Cleansing the Body, Muddling the Mind

I’m in the middle of a 10-day food cleanse right now and it seems to be going well. I can’t say I’ve adhered to the guidelines without fail. But I have been following the “rules” for the most part, and my body already looks and feels a little different as a result.

This got me thinking about what a 10-day mind cleanse might look like. Would it entail only reading classic literature and cutting out television. Maybe I could add news programming and PBS during the last few days. Should I avoid the computer all together, or just social media sites like Facebook? And what about music? Would a 10-day diet of only classical music leave my mind a more detoxified place?

There are many resources for those who strive to practice clean eating, but what of clean thinking? Too bad there isn’t a list of detailed ingredients on the back of every novel or magazine, something to warn readers the contents were nothing but the literary equivalent of trans fats.

For now, I’m satisfied with my start on detoxifying my body, but I aim to do the same thing for my brain later this summer, before too many deadlines and the specter of school beginning again draw my attention away. Meanwhile, I’m always open to suggestions on how to make my mind a more pure place.


Free Photo from MorgueFile

Free Photo from MorgueFile

Reader Feedback

As part of The Daily Post’s Blogging 201 course, I created this reader feedback survey. I would love to read more about what you think of the content I am offering here at and would be happy to give fellow bloggers the same type of feedback.

Thanks so much for your time and interest in my work.

Failed Queries: New Monthly Feature for an Idea Whose Time Has Come — and Gone

In an attempt to better my blog and step up my social media presence, I have been trying to tackle the assignments presented by The Daily Post in its Blogging 201: Branding and Growth course. The Day Five challenge encourages bloggers to “Give ‘Em What They Want” by posting potentially popular content on the days its most likely to be read. In analyzing my blog’s meager

Free Photo from MorgueFile

Free Photo from MorgueFile

statistics, I determined Tuesdays were the best days to post new content and also decided to add a regular monthly feature to my editorial calendar. This feature, Failed Queries, will appear on the third Tuesday of every month until I run out of rejected ideas, which means it may be around for a while. One of my expired ideas, on the lack of TSA Pre-Check Enrollment Centers near some major cities, seemed like a solid pitch until the agency dramatically expanded the service.

If you are interested in reading another failed query from the archives, please check out On Birthdays, Willie Nelson and Failed Queries.

Dear Editor’s Name:

I hope all is well. I was wondering if you’d be interested in a short piece on the fact the Transportation Security Administration does not have enrollment centers near some major cities. For example, the closest enrollment center to Dallas is about 150 miles away in Lawton, Oklahoma. If St. Louis travelers want to enroll in the Pre-Check program, they have to drive about  90 miles to Herrin, Illinois, population 12,000.

I think this would be of interest to your readers and hope you agree. Please let me know if you’d like more information on this idea. Meanwhile, I have included a link to my resume and some writing samples for you to consider. As for my professional credentials, I have a decade of experience as a writing teacher as well as years of reporting experience as a freelancer and staff writer at publications around the country, including The Dallas Morning News. Most recently, I have been working on stories for publication by magazines and blogs including SUCCESS, Eating Well, Poets & Writers, DRAFT Magazine, Organic Gardening, The FruitGuys Almanac and WOW! Women On Writing.


Charlene Oldham