I write. I wander. I read. I remember.

I started writing my first novel at age eight. It was about a family of pencils that came alive at night and wandered around the classroom having various adventures. I was several chapters in when a well-meaning adult asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up.

“I want to be a writer. In fact, I’ve already started writing my first novel,” I told her.

“Oh, that’s so cute. Being a writer is hard work you know. Most people never make it.”

This was news to me. I had assumed the only tough part about writing was plot…


And other fun animal defecation facts to trot out at dinner parties when you want to liven up the conversation

Image by Rebecca Tregear from Pixabay

You might already know that koalas carry their babies in a pouch just like kangaroos but did you know a Koala baby's first solid food is their mother’s poop?

This is the kind of startling information you want to have handy in your back pocket for when the conversation starts to lag at your next work social function or neighborhood cocktail party.

The animal kingdom is full of fun tidbits like this you can trot out to the delight and amusement of your fellow dinner party guests. You’ll know you’ve scored a winner if people stop, fork halfway to their…

The classic song, “Lean on Me” has all the answers

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

“We all need somebody to lean on,” Bill Withers sings in his hit single Lean on Me.

Shoulders come in different sizes and carrying capacities. Lean on the wrong shoulder or too heavily on a previously welcoming one and you risk collapsing to the ground when a callous or overburdened person shrugs you off.

How do you find safe shoulders and how can you be a safe shoulder for others?

Withers wrote his hit song after leaving small town USA for the big city of Los Angeles. The song reflects the importance and power of people being there for each…

Why do we always worry about the wrong threats?

Photo by Tim Nieland on Unsplash

Aircraft of various sizes and descriptions bearing important world leaders and their entourages are streaming above and the Meerkats are concerned. What is this new threat overhead? Best send the alarm and run for cover.

“The Meerkats are quite worried by the uptick in air traffic due to the G7,” explained the interpreter as some meerkats stood sentry duty and others pawed at her boots hoping to find a stray mealworm or other of the treasures she had recently strewn around their habitat.

“Here at the sanctuary they are protected from most predators but they still take turns standing watch…

Yes, I reply but know this…

Photo by Ignacio Amenábar on Unsplash

“Maybe I should start writing on Medium,” my friend says.

“Yes! You absolutely should!” I reply enthusiastically.

“How often would I have to write to make money?”

Ouch, I take it all back. Don’t write on Medium if that is your first question.

Can you make money on Medium? Yes

Will you make money on Medium? Maybe

How much can you make on Medium? Depends

These are not stupid questions to ask. They are exactly the questions I asked before I signed on. But they weren’t the only questions to ask or even the best questions. What I really wanted…

Your answers will determine the best methods to pursue

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Would you like to be rich? Who wouldn’t?

The basic strategy is simple and universal. Make substantially more money than you spend. But how exactly you put this into practice is unique to you. Advice is only useful if it fits your style, circumstances, and goals.

To get rich you’ll need to answer some basic but deep questions. How you answer these questions determines what methods and actions are going to work well for you.

What do I consider rich?

When I was a kid, I used to think, ‘Man, if I could ever afford all the ice cream I want to eat, that’s as…

Having my earnings from writing go into a separate account is brilliant

Photo by Paul Felberbauer on Unsplash

When I started writing online I opened a new account in my name only. It felt cleaner and safer for both of us to isolate online earnings from our combined finances. Plus we live in the UK but do most of our banking in the US. Having a Pounds Sterling account with easy to spend local money would be handy if I ever earned anything.

I started writing and the money began trickling in. It is beginning to flow a little bit now. Not a flood by any means but some cold hard cash readily accessible on a debit card.

If so, why am I never invited?

Image by Hier und jetzt endet leider meine Reise auf Pixabay aber from Pixabay

“Do drop by on Saturday evening. We are having a simple cocktail party. Just a few friends.” This is what I imagine my elegant friend saying to me. I’d arrive in my casual yet simultaneously sophisticated frock.

“What’s your poison?” her husband would say to me with a smile gesturing to his well-equipped bar cart. “Old Fashioneds are my specialty but I can whip up anything you like.”

Parties I actually attend are more likely to go like this.

“We’re having folks over for a BBQ on Saturday. I hope you can come and if you want to bring along…

Whose side am I on? I want to be Switzerland

Photo by Ronnie Schmutz on Unsplash

Michael Burg, MD (AKA Medium Michael Burg) has started a war and he’s trying to pull in combatants from all sides. I tried to resist the siren’s song but…

A poet I am not said she

Nor likely so ever to be

I think not in rhyme

I haven’t the time

This isn’t my genre you see

So why am I en’tring this battle?

Who cares but a wit for my prattle?

It’s cause I got tagged

Your prey has been bagged

I meekly line up just like cattle

D Burg must you be such a temptress?

Oh, why ever…

Lessons from actor Joshua Malina’s Tweet

Image by wal_172619 from Pixabay

As a creative who is also trying to earn a living, you are always walking a balance beam between aiming to please people and letting comments bounce right off your thick skin.

So I laughed in delight when I stumbled on this Twitter reply from Joshua Malina.

Joshua Malina joined the cast of the popular TV series, The West Wing in the fourth season with his character Will taking the job previously held by the popular and much better known Rob Lowe. Fans had opinions at the time and still have opinions now nearly twenty years later. Enough so…

Mary DeVries

Writing, wondering, and wandering across three continents. Living, Learning, and Laughing along the way. https://tinyurl.com/MaryDeVries

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