Thank you for checking to see "What Is On My Mind Today!" You will find a wide range of things interest me and I hope you will add your comments too! I look forward to reading what you have to say.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Melissa Newman, Appalachian Fiction Writer

What's On My Mind TodayMy friend's mom is Melissa Newman and she is an Appalachian Fiction Writer.  In her past career she was an award winning journalist, editor and publisher. 

Out of the goodness of her heart, she is taking time away from her visit with her daughter to enlighten other journalists, screenwriters and writers at Cleveland State University. 

Last year, I had the honor of meeting Jeanette Walls, another former journalist who is now a creative, non-fiction writer.  She achieved success with her autobiography, The Glass Castle.

Rita Cosby, a broadcast journalist and successful author was just at Cleveland State less than two weeks ago discussing her father's life, her Polish heritage and the journey she made with her dad back to Poland. 

These ladies are just a few of many current and former journalists who have become successful as authors.

As everyone knows, I too, am a journalist and an aspiring fiction writer, praying to one day publish a book.

But I would like to take this time to thank each of them and anyone who shares their knowledge and craft with others, especially students. 

Thank you and keep on writing.

(I am ordering Sister Blackberry tonight, in hopes it will arrive before Ms. Newman's visit.  Everyone who knows me, knows if I get two days it'll be read way before she makes it to Cleveland!)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Individual Drive

What's On My Mind Today:  Everyone has a passion for something.  Whatever it is, people usually put their 110% into it. 

For me it's my writing, journalistic and creative fiction writing equally, and secondly, my immense love of fishing. 

I read as many things as I can on how to write the best articles and stories, as well as read as much fiction as I can.  I track the fish, monitor ODNR (Ohio Department of Natural Resources) fishing reports, check water levels, follow new techniques by watching all the fishing pros on their TV shows, etc.  To some this may seem extreme, but it's not because that is what I love. 

Some people love the Cleveland Browns and are DIE HARD fans or sports in general.  They follow everything, even when they are losing.  They never give up on their team(s). 

All of this is great if you can incorporate those drives into something productive.  Using sports as an example, the former editor of  The Cleveland Stater, Daniel Wolf, took his love of football and turned it into a paying job!  Wolf recently started a new website, www.nationalfootballauthority.com.  (For you football junkies, it's an amazing website.)

I use Wolf as an example...why don't more people take that same kind of initiative?  Because that is what drives him...so what drives you? 

Let me know what you personally have done because of your 'Individual Drive'.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Budget and Ohio's State Universities

What's on My Mind Today:  The changes in our state government will have a serious impact on students attending state universities.  For whatever reason, I am not sure why education of citizens is not a priority for everyone.  The people who make the decisions for the state must realize the benefits it will gain by having an educated group of people voting. 

But maybe that is just the problem.  In recent years, educating all has not been on the agenda.  Oh, they have done a good job of making it appears so but "No Child Left Behind" is just what that program does.  It allows schools and parents to make decisions on if a child should be promoted...not necessarily on the basis of the child's readiness to move on.  Which is why we have a country full of high school graduates which are barely literate. 

Then you have the people who have struggled to graduate and then there is no funding for them to go to school.  Everyone says the children are our future, they are but why are they the ones being slighted in the process.  The concept of state universities was to provide a quality education to the people of its state.  But if the upcoming cuts to Cleveland State University are any indication of what other state universities in Ohio will face, watch out.

As students, we are a wide ranging, and diverse group with power, if we choose to use it.  What are going to do to ensure your educational funds are protected?  CSU has already lost a 35-year program, Continuing Education...this program was an integral part to assisting professionals with continuing with their educational goals, mostly staying current with licensing requirements. 

We need to make it our business to make sure state universities and our schools in general give us what we need.  SOUND OFF!