7 Ways to Become an Unstoppable Productive Samurai Sword

Credit: samburley.deviantart.com

  There’s a game on my iPhone I absolutely love. Veggie Samurai. The game is simple, you get veggies thrown in the air while you destroy them with your Samurai sword before time runs out. The sound of the sword slicing these veggies in half is fiercely powerful. My favorite mode is Hardcore Mode: You have one life. No second chances. No mistakes or face instant death! Shit got serious. I want to do this. Delete, cut, chop, slice all the bullshit in my life. I wrote this post three weeks ago. Then I let it sit on my draft folder waiting for a second proofread. I don’t have time. …

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Datos curiosos de Gabriel García Márquez y como se hace un escritor

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Crecí leyendo grandes autores de Latinoamérica. El venezolano Miguel Otero Silva me mató con sus Casas Muertas. Me involucré tanto en la trama que hubiese dado lo que no tenía por mudarme a Ortiz, un pueblito mínimo en la obra, lo mas irónico del caso es que detesto los pueblos pero este no sé, tenía algo especial, quizá era Carmen Rosa -la protagonista- si eso mismito fue, me identifiqué mucho con su personaje quizá por la soledad con la que se le veía. Tengo la mala costumbre de auto-invitarme al elenco de un libro. Siempre soy la que hace de testigo silencioso. Un profesor en el liceo nos asignó  Rómulo …

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Iguana Mama!

My son Isaac about to taste a yummy iguana

  I spent one year in Southeast Asia -Vietnam. It was an incredible experience that made me want to go back for more. Here are three things you will experience while in Nam. 1.- Not a laughing matter: Do not laugh when they tell you their favorite food is dog. No, seriously. I was teaching English in Vietnam and one day I decided to do favorites (colors, places, foods, etc.), so I asked my students to tell me their favorite ________________ (fill in the blank). All was good until I asked about food; what’s your favorite food? I asked. Suddenly I had a bunch of eager little hands up in the …

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Nuggets of Wisdom in a Boatload of Trash

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I enjoy reading negative reviews on Amazon. In fact, many times that’s all I read. Who cares about reading reviews that agree with me? I like the juice of people being disappointed and venting. I wonder how many of these negative reviewers would have the courage to attend one of the author’s presentations and tell him in person exactly how they feel about his book. Anyway, reading negatives gives me an opposite perspective where hopefully some insight or wisdom can be gained? Maybe. So I was reading some of the worst reviews for James Altucher’s new book   and among them I found one that read, “Nuggets of wisdom in a boatload …

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Good Intentions, Bad Results

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His anxiety was building up in his chubby baby face. My son Isaac is 11, but still has that undeniably baby face. I once took him to a place where no children under 13 were allowed. I lied and said he was 13. Mmmm, said the officer at the gate looking at him, you know that look, where the lips come together and swing to the right. “Is HE 13?!” asked the officer now raising his eyebrows. Yup -I replied. They let us in. Anyway, that day he was worried sick. All of the sudden he shouted, Mom! should I go to college to become a cook or should I create a …

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Confessions of a Perfctionist

Tranquility over Guatemala

A few nights ago, as I was falling asleep, I got company. It crawled in bed with me and whispered me something. I can’t remember what it was because I was half asleep, but that’s the way perfection works, it kisses me right when I’m the most vulnerable. The next morning I got up feeling perfect and in control, not good. By now I recognize the pattern, just like a roller coaster, the calm that comes right before the drop. Less than two hours later a flurry of endless thoughts, plans, the blueprints for my life. When my perfectionism kicks in, fear runs in spiral and just being becomes a nightmare. …

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Dame, quiero

approval-addict

Si te digo que soy adicta, que es lo primero que se te viene a la cabeza? Drogas, alcohol, cigarros? Esto es lo que generalmente pensamos cuando usamos ese término, las adicciones obvias, nos imaginamos alguien que usa jeringas y camina andrajoso por las calle. También hay otro grupo de adicciones, y van desde ser adicto a la televisión, al Facebook, al café, al Internet, al trabajo, a la comida, etc. Estas también son relativamente fáciles de disecar pues abarcan mucho de nuestro tiempo. La verdad sea dicha, soy adicta. Lo reconozco. Todos lo somos. Nadie es inmune a ellas. Pero hay una serie de adicciones que son las mas sutiles y que se las ingenian para colarse …

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Let’s Just Not Talk About it

GothDeathAngel

“Congratulations!” I said with my biggest smile to my Vietnamese neighbor standing right outside his house. For about three days I had noticed how my neighbors -a few houses down the street- were diligently decorating their house. There were chairs and tables -with their matching table cloths- chair bows, incense, the works! All sitting outside and ready to be arranged under the big white tents. Every so often you would see motorbikes (very few cars in Vietnam) delivering food, trays of fresh fruits, vegetables and meat making their way into the house. People coming in and out -all dressed in white- and then, a rare sight, a small flatbed truck delivering even more goodies. …

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Confesiones de una perfeccionista imperfcta

Tranquility over Guatemala

Anoche vino y me visitó. Se metió en mi cama y bajo las sábanas blancas me susurró algo al oído. La verdad no recuerdo bien que me dijo pues estaba soñolienta, pero la perfección es así, se aprovecha cuando estoy indefensa para trabajarme el subconsciente. Sé que estuvo anoche aquí porque hoy en la mañana me desperté tranquila, creyendo saber el rumbo exacto que tomará mi vida, ja! la calma que precede a la tempestad. El torbellino mental ya lo veía venir. Es unos de esos días donde mi cabeza empieza a dar vueltas en espiral y se transforma en una charla constante, de pensamientos y planes más largos que un desfile e’ culebras. …

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The Middle Finger

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All of a sudden, the guy driving in the white Mustang behind me zooms in and -while I’m making a right turn- cuts right in front of me, slams on the brakes briefly, sticks out his arm and gives me the finger. He then drove like this (with his middle finger sticking up) long enough until my son Isaac, who was with me in the car, noticed it. “Mom, did that guy just give you the finger?” he asked. I said, “yes, he did,” trying not to laugh as not to give him any ideas. I was still thinking about the whole incident when I got to the red light …

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Jesús, Buda y yo

Jesus Buda Mediana

“Pero tu eres venezolana, ¿no se supone que los venezolanos son Católicos?” Me decía Alan, un Judío al que había conocido hace algunos meses atrás. “¿Por que eres Budista?” Me pregunto algo desconcertado. La pregunta me dejó pensativa pues bien la manera como cruce el puente del Cristianismo al Budismo es una travesía que abarca unos doce años. Y si, Alan tenía razón, soy una venezolana que practica el Budismo Tibetano, eso me pone como una minoría entre las minorías, mas aún cuando mi papá fue reverendo Presbiteriano de una iglesia muy reconocida en Caracas. Aunque vengo de un país donde el catolicismo abunda, nací en una familia Cristiano-Evangélica. De …

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Cuando estas harto, solo y te sientes como Gollum

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Párate Priscilla, párate! Abrí los ojos de golpe y tenía una mariposa revoloteandome en la cara, del susto brinque de la cama, miré el reloj -cuatro de la madrugada de ayer domingo, bella manera de empezar el día. Del susto no pude acostarme otra vez así que me fui a la cocina a “pensar”. Mi cabeza, que no pierde tiempo metiéndome miedos raros empezó, Priscilla, Isaac (mi hijo que se iba de vacaciones con su papá) se va hoy y te vas a quedar sola, sin tu hijo, sin novio, sin nadie, sola! “Ay ya cállate,” le dije. A veces creo que hay varias Priscillas viviendo conmigo (si, porque yo soy la verdadera Priscilla, las demás …

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Por favor, quítate el condón

Condoms-story

Deje de salir con un muchacho debido que no había manera que se quitara el condón, el condón psicológico y emocional, ese que evita que experiences la vida en su totalidad y a plenitud. Matt era el tipo de persona siempre súper precavido a la hora de decidir algo. Siempre me decía, no se puede vivir así Priscilla, del timbo al tambo, sin echar raíces en ningún lado. Esta conversa la tuvimos justo después que un día le comente que me estaba pensando irme a la India de vacaciones el año que viene. Soy maestra certificada para la enseñanza del Inglés y esa sería una manera de ganarme la vida …

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Please, Take Off Your Condom

Condoms-story

I stopped dating Matt because he wouldn’t take off his condom. He needed protection, a safe ground to step on, safety first, always. You can’t be a free spirit, you need roots, you need a place to call home, you need a safety net, he said. That was his reaction when I told him that I was thinking about visiting India next year. I’m a big advocate for exploring every single corner of the world. He was a big advocate for settling in just one corner. Forever. The problem with this approach is that experiencing life all wrapped up is like showering with socks. Try and see if you like …

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How to Cancel the Noise in a World that Won’t Stop Talking

go to bed early

After hours of waiting in the airport eating stale food and listening to announcements about my flight being delayed, I was looking forward to getting on that plane and reading my book, I needed to disconnect. I had found my seat, then a sweet lady sat next to me, we both acknowledged each other with a smile. The easiest way to get in trouble is by making eye contact and smiling -at the same time. She started telling me about how her best friend betrayed her and how this TV show was really bad, her dog was sick, she needed a tooth crown and something about the neighbor having lots of partners …

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Que hacer cuando la gente es despota

This is how I pictured her

“Creo que eres de lo peor y se perfectamente quien eres, menos mal que me acuerdo de tu nombre para no comprarte mas nunca, eres de lo peor…un bochorno total…mentirosa, no cuentes mas nunca conmigo….” Vendo libros en Amazon y recién acababa de salir de la ducha cuando leí este correo, una clienta muy molesta con el libro que había recibido. Detesto cuando mis clientes no están satisfechos con sus compras, tiendo a ser perfeccionista y cuando las cosas no salen perfectamente como lo tengo planeado me entra el complejo de inferioridad. El correo de ella me mortifico tanto que decidí rembolsarle su dinero inmediatamente –incluyendo el envío y le escribí …

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Haters, Amazon and a Hook

This could be the most lethal weapon, ever.

“I think it’s awful and I’ll remember your name so as not to do business with you again…Just sucks…this is a real embarrassment. This just sucks. I won’t buy anything from you agian [sic], you can’t even tell the truth….” I sell books on Amazon. I had just gotten out of the shower when I got this email, a customer being unhappy about her order. Being a perfectionist and a people pleaser I was beyond disappointed with this outcome. I don’t like it when I under-deliver, to me it’s a sign of weakness. I don’t want to be weak. So overall is not my intention to piss people off, let alone when money is …

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6 cosas que puedes hacer cuando la inspiracion para escribir se te ha ido al suelo

Mine is not nearly as fancy but still very yummy!

Ya hace más de veinte años que compre ese cuaderno rosado, ese donde acostumbraba a escribir todo lo que me pasaba por la mente. Esa era la época cuando escribir significaba sentarse con una pluma y un papel por delante. En mi cuaderno ponía citas de gente como Albert Einstein, Victor Hugo, Gabriel Garcia Marquez y Khalil Gibran. Esto fue mucho antes que existiera el Facebook y el Twitter, en ese entonces nadie tenía un “blog” y los Blackberries eran una fruta comestible. La cosa es que por alguna razón un día deje de escribir, sabía que algún día lo retomaría y lo más curioso es que aunque detesto el rosado, todavía conservo mi cuaderno de …

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6 Things You Can Do When You Want to Write but Your Brain Says No

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It was well over twenty years ago that I bought that pink notebook. I would write stuff going through my head at the time and would quote guys like Albert Einstein, Victor Hugo, Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Khalil Gibran. I started writing in my teenage years, way before Facebook, Penelope Trunk or James Altucher’s spectacular blog. But for some reason I stopped writing altogether, I knew I’ll eventually start writing again. I just didn’t have a deadline. I hate pink but I still have that pink notebook. After setting up a website and a blog -and twenty something years later-  I was finally ready to start writing again. On that day, I sat at my computer and …

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