Giving Back To The Creative Community

Once or twice a week I’d like to take the time to promote someone with a small business, someone promoting a book release (I have to have read an ARC AND know you well enough to be able to back the material.) they aren’t allowed to tour for, someone who is crafty as hell and shipping items out as part of his or her normal, every day, work from home process. Each business will, ostensibly, be from different fields, but there might be some overlap here and there. I hope that this will help people, like me, who aren’t living on a guaranteed salary. Times are tough and I want to support as many people as possible. Lord knows most people are shopping online right now anyway, so why not support people who are talented instead of forking money over to Target or another big box store? Small businesses NEED your support now more than ever.

If you know anyone you’d like to see featured or you’ve got a side gig I know nothing about, please send a direct message to me on Instagram: Original Poison In Lethal Doses


Or you can leave detailed information by commenting on this post. I already have a few people in mind and will begin this process ASAP.

© 2020 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED,


It’s Okay To Disagree With The Thoughts

“It’s okay to disagree with the thoughts or opinions expressed by other people. That doesn’t give you the right to deny any sense they might make. Nor does it give you a right to accuse someone of poorly expressing their beliefs just because you don’t like what they are saying. Learn to recognize good writing when you read it, even if it means overcoming your pride and opening your mind beyond what is comfortable.”
Ashly Lorenzana

Lethal Poison And The Scorpion


The title sounds slightly gruesome (I’m a writer who, up until a few weeks ago, was researching serial killers. Leave me alone, okay? LOL.), but it is merely a reference for people who’ve known me my entire career, or at the very least, a good enough chunk of it, and know what to expect from me.

It seems like only yesterday when I was first given the idea to write something immensely simple. After that, it was as if I’d been plugged in to something unique and special, and I certainly was. Back then, I didn’t know what it was precisely, or where it would lead, but the path less traveled has been both good, and not so good, to me.

A lot of people ask themselves “When do I get to call myself a writer?” or “When am I officially a writer?” First and foremost; there are many different types of writers. Some people write music, poetry, movie scripts. Some write books, plays, or simply share their thoughts in a creative way. When you do it and can’t stop doing it because you are driven by a genuine need to share your thoughts and acquire feedback, good or bad, then you, my friend, are a writer.

Don’t get me wrong, though. It’s important not to twist things; plenty of people “write” and aren’t true writers. It’s a fact. Many are published authors who I will not call out by name, but nevertheless, they’ve hit a lucky strike at the end of a rainbow because there is zero talent to what they’re doing. It’s published gibberish that would make any true writer cringe. I spend more days cringing when work is submitted to me for editing than I do enjoying the work of another writer. Sad, but true. Sometimes, no matter how strongly you guide someone, they simply cannot be a gifted storyteller. There’s no shame in that. I believe it is inherently within a person, or not. It is not something I will ever feel is taught.

Some people come at you, as a “writer”, from a different angle. Satire, humor, playfulness, honesty, anger. The list is never-ending. Choose an emotion and/or a genre and I assure you; someone, somewhere, is writing about it.

I’m told we all have our “gifts”, our niche, in life, and that it is through exploration and exploration alone that we stumble upon said gifts. But there are many people who are lucky; achieving a measure of success through connections, as opposed to genuine talent. Then there are those who are born with immense gifts they’re simply waiting to share with the world, gifts they are, too often, not aware of.

If my gift with the written and spoken word had not been encouraged, supported, applauded, then I might be doing something boring at this very moment; something I loathe with every fiber of my being.

I know far too many people who’ve been in the same job for twenty, thirty, or forty years and absolutely HATE what they do. I have my moments. I’ve never hesitated to discuss them openly and honestly, but my gift? No, I don’t regret it; not any of them.

I’ve spent the majority of my life being put down, shunned, laughed at, and/or insulted for being creatively talented, as opposed to a “follow the rules” type. I would rather live an authentic life, as opposed to one chosen for me by others. I would rather pick and choose my wealth of knowledge, as opposed to doing what is “expected”. That is precisely how one masters the art of being gifted with a talent.

I speak the way I write. I live the way I write. It’s one of the reasons people like and respect me. It’s one of the reasons I get feedback that doesn’t require anyone kissing my ass telling me how great I am. I don’t walk around trying to be anything I am not. In turn, I feel it helps the words be more clear for others. Because it’s honest; it’s easy to relate. I’ve had many people tell me when they could not relate to something I wrote or said, but they still respected the hell out of me for putting my thoughts out into the universe so boldly. I never looked at it the way they did, not until receiving that level of feedback. I was simply writing, and they were reading with their senses fully engaged. I call that mutual respect.

Several years ago I started shutting down certain aspects of myself that I was told were “wrong” or “needed work”. It turns out the people whispering lies in my ears were wrong. Very wrong. The only time I need to work on something is when I choose to work on it, and only then. I am fully entitled to my feelings, thoughts, unique point of view, and even more entitled to live my truth. It is more important to me to tell the true stories than it is for me to pretend.

Whispering lies to someone is a form of manipulative abuse. It’s a way of telling someone they’re not good enough in YOUR eyes, usually because YOU don’t like certain attributes they possess. Often because it makes you uncomfortable, or because you’re jealous you don’t possess the same level of strength. I’ve had people tell me they could NEVER be the kind of friend I am to others, and then turn around and tell me my friends wouldn’t love me if they had to live with me. That came from a former best friend, and it came from a place of jealousy because she couldn’t even be a solid best friend to ONE person, leave alone multiple people. She did not understand how crucial being a good friend is to the core of who I am, and so, a friendship I thought would always be present is a friendship no longer. Her choice. Her immense loss.

Most people don’t think I’m funny, which is perfectly okay. My friends and my brother find me HILARIOUS, and that’s because they get me. I don’t care if other people lack the ability to grasp my humor, because those that do are invaluable to me. Criticizing my sense of humor is only going to make me laugh at you, it isn’t going to poison my mind against my wacky, twisted humor. I have to live with me. I have to look in the mirror and be able to face that person day in and day out.

I wasn’t raised to worry about being liked or loved by others. I’m secure enough in myself to not need the approval of everyone around me. Sure, at least once a day it would be nice to not be insulted or told I’m wrong, or be accused of things I’ve never even thought of, leave alone committed, but that’s not MY issue and I’m not going to carry it with me any longer. I do, however, have to be true to myself.

So, Lethal Poison is back in business. This Scorpion may glow, but she’s not afraid to sting, either. You decide which side you’d like to be on. I’ll keep speaking the truth.

Vi veri universum vivus vic~ “By the power of truth, I, while living, have conquered the universe.”

copyright © 2017 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


10 Things People Say


One of the best things I’ve ever heard (and I mean this in a truly sarcastic way) is “I’ve been out of work for eight years, so I taught myself how to write.” Really? For the record: I was taught better English and sentence structure in nursery school than this person has at 45, which just plain scares me.

Anyone has the ability to put words on paper or words on a computer screen. That’s a simple fact. However, having the talent to tell a story is an entirely different thing.

Writing is writing, but publishing is a business. Some of the best things I’ve read are from self-published authors who, many years later, were able to get published traditionally. Some of the most amazing stories I’ve read were written by people who wrote for the sheer pleasure of writing and never got their story published. Hell, I’ve read 2000 word blog posts that were more intelligently written than a great many New York Times Best Sellers I’ve been tormented by. Chances are, you have too.

Don’t ever let anyone belittle your ideas OR your talent. A word of advice; don’t share your ideas or your work with anyone until it’s finished and always, ALWAYS make sure that your work is copyrighted before you share it. Many people will not hesitate to steal your ideas, re-package them on your own, and be on bookshelves before you’re finished with your final draft. This happens to people, so I cannot encourage other enough to keep things close to their heart if they place true value upon their work.

In Some Situations


In some situations, you are the problem. In others, you are the problem solver. In the last week, I have been both the problem and the problem solver, but I’m proud of myself because I found a way around the problems and managed to solve them without losing my cool, yelling, screaming, or “unleashing the beast”.

It’s no secret that I have a temper. Push me and I will push back so hard, you’ll be in another country before you know what hit you. Over the last few years, I’ve worked really hard to dial back the temper and be a less anger-based person. So far, so good.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m no angel and certain situations and people call for anger, but the day-to-day stuff does not. “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” couldn’t be a more true statement or wiser advice. However, there’s a time and a place for every thing.

This past week I’ve struggled with my health, with work, and with things in my personal life. I’m concerned about my health, but all I can do is pray for the best and handle things as they come my way. Work, by comparison, is uncomplicated. I find it interesting how very specific projects land in my lap, and they’re 100% in my wheelhouse. It just goes to show you that the right people find you at precisely the right time. I truly have no explanation for all the batshit crazy people, but that’s life. There’s no true rhyme or reason, it simply is what it is.


I’d like to thank all of the new followers that have come on board over the last few weeks. It’s so lovely to see readership grow in a positive way. 🙂 I also have to thank those of you following on Twitter. Feel free to follow and let me know what else you’d like to see here.

For now, all I can say with certainty is that stress and snow are causing me to not sleep well. Every night I have intentions of being in bed at 9:00 PM. Thus far, that’s just not working out and it’s driving me insane. Generally writers and insomnia go hand in hand, but because it screws up my days so badly, I am hoping this stops really soon. I’d rather write and edit all day as opposed to finally be hitting the pillow as the sun is rising. It’s not healthy and it’s disrupting so much that days just seem to blend into one another. I hope this coming weekend will be a breakthrough for me. Even if that breakthrough means I have to take a few sleeping pills to re-set my internal clock, I’m willing to do it. I simply cannot go on like this, it’s no way to live.

Work is going well. There is something wonderful about a writer that wants cohesiveness throughout their entire body of work and in turn, only wants to work with an editor that is honest, that pushes them to be better, and that truly knows their stuff. Working with an editor can be difficult if you’re unsure of yourself or you’ve heard only good things about your work prior to handing it over to a professional. It can be jarring for some people, and for others, it’s about revising, releasing, and moving forward. Detaching from your work is hard at times, but it’s the only way you grow as a writer.

I’m grateful to be booked up and to be sent projects I am highly knowledgeable about. I’ve taken way too many jobs where I didn’t know all the things I should have known about the subject matter, but because they were only critiques or proofs, I didn’t have to be, I just had to give my honest opinion and correct errors that had previously been missed. Editing is completely different. I’ve been very lucky to be sent things I know a lot about. Sometimes, especially in situations such as these, knowledge is power. Knowledge helps you make someone a better writer, a stronger storyteller. In turn, you come away feeling good about yourself too and then it’s not “just a job”.

Not everyone is a writer. Most people are born with the talent and the ability. It’s the creative voice and the creative mind unleashed. It’s not for everyone, and I think it’s important for people to realize that. I read plenty of manuscripts that make me cringe and many that make me smile. Okay, so the larger percentage makes me cringe, but you get my point.

Talent is what sets everyone apart. I may not be talented like five other women in the same room with me, but I know my skill-set very well and I’m not going to make myself small for anyone. I’m already short enough. 😉

Enjoy the rest of your week my lovely bunch of nuts.

copyright © 2015 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.