How to Get Published Without a Website

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Everyone talks about setting up a blog or website to set yourself up as a writer or expert.

However; you don’t need a website right away. This may go completely against what you’ve been told, but it’s totally possible. I’ve seen it firsthand.

Here are resources you can use to get published without a website and build your portfolio:

LinkedIn

You can publish blog posts on LinkedIn that can be useful for a professional audience. Do you have an expertise you want to showcase or a topic you’re passionate about? Write about it and share it on LinkedIn.

Medium

Medium is a more mature version of Tumblr and is powered through Twitter. Not only can you publish your own blog posts, but you can also contribute to other Medium accounts (which I haven’t explored yet but it’s a great resource to look into).

Contribute to publications

If you have a favorite blog, website, newspaper or magazine, pitch them to write for them. You can utilize samples from LinkedIn, Medium or a school newspaper before you pitch these publications would be helpful. Be mindful that you may receive a lot of no’s in  this arena before you get a yes; but when you get a yes, it’s so rewarding.

Submit your creative writing to online and print publications

There are some publications that specialize in getting your creative writing published. A few of these publications include Poets and Writers, The Write Life, and Writer’s Digest.

As a writer, one of the goals is to have a website to showcase your work and generate clients (depending on the type of writer you are). In the meantime, utilize the above resources to get your work out there.

Do you have any additional tips and resources about publishing your work without a website? Comment below or tweet me @chelseaahamlet.

Guess who started a podcast?!

Chels in Studio

Ayyeeeee! I’m so excited to announce that I have launched my podcast, Write Empower Repeat.

Write Empower Repeat is to help empower writers to continue to pursue their dreams. This podcast will provide tips, interviews, and real ass conversations about being a writer/creative.

Many people believe writing isn’t a “real” job or feel discouraged about pursuing this career because it isn’t a guaranteed money maker compared to other careers.

However, writers are needed, wanted, and appreciated just as much as any other profession. If this podcast resonates with you, let’s write, empower and repeat together.

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You can also check out another podcast I’m on, Post Grad Formula, with Cylla and Myah.

Post Grad Formula is a podcast that provides insight and a safe space for Millennials who are transitioning from college life to post grad life into adulthood. Topics include relationships, finances, family, career, and more.

 

Thank you for the support and I look forward to having you on this journey with me.

5 Digital Grammar Resources for Writers

grammar 2I’ve been told that editors make writers. They are able to see things that writers don’t normally see or would think to put out.

But what happens when you don’t have an editor? What happens when you suck at spelling and when grammar makes you cringe?

Don’t stop believing you can be a great writer. Just start by using these five online tools:

Grammarly

Likes: Very user friendly. There’s also a plug in you can use online.

Dislikes: Grammarly will only tell you simple grammar mistakes you can correct in your writing, not complex mistakes unless you upgrade to a paid package.

Paper Rater 

Likes: Paper Rater gives you a grade towards the end of the check. They also give suggestions on how to include your writing, especially with active and passive voice as well as sentence starters. I also like that they ask for the type of contents being reviewed as well as the education level (which is optional for you to put). It’s also a plug in on your computer.

Dislikes: It doesn’t always show grammar or punctuation mistakes, which is why I use multiple grammar checkers.

Grammar Girl 

Likes: Great resource for understanding grammar. She writes about grammar rules and explains what’s relevant and outdated in the grammatical realm.

Dislikes: The information can be overwhelming.

Ginger Software 

Likes: I love the plug in and the fact that they give you grammar as well as punctuation suggestions no matter if you upgraded or not. You can also use this offline as a downloadable program.

Dislikes: You have weekly grammar correction limits until you upgrade.

Purdue Owl

Likes: Provides multiple grammar breakdowns in a simple and concise way.

Dislikes: The information can be overwhelming.

I hope these resources make your life easier as you continue your journey as a writer.

Do you have additional online grammar resources writers can utilize? Comment below or tweet me @chelseaahamlet.

10 Creative Women You Should Follow

createherstock-werk-4As a writer and newbie podcaster (Whoot Whoot), I’ve noticed that women are SLAYING in both arenas. Whether it’s researching how to be a better writer, getting the latest in pop culture, or getting mental wellness resources, I find that women are DOMINATING my experience as a creative and I am LOVING it.

When I need a touch of inspiration, I have different blogs, podcasts, newsletters, and tweets I flock to for that extra oomph, which is highly attributed to the women I follow on these platforms (Again, fellas I love ya but it’s Women’s Month so let me rock. Men’s Health Month is in June so you’ll get your time too!)

Keeping this as succinctly as I can (because you need to know the tea on these women asap), here are 10 creative women you should know AND follow😊

  1. Hey Fran Hey 

Hey Fran Hey

I heard about Francheska Medina “Hey Fran Hey” a few years ago, but I’m just REALLY getting into her now. She is a wellness influencer based out of Harlem, New York and is 1/3 of The Friend Zone, a podcast you NEED in your life.

She started her journey when she created a blog to track her holistic healing when she had medical problems with her kidneys.  She turned her situation into motivation and is now reaping the rewards as well as sharing what she’s learned through her wellness tour. Visit her website and follow her on Twitter.

  1. Mystic Lipstick 

Mystic Lipstick

What can I say about Danielle Ayoka aka Mystic Lipstick?! Besides the fact that she’s dope AF, she is an astrologer and Contributing writer for @ESSENCE. I found out about her through The Friend Zone when they interviewed her.

Even since then, I’ve been hooked on her Twitter, where she gives the tea on different astrology signs (if you’re a Capricorn like me she says we’re her favorite sign, but she drags us through the mud – aka calls us out on our ish – so be prepared). She also gives great new moon and full moon rituals that will help you release negative energy as well as release your desires into the universe so you can get what you want. It may sound hippy dippy, but try her next ritual and get back to me.

She is also a certified Reiki Master and alternative healing practitioner. Visit her website and follow her on Twitter to learn.

  1. Anuli  

Anuli Photo

Anuli (pronounced “ah-noo-lee”) is a communication strategist and writer. I forget how I found out about her, but I’m glad I did.

Her newsletter gives me life every time I read it. She uses her humor as well as her personal experiences to paint an interesting picture about various topics including politics, blackness, freelance/entrepreneurship, and life as a millennial creative.

My favorite parts about her newsletter is that not only does she provide her own opinions, but she also provides articles she’s into AND links to opportunities in different professional fields (both paid and unpaid). You can visit her website, find her on Twitter, and subscribe to her newsletter.

  1. Crissle 

Crissle

Crissle is poppin’. That’s all I can say really. Lol. She is the co-host of the HILARIOUS podcast, The Read, hosts hour-long music blocks on Beats 1 radio (part of Apple Music), and is part of the show Uncommon Sense on MTV2.

If you ever wanted to say something about a celebrity, our president, or a situation, but didn’t have the guts to say it, Crissle will say it for you and then some. Lol. I also LOVE. HER. LAUGH.

Anyone who knows me knows I have THE most obnoxious laugh and Crissle’s laugh is so hearty that it makes me feel good about myself. Don’t believe me? Visit her website, follow her on Twitter, and listen to The Read. I promise, you will be entertained and informed.

  1. Sakita Holley

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First off, Sakita Holley is a POWERHOUSE! She is the Founder and CEO of House of Success, which is a NY-based lifestyle PR firm, and has her own podcast entitled Hashtags and Stilettos. I love her podcasts because many of them are short but informative and swagged out. You’ll see why when you listen.

She gives you a blueprint on how to move like a #girlboss AND interviews various women about their journey to success. I love her tips, strategies, and open interview style so I look forward to seeing what she does next. Visit her website, listen to her podcast, and follow her on Twitter.

6. Candice 

Life in a PileCandice of Life in a Pile is your favorite home girl in your head and online. She actually reminds me of Khadijah from Living Single. On Life in a Pile, she covers various topics like travel, sex, womanhood, music, and more.

She also writes for XO Necole and Elite Daily. One of the things I love about her most is that she responds to Tweets pretty quickly and engages with her audience. If you were ever looking for a site and a creative who uses her space for women to be their authentic selves through writing, look no further. Visit her website and follow her on Twitter.

7. Regina Anaejionu (By Regina)

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By Regina is AMAZING!!! She is all about resources, planning and INFORMATION! She specializes in helping you launch your brand and create more income for yourself and the people you love.

If you are interested in building or monetize your blog, you need her in your life. You can sign up for her newsletter, but the website is enough to get you started on your content writing journey. Visit her website and follow her on Twitter.

8. Lauren Tharp

Lauren Tharp

Lauren Tharp created an award winning website for freelance writers looking to become better freelance writers. She gives out free e-books, sends out bi-monthly newsletters, and offers one-on-one mentoring for new writers. I had a mentoring session with her and it helped me take my website to the next level visually.

I love her website because there is a plethora of knowledge that she gives away for free AND she is a great spirit. Visit her website and follow her on Twitter.

9. Alexandra Franzen 

Alex Frazen

Alexandra Franzen is a writer based in Portland, Oregon, who writes books, leads writing retreats, and pens lyrics to songs among other amazing writing projects. What I love most about Alexandra is her monthly newsletter.

Her writing is short, sweet and to the point, but hits home every time I open my email. She encourages writers to keep going and gives her favorite songs for the month in case we want to jam along with her. Visit her website and sign up for her newsletter.

10. Jen Carrington 

Jen Carrington

Jen Carrington is a blogger and creative coach, who helps purpose-driven creatives make things happen in their creative work and life on their own terms, in their own way, and by their own rules. (Yes, I got this from her website. Lol).

I found out about her when she and By Regina collaborated on a complimentary webinar. Ever since then, I’ve been following her and listening to her podcast.

She’s the one who inspired me to have a word for the year and encourages me when I’m feeling blah about my creative business. Also, she has an English accent. Who can resist an English accent? Lol. Visit her website and listen to her podcast to see what I’m talking about.

As a way to celebrate Women’s Month (yes, I know it’s Women’s History Month but I’ll call it what I want because it fits. Lol), make sure you check out these amazing women out for laughs, inspiration, and resources.

Who are some creative women you follow? Comment below or share your thoughts on twitter @chelseaahamlet.

Why Sisterhood is Important to Creative Professionals

createherstock-inspire-create-3Heeeeyyyyyy everyone! Mad late with the post, but the way my life has been set up lately…. Lol

It’s the end of the first quarter and I don’t know about you, but I AM STRE-SSING.

I’m moving forward with some of my creative ventures while I work my part-time job and I believe the universe is looking to help me release negative energy/bad habits that no longer serve me so there’s a whole lot going on right now.

So as I’m stressing, going through my feelings, and still trying to get $h!t done (including this blog post), I was thinking about what I could write about this week. After much thought and in honor of Women’s Month, this post is dedicated to why sisterhood is important as a creative professional, especially as a writer building a business.

*Fellas, love you so much, but I got you on a different post*

Now, back in the day – before this year really, I wasn’t with the whole “sisterhood” movement. I had girls that were friends, but the relationships were individualized. The one girl friendship group I participated in was once a year (if that) to celebrate a friend of mine’s birthday (her friends and I didn’t get along but we put our differences aside for our mutual friend). 

So I was like sisterhood, what? Sisterhood, where? Not over here, ma’am. Don’t get it twisted though, I support women’s rights and I believe in black girl magic. However, the idea of sisterhood turned me off because in my experience, women in groups can be SHADY. Like shady like smile in your face, give you a backhanded compliment, hug you, sips tea, then goes ham on your life when you turn your back… Can you tell I’ve been traumatized?

Lol. I mean, I’ve always wanted sisterhood. I love Sex and the City, Living Single, and Golden Girls, but a sisterly bond with a group of women felt out of my reach.

Until I met a few young women this year who are on a similar journey as me! They are building their career in the creative sphere and striving for greatness while navigating the harsh, insensitive world called New York City (and dating on the side – hello, hi). 

*Well, actually New York isn’t THAT bad anymore – but you catch my drift*

So, without further ado and in recognition of my new sisters, here are my top 3 reasons why sisterhood is essential to creative professionals.

*Disclaimer: I am not saying men cannot provide the same support as women. I am saying that just like how men need their man caves and guy nights (or whatever you call it), women enjoy girl time, especially when it comes to building. I.E.THIS IS NOT MALE BASHING* Lol.

Now back to the topic at hand:

Top 3 reasons why sisterhood is essential to creative professionals:

1.When times get stressful, you have people in your corner you can drink with, cry with, then support you in getting back on track.

I’ve noticed that with my newfound sisterhood, they provide me with a 360 experience that I’ve never had before. I can chop it up with them about my creative endeavors, my freelance business (as I’m getting my LLC), and still turn up with them all in the same day. (I’m actually writing this at one of our girl’s night. Lol).

2. When a guy you’re dating (or not dating *wink wink*) pisses you off or treats you coldly, they let you call the guy all types names, allow you to be angry and upset without judgement, then lovingly (notice I didn’t say nicely. Lol), encourage you to acknowledge your feelings, but shift your emotions to get shit done to channel your creativity.

Yes, men can do this too. But it’s different coming from a woman who is on a similar path as you, who has been through the same emotions you’ve been through (not just love related, but work related, and family related) and can give you a word that can change your perspective and ultimately your life in that moment (I may be a little dramatic here but my circle is that inspirational that I gotta give credit where credit is due.)

3. When you succeed after feeling stressed, neglected or looked over, they celebrate you, smile and give you that “b!tch you know you did that” look, because they know what you’ve been through and been rooting for you from jump.

This goes without saying, but there’s something about sisters who’ve been there through checking your blog posts (like my girlfriends did in this post); helping you prep for interviews; giving you the resources to build your business; and riding the train with you when you had little to no train fare that makes your heart smile when you level up and make the times of struggle a little easier.

Yes, we all still have growing to do, but I already feel the sisterhood in my success because a lot of my creative endeavors are with women who I consider new longtime friends and family. I’m so grateful for what’s happening with us now, what’s to come and the journey I’m on as a grow as a professional and business woman.

So, in conclusion, sisterhood is a great way to propel you forward and to support you when life gives you lemons by giving you tequila, salt, a shoulder to cry on, and a hangover remedy to get your ass in order. 

Special shout out to my creative sisters, Myah, Cylla, Shakirah, and Kamala, who are the Golden to my Girls, the Living to my Single, and my guide to the City when Sex (or the opposite sex) gets in the way. Lol. Y’all are the real MVP’s and I look forward to continuing our journey together and individually.

Do you have a sister circle/sisterhood? What have been your experiences with sisterhood? Comment below or tweet me @chelseaahamlet.

The Writer and Self-Love

createherstock-vday-2017-2So, I’ve concluded that self-love is a process. Like striving for that million-dollar deal, or finding your soulmate, starting your business, or getting your first apartment.

For some people, self-love may take years. For others, self-love may take the majority of their lifetime to achieve. And unfortunately, there are a few people who never get a chance to experience self-love. No matter where you fall on the spectrum, the key is to strive for it.

As writers, self-love is something we struggle with all the time. Well, let me speak for myself: I struggle with self-love as a writer.

While writing my thoughts down is cathartic and rewarding, especially when I learn that my writing is helping others, there’s a small cost that I choose to pay. I choose to not fully take care of myself.

Even as I’m writing this at 1:56am (when I went to bed the night before at 2:30am), self-love/self-care is taking a back seat and a front seat simultaneously (the struggle).

Although I know I need to go to bed because I have an early morning (self-care), I have the passion in my heart to get this post out (self-love). Or maybe I’m mistaking self-love with love of my craft…

Now me writing my blog post late at night is small on the self-love scale, but what about the heavy hitters?

How many of us (myself included) have cut ourselves, smoked or drank or engaged in self-destructive behaviors when we were down instead of considering other healthier options? Like confronting the person we have an issue with, taking a walk, choosing to forgive, going to therapy, joining a support group, meditating, working out, or WRITING?! JOURNALING!!

As writers, sometimes we sleep on our gift when we need it most. Look at Edgar Allen Poe… Look at Robin Williams…. How many creative lives could have been saved if self-love was present in the moment they chose to give up? Oh, what could have been the possibilities! 

Let’s go even deeper… self-love and our relationships with others. Although our dysfunctional relationships make great material most times, is it really serving us to stay in them? And if we stay, what is it costing us? Our sanity? Our creativity? Our energy? Assets we could be using in a more fulfilling way?

Seriously, when are we as writers and creatives going to absorb, accept, and protect our magic?

When are we as writers and creatives going to embrace the fact that we are worthy?

When are we as writers and creatives going to value and live in our abundance (abundance of ideas, abundance of words, abundance of talent)?

When are we as writers and creatives going to get it through our minds, hearts, souls, and fingers that we fucking matter?

When?

Now for those of you who this message doesn’t apply to, I’m so happy for you, but go on ‘bout your business. I ain’t mad at you, but this ain’t for you.

This is for the writers and creatives who struggle every fucking day at some moment during the day, afternoon, and evening doing things consciously and subconsciously that compromise their worth and self-love. You are not alone boo!

But we’re going to get there. Whether it be together or separate, we’re going to make healthier decisions as well as get to a place where self-love is non-negotiable in our careers and personal lives.

Our craft, our relationships, our world, and our lives depend on it. I know that may seem dramatic, but think about it before you completely write me off.
So, before I end this post, I’ll leave you with this: “You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” – Louise L. Hay

Besides, people say self-love is the best love.

Let’s find out together shall we? See you on the other side of scarcity.

The Intimate Writer

love-selfcare-createherstock-1As writers, we have it going on!

 We have the words that can mind fuck you, the words that can make you cry, the words that make you take action, and the words that can make you sigh from the relief of knowing that you are not alone.

See, when I say “intimate” automatically people think of sex. FYI, this ain’t the post for that. Well, maybe it is – I haven’t decided yet…

But see, intimacy is more than just sex, my old pastor used to say intimacy was in-to-me-you-see.

That’s what a writer does. We use our words to get you to see us. You see, our different perspectives, our experiences, our raw ass feelings – good, bad, or indifferent – you see us.

Even journalists. And I single them out because people think journalists are all about facts, which they are. But the way a journalist delivers the story is unique and gives you a glance of who they are and what they value beyond the page, especially from the stories they cover the most.

So, intimacy can be seen in different ways as a writer. Either way, we choose to give a piece of ourselves in every story, blog post, essay, book, newsletter, and email (email seems crazy but it’s true – look between the lines and the words that are chosen).

The crazy thing is that some writers haven’t acknowledged this intimacy in their writing because they’re programmed to take themselves out of it for the obvious reasons.

We get told, “it’s not about you”, and “you don’t want your emotions to get in the way of the facts or message”, etc., which makes sense.

But as long as you acknowledge and embrace the intimacy present in your writing, you can adjust to what the world is telling you, but still stay true to who you are as a writer. (In case you haven’t figured it out yet, intimacy just means being your authentic self and being brave enough for others to see who you are – good, bad, or indifferent.)

You can use your signature writing style – even if you have to adjust it a tad – to meet the person you are writing for half-way.

If it’s ghost writing, you can still put your stink on it by HOW you get the info you need to get your clients message out and even how you present it on paper and off line (because it’s still your unique touch).

If you’re looking at this and shaking your head, “No, I can’t do that at my job or with my client” and you feel stifled and frustrated, I think it would behoove you to start your exit strategy because that type of energy/limitations can negatively take away from you as a writer and as a person.

(You know as writers, we’re sensitive aka more in touch with our feelings, than the average person). And I’m not talking about an exit strategy if you feel this way every now and then. I’m talking to people who feel this way everyday and don’t even want to go into work or talk to their clients because of it.

Because like most jobs and clients that get on your nerves and drain your energy and make you feel stifled, it negatively impacts your romantic life. (Valentine’s Day just passed so I had to go there).

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As writers, we are naturally intimate individuals because we have to tap into emotions most people don’t want to touch, ask the questions people are afraid to ask, and say/write things most people don’t have the courage to say and/or write.

So now I have a question: what if you as a writer were just as intimate with your friends, lovers, wives, husbands, children and even grandchildren as you were with your writing. Would your relationship be drastically different or the same?

Or even the flip side: what if your writing was just as intimate as you are with your friends, family, lovers, wives, husbands, children, and even grandchildren. Would your writing be drastically different or remain the same?

There is no good, bad, right or wrong answer to these questions. These questions are really just getting you to think about how you show up in the world in your relationships and in your career as a writer. As I’m writing this, I’m doing some thinking too.

I understand some people separate their relationships with their work, but as a writer, you can choose to have your writing and your life be one and the same. (It may be more freeing)

So, if you get nothing from this post, remember these four insights:

  • Stay true to you.
  • Allow others to see you (You never know how impactful you can be to someone).
  • Don’t be afraid to embrace intimacy.
  • Intimacy with others and intimacy with yourself goes beyond sex.

You being intimately and authentically you can make the world a more dynamic, loving and grateful place.

So embrace intimacy my fellow writers. It can do wonders for you.

How do you define intimacy? Do you view yourself as an intimate writer? Do you think your writing should be separate from your career? Tweet me at @chelseaahamlet.

The Broken-Hearted Writer

Broken hearted writerWhen dealing with love, there’s an unspoken rule that you’ll also deal with pain.

Whenever you’re vulnerable with someone (you can be vulnerable without sharing your feelings btw), there’s always a chance of you being hurt, disappointed, etc.

Now some people deal with the hurt/pain WAAAYYY better than others.

Some people accept it for what it is, then move on to the next. Others get hurt, then build a wall up and only bring down that wall down when they feel safe. Most people carry the hurt with them in every relationship and treat each partner the same as they treated their previous partners. (The latter is not a judgement; I’m guilty of doing it too)

We all fall into one of those categories. If you don’t, you’re part of that rare 1% that gets hurt, deals with it, then moves on with little to no baggage. Kudos to you.

For those of you who are in the 99% when it comes to being broken-hearted, it can be a little difficult to bounce back.

We are afraid to trust without confirmation that we can and we limit ourselves when we first meet someone to assess if it’s worth getting involved at all just to get shut down.

We say no when we really want to say yes; we push the doctrines that our past partners followed onto our new partners, and we push away anything that seems scary no matter how reassuring the person is being (because the last one was just as reassuring too).

So how do we deal with our hurt? I can’t speak for others, but as a writer I write.

I journal, write poetry, or just text some thoughts in the Notes on my iPhone. Anything to get it out.

So, this poem is one of the many ways I’ve gotten out some hurt. It’s by no means pretty, but it’s real. It’s called:

My Open Wound

My insides are an open wound, pussing with anger, frustration, and apathy.

I’m a hurting.

For the first time in a long time, I cried, screeching in pain and plea.

I am mourning.

Not over a death, but a loss from within. I’m so used to him being a part of me or him al-ways be-ing there, that without him I feel like there is a gaping hole in my left breast burning from the acids of love.

It’s been brought to my attention that a person does not have to be in love in order to feel that affliction of love.

I am grieving.

It feels like a part of me is missing and I miss it – I miss him – I miss feeling like I am whole.

I am vulnerable.

At this time, it’s easy for me to latch on to someone for my heart grabs an individual by the throat and holds them hostage.

Refusing to let go.

They are chained, if not glued, or almost molded into my inner being.

I take on their traits as they fill up that empty space, where destruction is taking place.

They either calm down my storm or fuel it even more for they can’t seem to understand why I have chosen them and have stuck by them.

But has it occurred to them that it wasn’t necessarily them but the perks of them.

The stimulants and security that comes with them?

Regardless of how it all started, I would still get so deep into it that I would fall for them, which led to me falling on my face, leaving me with a broken spirit, crushed dreams, and a wounded heart.

An open wound, pussing with anger from disappointment, frustration from repetition (for it happens all the time), and apathy from no longer caring about my daily routine and responsibilities. I don’t have the strength to care anymore.

I need a band-aid.

Usually people often serve as my band aid to hide the truth and ease the pain, but just like band-aids their hold wears away and I will not only be my own band-aid but also serve as my own first aid kit.

Why do I continue to do this and put myself through this cycle?

When am I going to learn that I don’t have to do or go through this on my own.

I have God.

I just don’t have the patience. They say He’ll heal the sick and comfort the heartbroken but I need that now. I’ve asked Him, I’ve told Him, I’ve given Him my petitions and yet I’m still waiting.

Ahh, this is excruciating!

But good things come to those who wait and this healing will be worth while. 

I just hope I don’t lose my worthwhile I’m waiting, or give up on my faith, and go back to being an afflicted child, lashing out at others and putting my trust and love into men more than God, which will eventually excrete the puss from my open wound.

If you can relate or this poem resonates with you, click here to hear me recite it.

If you’re still coping with the hurt or re-living the pain with new partners, there are multiple ways of healing:

  • Therapy (which is nothing to be ashamed of).
  • Talking to the person who hurt you.
  • Forgiving the person who hurt you.
  • Forgiving yourself.

If you’re thinking, “Forgive myself?! I did nothing wrong.” You’re absolutely right.

Sometimes when things happen to us, we beat ourselves up because we feel like we should’ve known better.

Well, here’s a news flash: you didn’t know and it’s okay.

Start the healing process and learn from the past. You deserve it!

Have you ever felt like this? If so, share your story here or tweet me @chelseaahamlet.

A Writer in Love

createherstock-vday-2017-13It’sssssssssss February: the month of love. Whew Whoooooo! Or at least that’s what major companies want you to believe. Lol. Whether you’re into Valentine’s Day or believe it’s just another frivolous holiday the country should do away with, it’s a holiday that’s on its way nevertheless.

In the spirit of love (and writing), I’ve decided to dedicate this month’s posts to love. The good, the bad, the humorous, and the vulnerable… Ominous, right?

As a writer, I’ve noticed that writers experience love very differently from non-writers. (Well, not really, but humor me for a moment).

See, when a writer is in love, he or she is INSPIRED! Like really inspired. It’s to the point where we don’t need extra motivation to write. We pick up our pens randomly – when we wake up, when we’re at work, when we’re on the train, when we’re any and everywhere – find a piece of paper and declare our new-found love/infatuation to the world (Well, at least to the next two dozen empty lines).

And it feels SOOOO good. It’s like we’re on a “love” high until we get out all of our love/infatuation laid out on paper.

Now if you are not only a writer, but you’re a performer (singer, spoken word, etc.), you’re even worse when you’re in love.

Not only did you write the words down, but you get to SHOW what the words mean to yourself, to an audience and to the piece was intended for.

Man, we get butterflies and *vulnerability moment* sometimes we even get aroused as we perform because we’re that connected to the piece and the person. (Not inappropriately aroused where it’s inappropriate for children, but aroused to the point where WE know it and hope no one else notices. Lol)

In the spirit of love, this week’s post is dedicated to love and will be shared through love – with a poem. And I’m digging this idea so much that not only can you read the words below, but you get to hear me say the poem on YouTube. (I haven’t recorded my work in a while so this is really big for me).

So, without further ado, I hope you enjoy my poem:

A Writer in Love

How do you know I love you?

How do you know you love me?

After all the things we say and do how can we not?

You used to make my stomach turn to knots and shots of nervousness ran all through my veins.

Now I find myself tryin’ on ya last name.

I used to want to play games thinking guys were all the same, then I found you and wanted to change.

From my hips, to my thighs to my adorable face, you are the cause of my better days, more sunshine than the rain.

I know it’s sounds lame, and it’s not that hard to say, but the way I feel about you is more than that then.

You make my heart sing and my negative thoughts flee,

You make me feel free and when I’m with you, you make me want to cry when I gotta leave.

See, I’ve never felt this way about a guy before.

Maybe it’s because you’re more interested in me than the color of my drawers.

Whatever the cause I’m glad you have me fallin’ hard,

I respect you and adore you, baby you’re my all.

See your demeanor is surprising and unpredictable, tryin‘ not to make your flaws become visible

You make my impossible, possible.

You make my bottom lip quiver and my body shiver.

You’re quick to protect me, got me thinkin’ I’m livin‘ in a fantasy.

From your smile, and your style to your muscles and personality,

Right now and hopefully for eternity, I hope you’ll be the one for me

Now, see I’m sorry if I’m coming off too strongly and fast

But I’m so glad we gave one another a chance to enjoy a little romance.

We let that stupid cupid dance on our hearts,

Letting him hit us with his little love darts.

So now when we’re a part there’s a piece of me missing,

But those pieces glue back together when we start kissing.

And if you’re really listening I hope you understand, that I’m thankful and glad that I can call you my man.

If you loved to read my poem, click here to hear me recite it.

How do you act when you’re in love? Did you resonate with anything that was written? Share your thoughts here or tweet me @chelseaahamlet.

 

Upset to Uplift – Post Inauguration

trump.pngThis blog post is not for the angry. It is not for the militant. And it is not for the faint of heart. This post is for those who want to BE the change instead of complaining about the people they believe should be doing more to spark change.

This post is for the radical – like if Martin and Malcolm shared the same heart and mind. And this post is for people who are looking for a different perspective, a different approach to life, and a different approach in the world they live in. Are you ready to go from upset to uplift?

Many think pieces and articles have been written about the election and the inauguration, but this post is going to deviate from the bashing and division being promoted.

On my home page, I said I wanted to bring positivity to your world and gives you the extra boost you need to keep moving forward when you feel like giving up, so this post is no different.

So, let’s address the pink elephant in the room, Donald Trump is now the President and the world is feeling the impact.

Some people are excited (to each their own), others are trying to relocate to other countries, many people are pissed off ready to flip over tables and certain people are speaking out, but it seems like very few people are taking action to be the change they want to see.

The above statement is not diminishing the actions that have been taken: Steve Harvey met with Donald Trump, John Lewis tweeted about Trump’s legitimacy as President, and we just had a Women’s March nationwide and internationally. Celebrities, political figures, and groups of women are taking a stand – good, bad or indifferent. But on an individual level – what can you do?

Prior to and after the inauguration, there’s been so much mourning, hate, disarray, and chaos.

I’ve even had my own state of mourning. But after my mourning stage was over and I shed my tears watching the inauguration (this was my personal choice – I understand if you disagree with my decision), I realize that pursuing your goals, dreams and aspirations are more important now than, ever. Why? Because there’s more on the line if you don’t.

Here’s our reality: Trump had little to no political experience. His kids, who helped him win, had little to no political experience either, but yet and still he IS the President of the United States. 

Trump owned his power by standing in his convictions – despite the backlash he faced.

Here’s the lesson: There’s no excuse for you not to pursue your dreams.

We can say Trump won the election because 

  •  “He has money”
  • “America is low-key (high-key) racist and always has been”,
  • “The system is rigged”
  •  “White male privilege is real”

Which I am not 100% disagreeing with, but why are you letting those reasons prevent you from stepping into your power? Why are you allowing these factors to cripple you from what you REALLY want to do?

I mean, really look at what we’re facing right now: walls are being built, health care is in jeopardy of being repealed, and women’s reproductive rights slowing regressing , among other things.

What if your dreams were in alignment with key things that are on the line in our country?

Do you want to be a doctor, artist, writer, lawyer, real estate agent, minister, counselor, nonprofit founder, advocate, model, coach, entrepreneur, entertainer, singer, accountant, project manager, or a CPA? Hell, do you want to be or do something that hasn’t even been executed yet?

If you want to, but you’re finding reasons why you shouldn’t or “can’t” do those things (I’m bad at math, everyone else wants to be an entrepreneur, I don’t have enough experience, I don’t know how to get there, etc.), ask if yourself this:

What is the world missing because you aren’t living in the vision God/Spirit has for you?

Better yet, what are YOU missing out on because you aren’t pursuing what you really want to do?

Now, I’m not saying be reckless or irresponsible. I am asking that you choose to pursue your vision and find your power so you can positively contribute something to the world and fully embrace your true, dope self.

This may sound corny and this may seem inappropriate because politics and positivity don’t always reside at the same address. But starting today, you get to decide how you show up and contribute to the world, despite the political climate or your own circumstances.

As I mentioned in the beginning, this post is not for the angry. It is not for the militant. And it is not for the faint of heart. This post is for those who want to BE the change instead of complaining about the people they believe should be doing more to spark change.

This post is for the radical – like if Martin and Malcolm shared the same heart and mind. And this post is for people who are looking for a different perspective, a different approach to life, and a different approach in the world they live in.

So, are you ready to go from upset to uplift or stay in your negative consciousness? There’s work that needs to be done, there’s people who need help, and there’s a world that’s in need of a transformation. If it’s not you, then who? Remember, you are more powerful than you think.

What positive things can you take from the election and the recent inauguration? Share your thoughts below or tweet me @chelseaahamlet.

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