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Bloganuary Day 6 – Why Do You Write?

Published January 6, 2023 by Maryanne

FOR THE MONEY! LUCKY ME!

Why do you write? Perhaps I can say “for the money” because I’m blessed that this is what I do for a living. That photo above is my latest book, which can be found in Barnes & Noble bookstores, and also the first book I wrote where I received an advance check! Coincidentally, today a check is going in the mail from another book publisher — as I just signed a contract to write my sixth book which will be about the Jersey Shore!

However, it didn’t start out that way. I was a very late bloomer. No, I didn’t write for the school newspaper. As a teen, I was a lost soul who didn’t know what I wanted in life. I just wanted to be left alone and not bullied. I somehow knew better days were coming. The month I graduated was the happiest day of my life. My younger sister Kim said something genius to me, “Now you should want the time to go really slow.” I had everything to live for because the bullies were GONE!

I didn’t go to college and began working right away. I came from a single-parent household and had to pay “room and board” to live at home. I had a temp job, then I worked as a shipping clerk at Scribner Book Company. I was around books and often had the opportunity to bring freebies home and read. I was always a reader and loved going to the library with my mom as a kid.

Back then, the drinking age was 18. Since I loved music, I went to see bands in New York City every single night and come home around 5 a.m. because life began after midnight back in the early 1980s. The next day I’d sleep in my car during my lunch break.

I had become friends with a young girl named Lisa James (RIP) — who later became TJ Ellis after transitioning to male, and we kept in touch until TJ’s death a few years ago. Out of respect, I will call “Lisa” by their name TJ. … TJ had this really cool fanzine (a self-published fan magazine) called Punk, Junk, and Pasttimes. She made me her assistant editor and I helped her write articles and conduct interviews. We had some very wild times with NYC punk musicians, which I’ll share another time. But this is what gave me the writing bug.

All this was before the internet and if you wanted to get published, you’d have to type stories on a typewriter. I didn’t get my first home computer until the 1990s. I took at home writing courses from Writer’s Digest and The Children’s Institute of Literature. Back then, I was hesitant about my talents and only submitted a few stories and received a few rejection slips. In the meantime, I wrote poetry, which was easy. I read my poetry in coffee houses, art galleries, and bars. And it was very well received. I even had a write up in the Star Ledger, which is a very popular New Jersey newspaper.

My big break came in 1995. I was hired as assistant to the publisher for Outlaw Biker Enterprises. They published magazines like Outlaw Biker, Tattoo Review, Skin Art, Art Alternatives, and In the Flesh. In the very beginning I sold ads for the magazines. I excelled and even got bonuses. But I did not want to be a sales person, I wanted to write. I became friends with the editor and by that summer, I had my first article published — worldwide!! These magazines were extremely popular with young people in the tattoo community all over the planet!

From then, I went on to write for a series of newspapers and magazines in NYC. It was like being a celebrity. I was able to get on the guest list for all theatre, free meals at restaurants, and live music. Sometimes I’d work until the wee hours of the night and get to go home in a town car! What a life!

After 9/11 I didn’t want to work in NYC anymore, and I scored a job at a local newspaper for seven years. Again, the perks were incredible. Plus this time I even got free yoga classes! I also became an award-winning journalist, exposing the Montclair police force for writing more tickets for parking violations versus moving violations.

Seven years later, I decided to work for myself and created my company Pear Tree Enterprises (the link is below) during the summer of 2008. I’ve helped countless writers edit their books and get them published. From 2013 to 2019 I wrote five books. One of those five books, “Love Cats” is in it’s second printing under my pen name Kyrstianna Mercury.

In addition to book writing, I continue working as an editor, journalist, and proofreader. (Along with public/motivational speaking, non-union acting, cat sitting, and sometimes over 50 modeling!)

I absolutely love my career as a writer and feel blessed to make a living doing so. Writing isn’t something you decide to do — writing chooses YOU. If you find yourself unhappy at your day job, not getting along with people because they are not as deep as you are, or not being able to go ONE DAY without writing, even if it’s just in your journal, this may be your calling!

And do not think, for one minute, that writers can’t make money. Yes, it’s not the same as it was decades ago, but YOU CAN make a lot of money as a writer, with a very healthy, comfortable salary. Just keep shooting those arrows. Perhaps start part-time then elevate to a career!

I wish all writers the best of luck! I am available for ZOOM coaching, as I’ve coached other writers. Email me for rates and to set up a consult: maryannechristiano@gmail.com …. I am a real person and less expensive than many writing scams you see out there!

If you liked this blog, feel free to buy me a kombucha: https://ko-fi.com/maryannechristianomistretta

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

Visit my business page, Pear Tree Enterprises, at: https://peartreeenterprises.wordpress.com/

I Can Do That!

Published September 22, 2022 by Maryanne
Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

The above photo was from Tuesday night. I was in anticipation of another outdoor summer concert, but reflecting back to a few days prior when I saw one of my idols, Patti Smith, perform at Count Basie Theatre.

It was one of many concerts I saw of her. And this one was more thrilling because I was accompanied by my husband, who never saw her before and really enjoyed himself.

Since then, I’ve been on a binge watching everything Patti Smith on You Tube. As much as I love her music, I especially love her interviews. She’s a wise sage; a warrior.

One interview in particular touched me. It illustrated how we can manifest our own destinies. She said after seeing Jim Morrison on stage, she said, “I could do that.”

Four powerful words can take us to the next level fierce. When we believe in ourselves, we can tap into something inside of us that can make others believe in us too.

Early in my career of being self-employed, before I became a professional speaker, I would help book artists gigs in restaurants, senior centers, assisted living facilities and libraries. One time an activities director wasn’t interested in the musician I was promoting, but said she wanted someone to speak about health.

I can do that, I said to myself. But first I asked her, “Do I need certification to speak on health?”

She said I didn’t.

“I can do that!” I said, eagerly.

Nevertheless, I did my homework and was able to speak about general, common sense type things like the importance of walking, eating whole foods, and not smoking.

I was nervous and read from the page, not connecting with the audience as I do today when I speak. But I was well received and invited back several times! Since then, I’ve spoken in front of countless audiences, from very small–as in four people–to over a hundred.

Nowadays, I hardly read my notes. I don’t stand behind a podium. I walk around, crack jokes, talk to the audience, and ad lib.

During the pandemic, my speaking career was on halt, but I’ve used ZOOM to my advantage, reaching people all over the world! Now that the pandemic has lightened up tremendously, I’m out and about again with six upcoming lectures!

And it all started with four great words — I can do that!

If you liked this blog, feel free to buy me a kombucha: https://ko-fi.com/maryannechristianomistretta

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

Visit my business page, Pear Tree Enterprises, at: https://peartreeenterprises.wordpress.com/

It’s In The Cards

Published September 4, 2022 by Maryanne
Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

As an author, when your books go out-of-print, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. My first book, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” was self-published. When Next Century Publishing became no more, I was secretly relieved. At the time I wrote it, it seemed like a cute idea. I took some fun stories and used song references for each chapter. But I got shy and left so much out. It may also have been too happy of a book. When people read books about the music business, they expect to hear about groupies, drugs, and gossip. My book was none of that–just down to earth fun. But many people did love it and I made a lot of money not only from direct sales, but selling on my own, doing book readings.

My second book, “Love Cats” was also self-published by Next Century. That was a fiction book, and a very cute story. That was my “baby.” I thought it was perfect — for those who would “get” the lesson I was driving out, “don’t be selfish.” After that one went out of print, it was picked up almost immediately by Pink Flamingo Media (the link is below). It was the first time I used a pen name, Krystianna Mercury.

My third book, “The Gypsy Smiled” was picked up by a non-vanity publisher, a traditional publisher. Even though it was the first book I didn’t have to finance, it was not the greatest experience. I counted the days until my 5-year contract was up! Luckily my next two books, “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” (published traditionally by Higher Ground) and “Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” (published by KiCam Projects) were much better experiences, and I was able to work with incredible people.

Last month the contract FINALLY ended with “The Gypsy Smiled.” I couldn’t wait to begin submitting it to other publishers for a second printing. When I submit a manuscript, I usually take an entire day and find out 17 publishers. That’s the magic number, and then someone says “yes.”

This time, I only submit to two, so far. I stopped submitting because I have other ideas for the book.

I’m not ready to speak publicly about these ideas because they may or may not work out. If they do, it will be really cool. If they don’t, I’ll go back to submitting for a second printing. I’m leaving it all up to the universe; and in gypsy-speak, “It’s in the cards.”

The thing is, I felt confident to “step out of the box.” That is major. So whether I win or lose, I still win.

We all do when we take a leap of faith!

If you liked this blog, feel free to buy me a kombucha: https://ko-fi.com/maryannechristianomistretta

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

Fearless Over 50

Published April 10, 2022 by Maryanne

I waited a long time to wear this cool shirt. It has that 1980s new romantic look. The collar is higher than I usually wear, but I love going out of my comfort zone. It goes so well with distressed jeans and my Katy Perry open toe booties. And the sunglasses are really cool too.

To pull this look off, I had to up my game with my hair again. For several months I went for a more subdued hair color. Finally, I had enough of looking natural and had my hair bleached with thick magenta highlights.

So many people — young and older — are dying their hair fantasy colors, and it’s really fun. I absolutely love the ocean blue color Jack White is rocking these days. But it’s not just rock stars who have cool hair, it’s people from all walks of life.

As someone who was bullied as a kid for wearing heavy make-up and a leather jacket (can you imagine?!) I feel so blessed to live in a time when it’s accepted to express yourself visually, whether it’s with clothes or hair or tattoos or make-up or whatever. Days of being stared at by ignorant people are long gone. We can all do what we want, and it’s just awesome!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

It’s No Joke, WordPress is The Best!

Published April 1, 2022 by Maryanne
I’m a fool for WordPress!

It’s April Fool’s Day, but it’s no joke that I love WordPress best. I may be prejudice, but I like WordPress best.

Earlier this year, I stopped using Facebook. I didn’t delete my page altogether because I have photos and memories on there that I cherish. Plus, some friends simply do not understand, “contact me via email.” They forget that and continue to contact me via Messenger. That is okay, but I only check Facebook once a day, whereas I check my emails all day long.

I never got Linked In. It’s more for career-oriented people. Me, I have my home based business of writing, editing, and blogging for various publications on a very part-time basis. I was on Linked In for years and it never did me any good. It was just about people following me to get me to follow them. And after a month of using Instagram, I realized it was the same. Sure you can follow your favorite celebrities or influencers, but do you REALLY want to see them every single day?! No. I am not celebrity-obsessed. I like variety. And I also like finding things on my own. If I discover a new artist, or re-discover an old one, I’ll go on a You Tube binge to satisfy my fan-energy. But I do not need to “follow” them and have them in my psyche 24/7.

As for myself, I’m not really promoting anything. I’m not a hard-sell. I want people to find my books, my articles, and my You Tube channel organically. Not because I have 1000 friends pushing it up in a feed; or because I paid someone to promote it; or because someone follows me and now I’m obligated. Damn, that is WORK — work that I’m not getting paid for.

But the good news is, WordPress isn’t like that. Well, sometimes it is, but I can spot the phony faster on here because of how a blog is presented. If someone is pouring their heart out and being truly honest, count me in! If someone is liking several of my posts in a row, just out of obligation, or to entice me over to their page, it’s a turn off. No one can read THAT FAST!

However, the beauty of WordPress is that it may be harder to find a topic I really like. Hunting for something gives one a special high. Like trying to find a record in a record store, rather than purchasing instantly on Amazon.

And WordPress is forever. If you want to find something on Facebook or Instagram, you have to scroll endlessly. With WordPress, all my blogs are neatly organized by year. And I can hide something that no longer relates to me and no one would be the wiser. I also get a kick out of it when someone “likes” or comments on a blog I wrote several years ago! This happens often. Unlike Facebook and Instagram where everything is current and fast moving. Though I love my life today, I do love all that I ever was. I cherish the old stuff, just as I’ll cherish what’s happening in my life now — two years down the road.

Of all internet platforms, WordPress is the least ego-driven. People are here because they like to write. They have dreams. Or they are working something out. For me, like Live Journal in the old days, WordPress is a glorified paper diary; but only the things I want to share with the world. It’s a taste of my life, but not my entire life. It’s a contrary to people constantly updating their Facebook and Instagram pages with every thought, anything they feel share-worthy, and promotions for everything they do.

On WordPress, I won’t find someone who wants to tag me in a photograph they took of me at an event in order for me to share my photo of me with them in return to get them promoted.

People do not know how many followers I have on WordPress. It’s not a place to be judged by how popular you are, but rather how good you write. Sure, someone can get 150 “likes” but that’s just from others on WordPress. Your backend will tell you the real deal. I’m the only one who knows how many are reading. It could be a little bit, or it could be hundreds. And I feel more humbled by that. By people not knowing, I understand they are here because they want to be here.

It’s just a beautiful thing. And I’m fortunate to be in on this secretive gem of a space along with the rest of you.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

Working in Jammies

Published March 31, 2022 by Maryanne

Working in jammies?

I wrote the following on Facebook in 2014, before the pandemic, self-employed and working at home:

“It’s so true, when you look good you feel good. Working dressed up instead of pajamas or sweats today and accomplished so much in ONE hour, including getting people on the phone that I wasn’t able to reach since last October! So, no more working in jammies for me — ever again! 😃”

I’m sure I did work in my jammies again at some point. But how fun is it to get dressed up and work in full make-up, even if you’re not going anywhere?

Dress up!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

Happy Mom and Pop Business Day 2022

Published March 29, 2022 by Maryanne
Autographing my book “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” for a child who was bullied.

Happy Mom and Pop Business Day!

I’ve been self-employed as a writer and editor since 2008.

I’m also an international author, with books in Barnes & Noble STORES.

I’m available to edit book manuscripts (completed manuscripts only at this time). Contact me to set up a free consult: maryannechristiano@gmail.com

I also help business owners write blogs and have MANY repeat clients!

I love my life!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

Love Your Pet Day 2022

Published February 20, 2022 by Maryanne
Nicholas

I should have known something was up because Nicholas came to our bed at 4 a.m. wanting snuggles – not food. He started out between my husband and I and worked his way over to me. He just knew today was Love Your Pet Day! My husband and I are the proud pet parents of three beautiful cats!

Give your babies extra love on this special day!

Sammy
Happy

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/

Maryanne is also available for book editing and coaching. Rates are competitive.

And for positive messages, visit Be YOUnique, the Anti-Bullying You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA/videos

Bloganuary Challege – Day 15 – What’s a Life Lesson You Feel Everyone Can Benefit From?

Published January 15, 2022 by Maryanne
Photo by Josue Soto

Patience is a life lesson everyone can benefit from.

Just yesterday I was having an amazing conversation with a young man while waiting on a long line at Whole Foods. I rarely converse with strangers because I’m often bored with small talk. But we got deep fast–career, meditation, philosophy. Wow, what a treat.

He told me he worked in film. I joked and said, “If you ever need someone to play a mom, contact me.” (Because I have played moms in indie films, commercials, and videos).

He was impressed that I did acting, but I told him writing is my real career–that I’ve been writing professionally since 1995. He said he was originally a writer, but went into film because writing didn’t pay much.

I disagreed and said you just have to have patience and weed out those who low-ball you, because you’ll always find a client or company willing to pay you what you are worth. TRUTH!

I’ve always been the late bloomer, but by waiting my turn in life, I’ve gotten everything I want out of life. I published my first article at 35. Married at 48. And wrote my first book at 50. And in between all this, there were many more firsts later in life, but these were the most significant, for me.

Moving at a slower pace doesn’t make you lazy or complacent. It means you are choosey. And you should be. Nothing is worse than rushing and making a bad move. Trust the journey, and love your life even while you are waiting.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: https://eroticbooknetwork.com/product/love-cats/