What Makes an Effective Internal Communication?

email-3249062_1280When I’ve introduced myself to colleagues as the internal communications writer, I’ve often been told, “Sorry, I never read your emails.” And yet somehow, these same people showed up for the company events, signed up for their annual benefits package, and completed their required compliance trainings. That told me that my internal communications were still effective. Even if folks weren’t reading every word, they must have been able to glean key information from my content. Here’s what I believe made my emails effective.

Crystal clear email subjects – Knowing that sometimes this is all that people will read, I make sure my subject lines provide an exact brief summary of the message, making a particular point to highlight any required action and due date.

  • There’s Cake in the Breakroom!
  • Benefits Sign-up DUE TODAY
  • REMINDER: RSVP by Wednesday, Dec. 4 for the Holiday Party

Smart use of capitalization – While it’s not polite to shout everything in all caps, putting a few keywords in capital letters is helpful to draw attention, as shown in the examples above. Capitalization can also be helpful within the body of your email, to draw attention to headers, sub-headers, links, and bulleted lists.

In addition, you may decide to put capitalized tags in your subject lines, which people can use to organize their inboxes, such as SECURITY ALERT, INVITATION, ACTION REQUIRED, FOR APPROVAL, and so forth, followed by a colon and then any additional needed details.

Easy-to-find links – If you want people to click on a link or a button, it needs to be where they can find it. Don’t bury your links at the bottom of the page. They need to be high up and very obvious. I like to make my links imperative – Watch the Video, Click Here to RSVP, Sign Up Now, Download the App – so that people know exactly what I want them to do. You can also set links apart from the body text by leaving space before and after them and putting them in a larger font size.

Skimmable copy – Effective internal comms should be easy to understand, even if people don’t read every word. Knowing that people are reading fast, you should put key information in headlines, bullets, capitals, and bold so that people can pull those details out easily. Headers and sub-headers act like signposts to help people find the information that matters most to them.

Brevity – The shorter the message, the greater the likelihood that it will be more fully read and understood. That said, sensitive topics still need to be addressed carefully; you need to provide enough context to put people into the right frame of mind or mood. Be brief, but not blunt or rude. Also, try to keep paragraphs shorter, so that people can digest your message in smaller bites.

If you want to provide more in-depth information, or want to show a video message, put that content in a secure shared location, such as on a company intranet, and then link to it. This will help keep your file size down.

Focus on benefits – Sometimes, there’s no bright side to bad news, and it’s not good for morale to sugarcoat the truth. However, in most cases, focusing on the benefit to the employee (or reader) will help the message go down a lot easier.

For example, once I was asked to write an email explaining that alternate prizes were being offered because we ran out of rooms for the annual sales reward trip. Instead of focusing on the problem, I focused the message on the benefit – “For the first time ever, you can choose the reward that works best for you: the company trip, a separate trip for your whole family, or a cash bonus.” The response was completely positive and enough people chose the alternate prizes that we never had to turn anyone away from the company trip. 

FAQs – It helps to anticipate questions people will have, especially if your email is about a policy change. These can be added at the bottom of an email, or even attached in a separate document if they are lengthy. FAQs show people that you understand them and that you have nothing to hide. They also help forestall a flood of questions coming back at you or the department head.

Contact information – At the bottom of your communication, always have a designated person or inbox where people can send their questions and comments. Otherwise, you risk people asking the wrong person and getting the wrong answer.

Good design – Having a good-looking design for your internal communication helps support your company’s brand internally. It sets the tone of the email, giving it a more “official” feel than a plain personal email. In some cases, you may want to have different templates for various types of communications, which help people quickly understand the purpose of each message and who it is coming from. In every case, your email design needs to be simple so that it doesn’t take up too much storage space. You don’t want your email to be so full of bells and whistles that it takes forever to download or gets blocked by file size limits.

Editorial review – Finally, every internal communication that goes out on a companywide basis should be reviewed by a trusted editor. Even your best writer can become blind to mistakes when they are working in a rush or just having a bad day. And no matter how important a person is, whether they are the CEO or an intern, they lose credibility when they send out an email that contains errors. Over time, sloppy internal comms can make the company as a whole feel unprofessional, hurt morale, and even affect employee retention. Having a review process in place protects everyone from not only embarrassment but also from potential problems that a misunderstanding could cause.

Brand Loyalty, My Brother, and a Bridgestone Hat

Sometimes a logo is more than a decoration. 

Driving home from my brother’s funeral in 2015, we stopped at a gas station to fill up. While I was in the restroom, a tire salesman had approached my husband and pointed out that our tires needed replacing. Jeff was ready to buy from the man right there, but I stopped him. “What kind of tires is he selling?” I asked.

“I don’t know, I guess the sign says Cooper,” Jeff replied. I saw my reflection in the side mirror and knew that was the wrong kind of tires for us that day.

“I can’t buy Cooper tires wearing a Bridgestone hat,” I said. “We have to find a Bridgestone dealer. Let’s go.”

Bridgestone vignette

Me in my Bridgestone hat

So I got on my phone and found the next closest Bridgestone dealer, in Beaver, UT.
I called ahead to the dealer. (Imagine this call taking place on the highway, with the sound of the road in the background.) Here’s a summary of our conversation:

“Hello, Do you sell Bridgestone tires?”

“Yes ma’am we do.”

“Great. We will be there in about 30 minutes, because I’m wearing a Bridgestone hat, and I can’t buy Cooper tires wearing a Bridgestone hat.”

“That’s some brand loyalty you’ve got there.” He must’ve thought I was a crazy lady.

“Well, my brother was a Bridgestone sales rep, and we are driving home from his funeral. And this guy at the gas station said we need tires, but he only sells Cooper tires. And I’m not buying Cooper tires wearing one of my brother’s Bridgestone hats.” Now I’m a grieving crazy lady, but I’m making a little more sense.

“Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. We will be happy to help you. We are at the Shell station on the other side of the freeway.”

When we arrived it turned out that the dealer knew my brother! Randy had been their rep and had visited their store just a few weeks before he had passed away. In honor of my brother, the dealer sold us the tires at a discount, which was very kind. And he also shared his experiences meeting my brother and working with him, which really meant a lot to me. The mechanics at the shop also spoke warmly of Randy and shared their condolences.

If I hadn’t been wearing the hat, would I have still been loyal to Bridgestone? I’d like to think so. My brother had been proud to work for them, and they had been extremely kind to him and his family during his ordeal with cancer. Seriously, when my brother had a stroke during a sales trip in Arizona, Bridgestone flew his family there and sent someone to meet them at the airport and drive them to the hospital.

But because I was wearing that Bridgestone baseball cap, I had a visible reminder of a
relationship I needed to honor. And that “brand loyalty” led me to a real gift of an experience. I felt an additional bond with my brother, as well as with the company he had worked for. I felt like one last time, my big brother was taking care of me, through his connection to Bridgestone.

As someone who works in marketing, I know that a baseball cap is just a bulk-purchased giveaway, and that the logo on it is meant to create a brand impression, which I am perfectly capable of ignoring. But this hat reminded me of a company that had treated my brother and his family well, while my brother was dying of cancer. It was the company behind the logo that made the real impression. And that is where true brand loyalty comes from.

My Last Conversation with My Brother

My last photo with my bro

My last photo with my bro

A small mercy of cancer is it sometimes gives you time to say goodbye. My brother Randy Toone was told his cancer had become terminal a week ago, and last night he passed away, after fighting the good fight for several years. I’m proud of him and I’m going to miss him terribly.

Last Thursday I was able to have a really frank phone conversation with him. At first I asked him, “How are you?” which was stupid, because his annoyed answer was, “I’m dying!” So I joked with him about how he would haunt me. What song would he pick to remind me of him? Without hesitation he answered, “Reptiles and Samurai” (by Oingo Boingo). Yep, I have a strong feeling his sense of humor is going to shine through even across the veil of death.

But then I pushed ahead with, “What’s on your mind? How can I help?” And he told me some things I think he’d like his friends and family to know, and that perhaps even strangers could benefit from, so I’m sharing them here as his witness.

First, he said he’d been thinking about his Patriarchal Blessing, which is a personal priesthood blessing Mormons receive that reveals specific expectations and gifts God has for us. He said he realized he had completed everything he was told he would do. What a great thing to be able to say at the end of your life!

Second, he said he was thinking about his sins, and he shared that he felt he had been forgiven of them. Still, he had doubts that he had done well enough in his life and in his church work. Had he made an impact? I reassured him that he had. That like a pebble dropped in a pond, his life would have a ripple effect. All the people that he had influenced or taught would in turn influence others.

We agreed that he had lived his life in the right places, even though he missed California a lot when he lived in Illinois. (I confess I used to love calling him during snow storms and saying, “I just ate In-n-Out at the beach!” Hey, that’s what sisters do.) He was meant to be in Illinois with his wife and family and all the people he met there. And he was meant to bring his family to Utah last year, where he loved seeing the mountains and where people have been incredibly kind, though he was practically a stranger to them. It just felt very right to him.

We talked about the Book of Mormon allegory of the tame and wild olive trees, and how God may graft us into different places so we can grow and help others to grow as well.

He worried that his daughters wouldn’t know how proud of them he was. His exact words to them were, “In no way, shape or form am I disappointed in you, or ever could be.” (Trust me, I have 20 years of phone calls backing this fact up.) He wanted them to move forward with their educations, make new friends and have happy lives. He also said, “You’ll never find a husband in an anime club.”

He loved his wife tremendously. He loved her for her great heart, and he felt that God had inspired him to marry her.

He worried that he hadn’t provided well enough for his family, or managed his finances well. But I reassured him that everything would work out. And it will. He worked hard all his life and did the best he could, despite asthma, cancer and some just plain bad luck. And he ended up working for a great company (Bridgestone) that has been extremely supportive during his health trials these past few months.

I’m glad I had the opportunity to tell him I love him and I’m proud of him. Because when you boil it down to the end, that’s what we most want our dear ones to know, and what we want to hear from them. And he told me the same, that he thought I had a great husband, that my children were turning out well and that he respected how I was doing in my career.

I laughed and told him I thought my life was “for a wise purpose which I know not.” And he chuckled and said, “Yeah, mine too.” I was quoting from the Book of Mormon, where the prophet Nephi explains why he created 2 sets of records. But now, the greater comfort comes from the following verse: “But the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning; wherefore, he prepareth a way to accomplish all his works among the children of men; for behold, he hath all power unto the fulfilling of all his words. And thus it is. Amen.” (1 Nephi 9:5-6)

God’s plan may not seem clear to us now, but looking at my brother’s perspective at the end of his life, just knowing there IS a plan is enough.

Correct Phone Number Style for Corporate Websites and Email

These are my two preferred phone number styles.

These are my preferred phone number styles.

As a corporate copywriter and editor I’ve been grappling with this problem now for 10 years at 2 different companies: What should be our standard style for formatting phone numbers? Do we put the area code in parentheses? Do we use dashes, periods or spaces between groups of digits? Which style is the most mobile friendly? Which style is most recognizable internationally?

Don’t look at Apple for phone number style
So, as marketing creative types often do, I looked to the Apple website for an example of the best, most user-friendly design for phone numbers. And here is what I found on the U.S. Apple Contact Us page:

apple-contact-us

Notice how many ways phone numbers are presented, all on the same page? (Click the image to enlarge it and see.)

I’m seeing digits with dashes only; digits mixed with letters and dashes; parentheses, digits and letters; digits and periods; AND the old school style with area codes in parentheses with local digits separated by a hyphen. Also, sometimes they include 1 before the area code, and sometimes they don’t.

That’s 6 (SIX!) different phone number styles on the same page.

How could this happen? I can hazard a few guesses:

  • It’s a test – the Apple designers want to know which styles work best, so they are trying them ALL.
  • The person Apple assigned to maintain the page is cutting and pasting the numbers from multiple sources and not reformatting them to follow a unified style because they don’t know which style is right.
  • Multiple people are putting information on this page, and they are paying no attention to how the rest of the page looks.
  • Multiple people are putting information on this page, and they are refusing to conform to a uniform style because they each think their style is best.

I would think Apple would care about having a consistent phone number style on its website, so perhaps the current page really is just a test and is only temporary.

By the way, one consistent element of the phone numbers on the Apple Contact Us page was that I could click to dial them all on my iPhone. Good coding! (Can’t say I don’t give credit where it’s due.)

What is the best phone number style, then?

There doesn’t seem to be a consensus. The default (international) Google Contact Us page gives the +1 country code and then just has spaces between groups of digits. While this is a common international phone number style, it does require conscientious coding sometimes to make sure that the phone number is read as a unit.

My preference for U.S. phone numbers is to use dashes: 123-456-7890. This the style preferred by the Associated Press Stylebook. It ensures the number stays together as a unit, the number is able to wrap around of line if it has to, and the dashes make the number stand out well in running text.

Putting the area code in parentheses doesn’t make sense to me anymore, since area codes are so seldom optional now – many people keep their number when they move out of area, and some areas require the code even when you are in bounds. And parentheses mean “optional,” in my book.

As for phone numbers with periods and spaces, they don’t wrap well at line breaks. Granted, it’s best not to wrap phone numbers around lines if you can help it, but still, it happens.

However, for international phone numbers, I do prefer spaces: +1 123 456 7890. This is because, typically, on corporate sites international numbers often appear in a list, and there is so much variation in international phone number formats that you can never get all the hyphens or periods to line up. It can get looking really messy, like ants are dancing among all the digits on the page.

I’ve been trying to discover the optimum phone number style that smartphones will recognize (without coding), but I’m finding that there’s too much variation across different kinds of phones right now. When I sent phone numbers in the most common styles to myself in an email, I could click to call all of them from my iPhone, but my colleague tells me that phone numbers with periods aren’t always clickable on her iPhone. Meanwhile, my husband couldn’t click to call any of them on his current Android phone (though he could on his previous Android phone).

If you know an authoritative source for the best phone number style, please let me know. In fact, let the world know – and it wouldn’t hurt to drop a line to Apple while you’re at it.

5 Ways a Brand Is Like a Kazoo

Fuschia kazoo

(Photo courtesy of Michael Perekas, on Flickr. )

Last December, I knew if I took my family Christmas caroling we would embarrass ourselves. Aged 4 and 7, my kids would look adorable, but sound terrible. Plus, we’d only get half the words right. So I got kazoos for all of us to play when we dropped off our goody plates.

We were a hit! Yes, we sounded silly, but our friends and neighbors loved it.

The kazoos made us sound unified, unique and unexpected. And being a marketer, I realized that’s exactly what a brand should do, too. Here are 5 ways a brand is like a kazoo:

  1. Easy to use – Anyone can play a kazoo and sound like an expert kazoo player. Similarly, your brand should be easily understood both inside and outside of your company. If you can’t sum up your brand in a few sentences, you may have a tuba on your hands, and you aren’t going to get many people to sign up to play it.
  2. Requires instructions – Though anyone can play a kazoo, many people fail because they don’t know you have to make the sound yourself (it’s kind of like humming with your mouth open). By the same token, if you just give people a logo or a product with no brand guidelines, they aren’t going to present it in a consistent way, and your brand won’t really gel.
  3. Needs substance behind it – A kazoo is just a filter. The sound comes from you, when you hum. If you only blow into a kazoo, nothing happens. A brand is also just a filter; it’s useless if there isn’t a good product or good people behind it doing the work to please customers.
  4. The same for everyone – No matter who plays the kazoo or what country they play it in, the music they make sounds like it came from a kazoo. Even though the kazoo makes no sound of its own, it unifies all voices that come through it. Yes, you can and should localize your brand; but if people come across it in another country, they should still recognize it.
  5. Creates a consistent mood – Another interesting thing about the kazoo: any song you play on it is going to sound funny. To be true to that, we didn’t try to kazoo carol “Silent Night” or “Ave Maria.” Likewise, your brand has to fit the mood of your product or service – and it should elicit the same feeling every time people encounter it.

Does your brand pass the kazoo test?

Here’s an exercise to try: Bring a bag of kazoos to your next brand strategy session. Invite everyone to play a tune together. Then ask the group to discuss how your specific brand is like a kazoo. If it can’t meet the 5 requirements above, what should you be doing differently?

 

8 Tips for Becoming an Interesting Person

GameDay-photo

I’ve recently discovered that I, Gayle Turner, am an interesting person. It didn’t happen all at once – it kind of snuck up on me, until all of a sudden I realized that although my daily life is pretty low key, I have stories to tell that people enjoy. Where did they come from?

Try new things
You don’t have to be a thrill seeker to be interesting, but you do need a little sense of adventure or you won’t have any excitement in your life to talk about. Challenge yourself, even in small ways, and your confidence will grow.

My family took a road trip to visit my grandparents in Idaho nearly every summer of my youth. One year, to spice things up, my dad decided we would not eat at any chain restaurants during the whole trip. We found some great local places that became traditions for us. Another year, he mapped out a different route so we could have a change of scenery. It takes a little work to make life interesting, but it’s worth it. Thanks, Dad!

Learn a foreign language
It doesn’t matter which one. It will help you be a better thinker, reader, writer and crossword and trivia player. It will help you make interesting friends. You’ll enjoy more movies. You’ll get better grades and better jobs. Learn Spanish if you want to actually use your second language in your daily life.

I learned French, and I’ve been able to use it more than you’d expect – unlike anyone else on my street, I can talk to my neighbor’s French parents.

Live in a foreign country for at least a month
It doesn’t matter where you go; travel will help you see the world from another point of view. The more different the experience is from your home, the better. I lived 16 months in France and 3 months in Japan and from both experiences I learned a lot about how I wanted to treat people and how I wanted to be treated. (Both countries had great pastry and chocolate, too.) You’ll also end up with interesting travel stories to tell.

You have to really live there, though, and not just be a tourist. Tourists only see the show a country puts on for visitors. You need the time to get to know a few people, to see how their daily rhythm of life suits you. Pick up a few habits from the locals. Find a favorite restaurant or bakery. Learn what you miss most when you’re away from home. People love to hear about your insider knowledge and get tips for when they visit there.

Accept lunch invitations
It’s good to save money (and your waistline) by packing your own lunch, but don’t eat it if you get a better offer. Saying, “I brought my own,” means “I’d rather eat alone.” That’s no way to make friends or build your career network. You can eat your packed lunch tomorrow. Or, do like my friend who was in training did and bring your packed lunch to the restaurant. Don’t miss the opportunity to widen your social circle. Plus, lunch is a great time to (affordably) discover new places to eat, which people love to talk about.

Give treats away often—but not too often
People like treats, but they aren’t special if they’re available every day. Intermittent reinforcement keeps the birds coming back more than consistent reinforcement. I’m well-remembered for my flourless chocolate cake, and I only brought it to work four or five times in 10 years. A great recipe is always something good to talk about and share.

Celebrate your birthday
I hate it when people try to hide their age or their birthday. Every year of life is a gift to be grateful for. Your birthday is the one day a year that people let you be a little selfish and have fun. Why not enjoy it? Be king or queen for a day. Ask for special treatment, or at least a free dessert.

Treat yourself if no one else does—shoot, treat everyone and you’ll soon find people looking forward to your birthday as well. Oprah has the right idea—she gives away presents on her birthday and has a blast doing it.

On my 31st birthday I went to Baskins & Robbins and ordered one scoop of every flavor—they really did have 31 flavors! (We didn’t count sugar-free vanilla, though, or they’d have had 32.) It cost $50 but it was worth it just to see the look on the scooper’s face. We took the scoops home in little cups and my friends all got to take their pick—after I had first dibs, of course. We had a great time and made a great memory. And it gave me a great story to tell.

Listen to and remember other people’s stories
People love it when you remember their stories—they even like hearing you tell them back to them sometimes. If your life is dull, talk about other people’s lives. People will be impressed that you know interesting people, and think that you’re interesting as well.

This doesn’t mean gossip—it may be titillating, but it’s not interesting. Share stories of achievement, adventure and just plain oddity, but never maliciously. If you gossip, people will stop telling you their stories, and your life then really will be dull.

But first and foremost, listen. Don’t rush to share a parallel story; a conversation doesn’t have to be 50/50, and you definitely don’t want to be someone who is constantly one-upping others. That’s a quick ticket to boresville! Ask questions that show you are paying attention and that you care.

Most importantly, care
The most interesting people I know care deeply about things – first of all, about their family and friends, of course, but about lots of other things, too. Find a cause to support, take up a hobby or too, get involved in your community, go to church – do things that take you outside of your house, where you can be part of this beautiful, interesting world we live in and you’ll find it will rub off on you.

Why “Oops” Doesn’t Belong in Your Error Messages

Oops

Here’s an item from my personal style guide: avoid saying “oops” and “uh-oh” in business communications.

I especially dislike the use of “oops” in error messages and 404 “page not found” blurbs – in any automated message, really. I find pointing out an error by saying “oops” to be extremely condescending and potentially frustrating.  It’s something you say when a toddler falls down, not when a grown-up misses a keystroke . “Oops, the page you are looking for is not here” could be no big deal to some, but could really distress someone looking for important business information.

I think “oops” should be reserved for the rare occasions when it’s perfectly clear that A) YOU made the mistake and not your customer; B) the mistake is minor, rather than the cause of a serious issue; and C) the mistake is in the customer’s favor.

I remember years ago a pizza franchise commercial promoted it’s new thick crust menu item by saying, “Oops, I rolled the dough too thick!” and it made me smile. “Oops, we need to give you an extra month of free service” won’t draw complaints at all, while, “Oops, we forgot to bill you so now you’re getting a double charge” will for sure.

In most cases, I’d rather say “sorry” than “oops.” It shows accountability. Even if the error isn’t your fault, the customer feels better when you say sorry. It shows you wanted to help them, and regretted it when you couldn’t.

How to Wow an Audience Like Indiana Jones

hat and whip

When “Raiders of the Lost Ark” first hit theaters, my Uncle Bruce told me, “Eat your popcorn during the previews, because you’ll forget about it entirely once the movie starts.” He was right!

What if you could make your presentations as riveting as “Raiders of the Lost Ark?” While you can’t possibly do all the Hollywood magic the movie does, you could learn a lot from the skillful way it presents my favorite archaeologist/action hero, Dr. Indiana Jones.

  1. Show your best side first. We meet Indy in the middle of an adventure, not boring his students back at the University. Tell a great story at the beginning and people will be more willing to listen to background information later.
  2. Show a little weakness. One thing we learn early on about Jones is that he hates snakes. Seeing this small weakness helps us like him better. So keep it real. Plus, a little comic relief now and then keeps audiences engaged.
  3. Show a lot of strength. Indy may be afraid of snakes, but he’s got mad bullwhip skills. Narrow escape after narrow escape, he continuously amazes us with his mental and physical prowess. Don’t just make a big finish – impress your audience again and again with smart, useful information.
  4. Show where you’re going. Remember the red line on the map that appears whenever Jones is in transit? It keeps our attention when the scene changes. A good agenda works the same way and can help you make smoother transitions.
  5. Don’t show everything. The end of the movie leaves us wanting to know more: What’s the U.S. government going to do with the ark? What’s in all those other crates? Give your audience the chance to ask questions and they’ll remember your story long after the presentation is over.

(By the way, I originally wrote this article for the GoToWebinar newsletter in 2008. And Indiana Jones® is a registered trademark of Lucasfilm.)

photo credit:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/elbragon/5523423261/ via http://photopin.com http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Milanos: Double Chocolate or Nothing

I discovered Double Chocolate Milano cookies nearly 20 years ago, when I was working the night shift as a French long-distance operator. I needed a quick chocolate fix at my 3 AM break, but a candy bar seemed too rich. I kept a bag in my locker.

Flash forward to the present, and I’m still a fan. My husband keeps a stash hidden in the garage so he can have a bag ready whenever he wants to surprise me with a treat. (I pretend not to know where they are.) I also like to give them as gifts.

There’s just one problem: the current packaging for the regular dark chocolate Milanos is a lot like the double chocolate packaging. So sometimes my husband and I grab the wrong kind. What a disappointment!

The icon is a chunk of chocolate.

The icon is a chunk of chocolate.

Seriously, unless the chocolate is doubled, it’s like there’s no chocolate there at all. You might as well paint a brown stripe down the side.

The icon is slightly more chunks of chocolate. Whoa, big difference!

The icon is slightly more chunks of chocolate. Whoa, big difference!

So I propose Pepperidge Farm revise their Milano package design. For regular dark chocolate, no change. For double chocolate, add a purple “x2” icon on a gold burst.

Or, the could just add a gold label that says, “For Gayle.” Yeah, that would work just fine.

Why Yellow Kazoo

For a women’s social at church, I was asked to bring an object that said something about me in a brown paper bag. I brought a yellow kazoo.

Similarly, this blog is meant to help you get to know me – as a marketing writer, as a mom, as a Mormon and as a middle-ager. (Apparently, my life is brought to you by the letter M.)

I have opinions and stories to share – some funny, some serious – that might actually do someone good. And even if that someone is just me, well, that’s fine, too.