How To Write Quickly For Profit Or Uniquely For Big Bucks!

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Handwriting articles for content

Do you want to make money by writing articles?  If so, you may be curious how you make the most money.  Naturally you can find well-paying jobs writing content. There is another approach you can take which involves writing articles quickly. Doesn’t it make sense that the more articles you can write you can make more money?  Doing it faster is key. Fast doesn’t mean you can skimp on providing quality content.

So how do you do this? To be sure it doesn’t happen overnight.  The fact is if you are just getting started with freelance writing, it may take you a few weeks or even months to get into the “grove.”  Time itself will be a determining factor, as the more you write, the better you’ll be. At least you will as your writing improves.

Obviously if writing is one of your strengths, which is why you choose to do this in the first place, things may happen sooner than later. So there are some ideas to consider that may open the floodgates to your writing expertise. Perhaps the key to unleash your mind is…passion!

What are you passionate about? That may seem strange but think about it. How excited would you be writing an article on baby rattles or the latest weight loss craze? If your passion is art, or creating apps for the internet, chances are those other topics would be of little interest.

Are you getting the picture? Words will fly onto the paper, or your laptop screen, when you write on any topic you are excited about. Everything may not be your passion. Even if it’s exciting the same still applies. You may be passionate about Rugby, yet excited about most any sport that uses a ball.

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Wordprocessing your content for sale

So it should be obvious that you can write quality articles quickly by choosing projects that are topics you already know about.  This will significantly cut down on research time.  Do you enjoy woodworking or have a passion for pets?  Try finding writing jobs or write your own articles on those topics.

Write in a distraction free environment.  Is the internet a distraction?  Then temporarily disable it.  This will prevent you from surfing the internet when you should be writing. However if you’re using the Internet and writing while researching at the same time, discipline is crucial to accomplish your objective.

There are those who still find writing by longhand, on paper, more productive than with word processing on a computer. As long as your writing is legible and you like doing it that way go for it. Others write so fast that words become impossible to decipher and thoughts get lost.

Some find writers block a challenge. The absolute best way to defeat that is…just start writing. Yeah, it sounds silly but try it. Any words, even if they don’t make sense. You won’t get through a paragraph before words begin to flow on a topic. There’s a chance it won’t be what you started to write about, so save it for another opportunity.

All this is towards getting you geared up to write with speed, accuracy, on topics you are knowledgable, interested, excited, and maybe even passionate about.

Microsoft Words is a great tool for writers.  Your clients may provide you with a form to submit your articles on. You may have another writing program on your computer, but Microsoft Word is recommended.  That’s not to say pages on a Mac is not good. It’s just not a useable format for many programs. It can be changed to Word or a text format which will work. That’s just for those who have an Apple product.

Both Word and Pages have a nice spell check program, which you should rely on.  Instead of going back and fixing your errors right away, let the word processors do the work for you.  Once your article is completed, you can simply go back and change any errors. Be sure to proofread your article. Word processors are wonderful, just not foolproof!

Speaking of proofreading, if you are writing a series of articles, like 3 or more, you may want to write as many articles as possible and then proofread when you’re finished.  This may help to reduce writer’s block.  If you get “in the zone,” with writing, you may not want to stop.  Being in the “groove” writing a number of articles at a very fast rate of speed could be ideal.  However, stopping to proofread each article would definitely interrupt your flow. So just let it flow.

Here’s a clue. Many new writers assume the quickest way to write articles is rewriting articles they find online.  Or it could be any material written by someone else. Unless you’re proficient at rewriting content by others, in the beginning it’s probably not a good idea.

This is a gray area.  If you are writing articles for someone else, they are likely wanting unique articles.  If so, it is okay to use the internet to research, but not to copy an article.  Some clients may ask for article rewrites.  In this case, you are rewriting PLR (private label rights) articles, which the clients in question own themselves. You may want to check on the source of said articles just to be safe.

Never underestimate the power of quality content.  In fact, most clients will prefer quality content over content that can be produced in a rush. Fast isn’t always fresh, as there may be a tendency to repeat phrases and content from other work. Not a good idea.

There is nothing like originality, and when it’s great higher prices for that content can be charged. So writing faster is not always necessary. Writing great content is. You have the option of whipping out 500 words of snappy, quick content. Or, 500 words of unique, never before published content filled with killer information on the given topic. It’s the difference between a $10 article, and a $100 masterpiece. Your choice.

What Happens At A 15,953 Foot Altitude With 16 People?

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Jose Rivas Refuge on Volcano Cotopaxi 2017

One more Bucket List item, or sorta, removed. Since the Ecuadorian Volcano, Cotopaxi, is considered in an eruptive state, scaling to the top is still off limits. No, there is no actual eruption, at least in the sense of lava flowing from the top. No huge molten boulders flying Continue reading “What Happens At A 15,953 Foot Altitude With 16 People?”

Start Your Affiliate Marketing Journey With Me And Internet Jetset!

For 20 years I have looked for that “tool” to create extra income on the internet. Finally in 2004 I created a website, and one of the programs that had just come out was from Google called AdSense. In short, for those who may not know, this program was brand new, and it offered website owners the opportunity to allow Google to post what are known as pay-per-click (PPC) ads anywhere on the webpages the owner selected.

This was a brand new concept. The double intent for Google, was to create an amazing outlet for their Advertisers using the AdWords program. This program was aimed at advertisers selecting specific key words to capture potential buyers for products on the internet. The advertiser only paid Continue reading “Start Your Affiliate Marketing Journey With Me And Internet Jetset!”

So There It Goes Again!

Contactos Barbara JarrettLooking at the beauty of your face constantly brings a sensation impossible to describe with mere words. Seeing that sparkle in your eyes is intoxicating when it locks fully on to my gaze. Just as the wonder of it all crosses my mind, leaving me with no words I realize, so there it goes again.

What’s past is past and shall never again revive.
Every moment is new leaving behind something less than what it replaces. Instead of comparing with what is gone we need to grab what is here and now. Squeezing to render the very last drop of joy and bliss, so often followed by a kiss. Ahh…so there it goes again.

Shuffling through the sand on a beach, having lunch at a quaint restaurant, taking in the beauty of sun-tinted clouds creating one more celestial masterpiece, holding hands through it all. When did we get to this point, of knowing the extreme ecstasy of now? Wow…so there it goes again.

Far too deep for explanation, some things simply defy all attempts to apply words. Maybe that’s why those who try find constant frustration. Even to define a person is impossible as constant change is taking place. You have never been simple or easy to define and that’s as it should be. It’s the constant remolding of ourselves that creates what is, and there it goes again.

It can’t be called love, as that would attempt to define or limit this indescribable sensation. It is joy, excitement, pleasure, contentment, happiness, tenderness, gentleness, patience and more, all pulsating with their respective energy. A constant panorama presents itself that allows us to know it’s presence. Rarely do we catch it in the moment but we know, so there it goes again.

Here we are, fully enrolled in our sunset, where the colors seem more spectacular than before. There’s the sensation of oneness that grows stronger daily. The final release to grey becomes you, enhancing your beauty in ways beyond your ability to see. Approaching those moments longed for beyond decades, to give that final measure of completeness creates a radiance about you seen by all, especially me, and there it goes again.

What lies ahead is not shared, rather fully lived. The expectations of the past have turned to be those of anticipation. Excitement first soars then ebbs, then soars again as we know what comes, where change is now a known guest. Fighting against the unchangeable to absorb with gratitude what is. Witnessing enhancements by the heart, and there it goes again.

Knowing that each sunrise introduces a bare canvas to become a new creation to dissolve at sunset into dreams, spreading out to heavenly bodies lending more sparkle. Our time will come to join that energy, lending our light to those gazers below, dreaming great and romantic visions. Our spirit is everywhere, dismissing all limitations of space and time. A moment will come in the life of a searcher, and they too will say, so there it goes again.

Is The Question What To Write Or When To Write?

Many times I have seen posts from other writers that are just starting. A common question is, how to get started. An equally common reply is, just write. Content is not the issue as much as just getting in the habit.

Worry about a topic to write on is really not the issue, rather just doing it. Creating a shopping list, writing about the days activities, anything that you can think of no matter how silly or seemingly inappropriate for a writer.

For example, they still make pencils with erasers, yet a whole story could be written about how something that has been such a symbol of education, school, and writing, is slowly but surely being edged out by keyboards, digital communication and the delete button.

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What happens is once words start to appear, more begin to invade your mind. In no time at all as you give your thoughts free reign it can almost be like magic happens as the words flow forth. In some cases it could seem like a tsunami of words.

I have had both extremes where words would come, but I had to work to get to 500. On other days I have started and more than 3000 words later, I have been amazed at what was written. Having an environment free of distractions, which I do not, can be the seedbed of even greater results.

Being retired would seem to be an ideal scenario for writing. In my case, I start at 3:30 in the morning. After a cup of coffee, time is spent in meditation for about 30 minutes. The I sit down for another 30 minutes to just write. As 5:00 rolls around it’s out to walk 3 to 4 miles, then back to start getting things ready for breakfast with my wife and brother-in-law.

By 7:45-8:00 we are sitting down to eat. By 8:30-9:00 a short drive to drop off my wife where she is Principle of a small, private school. Then back home by 9:30-9:45. If there are no other errands then I am free to research and write until 12:50, at which time I leave to pick up my wife. The afternoon may be free or there could be Dr’s visits, trips to pick up something for the house, any number of the typical things that interrupt the flow of writing.

From that point on the atmosphere is full of phone calls, being in a small office together where we have both computers and the T.V., conversations about the day, people, all the normal activities which create distractions.

Some might think this is ideal in terms of how much time is available from 9:30 on. If that could be spent just writing it would be ideal. Loosing sight of all that goes into writing such as editing, book covers, creating a promo team, time spent blogging, study on writing videos, summits, conferences, reading, reviewing other writers, plus the interruptions life throws in your way all compete for that time.

This has been written in that 30 minutes from 4:30 to 5:00, but there is not time to review and edit the content. The positive part is this has completed writing 500 words in that short period of time.

The point is when there is determination to do it, what to write about is hardly ever the challenge. Sitting down and hitting the keys is!

What About The Carnival Shill vs. The Pied Piper?

While there may seem to be some similarities in comparing these two, it is easy to confuse the difference. Both are quite adept with their various abilities. One is all about deception while the other is equally adept in a different sense.

We see this same scenario played out on a daily basis in cultures and societies around the world. There are different names and faces, but it seems to be true that history repeats itself. The difficulty is many times it comes in disguise and not in your face.

By definition a shill is one who is an accomplice of a hawker, gambler, or swindler who acts as an enthusiastic customer to entice or encourage others that whatever they are promoting is safe.Ride 'Em, Cowboy Indian  (5)

Now let’s compare that to the infamous Pied Piper. Legend has it a city in Germany had an infestation of rats. Along comes a “rat catcher” who happens to play a type of flute. His multicolored dress was referred to as “pied.” So the name “pied piper” or a piper with multicolored dress stuck.

The story continues the Piper offered the mayor of the city removal of the rats for a sum that in it’s time was quite expensive. None the less the mayor agreed and the task was completed. Yet the mayor then reneged on his agreement, paying a paltry sum, also claiming that the Piper likely created the infestation in the first place.

The Piper swears revenge, which is supposedly carried out by using his flute on another occasion to lure all the children away from the village, never to be seen again.
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This story seems to have modern day implications. Major differences are the choice of instrument and dress. Who might the Piper be? One who is offering to do the seeming impossible task for what may be a fair recompense, and could be seen as a representative of the public.

The “Mayor” could only refer to one in political power, who first agrees to resolve a very difficult situation in the best interest of the public, only to renege on the agreed terms, exposing the public to an even graver danger.

Does this sound like anything going on at present, or that has been going on since time began? The story of the Pied Piper may be all fiction, but there is nearly always an element of truth. History does an incomplete job of fully documenting the true events, but there does seem to be some references to the day all the children left in the town chronicles, although no proof is ever provided.

The struggle for power that does not result in an outright war, is very much like this story. In the end all are losers. No amount of power creates a lasting peace or happiness, as there will always be the attempts to right the wrongs that so often accompany the rise to that power.

History has shown that no power endures forever, and generally implodes. Was the Pied Piper right in exacting his revenge? What did the Mayor accomplish in refusing to uphold his word? Did any proof exist of wrongdoing by the Piper?

Here is the age old accusation being cast about with no evidence, or in other words a lie. How many times have we seen this played out today? What damage will be done and who will pay the price?

Just as in the story, it is the public that always pays the price! Did the Mayor pay a price for his actions? Since there is no recorded indication or information to that end, it can be assumed he did not. Had the public tarred and feather him, running him out of their fair town, that might have made news. None such exists.

A whole generation of children gone. Since this supposedly took place in the year 1284, and the only reference was a depiction in a church window that was destroyed in 1660, there seem to be no reliable records. Is it simply one of those legends that contain just enough truth to be believable?

When compared to more current events during the last 100 years, there are many similarities, which I will leave to the imagination of you readers to ferret out. One that might create some interest is the historical facts behind the cause of WWI.

So who is the Shill, and the title of Pied Piper might by applied to whom today? I think I’m going to check my wardrobe for multicolored clothes…just in case.

Red And Ready Coffee Cherries Waiting For Harvest Hands!

Coffee cherries? Did it ever occur that not only does the humble coffee bean grow inside a bright, red cherry, but that cherry is also sweet? Well, maybe not quite as sweet as a Bing Cherry, or some of those great varieties we all know. But yeah, a coffee cherry is sweet.

If you were to put that cherry in your mouth it would not taste like coffee at all! In fact, the outer husk is sorta tough compared to the skin of a real cherry. But getting past the husk to the pulp of the cherry surrounding the coffee beans…yup. It’s sweet!Olmedo-homemade-bread

The coffee cherries are a beautiful bright red when they have matured and are ready to be harvested. Even though the cherries grow and mature all year round, in Ecuador, the harvest is traditionally just once a year.

Some countries actually have a small, second harvest called a “fly crop!” It is never as great or as big as the primary harvest. Depending on the rains and moisture in a given region, a second crop is always possible. Where rainfall is constant all year round in some regions, it’s normal to have a second short harvest, and coffee cherries seem to never end.

The path of least resistance is always the easiest way to go, and rarely the best. That works for water but not for harvesting coffee.  Many coffee farmers in Ecuador harvest the cherries all at once, stripping the branch, taking the green and yellow cherries along with the ripe red ones all at the same time. The coffee produced from this type of harvest is of a common variety know as “corriente” or just ordinary, that you would traditionally find in a grocery store already ground in a can or bag.

Once these mixed cherries are gathered, the normal custom is to lay them on any flat surface in the open air, to let them dry in the husk. Once dry, they are then taken to a processor to be depulped, and made ready for roasting. Since this coffee is

Coffee “blends” would be common for this type of coffee, where only a small amount of “premium” or select coffee is used if any, and the rest is made up of the more common variety.

This type of coffee is what has been offered in the U.S. for decades, and you never knew there was something better until Coffee Houses began to pop up all over the place specializing in the unblended, Arabica coffees, long considered gourmet or specialty coffee.

During the ‘70s, the U.S. nearly became a “tea drinking” country as the coffee consumption declined due to such poor quality being offered by major roasters. Today, major food chains, as well as roasters and wholesale food suppliers have been forced by consumer demand to improve their coffee offerings with great success. It is now possible to get a breakfast sandwich, a donut, or gas at the local convenience store, and get a decent cup of coffee too!

Saying that, the disclaimer has to be added that the preparation of the coffee at the local Convenience store, even the more popular Fast Food stops, is key to what goes in your cup. As good as ground coffee can be, the final step in brewing can make all the difference in what you end up sipping.

Vacuum pots have absolutely changed the longevity of how coffee can maintain it’s flavor. Whenever a pot of coffee is left on a warmer more than 20 minutes, the oils begin to break down which in turn gives the brew a bitter taste. There are many locations where this is still the practice, and the savvy customer will insist on a fresh pot.

The vacuum pot not only helps maintain the temperature of the coffee longer, the oils in the coffee are not submitted to a heat source, so the breakdown is eliminated compared to being left on a warmer.

You may not know that coffee in Ecuador is some of the best, qualifying in the last 10 years as “specialty coffee” based on International Coffee Judges from Coast Rica, the U.S. and Australia! But you won’t find it in the U.S. unless you bring it yourself.

Sadly, it is the “corriente” Ecuadorian coffee that has been used primarily as a filler or for blends. This is saying that what major roasters and importers have contracted Ecuadorian coffee for is…you guessed it. Anything but for specialty coffee. The common variety that offers nothing in terms of great. This is the coffee from Ecuador that makes it to the U.S., but you won’t hear anyone bragging about it as they would about “mountain grown” Colombian coffee.

So will there come a time when Specialty Coffee from Ecuador finally becomes an item commonly found in a roasters “green” inventory, as those from Colombia, Peru, Costa Rica or Honduras? Consumer demand is not likely to be the determining factor, compared to a consistent marketing effort.

Here is a fact. Red coffee cherries from Ecuador taste the best, when they have gone through that magical transition and become coffee in your cup.

 

Got coffee?

 

Is Bacon The Culprit Or A Hero’s Food?

Porkers get a bad rap. It’s just that simple. Since they are bottom feeders and will eat anything, and I do mean anything, it seems that we fail to recognize how many other foods we eat that consume similar things.

Not to loose my train of thought here, as this is about pork, and even more specific, bacon! Over the years some of my friends in real life have made their preference known for bacon. There have been a number of combinations never heard of, or copious amounts presented at one time for single consumption.

In the past I have been known to come up with some pretty strange combinations for sandwiches, thanks to Dagwood in the comic strip, Dagwood and Blondie by Chic Young. The combinations of his sandwiches were epic, and challenged anyone to try and copy.

Over the years I believe, across the country, there have been attempts both on purpose, and accidental. On some of the food programs I recall one in particular that travel the states to those areas famous for a particular type of sandwich, such as the Philly Cheese Steak among others.

Now to be sure, I don’t recall one that boasted of a predominance of bacon, but there may have been one and I just missed that episode. That would be a shame as i may have learned some new concoction with bacon.

Creativeness with my sandwiches is about the only area of food where there is much in the way of strange, or not so strange, combinations. It seems my advancing years have created some desire to get a little more daring on just what my stomach can take. A good example would be the habit of adding “ahi” or a hot sauce to my food, which has never been my custom until recently. Now it’s not terribly hot, just enough to perk up the taste buds and give the food a little kick.

Nope, I haven’t forgotten the subject of this story, just getting warmed up. Oh, no pun intended but it’s a good one anyway.

Now bacon in Ecuador is not a lot different from what we’re used to in the good ole USA. It looks and is packaged a little differently, or not at all. Rarely is it bought for consumption outside of being added to other foods, almost like a garnish. I’m not at all sure Ecuadorians eat bacon sandwiches of any kind.

So the bacon is on display in the meat cases of the deli in the supermarkets, sliced and ready to sell. It fries up amazingly well in the microwave, once you get the hang of it. I got the hand of it pretty quick, and it comes out nice and crispy. I love the crunch when I bite into it with fried or scrambled eggs, maybe on toast with some ahi, a piece of hard cheese, why I’ve even been known to add a touch of jam!

In all honesty, on the occasion when i have spied something on face book that someone else has tried in terms of sandwich combinations with bacon, when it gets out there a bit I’m tempted to try. Sometimes yes, others no.

Coming to a conclusion has to finally include one of my favorite tried recently, and one that is sure to be repeated. Here are the players in this episode.

Yeast free whole wheat bread toasted and slathered with butter.
At least 6 slices of the best crispy bacon.
Peanut butter
Banana
Avocado
Chocolate shavings
Horseradish
Sweet n sour pickles
Slice of tomato
Lettuce

Alan-Eating-Bacon P-butter-Pinapple-Ameretto Jam
I got this one in my mouth just fine!

Now no matter what you might conclude, that is a tasty sandwich, WHEN I can get it all in my mouth for a bite at one time! And as I recall this was also the dilemma of Dagwood. There may be greater challenges in life, this one just happens to be tasty. Taste buds unite in favor of such adventures, or at least they seem to on my tongue!

Have to keep these cravings under control. Think I’ll go have some cashews and peanuts with my Merlot!

Is There A Time To Write And One That’s Not Right?

If you’re a writer there’s a chance you never find a moment that you can’t write something. The prompt suggests not just sitting behind the laptop cranking out pages. Instead some time to do other things like exercise, a hobby, an activity to distract attention for a time to come back fresh.

Fortunately for me I walk every morning for 3 miles in a woods located close towards the middle of the city. A huge tract of land with roads and a plethora of single track bike trails. For the most part the roads are cobblestone, with shoulders of compressed dirt and plenty of erosion on the shoulders from rain.

The single track is also great for trekking, and I have made a combo of the two. No here’s where I have to admit there is some method in my madness of walking the single track.

Each day there is a couple that arrives as early in the morning as I do. Darkness before the dawn, as timing usually finds the sunrise by the time of arrival at the return point. This couple serves as my “rabbit.” My goal is to either start before them, or catch them and pass them on the single track and beat them to the starting point.

Being a fast walker in the first place usually works in my favor. Rarely do they arrive before me, which spells success for me in my efforts to make it a good exercise.

There are days when the birds are singing up a chorus, and many when they are not. The frogs and other insects generally keep up their chorus no matter the weather. Still the birds are what I enjoy the most.

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Good morning Quito!

Next to that are the amazing sunrises, and the Moon when it’s in it’s movement across the night sky. Personally walking while the Moon creates a shadow before the sun makes it’s appearance is really cool. While those pitch dark mornings reveal a plethora of heavenly bodies, all are appreciated and cause me to enjoy changes from those mornings laced with clouds.

Looking on the valley from the lookout point some 500 feet below is always a sight to see. Most days are witness to either clouds, fog or a mist, attempting to hide the lights to the naked eye.

Some mornings are thick with clouds off on the horizon, hiding the major mountain peaks yet not those closer. Each day provides something new to enjoy, to those who even stop to appreciate what’s in from of their eyes.

As to writing, these scenes absolutely create images, especially when the morning sun tints those clouds, and for a few minutes you are witness to a real art show. Those are more than sufficient to create the need for expression in word. Attempts to describe those sights with words test the most proficient.

Those walks do as much to stimulate creativity as most other activities. Add that to an already fertile imagination and creative spirit, for interesting moments in writing.

What Really Defines Success Or Is It Just Money, Possessions And Fame?

A Story.

Axel was just a hard working guy. Education had not really been his strong suit as far as school was concerned. He was literate enough, but his real strength was reading. Books or the usual things one relates to reading, couldn’t hold a candle to Axel’s ability to read people.

Standing 5 ft. 10 inches tall, slender of build, muscular, weighing in at maybe 160 lbs., dark complected with traces of Latin or African American, penetrating eyes, a rugged completion lined with experience, skin very porous adding to that tough, masculine look. Hair cut almost to the scalp resembling a Brillo pad, clean shaven every other day.

First glance would make one think he might be sad, but only until he spoke. A million dollar smile which immediately transformed his face into the kind soul he is, caught all newcomers off guard. This is what kept them coming back.

He was an enigma. It is like the mystery of the moth that just can’t stay away from the flame. It keeps coming back until it is consumed.

As a leather craftsman Axel was very good. Perhaps not the best, yet in every way he was a true craftsman with his work and creations. One of his best customers had also become a friend. The opposite of Axel, in terms of social and financial position. Benjamin seemed to have it all.

The two became friends years ago when Benjamin was looking for a wall hanging made of leather for his father. He had been referred to Axel by a very satisfied customer. The resulting leather piece had not disappointed, and hangs in the patriarchal home to date.

A family of five, Axel has two daughters and a son. They have been raised on respect and love, knowing the difference between the value of material goods and that of relationships.

Benjamin has one son, who has wanted for nothing. Yet there is the typical strife of one who has known no boundaries, yet who’s behavior constantly demonstrates a crying our for limits.

Axel has noted for some time the stress and unhappiness in Benjamin’s eyes. Knowing the challenges with his son, he clearly understands the origin, yet also knows his boundaries with his friend.

Not certain what to do, Axel is inspired with an idea he believes will touch Ben’s heart with the truth, while staying within the limits of friendship.

All other work is put aside as Alex feverishly works on creating what may be his best work in leather. His passion to touch his friend in a way words couldn’t drives him. For days on end he is consumed with his project, setting aside all other work.

As Axel senses Ben is nearly at his wits end with his son, the project is finished. He invites Ben for a cup of coffee. While they have been friends for years, they have never met socially, so Ben is somewhat surprised at the request.

As they sit down at a table with their various brews, Ben notices the rather large package Axel has brought with him. Curious, Ben is more interested in the occasion than the package. He has no idea that Axel is up to anything.

On various occasions Ben has met Axel’s children at the shop, always impressed with the maturity, respect and love shown to their father. Jealousness has never been a part of their relation, yet a heavy heart for Ben as he has wished for a son that would be after his own heart.

As they sipped coffee and talked of superficial things, Ben finally sensed there was a reason for their meeting, and pressed Axel as to why.

Anxious for the moment, not a word was spoken as the package was handed to Ben. With some suspicion and surprise, Ben first searched his friends face for clues as to what might be in this package.

Carefully, he unwrapped the brown paper covering. The aroma of treated leather met his nostrils, as he took in the most amazing leather work he had ever seen. A message was hand tooled into a finely tanned work of art, set in a frame equally ornate yet appropriate.

Tears began to appear, as Ben read, then re-read the message. It was simple, yet full of all the meaning needed. It  said, “Love never fails! So now faith, hope and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”

The one thing that was missing in Ben’s life was now being clearly demonstrated by Axel. All the material possessions, position, things, could not give the one thing Ben didn’t even know was missing, until this exact moment. It was at this very point he realized what was the key to reaching not only his son, rather all those in his life.

While the story is fictional, the point is not. Success was measured in love, not in things. Are you successful?