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My journey began on food stamps • Creative non-fiction, freelancing & living life on your own damn terms • Featured in Entrepreneur & Inc.

So powerful you’ll want your children to someday read this too

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I couldn’t even think about cooking, let alone eating, until I wiped those gross boogers off his face.

Of course, I’m talking about my little brother.

We were pretty young and home alone after school. In today’s climate, we’d probably be scooped up by some governmental body and placed in “a home” simply because my parents wanted a better life for us.

You see, we grew up as latchkey kids.

I had to get myself off the bus, make dinner, do my homework, and then take care of myself until my parents got home after work each night.

Oh yeah, and then do it all over again for…


And the 8 takeaways that might change how you think about writing forever

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“What are you doing?”

“I’m writing.”

“Every day for a month?”

“Yup. 30 days, 30 posts.”

That’s the mini conversation I had with myself when I started this 30-day writing challenge.

“What the heck did I think I was signing up for? You cray-cray or something?!”

Yeah, still talking to myself.

But I digress…

Here’s the thing. It turns out that it wasn’t as daunting as it sounded, and my life is so much better because of it. …


And a simple framework that anyone can use, even if you’re not a nurse

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I am a nurse turned freelance writer.

But to tell you the truth, I actually believe I’ve always had the writer in me, long before I ever became a nurse.

If you’re not a nurse, you may be wondering why this is relevant to you. So before I go on and before you click away, as you read this, please imagine the skills you learned in a different career field, training or schooling.

I bet there’s relevance there too.

One of the main reasons I enjoy writing is that there are many similarities between being an RN (registered nurse)…


Photo by Luis Galvez on Unsplash

“We can handle small surges and clusters; it’s not a big deal. But when you get this continuous surge ongoing hour after hour — you see these patients, and they are all coming in with the same symptoms huffing and puffing, some of them are gasping for air, and some of them are confused because of the lack of oxygen, and they’re elderly, and they’re young, and they’re distressed, and they’re agitated, and then there are no family members around…It is draining.” Dr. Jamil Madi, Valley ICU medical director.

Y’all who know me, and maybe don’t “know me” but follow…


Now may be the best time EVER to make the move into travel nursing

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Starting a career as a travel nurse is more than just a way to see beautiful locations, meet colleagues across the US and eat new foods; it’s an investment in your own well-being.

Travel nursing has much to offer, and it may provide you with a fresh perspective on life if you use it. Travel nursing is the most incredible method to gain these advantages firsthand.

It’s been a challenging year for travel, to put it mildly. Nurses and healthcare professionals battled mightily to stem the pandemic and halt routine nursing journeys. The good news is that as the world…


Today’s online voice for nurses

Picture of author and creator of The Nurses Lounge

We’re a unique breed, you and I.

Nurses.

We step into a role each day where folks sometimes live and thrive or stop and die. It’s a hard truth for anyone who is not a nurse to read that.

But we nurses know that it’s all in “the job.”

Sure, I’ve been an RN for twenty-five years, but aside from the license, I’ve also been a startup founder, an author, a daily column writer, and a bevy of other things.

But this isn’t about me.

It’s about you…and for you.

We created the Nurses Lounge as a place where frontline heroes, nurses, and all the…


Thanks a lot “Ordinary Joe”

Photo of author and his spouse

Last night was the premiere of what was supposed to be a super cool TV show called “Ordinary Joe.”

And in case you’re wondering…no…I won’t have any spoilers here.

When I first saw the previews, I was intrigued. I mean, who wouldn’t be? It’s about this fella named Joe who is faced with seeing life in three ways. But look, I can’t explain it as well as IMDB, so here’s how they describe the show:

“Life is all about the choices one makes — and sometimes, what one does in a single moment can change everything. Joe Kimbreau faces one…


And other dumb advice for the beginning writer

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Your article is a big old stinking pile of horse dung.

Those were almost the exact words I said to myself moments after drafting up my very first piece of work. And in my mind, it was just that. A “piece” of work.

Or, as some of my fellow writers say…junk.

They then say to “ship your junk anyway.” Don’t be afraid. It’s by publishing junk that we get incrementally better.

Yeah, that’s what they say.

But here’s why I have a HUUUUGE problem with that statement.

I have a big issue with that statement because you aren’t YET qualified to know what exactly junk is.

I’m not proposing that your first writing efforts will be smash hits. Still…


Here are 3 massive minimalist takeaways you can implement into your life today

Photo of author: Rick Martinez

I always believed that the secret to a beautiful life was partially embedded in having more stuff.

You’ve heard it as well. Get a well-paying job and career. Buy the white picket fence and slide a couple, or three, nice cars right in. Preferably the kind made in Germany and that warm your butt on cold days.

Accumulation of things, they said, was the righteous path to having a life worth living.

I bought into it.

Look, I’m not gonna make a judgment call either way. You see, along that path to white picket fences and German cars, we also…


One dad’s perspective on the moment you find out the news

Photo by OC Gonzalez on Unsplash

It was hot as hell, and I couldn’t believe they didn’t sit our group inside.

Yet here we were, sitting in a covered patio with old school fans blowing warm air on us on a 95 degree Texas summer afternoon. And worse than that is we were about to be served some chips and salsa.

Have you ever eaten spicy food when your body is already hot AF, and there’s sweat trickling down your back?

Nonetheless, it was my daughter’s rehearsal dinner, and I had zero right to complain. And that’s why I kept all of this to myself and…

Rick Martinez

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