My Freedom Flame

Motivating Writers Worldwide

Tag: creativity

Strange, Vivid Dreams, Part II: One Wild Dream

My Vivid Imagination, C’est la Vie

I woke up at seven-thirty this morning and not because it’s Labor Day. Instead, I was up until one-thirty-two o’clock last night fetching some blog ideas. Little did I know today’s topic would find me while I was sleeping.

That was one wild dream. Wow. I remember many details, so I’ll give you a rundown here. I post these at times because I’ve always believed some of our greatest writing ideas come during our subconscious hours.


Blasts from the Past and Weird Stuff

Okay, so when I state blasts from the past, I’m not fooling around. There were tens of them. Here’s a rundown:

1. Between 2013 and 2015 I texted about a dozen girls (no real relationships lol) and my favorite one from that time and I texted about power metal. Weird.

2. Once upon a time, my primary gig focused on personal training over writing. This has since changed, but what didn’t change in this dream were the faces. In fact, there were faces present from every single place I’d ever trained clients in.

3. My singer crush and I hit it off well (Dianne van Giersbergen, hence the power metal convo). Why she was here I have zero idea.

4. This gym I trained clients was in a freaking skyscraper and let me tell you, their locker rooms were top-notch. And the group training area…whew!

5. One of my least favorite bosses ran the place, but for me it somehow wasn’t an issue as he was never present except for a few seconds.

6. The Browns were playing the Buccaneers on the big screen, it was Week Three of the 2018 season (they don’t even play Tampa Week Three). Anyway, they went the first two weeks of the season without scoring a touchdown and Duke Johnson finally broke the barrier.

7. There was a strange locker room party, which is just flat out weird.

If you’re still reading this, you may be a little too interested in my weird, random dreams. I woke up and checked my phone for the time (what are alarm clocks, these days?) before remembering what the heck it was I’d just dreamed about and why.
As for the why, I still have zero clue.

All I’ll say is I must be staying up too late and these eleven in the evening gym sessions might have something to do with it, as I wrote a post about a string of strange, vivid dreams a couple weeks back.


Book Motivation

I don’t know about book motivation, but strange, vivid dreams might provide some decent motivation for your next blog post. I know it’s a strange place to garner ideas, but you may take an element or two, or base a character on someone involved.

Not just that, if you’re interested in submitting some work to literary journals or sites that buy short stories, they may serve as inspiration, too. Obviously, not every dream, but here are a few of my own that might make their way into a story.

1. A relative’s house is raided by burglars overnight at a massive family get-together while everyone was asleep. I was the only one who woke up (in the dream) and heard the commotion.

2. My neighborhood is standing on the site of a chemical plant explosion from the 1980’s that killed everyone in the plant (not in real life, at least to my knowledge!).

3. I’m sneaking into a house in the dead of night (and sometimes this occurs in the daytime) and am racing against the clock before either someone inside catches me or the homeowners make it home. This one’s a thriller.

4. I’m falsely accused of committing a crime and am on the run from the feds.

5. Something like a gang war is taking place in my neighborhood and I’m running for my life. Talk about your heart pounding when you wake up.

6. Either my house (or a friend’s house) has changed into a three-story, old mansion and is haunted by demons. For some odd reason, it’s either my room if it’s my house or I find my way into the room if it’s their house.

7. I’m ghost hunting in a huge house which always contains a long hallway.

8. A more light-hearted one, but I’m watching the Browns play in the AFC Championship Game (like that’ll ever happen).

9. I’m in a store that’s about to close permanently. The shelves are half-full, and people are fighting over snagging the remaining items as if it’s one giant Black Friday sale.

10. This real strange dream where I’m near the bridge taking one from Steubenville, Ohio into Weirton, West Virginia, but traffic has multiplied one-hundred-fold and there are these tunnels resembling ones leading into Pittsburgh to take you across the bridge. On the West Virginia side, Weirton has become a minor metropolis while the Ohio side is a barren wasteland.


Speaking of Number Ten

This one strikes me as very, very interesting. Weirton and Steubenville, a little background on the two cities, lost more population percentage-wise than any other “metro” area in the United States from the 1970’s until the early 2000’s.

The two cities and the whole area became one of the most depressed in the country during this time and it continued into the early 2010’s.

During this time period, I knew many students attending Franciscan University of Steubenville, one of the most popular Catholic Universities in the world. So popular, two members of Luxembourg’s Royal Family attended the university in the early 2010’s.

Well, today, in 2018, the two cities couldn’t be moving in more opposite directions.


Starting in the early 2010’s, Weirton sought to develop and turn away from its checkered past. Steubenville, on the other hand, despite my friendly words in a recent article has fallen into deeper economic despair (unless one’s uptown, and it’s like another world).

In the past year alone, Weirton has embarked on a project, garnering new developments in different locations throughout the city and are in the beginning stages of tearing down the old steel mill, which has sat crumbling in the heart of downtown for quite some time. Throughout late-2017 and 2018, two-dozen new businesses sprung up, with more on the way. Weirton lost the old K-Mart, but who isn’t these days?

As for Steubenville, the Fort Steuben Mall’s about had it, filled to about twenty-five-percent capacity. Business after business are leaving, some having been in the area for generations. The steel mill will never come back, as Weirton realized. Unemployment is high, poverty has followed, and old paintings from a roaring time now lost to history provide the only evidence the city once had a treasured history.

More on the two cities later, but I wanted to get across the one recurring dream that really jumped out at me because, well, it relates more to real life than anything listed above.


Get Motivated to Pursue Passion

Get Motivated, Your Passion is Waiting

A few weeks ago, I wrote an article depicting one of my favorite local stores closing down and while greed, monopoly, and bureaucracy is certainly a cause, I have a passionate message for all the store’s employees and that’s to get motivated.


Let me repeat.

Get motivated.

The grocery store chain located in the spot previously saw many former store employees go on to work at the new store, the current chain, soon to close. This occurred in 2004.
I worked at the location from August 2011 to September 2012 and was fortunate enough to meet with and talk to many employees of the former location.

Their blame?

Corporate greed.

And yes, corporate greed and corporatism in general plays a major, crony capitalist part in this game, but the beauty of it is the crony part…crony capitalism isn’t capitalism.

So, what is capitalism?




It all begins with an idea. Someone has an idea. It can be any idea, to use as a service to provide for people.

The purest form of capitalism is free trade.

Say I have a pen and you have one dollar. I want to buy something that costs one more dollar and you want to write something down by hand. So, we engage in an exchange. I’ll be better off with the collar and you’ll be better off with the pen.

Now, say I have this bright idea where I create this pen company, again, it’s hypothetical. My pens contain twice the amount of ink as a normal pen and it’s the same size. Therefore, my idea would then sell.

The difference between capitalism and corporatism is say if someone comes by with a better idea, even if I’ve become established, they can take control of the market with a better product. Therefore, for me to stay in business, I would have to improve my existing product.

Corporatism involves bought politicians, government-company collusion, the works. Therefore, someone with a better idea may not even have a chance to enter the market due to barriers to entry, costs of production, and other barriers.



Single-Source Income

For many, the single-source income stream is the road taken more often. In fact, how many of us operate on a single source of income?


I’d say at least ninety-percent.

You have a job, earning good income, and before you know it, your income source is gone, especially the way the economy fluctuates these days.

So, what do you do if that single source of income is gone?

What are you good at?

What are you passionate about?


Now is the best time to pursue your passion.


Why not?


What do you have to lose?

These questions are how My Freedom Flame’s political avenues coincide with passion pursuit. Motivation is key in this field.


Let’s say you are working, but man, you don’t want to be in your current gig.


But you need the job.


But you can’t freaking stand it.


Oh, what to do?

Are you working forty to fifty hours, head home, relax, and watch TV?

What do you do on weekends?

See, as brutal as this sounds, those relying on one source of income are missing an opportunity. When their place of work closes, goes out of business or lays off workers, they’re quick to point the fingers at management, ownership, or in this case, landlords.



Society Based on Hate

Society has become based on Hate. Unfortunately, hate grasps society by the throat and never lets go, funneling its way into Marxism, eventually.


Yep, Karl Marx was a man full of hate. Check out Five Crazy Facts About Karl Marx.

We’re trained at a young age, in public schools, to learn that our labor is exploited by the upper, political class. And in many ways, they may be right, but what they don’t tell us is the collusion between corporations and government, or political entrepreneurs, which differs from market entrepreneurs.

Instead, we’re taught that programs that contributed to the New Deal or LBJ’s Great Society will provide a comfortable living to all Americans, and the rich will be the ones taxed the most so they’ll be forced to give back to all those people they exploited once upon a time.

However, it’s based on hate, envy, and want. To the point to where people believe they’ll entitled to the products of another’s labor.

And the free market is blamed.

But in America, politicians bought by corporations who are overseeing programs to benefit said corporations while making laws that prop up barriers to entry in a field. It’s the opposite of free markets.

And it’s fueled on hate and envy.




Look, perhaps you’re in a precarious situation, and you need income. I’m not saying fast income, because anything worth having will involve a struggle, it’ll involve you doubling your work week hours and working for free for a time.


Isn’t passion worth it?

Yes, it’s the price of pursuing passion. It’s the price of realizing the idea of your dreams is manageable and your little obstacle in the road may be the blessing in disguise.

I’m telling you, right now, to stop the hate, stop the envy, stop the self-entitlement you’ve been trained in public schools and by media to act as the exploited victim.


Perhaps some of it is true in the case of political entrepreneurs who use government to gain traction, but the only ones who are exploited for their labor are ones who choose to get exploited.


You don’t have to make such a choice.

Those who’ve worked for one single source of income all their lives and suddenly the source of income is gone have made the choice, and taken the risk, of assuming the one source of income would always be there.

And nothing, not even the greatest things, last forever.

Never, ever, ever, assume that the job you have now, working to make a lot of money for someone else, to help them or a company that doesn’t even know your name, to pursue their dreams, will be there for you.

Chances are, they won’t.

And it’s not an incentive for hate, playing the victim, and using it as a crutch for envy.
It’s an opportunity for you to utilize your skills, pursue your passion, think outside the box, challenge mainstream thought, and think beyond the status-quo.

You can do this.

Maybe not today, tomorrow, or even this year, but you can do this.

Your solution to the obstacle bestowed upon you is to take action, take control, take ownership of your life, and build something most dare not dream of. So, stop complaining, stop anger, stop envy, get motivated.

I’d like to thank all of my readers for coming across My Freedom Flame, please come back soon.

Corporate Stockholm Syndrome

Cold Case on Working Fulfilling Careers

Creativity goes a long way.

In fact, creativity is the key to a successful future, which is why I love writing so much.
But, creativity is sucked out of us when we enter school. Here, non-compliance is punished, truth comes from authority, intelligence is reciting given material, accurate memory is rewarded, intellectual and social conformity is required.

Sounds like a prison to me.

In other words, creativity, for the most part, is squeezed out of us in government schools as we’re forced to adhere to a common curriculum where teachers are required to pass a certain number of students, or else the state brands them bad teachers, more on that in a later article.

Okay, back to the subject.

People, as I’ve mentioned several times before on My Freedom Flame will become “set for life” when they’re given a job with all the benefits, as if they’ve hit the lottery jackpot.
Only issue is they were just bribed out of pursuing something worthwhile, as many end up regretting later in life.


Wintersville, Ohio Stories

I love reminiscing to my Riesbecks days, because the place holds a primary example of what happens to those who may receive a dose of corporate Stockholm Syndrome.
A former boss of mine we’ll just call Lance, whose character will appear in my upcoming book, Comeback Kid, to be released in December, stated to me that he’d been with the company for thirty-one years and never once stopped.

Why were we talking about starting and stopping?

Ah, let’s just say I used to take my last half-hour each day to hang out in the store and unfortunately got caught and written up to corporate. Good days, good days.

So, of course, I did the math, the guy had been there since 1979.

I’m sure this is what he saw himself doing all along.

Hey, being the store manager at this place is a good job, no doubt, and it pays well, but again, can I see myself managing a grocery store?

Heck no.

Can you?

I’m guessing no, because if you’re reading this you’re likely a creative mind looking for ways to boost your creativity in favor of slaving away for a bribe all your life.


Why Corporate Stockholm Syndrome?

How do we get here?

I’ve spoken about public schools and gave you one of my many experiences regarding my observations in my short work life (I’m twenty-seven).

Well, when you’re in public school, or private school, I’m not letting them off the hook, you’re subject to the following:

1) Speak when spoken to.
2) Eat when permitted.
3) Walk in a straight, single-file line to and from classes (at least it’s the case in middle school).
4) School is a one-way street, so if you’re walking in the wrong direction, teachers will turn you around and force you the other way. No, seriously, this actually happened in my old high school.
5) And of course, never question the material being taught, or you’ll just get branded as being disruptive.
6) Be politically-correct at all-times, when much of the time, political-correctness may be more derogatory than actual terms if you’re going out of your way not to offend someone.
7) And even if the teacher’s wrong on any subject matter, they’re correct. Ooh, I’m not hot on that last one.


Beginning at A Young Age

So, this little episode of corporate Stockholm Syndrome begins…wait for it…with the state, as public schools are state-run institutions that rely on tax dollars, state and federal funding, and passing a certain curriculum with quotas of passing a number of students. Again, I’ll get to the numbers at a later date.

But, the purpose of this article is how creativity is forced out.

And it’s, quite frankly, it’s educating students in a uniformed way.

Sure, as I’ve stated in the past, there’s advanced placement, honors, and accelerated classes, but aren’t they just faster versions of basic classes?

Do students learn anything different, or is the class just a bit more challenging?

Being that certain units of certain subjects, plus a uniformed state exam, like the Ohio Graduation Test (OGT) must be passed, are teachers playing to the students’ strengths?

Are the students learning anything different?


A List of What I’ve Never Learned

Being a Libertarian, here’s a list of important philosophies and people I’ve never learned about in school:
1) Austrian Economics
2) Ludwig von Mises
3) Murray Rothbard
4) Lysander Spooner
5) F.A. Hayek
6) Frederic Bastiat
7) Third Political Parties, except I once had a teacher mention them in passing, stating we never speak of the candidates because they don’t have a chance in winning an election. Wonder why?
8) War of Northern Aggression, more commonly known as the Civil War.
9) The truth behind US foreign intervention
10) Dangers of the Patriot Act and mass surveillance
11) Nikola Tesla
12) Failed Syrian coups in the 1940’s and 50’s.
13) CIA human experimentation
14) How to begin an internet business

15) Adam Smith

16) FBI staging fake terror plots to gain recognition
There are others, but these fifteen jump out at me more than anything else. Imagine if we were taught these in school?

Imagine if we were taught both sides of one subject, so we can draw our own conclusions, other than being subject to psychological conditioning public schools put us, our parents, grandparents, and future generations under.

Talk of having creativity squashed out of you in favor of indoctrination. It doesn’t begin when we reach adulthood and we’re best off taking what we’re given.


It starts in public schools.


Pursue Your Passion

Shake of the Stockholm Syndrome of corporations, fueled by government schools. Shake off every little aspect of it.

Remember your first love back when you were a kid. Remember how elated, and how excited you were to write, or sing, or dance, or whatever you loved, and continue to love it. Continue to work toward it, and don’t succumb to modern-day slave masters like government and corporations.

Stand and fight. Fight the corruption, the indoctrination, and the slavery put forth by such institutions.

I’d like to thank all of my readers for coming across My Freedom Flame, and if you found my article helpful, please share this article with your friends. Together, we can find our passion once more, fight the uniformed, corrupt systems in government and in Corporate America.

Please, come back soon.

The Wild Life of the Writer

A writer’s life is wild. We’re a unique group who are masters at observing and making mental notes on people, places, and things we come into contact with. Nothing is exempt from our wrath of wishing to acquire knowledge that may serve as the basis of our next manuscript, essay, blog, or social media post.
Oh, the opportunities are endless, and for each manuscript I’m working on, the places, people, and interests I’ve gauged over time have a special place. For instance, in Uprising, a village resembling my hometown serves as my setting. My main characters are based off those who are closest to me, and my interests of contemporary fantasy-dystopia, with a dash of steampunk, make up the world.
Combine such observations and you have quite a story.
But, how do we get to where we are today? How do our minds work in a different pattern than mainstream society?
We have triggers that temporarily steal our minds. We see the interesting person in the grocery store, and they’re the only other person who exists. We may be captivated by certain scenery or skylines, and they’re etched in our mind forever. Or, we may have a vivid dream or recurring dreams about something, something our subconscious cannot deviate.
Or, better yet, people we meet at work may have such distinct personalities they become characters in our novels, for the better or for worse. I’ll tell you right now that once Uprising hits the book market several already burning bridges may collapse into the river, while we hope and pray others pick up the book and connect the dots.
Hey, if you’re an INFJ like myself, you’ll hide hidden messages within a novel. Too shy to talk to a girl you like? Ah, make a character resembling her to a T in a manuscript, get it published, hope she reads it and connects the dots, and pray it fascinates her.
Hey, we INFJ’s, and writers in general, are dreamers, correct?
Of course, we’re dreamers. We write about our desires, perhaps daily. We write about what’s important to us. We know what we want, and we want to go out and get it, and sometimes we do, but we’re going to write, write, write, and visualize the perfect, or not so perfect, scenario perhaps before taking action.
Or, if something didn’t go the way we initially planned, we’ll write about our melancholy on such subjects. Girl you like ends up seeing another dude and thinks of you as some weird creeper, yeah okay, that stings.
Or, if you’re anything like me and love dystopia, you’ll be getting some awesome inspiration from conspiracies and secret societies forever gripping the Earth in its iron claw.
Yes, the life of a writer is a strange one to the point our TV loving families can’t grasp the idea of creating our own plots out of thin air when we have these awesome motion picture devices in our own living room making such plots and entertainment for us.
We’re the creators, thinkers, dreamers, and innovators. We love to make our own and we have an entrepreneurial frame of mind. We may be influenced by books, TV, movies, and other influences, take out what we aren’t fans of, keep what we like, insert our own creations, and launch such creations and hope people love them. Sure, we’ll get good and bad reviews, but we just want someone to read our work and spread the message that holds true to us.
Keep writing, my friends.

Because You’re Worth It

Because you’re worth more is why you must go after your true passion in life. You’re worth more than the bribe given to you by big business. You’re worth more than representing or wearing a brand someone else created. You’re worth more than following someone else’s orders and making a small profit while fulfilling their dreams so they can live a life of luxury.
You were worth more the second you were brought into the world. You’re worth more than following the accepted status quo of finding a job, making a living, receiving benefits, paying taxes, retiring, and dying. You’re worth more because as writers, or anyone looking to make a difference, a major difference, in the world, you realize from a young age you have a purpose to let your voice be heard from sea to sea.
Unfortunately, most people, and we know a lot of people who think this way, buy into the perceived status-quo they need to find a job, make a living, put money back for retirement, pay taxes, and die.
Yet, we realize the importance of making an impact not directly toward others, but toward the world. We live in an imperfect society, and even if our views differ from one another, we know our voices need to be heard. Some of us write, others make videos, others travel and spread their message. At the end of the day, we’re all spreading a valuable message.
But, we’re tricked. We’re tricked into believing we must succumb to someone else’s wishes and make a penny or two while they make a bit more, their supervisors more, their supervisors even more.
And I don’t like the above logic.
When we’re thrown benefits for healthcare (a form of dependency), social security (will it even be there when Generation Y reaches retirement age?), and a retirement plan at the company’s expense (another form of dependency), we take the money and run.
Usually, it’s because mom and dad tell us to.
Mom and dad don’t have a clue what they’re talking about, because they fell into this status-quo because they were taught so. But our generation, the artists, the writers, the poets, the broadcasters, have said enough, it’s time we’ve forged our own path and are finished with this socialized bandwagon Generation X and their ancestors were subject.
Isn’t this why we do what we do?
And it’s beautiful.
And you’re worth it, because the key to unlocking peace of mind is to begin by forging your path, shaping your destiny. So, while your high school, college, or even co-working friends continue to fall for the status-quo, keep doing what you’re doing and don’t worry about what they think.
Don’t worry about the haters, or what others say about you. This is your life, not theirs, and if they want to judge you for it, so mote it be. You have the right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, and you also have the right to overlook the status-quo most of the country is trained into following.
You need not become a follower, because you’ve already taken the first steps in becoming a leader. Financially, and job security-wise, you may currently be behind those you know, but don’t allow it to discourage you. The sickest wolves travel ahead of the wolfpack, but the pack’s leader brings up the rear.
You’re a leader, and even if you’re behind, remember you’re going to find yourself on top.

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