Archives for December 2013

Investing in 2014: To Be or Not To Be?

stock investingI’ve spent a lot of time thinking about 2014 and my financial goals for the year. To be completely honest, working as a self-employed individual (with two jobs) is really not easy. I do have some debt – much of it medical and part of it from a few marketing risks I’ve taken. Life when your income is inconsistent isn’t necessarily easy.

In looking at my financial goals, I did end up making a list of a few things I want to accomplish in 2014. The list is rather ambitious, but it gives me things to work towards. I’m not too ashamed to share the goals, so here they are:

  • Tackle tax obligations (I am currently on a payment plan)
  • Pay off all medical debt (might be the easiest thing I do)
  • Pay off at least 50% of other debts (there is some credit card debt, also in part due to medical debt; and partially from marketing)
  • Find finds to purchase a newer used vehicle (our used car is not as safe as it could be, and likely on its last legs)
  • Immediately begin saving funds for a new computer (mine shows serious signs of death in the hopefully distant future, but I need it to work from home)

These aren’t necessarily listed in order of importance, but I want to point something out. I did not, anywhere in my list of financial goals, prioritize saving for retirement or investing. [Read more…]

The Spot Writers: Family Secrets

spotsWelcome to the Spot Writers segment for this week. This week’s contribution comes from Deborah Dera. The prompt for the past few weeks has been to choose an item and write about why your character stole it. Deborah’s piece morphed a bit from the prompt, and is in no way, shape, or form a true story.

Next week’s prompt will come from RC Bonitz, author of A LITTLE BIT OF BLACKMAIL, A LITTLE BIT OF BABY, and A BLANKET FOR HER HEART.


Family Secrets

I knew there wasn’t much I could do about it, but I always convinced myself I had to try – again, and again, and again. The private conversations worked for a couple of days, resulting in the sudden disappearance of his secret stash and several hours of lucidity. Family interventions resulted in tears, promises, and – at most – two or three weeks of cleanliness. Getting picked up for possession should have resulted in about a month of sobriety, but it didn’t. There were too many suppliers in the prison. [Read more…]

The Spot Writers: The Vase

spotsWelcome to the Spot Writers. This week the prompt is to have a character explain why they stole something. 

Today’s contribution comes from Catherine MacKenzie. Her most recent publication, BETWEEN THESE PAGES, is a compilation of 18 short stories. The book is available on Amazon and Smashwords


The Vase

Fragmented snakes twist around broken and chipped Chinese men. Hopelessly, their glossy faces—both snakes and men—glare at me, perhaps begging to be put out of their misery. I want to help, but it’s too late. At one time they were safe—when, healthy and whole, they leered from a two-foot-high porcelain vase. Now, it’s a puzzle as to where one slimy snake begins and another ends. [Read more…]

The Spot Writers: Stealing Time

spotsThe following tale is told by Abigail, the main character in Val Muller’s work-in-progress. It’s a post-disaster sci-fi tale in which Abigail struggles to keep a barren earth from falling into a complete wasteland. You can learn more about Val at or, with holiday sales going on at


Stealing Time

I took it. No trade, no payment. I just took it and ran. But I had to.

The wire coil was in the best shape of any wire I’ve found. It’s just thick enough to do the job, and there’s enough of it. I’m one step closer to the desalinizer now. That is, I’ll be one step closer assuming I make it back. I’m sure Herrity will discover it’s missing soon, and of course he’ll know I took it. But I couldn’t pay him. Not in any of the ways he wanted. I’m hoping he sleeps through to the dawn. Then I’ll be long gone. [Read more…]