My Writing Portfolio

I am a blogger and writer with a disability focus specifically on blindness and visual impairment. I have written email marketing campaigns, newsletter content, magazine columns, newspaper articles  and an entry in a published anthology. Here are a sampling of published clips from some of those publications.

Outlook Business Solutions

Eight Tips for Effective Virtual Networking

We are all familiar with the traditional networking of having small talk, giving elevator pitches, and exchanging numerous business cards. It is attending events where shaking hands and meeting in person meant you could form a meaningful connection with another person. But with the coronavirus looming, people are now practicing social distancing, working from home and helping their children with virtual learning. This is all a part of the new normal; yet the key to successful networking is to get to know people, have genuine conversations and add value.

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Halloween Safety Tips for Visually Impaired Children

Halloween is traditionally known as the spookiest holiday of the year. People celebrate by dressing up in creative costumes, participating in fun activities and eating lots of sweet treats. This fall holiday is fun and encourages socialization and self-confidence for visually impaired children.  They can hang out with their friends, go to costume parties, trick-or-treat, play games and more. Get your child ready to have a ghostly good time during Halloween with these tips.

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Negotiating Sighted Guide while Social Distancing

Using sighted guide technique is paramount for navigation when traveling for many people with a visual impairment. While safely latching on to an elbow, stumbling, tripping, and falling can be avoided. Additionally, physical human closeness, guidance and touch are the foundations of how people with visual impairments connect with the world. But ever since the coronavirus appeared everyone has been requested to practice social distancing. This means staying physically away from each other, six feet apart, no hugs, handshakes and no sighted guide assistance. For those with a visual impairment trying to negotiate sighted guide while social distancing can be tricky but not impossible. 

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Tips for using virtual videoconferencing platforms

Videoconferencing platforms like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype and Google Hangouts are increasing in demand and popularity as more people work from home. Employers need easy and efficient ways to stay connected to their staff including people with visual impairments.

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VisionAware

Cool Down this Summer with Five Microwave Cooking Hacks

I use the microwave mostly for heating foods but not for cooking. It comes in handy for warming up a nice mug of coco during cold winter months. Or reheating leftovers and popping my all-time favorite snack, a buttery bag of popcorn, to munch on while watching an audio described movie. Otherwise, it is sitting on the kitchen counter holding double duty as a quick device for heating foods and a place holder for my vitamins, memo pads and other odds and ends. But when I read an article in the newspaper about cooking in the microwave I had to do a double take.

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How to Vote During a Pandemic

It is time to vote again for our nation’s president and other governmental officials. But this year is like no other we have seen before because we are in the midst of a pandemic. This means advance planning, preparing and thinking more strategically about how you will cast your ballot as a blind or visually impaired person.

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Ways People Who Are Visually Impaired Can View the Solar Eclipse

It has been almost 100 years since a total solar eclipse has happened coast to coast in the United States. Typically, solar eclipses occur somewhere on earth about once every year and a half, but on Monday, August 21, everyone in the US will be able to see this momentous event. A solar eclipse occurs when the moon blocks the disk of the sun and, as a result, the day will darken. Lasting for only a few minutes, it is an incredible sight to see but very unsafe to do so because of the radiation that is released.

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How I Honor Earth Day Everyday as a Person Who is Blind

From the time I was a little girl I was aware of the importance of not being wasteful and recycling. My parents and grandparents would reuse old household items. Things like jelly jars would easily substitute as drinking glasses. Old brown paper grocery bags would be reused to cover my school paperback books to keep them from damage.  My parents would also take bags of old clothes and furniture to donate them to nonprofits like Goodwill and the Salvation Army. So, as we get ready to celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd I reflect on my childhood.

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Inclusively

My Challenges Applying for Jobs Online

Advancements in computer technology have made it easier and better for me to search for employment online. I no longer must get a sighted person to assist with filling out a paper application or faxing my resume and cover letter. Today, with my screen reader I can independently and on my own time go online to search for jobs.

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Benetech

The ADA Helps Me Live Work and Play as a Blind Woman

When this powerful piece of legislation was signed into law it opened the door to more opportunities, fuller inclusion into mainstream society and more equal access. All of this rings true in my life as a person who loss her vision after the ADA was passed.

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Rooted in Rights

Voting Isn’t Always Accessible for Blind People But I Refuse to Not Vote

As an African-American who grew up with parents who lived under segregation I have known and understood the importance and power of the right to vote. Many times my dad, who was born in Birmingham, Alabama, would constantly tell me that when I grew up to always have handy a copy of my government ID, library card, and voter’s registration card. Today I am a 47-year old with vision loss, and guess what I have in my purse? You got it, my government ID, my library card and my voter’s registration card. All with braille labels on them, of course!

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Audacity Magazine

Seeing My Ability Not My Disability In The Workplace

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month and the perfect opportunity to learn about the abilities of the disabled in the workplace.  As a disabled person I applaud the efforts made to educate our society, dispel the myths and stereotypes and highlight the achievements of the working disabled.  I am a proud part of that group but it has not been an easy journey.   My employment travels have led me not only to a job but to a satisfying career as a writer and disability advocate.  I was not introduced to the disabled community until I went blind about six years ago. 

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WOW/Women on Writing

Carol Celeste Inspires Others to Write to Heal, Write to Grow,

Carol Celeste has been a freelance writer for 20+ years publishing books, articles, reviews, essays an an array of miscellaneous works. In 2006, she took her career to a new level and acquired an existing business and began teaching personal essay writing online.

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Writers Weekly

Writing in the Dark

The ability to write a newsworthy story, create interesting leads, edit numerous pages of text, hunt down experts for interviews, or find an eye-catching

headline can be challenging for most freelancers. Now add that to a visual impairment and then you have something even more daunting. Undeterred as a totally

blind freelancer, I dove in head first with little professional experience and a few college clips. I am making a meager attempt to shed some light (no

pun intended) on my three-year career success and how I used my disability to get published. The first thing that pops up when I tell people that I am

a freelancer is how can a blind person write?

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Dialogue Magazine Career Columnist

Be Our Guest: Working in the Hospitality Industry

The hospitality industry is a field where you can meet new and interesting people on a regular basis, where having a strong work ethic is a plus, and where you can make a nice income. These are some of the reasons George Robins, of Nappanee, Ontario, decided to follow this career path.

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Motivate, Educate, Inspire! But First–Finish That Brief

When Angela Winfield watched Phylicia Rashad play Clair Huxtable on television’s COSBY SHOW, she knew that she, too, wanted to be a lawyer. She liked the fact that Clair Huxtable, unlike most lawyers she had seen on TV, had a happy, loving family with whom she was able to spend lots of quality time. Winfield readily admits that she had a lot to learn about practicing law in those days, a process that she clearly still finds enjoyable, even if she doesn’t get quite as much time away from the office as Clair Huxtable did.

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A Scense of the Stage

Imagine seeing the stage of a college-level production of one of your favorite Shakespearean plays. Where do you set up the props? Where should the actors stand or sit? How should the lighting be placed? These and many more are the questions David Richman, Professor of Theater and Humanities at the University of New Hampshire, must answer when working with his students.

“You must have a sense of the stage,” said Richman, who has been a theater professor for 24 years. 

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“The Tradition” On Air with Terry Wood

“You are listening to WTWZ AM 1120, The Tradition, bringing you some of the best bluegrass music in Mississippi,” is the typical opening line that roughly 500,000 listeners hear as Terry Wood, the radio owner, reiterates with his smooth baritone voice before the beginning of his on-air program. WTWZ is nestled in Jackson, Mississippi and has been owned and operated by Wood since its inception in 1982. The station has a variety format, with inspirational programming in the morning and bluegrass music the rest of the day, hosted by Wood five days a week.

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On Common Ground News

Greenhill Let’s Creative Juices Flow with Grilled Salmon

When Jonathan Greenhill, co founder of GoDeKalb.com, is not busy handling the technology and business side of this on-line newspaper you can find him cooking his favorite dishes for his friends. “Cooking is a creative outlet for me,” said Greenhill, who has been working on the website for almost 3 years. “Also, it allows me to bring out that part of my nature that is hospitable and entertaining.”

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Nonprofit Documents Illuminates Stories of Black Females From Around the World

African-American women like Rosa Parks, Billie Holiday, Ida B. Wells, and Shirley Chisolm are an intricate part of the fabric of this country and play a vital role in its history. We can read their incredible stories in school textbooks, novels in libraries and bookstores, or even on the Internet. But many stories of black women still have not been told, written and documented. The National Black Herstory Task Force, Inc., a non-profit agency established in 1997, wants to go above and beyond the traditional way that history of black women is research, collected and written.

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Finding a Good Real Estate Agent Requires Following Key Steps

Buying a home is never an easy process. All the different and confusing terms, the numerous stacks of paperwork and all the forms that need to be filled out can make an exciting experience a nerve-racking one.    These factors make it critical to hire a real estate agent that can help you maneuver through the uncharted waters of home ownership. Nine out of 10 buyers use an agent to help them find a home according to a January 2006 study done by the National Association of Realtors®; one of the largest surveys of real estate consumers ever conducted. 

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Ellenwoo Teen Launches His Own Lawn Care Business

Concerned about the physical appearance of his neighborhood and wanting to make some extra money, Steven Vashon Williams, Jr., 14, decided to do something about it.  Launching his lawn care service two years ago, Williams hit the sidewalks of his Ellenwood community along with his friend Marquis Nolden, 13,  and started mowing and weeding the lawns of his friends and neighbors.  “The yards in my neighborhood were looking pretty bad,” said Williams, who will be attending Martin Luther King Jr. High School in Lithonia this year.  “I was too young to work a real job so this worked for me.”

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Black Santas – from tiny figures to standing St. Nicks adorn Conyers’ residence

‘Tis the season to be jolly and Melody Williams, Conyers    resident, believes in expressing her joy in holiday cheer. For the past 10 years, she has been enthusiastically decorating her home with a festive army of black Santa Claus collectibles. From various sized figurines to dolls, a rug and even a sweat shirt, Williams creates an atmosphere which is reflective of her African-American heritage and her love for the Christmas holiday.

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