Category Archives: Books

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Brilliant Poetry x Visuals | ‘Girls Who Read’ by Mark Grist

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I love poetry. Not only do I love poetry, but I have great adoration and admiration for works that implement the conventions of prose and witty imagery to express simple topics, even dating.

In a brilliant performance, poet Mark Grist shares what he wants in a girl. While he loves tits and ass (who doesn’t,) remarkably the one trait he really looks for in a woman is a love for reading. Yes, he seeks a girl that reads. Continue reading

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Think.Believe.Inspire | Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss

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I wrote this quite some time ago, but as grad school quickly approaches and I embark on a new career path in graphic design, this piece of literature has been speaking to me daily.

Out of all the works by Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You’ll Go! has always inspired me to move forward in life and to forge new paths. Even though I know at some roads I’ll fall, I still have to keep moving forward and embark on this journey of ambition that will take me to great places.

So, I leave you with a heavy dosage of witty wisdom from Dr. Seuss. :)

Check out the entire text Continue reading

Hey Diddle Diddle: Books I Loved As a Kid

Hey Diddle DiddleBookstores are my addiction; give me some coffee, I’ll browse for hours! Whenever I see a bookstore, especially if it isn’t a mainstream chain, I have to clear my schedule and go spend several hours browsing every section. And even though I don’t have any kids (and not really big on the idea of having them,) I find myself stopping by the children section for the sack of nostalgia.

Not just for the sake of nostalgia, but on occasion I’ll read children’s books and help my mom decide what type of children’s books she would love to illustrate. And last weekend, while spending a good hour or so in the book section at Daedlus Books, I couldn’t help to get all giddy reading some of the books I myself loved as a wee child.

Talk about shelf-life! Some of these books have been around for over a decade and I bet some of the ones I was reading in the 90s have history that go back decades before. Let’s talk about Hey Diddle Diddle. Remember? The cat and the fiddle, the cow jumped over the moon, and how about those running spoons? Classic nursery rhyme, a book that I loved as a kid. :)

Hey Diddle Diddle was (and still is) a great story that is booming with whimsical charm, but there are a few other books I loved as a kid. So in the spirit of memory-lane and the joy that comes from reading a great book, here are a few of the books that I cherished.

Do you have any books that you loved as a kid? Feel free to share!

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Double Latte Books: Affordable Book Formatting Directly for CreateSpace & Kindle


Curious about publishing your own book?
Or perhaps you’ve attempted publishing with CreateSpace and Kindle, but to no avail, your efforts were halted by formatting issues.

Well if either of those questions are concerns you’ve experienced, then fret not, the solution is here.

Double Latte Books

Founded by Janie & Ramon McGee, Double Latte Books is an affordable publishing company that has not only self-published 14 titles via CreateSpace & Kindle, but they have effortlessly aided other authors and creative folks in their pursuit of publishing their works.

CreateSpace is an amazing self-publishing print on-demand service that has revolutionized the market. However, for those who are new to book publishing and e-books, the formatting involved can become a headache. Well, leave your worries behind, and let Double Latte Books deal with the “hassle” for you. 

With affordable rates and exceptional customer service, Double Latte Books will format your books with a guarantee of them being approved by CreateSpace for publishing. Not only will Double Latte Books make the formatting a breeze, but they will also help with cover design for Kindle and paperback books.

Oh, and the advice they provide is award-winning, and free. Suggestions for ways to make your book even more marketable are a service they provide without an extra charge; Double Latte Books wants you to be successful and have your works reach the masses!

So if you’re in need in some affordable book formatting, then Double Latte Books is your solution. Rates starting as low as $100 for an 80-150 page book. They will assist you in starting a CreateSpace account, setting up your book for Kindle, and aiding you in retrieving your ISBN. Trust me, Double Latte Books has got you covered.

Do you need editing and proofreading? Well then, they got you’ve covered as well. For additional cost, Ramon McGee, who has a BS from Princeton in Literature, will edit your book. He has years of professional experience, so you’re surely getting the best of the best!

Additional Services:

And for those who are interested in publishing their MP3/Audio CDs on CreateSpace, Double Latte Books can help you with that as well.

Janie has already released two CDs via CreateSpace and you can buy them on Amazon.com.

For more information, contact Janie McGee at doublelattebooks@live.com

P.S. If you’re in the need of Illustrations, cover designs, and artwork, then you’ll also want to check out Little Liza Jane and the amazing artwork of Janie McGee.

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Save $$$ | Rent Your Textbooks & Plant a Tree

Remember the days in middle school & high school when your teacher would assign you a textbook for the entire semester/year? It would usually be during that first or second day of class. The teacher would show up with a pile of books (sometimes a cart) and would go over how precious the books were. Some teachers would even have a contract you’d have to sign, and if you broke that contract then you would be in big trouble; it was literally life or death if anything happened to that book.

Ah, I used to love those days. I didn’t have to worry about spending cash on a textbook. The only thing I’d probably have to buy is a book cover to protect it, but even that could easily be made out of a brown paper bag or newspaper (creative & cheap.) Being a middle school & high school student wasn’t as expensive as college, but of course college is often the path you need to take in order to get a good career making decent money (college isn’t everything, but it sure does help.)

As a college student in my senior year, I can’t even begin to tell you how much money I’ve spent on textbooks. During my underclassmen days I probably spent well over $500 a semester on textbooks online, and that was just textbooks I bought used on Amazon.com & other websites. Luckily I always had a little bit left over from tuition, but sometimes the money did come out of my parents pocket. But those are trials of the past. Thanks to Chegg.com I’ve been able to save hundreds of dollars on cheap textbooks  and in the end simply return the books I really didn’t want in the first place.

There is nothing worse than having spent a bunch of money on textbooks, and in the end not being able to sale back the books for a decent price. Ah man, I’ve been mad so many times when I found out a new edition of a textbook has come out, which essentially decreases the value of the book I had bought for more than $80. But with Chegg.com I’m able to rent my textbooks, and at the end of the semester ship them back for free in the adorable orange Chegg box.

If you’ve never rented your textbooks before, then I’m telling you it’s awesome! For instance, this semester each of my textbooks cost about $60 or more for a used copy on Amazon.com. My technical report writing book was $167 used on Amazon.com & new for about $200. But with Chegg.com I was able to rent each of my books for about $30 and save almost $205.

Not only did I save money, but I also helped plant a tree. Yes, I helped a tree get planted somewhere in the US. I’ve actually planted a tree when I was in elementary school.We did a project in which we all got in groups and planted a medium size tree which would grow to full size as the years progressed. I never went back to see if that tree grew very tall, but it was such an amazing project to be apart of. Since I haven’t planted any trees since then or done anything with Habitat for Humanity, it feels nice knowing I saved money; Chegg.com worked with American Forests to plant a tree.

Every time you buy a book with Chegg.com, they plant a tree. So you’re actually helping the environment. Not only does planting a tree help the biodiversity of forests, but renting textbooks also limits the amount of paper used to reprint books. So if your goal was to be more “green” in 2012, then consider renting your textbooks and helping the environment by allowing Chegg.com to plant a textbook either in the US or World (you get to choose either one after checkout.)

Don’t go spend thousands of dollars on books you might not ever read again. Save money, rent textbooks, and a plant a tree!

©Jasmine McGee.ThinkSoul25. http://thinksoul25.com

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The Black Dating “Crisis”

My, my, my…yet again the state of Black dating has hit the media circuits. Usually I prefer to avoid commenting on the media frenzy surrounding Black women and the epidemic facing them in finding potential mates, but I figure I’d speak my opinion. For those of you who may not read a lot of blogs written by Black women, then perhaps you are unaware of the controversial new book by Ralph Richard Banks called Is Marriage for White People?: How the African-American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone.

First off, that title is way too long. I’m sure he could have easily shortened it to “Ebony Needs Ivory,” since his book is blaming the state of singleness on Black women and their lack of desire to date outside of their race. Now I must confess and say I haven’t read the book at all, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been reading the heated arguments made by Black women on other sites and blogs. It also doesn’t mean that I don’t have an opinion on this situation that goes beyond his book. This issue has been around for quite some time, so it’s worth discussing. But I do intend on reading his book, it sounds interesting. A lot of women are upset that he would write a book and seemingly place blame on Black women for being single. He believes that many Black women are close-minded in their dating choices and need to date outside their race in order to find men that are of the same socioeconomic status.

I can understand why a lot of Black women are upset, but I also understand somewhat what this Dr. Bank’s guy is trying to say. Let’s just get one thing straight, I’m Black, but I’m not the “stereotypical” Black woman that is usually depicted. I’ve written blog posts in the past how many people within the Black community I have met have classified me as “uppity,” “acting white,” or simply “weird.” Some, but not all, of the Black men I have encountered usually end up being intimidated by my success and my level of education. Let’s pause there and discuss that briefly. I haven’t even graduated college yet, but to be 20 yrs old and a senior in college seems to scare off a lot of Black men I’ve met that may not be on the same socioeconomic level as me. You’d think it wouldn’t be a big deal, but a lot them are just shocked I’m doing so much with my life at a young age. What do they expect me to do? Be a stereotypical ghetto Black girl with baby daddy drama and no education? Nah, I think I’ll pass on that.

I’m not knocking anyone who does come from that lifestyle track, but that isn’t who I am. I’m extremely well educated, always have been and always will be. I don’t have kids, I haven’t seen all the “Black films” I’m apparently supposed to watch, and I’d rather listen to soulful house music instead of hip-hop. My past experiences in life have deemed me not a “catch” by a good amount of non-college educated Black men I meet, which is why I’ve never limited myself to just Black men. I actually can see where this Dr. Banks guy is coming from, but it doesn’t mean the way he phrased everything is right. Whenever anybody discusses they Black dating “crisis,” they must truly take into account the reality within the Black community.

A lot of Black men end up in prison, dead, or having a criminal past and not being able to be equally competitive in certain career tracks. It’s true we live in a society that is still subject to racial disparity, but some Black men really just need to stop playing the blame game and get it together. I know it’s difficult and Black men have always been a threat to White men in the workforce, but there are a lot of Black men that do have their stuff together and are legit. They hold distinguished degrees and are in positions of power in their respective fields. But usually the guys that are doing so well don’t have time for the negative attitude that some Black women portray, and these men tend not to be the most swag literate.

I personally prefer the intellectual, often geeky guy, over the swag literate guy who most likely can’t captivate my attention. One thing I detest the most is a high level of ignorance in a man. I absolutely am turned off by the guys that may be extremely attractive, but their conversation is ignorant. That goes beyond color for me. Any man of any race can be ignorant, so I’m not one to sit here and say all Black men are ignorant. But the major “crisis” in the Black dating pool comes when we start playing a major blame game and forget to take into account that some people or on different socioeconomic levels than others. Instead of bashing a man because he may not be able to hold an intellectual conversation or not well-educated, simply just shut-up and go mingle with men that are on your level.

I used to be one to complain about all the ignorant guys who would find me sexy and have this desire to know me, but the moment I actually began speaking about more than comedy and looks, they would lose interest and never call me again. It doesn’t too much bother me, because I also cut off men that are ignorant and just not worth my time. There is nothing wrong with realizing someone just isn’t on the same mental level as you and you guys don’t click. But so many Black men and women began bashing each other and playing the blame game, when in reality they need to just not trip over it and take people as they come if they want to. It’s ignorant to just limit yourself to one type of person based upon race, when in actuality it should be based upon personality and even ambition. When it comes to dating and the type of man I like, I don’t base it upon their skin color. I love all types of men as long as they are well-educated, culturally diverse, and fun to be around.

Anytime I’ve ever tried to get with someone from a different lifestyle experience, it never works out. I’ve had plenty of men tell me that the fact I’m well-educated and so successful at a young age is intimidating; they just can’t handle me and everything I’m doing. But that’s quite alright. I know that even in the midst of this Black dating “crisis,” they are still Black men and men of other races out there that are on the same intellectual and socioeconomic level as me. So instead of playing the blame game and complaining about the problem, I’d rather just enjoy being single and keep hope alive that things will change once I graduate and have a whole new network of interactions working in D.C. around working professionals. If you throw yourself in an environment immersed with a diverse amount of people that are on the same intellectual and socioeconomic level then you, then the dating “crisis” wouldn’t be an issue.

In the right environment and the right mindset, a lot of Black women would just be another beautiful Black woman with a Masters degree, not a threat to just “Black men.” Don’t limit yourself to one type of man, but don’t discount Black men either. There are a lot of “good” Black men out there that are well-educated, they just probably aren’t in the club jamming to Lil Wayne and Gucci. Black people are still getting married, they just aren’t in the mainstream stereotypical depictions of Blacks in the media. You will probably find the well-educated Black men in the engineering department or at a bar with their White friends being the token. Instead of chasing after the “thuggish” Black guy who you obviously know isn’t on your level, for that geeky token Black guy. Those guys are some of the coolest Black men out there, trust me, they are pretty awesome. Be calm and love a “geek” that is on your level, instead of going for a guy that you realistically have nothing in common with.

-ThinkSoul25

©Jasmine McGee.ThinkSoul25. http://thinksoul25.com