Chit Chatting with Actress Sarah Grey

Written by:  Jill Sheets

“Allison Taylor Creative”

Recently I had the honor of interviewing up and coming actress Sarah Grey.  This talented young actress is in the movie “Power Rangers,” which opens on March 24th. Continue to read on about her, what people may not know about her and her hidden talent.

R: Tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got into acting?

S: Well, I grew up on Vancouver Island B.C and initially wanted to be a singer! I didn’t really comprehend that acting could be a job when I was young, so it wasn’t on my radar. I fell into an acting class by a random series of events, and immediately fell in love with it. I have always had a strong curiosity for people. I think my love of performing and interest in people is the mix that got me hooked!


R:  Tell us about your TV movie “Story of a Girl” and about your character Caitlin Spinelli?

S: This film is based on Sara Zarr’s award winning novel “Story of a Girl”. It’s a powerful coming of age story, following the character “Deanna” who, at 16 is still dealing with the ramifications of a video with her and an older boy, that was leaked when she was only 13 years old. My character, Caitlin, is a popular cheerleader at school who takes pleasure in insulting Deanna, and receiving attention. Our director, Kyra Sedgwick, was absolutely lovely, as well as the rest of the cast. It was always good vibes on set! It made it challenging to play such a mean girl.


R: You are also in “Power Rangers” and “Last Night in Suburbia.”  Tell us the movies and your character.

S: “Last night in Suburbia” is an ensemble comedy about a group of friends spending their last fun night together, before they jet off to their various cities for College. All the while being followed around by a hilariously terrible undercover cop. I play “Hailey” who is dating “Spencer”.. another member of the friend group. They are kind of like the married couple of the group because they’ve been together since the beginning of highschool. They all get into a bunch of shenanigans but the movie can be quite touching and relatable at times. 

I also appear in “Power Rangers” which hits theatres this month (March 24th)! This film is based on the Power Rangers franchise that I think many of us have heard of/seen. I play the role of Amanda, another popular cheerleader type. ( I know it seems like a trend but I swear it’s just the two, laughs)


Picture source:  Allison Taylor Creative

R: What was it like being a Power Ranger? Did you have to do your own stunts? What was the hardest part when filming this movie?

S: It was fantastic being in Power Rangers. I was very excited because I would watch the T.V show with my sister when I was young (the odd time I actually woke up early on a school day). I didn’t have to worry about any major stunts. I think the hardest part was, again, having to be mean to the sweet Naomi Scott who plays the pink ranger. Playing a mean girl does not come naturally, which is a good thing I guess!


R: Our readers can also catch you on “Legends of Tomorrow.”  For those who have not seen then show yet, tell them a little bit about it and your character. 

S:”Legends of Tomorrow” is a DC Comic Series, that follows a team of time-travelling heroes and villains trying to prevent an apocalypse from happening. My character “Stargirl” shows up in season 2 with her “ Justice Society of America” squad. The two teams eventually start working together for the sake of good against evil. It is a blast to play a Superhero. The stunts were so much fun, and I can die happy now that I’ve flown- even if it was on wires. You can catch Stargirl in Episodes 1,2 and 12 of season 2.


R:  What are some of your future goals?

S: I’d love to travel for filming. Everything I’ve shot has been near or in Vancouver, which is nice and convenient, but I’d really like to see more of the world, and be earning an income while I’m at it! I’d also really like to be a lead on a T.V series. Writing for T.V is better than ever.


R: Do you have any hidden talents?

S: I can do the moonwalk.


R: What has been your favorite memory so far?

S: I have many favorite memories and inside jokes from filming “Last Night In Suburbia”. We would crack each other up constantly. Mackenzie Cardwell and I would improv rap songs on set. I’m still friends and keep in touch with many people from that cast.


R: Name five people you would like to work with.

S: Off the top of my head, Meryl Streep, Julianne Moore,  Charlize Theron, Gary Oldman, and Kevin Spacey.


R: Who has been your biggest influence?

S: I would have to go with my entire family. I can’t pick just one person! If it weren’t for them I don’t know if I’d be pursuing this career. They instilled in me the desire to follow my passion. I have an extremely inspiring, supportive family that has led by example.


R: What are five things people may not know about you?

S: I have an extreme love of hot sauce that is teetering on the line between delicious and dangerous. In elementary school, I could do a series of back walk overs that made me look like a slinky, so that’s what everyone started calling me, including teachers. Friends and their families still call me slinky to this day.  I play guitar and sing. I went on stage and did an impression of Cher for my moms 50th Birthday. I played Sandy in Grease in my first and only theatre production at the age of 13.


R: It is not easy being a teenager.  What advice would you give them in general?

S: Try to love yourself more and care less about what others think. Knowing who you are is overrated, people are constantly growing and changing anyway. Try new things, do more of what makes you happy, and believe in yourself! 


R: Other than this one, what is the strangest question you have ever been asked?

S: It must be this one because I don’t think I have one!


R: Are you on any social networking sites?  If so, which one and what are their addresses?  Do you have an official website and/or youtube page?

S: Yes! 

Instagram @ sarah_grey8

Twitter      @sarah_grey8


R: Is there anything else you would like to add or say to your fans?

S: Thank you for your support and love. I deeply appreciate it. 


R:  Sarah, thank you for the interview.  It was an honor.  Have a great day.

S: Thanks for having me! Xo

No More Fear: Nailing Your Future Career

Entering the adult world of jobs and responsibilities is scary. It’s overwhelming, and you’ve no idea where to begin. The most comforting thing to remember is that everyone’s been there, and it’s much easier to handle than you’re currently envisioning in your head. Everybody stumbles and feels their way around at first, but that’s all part of the learning curve.

Whether you’re studying at college and worrying about the future or you’ve just graduated and you’re wondering what on earth you’re supposed to do next, there’s no rush. It’s better to think carefully about the path you should take to the career of your dreams rather than simply grab the first thing which comes along. If that doesn’t help and you’ve still no idea where to begin, here are some tips that might help you nail that career of yours wherever it’s years in the future or something you want today.

Get all the experience you can.

There’s a horrible cycle in a lot of industries whereby people can only stand a chance of being hired if they have experience in that particular job role, but experience in that particular job role could only ever possibly be gained through being hired in the first place. In this brutal, competitive world of business, you’ve got to learn to dig deep and chase opportunities wherever they may be. Whilst you’re young and you have it all ahead of you, you should be chasing all manner of volunteering and work experience opportunities.

Working for free may not be an option for you in the future, but whilst you have no financial responsibilities and you’re struggling to get hired in jobs related to your dream industry, you should be taking up all the opportunities for a good dose of work experience that you can get. If you want to work in media, get a volunteering job in your local radio station; if you want to be a writer one day, apply for some administrative experience for your local newspaper. Whilst there may not be many jobs available for the inexperienced in your industry of choice, there are always roles available for a motivated, eager individual willing to work for free. That’s just the way the world works.

The application.

Your CV is crucial here. You’ve likely built up more experience than you realise over the years, and your qualifications are worth a whole lot to an employer who’s looking for fresh-faced graduates. This is all new to you, so you might want to start with a resume builder to help you put all your experience together in a coherent and employer-friendly format. There’s an art to painting your experience in a good light, even if you don’t think you have much. Helping family members when they were ill, volunteering at a local charity and working hard night after night on essay after essay to get your degree: these are all things which impress an employer. Don’t undersell yourself.

Don’t apply for any and every job.

As a young person who is panicking and just wants any job at all, it’s tempting to choose the first “okay” opportunity which comes along. Don’t do this. If you know which career you want to pursue, you need to work hard and pursue it. It may not happen at first, but nothing good in life every does. You need to dig deep or you might end up in a career you hate.

Interview with Mason Ashley

It’s been several dry months for me, musically wise.  I’m listening and absorbing, but there hasn’t been much interest in writing about any of it.  So, the second an email piques my interest, I’m all over it, quick, before I lose the motivation.  Fortunately, though, I love “Paper Planes” so much, I am as excited to share this with you now as I was three weeks ago when I first heard Mason.  Straight up great lyrics and lovely voice with no flash and no gimmicks because there isn’t any needed.  Seriously, it’s so refreshing.  And this interview hints at a sense of humor that made me smile; I am as eager to share her responses as I am to tell everyone about her music.  Read on. And then go listen. I’m sure you’ll feel the same.


Relate:  First memory of music:

Mason:  I grew up watching the VH1 Top 20 Video countdown every Saturday since I was really little. I used to dance around the living room and reenact music videos and sing along with every song my parents would play in the house. The first song I wrote was on a hotel notepad when I was seven years old about being late for school…. I was homeschooled at the time. 


R:  Name one song you wish you had written and why?

M:  “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright” by Bob Dylan is a song I always wish I’d written. It is the greatest break up song of all time in my opinion. It totally encapsulates the feelings at the end of a relationship. Each verse takes you through the different emotions; the “who cares” somewhat sarcastic attitude, the feeling of giving up, and the hint of sadness in the last verse. It’s genius. 


R:  Favorite song of yours that you have written and what makes it special to you?

M:  I think my favorite song I’ve written is the title track of my new EP, “Strangers”. That song title was in my phone notes for about two years and I just never found lyrics that lived up to the title until last summer. The song just kind of poured out of me and it has some of my favorite and most personal lines in it. It’s about a very complicated relationship I was in last year that taught me a lot about myself and how I deal with different situations. “Strangers” is special to me because it is the song I had always wanted to write and it ended up exactly the way I wanted it to in production. It captures the feeling of getting to know someone, losing them, and realizing maybe you never really knew them at all… and in the end you end up exactly how you started: strangers. 


R:  I’ve read that you have traveled a lot. How has meeting new people and seeing different places helped you become a better songwriter and musician?

M:  I always get very inspired when I travel. Something about seeing parts of the world I’ve never seen before for the first time makes me want to capture that feeling in lyrics. Meeting new people is the same kind of inspiration for me.. it’s a reminder of how unique everyone is and how everyone has their own story. 


R:  Have you ever been afraid to share a song and did you get over that fear?  If so, how?  And if not, do you think you will always have songs that you keep to yourself?

M:  When I first started writing, I was terrified to share any of my songs. When I started performing my songs, I would hide all my feelings in metaphors in my lyrics to make sure nobody knew how I was feeling. I had been writing a few years when I finally realized that all the songs by other artists that I loved were songs that told a brutally honest story. From then on, I felt confident being honest in my writing…it’s much easier.  


R:  What goal do you have for yourself that is so big that it frightens you?

M:  My biggest, most terrifying goal is probably to have my song in a movie. It is a dream of mine and if it happened, I think I would freak out. 


R:  Best advice that you have ever been given?

M:  Growing up in church with my pastor being my grandfather, I always have great advice. One of my favorite pieces of advice is actually something my grandpa said about God and how He is in everything in our lives, even the rough times. “He’s the designer of the storm. He doesn’t just get you through it… He is in it.” Those words always calm me down and remind me that there is a plan for my life better than I could ever design for myself. 


R:  When you aren’t singing or writing music, what do you like to do?

M:   I’m in cosmetology school right now so when I’m not doing something music related I’m normally doing someone’s hair. I’m a coffee-addict so I’m also usually found in a coffee shop after or before school. And I’ve also started doing a lot of yoga lately. 


R:  Tell us about something that has made you laugh in the last twenty-four hours.

M:  Well… I was watching The Office earlier (for the billionth time) and laughing with every episode I watched. 


R:  Name one song on your iPod that your friends would be surprised you own.

M:  I normally have pop, rap, or indie music playing when my friends are with me so I think they’d be most surprised at the amount of Jackson 5 songs I have on my phone.. They are probably my guilty pleasure band. 


R:  Just for fun-choose one:  Beach or the mountains?

M:  Beach BY the mountains. 


R:  T-shirts and jeans or sweaters and skirts?

M:   T-shirts and jeans.


R:  Taylor Swift or Beyonce?

M:  T-swizzle.


R:  Pizza or Cheeseburgers and fries?

M:   Pizza! (Barbecue chicken pizza specifically)


R:  Chocolate or potato chips?

M:  Chocolate chips all the way.


For more information about Mason, please visit:

Written by Ellen Marie Hawkins


Applying With Loaded Dice: Increasing Your Chances Of Getting That Job

Getting out there and finding your first step towards the career you’ve always wanted is a daunting thing. The jobs market is competitive right now, not to mention evolving with the importance that the online world can play in it nowadays. But you don’t have to just roll the dice like everyone else. Instead, spend a little more time loading those dice and improving your chances with the tips below.

Search every day

It can easy to treat the job search as a project that you whittle away at now and then. However, a better approach is to treat it like something of a job itself. Set yourself a schedule, get dressed and ‘ready’ for work, then spend some hours every day searching or improving your prospects. That might be through creating a LinkedIn profile, updating your CV, or reaching out to an employer. Work at it every day. Even if you’re on the go, there are plenty of apps that can make it a lot easier.

Meet more people

How you represent yourself is one thing, but how others can represent you can be even more helpful. The majority of employers will fast-track applicants who have received a referral from an existing employee or business partner, for instance. However, the right industry ties are important, too. Besides networking, using industry specific recruitment agencies like Portfolio Payroll can ensure that the jobs coming your way are relevant to the skills you want to provide.

Practice makes perfect

As well as spending plenty of time on searching for a job, you should start practicing how you’re actually going to represent yourself if you get an interview. The first impression matters. Ensure that you always have the appropriate attire for the meeting ready to go. Watch your body language and learn how to project yourself with confidence. It’s a good idea to even prepare some questions of your own in your head for when you’re asked for one.

Do your research

Choosing the best questions for the interview will largely depend on how much research you’ve done leading up to said interview. Businesses have needs and cultures of their own and the better you understand them, the better you can tailor your approach to fit those circumstances. It’s a good idea to give your CV the same treatment. Having different versions prepared for different employers might seem like extra work, but that extra work will be noticed and appreciated.

Make sure your public profile isn’t tripping you up

Just as the online world makes it easier to apply, to research, and to network, it also makes it easier to sabotage yourself. One of the most common ways that is done is through social media. If you’re not setting up the proper privacy settings, then any information you put up there could be available to potential employers. Have you considered what they might be looking at and what they might consider unprofessional?

Stay proactive and stay hopeful. Be willing to hop into a business at a lower position if it’s the industry you truly want to work in. Keep at it long enough and your perseverance will separate you from the rest of the dice-rollers out there.


Make Sure Your Ready For That First Interview With These Top Tips

Whether it’s school interviews, internships, colleges or even first jobs, we all face that first interview at some stage of our lives. It can feel quite an overwhelming prospect where you might feel tested beyond your ability or even worry about not doing so well. All of which are emotions that every one of us will face, even after our tenth, fiftieth or one-hundredth interview. Nervous energy is good, and of course, the adrenaline should kick in the moment you step through the door for the interview. But, there is a lot you can do before the main event, and I thought it was worth sharing with you some top tips to get you ready for your first interview.

Preparation is key

Who else agrees that when you are prepared for anything in life, you are calmer about what is ahead? It goes without saying that preparing yourself mentally for an interview process could stand you in good stead and even give you the edge against other candidates. You’ll know what the interview is about, be that a job or even a college place, so use this to your advantage and find out as much as you can before going. Research is key for feeling prepared and using the internet is bound to give you some golden nuggets of knowledge to help you through the interview itself. It’s also worth preparing yourself physically. By this, I mean getting to bed early the night before and eating some of the right food. Don’t do yourself an injustice by keeping yourself awake all night worrying. A great tip is to plan nothing the night before and do some of the things that help relax you or make you happy. That might be getting into a new book, taking a long soak in the bath, or enjoying a good movie.

Sort out the outfit

What you wear is vitally important as we all know that people can make a snap judgment in the first few seconds of meeting you. But don’t despair and keep things simple when it comes to choosing the perfect attire. Stick with something like Dickies Work Pants, a smart shirt and even a tie for the boys, and perhaps smart trousers or a skirt and a shirt for the girls. Of course, keep the skirt length to the knee or just above if you can.

Have confidence in your ability

Sometimes it’s worth investing a bit of time to how you feel and your confidence levels. After all, predicting you are not going to do well before it happens isn’t going to serve you too well during the interview process. Have confidence in your skills and ability.

Keep a positive attitude and approach

Finally, try and keep a positive attitude and approach to your interview. Negativity will only have a detrimental effect on your ability to communicate with the interviewer. It can be hard to combat those negative or self-critical thoughts, but try and turn what might be making you feel nervous into something much more productive and positive.

I hope these tips help you if you are about to embark on your first interview.

New Career: What Can You do to Get the Best Possible Job?

Looking for a new career path is always complicated, but sometimes a change is necessary. You have got to understand that there are many different career paths available. It’s just a case of making sure you take the time to find the right kind of job role for you. Now, there are a lot of things you can do that will help you choose the ideal and ultimate career for you. Think about what you can do to secure the best possible job for your future. This is something you have to get right, and it’s important to make sure you explore different avenues available.

Hunt Online

The optimum way to hunt for career opportunities these days is to hunt online. You have to ensure that you make sure of all the online resources you can. So many companies advertise vacancies and job roles online nowadays. So you need to make sure you keep your ear to the ground and catch the new jobs as they are advertised. You have to make sure you check out online job databases. There are lists of all the vacancies that have been advertised online that you can benefit from. Hunting online makes the process of job seeking a lot easier and much less stressful. So you have got to make full use of it wherever you possibly can.

Keep an Eye Out for the Prized Roles

The one thing you have to remember when applying for jobs is that the prized ones come along rarely. You have to understand that the coveted roles are difficult to come by, and you need to pay attention if you don’t want to miss the window. If you’re connected by a Top 10 executive recruiter, it’s a pretty good sign that you are looking at a pretty awesome job. So, you have to make sure you keep your eyes peeled and your ears to the ground. It’s important that you make sure you get in there quickly with the important jobs because they are going to be in high demand. The quicker you react, the more likely you are to give yourself the perfect chance of securing the big opportunities.

Smash the Interview

The one area of applying for jobs that is the most exciting but also nerve-wracking is the interview phase. This is the phase where you need to make sure you are at the top of your game as much as possible. The interview can be definitive and will make all the differences hen separating you from other candidates. If you can smash the interview stage, you will find that you are more likely to be offered the job. So you have to work on interview techniques and make sure you do as much as possible to make the best impression. This is the most important part of the process, so you have to make sure you do what you can to ace it at all times.

Consider Your Contract Carefully

When you are offered a business contract, you need to be careful with it. Before you sign, you have to make sure you consider the contract carefully. This is something that too many prospective employees ignore, and it can be to their detriment. You have to make sure to your contract includes everything you want it to. It’s important to be happy with it as much as possible before you actually sign. And the way to achieve this is to ask questions before you sign your new job contract. It’s something you have to ensure you are happy with before you proceed.


A new career path can be daunting, but it’s important to make sure you get the best job you possibly can. The way to achieve this is to make sure you are prepared for job hunting and using techniques to secure the best role you possibly can.


Applying To College? Ask Yourself These Questions Before You Get Started

College applications can be tough. Not only are you still trying to figure out exactly what you want to do, but you’re trying to get through school, make your grades, keep your parents happy, and enjoy life surrounded by your friends and family. It’s a lot of pressure to take on at once.

So, it might be a little easier to lighten your workload when it comes to making a choice on colleges to apply to. You may already have a college in your mind, from childhood dreams or your where your parents attended, and that’s okay. But if you’re really torn, here are a few questions that might help you to clear a few things up.

What Are Your Strengths?

If you’re at the point of applying to college, you probably already know where your strengths lie. You may not have consciously thought about them before, but after twelve or thirteen years in school, you will know more than you think you do. Say you’re good at math or your stronger grades are in English, then you’re starting to figure out your strengths. Maybe you’re great at field hockey, or you know you’re a good communicator. Once you know where your best qualities lie, you can start to think about a major in college.

Where Do You Feel Most Comfortable?

Next, you’re going to want to think about the kind of surroundings you like. You could be dreaming of bit cities and bright lights. If that’s the case, go and visit and see if you feel comfortable there. If it’s small town life that you’re after, then you’ll be able to find a smaller college or a school with a tight community that is right for you. Aside from the atmosphere, you might also want to think about the part of the country that you’d like to head to, whether you want to stay close to home or move further afield. And if you’re still stuck, a good old fashioned quiz might help.

What’s Most Important To You?

When you think about college, what stands out as the most important factor to you. Perhaps you’re dreaming of a place that has incredible school spirit? Or maybe it’s a certain subject focus that you’re after, or even a ranking in sports? You might even be thinking about other extra curricular areas or connections that the school has that can develop your life skills and prepare you for the working world. Whatever is it, make sure you identify it before you apply.

What’s Within Your Range

As much as you’d like it not to be, sometimes, your financial situation can determine what choice you make. If that’s the case for you, you might want to start looking into funding options as early as you can. You could consider school scholarships or even external sources like the Groza Learning Center option. Either way, if your final decision is based on affordability, get your financial choices lined up first and then make your shortlist.

Where Do You See Yourself In The Future

And finally, one of the most important factors for choosing a college will be where you see yourself in the future. If you have a dream career and one school has the best faculty and facilities for it, then you know where to apply. If you have a goal of research and you want the best research facilities in the country, then you’re starting to figure it all out. Overall, you’re going to want to choose a college that will help you get the career you want, so make sure that comes into your decision-making process, before all else.


Chit Chatting with Poet Nakada Wilson

pinkI recently had the honor of interviewing poet Nakada Wilson, author of the book Girl Poems. Read on to learn more about her, her book of poems, and her goals for the future.


R: Tell us about yourself and how you got started writing poetry.

N: I started writing poetry once I realized that lashing out and being disruptive was not only alienating, but an inadequate way to express my anger. Bottling up my emotions wasn’t healthy or helpful, so I started to use the journal my mom had given me. However, simply writing down my feelings felt tedious and dull. I put a spin on the writings and that resulted in metaphors and rhythmic sentence structures–poetry. Through words, I’m able to pinpoint why I’m feeling what I’m feeling in a moment, and see on paper what’s really going on in my mind. Putting pen to paper turns the chaos in my mind to order. I can relinquish the chaos through a controlled medium so that I don’t have to hurt anyone or myself.


R: Tell us about your book Girl Poems.

N: Girl Poems is about the essence of femininity through my eyes. Girl Poems is about accepting a role that leans towards conforming, but giving in because it’s accessible and because there are things to enjoy and take pleasure in, regardless of the simplicity. I chose a few poets to make contributions in Girl Poems as well, whom I felt clearly understood the message.


R: How did you come up with the idea for this book?

N: I titled the book before I filled its pages because I knew what I was going for. My poetry, as a whole, hasn’t much to do with girls, just aspects of the human condition in general. So, adhering to the “girl” theme in Girl Poems meant digging through an old notebook I had utilized in while living with five other girls in a dorm at school. At that time more than any other, I had been questioning gender roles and exploring what it meant to be a girl. I, like most people, am blended with both masculine and feminine aspects. In Girl Poems, I simply zeroed in on the feeling of what femininity meant to me.


R: Do you have a favorite poem?

N: It’s hard to pinpoint just one favorite poem, but one that stood out to me recently is Red by Fatimah Asghar. “You’ll feel tin in my bones and think you are making love to a copper woman.” That line really sticks with me.


R: For people who have not read the book yet, how would you describe your writing?

N: It’s difficult to describe my writing because it’s up to the readers to interpret the style. If I can be as objective as possible, though, I’d say it has dark undertones made indulgent by the use of flowery language.


R: Do you have any future goals on writing more books?

N: Absolutely. I plan on publishing a novel in the future. I write short stories often, and plan on either turning one of those into a novel, or starting up a completely new idea.


R: Where can people get your book?

N: Amazon


R: I read that you are also a director. Is that true? If so, what have you directed?

N: I wouldn’t quite call myself a director. I created a few shorts before I caught the acting bug when I moved to a big city last year. Who wouldn’t want to be a Hollywood director, though? That’d be awesome.


R: What has been your biggest influence?

N: My biggest influence on my writing stems from the music I listen to more than anything. Bands like Katatonia and Massive Attack are very poetic in their lyrics, and you can often find me listening to them while writing.


R: What are some of your future goals?

N: My dream is to get married and have a few kids. No, I’m joking. Seriously, I’d like to have the resources to create whatever unconventional idea I have in mind and see it play out on the screen.


R: What are five things people may not know about you?

N: I’m a metalhead, I prefer large dogs to small ones, I believe in ghosts, I find bruises and scars cooler than tattoos, and I enjoy spending time in the woods during autumn.


R: What advice would you give someone who wanted to become a poet?

N: Just start writing. Allow that filter of self-protectiveness to slide off in the moment and become one with yourself and whatever you’re feeling. Don’t worry about how it will come across, just be raw and indiscriminate towards your words. Only once you’ve finished and care to edit should you judge your structure or words.


R: Other than this one, what is the strangest question you have ever been asked?

N: I was at a rock show with my mom and sisters and while I was outside, this guy on the street came up to me and asked me if this children’s book he was holding belonged to me. I said yes but he kept it anyway, explaining that it was actually for his daughter.


R: Are you on any social networking sites?  If so, which ones and what are their addresses?  Do you have an official website and/or YouTube page?

N: I don’t have an official website, but I am on Instagram and Twitter as @NakadaWilson.


R: Is there anything else you would like to add?

N: Sure. Even though the book is titled Girl Poems, I think that regardless of gender, anyone feeling boxed in within a certain title will relate. While editing the poems, I infused even the darkest of poems with something to look forward to or feel good about. Life can be depressing, but it’s short and something of a gift. It’s important to find something enjoyable or pleasurable out of it. Finding beauty in the depth of darkness is magnetic and inspiring enough to bring anyone fully to light.


R: Nakada, thank you for the interview. It was an honor. Have a great day.


Written by Jill Sheets

5 Types of People You Will Meet When Job Searching

looking-for-a-jobLooking for work can be a long and complicated process. When you’re trying to find a job, you have to learn to deal with a range of people. There are many people you associate with when you’re applying for jobs, attending interviews or negotiating a contract. It’s important to know what meeting these people means and how to handle your interactions. If you know what to expect from them, you’ll be able to make the most of your meetings and conversations. While you’re conducting your job search, be prepared to deal with the following people and maximize your chances of securing a job you will love.

Recruitment Consultants

Recruitment consultants are tasked with the job of finding the right employees for a company. They act as the middleman between the employer and the employee. They use their expertise to look for people who might be suitable for the job. This might include looking at resumes and contacting people directly. It can also involve advertising a position and waiting for potential employees to come to them. There are some agencies you can sign up to so that they have your resume. They can match it up to any positions they might have on their books that could be suitable for you. If you sign up to an agency, it’s a good idea to try to build a relationship with them. Try to speak to someone in person or over the phone to improve your chances of getting an interview.

HR Personnel

Recruitment might also involve human resources professionals. Many employers will hire an HR consultancy to give them advice on their hires. This might mean dealing with these people when you’re looking for a job. You will also often have to deal with HR when you accept a job. Some of the first people you meet will be those in human resources who help to welcome you into the company. They will make sure that the company complies with the law and sort out any paperwork. This can be a little tedious, but you should try to get on their good side. It will make it easier to deal with any issues that might arise in the future. They are often the first people you need to approve if you have any problems.

Supervisors and High-ups

When you attend interviews, you will also often have contact with important people in the company. You might meet who would be your supervisor, and the head of the company may even be there. Who attends your interview can depend on the size of the firm. Small businesses might have just the owners of the company in attendance. Larger ones might use HR staff or recruitment consultants to conduct all their interviews. However, you will often meet the person who will be managing you. When you meet these people, it’s essential that they feel you will fit in with the company. Doing a bit of research on both them and the company will help you.

Industry Insiders

Networking is an excellent way to look for a job. You can do it both online and offline, so it’s possible to fit it around other activities. When you’re networking, you’re sure to come across industry insiders who can help you out. However, if you want them to do you a favor, you have to get into their good books. The best way to do this is to take an interest in them and what they do. Show that you have a passion for the industry and make sure they know that you’re looking for work. You won’t necessarily get a job directly from someone you know. However, if someone likes you, they might recommend you for a position or perhaps pass on a contact to you.

Fellow Job Seekers

You will also meet other job seekers when you’re looking for work. Obviously, you may be competing against many of them. You might meet people at interviews or networking events, for example. However, you can still benefit from talking to other job seekers. You can share job hunting tips and meet other people through them. Even though they may be applying for the same jobs as you, you can see them as colleagues instead of rivals. They may be able to advise you of services you can use and resources that can help you find a job.

Brushing up on your communication skills will help to give you an edge when you’re searching for a job. Being able to communicate with a variety of people is essential.

Interview with Amanda from Ray and Remora

Written by Ellen Marie Hawkins

amandaI have to be honest-I agreed to review the record Startle it Up simply for the reason that I liked it.  Surprising, I know.  I like to make things complicated and choose albums that have this overwhelming truth that I hadn’t realized before I listened, or it has to inspire me in some profound way.  And while this album may have the potential to do these things if I dissect it enough, I didn’t want to.  I just wanted to enjoy it.  And I did, every time it played.  It even had the chance to pass my “shuffle test:” if a song was randomly picked while I listened to my iPod, would I skip the song?  The answer was a resounding no-instead of hitting next, I turned it up, and I would smile as soon as I heard it.  With all the discord and the chaos in the world, we all need more things to make us smile, right?

Fresh and light without being pathetic and airy, Startle it Up addresses some tensions revolving around various statuses of relationships.  When Amanda begs to be listened to, she doesn’t sound whiny, when she sings “we just have to find it,” you believe that you will, and when the lyrics bleed transparency, there’s still just enough mystique that leave you wanting to hear more.  I adore this album for sounding different, yet familiar.  I love that this album isn’t fluff, yet it doesn’t make me feel burdened.  Startle it Up is an escape that I didn’t even know I needed until I heard it.  

Relate:  What is your first memory of music?

Amanda:  My first memory of music is probably my Grandpa singing lullabies. We moved to Portland shortly after I was born to live with him.  I don’t remember much from childhood, but I do remember him singing me to sleep, “I gave my love a cherry, that had no stone.”

R: 1994 was an EP of covers, and this album, Startle It Up, is a full-length of originals.  Which one was your favorite to create and which one was more challenging?

A:  Startle It Up is definitely my favorite, we really became the band “RAY & REMORA” with this one.

1994 was fun but it was like a “nice to meet you” project with Dan. We were just fooling around in the studio, recording Kazoos with lots of effects and since we weren’t a fully-fledged band yet, it was less serious. We were just two nerds in a basement playing with computers and instruments.

The “challenging stuff” for me isn’t the recording or music making; it’s all the business matters. After an album it’s a lot paper work and emails. That sucks the life out of me. If anyone wants to be my intern, I’m hiring!

R:  How soon did you know that you wanted to create a second album and that it would be your own creations?  Was it right away or did it take awhile for you to decide this?

A:  As soon as the EP was out and receiving some interest, we started playing live shows. Since the EP was only six songs we had to add some material from each of Dan and my prior songwriting repertoire. From then it was inevitable that we would make an album of originals.

R:  In twenty years a young band wants to cover one of your songs.  Which song do you hope they choose and why?

A:  I want to say “It’s Just” or “Soft Brown Heart”, these two are extra close to me, personally. But, as I will not be the young band member in 20 years… Whomever decided to cover one of our songs, I hope they choose whichever song(s) they connect to the most and that they make it their own.

R:  If you couldn’t be a musician, what would you want to be instead?

A:  I will never not be a musician! But if I had to have a side gig, which I do, it would be making art. I’m a collagist of objects and images.

R:  Best source of inspiration when you need to write a song? Do you use personal experiences or do you use what you see going on around you?

A:  I draw mostly from personal experience, which is sometimes outside actions happening around me, observing them and then trying to understand all the sides of what’s going on. A lot of the songs that I write are about understanding how people talk to and act towards each other. It’s hard to explain one’s self and actions perfectly all the time, where everyone’s coming from emotionally or physically. I struggle with it a lot, on both the understanding and acting side.

R:  How do you describe your music to someone who hasn’t heard you before?  

A:  I keep getting asked this and then I say, “ummm… it’s indie pop rock?” But I’ll let you listen and choose your own words.

R:  What is the biggest hope you have for your music?

A:  My biggest hope is that music will be able to support me and keep me happy till the end of time. If it doesn’t do that then I just may have to find something new. But, it hasn’t failed me yet and I don’t intend on letting it, so watch out world! Ray & Remora & Amanda & Glen are coming for you!