Remembering Charlie Murphy

I don’t explore interest in comedy through Black Board very much, but I’m an ethusiast of comedy. And it is with deep regret that I announce that legendary comedy writer and stand-up comedian, Charlie Murphy, has passed away.

News officials reported that Charlie Murphy, 57, passed after losing his battle against Leukemia. 

Charlie Murphy is the older brother of Eddie Murphy. But he’s mostly known for his writing, comedic acting, and narration on the infamous Chappelle Show. 

Personally speaking, Charlie Murphy is what many writers and comedians aspire to be. I looked up to him, followed his journey.

Charlie Murphy, thank you for paving the road for us. You will be missed. 

Can’t Find a Niche for a Blog

I admit, the reason my blog goes weeks without an update is because I have no idea what to post. The initial focus for my WordPress Blog, Black Board, was to talk about my freelance writing career and self-publishing news.

Like any other working adult, I find it difficult to dedicate my time to my blog when there’s so much to do. What takes up most of my time is three social media accounts, two jobs, freelancing, a gaming hobby, and procrastinating.

Now, there’s a blog. The endless possibilities are almost overwhelming. A decision has to be made. For me, that decision was to talk about a self-publishing journey. The challenges of self-publishing are worth documenting.

Looking ahead, I have no clue what the next blog post is going to be. Anything that’s absolutely awesome is placed on the idea shelf for a self-publishing endeavor. So, I guess I playing this blog and niche thing by ear, or in this case, by brainstorm.

What good are FAQs and How-To blog posts? They don’t necessarily teach a person how to manage their blog.

But in the event that someone is searching for answers on what their blog content theme should be, I suppose you could post whatever comes to mind until you find something that sticks. Be sure it’s something you like rather than something that gets a click. You could run into blog that feels more like a chore.

What are your thoughts on blog niche? I’m short on answers and abundant in frustration. Comment if you have insight.

 

Return of the Resolution

With Christmas over, we’re all getting psyched for that moment, counting the last few seconds until, bang! 2017! Along with celebrations, there are declarations of change. How long they will last is up to whoever has made such a promise.

Those promises are known as New Years’ Resolutions, the promise we all want to follow through with as Father Time ushers us into the new year. However, consistency is more difficult than it seems when we attempt to alter our routines and old habits.

Sure, we all know the malarkey that comes with a resolution, but the fun in its creation and creativity is unparalleled.

Exercise the right to set a goal, yet push for stability. Once that first week passes by, prepare for procrastination. Fight it. Tell it, “Go to hell!”

For me, I have a few items on my list of things to accomplish in 2017.

My personal and somewhat realistic resolutions:

  • Increase persistence of freelance endeavors 
  • Blog more
  • Work on multiple projects at once 
  • Make better investments in regards to self-publishing

I’m certain that one of these will stick more than the next. They’re all great ideas, but they need some substance.

Maybe an alert on a smartphone will help. Or maybe I should just…

We’ll see what happens…

Do Hiring Managers Really Read Resumes?

It’s no secret. Some of us have our degrees with aspirations of entering an industry that we studied for or still studying for. The truth to career life is that you never know what it holds. Life is like a box of Raisinets, you never know which one is a raisin or a small marble of cocoa that missed its target.

And sometimes we miss. Job seekers go through education sifting through the process waiting on the machine to coat us with something scrumptious. We roll past other raisins thinking we’d get there first. Somehow, we get into wrong position and fall right off the periphery, missing the key component that makes us attractive.

So what do we do? We get up, dust off, and get back in the mix hoping to get picked.

Resumes are a lot like that. They start out  dried out and blank waiting patiently for the job seeker to put something delicious on its person. The brainstorm spins a tasty morsel in a bowl of memories, which job seekers drizzle neatly over the page. Voila.

Apply. Submit. Into the box it goes with other resumes wanting to be reviewed. Hopefully they’re taken serious.

Out of the batch, hiring managers select each piece–tasting each one and deciding which Raisinet was the best. But when you eat a Raisinet, do you really measure which one is best? Sadly enough, resumes are treated the same.

Sometimes that resume we spent all week to prepare is consumed without much thought. Does that mean job seekers should stop writing resumes and cover letters? No. It simply means that we have improve our recipe.

That’s why most recommend that resumes be one page–it’s short and sweet, a delicate quickness that’s appreciated and missed almost instantly. If it tastes great, the hiring manager will hum on it savoring it on their taste buds. That desire to savor the taste is the phone call or response email we get after we’ve applied for the job.

So do employers actually read our resumes? Yes. But not all of them considered. Don’t get discouraged. Keep exploring ways to improve.

 

Recovery

I’m not sure if I posted anything about this, so I’ll just talk about it to cover my tracks.

On December 1, 2015, my stuff was stolen due to my carelessness. I forgot to lock my car door, and my laptop, flash drives, writing guides, camera, and tooth brush was stolen. What hurt the most was the stolen writing that I worked two years on.

It was devastating.

But I recovered.

Currently, I have a new laptop and two more flash drives (one containing some of the rough draft stories I wrote over the two year period).

For the past couple of days, I’ve been reading, editing, and proofreading these stories. Somehow, I’m working faster and more efficient than before, so I guess the setback wasn’t really a setback. In a strange way, by having my stuff stolen, it made me appreciate my work more than ever.

And I’ve noticed my work, my writing is getting better. I wish I had this mind when I left college. But hey, we live and learn, right?

Letter to the Undergrad

Hello Undergrad Student(s),

Don’t take this the wrong way, but your career is going to suck if you don’t arm yourself with as many skills as possible.

The purpose of this letter is a warning. Be careful. Don’t take your college career for granted or you’ll be going a through loop trying to figure out what you should’ve done while you were in college.

I know this because I believed that one degree would opened all the doors for me. It’s not like that any more. Bachelor’s degrees are a dime a dozen. These days, a person must be a jack of all trades.

Use your resources. Professors are not just there to piss you off, they get you ready for the rugged edges of rejection and bluntness from employers. Unpaid internships does put a damper on finances, but they can help build experience, which is just as valuable as education. Hoard professional experience. The more you have the better your job search will be.

Let go of your entitlement issues. Take the stick out of your ass, you got student loans to pay. If rejection bothers you then bitterness will be your best friend. And its a crappy friend that throws blame at everyone. Misfortune and scarcity is life’s way of preparing you for the hurtful moments to come.

Appreciate these great times in college. Use them wisely. Use those expensive books that miraculously become cheap at the end of the semester. Actually, keep those books, they’re great references for the trials ahead.

Stay focused.

Cordially,

 

 

Elijah B.

 

 

Wait until You’re President

Y’know, political beliefs can be annoying. Everyone has an opinion, which they’re entitled to, on what government is supposed to do about everyone’s problems. But do we, the American public, really know how to solve the problem.

What problem(s)?

Let’s take a look. The problems our country, the United States, has is a long list. To make it specific, let’s review the issues the Presidential Runners have talked about:

  • Immigration – Republicans have pushed the issue that there are far too many illegal immigrant in the United States. According to Donald Trump, illegal immigrants should be deported and the U.S. should build a wall to prevent illegal immigration.
  • Foreign Policy – To some, the U.S. is not the front runner, so to speak, in the world. The Iran Deal and Benghazi has been debated since 2015.
  • Economy & Budget – The awareness is up on the Affordable Care Act and Planned Parenthood. Are they a big concern
  • Gun Control – Will more gun control prevent mass killings or is it step to take gun rights away from U.S. citizens?

I’m not convinced in these debates or tangents about how to solve America’s issues. All I see is a few well-spoken people who think they have it figured it out. They have no clue how to run a country.

What annoys me the most is this negative criticism toward the President Obama. And it’s not just Obama. Republican and Democrat officials criticized President George W. Bush as well. There was nothing wrong with the Bush Administration nor is it anything wrong with the Obama Administration. If it were truly a mess, they wouldn’t have been elected for two terms each.

Okay, there are several things they could’ve done better. But c’mon people! Don’t be swayed by figures who use sensational, tabloid-like speeches. These officials have an agenda that doesn’t include the general public.

It’s all “this and that” until they get into that executive seat.