Something’s In The Water (Flash Fiction)

It was mid-July and Sophie was standing in front of the window fan in her third-floor walk up. It didn’t work anymore, but it provided a barrier to get fresh air since she only had storm windows and no screens. The city was alive in a way she had never remembered it. When she was growing up, Albany was a big city, but it wasn’t New York. Now it was four times the size of the five boroughs.

When hell broke loose everyone headed north and there was no unoccupied land in upstate NY.  As farmland was neglected, people started settling into RV & tent cities that reached out to the horizon. There wasn’t one halfway liveable apartment left vacant and all of the houses took on new roles as modern day longhouses when extended families that found each other and stayed together.

Sophie remembered trying frantically to get ahold of her parents and her sister to no avail. She could still hear the beeps & the robotic operator’s voice, “The person you are trying to reach is not available.” The phone lines cut off right after the fifth time she had tried. The only thing Sophie could think of was to make sure she was stocked up on necessities and stay put.  If they were alive, her family would find her in the same apartment she had been living in for 5 years. That was 2 years ago.

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A Flawed Approach to Justice

Every band of people, every society, every nation has some sort of rules or laws that their citizens are bound by. These rules and laws are created using human logic, which has proven to err. Further, all human logic is not the same, it can vary from human to human, equal only in that it is human logic and not another species’.
We also have morals, a person’s inner conscious of right and wrong. Morals are learned, but how they’re interpreted by a person also rests upon the type of personality that human is born with. People are not born intrinsically good or bad, yet in learning how to eat, talk, walk, act in public, and how to live in general, our personalities allow us to be shaped by our environments, good and bad.
The United States’ laws are impacted by our human logic and have molded the way our justice system works, which in turn helps form the way our society acts. Over the past couple centuries, we have needed to add and enforce more laws as new technologies emerge, new crimes have been committed and as some of our citizens have taken corruption to a whole new level.
After the Constitution and Bill of Rights were written, potential new laws were next. The rights of citizens and governments were covered and now it was time to handle some bureaucratic issues. The first bill to be passed into law was an act managing the time and manner of oaths being taken when a person is sworn into Senate or Congress. This decision followed the logic of a patriarchal society with a group of white men calling the shots. This was white male logic.
Pressing forward through the decades, human rights became increasingly more important to address, technologies were constantly being upgraded, and we now had lawyers (mostly white men, again) studying these laws with the intent of using them to their advantage to attain their desired verdict. The jobs of lawyers started taking on more tasks akin to searching for loopholes, than of helping to protect our civil rights and liberties.
We try to choose officials that will best represent us and the way we feel our society should be governed. The officials we elect then become our new lawmakers, amending and passing laws in an effort to end corruption and stop criminals from skirting the law, but the real outcome is just more laws in the hopes of covering everything. Many of us still haven’t realized this isn’t working.
Representative Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez recently explained how it’s completely legal for someone to be corrupt and still hold power in the government. And while the video of her went viral, it was forgotten about by the next week and nothing has been done about it. Let me repeat that. It is legal to be corrupt and still hold power in the US government, yet nothing has been done. Do people just not care?

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Content Cucumber Writing Sample: 6 Essential Tools For Marketing Your Small Business Online

Content Cucumber invited me to write a sample piece & provided the formatting sample and topic. If you’re looking to expand your business online, it’s a quick read and might provide you with some information you didn’t know you needed to know.

As a professional novice, I welcome any suggestions that you feel would help me become a better writer. Please keep in mind that the format and topic was provided by Content Cucumber. The requested sample piece was directed to be 600-800 words. At 796 words there was still a lot of information I wanted to include, but couldn’t if I was going to stay in the word count. Comments on what to do in those cases would also be appreciated.

 

 

6 Essential Tools For Marketing Your Small Business Online

In today’s busy world many consumers are using the internet to supply their needs. So, whether it’s allowing to place an order online for pickup/delivery, or providing goods/services from your business, you can tap into a vast source of internet clients to grow your business. And while you’ll find some similarities in techniques between marketing online and those in your brick & mortar, you’ll be using different tools.  The following is a compilation of 6 Essential Tools For Marketing Your Small Business Online.

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NY Times Op-Ed Response

Dear Nicholas Kristof,

I read your op-ed: Thank God for Canada! Our boring neighbor is a moral leader of the free world. It was well written, as it should be for a column in the NY Times. Your points were well thought out, made a lot of sense, and I agree that more people need to “wake up,” as you like to say, but there’s just one thing: you’re included in those who need to “wake up.”

Don’t get me wrong, I am not giving you backlash, only trying to explain a little further beyond your scope of thinking. It’s a good thing that you are woke enough to point out to your readers how Canada is emerging as the world’s moral leader, but how long did it take you to get there? Many of us have known this to be true for a long time now. They are the world’s moral leader and have been.

The Hulu show, The Handmaid’s Tale, has seen a lot of American’s comparing the state of our government to that of our future government through the lens of the show; A group of pro-life conservatives overrunning the White House, and Canada excepting US refugees. This helped direct Americans towards the original show, and then the book of the same name, written by Canadian poet & novelist, Margaret Atwood, in the early 1980s, and published in 1985.

So now I’m pressed to ask, if Canada is only now becoming the moral leader of the world, is Atwood a Canadian psychic? Probably not. Authors write what they know, as I’m sure you are aware of from your 18 years as a columnist for The Times.

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Copy & Advertising Examples

Hi there!

Below are some examples of how I advertised with my old business. This blog post is somewhat my portfolio for copy & advertising. I’ll be adding more as I complete further examples & if I gain permission to share what I’ve done for others. Enjoy and thanks for taking a look.

-Elizabeth Miner (Twitter: @Lizseeds0311)

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Gettin’ Back Into It: A Pictorial Journey In My New Beginning

About 3 months ago I found my old paints from making ornaments the Christmas before.  There was a lot and I decided that I wanted to teach myself to paint.  I’ve always been kind of creative and like to draw/sketch with charcoals and chalk, but I never really got into painting.  Putting a little snowman on a globe is a lot easier than painting on canvas and having it actually look like something.

So, I decided to get back into being artsy fartsy and paint some stuff.  The following is a journey from my first eyeball sketch to loosen up through a couple pieces that really mean something to me. (And hopefully mean something to you too.)

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As you can see, these are the first three pieces I completed after my art store shopping spree.  My little brother bought me an easel for Christmas so I was off to the races!

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Santa’s Spirit

Introduction:

I began writing this book for my sons, and for every other girl and boy that was, or will struggle with their belief in Santa Claus.  There has always been a line drawn between those that believe in Santa and those that don’t believe. Many children grow up believing in Santa only to have their beliefs come crashing down around them.  Whether it’s because a classmate or older sibling tells them that Santa’s not real, or because they don’t get what they wrote on their Christmas list, every child stops believing at some point, or at the very least questions their belief.  And while I may be just some adult writing a book, I need you to know something about me; I’m a believer. “Why?” you might ask. Well, I’ll tell you why in this book. I know some stuff and I want you to know it too. I’m tired of there being a yes or no answer when a child is asked if they believe.  Sometimes things just aren’t that simple, so I decided to share what I know.

 

Now, when I started writing I thought I was just going to clear up the whole believing or not question, but I’ve realized that I can’t stop there.  I discovered that no one knows Santa’s full story anymore, and that’s such a shame.  So, while this book may leave you with some answers, it’ll also leave you with more questions, but please don’t fret.  Your questions will be answered, I just can’t fit everything into one book and Santa’s story is kind of broken up by age appropriateness.  For example, if you had read this book when you were 5 years old, you would have been completely lost. But now that you’ve grown up and are hearing from friends or siblings that, “Santa doesn’t exist,” you’re old enough for this part of the story.  And please keep in mind that just because someone doesn’t exist now doesn’t mean he never did…

 

So now is the time where you can take a brief pause and get ready for a long story.  Grab your hot cocoa and popcorn, a nice, comfy blanket and get comfortable. Go on, I’ll wait…

 

Okay, you’re back.  Here we go!

 

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A silence filled the air and he was afraid of being seen.  The freshly fallen snow acted as an insulator and you could hear for what seemed like miles away.  But he had done this many times before, seventy to be exact, so he knew he would be okay. Santa was out delivering toys to good girls and boys.  He filled their stockings and had a quick snack, always leaving a thank you note and some crumbs. It was another long Christmas night, but no matter how tired he was, Santa pushed on.  He knew there were children fast asleep dreaming of what he had left them under the tree.

 

When he got home he took off his boots and shook the snow off his suit’s coat.  Mrs. Claus already had the fire roaring and his hot cocoa steaming on the stand next to his chair.  She knew he would be freezing coming back from this one. All nestled in, it was around 7 o’clock that morning when Santa got the first of many visions as all the world’s children began to wake up and see what awaited them.20181216_090505

 

You see, Santa was magic.  How else could you explain wiggling his nose to shoot up the chimney or through your vent?  And when he got home every Christmas morning he had visions of children shredding wrapping paper and wearing bows on their heads.  It always gave him a warm feeling in his belly, seeing all those smiling faces, which is where his “Ho Ho Ho,” originally came from.

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