Author Archives: Jessan Dunn Otis

About Jessan Dunn Otis

Founder|Owner|Strategic Writer|Published Poet|Entrepreneur|Mentor|Motivator|Advocate|Ally|Realistic Optimist|Woman-Owned Business|former Adjunct Professor ; and, a tad more mischief. Based in Rhode Island (USA).

This Place Called Home

This place called home has shifted over the decades. Growing up the first several years, home was a Cape Cod-type bungalow, built just after WWII, in a suburb of New York City – commuting distance. The large tract of land behind our home was an old orchard farm. The barn still stood, slowly falling into disrepair. But, the apple trees! Oh, those acres of Granny Smith apple trees were maganificent!

Those trees had, obviously, been tended, pruned, and nurtured. The branches were smooth, easy to climb. The apples were tart/sweet, brilliant, sap green, and always in abundance. I used to climb those trees as the Granny Smiths ripened, perfuming the air with their plump greenness. The pruning created upward, smaller branches where some of the best fruit was.

Sitting among the apples, dangling my legs over smooth branches, crunching baby teeth into sun-warmed flesh that puckered my lips – was there anything better than that those days?

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Social Media Fanfare Winner…Ten Years Later

Social Media Fanfare Winner Shares Her Telework Tips

Social media has changed the way we interact with friends, family, and yes, even coworkers. As part of Telework Week 2012, Telework Exchange launched a Social Media Fanfare contest, to find the ultimate telework fan.  

We sorted through hundreds of tweets, likes, posts, and tips on Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare to pick the top fan who actively posted on Telework Week’s social media platforms. Read more below about her telework experiences as well as some of her favorite things about teleworking. Congratulations to our Telework Week 2012 Ultimate Fan.

Jessan Dunn Otis

Teleworking isn’t anything new to our Telework Week Ultimate Fan, Jessan Dunn Otis.  A teleworker since May 1996, Jessan finds she can accomplish more when working from home.  Not only is she more productive, but telework allows her to spend more time with her family and friends while still being able to manage her work schedule.

An independent freelance writer, editor, consultant, and mentor who works in the Providence, Rhode Island area, Jessan says telework helps her be more accessible to her local, national and international clients since she can spend more time working, and less time commuting.  “[I have] a very short commute (approximately 12-14 steps),” she says.  Technology tools such as her laptop computer, phone, and voice-over-Internet Protocol services help her stay connected. 

Jessan knows work/life balance is key when teleworking.  She takes breaks from her work schedule to go for a walk, sit in the sun, run errands, and enjoy lunch every day with her husband.  “Celebrating 2nd day of #TeleworkWeek by going 4 a well-earned walk. Enough ‘time on task’ 4 now. Join me? #PVD #RI pic.twitter.com/w6rgzYtf,” she tweeted during Telework Week.

But for this full-time teleworker, Telework Week is not a once-in-a-while thing.  “Alas (for some), #TeleworkWeek comes to an end today. For those of us who’ve been teleworking a long time … #DanceOn…! Cheers!” she tweeted.

Jessan can be contacted at:  

website|blog http://JessanDunnOtis-Writer.com

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jesssandunnotis

Twitter: @JessanDunnOtis 

P.S. Ten years later Jessan’s still teleworking, now referred to as remote working. This piece was slightly edited in October, 2022.     

DISSOLVE

As when you touch yourself for the first

     time inside and out

Or when you have left without saying goodbye

     for the last time and you do not know it yet

Like walking into a dark room where everything

     is known and you are excited that

     something alive and beautiful will brush

     your face

Or I am the long tree whose branches

     move gently wild from the wind

     and leave marks on your face

     that you will remember when you dream

     and you will go back to stare for days

     until your eyes ache

Like arms that nobody who has ever loved you

    has had before or has held you more strong

    than you will ever be held again

And you will weep because you know that

    that is true.

(c) Jessan Dunn (DeCredico) Otis – 1985/1987 – CQ, California State Poetry Quarterly, Spring-Summer 1987, Volume 14, Number 1, p.11. 

The 5 Ws + HOW

Sit down and begin to pull together a business plan, mission statement, professional introductory email, business-related text messages, informative YouTube clip, making the choice for your business’ name; and you’re faced with three truths:

* writing isn’t as easy as it appears

* everything matters

* it’s not only what you think you want to say; but, to whom, what, where, when, why and how

While any of the aforementioned endeavors can employ many mediums – i.e. video, film, radio, TV and so on – it’s likely that, at some stage, writing is crucial to the process of creating your message. Brainstorming. Whiteboards. Drafting. Formulating. Editing. Proofreading. Final content.

With that in mind, recall the first time you were under deadline and staring at a blank piece of paper or that flashing indicator on an empty screen. Dwelling too long on that memory might cause cold sweats and elevated heart rate. However, recalling that visceral experience can, also, be today’s lesson.

What your body was telling you is that you’re invested in doing the work and hitting that target with your best shot.

To convey your message always takes planning and planning equals time – whether the amount of time is an hour, day, a week or, even, years.

Because you’re invested in doing the work and hitting that deadline with your best work, everything matters. Do not edit your ideas and impulses. Be fearless. Be ridiculous. Be silly. Be serious. Be thorough. Eventually, you’ll reduce your information to become the most accurate, clear, concise, creative and effective, according to your goals, intentions and audience.

Finally, the content of and medium for your message must take into consideration the 5 Ws + HOW.

* WHO – To whom are you conveying your message? Who’s your audience?

* WHAT – What do you want them to know or learn or feel or do?

* WHERE – In what context/where are they receiving your message?

* WHEN – When are they receiving your message?

* WHY – Why are they receiving your message?

* HOW – How do you want them to respond or what do you want them to do after receiving your message?

When you’ve answered the above questions, begin to refine and repeat until you hit your target. Remember, this process requires regular reviews, readjustments, refreshing, and repeating.

Good luck!

Sometimes life fools you.

#Rise_and_Shine Welcome to #Monday, September 5, 2022

Sometimes you think you know your life. Sometimes life fools you.

Yesterday afternoon, while traveling only a very short distance, my SweetMan and I were going to pick up a specific kind of clam rake that someone we’d never met was offering for free on our local Nextdoor site.

Thing is, Al had not been feeling too good the past few days. He’s had severe motion sickness all his life. With birthdays, unbidden it comes and goes often, causing him to sit, quietly, and make no sudden movements. But, he really wanted *that* clam rake!

We arrived at Jim and Jane’s. The clam rake was perfect! Instant kinship. Jim and Al hit it off  – lots of shared interests. Jane was sunning on their deck. Jim and Al went inside to continue to talk. I joined Jane on the deck. Good conversation.

Eventually, Jim and Al came outside. Al wasn’t looking too good. Longer story short: after they joined Jane and me on the deck, Al grayed, broke a cold sweat, collasped, passed out, and vomited.

Jane called 911. Jim helped me bring Al to an upright position so he wouldn’t aspirate his vomit. By the time Warwick Rescue arrived, Al was sitting squat on the deck, phasing in and out.

Time was approximately 2 PM.

I arrived at Kent County Hospital Emergency, just after they brought in Al. I had to wait until they processed him to get the okay to see him.

Doctors. Information exchanged. “Tell me what happened.” more than once. All the while I’m watching to see his color come back – he had looked like library paste sitting on that deck.

Chest x-ray. Off for a ct scan. Back in #22. Color looking better. Speech more coherent. Waiting for blood work tests to come back. Talking with each other. Laughing. Relaxing.

Shift change. Two new doctors come in. “We think it’s better that you stay overnight for observation.” I raised my hand. “Do I have a vote in this?”  Al said, “Okay.”

Once in a while I had stepped outside to breathe the (now) late afternoon/early evening air and to exhale.

When Al got supper, part of which we shared as I sat on the edge of his bed, I felt he was in good hands; and, although he doesn’t like hospitals, it was okay for me to kiss him and leave.

Time was approximately 7:15 PM.

On my way home last night, I stopped to thank Jane and Jim for their kindness. They offered me an adult libation, just a shot. I accepted.

All things being good and equal, once everything is okay today, I’ll go back to Kent County Hospital later and bring my SweetMan home.

Sometimes you think you know your life. Sometimes you don’t. Just as well, sometimes.

#HappyLaborDay

(posted to Facebook, Monday, September 5, 2022 at approximately 6:44AM)

“Tell her your story. She will listen.”

People have told me their stories since I was a girl. I listened.

Over time, doing walking errands in the city, complete strangers would stop me and begin to tell something they wanted me to know. I listened as long as I could before I had to contine on my way.

Eventually, I began to believe there was an invisible (to me), neon light on my forehead that flashed erratically announcing: “Tell her your story. She will listen.”

Thing is: folks have been telling their stories to each other for millions of years. In a cave. Around a fire. Most likely to indicate where food could be found – an important imperative; or, what areas to avoid because of imminent danger. Perhaps, eventually, expressing more abstract sentiments, like respect or hate or love.

It’s important to share our stories with each other – our universal, human common denominators. To bear witness and to tell about our joys, losses, failures, challenges, successes; and, even a ridiculous recounting.

Sometimes, when you share a deep, long-silent experience, memory, or desire with another person, it can change you and your listener. The burden of your story is brought out and into the light, no longer tucked away in a dark place. It takes courage. You trust you’re telling someone who will not judge, who will understand and empathsize. In the telling and the listening a weight is given up and a recognition that “Ah ha, I know what you’re talking about, I’ve had the same experience, too!”

By telling, you can, also, share a story in a way that reveals just how silly we can be, making complete nincompoops of ourselves (often in public) that elicits a similar, response: “Me, too!” Laughter is a healing thing.

Imagine, if you will, for just a moment, that you’re sitting around an open fire, with millions of stars dancing in the blue-black night sky. What story do you want to tell?

Washed In The Water

I’ve been washed in the water

Baptised into another life

You restore my soul

You rejuvenate my spirit

You lead me to still places, even

in the presence of turmoil and

terror

As safe harbor in a storm

Let me drop anchor and hold strong

against torment-tossed winds

I’ve been washed in the water

true home

Welcome me back when all this is done.

______________________________________

Jessan Dunn Otis (c) 2022

What do you leave for this world?

What’s the legacy you leave for this world when your time on this earth as a breathing, living human being is done?

Did you love enough? Were you kind enough? Did you give it your best effort each day? Did you, in James Taylor’s song, “…shower the people you love with love…”? Did you overcome your fears? Did you give all to what you do best? Did you take care of yourself (not selfsih), so you could better take care of those who needed it? Did you hold the door for the one behind you? Did you give a stranger a hug when they needed it? Are you grateful for the gifts you’ve been give – like waking up each day to give it your best, again?

Or, did you give up, give over, slip down that slippery slope of anxiety, selfishness, hate, bigotry, and loathing? Did you tell a story about someone or something when you only knew less than half the whole story? Did you knee-jerk respond to someone you care for when a moment to step back would have stopped the words that you can never take back? Did you forget that your life is worth living?

It’s always a matter of deciding to do this rather than that. To say, or not say, something. It’s always a choice. Every day, it’s always a choice.

What’s your legacy?

What’s your pain point?

PAIN POINT: Your site needs clear, concise, compelling content/copy to tell your unique story.

SOLUTION: Contact me. I’ve been creating original content, collaterals, and/or readables since May, 1996, as a freelance, independent, strategic writer, for individuals and businesses with well-funded projects.

Reach out.

Send an email. JessanDunnOtis[at]gmail[.]com.

Let’s have a conversation. (401)301-0638.

I look forward to earning your trust and collaborating with you.

~ Jessan