Hello Prosers! It is nice to be back after a much needed writing hiatus. I always take time away from my writing to live a little, to reflect and rejuvenate my mind. It is really nice that my life affords me the necessary peace to do so, which brings me to the topic for today: Dealing with people at your level of peace.
I talk about peace so much in my blog posts because I had so little of it for most of my life. Now that I have found a place of unwavering peace, I shield it from all things that threaten it’s existence.
There was a time in my life when I was quick to cut people off for the smallest of slights. Throughout my spiritual growth, I have learned to be more understanding towards others. If God did not give up on me when I was at my absolute worst and if I am to be more like Christ the deeper I go in my spiritual walk; it only makes sense to extend the same kindness to those who transgress against me. The only perfect being to have ever lived was Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. The rest of us are flawed, sinful and battling tribulation and the temptation to be even more sinful.
With this knowledge, I now understand that my expectations in the past were very unrealistic towards people. People will fail me, they will hurt me, they will lie to me, they will anger me and they will even desert me at times. And you know what, that is ok, because I am guilty of doing the same things to people throughout my life. Life is full of seasons, and if I have learned nothing else, it is that our lives are a constant evolution. In understanding that evolution, I had to come to terms with how I should maintain my peace with others, with myself and with life in general.
For me, there is a priority circle. The priority circle consists of the few people that deserve my going above and beyond for them. I go out of my way to be thoughtful towards them, understanding and there for them in their times of need. In life, not everything takes priority, so of course, not everyone is apart of this priority circle of mine. Most of the people in my priority circle are individuals where the majority of the time spent with them, I can maintain my peace of mind. It goes without saying that there is no one on earth that will afford me absolute peace; only God affords that and He is who I turn to when I need absolution. I spend the majority of my time with my priority circle and it brings me a lot of joy to do so.
There are those outside of the priority circle where peace is a little more fleeting, but for the most part, I am able to maintain enough peace to keep them around a little more often than others. But the last group, the ones were my peace is definitely challenged regularly, I limit my interactions with them altogether. This is the group I used to go cold turkey with and whitewash them completely from my life. I now simply interact with them in small increments since the risk is too great for my overall peace of mind. I no longer feel the need to eliminate them from my life and let me explain why.
My walk with God is important. It is so important that I share my walk, my testimonies, and the devotionals I learn from with the world (check out the Mara Prose Daily Devotionals Facebook Group). If I cutoff the individuals in my life who prove to be more challenging, I could miss the opportunity to share a message that they may need to hear. God has saved me and really brought me out of a place of selfish blindness. Being hateful towards others is foreign to me now, when it used to be second nature to me. Lies, manipulations and false promises are a thing of the past for me. If He can turn my life around, just think what he can do for those still lost in the wilderness but stumble across my path?
You see, God wastes nothing. We can learn something from even the most difficult of people and they can learn something from us. I am not speaking of people who abuse you; they deserve to be cut out of your life without explanation. But for the ones that simply bring some type of strife, there could be something they see in me that convicts them to become a better person. I never want to miss the opportunity to testify to someone.
It’s funny, in my twenties and thirties I used to post every aspect of my life on Facebook. Now in my forties, I rarely post anything of a personal nature which has led some to ask me if I was a real person on Facebook. While I am a lot more private about my personal life, I am actually very transparent in my writing. I used to be transparent with my life, but not with the challenges I faced. None of my followers could do anything with the superficiality I used to spout on a regular basis (outside of rolling their eyes and probably sighing ‘here she goes again’). What I should have been posting is how I was overcoming life challenges because there could have been something in my experiences that prevented another person from making a grave mistake. Silence on social media used to represent turmoil in my life, thank God it now represents peace and joy! But I actually am never really silent, I just share things that educate, entertain or encourage others to find a right relationship with the Lord as opposed to insignificant selfies, what I am eating or where I am vacationing.
What is so freeing about this methodology is that it costs me nothing and it frees me from a lot. By practicing selective silence, I have been fortunate to drop a lot of deadbeats in my life. I realize there are individuals who would like to get to know me better, be closer to me and work their way into my priority circle. But people are draining to me, especially the ones who are not meant to be close to you. I never outgrow my priority circle, I find the people in that circle grow right along with me but more importantly, they are deeply etched into my heart. Outside of that circle, I regularly outgrow friendships and other relationships and thus, these people will always be kept at a distance because I will only interact with them at the level of peace I am able to maintain.
I grow and die to self daily. I crave knowledge and that often causes me to become bored with those who are not seeking a higher purpose. It is not an affront to people who do not seek out truth, it just happens to be where I am at this point in my life and I will not apologize for it. The elevation God has shown me leaves no room for any tag-alongs nor for anyone content with the stagnation in their life (i.e. those unwilling to change). I share this because I want people to stop allowing other people’s insecurities, hate and lack of self-awareness to destroy their peace. We live in a world where selfishness trumps all and is regularly celebrated in our society. This is the very reason there is so little peace in the world. I realized it was selfish of me to expect people to meet all my expectations of who I felt they should be, how they should act and how they should respond to situations presented to them in life. We are all so horribly flawed and we all have to operate in the way best suited to who we are as a person and when people do not, it really is none of my concern as long I handle myself accordingly. I have little tolerance for all those who expect otherwise.
I leave all my Prosers with this: identify who should be apart of your Priority Circle and deal less with everyone outside of that circle. Dealing less with those outside of my priority circle is not only a way of life, it has become a means of survival. Caring less about the non-priority circle has brought me a better quality of life. I refuse to extend the same energy to everyone; it is impossible to do so anyway. So I am choosing to reserve that energy for a select few and the rest, oh well, get in where you fit in is my motto. I am often reluctant to leave the serenity of my life and this means it is a lot more difficult to reach me by phone, text or instant message. I no longer believe in people having instant access to me because I am dealing with everyone at the level of peace I can maintain. I carve out pockets of time to respond to the non-priority circle people I know and once that time has passed, it becomes just that, the past. So for those who question my realness, I guess if being real means I have to post on social media or respond instantly to you, I am very happy to disappoint. My serenity is not up for public viewing. I can only operate at the level of peace that is afforded to me.
Until next time,
FREE PROLOGUE AVAILABLE UNDER THE DAVENPORT SERIES TAB AT WWW.MARAPROSE.BLOG FOR
THE DAVENPORTS: CRESCENDO (BOOK 2 OF THE SERIES COMING SOON!)
Happy Monday, Prosers! Yesterday, I celebrated my 43rd birthday. As per my usual tradition, I want to share with you the growth I have achieved over this past year. 43 finds me in very unfamiliar territory, but it is a territory full of self awareness, true confidence and most importantly, absolute peace of mind.
I love to share my journey with others in the hope someone will stumble across my writing and be inspired enough to press on despite any adversary they may be facing at the time. If you have read my poetic testimonial, The Journey to Mara Prose, you are well aware of the many battles I have faced with trauma bonds, depression and anxiety. Finally, at the age of 43 I have not only found my voice, but also have found my identity, my purpose and self love. My journey is far from complete, but who I am now is exactly who I have been working towards for the past three years. So let’s begin with some of the areas that I witnessed the most growth.
This past year has been a wonderful year of growth in my relationship with my daughter. There was a period of time where she was very angry with me about my divorce from her father a few years back, and unfortunately, I did a poor job in validating her feelings and nursing her through it. I have always wanted us to be thick as thieves, and we finally are at that point. We may still butt heads, bicker and get on one another’s nerves, but it is only because we are so alike; and that is scary LOL! With her leaving for college this Fall, I am cherishing every moment with her, and I finally feel confident that I am setting the appropriate examples for her to become successful at life. Special shout out to my baby boy Xavier Floyd, where it goes without saying that there will always be a deep connection and unbreakable bond between us. I simply Thank God for the blessing of them.
What initially started as a journey to simply find more love for myself, has turned into mastering the ability to find love for everyone. The past three years, I have been bitter, afraid and self defeating at times. I have been closed off and intolerant, afraid to get too close to anyone. But in the past year, I have been awarded the art of discernment. I know when to let someone in, and when to keep my distance. I work to lead by example in all areas of my life so that others will find their own self love. I am not talking about romantic relationships, I am speaking on all my interpersonal relationships. I now understand that there will be times that people I adore will inadvertently hurt me, or maybe even purposely hurt me. But with the self loving I provide myself on a daily basis, I know not to take these instances too personally. You never know the battles someone else is facing, and it is best to always try your best to handle everyone with care. It is true that you receive what you put out into the world, so I choose to be loving, empathetic and caring to most, just as I would want them to exert those same qualities towards me.
One of my more recent revelations to self, is the fact that I have been emotionally immature for a good portion of my life. This immaturity has caused me a lot of pain, strife, guilt and condemnation. I recently told someone I love deeply that when you know better, you do better, but you cannot do better until you know better. This will be a controversial statement and will offend some, but to face yourself is courage and to avoid it is cowardice. Too bad the world is full of many cowards. It is hard and painful realizing that most of the time you are your own worst enemy, but at the same time, it is the most freeing and wonderful release to accept that knowledge. I exhaled for the first time this year, and finally realize exactly what Terry McMillan was stating in her book “Waiting to Exhale.” I truly believe I have been waiting to exhale for the past ten years of my life. From this revelation, I now keep certain sermons and life coaching videos on repeat daily and have made them a lifestyle change. I want to continue to grow, mature and form an even deeper connection with God, because He is my one true father and knows what is best for me and will continue to guide me towards being the best version of me. If you take away nothing else from this blog post, please take away the fact that working daily on your emotional maturity is paramount to your life.
I realize for the past year, I have been praying away the wrong strongholds. While my prayers were primarily focused on strongholds towards a person, God revealed to me recently that the strongholds that I should be praying away were all centered around me. Selfishness, tunnel vision, pride, envy and a strong fear of missing out were actually the strongholds that I should have been praying away. I should have been praying away the constant need for validation, and I should have been praying away anything that opposed my being authentic not only with others, but mostly with myself. At 43, the only stronghold I need is one with God. It is important to cast away all negative strongholds, because just as Joyce Meyer’s states “where the mind goes, the flesh follows.” You need to be controlled by the desires of the spirit and not the flesh. Believe me, life is so much easier, happier and carefree when you think the right things on purpose and practice self discipline in all matters of the mind.
There is a lot more growth I would love to share with you, but that will now be done via The Mara Prose Podcast – Prosey’s Corner, found on Spotify and iHeartRadio. Nicky and I will not only interview talented individuals, we will have individual discussions among ourselves on various topics and I will also have several solo shows where I expound upon and share how I continue to grow, mature and seek out my purpose.
In regards to book 2 of The Davenports, we are simply waiting for the links to go live on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. In the meantime, be sure to visit Barnes & Noble.com or Amazon. com to purchase your copy of the first book in the Davenports series: The Davenports: A Battle of Wills. Finally! Not too much longer until all my followers are able to return to the epic world of corruption, greed, power and the tormented love affair between Alessandra Davenport and Steven Kane.
Until next time,
Happy Mara Prose Monday!! If you missed this past Saturday’s Prosey’s Corner, you missed an amazing show!! You can catch the replay LISTEN HERE. We shared our time with the super talented and oh so fun group of the new TV series, Scared Stiff. Please check them out on YouTube, follow them on Facebook and visit their ETSY store to help support them with purchases of their cool merchandise.
It has been a while since I shared a testimonial, recent experience or shed a little inspiration in a dark world. Today, I want to share something with my Prosers that came to me in meditation. Last year, those close to me became privy to the fact that my intuition told me that 2020 would be the year I find myself in a relationship. I have spent the past three years finding and refining who Mara is, what she stands for and the direction she plans to take herself.
Well, this weekend as I was out shopping and pampering myself, it hit me that the relationship I was anticipating is with MYSELF! I am taking care of my mind, my body and my soul for the first time in a long while. I am back to wanting to look and feel good – working out, watching what I eat, and my love for fashion has returned. But this time around, it all is well balanced. I am not overdoing anything involved with my weight loss like I did in the past. I am not overspending at the mall like I did in the past. And I only keep people around that bring me peace of mind and support who I am – ALL THAT I AM.
So what I want to leave you with is that sometimes, it is not about looking for someone else to compliment your life. Sometimes it is simply about looking and finding YOU and allowing YOU to compliment your life. I can honestly say I have never been happier than I am right now and I pray this euphoria becomes absolutely contagious to whoever reads this blog post.
Until next time, spend time focusing on a relationship with SELF!
~ Author Mara Prose
I learned a long time ago that perception does not equate to reality. Our society is built on nothing but perception. We look at pictures daily via social media and believe what we see based off of a single moment in time. We are all guilty of making false assumptions based on little evidence. Nothing irks me more than people who feel they know you based off of a social media post, meme or a brief encounter.
Perception is dangerous in my opinion. It is far too easy to accept everything at face value and in doing so, we become lazy in our relationships. We do not take the time to learn, understand and most importantly, accept one another’s differences. It also places the person who is being perceived at an unfair advantage because the perceptions generally come with unrealistic expectations that are based on ideals that do not really exist. Yes, that is a mouthful, but it is the truth. We need to stop projecting and begin to focus on everyone’s true attributes. We all have many sides to our personality and for me personally, it is frustrating and annoying to be pigeon-holed into the many false perceptions of who I am that exist today. Granted, I do not show all sides of me but then again, I am not always able to, because it is simply too irritating to try to change one’s warped view of who you are.
I am deeply saddened at the state of our world. A lot of times it is so much easier and peaceful to stay far removed from it all. The message today for what it is worth, is to stop judging and start learning to relate more and stop making ASS-umptions about everyone else. Stop looking only at the surface and stop the false pretenses you maintain with others. We need to work towards more meaningful relationships with one another and embrace our differences with love, kindness and peace.
Until next time, keep those you love very, very close.
~Author Mara Prose
We often hear the phrase “seeds grow”. Planting seeds throughout life is imperative to your growth. I have planted many seeds over the past year – some I am still watering, some are starting to sprout and some have become full grown trees for me to nurture, treasure and cherish. When I speak of seed planting, I am speaking of more than a gardening practice, I am speaking of practicing the art of planting spiritual seeds towards a purposeful life.
To conceive and give birth to the miracles you need, you must first plant God’s Word like a seed in your heart. Conception cannot take place without first planting the seed. I constantly meet Christians who pray and believe for God’s intervention in their lives, but remain frustrated with the results. It’s because they are missing the seeds of conception; they just don’t know God’s Word. You can cheat or manipulate nearly all systems that men have created. The legal system can be beaten, allowing the guilty to go free. Our educational system can be beaten, passing students who have not mastered the material. But you can’t change seed, time and harvest. Some people put God’s Word in their hearts for a day or two, but if they don’t see fruit almost immediately, they dig up the seed through their words and actions and wonder why they are forced into a period of stagnation. You have to sow it into the ground over time. Many people are impatient, wanting to bypass the growth cycle and skip the entire growth process. I’ve actually had to tell people that what they were believing God for was not going to happen, not because the vision wasn’t good, but because they were expecting a complete ear of corn immediately. (Andrew Womack)
Living intentionally means to align yourself with your purpose. You do so by ‘planting seeds’ for future growth. Planting seeds is nothing more than planning your life goals, wants and desires and working to bring them all to fruition. Without a road map for your life, it is far too easy to be lead astray. I encourage everyone to dig deep inside themselves, shut out friends, family members and all naysayers and really focus on the internal voice of the Holy Spirit and allow that to be your guide. There are so many people that feel they know what is best for you, but only YOU know what is in your best interest. Never be afraid to push back and set boundaries against anyone.
Everything I have ever wanted in my life has started with a seed, an initial thought, a meditation if you will. When these thoughts become repetitive and turn into a strong desire, I know then a seed has been planted and it is up to me and me alone, to ensure that I am committed, disciplined and focused to turn that seed in something more. Please do not wait on anyone else to water your seeds. But at the same time, remember that it is not all about obtaining your heart’s desires, it is about sowing in others as well.
Lord, save us from anything outward and anything that is not of life! Deepen the flow of life until it becomes something flowing out of us as many rivers to water others! Lord, make us the sowers with the seeds of life. We don’t want to be merely teaching others but imparting life seeds into them! Make us those who plant Christ into others – by having a rich experience of Christ as life! O, Lord, bring us fully in the way of life even in our working with You and for You!
When, Where and How to Plant Seeds
Plant Purposeful Seeds in Your Families
Plant Purposeful Seeds in All of Your Relationships
Plant Purposeful Seeds in Your Career
Plant Purposeful Seeds in Your Finances
Remember, the key world is Purposeful!
Happy Glorious Monday, Prosers! I pray you had a wonderful weekend, and hopefully you were able to catch our first show of the new season of Prosey’s Corner this past Saturday. If not, you are in a for a real treat! Nicky and I had the distinct pleasure of promotion-ally conversing with Jeffery L. Miller and Kiland Lee. You can listen to the rebroadcast by clicking on the following link Prosey’s Corner Season 2 Episode 1.
We are coming closer to the official release date of The Davenports: Crescendo! If you have not read the first installment, The Davenports: A Battle of Wills, then please visit Amazon or Barnes&Noble.com to get your copy today!
For today’s topic of discussion, I would like to talk about the misuse of the term, narcissist. Most people use this word far too loosely. Pop culture often attaches this label to a wide variety of people who exhibit difficult and offensive personalities. It is important to understand that vanity and selfishness do not necessarily equate to Narcissistic Personality Disorder, which is a distinct set of traits that are a far cry from being simply self-absorbed. True pathological narcissism is a clinical diagnosis, and the residual effects of dealing with a true narcissist can require years of therapy to overcome.
There are many experts who believe in a spectrum for narcissism; apparently it is a trait that a lot of us exhibit to a certain degree. On the healthier side of the spectrum, a person views themselves as unique and asserts themselves with confidence and authority. It becomes problematic when arrogance, grandiosity and entitlement interfere with daily functioning and the ability to maintain relationships.
So what is the true description of a narcissist? A narcissist preys off of the emotions of others and they manipulate other people in order to maintain their framework of self. Individuals with this disorder suffer from a debilitating set of conflicting symptoms that range from extreme dependency to superiority and disdain for others. For anyone who has been in a relationship with a narcissist, they report feeling invisible, unwanted, disregarded and their needs consistently come last; if their needs are considered at all.
It is important to remember that these are not people who have the ability to switch back and forth between a sense of normality and their disorder; it is called a personality disorder for a reason. This is who they are and this who they will always be. I feel it is important to truly distinguish between self-centeredness and narcissism. The recovery from a narcissist is an intense emotional recovery and I would like to provide a few steps to follow on that road to recovery.
I hope this helps everyone to better understand what being a narcissist entails and I encourage everyone to apply the term correctly. I am still on the fence about next week’s topic, so let’s just say it is To Be Determined.
Until next time, keep refining, keep shining, keep rising!
I am currently in the process of remastering all the episodes from previous seasons of Prosey’s Corner. There is one particular episode that included special guest Blossom Rogers, who professed a jaw-dropping testimony and my good friends Jeffery L. Miller and Jay Thomas who provided excellent dating and relationship advice.
The conversation we held made me think of my standard response when someone asks me when am I going to settle down again. I simply say “When I find someone who Matches My Stride.” I felt today would be a perfect day to clarify that response.
Of course, one of the most important areas where you want someone to Match Your Stride is in your love life. If you have ever listened to the podcast or read my good friend Andre Blaylock’s blog, you will be familiar with his saying “We Date to Mate.” Jeffery L. Miller believes there are three main reasons men and women alike, remain in the perpetual state of being single ( click here to listen to Prosey’s Corner July 28th). Lastly, Jay Thomas said we should “Talk More, Date Less” which is also explained further during this show. I just have to say again, Nicky and I enjoyed the phenomenal dating advice received during our show.
But I digress; back to “Matching My Stride.” Everyone is striding through this thing we call ‘life’ at one pace or another. Close your eyes and imagine Arabian horses running together in the wild; is that not a beautiful sight when they match each other’s stride?
Picture Courtesy of Swift Aviation
At this stage in my life, it is more important than dating with a purpose; for you can date with intention and still never find the one that matches your stride. This concept is more than ideals, it is about realistically finding the one equivalent to yourself.
For example, the man for me will have his own goals, dreams, and ambitions. He will not piggyback off of mine or diminish my shine. He will be setting his own blaze right alongside me. We will build together for “our” greater good because there is no “I” in “We.”
Another example, my ideal man must match my stride intellectually. If you cannot understand my mind or my way of communicating, you will never understand me. And I am not speaking of surface level, I am talking about that hidden information you have to purposely seek out with sincere interest, the right intentions and consistency. It is more than a “See Mara, she is a nice lady.” It is more about What is Mara about? In my opinion, it is always better when someone attempts to connect with some depth and ask meaningful questions, while being receptive to the same inquiry.
Matching my stride not only applies to dating, but to all relationships in your circle. Remember the vision of the running Arabian horses; do you picture the ones who lose their way, become distracted or cannot keep the pace? First, let me state there is nothing wrong with going in a new direction, it will happen. For our purposes, the Arabians horses that fail to maintain the pace, become easily distracted or simply dart off into a new direction would be the individuals that you leave in your dust in real life. Your focus is to stride towards your purpose with the least amount of detours you can manage. You cannot afford to go wandering off after someone who is lost from their own path. Time is of the essence; meaning the time is now for you to remain true to your path with those who match or compliment your stride.
There are several other instances where one should be cognizant of who and what matches their stride but we will save that for another Mara Prose Monday.
Today, I leave you to ponder what is your path, where should you blaze that path and who all should be allowed to light that fire with you? Always remember, it must “Match Your Stride.”
Until next time,
Author Mara Prose
Available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.com
I used to say to myself that regrets are just a part of life and there is not much you can do about them. I believed that everything I ever did in my life was exactly what I wanted to do and was supposed to do, but boy did I rack up regrets with this mindset. Feelings always guided my actions, and I now realize that was wrong. Feelings are fickle and unreliable.
With age and wisdom, I have learned to embrace my regrets. I actually have no regrets now and believe it is pointless to regret anything. Everything we do is a lesson and divinely designed to push us more towards our purpose. I used to spend a lot of time looking back, analyzing and trying to figure out what went wrong. Now, I do look back, but only to ascertain the lesson that I was supposed to learn and then I move on. Because there is so much life to live, and I don’t want to miss a thing. If I continue to look back, I miss what is in front of me. As Joyce Meyers often says, you have to enjoy everyday life and that is exactly what I am doing.
Life has a funny way of showing you just how foolish you are at the strangest times (believe me, the lessons learned rarely occur at a convenient time). I certainly cannot go back and correct all my wrongs, but I can definitely ensure that I do not repeat the same mistakes of the past. If you get stuck blaming yourself and regretting past actions, this could turn into depression and damage your self-esteem. Find a way to forgive yourself and let it go. (Psychology Today)
The act of impulse often misguides us and fosters regrets. It serves no one but the thoughtless and prideful to foolishly rush into situations without thought and meditation with God. Life is proving to be so much simpler by carefully considering the next steps I take in my journey. I block out all the distractions of the world – social media, family, friends and peers – and I pray and wait for God to guide my next steps. My intuition is a powerful tool and has yet to fail me. I follow that intuition and gut feeling, and my discipline and obedience keep me focused and on the right path. With this mindset, I am able to live regret free.
So today’s inspiration is for all my Prosers to embrace their regrets, learn from them and make sincere efforts not to repeat past mistakes. You cannot escape regrets, you can only learn from them.
~ Author Mara Prose
There she is, I fight hard to keep her at bay
I don’t recognize her but she knows me well
She remains hidden until she senses weakness
Then she dims my light and my soul is left in shambles
I don’t recognize her but she knows me well
She uses fear to hinder me
She makes me believe I don’t deserve more
She is so convincing at times, I feel like I am losing my mind
I don’t recognize her but she knows me better than I know myself
She tells me I’m failing
She pokes fun at my success
Her taunts race through my mind
Because I don’t know her but she knows me well
If I’m not careful, I will take on her persona
If I don’t practice dissonance, she will become a dominant force within me
If I don’t keep reaching for the light, her darkness will over take me
Because I don’t know her but she knows me well
~ Mara Prose
I find this Vanity Article by Nancy Jo Sales so disheartening. How empty and shallow the world has become. I was completely turned off by the men boasting of their sexual conquests in this article . However, it is not surprising in a world that celebrates being savage, living a poly lifestyle and who regularly attack others turned off by the explicitly of lyrics. It is tragic when people claim someone is talented based off of their ability to exchange a few text messages and wind up in bed with a total stranger – it is no wonder we elected someone like Trump into office. SMH! ~ Author Mara Prose
It’s a balmy night in Manhattan’s financial district, and at a sports bar called Stout, everyone is Tindering. The tables are filled with young women and men who’ve been chasing money and deals on Wall Street all day, and now they’re out looking for hookups. Everyone is drinking, peering into their screens and swiping on the faces of strangers they may have sex with later that evening. Or not. “Ew, this guy has Dad bod,” a young woman says of a potential match, swiping left. Her friends smirk, not looking up.
“Tinder sucks,” they say. But they don’t stop swiping.
At a booth in the back, three handsome twentysomething guys in button-downs are having beers. They are Dan, Alex, and Marty, budding investment bankers at the same financial firm, which recruited Alex and Marty straight from an Ivy League campus. (Names and some identifying details have been changed for this story.) When asked if they’ve been arranging dates on the apps they’ve been swiping at, all say not one date, but two or three: “You can’t be stuck in one lane … There’s always something better.” “If you had a reservation somewhere and then a table at Per Se opened up, you’d want to go there,” Alex offers.
He says that he himself has slept with five different women he met on Tinder—“Tinderellas,” the guys call them—in the last eight days. Dan and Marty, also Alex’s roommates in a shiny high-rise apartment building near Wall Street, can vouch for that. In fact, they can remember whom Alex has slept with in the past week more readily than he can.
“Brittany, Morgan, Amber,” Marty says, counting on his fingers. “Oh, and the Russian—Ukrainian?”
“Ukrainian,” Alex confirms. “She works at—” He says the name of a high-end art auction house. Asked what these women are like, he shrugs. “I could offer a résumé, but that’s about it … Works at J. Crew; senior at Parsons; junior at Pace; works in finance … ”
“We don’t know what the girls are like,” Marty says.
“And they don’t know us,” says Alex.
And yet a lack of an intimate knowledge of his potential sex partners never presents him with an obstacle to physical intimacy, Alex says. Alex, his friends agree, is a Tinder King, a young man of such deft “text game”—“That’s the ability to actually convince someone to do something over text,” Marty explains—that he is able to entice young women into his bed on the basis of a few text exchanges, while letting them know up front he is not interested in having a relationship.
“How does he do it?,” Marty asks, blinking. “This guy’s got a talent.”
But Marty, who prefers Hinge to Tinder (“Hinge is my thing”), is no slouch at “racking up girls.” He says he’s slept with 30 to 40 women in the last year: “I sort of play that I could be a boyfriend kind of guy,” in order to win them over, “but then they start wanting me to care more … and I just don’t.”
“Do you think this culture is misogynistic?” he asks lightly.
As the polar ice caps melt and the earth churns through the Sixth Extinction, another unprecedented phenomenon is taking place, in the realm of sex. Hookup culture, which has been percolating for about a hundred years, has collided with dating apps, which have acted like a wayward meteor on the now dinosaur-like rituals of courtship. “We are in uncharted territory” when it comes to Tinder et al., says Justin Garcia, a research scientist at Indiana University’s Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction. “There have been two major transitions” in heterosexual mating “in the last four million years,” he says. “The first was around 10,000 to 15,000 years ago, in the agricultural revolution, when we became less migratory and more settled,” leading to the establishment of marriage as a cultural contract. “And the second major transition is with the rise of the Internet.”
People used to meet their partners through proximity, through family and friends, but now Internet meeting is surpassing every other form. “It’s changing so much about the way we act both romantically and sexually,” Garcia says. “It is unprecedented from an evolutionary standpoint.” As soon as people could go online they were using it as a way to find partners to date and have sex with. In the 90s it was Craigslist and AOL chat rooms, then Match.com and Kiss.com. But the lengthy, heartfelt e-mails exchanged by the main characters in You’ve Got Mail (1998) seem positively Victorian in comparison to the messages sent on the average dating app today. “I’ll get a text that says, ‘Wanna fuck?’ ” says Jennifer, 22, a senior at Indiana University Southeast, in New Albany. “They’ll tell you, ‘Come over and sit on my face,’ ” says her friend, Ashley, 19.
Mobile dating went mainstream about five years ago; by 2012 it was overtaking online dating. In February, one study reported there were nearly 100 million people—perhaps 50 million on Tinder alone—using their phones as a sort of all-day, every-day, handheld singles club, where they might find a sex partner as easily as they’d find a cheap flight to Florida. “It’s like ordering Seamless,” says Dan, the investment banker, referring to the online food-delivery service. “But you’re ordering a person.”
The comparison to online shopping seems an apt one. Dating apps are the free-market economy come to sex. The innovation of Tinder was the swipe—the flick of a finger on a picture, no more elaborate profiles necessary and no more fear of rejection; users only know whether they’ve been approved, never when they’ve been discarded. OkCupid soon adopted the function. Hinge, which allows for more information about a match’s circle of friends through Facebook, and Happn, which enables G.P.S. tracking to show whether matches have recently “crossed paths,” use it too. It’s telling that swiping has been jocularly incorporated into advertisements for various products, a nod to the notion that, online, the act of choosing consumer brands and sex partners has become interchangeable.
“It’s instant gratification,” says Jason, 26, a Brooklyn photographer, “and a validation of your own attractiveness by just, like, swiping your thumb on an app. You see some pretty girl and you swipe and it’s, like, oh, she thinks you’re attractive too, so it’s really addicting, and you just find yourself mindlessly doing it.” “Sex has become so easy,” says John, 26, a marketing executive in New York. “I can go on my phone right now and no doubt I can find someone I can have sex with this evening, probably before midnight.”
It is the very abundance of options provided by online dating which may be making men less inclined to treat any particular woman as a “priority,” according to David Buss, a professor of psychology at the University of Texas at Austin who specializes in the evolution of human sexuality. “Apps like Tinder and OkCupid give people the impression that there are thousands or millions of potential mates out there,” Buss says. “One dimension of this is the impact it has on men’s psychology. When there is a surplus of women, or a perceived surplus of women, the whole mating system tends to shift towards short-term dating. Marriages become unstable. Divorces increase. Men don’t have to commit, so they pursue a short-term mating strategy. Men are making that shift, and women are forced to go along with it in order to mate at all.”
Now hold on there a minute. “Short-term mating strategies” seem to work for plenty of women too; some don’t want to be in committed relationships, either, particularly those in their 20s who are focusing on their education and launching careers. Alex the Wall Streeter is overly optimistic when he assumes that every woman he sleeps with would “turn the tables” and date him seriously if she could. And yet, his assumption may be a sign of the more “sinister” thing he references, the big fish swimming underneath the ice: “For young women the problem in navigating sexuality and relationships is still gender inequality,” says Elizabeth Armstrong, a professor of sociology at the University of Michigan who specializes in sexuality and gender. “Young women complain that young men still have the power to decide when something is going to be serious and when something is not—they can go, ‘She’s girlfriend material, she’s hookup material.’ … There is still a pervasive double standard. We need to puzzle out why women have made more strides in the public arena than in the private arena.”
Continue reading the rest of the article at http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2015/08/tinder-hook-up-culture-end-of-dating
Let me know when the value for meaningful relationships return. Until then, I will remain happily single.
~ Author Mara Prose
Picture Courtesy of NaijaNewsPlus
have standards; step up or step out.” – Steve Maraboli
You ever meet someone, man or woman, romantic or platonic, real or fake, that makes you feel bad for having standards? I’m talking about those folks who take “humility” to a whole other level (i.e. one that shouldn’t ever be reached)?
Recently, I was talking to a male friend of mine who isn’t in the best—but also not the worst—situation financially. We were talking about the qualities we’d like for our significant others to possess and the usual characteristics came up. You know, stable employment, a kind and generous heart, someone who is funny, intelligent, consistent and faithful, etc. Then he went into self-deprecating mode:
“See, that woman right there [insert random acquaintance he knows] is my type of woman. But a man like me can’t get a chick like her. She won’t date a regular dude. She wants a dude who has it all together.”
Whenever my friend gets in this mode—which I still have yet to determine if jealousy or a self-esteem issue is the culprit—I cringe. It’s like a combination of complaining, not being confident enough in what he brings to the table and judging women based on their preferences equate to this annoyance of a concoction. He says things like, “She needs to get her a regular dude” or “That type of woman won’t mess with a blue collar guy. She’s probably all about the money.” Keyword: PROBABLY. In other words, he counts himself out of the race for her heart before the “Go!” shot is even fired.
Each and every time I ask him to elaborate on why he feels this way, it all goes back to how she looks, how she dresses and the life that she appears to live from the outside looking in.
I’m not going to sit here and pretend like we all don’t want that ride or die mate. But perhaps, if you are running into women who aren’t interested in dating you due to your financial status, maybe you should work on becoming a bit more stable in that department.
Granted, gold-diggers do exist, but every woman who does not desire to “struggle” with a man does not fit into that category. I’m not saying that blue collar men struggle. I’m smart enough to know that your intelligence, connections and work ethic—not the type of work that you do—is what truly leads to wealth and success. But it seems like a growing number of men, hell people, don’t seem to know the difference.
My friend is one of many men I’ve encountered who thinks a woman won’t date them because they’re not rich. In their minds, not being wealthy means their “broke,” which just isn’t the case. And while this may be true in some instances, sometimes a woman has already struggled with a man. Sometimes, a woman knows how her heart is set up and she will end up taking on said man’s emotional, physical and financial burdens instead of functioning cohesively as a unit in the relationship. And honestly, sometimes she doesn’t want to revisit the “land of hard times.” It’s usually no different than any other preference someone has regarding a potential mate.
Let’s revisit my friend for a second. The problem isn’t his paycheck, it’s his confidence. Granted, for the most part, folks do well by staying in their lanes, so to speak. He’s decided to date women he believes will date and accept him, “broke” and all—and acceptance is a big part of a healthy loving relationship. Requiring that which you are willing to give is also a key factor.
But then there are those who do not allow themselves to be defined by “lanes.” Usually, confidence is a big determinant of where you fit.
Women aren’t obligated to date a man who is struggling. If we prefer someone who is more financially stable, that does not mean that we are heartless, gold-digging and superficial. It simply means that maybe your paycheck isn’t the issue, but your character and confidence is. A woman isn’t always disinterested in you because of your pay grade. Sometimes she just isn’t interested. And instead of finding reasons to discount yourself or calling her greedy, fake and/or selfish, maybe you should remember that she doesn’t owe you an explanation.
Shantell E. Jamison is a digital editor for EBONY. She moderates various events centered on love, relationships, politics and wellness and has appeared on panels throughout the country. Her book, “Drive Yourself in the Right Direction” is available now. Keep up with Shantell via her website, Facebook, Twitter @Shantell_em and Instagram @Shantell_em.
Photo courtesy of http://www.popmatters.com
Not long ago, Gabrielle Reece, the world famous model, volleyball star and wife to pro surfer Laird Hamilton, sparked controversy with her new memoir “My Foot Is Too Big For The Glass Slipper”. In her memoir, she claims that ” to truly be feminine means being soft, receptive, and submissive.” It just so happens that around the same time, I was enjoying a day of watching old classic movies. One of my favorites is Gone with the Wind. When I heard about Gabrielle’s controversy, I immediately thought of the stark differences between Scarlett O’Hara and Melanie Wilkes.
The question is, do men prefer a Scarlett or a Melanie? Let’s use the Scarlett and Melanie characters from the movie as a basis for a comparison/contrast to the modern woman.
Scarlett O’Hara is one of the most popular characters in cinema and classic fiction. Even if you have not seen the movie, most are familiar with the characteristic traits of Scarlett. Shrewd and vain, but extremely tone deaf, Scarlett inherits the strong will of her Irish father Gerald O’Hara but deeply desires to please her well-bred, gentle mother Ellen Robillard,who stems from an aristocratic Savannah, Georgia family. In the face of hardship, the spoiled Scarlett shoulders the troubles of her family and friends, but the near starvation and backbreaking work for survival obliterate her innocence. In the beginning, she was a daydreamer, madly in love with the wrong man and working hard to manipulate a future with him. It was the harsh realities of the war that changed her and made her cold, calculating and money hungry. She became fiercely independent, despite her many marriages. She was unusual among Southern women, where society preferred women to act as dainty creatures who sought protection from their men. Scarlett pretends to be of that nature, but deep down resents the “prerequisite” of it, unlike most of her Southern belle peers, i.e. Melanie Hamilton.
Rhett Butler, a wealthy older bachelor and a societal pariah, inadvertently is privy to a private conversation where Scarlett expresses her love to Ashley during a barbecue at Twelve Oaks, the Wilkes’ estate. Rhett is intrigued by Scarlett’s willfulness and her fearless departure from propriety. Her stunning beauty and conniving nature appeal to the inner rebel in him and he decides to pursue Scarlett despite her impetuousness, childish spite, and her fixation on Ashley. He even aides Scarlett in her defiance of proper Victorian mourning customs when her husband, Charles Hamilton dies and readily encourages her spirited behavior in front of all of Atlanta high society. In a way, he is responsible for liberating Scarlett.
But the very things that initially attracted Rhett to Scarlett, are eventually what drove them apart. While attracted to her strength, independence, and determination, Rhett was never able to break the determination Scarlett had towards Ashley. Rhett felt he could appeal to her materialistic senses and win her over by spoiling her and giving her all her heart’s desires. It is Scarlett’s struggle as a “Southern Lady” that attracts him but ultimately causes Rhett despair. Her heartless nature was appealing until she stole his heart and remained out of touch with her true feelings for him because of his indulgence in her selfish nature. Scarlett is forced to challenge the standards because of the dire conditions to survive, but does this equate to a desirable partner in a relationship?
In essence, Scarlett O’Hara is the epitome of today’s success driven female who is determined to make her own way through life with or without a man.
Melanie is the polar opposite of Scarlett. She is sweet, demure, indulgent and self sacrificing. She places her husband’s needs ahead of her own, and willingly succumbs to the standards of their society at that time. Melanie is so submissive to her husband, that she even participates in his self perpetuated illusion of a world that allows him to avoid facing reality due to his cowardice. Despite being drawn to Scarlett, Ashley knew her fearless nature would ultimately reject his lack of confidence and cowardly nature, whereas Melanie wholeheartedly embraced and encouraged him to be true to himself. Melanie is still a pillar of strength, similar to Scarlett, but she goes about it in a faithful, loyal and quiet manner. Her determination matches Scarlett, where it differs is Melanie’s determination is towards helping others whereas Scarlett’s determination is strictly for self gain.
Melanie exhibits quiet leadership. The Melanie’s of the world are the homemakers. They take great pride in their families. They allow their husbands to lead and they don’t mind being the background to their foreground. Women like Melanie choose to focus on the better aspects of other’s personalities and remain a staunch advocate for the underdogs of society. Women like her believe that everyone deserves to be treated with respect and dignity despite their social status.
Ashley finds refuge in Melanie’s love. He can be vulnerable with her; something that Scarlett comes to despise him for later in the novel and would have never embraced. The men in the novel admire, respect and appreciate Melanie, including Rhett Butler. However, the novel depicts more men being drawn to Scarlett and even casting aside their betrothed to marry her. But do men truly desire a spirited woman like Scarlett, or do they prefer the calming, codependent nature of Melanie?
The question remains whether or not we have evolved past the Melanie’s in the world? Is this actually sustainable when our society demands two household incomes just to survive; forcing woman to constantly juggle careers, motherhood and being a wife?
Who would truly make a better wife, Scarlett or Melanie? Of course, the Scarlett in question would actually love her rightful husband and not be pining after someone else’s. For the sake of this blog post, let’s just ponder. Do men want a domineering woman, who knows what she wants and goes after it? Someone who would bring just as much to the table, if not more? Sadly, we have poor examples in our society of this dynamic in a relationship, so the odds ares stacked against these type of females in today’s ‘swipe left/right’ culture.
I believe there will always be a debate about whether or not a woman should be submissive to her man. Many women view submissiveness as a detriment to their independence and fear their submission will be abused by the wrong man. Yet, there is the other spectrum that believes wholeheartedly the man should be the head of the household and readily submit without question. In Gabrielle’s memoir, she credits the success of her marriage to submissiveness. I personally believe in balance. I believe that with the right man, a woman can submit while still maintaining her independence, strength and high achieving nature. Both of these characterizations in Gone with the Wind are examples of it simply being a matter of finding the right person that best suits your authentic self. In truth, no matter what type of woman you are, you will have to make a sacrifice as that is just part of life and being in a relationship.
But in this stark comparison of these female roles, I wonder if this is why so many women are choosing to remain single? Are the expectations of our men today unrealistic for how females have evolved in today’s society? I would love to hear what others think about this topic. Feel free to leave your comments to spark up a discussion on this topic and remember to keep it respectful!
~ Author Mara Prose
The ‘shoulds’ paralyze me
They lead to the what ifs, the maybes and the could haves
My target is never stagnant and does not allow me to move
I am unhinged and hindered
My doubts subdue me
My failures asphyxiate me
My gains seem miniscule
My mind prepares a catechism
It just can’t let me rest
What’s right? What’s wrong?
What’s my truth? Am I really strong?
My curiosity sacrifices me to injunction
I trial. I tribulate.
I wonder. I investigate.
What I desire is not always mastered
What I master is not always consummated
So I freeze and second guess
The shoulds paralyze me
I am a hostage to its psychological strangulation
I must bargain for my release
I have to be aware of my capabilities
I must believe in all that is me
Even if that means leaving life more of a mystery
The shoulds are a guide, a formula that doesn’t always add up
Convention can equate to confinement
Rejection can equate to judgment
But the world is not our jury
Yet, the shoulds still paralyze me
~ Author Mara Prose
Original Publication Date May 15, 2012
Hello Prosers! I wrote this many years ago and decided it would be a great topic of discussion for today’s reblog and per my usual habit, I have edited my copy and included extra material for your reading pleasure.
Many people have touched on this topic, so I doubt I have anything new to add but we will explore it nonetheless. Over the years, I have made it a practice to weed out toxic individuals from my life. I make this practice applicable to family members, friends and co-workers; no one is exempt. Life is challenging enough and it is so hard to maintain peace of mind that I do not see the purpose in tolerating intolerable people. I lack the tolerance and temperament to deal with these type of individuals on a regular basis. They serve no real value in my life, and although I know there is a lesson to be learned in every situation, I limit the lessons I have to learn from these type of people.
There are some toxic people that you have no choice but to interact with on a regular basis; does not mean you cannot set boundaries and keep your distance. Toxic people not only feed off of negativity, they disguise their toxicity with various manipulation tactics. They are exhausting people to deal with and I have never mastered the tolerance it takes to keep them around for very long. As with anything else, there are levels to the toxicity of the people we regularly encounter. I thought I would list some of them here as I know we all have come across someone like this at some point in time.
Let’s start with the all too familiar person that likes to throw regular shade, say snide remarks and belittle others. Their MO is to repeatedly take jabs at you because they feed off of your reaction and enjoy feeling superior to you when deep down they are the most insecure people walking. In the past, I was known to give as good as I got. In maturity, I simply laugh at them and refuse to play the fool. They hate and I do mean HATE, to be ignored so I happily ignore them. Why should I waste my energy on these pathetic individuals?
How about the restless souls where drama often follows them wherever they go? They always seem to be in strife with someone and of course, it is NEVER their fault. These people are the ones arguing with the grocery clerks, with their coworkers or arguing in the comment sections under Facebook posts. They are never at peace with anyone because they have no peace within. They are miserably unhappy and will make you absolutely miserable if you allow them to do so.
But the last one I want to discuss is the narcissist. You need to avoid these individuals at all costs. They are beyond toxic and have been known to ruin the lives of others. All anyone has to do is conduct a Google search on narcissistic personality disorder and a plethora of information can be found. Our society is full of narcissist but thankfully, there is enough information available for everyone to guard themselves against the toxicity of this kind of person.
Toxic equates to people who are emotionally draining, who are consistently negative or basically disrupt the peaceful balance in my life. Everyone handles toxic situations differently but for me, it is distance followed by elimination.
Until we explore this topic again, keep reading and reading and reading my blogs over and over and over again. LOL! I don’t mind, really!! 🙂
Author Mara Prose
Joyce Meyer once said she is a good wife, but not a normal wife. She is a good mother, but not a normal mother. That message really spoke to me, because that describes me. For those not familiar with me or my work, let me explain the purpose of the Aha! Moments I have decided to share.
After publishing The Journey to Mara Prose: A Poetic Testimonial, I realized how broken I was and how unrecognizable I had become. From the moment that the completed book was delivered to me, I decided that I would rebuild, renew, and come back better and stronger than ever before. I entered therapy, I started to study and I immersed myself in the word of God. I also did something I had never done before, I shut out all distractions and the noise from all of those who loved to tell me who I should be and what I should be doing. That was three years ago, and I am now a better, stronger, and much-renewed version of Mara. It has not been an easy transition; it has been painful, confusing, and frustrating, but oh so rewarding! Codependency was my truth, but it is no longer my gospel.
I am not where I want to be, but thank God I am not where I used to be. Now, my day incorporates waking up at 4am and watching sermons on TBN until 6am. Beginning at 6am, I listen to my favorite life coaches, therapists and motivational speakers on YouTube until around 8ish. I not only listen to my sermons and self-therapy at these times, but I also listen to them at various times throughout the day. This is a lifestyle change and it is something I am committed to until my last breath on this earth.
For years, I spent way too much time spinning my wheels trying to be ‘Normal’. I would look at other mothers, and worry they would think I am not a good mother if I did not try to perform as the world said a mother should perform. I would read books, listen to other women, and then I would try to mimic what equated to a ‘good mother’ depicted in magazines, books, movies, and television. Since it was not organic to my authentic self, I was never able to sustain them. It took many years for me to realize, I had to do things that worked for me and my children. I have never been a Suzy Homemaker. I have never been the mother to cook elaborate meals, decorate for every holiday, or attend every PTA event. But I love my children with a fierceness, and I show up for them in a way that is authentic to us as a family. I listen to their feelings, I provide sound guidance and I work on myself several hours out of each day so that I am able to support them the way they need to be supported. They are my purpose, so I do everything I know to do ON PURPOSE, to remain true to that purpose.
Even in my writing, I would look at other authors/writers and feel like I was sorely lacking and feared I would never live up to the accomplishments they had achieved. Again, I felt like I was not a ‘Normal’ writer. I have been guilty of setting unrealistic deadlines on myself in an effort to push myself in my writing. I constantly edit and re-edit to achieve the perfect prose for my readers. If I found a typo after publication, I would beat myself up about it for weeks. Well, once again, I had to learn to be the writer I was called to be in the moment I am supposed to be it. This means while I remain disciplined, I can only write when the ideas flow within me. If I make a mistake, oh well, I am human. If you judge my writing on a typo and never read my material again, then you were never meant to be reading my work in the first place. None of my writing is geared towards the judgmental, so it would be pointless for that type of individual to even try to follow my writing.
Normal is a simpleminded word in my opinion and should never be applied to much of anything in life. You know what is ‘Normal’? Normal is what works best for you, your family, and where you are in life. Normal does not need to translate to anyone else but you. When I was married, I was a very unconventional wife but you know what, it worked for us at that time. I may not be a Beaver Cleaver mother, but I am a damn good mother. Yes, there were certainly times I was a bad wife, bad mother, bad friend, bad daughter but those bad moments are just that – moments in time. If I am judged on a moment in my life, then that person is foolish because that moment in my life only defines where I was at that particular moment in time; a time affected by the challenges of the day. It does not define me as a whole. Small-minded people who are not privy to the intricacies of my life can never be expected to see the big picture or understand me as a whole. Unless you live inside my house, head, and heart, you will never have a full understanding of who I am and where I am coming from, so never try to paint a picture of me with your assumptions.
So Today’s Aha! Moment: Stop trying to be normal, and just be who you are. To hell with everyone else and what they may think, assume or even falsely define you as. Be the normal that is normal to YOU!
Until my next Aha!
Living Beyond Your Feelings by Joyce Meyer
I hope this once again finds you safe, well, and sheltered in place. This week, I am keeping it very simple with some brief updates.
I am very proud to announce that my social media presence is under new management, courtesy of my beautiful daughter, Niyah. She will be flexing her marketing skills on her momma’s platforms in preparation for her future career aspirations, while her brother will continue to act as a research analyst for all of my current books in development. #keepingitinthefamily
I also have finally been given an exact date of when my book links will go live for The Davenports: Crescendo from both Amazon and Barnes & Noble. However, I will not be disclosing the date since the world continues to remain uncertain due to covid-19 and I do not want to be disappointed, nor disappoint my readers. But rest assured, it is not too much longer before you will be able to continue with the series!!
I am officially contracted to write for two new movie projects, and those details will be forthcoming as I am allowed to release them. Regrettably, I am no longer affiliated with the Warlock movie as the project has gone in a new direction, with a new name, director, etc. Mara Prose will, however, continue to show support for the new direction of that project and has nothing but love and well wishes for the entire team at Texas Ego Films.
Last but not least, please check out the rebroadcasts of a couple of interviews I conducted.
Today at 1 pm EST, listen to my very first Mara Prose interview with “On The Grind with Rhonda Supreme” on FreeAgentRadio. Download the #FreeAgentRadio App or listen online at www.freeagentradio.com & www.power102jamz.com.
Also, check out my interview with Matt Kerr on The Working Experience via ITunes, Spotify, and Anchor!
Spotify Link: CLICK HERE
Until next time,
Happy Mara Prose Monday, Prosers! This weekend was absolutely stellar. My first born graduated Cum Laude from high school. It was a perfect event, and I did not even allow the tiny mishaps or an uncomfortable moment to overshadow her day. I am beyond proud!
This weekend, I re-watched one of my favorite movies, Doubt, starring Meryl Streep and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman. In one scene, Father Flynn (played by Hoffman) delivers a riveting sermon about the dangers of gossip that I have copied for you here:
A woman was gossiping with a friend about a man she hardly knew— I know none of you have ever done this—that night she had a dream. A great hand appeared over her and pointed down at her. She was immediately seized with an overwhelming sense of guilt. The next day she went to confession.
She got the old parish priest, Father O’Rourke, and she told him the whole thing. “Is gossiping a sin?” she asked the old man. “Was that the hand of God Almighty pointing a finger at me? Should I be asking your absolution? Father, tell me, have I done something wrong?”
“Yes!” Father O’Rourke answered her. “Yes, you ignorant, badly brought-up female! You have borne false witness against your neighbor, you have played fast and loose with his reputation, and you should be heartily ashamed!”
So the woman said she was sorry and asked for forgiveness. “Not so fast!” says O’Rourke. “I want you to go home, take a pillow up on your roof, cut it open with a knife, and return here to me!”
So the woman went home, took a pillow off her bed, a knife from the drawer, went up the fire escape to the roof, and stabbed the pillow. Then she went back to the old parish priest as instructed. “Did you gut the pillow with the knife?” he says.”Yes, Father.” “And what was the result?” “Feathers,” she said. A world of feathers.
“Feathers?” he repeated. “Feathers everywhere, Father!”
“Now I want you to go back and gather up every last feather that flew out on the wind!”
“Well,” she said, “it can’t be done. I don’t know where they went. The wind took them all over.”
”And that,” said Father O’Rourke,“is gossip!”
The image of those feathers floating in the wind made me think, that is exactly what I am doing when I ask God to guide me at the crossroads in my life. See, at every major intersection of my life, there have been crossroads – should I go left, right, backwards or simply keep going straight. If you are like me, the many choices we have in life can sometimes become overwhelming and leave you wondering, where does God want me to be?
In the past, I believe I always made the wrong decisions when I tried to solve things myself. When I listened to my feelings and then reacted, or when I listened to someone else instead of giving it to God. We all want to be the masters of our own lives. We want to feel empowered and feel confident in our decision making, but without God, you will never experience real victory.
The feathers in the air resonated so well with me because I feel that is how I have come to handle major decisions in my life. I simply take the feather of an idea, a want/desire or a life altering decision, and I toss them to the wind, step back and let God decide where it lands. That feather floats around in the universe until God returns it to me with His answer of direction. Sometimes that feather floats around and around and around for quite sometime before it eventually lands. Then there are other times, where it immediately floats to its intended destination. The key to understanding these decisions is realizing and accepting I am not the author, God is the author.
As an author myself, you have no control over the direction of the material I deliver to you. When you are reading my work, I am constantly guiding your feelings about a character, shaping your opinions about the situations my characters face and leading you to the book’s conclusion via my own self imposed narrative, not yours. In essence, the sole purpose of my writing is to guide my readers to the exact place I want them to be by the time the book ends. And, as long as you keep reading, you will arrive at the desired destination that I have set before you. By the time you purchase the book, it is already written and there is nothing you can say or do to change the words that have been published.
So much like my skills as an author, that is how God is directing your steps throughout life. When that feather floats in the universe for a longer period of time than we want or expect, we always make the foolish decision to try and guess where God intends for that feather to land. At times, we may even take control and try to guide that feather to where we feel God wants it to be. Again, this is folly. Our life story is already written.
I have learned that when I am anxious about a decision, that is simply fear because I want something so bad and I am afraid I will never have it. Again, that is me trying to control my own narrative. I have learned to trust that God knows what is best for me and what He has planned for my life is so much better and greater than any life I try to construct on my own. God does not operate in anxiety, that is our unreliable feelings controlling the narrative and not trusting God. We have to be careful that we do not allow the baggage of life to weigh us down and keep us from experiencing a fulfilling life. Hurts, pain, and disappointments can close us off, shut us down and keep us in a place of stagnation.
I encourage my Prosers today to turn down the volume of those constant thoughts that are on replay in our heads and start to do more of a mental clean-up. Clear out those dust webs of doubt, start to sanitize the unhealthy thoughts and replace them with new, fresh and positive mental chatter that inspire and encourage us to be a better version of who we have been. Basically, be very mindful of what you allow yourself to think, feel and believe. We are not the author, but we can contribute to the narrative by supporting the story God wove for us and actively participating in the developing chapters stretching out before us that He has already written.
Until next time,
I write this with a heavy heart, but also with a spirit of courage, determination and purpose. The horror of our world is too much to bear at times. The magnitude of the George Floyd movement that has gone global represents my truth and what I live with everyday – fear that my son will lose his life to senseless violence. Since the day he was born, I knew my son would have a very different experience in the world. I knew that life would be rather unfair to him. I knew that I had to teach him different principles than I taught my daughter. I knew that everyday I would live in fear that he would be misunderstood. So if you are looking for this to be a positive, politically correct blog post, I suggest you close the page now. If anyone remembers my Friday Frankness posts, then you know full well what to expect if you choose to continue to read.
Riots and Looting
I do not condone the violent riots nor the looting that we see on the news. However, I understand where it comes from and why it is taking place. When we tried to peacefully kneel, there was issue with that and harsh repercussions to our livelihoods. There is no such thing as peacefully demonstrating for us. Martin Luther King’s legacy was all about peacefully working towards change, and he too, senselessly lost his life for it. When we march or when our activists visit the White House, it falls on deaf ears. All of you worried about only the aspect of businesses being burned down or saying that black neighborhoods are being destroyed are looking only at the surface level, and the superficiality of what is taking place and frankly, you are a fool. You know full well money talks the loudest in these situations.
Do you not realize that most of these people who are rioting and looting have nothing to lose to begin with? Ask yourself why they have nothing to lose and don’t sugarcoat it either. Stop saying that black people have the same opportunities as white people. Stop saying that they should not destroy their own neighborhoods when most of these neighborhoods have been subjected to gentrification anyway. The aggressiveness displayed in these riots is triggered by years and years and years of the mistreatment of the black man. How many black men have to die before we start to evoke change? How many times do we have to be shocked by the brutality that our black men face everyday that all too often costs them their lives? The riots and looting are a reaction based on the fact that it is the ONLY time we get any form of justice – and that justice is not even really the justice that should take place. We had to riot with Rodney King to get a small measure of justice, but you know what happened, after the initial outrage died down, things returned to just as they have been for centuries.
Now this is to my black brothers and sisters, and again, if you are sensitive or easily offended, get off of my blog. STOP crying out, acting a fool, posting on social media and basically just running your mouth and never putting any action behind it. Stop forgetting and quickly going back to being complacent. I am so very sick of you loud mouths who talk the talk but never walk the walk. I would rather you simply shut the hell up and just go continue to live in your bubble since we cannot expect much else from you except a freaking Facebook post or maybe a day of you so called participating in a pointless blackout. Remember that YOU are the problem just as much as these bigots and racists we face everyday. Remember that they are all able to divide us so easily because WE allow them to divide to us. Remember that it should not just be this week, this month or even the next few months that you show outrage, it should be a lifestyle change. You should constantly and I do mean CONSTANTLY be advocating for all our black brothers and sisters.
I am so very tired of this cycle. I am so tired of fearing for my son. I am so tired of watching many of my black brothers and sisters whine and complain without action. I am just tired!!! I say it proudly and without fear of any repercussions of this posts – should something happen to my son ever, best believe it will not be the Mara Prose you have come to know and love and admire – it will be an enraged black mother and whatever happens from that rage, so be it. It would have been irresponsible of me not to use my platform to speak out against this and you will continue to see the efforts I put towards change. I am teaching my son how to stand for something by standing for something. I am teaching the world to lead by example and action, and not just hide behind a freaking computer screen being a keyboard coward.
United we stand, divided we fall,
Happy Mara Prose Monday! I pray this finds you safe, well, and comfortably sheltered in place. I imagine these unusual times have many concerned, frightened, and wondering what is to come. But be at peace, we have survived much worse and we will come out of this triumphant as well; but with a new normal way of living! I for one, have enjoyed the social distancing mandates. I enjoy not having strangers stand almost on top of me in lines. I like the quiet and the solitude that this period of time is affording me. Without the added distractions, my mind is clear to focus on doing more of what I love to do…write & create!
And while solitude is great, I highly advise using this time to really connect with your loved ones. I am really enjoying my happy hour zoom chats with family and friends. It has allowed us to stay connected more often and see each other frequently, even if it is virtually. The first two weeks from working at home was an adjustment, but it is now a welcome break from the constant interruptions at the office. I find myself at peace and able to freely concentrate on challenging tasks. If I do not want to be disturbed, then I can simply go on do not disturb and zone out to my work. It is a wonderful change!! I am also able to stick to a better diet and regular workout routine. For me , this quarantine has been the welcomed sabbatical that I needed but my heart, prayers and love go out to all who have been tragically affected by this virus and the necessary safety precautions that have been put in place for the greater good.
Please take some time to watch Pastor Steven Furtick’s sermon “Looking Forward to Normal”. It will give you a new perspective about our current state of affairs, and hopefully encourage everyone to really focus on what is truly important.
Now, on to the fun stuff! Let’s catch up on all things Mara Prose 🙂 As usual, I have been very busy growing, learning and developing new content. Let’s begin…
I am proud to announce that I am a new member of the writer’s room for the upcoming television show ‘Strange Places’. I want to give a warm shout out of thanks and appreciation to my mentor/director/producer Andy Rodriguez – McCradic. I am so grateful that he saw so much potential in my writing and invited me without reservation to work alongside so many very talented writers. I have never written a teleplay, but I am learning a lot very quickly and enjoying the exhilarating feeling of bringing to life what I feel is going to be an exceptionally entertaining television series.
MARA PROSE VIRTUAL BOOK CLUB
If you are not a member of my book club on Facebook, I hope you will reconsider your status and join us in our new format. I am always playing around with different ideas to keep the book club new, fresh and interesting. We were a virtual group long before Covind-19 and the new rise in popularity of Zoom calls. The new format is to vote every three months on a new genre, and choose any book from the winning genre to read. Yes, each reader chooses a book that most appeals to them! From that point, instead of having only 30 days to read the book, our members will now have 90 days to complete their selection. Time gets away from us all, and it is not always feasible to complete a book within 30 days for most, so I decided to allow more time to thoroughly enjoy each selection in the hopes that people will be able to more actively engage in the group. After the 90 days, we will have a scheduled Zoom chat and whoever wants to share and discuss their chosen book, they are welcome to do so. If not, others can simply listen into the call. We welcome everyone! Our current winning genre is History which includes Historical Fiction, and our upcoming Zoom chat will be held on my birthday, Sunday May 17th, 2020. The time is TBD.
THE DAVENPORTS: CRESCENDO (BOOK 2)
For all you Davenport fans, book 2 in the series will go on sale at Barnes and Noble and Amazon on my birthday, Sunday, May 17th, 2020! Check out the newly created book trailer and if you have not done so, please visit my blog http://www.maraprose.blog and click on ‘The Davenport Series’ to read the free prologues for Book 1 and Book 2.
Will Alessandra and Steven continue their love affair? How is Makhail fairing after the Norway explosion? Who was really the master mind behind the explosion that shifted the power of control in Davenport Industries? You will have to purchase the upcoming book to find out more!
THE MARA PROSE PODCAST – PROSEY’S CORNER IS NOW ON SPOTIFY!
Despite our current season 3 being temporarily on pause, I am so very proud to announce that we have made it to Spotify for your listening pleasure. Please be sure to follow us on Spotify and listen to our 1st episode of Season 3. We will be returning on, you guessed it, Sunday, May 17th 2020. (Catching onto the date theme yet? LOL)
I am also in the process of developing new plans for my currently stagnant writing group, the Author Mara Prose Writing Group, on Facebook. Although my plate is overflowing, I still continue to make a lot of progress on my upcoming romantic comedy, The Queen of Marriage. Unfortunately, it does not have a release date as of yet, but I hope to have it on the market before the end of 2020. We at Texas Ego Films, also have some exciting news about our upcoming movie, Warlock, that I cannot announce just yet but as soon as I can, my Prosers will be the first to know!!
As always, I cannot thank my Prosers enough. When I actually commit all this to paper, I am amazed at how far I have come and I owe it all to the many, many individuals who continue to support me, believe in me and all things Mara Prose. I thank God for this blessed gift that I am able to share with the world.
Until next time,
I initially blogged this in 2017. I am currently taking time to self reflect on everything I have ever written and following it up in 2020. It is nice to see how far you have come because it helps you navigate where you want to go. A lot of people self reflect, but they reflect at the surface. Many people claim to reflect, but they do not take the necessary actions to make the needed changes to progress in their life. I sympathize with them because it is not easy admitting to all your flaws, accepting when you are wrong and acknowledging that you have so many areas that need improvement in your life.
Facing the Uniqueness of Me
There came a point in my life where a light bulb went off inside my head and I suddenly began to see myself for who I truly am and not who I have pretended to be. No one really wants to admit to themselves that they haven’t always been the most likeable person, least of all a person like me who is very set in her ways. Yet, it was time for me to grow; I mean really grow and evolve so much more than I ever have in the past.
I really like this Mara that everyone is witnessing these days. I fall in love with her more and more everyday. I am so protective of this version of myself , that any type of compromise is viewed as a detriment and threat.
Why do I like her so much? Because she is calmer, more secure, more focused and more selfless. She doesn’t mind sharing her big heart with others. She stopped being a braggart and pompous ass and actually just started enjoying her life more quietly. She listens more than she speaks and she empathizes more than she judges.
She has no qualms about admitting her faults and working to correct them. She finally realizes that she creates her own happiness; although it is still a struggle to keep this at play. This Mara knows when to take a step back, analyze, reassess and then proceed with caution (the former Mara rushed into everything). She is working on being more of a champion for herself as opposed to her own worst critic.
There is so much more but I think you get the just of it. I am just an all around better person. I see so much beauty in myself and in my life. When I initially wrote this, I felt like I was still a butterfly emerging from its cocoon. Well, I have emerged and I am beautiful butterfly who has found her wings and happily soaring to new heights. The point is I accept the Uniqueness of Me.
Until next time,
Happy Mara Prose Monday!! I took the time to revamp one of my older blogger posts as it still remains so relevant in this day and age.
A family member once told me that I’m going to die alone, with no one to miss me but my children; and maybe not even them. I can laugh at this absurd statement now; especially since this person is on their third marriage. I think I’d rather be alone as opposed to leaving a trail of failed marriages and multiple baby mommas as my legacy.
At some point in our lives, it is beneficial to be alone. There are simply periods of growth that need to take place that require solitude. Our world is overly opinionated and judgmental, and it’s easy to feel as if you need to adhere to the fantasy that society tries to sell us on the necessity of relationships and marriage.
I’ve always needed more space and time than the usual person. I like to go my own way and forge my own path. It is during these times that I’m afforded the true luxury of learning, growing and self-reflecting. I accepted long ago that I’m not cut from the same cloth as most but there were many years where I felt I should assimilate with the masses and live the so-called American dream. I find convention stifling and I do not believe in fairy tales (but I do enjoy watching them, LOL). However, in my solitude, I have been able to accomplish sooooooo much; and the best is yet to come.
Solitude can bring a sense of peace and I can testify to that. I have come into my own and I am able to stand firm in my principles. You feel free and uninhibited. You don’t have anyone to explain yourself to, you can just be whoever you are meant to be. It’s a time where you can solely focus on self improvement. There’s no pressure or compromises to be made, you can live life on your own terms.
I find it amusing when people try to shame those who really enjoy being single. I have even had some men try to guilt trip me into dating them, which I must say is bizarre. And it is sad when I have encountered women who do not respect the decision to be single and try to push you into the dating scene.
Self love, care and acceptance deserve more emphasis in our lives. Think about that the next time you have people like the ones I have encountered who try and make you feel as if there is something wrong with you for valuing your own identity and being strong enough in self to determine and follow the path that is truly best for you.
Until next time,
Author Mara Prose
I had an amazing show planned this past Saturday with David Watts and my team members from Onstage Plus, LLC. However, there were embarrassing technical difficulties that forced me to end the show abruptly. This, combined with several other issues Nicky and I have been experiencing with Blog Talk Radio, led me to make the decision to convert Prosey’s Corner into a podcast; a decision that I feel was long overdue.
Prosey’s Corner is now hosted by Squadcast, and will be distributed by Buzzsprout, https://maraprose.buzzsprout.com. Each show will run for 30 minutes and will be available on Spotify, Apple iTunes, Google and iHeartRadio. You will also be able to listen to the episodes via my website, www.maraprose.blog. David and Onstage’s show will air Monday, March 23rd, and I am currently in the process of lining up some great shows with some amazingly talented individuals that I know everyone is going to enjoy.
In regards to Book 2 of The Davenports series, I have decided it will be released on my birthday, May 17th, 2020; just as I re-released Book 1: A Battle of Wills last year on my birthday! My editor and I both came up with the awesome idea of having an annual tradition of releasing a new Davenport installment each year on my birthday. I realize now that The Davenports will go well beyond a trilogy, so let the tradition begin!
Mara Prose Mondays are also returning to their original roots. I recently completed the bible plan, Dangerous Prayers. The 7-day bible plan from Life Church Pastor Craig Groeschel’s book, Dangerous Prayers, dares you to pray dangerously, because following Jesus was never meant to be safe. It was this bible plan that lead me to acknowledge that God has blessed me with everything I have been praying for over the past three years. It was time to not ask for anything more, and ask Him what could I do for the kingdom of God. I prayed for God to use me, even if that entailed taking some things away from me. It is a scary prayer but it also felt good to be able to sincerely be open to whatever God calls me to do next.
It came to me clear as day that my blog needs to return to it’s transparent nature; full of testimonies that I started sharing with my followers 8 years ago. It is time to take the focus off of self promotion only, and show the very human side of Mara Prose again. I have been very quiet over the past couple of years and avoided really engaging with my Prosers like I did in the beginning. In a world so paralyzed with fear of the offense, I want to lead by example, stand for something and encourage a return to integrity, strong values and morals.
Things are changing so rapidly for the Mara Prose brand, and I hope my Prosers are enjoying the ride as much as I am. If you believe in me and my work, please share my blog, share the podcasts, buy my books, and leave reviews – these simple actions are invaluable for where I am taking Mara Prose.
Until next time!
~ Mara Prose
Happy Mara Prose Monday! I have some exciting developments to announce. First and foremost, book one of the Davenports series: A Battle of Wills will be available for purchase on Barnes & Noble within the next 72 hours. In honor of this momentous occasion, I developed a new book trailer; check it out below.
Nicky and I are also excited about welcoming my Onstage Plus family to our show this Saturday, 11am to 12p CST and I have also debuted a brand new logo for the show.
Our first special guest is none other than the partner, creator and visionary David Watts, who is at the helm of this magnificent venture. He will be discussing how Onstage Plus came to be and explain his vision for the expansion of his digital network. OnStage Plus also hosts a wide range of talent, and David will be taking the time to personally introduce each member of his company on our Saturday show, and we will learn the plethora of talent that is available at this promising venture.
We are anticipating a highly successful 2020 filled with live concerts, masterclasses, a home shopping network, and a subscription movie/tv streaming service!! Onstage Plus will also cover several high profile events as media press and will be sharing those events via our subscription service. I’m so proud to be a producer and content creator for this fabulous network!!!
David Watts was born and raised in Buffalo, New York. His mother worked to put herself through school and became a registered nurse with supplemental assistance. It was her drive and determination that fostered David’s ‘anything is possible‘ outlook on life. It is because of his mother’s strength that he highly regards and respects the strength of black women.
David moved to California when he was 12 years old, and entered into the entertainment industry at the ripe age of 19. He began his career as a production assistant, and worked his way up to the marketing and branding department of an independent film company in Oakland, California. From there he went on to receive his bachelors degree in marketing with a minor in psychology. He is currently working on his PhD in Naturopathic Medicine.
David has spent many years working with A-list celebrities and prides himself on being able to quickly identify up and coming entertainers. He has always worked hard to inspire others to work to achieve their dreams at all costs and loves to mentor various artists in their craft. He was once told by the motivational speaker Les Brown, that whenever he needed a dose of positivity, he would view David’s inspirational videos to help him refocus. David has also worked with several top athletes and sport executives from all across the globe.
These days, David dedicates all his time to ONSTAGE PLUS, a global education and entertainment platform, based in Oakland, California. When he is not making moves in the entertainment industry, he spends quality time with his beautiful wife of 30 years and his five children – two daughters and three sons. David was told by his great grandmother to: ‘Leave this world a little better than you found it.’ And that is the mission statement that he applies to his daily life!
Please make plans to tune into Prosey’s Corner this Saturday, February 15th by calling our guest line 914-219-0898 or visiting https://maraprose.buzzsprout.com
Until next time,
In fond memory of Kobe and Gianna Bryant, John, Keri and Alyssa Altobelli, Christina Mauser, Sarah and Payton Chester, Ara Zobayan. May they Rest in Heaven and may their legacies live into infinity.
By Anne Bronte
Farewell to Thee! But not farewell
To all my fondest thoughts of Thee;
Within my heart they still shall dwell
And they shall cheer and comfort me.
Life seems more sweet that Thou didst live
And men more true Thou wert one;
Nothing is lost that Thou didst give,
Nothing destroyed that Thou hast done.
Happy Mara Prose Monday!!! I am so excited to announce my first venture into the world of romantic comedies. The book is still in very early, first draft stages but the ideas are flowing and coming together very nicely. Please enjoy the synopsis below and be sure to check out my other work on Amazon: The Davenports: A Battle of Wills, The Journey to Mara Prose: A Poetic Testimonial and soon to be released in the coming weeks, The Davenports: crescendo
She loves the institution of marriage, but it just doesn’t love her. Will the 5th time be the charm?
Giselle Branca said yes! Well, she had said it four times before but who was counting…only her family, friends, co-workers and all the Facebook friends she had never met. But never mind all that, he was the one, well the fifth; whatever; he was the last!! So what she had some bad luck in love, who doesn’t? For some reason, being a long term wife kept alluding her; circumstances just kept getting in the way. This time would work though, she could feel it. Her life depended on it.
Axel Rasmus was head over heels for Giselle but his family and friends were not as overjoyed. A four time divorcee with no kids and a demanding career did not equate to wife material in their eyes. He wanted to be the man of her dreams, the one that finally saves her from herself but Giselle was simple exasperating and her own worst enemy. He knew all about her past and it didn’t matter, he just needed her to let it all go and embrace their future. Could this beautiful, witty, albeit scatterbrained, accident prone woman handle the future he had planned for them? Only time would tell.
Follow Giselle as she navigates the world of love, online dating, kismet and the revolving door of husbands that just won’t stick. Author Mara Prose breaks with her usual brand of writing to venture into the world of romantic comedies and brings you a delightfully loveable character in Giselle Branca; a woman with a zest for life, an abiding hope in love and an infallible commitment to becoming a Mrs.
Happy Mara Prose Monday! I am excited to announce that Nicky and I will be returning for the 3rd season of Prosey’s Corner! Our show will air the third Saturday of every month from 10am to 11am CST on the Mara Prose network, http://www.blogtalkradio.com/maraprosenetwork.
We are excited to welcome our very first guests, the cast of upcoming television series Scared Stiff – please see the intro to the show and the cast bios below! The show will air Saturday, January 18th, 2020 10am to 11am CST. We hope you will tune in and join us for this amazing show! We are going to have a blast interviewing these talented individuals!! ~ Mara Prose
Happy Mara Prose Monday! I am very proud to share the re-cut trailer for our upcoming horror film, Warlock! There so many exciting developments that are taking place surrounding this movie that I cannot announce just yet, but please continue to follow us on this exciting journey.
Currently, we are seeking potential investors, so if you have any interest, please reach out to me at my email address: email@example.com
In the summer of 2018, a seed was sown and I am now beginning to reap the benefits of that seed. An independent creator and producer named Johnny B stumbled across my writing and reached out to me to help him create his vision for a movie he had in mind titled Warlock. At the time, I was furiously working to revamp the Davenports, promoting Prosey’s Corner for sponsorship and heading into a new career opportunity. I honestly did not think I had the bandwidth to provide anything of value since my plate was full, I had little interest in horror films and no confidence in my ability to provide anything of value. Thankfully, Johnny saw otherwise and continued to encourage me to work with him.
A year later, we now have a completed script and an official short film that is under consideration by Paramount and as an exhibit for the SXSW festival. Won’t HE do it! I want to send a huge thank you to Johnny B and Timothy Russell for including me in their vision, believing in my writing and opening doors for me that align with my ultimate writing goal of becoming a well sought after screenwriter! I hope my Prosers will enjoy the movie trailer and go out and support the film when it is released.
In addition to the wonderful news of the upcoming release of Warlock, I am also releasing the official prologue for book two of The Davenports: crescendo. I still fully intend to release the book in 2020 and I am aiming for a January date. I am still hard at work editing and revamping the story so that it exceeds my Prosers expectations. I so appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding in the delay of the book. It has to be right and it has to represent the Mara Prose brand well and when I feel that it does, it will be released to everyone. Enjoy the snippet below and stay tuned for the official release date when we find out how Alessandra is fairing with the company now that her father has been pushed out. Will Steven reunite with Priscilla? And what does Blake Kane really have up his sleeve in regards to his partnership with Makhail Davenport?
The court room was silent and the air was ripe with tension. Alessandra Davenport could feel the beads of sweat running down her back beneath her black Chanel blazer and Clic C’Est Noue Hermes blouse. Her matching gold plated Chanel belt felt extremely constricting on her abdomen and she longed to remove it and toss it out the nearest window. If she was honest, her entire ensemble was asphyxiating. This was an all-new nightmare for her; she had lived through too many to count at this point. Her role as President at Davenport Industries had been anything but ideal. It was just shy of her dream of chairmanship; the position that would give her enough power to finally avenge her brother Cale Davenport and his untimely death. But heading up Davenport Industries had become an albatross and detriment to her existence and so far had only resulted in more pain and disappointment for her.
Was this what her grandfather, brother and dare she think it…father were trying to protect her from all along? Lately, her confidence in her abilities were sorely lacking. Once the Department of Justice decided that Davenport Industries was largely responsible for the Norway explosion and placed the company under criminal investigation, Alessandra found herself under fire at every turn. The company’s every move was now scrutinized, the board distrusted her and even her grandfather had tucked tail and left her to fend for herself while he focused on taking the company in a new direction without her. And to make matters worse, she was no closer to solving the mysterious death of her beloved brother.
Over the past three years, Alessandra spent every day continually fighting for the rightful control of Davenport Industries. Her grandfather’s sudden resurgence in the industry had been unforeseen and never did she think he would become her adversary. Of course, he was nothing like her father Makhail Davenport and truthfully, she enjoyed a good deal of free reign within the company. But Maki Davenport had made it very clear that he had no intention of retiring the company to her any time soon, especially with the current state of affairs. This trial, if Davenport Industries were found solely at fault, could cost the company billions and this would threaten their position in the industry for many years to come. It would leave them vulnerable to takeovers and they could even lose their current multi-million dollar projects to their competitors.
After her father was removed from the line of succession, Maki surprisingly rekindled a passion for Davenport Industries. He had not realized how much he wanted his son Makhail pushed aside and how much of a dark cloud that relationship had been over DI. He was free once again to run the company as he saw fit, and he was enjoying his second chance at controlling the very empire he worked tirelessly to build. At first, Alessandra did not take Maki’s revelation seriously but as time progressed, and she started to be excluded from major decisions, an inner fury started to build within her.
She felt betrayed, slighted and ashamed of herself for the thoughts she was beginning to have towards Maki. No one could have predicted this sudden change of events, least of all her and she was at a loss at how to rectify it. It had been easy to sabotage Makhail, but her grandfather was a different story. She loved the man fiercely and she could not find it in her to betray him. Yet, he was blocking her deepest desire and Alessandra was finding it harder and harder to hold back her sinister nature.
Alessandra had expected a period of mentoring from him and even anticipated that it would take a few years for the knowledge transfer from her grandfather to be complete. Unfortunately, she did not plan for Maki’s reluctance to make her CEO of Davenport Industries. She had no choice but to accept his offer of President and his new plans to remain Chairman until his last breath. Death…Alessandra pushed the thought away. It was an unspeakable thought but it continued to reverberate through her.
Her presidency within the company would have been an acceptable start for her at DI but Alessandra’s past dealings were dependent on her repaying debts that could only be repaid inconspicuously as CEO of Davenport Industries. Maki could never gain knowledge of her secret agreements; those deals held promises she had to figure out how to fulfill. Out of sheer desperation, she had already taken several risky measures over the last three years and it was those very underhanded dealings that landed her in her current situation – facing a grand jury in a court room full of powerful enemies that wanted nothing more than to see the downfall of a Davenport.
Alessandra searched the room for a friendly face, willing herself to remain unreadable in a sea full of sharks. They were out for blood, her blood, and she would be damned if she let them beat her. Her attorneys were in a huddle furiously arguing amongst themselves. She almost laughed at the absurdity of them arguing about her future. Could they save her? Well that remained to be seen but the outlook was grime. There was a mountain of circumstantial evidence against her but they were missing the coup de gras – actual proof that she was responsible for the arson that caused the Norway oil rig explosion.
When her father was blamed by their board of directors for the catastrophe, Alessandra foolishly believed her troubles were behind her. She had underestimated her father’s vengeance and his partnership with Blake Kane had proven detrimental to her and Davenport Industries. She could not prove it but she knew beyond a shadow of a doubt her father was behind the anonymous reports to the DOJ. No one had connections like her father and she knew she had been betrayed by someone within Davenport Industries but she had yet to discover the actual mole. Luckily, the Colt family had as much to lose as she did and remained firmly in her corner. If they turned on her, Alessandra could kiss her freedom goodbye. But she wouldn’t allow that to happen. The Colts would continue to be handsomely taken care of well beyond their initial undocumented agreements.
A wave of nausea suddenly hit her with that last thought and Alessandra motioned to her attorneys. “I need to excuse myself for a minute, I am not feeling quite well” Alessandra explained. “Is there anything I can get you Miss Davenport?” Daniel Goldblatt, DI’s chief counsel asked immediately with a concerned look on his face. “No, no, I just need a minute to gather myself. I only had coffee this morning and should have stopped for a bite to eat. I will be fine, thank you” Alessandra stated. This seemed to pacify Daniel somewhat and he turned back to consult with his team of counsels.
Alessandra pushed herself back from the table and stood but had to quickly grasp the table to steady herself. Her feet were unsteady and her head was swimming. She could not allow anyone to see her in this state, so she willed herself to move quickly from the room to the ladies room down the hall. She avoided eye contact with everyone and kept her gaze straight ahead and pushed through the doors of the courtroom. Once outside the room, she picked up her pace and almost ran the last few feet to the restroom. She barely made it to the stall before she hunched over and started retching into the toilet.
After several moments, she backed away and propped herself against the wall. Waves upon waves of nausea and cold chills continued to ripple through her system. She knew she had to pull herself together and fast. They only had a short period of time before the break was up and she was back under persecution. She reached into her purse and furiously began to dig around for her towelettes and makeup attaché’. When she grasped what felt like a useful cosmetic, she quickly pulled it out and gasped. How could she have forgotten? It had been days but it still should have been at the forefront of her mind. She could feel all the color draining from her body.
As if her life wasn’t tumultuous enough, she now had a new concern due to one night that occurred exactly seven weeks ago of reckless behavior. Alessandra looked down at the positive pregnancy test in her grip. She was pregnant with Steven Kane’s child.
One of my biggest pet peeves has always been ‘know-it-alls’. I used to abhor people who felt the need to tell me what to do and how to do it because their way was supposedly superior to my own. It would burn me up inside and I would always make it a point to push back and do everything I could in an effort to prove them wrong. However, the back and forth was exhausting and ultimately we both simply ended up looking like fools. “Fools care nothing for thoughtful discourse; all they do is run off at the mouth.” Proverbs 18:2 MSG
It always felt like the ‘know-it-alls’ were trying to control me. However, I have learned that there is a lot more to a ‘know-it-all’ than meets the eye. A lot of it stems from insecurity on their part, but there are some who simply want to be heard for once. So I am now of the opinion, what does it really hurt to allow them to have their ‘know-it-all’ moment? Does it really cost me anything to sit back and listen to someone tell me something I already know? Is there any real harm in allowing someone to feel like they are guiding me when I already know where I am going? Especially when it comes to your loved ones; it is simply who they are so why not accept it?
It was probably my own insecurities that had me opposing the ‘know-it-alls’ that crossed my path. Maybe I had to be the only ‘know-it-all’ in the mix, who knows. For whatever reason, I am certainly glad I have outgrown that type of mentality. It really is a waste of energy to constantly challenge individuals who feel like they are helping you. I have no qualms about sitting back and listening to unsolicited advice that I may or may not take to heart. I now respectfully listen and then I quietly come to a decision that I believe is in my best interest. It saves a lot of time, headaches, petty arguments and frustration.
I have always been a very contrary person, but the older I get, the more I realize this is not a big deal to me. It is so much easier just to sit back, allow the ‘know-it-all’ to have their moment and respectfully accept that this is just a part of their personality. You are never going to change them, so why bother trying?
Self preservation is the key to everything in my world right now. There are so many things I formally expended a lot of energy on, that are simply not worth my time. Let me leave you with this thought: Why not embrace all personalities, nurture the needs of those you love no matter how irritating, since it doesn’t cost you anything? Because really, what does it hurt?
~ Mara Prose
I had the most freeing moment this weekend and I simply had to share it with my Prosers. Anyone who knows me or who has followed me for sometime knows that I am all about promoting the right image. But those closest to me are well aware of how picky I am about, or should I say, WAS about my pictures. Well, this past week my gorgeous daughter turned 17 and she had several different events throughout the week to celebrate. The last one involved a dinner with her friends that took place after a very long day at work for me. By the time I reached the event, my hair was pulled up in a loose bun, my make up had wore off and I simply was not at my most stylish best; so far removed from the meticulously put together Mara of the past.
Of course, my candid camera daughter wanted a picture with her mother. I reluctantly posed and gave my usual instructions – watch those angles, LOL! When my daughter sent me the picture the next day, I inwardly groaned and quickly started to critique how fat my face looked, how I should have worn a dark colored cardigan, how I should have left my hair down that day, blah blah blah. I spent about an hour in this ridiculous state of mind until I really felt an inner voice tell me “wake up and shut up.” It suddenly came so clear to me that it was not about the way I looked in the picture, it was about capturing a beautiful moment with my daughter that I could forever treasure. Who cares how I looked! Especially since that day, that moment and that picture was not about me; it was about celebrating another year with my daughter on her birthday. The joy she had that night made everything else seem very unimportant.
In the past, I would have never posted the picture to my social media or really even shared it with anyone. But this time around I plastered it all over Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. I purposely added a filter with the word Love – and it represents not only the love for my daughter, loving that moment in time but also finally just loving ME as well. I have wasted so much time worrying about what other people will think of me, making sure that I always meet their expectations of how I should look, act, feel, etc and the freeing moment is that I can FINALLY say to HELL with all of those small minded critics. The beauty within me radiates far past how I wear my hair, what I choose to wear and whether or not I have a full face of makeup on. The true beauty of Mara equates to so much more than the superficial. My beauty lies in my relationship with my Heavenly Father, within my heart, within my children and within my passions and purpose in this life. I am very much over having to deal with anyone who cannot see past the exterior.
The people I gravitate towards on a continual basis make me feel good about me – ALL of ME! They are in my corner and supportive whether I am glammed up, a hot mess, grumpy, impatient, loving – they are simply there for it all, loving me, supporting me and encouraging me. They don’t focus on my weight, my hair, what I am wearing or what I am doing in life. They love me for me. So here is sending a special shout out of THANKS to a few women in particular who I am so grateful to God that He has recently blessed me with their friendship and sisterhood – Alisia Kennedy, Debra Young, Teresa French and Stacy Strickland. These women encourage me everyday and I do mean, everyday! Every morning we all start our day with praise, worship, inspiration and uplifting one another. There is no negativity, there is no competition, ulterior motives – it is all LOVE. I absolutely love being around them, chatting and sharing our lives with one another.
I sincerely pray that everyone is able to surround themselves with people who make them feel good about who they are, who will not try to change them and who will encourage them to simply celebrate their uniqueness. So much time is wasted when you spend it with anyone other than people who bring out the best in you. Believe me, I know and I am grateful to be awake.
The glamorous pictures may bring more likes but the likes on the REAL pictures are the ones that count for they tell me who all see ME for ME and deserve a place in my life – another tool of discernment so to speak. I share this enlightening experience to help others who may be struggling with seeking unnecessary validation from virtual strangers when all you have to do is look within and listen to that inner voice that tells you “YOU ARE ENOUGH!”
Until next time,
Author Mara Prose
PS: Do not forget to follow this link and purchase your copy of The Journey to Mara Prose: A Poetic Testimonial and/or The Davenports: A Battle of Wills and thank you in advance for ALL who support my writing. You also have contributed to bringing out the best in ME! November 6th, 2019 will be the release of The Davenports: Crescendo.
By popular demand, I will be releasing the Prologue for Book Two of The Davenports: crescendo in the coming weeks; with an official release date of November 6th, 2019 – in honor of my loving son’s birthday!
I have packed Book Two with an equal amount of suspense and cliffhangers as we return to Alessandra’s world of greed, corruption and vengeance. I hope you will continue on this journey as we discover the hidden secrets of The Davenports
Several years ago, someone very close to me told me NO twice when I was in need and I attribute my entire transformation as a Woman of God, Renewed Focus and the Development of my Self Identity to this encounter. At first, I was stunned, shocked and rejected. My heart was hurt and I could not fathom how this person who had always been my rock could reject me in my desperate time of need.
I realized I was on my own and I was the only person I could depend on to bring myself out of the mess I had created in my life. I am forever grateful for this rejection because it has opened so many doors that I would have never knocked on had I not been rejected. Because of this NO, I am writing more than ever, I am officially a published author, I have my own radio show and a new career in IT and I am pursing more and more endeavors every day.
The NO I received set me on a path to true independence. Stepping out of my comfort zone, desperate to find a new direction, made me focus on self improvement. Thinking outside of the box has been a Godsend. My do or die situation lead me to network with new clients who wanted my writing skills, my technical skills and excellent social media ability. But most importantly, it brought me closer to God, made me a better mother, a better daughter, a better sister and a better friend.
So in essence, do not feel bad or rejected when you are told NO. It simply means it wasn’t meant to be. All you have to do is shift your focus and learn that all you really need is faith in God and sheer willpower. Believe in Yourself, Motivate Yourself, Love Yourself, Nurture Yourself and most importantly Embrace All That Is You!
Life is hard but it is not impossible. Always remember, you got this and you can do anything you put your mind to. All it takes is stepping out on Faith!
~ Mara Prose
Happy Monday, Prosers!! Today, I simply want to share YouTube videos of sermons I have been listening to on repeat for the past several weeks in an effort to break all unhealthy soul ties in my life. May these videos bless you, free your mind and renew your sense of self!
~ Author Mara Prose
Happy Mara Prose Monday!! I am so proud to announce that the new and improved version of The Davenport: A Battle of Wills is officially on Amazon. The e-books is live and available for purchase now! The paperback will be available for purchase within the next 48 hours or less. So please, please help your favorite writer go bestseller by purchasing the book, leaving a review and spreading the word!! Follow this link to get your copy today: BUY NOW
This week I want to discuss the benefits of using solitude to heal, grow and evolve. It can be difficult sometimes to keep things from people who are close to us, but it is important to follow the intuitive guidance we receive. Even if their intentions are good, we may still want to be careful about who we choose to share certain information with and how they hold our vision. Today by following your inner wisdom to keep matters to yourself, you can make the most of the situation.
Sometimes even the people who love us the most fail to understand the things that are most important to us. If we have a dream that is precious to us, it makes sense to keep it close until it is strong enough to stand up to possible scrutiny and skepticism. We may just want to make our own decisions and learn our own lessons without interference. This too is a good reason for playing our cards close to our vest. We can be gentle with those whose interest in our well-being causes them to ask questions we’d rather not answer. And we may not have to keep our plans a secret for long. But today, by trusting that your feelings direct you to your highest and best good, you can follow them to success.
Next week, I will share how I have utilized solitude to forge a new path in life. Until then, embrace who you are, where you are going and most of all where you are meant to be – in Silence.