Dear Young People

  Dear Young People, Here is my message to you: Up until last week, I believed that many who had voted for Trump, people I know and love, would never, under any circumstances, condone someone crossing state lines with an automatic weapon to go to a protest and kill two people. I would never have believed that this sort of indoctrinated hatred and lawlessness would be something they could defend. But two things happened in the past few days that have shown me that I'm naive, and that people are dishonest about their true intentions: The first is that over 200 thousand dollars has been raised by a so-called Christian group and a far-right party for Kyle Rittenhouse's defense. The … [Read more...]

12 Things I’ve Learned from Life and Facebook

  1.  Comparing oneself to others can make us envious, insecure, or smug. None of these makes a good fashion statement. 2.  If the goal you're striving for is one you truly care about it, you’ll lead a life of passion. If it’s to impress others, you’ll lead a life of emptiness. 3.  Most of us are not evil, but too many of us are wary of the unknown, afraid of change, or ill-informed. 4.  Acquaintances and colleagues: There are those who’ll try to help you, those who’ll try to sabotage you, and those who have issues that may cause them to be toxic. Be thankful for the first group, and pay it forward. Ignore the second two groups, but remember who they are. 5.  Share … [Read more...]

It Takes a Catalyst

  The tweet below by Dr. April C. Armstrong ignited one of the most thought-provoking conversations on Twitter today. It's easy to dismiss what someone says if you don't particularly like that person. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a polarizing character. However that speech she gave resounded with women across all aisles. And no one echoed my thoughts about what she said more than Dr. April C. Armstrong in this tweet. I didn't realize I'd been raised to accept abuse. Not only from men, but in general, and that did spill over into my earlier relationships with men, even into some of my earlier friendships, and too often in my early work environments with some toxic bosses and … [Read more...]

We’ll Meet Again, Vera

  Today, June 18, 2020, Vera Lynn passed on. She was 103.  This past May, Dame Vera became the oldest person to enter the U.K.’s top 40 music charts, with her greatest hits album coming in at number 30 ahead of VE Day, the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II in Europe. Vera was known as the Allied Forces Sweetheart, the iconic voice of WWII. During the war, she spent her time traveling to all corners of the earth to entertain the Allied soldiers.  The song she made famous, "We'll Meet Again" was a song that comforted many who were away from home, and those whose loved ones would never return.  In an address to the nation shortly after the U.K. government imposed a coronavirus … [Read more...]

Standing in Solidarity? Really?

  And here's the post that most likely will end Patricia's career in publishing. But, it has to be said, so here goes: The publishing powers that be have "embraced" the #BlackLivesMatter movement. All of us authors have received email after email about big publishing houses standing in solidarity, big, national writers groups standing in solidarity, etcetera. And that's great. But, have they, really? And if they have, why did it take nationwide outrage before they noticed how demeaning, demoralizing, and downright UNFAIR this industry is to writers of color?   Here's what I know about my industry's historic and systemic whiteness:   Nearly 80 percent who work in publishing … [Read more...]

Us and Them

  The teacher who stays after school to give extra help to a student who needs it, is a true teacher. The teacher who mocks a student who's having trouble learning, is a child abuser with a teaching certificate. The priest who cries with you, says a prayer with you when your loved one dies, is a true religious leader. The priest who molests an altar boy is a pedophile wearing a priest's robes. The police officer who talks a distraught stranger out of jumping from a bridge truly believes he must protect and serve. The police office who holds down an unarmed man and kills him by kneeling on his neck is a murderer wearing a blue uniform. When we excuse the inexcusable vileness of … [Read more...]

Without Writers

  Without writers there would be no Disney World, because there would be no fairytales. No Cinderella, no Ariel. No Peter Pan, Tinkerbell, or Captain Hook. There would be no Muggles or Wizards, no Scriptures or Bible, no Sneetches on Beaches or elephants saving Whoville. We could never contemplate the fate of Frankenstein’s’ monster, or the Nine Circles of Hell, Faust’s punishment, or lost Paradise. Without writers there would be no Academy Awards Best Dressed, because there would be no films and no cause to celebrate those who act in them. There would be no Star Wars or Citizen Kane. No Downton Abbey or Dark Shadows. Bill and Ted would never have had their excellent … [Read more...]

Tell Them. Today

    In the past month, I've been in touch with three females aged eighty and above who have always inspired me. I've admired them and strived to be like them, should I live as long as they have, because despite their age, or maybe because of it, they have always lived each day fully and dynamically, and by putting so much good out into our world. However, in our recent conversations, under the cloud of corona virus quarantine, all three seem "off their game," for lack of any other way to express it. Though all three are as healthy as ever, they all mentioned their own 'approaching' death. Listen, let's face it, we know we're finite creatures. We know that the clock is ticking … [Read more...]

Teachers, Bullying, and the Code of Silence, by Angelina Iacovou

  Dear Readers,  My guest blogger today is Angelina Iacovou, a student from New York who has just graduated from middle school. After much research, she has written the following essay, which she hopes will help new teachers deal with bullying in school: __________________________________ In a bullying situation, teachers should know that the students aren’t going to break the code of silence. The code of silence is when the target, the bystanders, and even the bully’s group won’t say anything about the bullying. This is because they don’t want to become targets themselves, they don’t want to “rat out” their friend, or, if they’re the target, they don’t want the bullying to get … [Read more...]

Spirits Aboard the RMS Queen Mary: Patricia V. Davis Interviews Angela Richardson

Growing up in Florida, author and photographer Angela Richardson heard about the RMS Queen Mary when she was a child, but it wasn’t until she went out to California as an adult to visit her now husband that she got to see the ship in person. Says Angela, "When we drove over Queen’s Way Bridge, my jaw dropped. I couldn’t believe how amazing the ship looked sitting in Long Beach Harbor." Initially, it was the sheer size and beauty of the ship that drew her in. But once she began touring the ship, she became fascinated with the engine room. For some reason, she found it very comforting, and in fact there are times that when visiting the ship she will only go into the engine room. For Angela, … [Read more...]

When Will Things Get Back to Normal?

  For sure, that’s the question we’re all asking ourselves. But I think it’s pretty clear to all of us that life is not going to go back to the “normal” we had before this virus. How ironic that I chose to ‘disappear’ before all this happened. And then, the moment I returned, we all had to ‘disappear’. I’d promised that that’s what this post was going to be about, hadn’t I?—why I chose to leave social media for an entire month, why my publicist turned it into the #FindPatricia game. (I know we all enjoyed that part of it, at least, and I do certainly thank everyone who sent in videos, and everyone who played the game.) I had reasons for wanting to “get away from it all.” Things that … [Read more...]

May I Make a Suggestion?

  Please think about this. Maybe this is not the way you want to go, but for the duration of this catastrophic event, I've posted my last negative political post. I've posted my last negative post, period. There is literally a virus in the air, killing people. Some people I am talking to this week might be dead next week, and I include myself in that, of course. Many of us are very scared, too many more are financially stressed, some beyond measure. No matter what our politicians do now, we are facing an uncertain future, as personally as that can get. And tempers and emotions are high. This past week, there was a upset in my own little world with a beautiful person who means a lot to … [Read more...]

Sisters of the Undertow

  Sisters of the Undertow, launched in late February 2020 is Johnnie Bernhard’s third novel. Her inspiration for the story came from an experience she had at an author's event in a downtown urban library, when she realized that a number of the patrons were homeless. The experience of reading to those who live on the streets led her to develop a character who is a librarian working at a downtown library in Houston. Johnnie says, “To understand the diversity in Houston, please consider the fact that over ninety languages are spoken there. Houston is truly an international city, which I love. This allowed me to create some terrific characters in Sisters of the Undertow.” The other … [Read more...]