Book Review For History Of Wolves By Emily Fridlund

(We only review brand new books that are set to be released)

This 228-page Debut book is published by Atlantic Monthly and possesses an ISBN of 9780802125873.  It is also available in ebook.

History Of Wolves is a coming-of-age account told by a grown-up narrator looking back at her teen years.  Events during this time forever changed her beliefs in how the world works.

The book’s intelligence is that the events that ruined it’s main character “Madaline/Linda” are so appalling they may change the reader’s beliefs as well.

With a setting in the middle of a Minnesota winter, the depth of feeling Emily Fridlund writes into her story makes the reader just as cold as the falling temperatures in her book.

Linda resides in abstract poverty with her hippie parents, in a house that not only lacks central heating, it also has no door.  Just a tarp keeps the biting cold out.

When a new family moves into a house across the lake from where “Linda” resides, it is not long before she becomes their young son’s babysitter.

Linda notices the boy’s parents are, like her, slightly off-normal.  It is not long before the reader realizes that more than “just not right” is happening with these people.

The twist of the plot is when the reader realizes that “something” is not what they think it is…it is much worse!  This causes the reader to stop in their tracks and restart reading the book, looking for the clues that have to be there.

They are not hard to find.

This book was released on January 3, 2017.

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Brett Matthew West
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The Nashville Freelancers
codyscorner13@gmail.com

(On Twitter – Nashville Freelancers)

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***Brett Matthew West is a Nashvillian and a long time Freelance Writer.  His myriad of feature articles have been published in a vast array of newspapers and magazines around the United States.  He also possesses an extensive online presence for his Short Stories.***

$20 Million Dollars Slated For Upgrade Of Music City Center

A new year, a massive expansion.

A $20 million dollar renovation of the Music City Center will provide a food-and-beverage-outlet, and even more space for events, in an effort to make Nashville more competitive in the convention business.

While only three years old, the Music City Center plans to remain state-of-the-art and is seeking a new way to produce that slight edge to draw even more people to Nashville.

Spanning sixteen acres, renovations on the 2.1 million-square foot Music City Center are scheduled to be concluded by November of 2017.  Other nearby attractions include a 27-story Westin Hotel, an Embassy Suite, and a planned 1,480 additional rooms at the corner of Eighth  Avenue and Demonbreun Street.

Containing 350,000-square feet of exhibit hall space, the Music City Center is located at 201 Fifth Avenue South in the heart of Downtown Nashville, near the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Bridgestone Arena.

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Brett Matthew West
Founder and President
The Nashville Freelancers
codyscorner13@gmail.com

(On twitter – Nashville Freelancers)

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***Brett Matthew West is a Nashvillian and a long time Freelance Writer.  His myriad of feature articles have been published in a vast array of newspapers and magazines around the United States.  He also possesses an extensive online presence for his Short Stories.***

 

Always Write For Your Own Enjoyment!

Recently, we received a question from a reader asking us since we are an organization of Professional Freelance Writers, if we could pass along some helpful hints in how Writers can achieve more success in their writing?  So we are doing just that in this posting.

To begin with:  ALWAYS WRITE FOR YOUR OWN ENJOYMENT!

That is the very best advice we have ever been given as Writers.  It goes without saying, and certainly does not need any clarification.  What follows next are tips we have discovered help most successful Writers.  Perhaps you can put them to good use in your own writing.

1.  Take stock of your life through writing prompts that dig into personal inspiration and are therefore much more rewarding.  This helps to build self-esteem, find a sense of purpose, and maintain authenticity.

2.  Humans are creatures of habit.  For the most part, routines and schedules rule their lives.  A verb to remove from a Writer’s vocabulary is “stress”.  Replace that word with a more affirmative outlook.  Learn how to manage the moods and relationships of characters.  Positive habits are key to a Writer’s success.

3.  Build pockets of peace times into your writing schedule.  Power down, pause, and reflect.  This helps the Writer become more mindful of the present moment.  Pinpoint incidents.  These tiny tweaks can make all the difference in characters, attitudes, and interactions.

4.  Carefully track what works, and what does not work, for you as a Writer.  Examine the behaviors and actions of top notch Writers to learn what helped them rise to the top of their profession.

5.  Get off the couch and get organized.  Messiness makes writing look sloppy, while organization brings a focal point.

6.  One of our personal favorites is to write like your life depends on it!  Be hungry!  A very helpful way to achieve this is to research, research, research your topic!  This will allow a Writer to possess a mindfield of details to draw from.  The reward for shedding what is not needed in a piece of writing is improved quality.

7.  Enjoy your downtime from writing.  Writers have good reasons to be busy with their craft, however, it is very important to step away once in a while and de-stress, if only for a few moments.

8.  Cultivate a sense of curiosity about the world you live in.  Observe life more closely and dwell on how you want to illustrate your observations into your writing.

9.  Be bold enough to conquer your fears as a Writer.  This will allow you to achieve your goals.  People work hard to avoid what makes them uncomfortable.  Through passing the buck, and procrastination, they evade what they are afraid of.  Break this cycle of fear through a sense of purpose.  Find what works for you and be honest about the problem.  This will allow you, as a Writer, to confront the challenges holding you back.

10.  ALWAYS WRITE FOR YOUR OWN ENJOYMENT!  As stated earlier in this posting, this is far and away the single-most important, and very best, piece of advice we have ever been given as Writers, and we pass it on all the time to other Writers.  If you do not enjoy what you are writing why write it?

You can help our blog grow by:

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Brett Matthew West
Founder and President
The Nashville Freelancers
codyscorner13@gmail.com

(On twitter – Nashville Freelancers)

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***Brett Matthew West is a Nashvillian and a long time Freelance Writer.  His myriad of feature articles have been published in a vast array of newspapers and magazines around the United States.  He also possesses an extensive online presence for his Short Stories.***

The Second Annual Bobby Bones And The Raging Idiots’ Million Dollar Show For St. Jude

Controversial, for sure, but braving a bad flu bug to host his Second Annual Bobby Bones And The Raging Idiots’ Million Dollar Show For St. Jude, the iHeartMedia Radio personality was presented two million reasons for having done so by Garth Brooks when the Country Music Hall of Famer handed Bones the oversized check on stage at the Ryman Auditorium last night.

While doing so, Brooks said with a huge smile on his face, “What I love is this paycheck isn’t going to you, and I know that’s what you love about it too.”

Afterwards, they dueted on Brooks Signature Smash Hit “Friends In Low Places”.

The Star-studded lineup for the show featured Rascal Flatts, The Band Perry, Sam Hunt, Caitlyn Smith, the Brothers Osborne, Thomas Rhett, and Garth Brooks.  Sam Hunt, and The Band Perry, led the charge in getting other Acts to agree to perform for the event.

Bones became involved with St. Jude after visiting the hospital and said of the famous institution, “I understood it was more than brick and mortar in Memphis, but a hospital in the middle of the country..for the world.”

He was most impressed with St. Jude’s mission, of which he stated, “If you have a cancer they’re working on, you’re in for free.”

Country Newcomer Caitlyn Smith added, “It’s an absolute honor to do anything for them {St. Jude’s}.”  (We, the Nashville Freelancers, wholeheartedly agree with her statement)

Known for unscripted interviews, and discussing all aspects of work and life on the air, the nationally syndicated “The Bobby Bones Show” first launched in Music City on the WSIX Morning Drive Time spot.

Bones has also appeared in the 2009 motion picture known as Bandslam, been on the ABC Television Drama known as Nashville, and guest hosted Live! With Regis And Kelly.

You can help our blog grow by:

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Brett Matthew West
Founder and President
The Nashville Freelancers
codyscorner13@gmail.com

(On Twitter – The Nashville Freelancers)

Friend us on Facebook at The Nashville Freelancer

***Brett Matthew West is a Nashvillian and a long time Freelance Writer.  His myriad of feature articles have been published in a vast array of newspapers and magazines around the United States.  He also possesses an extensive online presence for his Short Stories.***

The Superfoods Superhype

Regarded by most experts as meaningless, and at worst, harmful, many dietitians and nutrition scientists refer to the so called “superfoods” as a mere marketing device.  There is very little, if any, scientific proof these superfoods live up to their claims, which can leave their practitioners with harmful “one-sided diets”.

Some superfoods make the boasts they will make you faster, younger, stronger, and healthier.  They are supposed to be nutrient-dense with plenty of polyphenols, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

According to Kyle Hazen, a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, “Whole foods, as opposed to processed foods, are healthier for us.”

These include vegetables, legumes, fatty fish, fruits, and whole grains. (This article is not about these good foods, so read on.)

While superfoods like goji berries, acai, kale, and quinoa may possess good nutrients they are typically most readily available as juices and supplements.  They also may not be readily available in your local grocery store.

One major issue with supplements is that supplements may contain only a slight trace of the superfood.  Another is that there are fillers and other ingredients that constitute most of the supplement.  And, a third would be the high cost you pay for the supplement, because there is probably only a very small amount of the “superfood”  in the supplement.  So, you are not getting what you think you are getting.

Looking at trying to obtain superfoods in juices?  Remember, that although juices preserve a lot of the fruit’s nutrients, juices also contain a ton of sugar.

If you are still curious to try a superfood, try it in it’s whole food state, not as a supplement or a juice.  Here are three of the latest superfoods fads to consider (if you desire to waste your precious time and hard earned money on them).

mangosteen – a Southeast Asia, Southwest India, Puerto Rico, and Florida-grown fist-sized fruit with a rind full of xanthones, which are alleged to reduce inflammation in the body, reduce hardening of the arteries, and naturally combat cancer.  (Good luck with that one!)

bone broth – made by simmering chicken or beef bones with vegetables or herbs, bone broth is rich in protein.  It is also high in phosphorous, calcium, potassium, and magnesium that allegedly heals your digestive system.  The collagen and gelatin in bone broth is supposed to be good for your skin, nails, and hair.

tiger nuts – a root vegetable originating in Ancient Egypt.  Tiger nuts are usually grown in Spain and Africa.  They are also high in prebiotic fiber, protein, unsaturated fats, and resistant starch.

You can help our blog grow by:

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Brett Matthew West
Founder and President
The Nashville Freelancers
codyscorner13@gmail.com

(On Twitter – Nashville Freelancers)

Friend us on Facebook at The Nashville Freelancer

***Brett Matthew West is a Nashvillian and a long time Freelance Writer.  His myriad of feature articles have been published in a vast array of newspapers and magazines around the United States.  He also possesses an extensive online presence for his Short Stories.***

Meet the Chair Of the Tennessee House Republican Caucus Ryan Williams

Influential in the landmark FOCUS Act, that changed how four-year public universities are governed by the state, the new Chair of the Tennessee House Republican Caucus, Ryan Williams, who represents District 42, now fills one of the highest leadership positions in the House.

However, Williams’ controversies began in the first few weeks of his leadership role when he banned media members from caucus meetings.  His reason for doing so what that he felt caucuses should be free to discuss issues only between caucus members.  He also views his position as “it might be a lot more officiating than anything”.

A rank-and-file Republican for the first six years of his State Legislature career, Williams refers to House Speaker Beth Harwell, a potential candidate for Governor in 2018, as, “The leader of the band”.  Harwell will have her hands full trying to unite a some times fragmented House Republican Caucus.

Causes Williams has championed include sponsoring legislation to prevent prescription drug abuse.  In his position as the Chair of the Republican Caucus, policy strategy, raising money for the Republican party, and coordinating support or opposition to measures brought before the House will be Williams’ main responsibilities.

Williams’ desires include raising the gas tax, which is considered the biggest issue of the session.  He also wants to establish a tax on internet sales and grow the Republican’s majority in the House.

In this capacity, Williams has stated, “In some ways, the caucus, is quite frankly, blindly trusting me to reestablish things they were always familiar with that I only knew for a year or two.”

Away from the political side of the House, where he occasionally wears a wooden bowtie, the Blountville native considers himself to be “just an employee”.  Essentially, he is a Salesman for J&S Construction in Cookeville, a region that is popularly referred to as “The Hub of the Upper Cumberlands”.

Officially, Williams is the Director of Business Development for the company.  There, he prepares proposals on building projects for a wide variety of causes including landscapes, airport hangars, homes, churches, and Fortune 500 companies.

How will Ryan Williams perform in his new role as the Chair of the Tennessee House Republican Caucus?  Time will indeed tell.

You can help our blog grow by:

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Brett Matthew West
Founder and President
The Nashville Freelancers
codyscorner13@gmail.com

(On Twitter – Nashville Freelancers)

Friend us on Facebook at The Nashville Freelancer

***Brett Matthew West is a Nashvillian and a long time Freelance Writer.  His myriad of feature articles have been published in a vast array of newspapers and magazines around the United States.  He also possesses an extensive online presence for his Short Stories.***

It May Be Duty Free, But, Is It A Good Deal?

Are you traveling in or out of Nashville International Airport, the 32nd busiest airport in the United States?  Here is some information on purchasing those Duty Free items such as sunglasses, cameras, watches, tech items, electronics, and fashion products that may grab your attention along the way.

For many travelers, making their way from the Security checkpoint to their gate requires a stroll through a retail bazaar that, in reality, is a cash cow for the airport.

What exactly does Duty Free mean when you purchase these items at the airport?  In simple terms, it means the merchandize on sale does not have any locally imposed excise, value-added, or other sales taxes on it.  That is, provided you do not exceed the generous allowances the US permits.

In no way does Duty Free mean what items you can bring into the country, and, most Duty Free stores add additional markups to an item’s retail price, with just enough of a cut to make them appeal to travelers.

Now consider this:  almost all items you can purchase in a Duty Free store you can buy for less at a Big Box retailer such as Wal-Mart.

The Nashville Freelancers do not endorse, nor do we necessarily condone, the use of alcohol and tobacco.  For authenticity of this article, the truth is the best deals in Duty Free stores are, generally speaking, on these two items, as well as other heavily taxed ones.

Travelers returning to the United States from foreign countries are also limited to one liter of alcohol.  Limits for the Virgin Islands and the Caribbean have varying allowances on the quantities that can be brought into the United States.

However, the best price reductions are on cigarettes and cigars.  Limits on their quantities are 200 cigarettes and 100 cigars.

NOTE:  The TSA will allow travelers returning back to the US, with a domestic connection, to carry the bottle of alcohol with them under two conditions:

1 – the alcohol is in a transparent container
2 – the alcohol is in a secure, tamper-evident bag

You can help our blog grow by:

-Liking our posts
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Brett Matthew West
Founder and President
The Nashville Freelancers
codyscorner13@gmail.com

(On Twitter – Nashville Freelancers)

Friend us on Facebook at The Nashville Freelancer

***Brett Matthew West is a Nashvillian and a long time Freelance Writer.  His myriad of feature articles have been published in a vast array of newspapers and magazines around the United States.  He also possesses an extensive online presence for his Short Stories.***