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Friday, June 24, 2016

Obama Cries, Dems Sit In, Ryan Shuts Down, Love Must Win

I think SUCKS is the harshest word I use in this post, because I wanted to be able to share it with parents who could share with their kids. And it was hard because I feel this issue on a lot of levels. So please read it and think about it and talk about it. I wrote it because I care. A lot of ideas. A lot of videos to share. A lot of information. It is a political post, but I don't think it should be couched in political terms. I feel like it is a life or death post. And until you know someone who has been shot and killed, I think you can't understand. I don't wish that understanding on you. No one should lose anyone else to gun violence.

I know a guy in jail for murder. He's been there since before I was 20. I don't know if legislation would have stopped him from getting the gun that he used to kill, but he's spent more time in jail than out of jail for less than "20 minutes of action." He can't take back what he did. And it sucks. And I still think we need to do more. Maybe nothing would have saved the guy I knew. But maybe smart people can help save someone else.

Dick Cheney shot a man in the face during a hunting trip and he didn't even apologize. The man who was SHOT apologized. And maybe that was the right thing, but it seems pretty bizarre to me. Poor kid gets decades in prison but rich guy doesn't even have to say sorry. Sounds legit.

This video of POTUS Obama was taken 6 months ago. And it could have been the same speech after the Orlando shooting. Ending gun violence is more important than owning guns right now. I am tired of shootings. I lost a lovely friend to a school shooting. I was in the building when my friend (a professor in his last year before retirement) saved hundreds of us by taking the gun-wielding student into his office. He had to know that he wouldn't ever come out again. It was senseless.

About the Sit In Staged by Dems:

I support the sit-in that just happened. I don't care that Paul Ryan calls it posturing. The alternative is dead people. I am SO TIRED of moments of silence for dead people. We have to do more. We have to acknowledge the NEED to do more.

I had no idea that John Lewis was part of the Civil Rights Movement in Selma until I saw this video. It makes me proud to live in Georgia now -- in spite of the Trump supporters in the state.

Here he is at the sit in. I think he understands, like I do, that leaving the problem for tomorrow has been the problem. And one bill isn't going to solve it. It's going to take A LOT. But we have to start at lots of somewheres. We have to help law enforcement and we have to better police our law enforcement. We have to stop turning blind eyes to things that do not directly concern us. We have to do more.

I think loopholes that allow people without licenses to buy and sell at gun shows should be closed. If you have a license and can pass a background check, your life is not affected by this. Or it is made better, in the way that we have laws protecting us against unlicensed and uninsured motorists.
Speaking of, I think all gun owners should have accidental death and injury insurance. TWENTY kids EVERY DAY are hospitalized for gunshot wounds. If gun owners aren't paying for their care, than either victims or their families are paying for their own care or every taxpayer is footing the bill for the emergency room treatment, rehab, and therapy of gunshot victims. And if you/we can't afford that, then can you/we afford the gun and the inherent risk of owning it?

I have paintball guns. They aren't lethal. They look like "real" guns. Their ammo stings. If I point it at someone, s/he may think twice about coming on my porch and figuring out if my gun will kill or not. If I shoot someone with a paintball gun, I will likely leave a bruise but it's unlikely I will kill them. Who needs more than that? Honestly?

Guns and domestic violence:

I think we should take domestic violence more seriously than we do in this country. Background checks are a joke right now because domestic violence is not discovered and prosecuted the way it needs to be. Maybe then this talented singer, Christina Grimmie, wouldn't be dead. She died the same weekend as the nightclub shooting, also in Florida. And she won't get half the attention of Michael Jackson or Prince because another tragedy happened too soon after hers. Too bad nobody killed her on a slow news week.

The Pulse night club shooter had a history of domestic violence. And after the shooting, his WIFE was taken in for questioning. How much sense does that make? But in this country, we blame victims for the things done to them all the time. We proved that most recently when a man was convicted of THREE FELONIES against a girl who was unconscious and the judge only gave him a six month sentence. Worried that jail would be bad for HIM. I never want that guy to own a gun. I don't want his victim to fear his retaliation for his pathetic jail sentence. We already know he doesn't believe he was responsible. We know he isn't remorseful. How much more are we willing to put up with? How fast can you swim? Hold long can you breathe underwater?

I want to stick to the facts, but it's hard not to be emotional. The FACT is people are dying because people intend to kill them or people are not using their guns safely. The FACT is that we don't respect and prosecute domestic violence in this country, and our inaction leads perpetrators to even greater acts of violence. The FACT is that black lives matter, and we have a history of unarmed black people getting shot by cops at alarming rates. The FACT is that we have such a big mess in this country -- a huge KNOT -- that there is no wrong place to start in unraveling the thing. We have to find a place, dig in, and work carefully, piece by piece, to unravel the thread.

We can't uncut any threads of lives we have lost. We can use what we have learned from those losses. The sit-in may be over, but gun violence isn't. It's a massive issue with tons of moving parts. But the killers behind the guns cannot win. We have to make sure only love can.

Finally -- For the other arguments:

"Some people are on the No Fly list that shouldn't be." That doesn't mean that everyone on the No Fly list is innocent. I think #noflynobuy is sensible gun legislation. If you find out you're on it and shouldn't be, get help to get off it. "Everybody wants to take my guns." Are you a mass murderer? Are you planning to kill someone? Then I don't know who you think is planning to take your gun. Police are far too busy prosecuting real crimes -- and if they aren't, then they should be, and we need to work on THAT. Not protecting every mass murderer out there because you're afraid of someone taking your TOY. Your very deadly toy. "People commit mass homicide with things other than guns." Yeah, and it's been addressed by legislature.

"I need a high speed weapon for XYZ." Then you don't need a gun, you need more practice with video games. If you can't hit the broad side of a barn without an assault rifle, you need a good gun instructor and to NOT TOUCH a gun until you have respect for it. Many people buy a gun for protection only to have it used against them. Don't be a statistic.

I know there are more. I am beyond caring. "I see dead people." And they didn't have to be dead. To continue to protect the murderers is to exercise complete disregard for human life. Too bad if you don't get it. Grow up and grow a conscience. Play video games or laser tag, like my son does. Find a new hobby. I promise, you are not a well regulated militia, either because you are not a militia or because if you are a militia, I doubt you are well regulated. I will refrain from suggesting you are illiterate, or lacking critical thinking skills, but such questions remain the elephants in the room, if you catch my drift. The second amendment does not apply to you. Your argument is invalid.

Phyl Campbell is Author, Mother, Dreamer. She writes on a variety of topics: Education, Women/Feminism/Equality, Book Reviews, and Writing. Her books are available on AmazonIf you'd like to see her speak at an upcoming function, contact her via her website or Facebook page.
Related article: No, I don't wish...

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Venue for Writing Class!!

I'm so pleased to announce that my
class will be held at the 
in Watkinsville, GA.

Ann truly understands the need for artists to be creative while someone else handles the business end of things. I feel like a HUGE weight has been lifted from my shoulders.

First class will be Tuesday, June 14, from 9-12. 

Here are samples of books from last year:

And a link to all the titles available on Amazon.

I also have a new pamphlet/brochure. You can see it here:

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Media Kits and Shoestring Budgets

When trying to prepare for a book launch tour on a shoestring budget, don't do what I did and do an internet search on marketing. Unless you enjoy feeling depressed.

So many people out there are willing to you how they made a million dollars selling their fiction. You just need to believe in your abilities and write them a check for hundreds of dollars. 

And what is sad is not only that so many chumps fall for the obvious scams, but that paying to get ahead is now the standard business model for marketing. We know it takes money to make money. We know that businesses have to have initial capital investments. And most of that money seems to go to advertising. Ugh! Ugh! Ugh!

But when so many human beings and five percent of pets decide to earn money writing books, banks are unwilling to loan money to authors to start businesses. And most people that see themselves as authors/artists mentally put the word "starving" in front of that. They think they must starve for their art. Our society perpetuates the dual myths of overnight success and starving artistry.

But among all the pieces of advertising that yearn to be spam, I found a decent template for a media kit from Joan Stewart. (Ignore her media kit templates unless you are NOT operating on a shoestring. You will be sad.)

So I am working on my media kit now. Wish I hadn't written so many books -- because needing different length blurbs for each one and trying to stay OFF auto-pilot when I want them done years ago  -- but I digress. I'm proud of those books. And I will get through this. 

So that's my post for today. Back to work.

Phyl Campbell is Author, Mother, Dreamer. Sometimes the Mother and Dreamer get in the way of the Author, and the Author has to catch up. Check out her author page on Amazon. 

Other articles of interest:
Finding Pink Elephants
A Muse Meant
Quick and Dirty Publishing Guide