Some Thoughts on Hope, Cynicism, and the Stories We Tell Ourselves | Brain Pickings


Here is some food for thought once again from a wonderful site called Brainpickings




To live with sincerity in our culture of cynicism is a difficult dance — one that comes easily only to the very young and the very old. The rest of us are left to tussle with two polarizing forces ripping the psyche asunder by beckoning to it from opposite directions — critical thinking and hope.”

“Critical thinking without hope is cynicism. Hope without critical thinking is naïveté.”


Some Thoughts on Hope, Cynicism, and the Stories We Tell Ourselves | Brain Pickings.

28 (Better) Things No One Tells You About Publishing | Scott Berkun


As I was reading through my many publications I subscribe to, I came across this interesting post by Scott Berkun called 28 Things No One Tells You About Publishing.

This post has been reblogged quite a few times, as I have seen it reblogged on other articles I have read. No doubt! It’s a great article about the writing business, beneficial to newbies and older writers alike.


Here is just one of his statements that made me feel better about my own writing .  . .

“Some books, like The Great Gatsby or Moby Dick, don’t become popular until decades after publication.”


28 (Better) Things No One Tells You About Publishing | Scott Berkun.

“Love–In Other Words” – Harper Lee

thoughts on

Something to chew on while awaiting Lee’s newest book to be published this July.



A lot of controversy is stirring around the publication of this book as it was originally said that Lee’s wishes were to never publish another book. Her sister had looked after her and her business for years and has passed. There is a lot of heresay that Lee’s lawyers and publishers are orchestrating the publication of this book without her proper consent, other articles state the contrary. Lee actually wrote this book, Go Set A Watchman, before she wrote To Kill A Mockingbird.


Originally written in the mid-1950s, Go Set a Watchman was the novel Harper Lee first submitted to her publishers before To Kill a Mockingbird. Assumed to have been lost, the manuscript was discovered in late 2014. Ironically, her first novel written in the fifties, took place some twenty years later in Scout’s life as she revisits Maycomb, Alabama county.

There are quite a few comments on the mysterious findings of this old manuscript and many articles written on the topic. Here is one link amongst many that talks about the discovery of the manuscript.

Below you can read one of Lee’s early nonfiction articles written about love. It was published in Vogue in 1961.

Harper Lee’s take on love –  By Nelle Harper Lee “Love–In Other Words”.

Is There Such a Thing as Too Much of a Good Thing?


Many times we find ourselves daydreaming about being somewhere else, sometimes anywhere except the place that we reside in. Sure everyone loves to dream about the ‘What ifs’. What if I won a lottery? What if I could live anywhere in this world I so chose? What if {insert your fantasy here}.

On my recent vacation to the Caribbean, I was fortunate to be able to spend the day with my brother and sister-in-law in St. Kitts. St. Kitts was one of the many ports my ship docked at and Rory and Katy are fortunate enough to be out of the damning cold winter, snowbirding in St. Kitts.

We had preplanned our getting together and spending the day together for when we docked there. So we met up at the fabulous port in front of the designated store we chose to connect at.

st kity 3 of us_wm-1 new


It had been well over five years since I had last visited that island. I was delighted to find how much more they had begun to develop the island. The port was beautiful to look at and had a multitude of duty-free stores built. In fact, I could have had no problem spending the better part of the day shopping in the port alone, only mere yards away from where our ship docked.

st kitt port

It was a gorgeous hot and sunny day. We had two of the best island tour guides in Rory and Katy as they have spent a lot of time there through the years, and years before that, Katy had lived on that island.

My brother drove us around the island, showing us various points of interest, especially a paradise area where they are contemplating buying a villa (pictured below). From his interest in real estate there, my brother has made some influential contacts and friends which afforded us the opportunity to spend a beautiful afternoon at a private clubhouse resort.


villa vue

We spent the afternoon at this magnificent paradise, secluded away from what I felt was civilization. The grounds were impeccable with the palm trees almost strategically located so as to allow one to catch some rays, yet not swelter from the heat with the shade and breezes they provided. The pool was so gratifying with the perfect temperature to cool our bodies. Before you entered the swimming pool, there was an ankle-deep wading pool which led to the swimming pool where rested some beach chairs to take in the sun, enabling us instant access of the water to splash ourselves when necessary. The edge of the swimming pool flowed into a trough below and a few yards past that was the Caribbean ocean.

st kitt

st kitt paradise

The whole experience was breathtaking. Katy and I walked down a little grass path just passed the trough in front of the ocean. The ocean sparkled in the hot sunlight, displaying its various shades of turquoise. The view was spectacular and commanded one to just stand there and take it all in. Katy and I chatted about the possibility of them buying a property on the island in that particular area.

st kitt view

With all the stillness and serenity of what I was seeing, I tried to visualize myself living there. Surely this paradise would make a perfect writing haven. Then I began to wonder if perhaps after a few months of the quiet, would I begin to get bored?


I posed that question to Katy while we gazed at the ocean. I asked, “Could there be too much of a good thing? I questioned her about whether or not she could live a slower pace of life with not as much to do on an island. I thought about the perks of living there: sunshine, warmth, beauty, lots of writing and reading time, but would that be enough for me?


Some people get bored easily. Some need action around them. And many enjoy the quiet solace of being alone.  I think I’m somewhere amongst those. I told Katy that I could have no problem staying on that island for a long time, but I wasn’t sure I could live there. But it’s easy to judge and make premature decisions before we experience the full action.

When I questioned Katy about if she were to live there sheltered from the hustle and bustle, would the thrill of the solace eventually wear off, I thought about the quiet seclusion. I don’t think I took into consideration that life is what we will make out of it. Sure the lifestyle is lighter than our North American life as we are used to it. But I think if I actually made a home there, eventually I’d build some roots, maybe establish some of my own book clubs, jaunt over to a close by island for some new entertainment, and I’m sure have plenty of my winter relatives visit.

So in conclusion, in answer to my own question, I don’t think that it would be too much of a good thing at all.


©D.G. Kaye,, 2015

Writers Cheat Sheets: February 2015 – The How-to of Revising



A lot has been said for how to go about editing our work. Every writer seems to develop their own style and habits for revisions. As I am currently in the process, once again of revising my newest book, I found this article timely, with some good reminders.

Note the golden rule that many of the greats will adhere to when it comes to revising our work. “Don’t stop and edit while revising.”

One great point on this post is:

When ready to do the first edit, a good way to break the enjoyment cycle (that is, being creative) is by printing a hard copy of the entire manuscript. That’s right, you don’t work on the computer for this step because you want to read the work like a reader, not the creative author. You want to look at each word and hear how it sounds, how the narrating voice on the page sounds, how the characters’ voices sound. You want a symphony, not off-key kazoos.”


Writers Cheat Sheets has a succinct list here in the link below that will guide you with some good tips on what to do and what not to do. Click the link below to read more:


Writers Cheat Sheets: February 2015 – The How-to of Revising.

Life is Short — Buy The Shoes!

 High heel shoes



“Life is short—buy the shoes.”  This is a small sentence, although packed with some good advice. I took a little writing journal with me on my recent vacation and this quote was the title of the journal.


The cover had a pretty caricature of a girl, happily skipping among flowers while wearing pink stilettos, which captured my attention. Anybody who knows me, knows how much I love shoes, so buying the journal was a no brainer for me.

I found the cute little journal while looking around in the stationery section of a gift store in Arizona. Every time I picked it up, it reminded me not to hem and haw over little decisions in life which we tend to  let grow so grand sometimes in our thoughts. And I bought it.

With so much sickness and evil in the world, we shouldn’t be burdening ourselves with petty worries. We have to remember to have gratitude in the little moments that make us feel happy.

If we come across some item that makes us feel good and brings us a smile then I say indulge. You like it, you buy it! If it doesn’t cut into your life savings or living budget, and it brings you joy, then go for it!

“Sometimes it’s the little things in life that bring us pleasure and can fill a dark day with sunnier skies.”

Life is short
Life’s too short, found in a storefront window in Sedona, Arizona



©D.G. Kaye, 2015

Vaccines – Scam or Scare?



Is it any wonder that people are so confused on whether or not to get vaccines for themselves or their children?

Many conversations are abuzz on the topic of vaccines of late. Mothers worry whether or not by protecting their children with vaccines, will it bring on autism. Currently there is a lot of chatter on the debate of the Measles vaccine. Many question the ingredients added to these vaccines to make them viable, wondering if all the additives to the vaccine serum itself are more harmful than the disease. I know I question them. And then there is the question of the efficacy itself of the said vaccine. I have my own doubts and questions as well, particularly about the Shingles vaccine.

For the past few years my husband has been urged by his doctor to get vaccinated for Shingles. Me, not being a fan of such vaccine, as well as the Flu vaccine, decided to delve further into the pros and cons. I personally did not see a great benefit of this vaccine based on what I had summed up from what I had read. Nonetheless, when my husband had his annual physical last week and was once again advised by his doctor to have it, he brought up the subject again when he got home and showed me the prescription he obtained to get the vaccine and was to take it back to his doctor’s office to have injected. I looked at the literature that the doctor had sent with the prescription and thought I’d stew over it for a few days before I decided if I wanted my husband to have the injection.

When I read up on the subject, these were the facts listed on the brochure:

ZOSTAVAX does NOT protect everyone, so some people who get the vaccine may still get shingles. However, if you develop shingles despite being vaccinated, it CAN help reduce the intensity and duration of pain.”

The next day my husband took it upon himself (he’s a big boy now) to pick up the prescription and have the injection. He shared this with me after it was done. He also brought home the receipt for the vaccine of which he paid $207.00. Besides my reservations about the efficacy, or the need for the vaccine, I was shocked at the sticker price.

Apparently there were no real side effects listed on the pamphlet, but I googled some forums. Later that afternoon, my husband ran a high fever and got deliriously tired and extremely nauseous, diahrea and chills for the rest of the week. Google had displayed many people with these symptoms. Coincidence? I don’t know, but $207, yowza! For a ‘maybe it will work, maybe not? It sounds a lot like the Flu vaccine that many people I know complain about when they get it –  they get the flu anyway.

Personally, I think it all goes back to Big Pharma and another Cash Cow. Scam or scare? What do you think?


Google Search Algorithm Adds Mobile-Friendly Factors & App Indexing To Ranking


News Flash: Google will be changing the way their algorithms work on April 21st. This will affect the way our websites are displayed on mobile devices. I happily subscribe to Joan Stewart’s newsletters and this is where I discovered this important piece of information.


Joan is a.k.a. The Publicity Hound and offers a wealth of information in her newsletters to writer and authors about self publishing and marketing, as well, she keeps us up to date on the newest trends. She often works with J.F. Bookman from The . They offer webinars where we can take advantage of great information and great deals on their promos.

What Joan has shared by pointing out this article linked below, is that google will be changing their ranking system, and websites that aren’t currently mobile friendly will not be recognized in the rankings. Yes, that means your site’s visibility may be hampered for those hand-held device readers of our blogs.

In the article below, written by news editor Barry Schwartz from, you will be able to click on a link to test your websites.

You know how the old saying goes . . . “An ounce of prevention . . .”

Google Search Algorithm Adds Mobile-Friendly Factors & App Indexing To Ranking.


©D.G. Kaye,, 2015