Reading for Self-Improvement

“To learn or get knowledge of from something written or printed.” ( on ‘reading’)

If we only try to be more observant, we’ll find that the most reading people have done in recent years consisted mainly of checking out friends’ social media statuses to be updated on others, and texts through short message services (SMS). Let us not fool ourselves – those hardly qualify as real reading. It’s not that you should stop. It’s about you spending some quiet time for yourself and enjoying a good read.

A good read does not necessarily mean a good book. It could be an article from a magazine or journal, whether online or offline. The main requirement is for it to be actually informative aside from enjoyable to read. According to a blog post by George Tziralis, Executive Director of Openfund, a seed capital fund, “A good read is the one that gets you to think about it, more time than it took you to read it.” That’s spot-on.

Don’t miss out on a lot of benefits that can be gathered from actual reading.

The benefits:

*builds new skills with new ideas

*improves vocabulary, grammar and phrasing

*improves memory and verbal language skills

*opens window to other cultures and people

*adds creativity

*enhances critical thinking

*great way to use interesting information

*boredom- and stress-buster during conversations

*creates experts out of those who have read about particular topics long enough to be  considered knowledgeable

See what you have been missing? Try reading again and see how it works for you. A good read may be the best read ever yet.



Red-Eyed Monster

If you hadn’t heard (or read, to be more specific) from me this recent week, it’s because I hadn’t been blogging. Well, no secret there, he he. What is not secret is I got sent home as I was beginning to turn into a red-eyed monster….


But don’t you worry, that’s nothing violent or controversial, definitely not mutating. Just means I got conjunctivitis, the pink eye, sore eyes. Total bummer, folks, and another level of eeeww-ness whenever I wake up from long sleep. Well, if you ever suffered from pink eye even once in your life, you’d know what I mean.  Getting better, though, 90% there.

Mind you, it’s not just me, but it’s currently “doing the rounds.” I got my “pink” (well, red) ones from the youngest in the house. The older boy got it from him as well, but I got it the worst. Husband’s oh-so-lucky he doesn’t have it. Well, so far.

I have stayed home for the rest of the week. But I, thinking this would be a great time to catch up on my writing, assumed wrong. Had to deal with other matters that got me physically and mentally tired, there’s no time to write. Priorities. Pfft. You grow up then you got priorities. Boo! Down with priorities! So not fair >p

Currently, I am still feeling that tiredness, but I didn’t want to not say hello to my pals here and bloggerize with you a bit. Hope to be 100% back in the next two days. Meanwhile, I’ve got other posts just waiting to be published.

Blog and Roll, guys!!!

When You Write, Walk Your Talk


Do you really know what you’re talking about?

There was an article I read on how good web developers should be. Based on the stuff the author wrote and considering that some visitors like myself were not as technology-savvy as he was, he did seem very credible about the subject.

A good web developer, he explained, should know this program, that software, most social media, and so on and so forth. He kept enumerating the must-bes and must-knows. He was an expert, nobody was about to contest that. Until he said that one needs to know English and, to emphasize, followed it up with “Did you born in the USA, UK, …….?” Uh, what? Say that again?

I paused and after a moment of comprehension, laughed. He definitely meant “Were you born…”

Considering how grammatically incorrect many of his statements were, I just knew he wasn’t kidding. It wasn’t for me to laugh at someone’s broken English. I laughed at the irony in what that particular non-native English speaker said. If he didn’t seem credible enough doing the technogab, my faith in him as an expert would have died.

Let that be our lesson. The first rule in writing is to write what you know – all of us writers, I suppose, have been made aware of that.  Evidently, he could use more practice to sharpen his communication skills.  It’s not about the English, really. That was circumstantial. It should have been about knowing his targeted audience, his medium, what to write and how to write about it.

If you want to give the impression that you  are experienced in certain fields, go ahead, share your knowledge. But know when to draw the line. Do not claim to know something you obviously are not good at. The least you can do is to have a field expert check your work before you click on “publish”.

You don’t just talk the talk, know what I mean?


There are very good tips here from author Richard Hardie. Incidentally, you can find him at and at his blog

Thank you to Jane Bwye for giving us opportunities to learn from the professionals. Kudos to you both!

Jane Bwye

My Author Countdown continues into its fifth month with this contribution from seasoned YA author and friend, Richard Hardie.

RH photo

  1. Be absolutely certain you want to be an author; it’s a hard slog and statistically only one book gets properly published for every 1,500 that are written. Terrible odds! Mind you, a lot of really awful books are written and even some of those get published. Some people write books just for the thrill of typing the two words “The End” and don’t mind not seeing their work in print. They may even vanity publish and pay for the privilege which can be terribly expensive and guarantees nothing, except that your book will physically exist on your own shelf, if on no one else’s.
  1. In your first book, write about a subject / location / person that REALLY interests you passionately. It’ll be obvious in your writing, because enthusiasm, like…

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NEW & SHAMELESS!!! #atozchallenge2015

What’s NEW??? Well, I’ve become shameless. I’ve got a shameless plug, that is. This is something new that I am trying out, new in the sense that I’ve only done this now.

I feel awkward calling it “Fan Page,” but that’s what Facebook generally calls its pages,  particularly those accounts owned by individuals.

“A fan page is the only way for entities like businesses, organizations, celebrities, and political figures to represent themselves on Facebook.”  (Heyo Blog)


It’s me at J.GiOFFICIAL

Reading it makes me feel more awkward as I am not sure to which category I should belong, if I should even have such an account. But then again, it’s a personal choice. And if I believe I am a writer in my heart, then I should claim it. Why should we always limit our choices in life?

I do love this description much better as it “covers” me:

“Creating a Facebook fan page is an amazing way to promote your business, build awareness for a cause, gather support for your band, or to advertise in a number of other ways.” (wikiHow)

This should give me more motivation to write, plus I will be able reach a bigger number of audience. I doubt that I’ll have that much actual fans, I am not delusional, but just having a few would be very cool for me already.

That said, we go to the shameless part — Please LIKE my fan page!!! It would mean so much to me….Thank you, guys, you’re so kind 🙂

Meanwhile, if you are wondering whether opening such an account is for you when you already have an account, this might help: Personal Page vs. Fan Page.


I hadn’t the time and resources to continue the A-to-Z Challenge until now. This is my “N” post, N for “New”.

N of A to Z

Do you have a fan page? Why not show to us? Just add the link to the comments so I can approve your posting the link.

Share Your Advocacy

Hey, advocate! I am inviting you to write about your advocacy. Is it about a non-government organization? a foundation? an institution? a project? a benefit event? Share it to us!!!

Write about it and feel free to submit here. All you have to do is to write and follow the guidelines found at the ADVO.WE.B. (Advocacies We Believe in) page. Oh, and there’s no fee whatsoever, don’t worry.

When I began this blog, I started a section where I was to share links to causes. Thought of asking people to share theirs. However, I worried that I may be giving way to bogus causes, plus I didn’t have lots of time to go looking for sites myself, so I stopped. Also, people hardly check those side links, anyway, which defeats the purpose. But now that I am a bit wiser, I am opening up my blog again for this and have decided to dedicate a page for any advocacy and give you a chance to guest blog about yours. I am inviting you all to be a part of this endeavor.

As I am not a power blogger, I cannot promise that it will yield great results, especially not immediately — please understand that I am neither a blogging rock star nor a magician. It is mostly through your own hard work that success can be gained. At least, I can promise a few visits to your post every now and then by peeps interested enough. Your writeup will be posted on this blog, of course, and listed on the ADVO.WE.B. page. This will be automatically shared via my Facebook and Twitter accounts. Hopefully, people will be encouraged enough to actually visit the links you are sharing.

That said, I would like to share the first one on the list, which will hopefully grow and become a catalyst for change, however small.

Back in 2011, I presented on this blog the SOS Children’s Villages Philippines, a child welfare non-government organization that I personally know and worked for.


This is my post: SOS: A better future for children

It was actually a writeup that I was asked to pen for The Philippine Star. It’s a combination of what I wrote on my own and what the org has provided as info. To read the whole thing, please click on THIS.

Meanwhile, thank you for taking the time to read this. If you have an advocacy to share, kindly refer to the guidelines I mentioned. And thanks in advance!!!


My Missing Random Post

A few weeks ago, since I was not able to write a proper blog post for maybe a month or so, I decided to post something about random stuff. However, when I tried to find the draft, I could not find it, which was a blessing in disguise in a way for it paved the way for a more personal post.

I decided to to post something in particular now as a page and where did I happen to find this? In the pages section! That’s why I could not find it before, I set it as a page, not a post!

Anyway, I decided to edit and continue with it…

Okay. I’ve been busy with work, family and foosball lately. That explains why I haven’t had proper time to write a proper blog post.  Just had my laptop fixed, ergo, I may be able to enjoy more time writing again. Meanwhile, there are some random stuff that I’d like to share to you.



What. this isn’t fierce enough for ya? 😉

FOOSBALL!!! I just mentioned it at the start. A foosball table came to my and my officemates’ lives just this June and we’ll never be the same again. It was just all for fun and then we decided to have a tournament. First, it was the doubles. And now, we’re playing singles — it’s every man/woman on his/her own.

It’s one of the funnest activities we’ve ever had in the office. Brings out the competitive nature of some, but it’s still all for fun. Winners get whatever the others have pledged (mine would be his/her choice of either a cup of Starbucks coffee or an order of milk tea at the milk tea store near the office).

Personally, I don’t think I’m winning anything except a few matches, but don’t tell them that 😉  I am up against kids who grew up playing fast games online and in the arcade. They have busy hands. Hey, I’m still learning from these experts.

In the Foosball World, I am Alias: Li’l Dove Feather:

Li'l Dove Feather

Check out my theme song…Fierce, too, eh? What I lack in skills, I make up with pretend, LOL!!!


You fictionists out there might want to try and join this contest! The Creative Writing Institute is holding a writing competition. If you love to write whodunnits (although they are open to other genres…Does genre have a plural form…?), this is for you. I’ll try to squeeze it in myself, but I’m not promising anything. I should have had my laptop fixed much earlier.


The CWI Contest Guidelines

Read the whole instructions and MORE from their site. Oh, and Happy 7th, CWI!!!!!


So cute and funny!!!


Dat be us from the office 😉


The Office Jumpshot!!! Photo credit: Adjhan Penus

That was taken during our company outing at Laiya, Batangas. I’m not a jumper, not really good at it, it’s one of my frustrations, actually. So this was my best jump, like ever (I’m third from right)


Wise words.