Anyone can be an expert today……..

I have always loved to read. One of the first books I remember being totally in love with was The Secret garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. I spent one whole night under the covers with a flash light because I simply couldn’t stop reading it. That experience led to my passion to read all manner of books, and to have a great desire to write one of my own. Well, I have been fortunate to fulfill my dream of becoming an author several times, but the journey was not easy. I sent many a proposal  to various publishers and no one was interested until I landed a PBS show. That was over fifteen years ago and the book world has significantly changed. Anyone can write a book now and many do. You no longer need a literary agent or a publisher because you can publish the book yourself. This in my estimation is a blessing and a curse. When you complete a book that you have gotten an advance for and you complete it, editors, lawyers, and a marketing team read your book before it is published. Spelling, fact checking, and any form of plagiarism are checked and re-checked. That is not often the case with self-publishing or the many blogs that have manifested over the last several years. You can allude to being an expert in any field and unless someone wants to spend the time or money to uncover the truth you can go on your merry way and continue duping the public. You can spend a lifetime educating yourself and trying to share information that has substance. But, in today’s world anyone can be an expert simply by writing a blog or going on UTube. If you meet your new partner in a supermarket, you can now write about how to find a man/women in the deli section and get a following. Am I sounding jaded and cynical? Probably. But isn’t it time we faced realty? Just because we are in the age of social media, it doesn’t mean that everything we think is sacrosanct and needs to be shared with the general public. It might be wise to have some unexpressed thoughts or at the very least do some fact checking.

Reading A Book Is The Perfect Cure For Boredom

It’s difficult to think of a person who doesn’t have the desire to learn – whether the subject is history, sports, politics, cooking or just plain trivia.

Research suggests that individuals who are avid learners are likely to be more physically and mentally healthy than their less-engaged peers. There has been incredible validation by science in this area. What we learn and how we do it will greatly influence our future.

I can still see my grandfather at 86 sitting at the kitchen table with his espresso, Italian newspaper and stacks of books.
And my mother never stopped flaunting her latest finding about the stock market or something interesting she’d heard on the Larry King TV show. Every time we chatted, she would challenge me to see if I knew what she knew. I felt compelled to keep up with her.

I try to do the same thing with my children and grandchildren because I want them to stay on top of things, not be pushed under by them.

The grandkids know I won’t put up with the common kid complaint: “I’m bored.” I knew never to say that because I’d always get the same response: either “go read a book” or “I’ll give you something to do.” The latter meant manual labor. My mother could always find something for me to do that was not particularly exciting, such as cleaning the bathroom. Reading a book became my savior.

Having a brain that can function into our later years takes effort. Yes, some of our genetic coding and circumstances out of our control mean something. But every day we can make a point of increasing our learning capacity. Even simple acts like becoming more observant or listening more carefully instead of thinking of what you’re going to say next can be great educational experiences.

Meanwhile, I’ll leave you with a great quote from Eartha Kitt: “I am learning all the time. The tombstone will be my diploma.”

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