates for things they can’t control.

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“This job is too stressful. The long hours are brutal and people here piss you off. Customers are off the chain for no reason,” said Jordan Carter, a sales associate at the same store..

It can be pretty hectic too when the phones are off the hook, and all the fitting rooms are full leaving an associate to run to keep up with the work of serving the customers especially on a day like Black Friday where associates have to straighten fallen displays. It’s not as easy as just putting up clothes and scanning items. It involves problem solving, multitasking, and dealing with the general public and all their complaints.

Black Friday is a hectic day for people since there are sales at a specific time. Lines on that day are going to be long, and at the end of the shift it can tired a sales associate out. Overall, it can be a pretty crazy and rewarding to people who love the chaos of getting deals, and fighting the crowd to get the latest gadget. People will continue to camp out on Black Friday, and they will buy items as early as Thursday at 6pm on Thanksgiving if the deal is there. It’s a tradition that will continue as long as people are willing to spend their hard earned money in stores, and now retailers like Walmart, Amazon, and other stores are even offering the sales online so people won’t even have to fight crowds in the first place. They can buy items in the comfort of their homes, and in their pajamas which is what Black Friday is about.

 

My Thoughts While Reading A Good Book!

I love to read books, and novels take me to another world….

Thoughts I have While Reading a Good Book:

Reading is one of the things I’ve been doing since middle school, and I’ve never stopped just because high school ended. I read even to this day, and it’s an escape. Reading a good book is an immersive experience and here are my thoughts during it. 

    • This will be a good book to read since I’ve been waiting forever for it to come out…
    • Heck yeah, and it’s about magic and romance my favorite.
    • Okay…definitely like the main character now, and she sounds like me…
    • Yep, accidentally run into the school bully and the crush just like my luck.
    • I love her powers; it’s awesome. 
    • I love hearing the back story of where she came from. 
    • Really? You are really going to tick me off just get on with it already…
    • Please stop whining and admit it that she has power over you. 
    • Yep, people like her remind me why high school sucks…
    • So everyone is in on it? 
    • Really? I didn’t see that coming…
    • Finally they kiss and admit they have feelings together.
    • Great a few pages later She got in the way again…
    • Nope, didn’t see that one coming…
    • Didn’t see that one either…
    • Must keep reading eating can wait…
    • Going to the bathroom can wait just one more chapter…
    • Who is interrupting me reading this book?
    • Why are those idiots calling me?
    • Nope, I’d rather read…
    • Can you please pick him up so I can review the book I’ve been wanting to read?
    • I just want to read go away people. 
    • Yep, they finally find the solution…
    • Time for the final battle and save the person….
    • Wait it’s over already?
    • You mean I have to get back to reality?
    • Aww….
    • I can’t believe the book is over….
    • Time to find another one to read, and I always leave a review on Amazon and Goodreads!

 

  • Finding My Passion….

 

    • Never give up and find your passion!
    • It’s never easy to go after your dreams, and there will be people trying to get in your way. The best thing to do is to shut it all out, and go after your goals. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. You can do whatever you put your mind to. It may not happen overnight, but it will happen. I found my passion a long time ago, and it’s writing stories. Whether it’s fiction or non-fiction, I love writing them. They are a stress reliever, and they involve research and talking to people too. It’s something fun to do, and I’ve recently found out that journalism is fun too since I’m actually out in the field. It’s been a fun ride getting deep into my major, and I know it’s for me since it’s fun to find stories and cover them. I’m even getting over my fear of approaching people and crowds. I have anxiety at times, and this job helps with that. I also am upping my skills in using my audio recorder, filming videos, and writing short, clear stories. It will be fun to do this for a living since it has me out in the field. It also pushed me to produce stories, and talk to people. There is a lot I like about the field. It puts you out there for the public to see, and yes it can be scary but sometimes scary can be good. The important thing is to never give up. You never know where it will lead anyway. It can lead to the best times of your life if you pursue your passion. It’s satisfying and worth it in the end too. It’s very rewarding when you have a passion that will affect other people like reporting on issues, and writing about stuff that will make a difference. It will be worth it in the end. That is what college is about since it allows you to find your passion and make a career out of it. Also I had many people saying I could not do it, and I ended up proving them wrong time and again. I let if fuel me and when I had to repeat some of my classes. I never gave up. So never give up your passion or your dreams since you never know where it will lead you.

 

  • Situations Retail Workers Have No Control Over

 

    • Retail Workers can’t control inventory, and they are only human after all….
    • Retail customers think workers have power over every aspect of the company, and the truth is they don’t have control over certain things at all. They don’t control the prices of an item, since it’s up to the company. If something rings up a different price then the one on the shelf, a customer might have moved the item to the wrong place. Or maybe an associate was setting something up and they forgot to change it.
    • Either way I’m sick and tired of customers saying I changed the price when all I did was ring up their item. I did not change it at all, and it’s up to the company, not the associates and if it’s an issue with the system, then that is different. If an item rings up higher than the clearance tag, then that isn’t an issue. And the prices vary per store because of inventory. One store can put an item on clearance, and the other store is full price because store wants the stuff to sell to make room for more stuff. It’s not hard to get that different stores carry different products. That is why we won’t carry the thing you are looking for that you found a few years ago. We don’t carry certain products that other stores do. I’m sick and tired of people saying that we got rid of something when it’s not my fault. 
    • Retail workers don’t have control over policies either, and it gets annoying when people think we can break it just for them. It’s horrible for retail workers to be treated like dirt over policies their company has, and guess what? People try to get others to break it all the time. I can’t touch the products of another store if my store doesn’t carry it physically. I have had people bring in watches that my store doesn’t carry, and I can’t touch it at all. I’m not allowed too due to liability issues since if I break it the company has to pay for it. I’ve seen it happen all the time, and it’s company policy which is something I have no control over. Time and again people try to get me to work on it when we don’t carry it, and they use the excuse you did it last time. Or, they say they got it at the company when I know for a fact we don’t carry it. I’ve been working retail for 5 years, and I’ve seen it all. 
    • Also when the register messes up the cashier or sales associate has to fix it, and the customers think we have control over it. They don’t. I can’t help it if the registers act up since it’s a machine, and not even my fault. Customers think it’s something I did, and they even try to help me with it like they know my job better than I do. Nope. I don’t want your help fixing the machine. 

 

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    • Cashiers/Sales Associates don’t have any control if your card gets declined, and it’s not our job to keep track of your money. I don’t care if you have enough money since it’s not my fault you didn’t check to see if you had enough for it to go through. Not my fault. Stop looking at me for every little thing with the register since I don’t know everything. Also if you think I know everything then stop treating me like I’m stupid. 
    • Retail workers and sales associates have no control over merchandise. No, I don’t have the power to order items for you out of the cases unless they are personal orders. I won’t know what items come in till they come in. I don’t control how many products we receive either. If you want to get an item not in store then check online. The sales associate can only order special items not regular store inventory. We also can’t look up to see if another store has it. 
    • Retail workers don’t control the weather so stop complaining about things being wet if it’s raining. We can’t give directions from our store to where you are at since it’s called google. We are not going to know what is around everywhere either. We don’t control your coupons being expired so don’t take it out on us since it’s not our fault you didn’t pay attention to the date. We can’t control your mood, and don’t take it out on us. 
    • Store inventory is different for in store and online that it can take twenty-four hours for it to register. Again if it’s different for in store and online then it’s not our fault someone bought it, or put it on a random spot. Someone can actually have it in their baskets too. We don’t control items being out of stock either, and we know it’s popular but people buy stuff again not our control. We can’t help that someone bought your size since people buy stuff….
    • Some of these things are definitely out of a sales associates and cashiers control, and don’t take it out on them for it. It’s not their fault. They are only human after all, and yelling at them for things they can’t control is pointless since they can’t help it.

 

  • Characters Make The Story

 

    • Without characters a story would not be as strong
    • I’m a writer and a reader, and I’m beginning to notice just how important characters are in a novel. The characters give a voice to the story, and show things from their perspective. It’s interesting to see them develop over time, and they are people you want to root for. You are sad when they are sad, and happy when they are. They can kill a novel if the character is unlikeable or flat. They are part of the reason why readers turn the pages to find out what happens next. Their voice is important in the plot of the book, and good characters can drive the plot farther than anything else. I’ve read more books then I’ve written at this point. There are novels I can read over and over again because I like the characters and their story. Everyone has a story, and seeing it unfold over time is better than seeing it happen all at once.
    • In one of my books called “Angel Witch”, which is a book I’m writing right now, the main character Angeline is a worker at Kyle’s General Store. She is miserable and doesn’t want to work retail. She is half angel and half witch and will discover she has power to leave the very thing that makes her miserable. She is a character that is sassy, doesn’t take no for an answer, and has discovered her soulmate. People watch out for her since she is a special person. Another one is Scarlet who starts off as a witch and later turns into a vampire after the power of her bracelet turns her insane. She is the main character in my Scarlet Summers series, and I can’t wait to finish her journey. She has gone through a lot, and characters are what make the story.
    • There are some other series that have awesome characters in it like Kerrelyn Sparks first book “How to Marry a Millionaire Vampire.” I loved the characters called Shanna Whelan and Roman Draganesti, and their journey through the Love at Stake series. They are paranormal romances with vampires and shape shifters. There are 16 books in the series, and each one revolves around different characters. In later books you get to see some of them again since they are a part of the same world. I could reread those books over and over again since I love the story lines, and I love the characters. 
    • Another example is the movie I can watch over and over again which is “Deadpool.” I loved Wade Wilson’s character, and yes he was the anti-hero, but he was funny. He fell in love with Vanessa since they were so alike, and it was fun to see him go after the guy that turned his life upside down. I loved his humor, and even his past. 

 

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    • I could go on and on comparing movies, television shows, and even a ton of books with characters that stayed with me. Every character has a past, and they have a quest, or something they want in the book. It’s the thing that motivates them, and their plots bring it to life. Every story also has a theme or a lesson, and it’s important to note the characters bring it home. Without characters to populate books, movies, and television shows it doesn’t pack much of a punch unless you have a character worth rooting for.

 

  • Life Is Constantly Changing…

 

    • With the change it can be stressful…
    • I keep telling myself that on days where it can feel like life is too much, and that it can’t possibly be that stressful. We all feel it from time to time school, work, and life can all get in the way of each other. At times it can seem like there is not enough time or hours in the day for everything. It can seem like things are going so slow time wise, and there are times when it feels like time is flying by. For me I will be graduating by the end of the year which will rock, and then after school it will be different. It reminds me why life never stays the same, and things can change so fast it looks like it can change in the blink of an eye. School, work and repeat can seem like a never ending loop, but it will pass by because you can bet that life isn’t static. 
    • Life changes constantly. What you may be doing now can change and then you could be doing something completely different. You can be covering an event for school, and the next a retail worker working at a job that can seem endlessly boring. Life is never boring though, and it always changes. You can lose touch with some people and then some will come back into your life just as quickly. Things are temporary and just like stress it will change, and then become less stressful. It’s not fun to go through it either since stress can make you sick. That is why every time I get stressed I have to tell myself it’s temporary. Life is also what you make of it. Reading a good book can help ease away. Playing video games, and also focusing on one task at a time helps. Taking it day by day does too. Problems and issues can pile up and sometimes you have to compartmentalize things too. I have to do that since I have ADHD I get distracted easily too. It can be overwhelming and stressful for me to go from being in my house to the public in a room full of people. It can also be hard for me to multitask and keep track of things. The thing about life is it never stays the same. 
    • Life can be stressful with it’s never ending change of things, and it will be hard to keep up with the constantly changing world.

 

  • Why I Self-Publish My Books

 

    • A book is a book no matter who publishes it
    • Recently, I have read an article on the Huffington Post that made me pissed, since the article bashed self-publishing. It called self-publishing an insult to the written word. It does take time to hone your craft, and it’s not an easy thing either. It’s not just a credit card, and then bam a book. The article was written by Laurie Gough who is a journalist and travel writer. She did apologize for it, but she used the excuse that she was from Canada…Okay. It’s not just me that was mad about the article, and those supposed “gatekeepers” even rejected some of the most talented writers I know. More authors are going indie because the traditional deals aren’t working out for some of them. Some authors have publishing houses folding under, and some want to go their separate ways after their publishers go in a different direction. I have been self-publishing for 5 years, and I have two paperbacks and 4 ebooks. I did want to publish traditionally and get an agent, but when self-publishing took off, I discovered I would rather do it myself. While I was doing research about publishing traditionally, I read about authors getting fired by their publishers, and that you get less royalties with a traditional publisher then if you do it yourself. If you get a literary agent, they get 15 percent of the royalties too. I didn’t want to pursue it anymore, and I wanted to take control of things my way. I got a professional editor to edit my book and a professional cover artist to make the cover. I found it better for me to publish myself since I wanted the control aspect of it, and I didn’t want to be in a publisher’s time table. I do all the work myself, and that is okay since some of my novels are not traditional. I love writing novels that are different, and unique too. I also like the aspect of the reader deciding on what to read. Some indie authors are making a good living by publishing novels, and the article just reeks of jealousy. Self-publishing is now a viable option and there are a ton of books to help you get started. It’s something that makes the reader the gatekeeper in publishing. 
    • It really takes time to know how to write, and a lot of research. Self-publishing is not a short cut since it’s more work than publishing with a publisher. You are marketing, finding editors, talking to cover artist and beta readers. You have to pay out of pocket too, since the costs are up to you. I have had to pay for editors, cover art, and recently I’m going to try Vellum which is a software that beautifully formats ebooks. It’s a good time to be an indie author since it helps you build a fanbase, and the key is to keep publishing books since it’s a career to develop over years. You have to talk to other authors to make connections, have a website and develop an online presence.It’s not like being traditionally published since you can upload an ebook and make it live in a few days provided you are done with formatting and there are no issues in creating the book. You get to decide the price of the book too since you can make it as cheap or expensive as you want. A traditionally published novel can come in hardback, paperback, and ebook. There are some who even make audio books, and they can be more expensive than the indie ones. Twitter also is a good place to talk to other authors, and I love going there since there are a ton of authors giving advice on self-publishing. It’s a good time to be a writer in this day since there are more options for readers especially with the unique books. I don’t like it when people call it an insult since writing books no matter if it’s done with a publisher or if you do it yourself all has one thing in common. They are all stories. They can move people, and being able to publish books that readers enjoy is more worth it then anything else. Also some books published by indie authors are better then the cookie cutter traditional books some people put out. Some of them publish on their own to explore their worlds, and they may not fit the mold. They don’t have to fit the mold at all. I hate it when people assume just anyone can publish since it’s not a shortcut to getting rich. It’s more than a job it’s a career, and one that will be good to have. It is a passion and putting words on the page to affect people’s lives is the best part about it. I love the option of publishing books myself, and having everything rest on me. It’s something I want to be the rest of my life. I can’t think of anything else I would rather do. Amazon has Kindle Select, and that is a boon for some authors and it can give some books the push they need to make it to a best seller status. It’s so popular there are ton of people writing about their books, and how to get more noticed. Ebooks are not expensive either, and that is why some readers are drawn to it. There are authors with huge fan bases, and they make money publishing themselves. It’s a dream come true to them, and to me since I would love a work at home job making books and creating words. It takes perseverance and the ability to not give up. I would never change it for the world either, and that is why indie publishing rocks. It’s about readers taking chances with authors, and some of them don’t pay attention to the publisher but to the author. If they love the story they will buy it regardless if the author did it himself or herself, or if they were published by a publisher. It doesn’t matter who publishes the book, because people love to read stories. I would never change a thing since I love the fact that I can pay an editor, get the cover, and put it up for sale on my timetable. It’s something I would want to do the rest of my life, and I can go far with it since I have many books in store.

 

  • Lessons I’ve Learned In Retail

 

    • Retail taught me a lot….
    • There are so many things I have learned while working retail. It’s not as easy as people think it is, and that is one of the things I thought when I first started. It’s not bad for a part time job, especially since you need something to build your resume. It’s something temporary to get you where you need to go. It can be the rest of your life if you enjoy it. However, it’s not for me permanently. I’m just using it to get through college. It teaches you how to deal with people, and problem solve since everything that goes wrong means it’s up to you to solve it. The customers treat you like you know everything, and at the same time they think you don’t know anything. The customer thinks the sales associate is supposed to wait hand and foot on them. It doesn’t mean that, but you have to act like it is. 
    • Retail customers can also be pretty nasty to you just because they can, and in that case the customer is not always right. Retail gives you the ability to be in contact with other people, and to deal with many different personalities. Doing the same thing day after day though can get boring, and especially if you work there long enough then you have seen and heard it all. You have to learn how to multitask because you will be in charge of two departments at once, and sometimes even the customers expect you to wait on two at the same time. It sucks when they do that since it’s not easy to wait on two people at once, because you have to keep track of it. They also try to tell you how to do your job when they have never worked retail before. It teaches you to treat the person on the other side of the counter well since you know the struggle.
    • When you get hired, they never tell you that you will be in other areas, and that the managers can put you where ever they want to. You can be in one area, and then they will want you in another. The customers do have a habit of treating you like you are stupid sometimes, and when they have issues describing an item they will make it like you are stupid to them when they suck at describing it. It can be a very draining experience at times. Long hours for very little pay, and people who constantly run you ragged. It’s not for everyone either. It made me who I am though, and I’m an author so it helped me with my writing too. 
    • I do recommend trying retail out when you are just getting experience so you will know what it’s like having a job. People are messy and they don’t clean up after themselves. They are so lazy they will put items in random spots, and then blame you for every little thing. It is a steady paycheck provided you don’t do anything stupid like steal or work off the clock. It gave me some people skills, and the ability to listen since people will tell you their stories. You also have the ability to act like you are listening when really your mind is somewhere else. Retail can be a source of entertainment too. Between the drama with the customers and managers it can be hilarious when they blow stuff out of proportion. It teaches you how to let stuff roll off you, and to let things go. If you stress about every little thing it can lead to high blood pressure. It did give me some lifelong friends, and people whom I love working with. There are good and bad points to every job since I love some of the customers that come through my line. You can always tell who works retail by the way they treat you. If they are nice then they understand what it’s like. It also teaches you how to keep calm in pressure situations, and I would not change it at all. It taught me a lot of valuable lessons I can use in other jobs, and I would recommend people to work retail just for the on the job experience.

 

  • Why Retail Is Mentally Draining

 

    • Working retail is not a walk in the park….
    • Retail is not easy, especially on the mind. It can be draining to work at a retail store where thousands of people come through a line, and then add to the fact that the cashier has to be friendly to angry people.
    • “The people are very unhappy and rude,” said Richelle Cop, a cashier at a big box retail store. 
    • “The customers in retail complain a lot,” she said of her cashiering job. Some shifts can be long when there are no items to put away, as is the case with Nancy McCue, who is a sales associate at the same store. By the end it’s draining to the point where a person can crash after work. 
    • “It takes you two hours to unwind from the over-stimulation, especially if you work nights,” said McCue, “Research indicates specific parts of the brain are utilized for certain tasks.” 
    • Some jobs require scanning and bagging items the entire day, and some involve standing and running around eight hours a day. Sometimes the shifts will be five hours, like when the company has to cut hours, and then someone with 40 hours will wind up with 32 instead. When a department is short staffed it can be even more stressful since it involves running around answering questions, and cleaning up after messy customers. It’s not as easy as folding clothes, and scanning items day after day. There is a rule to greet the customer when they get ten feet in front of you. 
    • It’s difficult mentally dealing with several departments at once since a sales associate has to answer questions, trouble-shoot register issues, and solve situations with a manager if needed. 
    • “The stress is enough to make a person scream,” said Jessica Jefferson, a sales associate at a retail store, “Retail can be stressful to the point you drink yourself to sleep,” said Jefferson. “Managers thinking you are blind and tell you to do your job. Some days, if I get pushed to that point, I will scream out of the blue.” 
    • Even though it’s mentally draining there are outlets that help see the humor in retail, thanks to social media. Websites like “Retail Hell Underground” offer an outlet for sales people to tell their stories about rude customers and even telling some of them off. Then there is a podcast called “The Retail Rant” which talks about the many facets of retail, and the humor in it. Books called “Retail Hell How I Sold my Soul to the Store” by Freeman Hall tell the mental horrors a person working retail has to deal with on a daily basis. There are Facebook groups that will let a person vent about it, and there are actually people who understand the craziness that goes on. 

 

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  • One example of this is Retail Hell Underground and it lets people who work retail vent about their job. 
  • Freeman Hall author of the book “RetailHell,” and site owner of “Retail Hell Underground”: “RHU was created in 2007 and the words ‘social media’ didn’t exist as far as I know back then! lol MySpace was where it all started. Facebook didn’t start becoming popular until 2009-10… (I believe it’s birthday was 2004)The way I started the RHU blog was by connecting it to MySpace. On myspace there were groups of people for work. They were by company or group. So like there was Macy’s, Old Navy, Retail Sucks, etc…so I would send invitations to all of these people for the myspace page and the website. Then they started sending in their stories and ranting about their jobs. This gave them a chance to have a voice and also get support from one another.” 
  • Freeman said, and he is also author of the book “Retail Hell: How I sold my Soul to the Store,” “Social media in today’s world has made it possible for anyone with a phone, device, or computer to voice their opinion and get instant feedback! Twitter, Facebook, youtube, reddit, instagram…they have all become platforms for people to share their experiences either publically or privately with a group and get immediate comments and this gives people a chance to vent and get support from others. On the flip side, it also gets people fired from their jobs if they are identified for ranting about their company. Since there is no way I could have created something where folks could post instantly, RHU has changed over the years and we now post stories from social media platforms like reddit, tumblr, facebook, and the news as we don’t get as many submissions. Folks can post to twitter, reddit, and facebook and get immediate results. I created RHU to give customer service workers a voice and also have a place where they could have a chuckle or two..Interestingly, RHU is turning 10 next year!”
  • Unwinding at the end of the day after a stressful shift helps. Sometimes there are people who work retail that don’t let anything bother them. 
  • “Some days it is mentally stressful somedays it isn’t. It depends on how I feel,” said Iris Judkins, a fitting room associate at the same store.
  • It’s also mentally stressful, “Because the general population treats like you’re less than human most days. Not always, not every customer is like that, but the bad is piled on a lot harder than the good can dig you out of it. Plus, standing for eight to 16 hours at a time really hurts the arthritis.” Said Shannen Heard, a gas station clerk who does a little bit of everything. 
  • It can be draining dealing with customers, coworkers, and especially, “all the bullshit co workers and bosses,” Said Amanda Rousseau, who was a cashier at a box retailer. “The ones who expect the impossible from you and punish you when you don’t complete it.” 
  • All in all retail is not for everyone, and it’s not a job to have for a very long time. The turnover rate is high due to poor management, horrible scheduling, and people who use you as a verbal punching bag over stock which an associate has no control over. A sales associate can’t special order stock, and they don’t keep everything in the back. 
  • Although it can be stressful, social media has given an outlet to retail people everywhere, and they can use it to vent about their job. People submit stories regularly to the site, and even Youtube videos allow people to talk about what it’s like to be a cashier, sales associate, and talk about the customers that made their day hell.

 

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