Contest: Let’s Make a Writer’s Gratitude List

Contest: Make a Writer's Gratitude List. Makealivingwriting.com

Years ago, when I was finding it hard to get out of bed, much less write, I started making a daily gratitude list.

To celebrate Thanksgiving, I’d like to collaborate with you today and make a writer’s ultimate gratitude list. You game?

If you haven’t done this before, writing a gratitude list is a great way to start the day, or to end it. Our human brains are programmed to focus on the negative. We needed to remember where the saber-toothed tigers were, so we’d avoid that valley.

In our modern lives full of negative news headlines and fears for the future, dwelling on the bad stuff can really sap your writing creativity.

Focusing on the positive is a powerful tool to remind us of the simple joys of being alive.

Ready to join in?

Gratitude list: Contest rules (and prizes!)

The rules for this contest are simple: Add your top 3 gratitude items in the comments. (Yes. We’ve turned comments back on just for this contest. You can also add them over on Facebook or LinkedIn.) Make them uniquely yours. Write the heck out of them.

Here’s the prize rundown:

  • Top winner gets a free year in my Freelance Writers Den community (and yes, you get in right now)
  • 2 runners-up get a month free in the Den.

I’m going to have my Den staff join me in judging this one, including moderator-in-chief Angie Mansfield and my admin extraordinaire Jen Roland.

I’ll get it started with three things I’m grateful for right now:

  1. Owning a home
  2. Unusually sunny Fall weather in Seattle
  3. The ability to make my own schedule

Look forward to seeing your entries! I’ll announce the winners on Monday, here on this post.

P.S. CONGRATULATIONS to our winners!

Grand prize goes to Anna Mouton

Runners up:

Bud Steed
Nada Adel Sobhi

Thanks to everyone who entered – it was really hard for us to choose the winners!

Freelance Writers Den: Learn how to grow your income.

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100 comments on “Contest: Let’s Make a Writer’s Gratitude List
  1. Tracie Talmadge says:

    I am grateful for the universal language of music. It’s power ranges from subtle which can transform a sad mood into something more hopeful or the oomph to blast procrastination into oblivion. I am grateful for my musical companion in all it’s forms because with out it I would truly be lost.

    I am grateful for the unconditional love of my dog who always forgives me when I get too busy and forget to spend loving time with her.

    I am grateful for being able to spend time outdoors in state parks, city parks or botanical gardens. Time spent in the great out doors always restores me to my still center where my problems disappear.

  2. Janeen says:

    1) I’m grateful for all the challenges that 2017 threw my way. It definitely showed me that I am a lot stronger than I think. For the first time I felt like a “serious” writer when my editor threw me 4 assignments which I completed (on time) while working 2 jobs, buying a new home and dealing with a health issue.

    2) I’m grateful for love. Love of friends, my mother and an amazing man, people who believe in me more than I sometimes believe in myself. I can’t imagine doing life without them.

    3) I’m grateful for the ability to find strength and positivity during pain. Losing my little sister in the most horrible way imaginable in some weird way lead me to embrace my passions in life. Writing about happy things was how I grieved , even if no one read most of what I wrote.

  3. I’m grateful to have not been near the recent bombing that hit my country, Egypt, just two days ago (when I had originally seen this post).

    I’m grateful to have my family around me, even with our ups and downs; they are there.

    I’m grateful for the ability to read (as there are many people in my country who are illiterate, estimates cite millions). This makes me grateful for the ability to constantly learn new things.
    Nada Adel Sobhi recently posted…Death at the Emerald, historical mystery by R. J. Koreto – Guest PostMy Profile

  4. Jesse Scott says:

    I wanted to bring it back to the core of what I’m thankful for:

    My eyes: So I can see all of the beauty in the world, a sunset, my girlfriends smiling face, the printed word, and what dangers may be lurking in the shadows.

    My hearing: So I can hear incredible music, the gift of laughter, instructions and lessons to learn and grow and become a better person, and I can hear the words “watch out!”

    My mind: So I can control my body to move, walk, and speak, that I can create and process and write it all down on the page, and I have the mental capacity to realize how lucky I am to have these three simple things we so often take for granted.

    That is what I am truly grateful for.

    Thanks!
    Jesse Scott

  5. Cyrine says:

    I am grateful for ;

    The peace within Myself
    The love i have and i am sharing it
    The thirst for khnowledge

  6. Chris L says:

    I’m eternally thankful for:

    My health and the freedom it grants me

    The ability to grow

    The people I love, and the passions I fuel

  7. May says:

    I am grateful for:

    1. Having everything I need (vs. want). On Thanksgiving morning during my neighborhood walk, I saw a familiar man faithfully doing his daily dumpster diving for recyclables.

    2. Rediscovering my long-forgotten writing ability.

    3. My friend who gives me great insights from a reader’s perspective, and steady encouragement to keep writing.

  8. Hailey says:

    I’m grateful for my beagle puppy, my job at a nonprofit, and the fact that my writing career has exploded lately.

  9. Theresa says:

    The big smile on my face as I write with the dog warming my feet – after 40 years of wanting to but not being brave enough!
    That I’m learning so much from research needed for assignments – my dinner table conversation has improved immensely!
    No more office politics- the dog ALWAYS agrees with my decisions & doesn’t mind which teabags I buy (yep I’m English!).

  10. Stacey Nash says:

    I’m thankful for:

    1. The four hours my husband devoted to helping me put together my new desk. It makes writing and staying organized so much easier.

    2. Lemon sandwich. Yes, that’s right. When I was first married, I ran out of regular honey when making peanut butter and honey sandwiches. I made mine with lemon honey. I refused to NOT eat my disgusting sandwich even though the hubs offered me part of his. That same stubbornness has helped me make it as a freelance writer, and I’m grateful for that. But, “lemon sandwich” is also the phrase my husband uses to let me know when my stubbornness is getting in the way of what’s really important.

    3. What’s really important. My family–husband, of course, and 4 beautiful children. They not only offer love, support, and unending laughter but my kids keep me grounded. They don’t hesitate to remind me that my forehead looks like a peanut butter cookie. Being with them, all of them, is the most important, fulfilling part of my day.

  11. Crystal P Anthony says:

    I am thankful for waking up every morning. I am thankful for my family. Most of all I am thankful for the confidence I have in my ability to write.

  12. I’m grateful that I caught the auto misspelling that turned my “grateful” into “hateful”… Do I get extra points for catching that before I was totally embarrassed?

    I’m grateful that I have many freelance clients that treat and pay me well. But I wish their university didn’t have such onerous and ridiculous insurance requirements for sole proprietorships, like for workman’s comp and slander. I write research/education grants and progress reports for >$10M grants. All my work is vetted by the principal investigators. What danger to the university can there be? These insurance requirements may actually compel me to close my business in 2018. But I will be grateful for that because then I can plan my own time, do my own writing (I’m exploring movie reviewing), and not be subject to typical last-minute requests even from long-standing clients. I’m in range of social security (I just haven’t yet signed up), so I have the luxury of making this choice. Yet another thing to be grateful for.

    And, I’m grateful for having the NYT-sanctioned privilege of starting a sentence with “and.” There IS a place for that dear “and,” and I use it frequently to reinforce the point!

  13. Susan Pennington says:

    My top three blessings I am grateful for right now:

    1) Losing my job which has allowed me time to discover what makes me truly happy

    2) Yoga because it has changed my life all for the better

    3) My husband who is the smartest man I know

  14. Juli Ocean says:

    I’m so grateful for the relationship with my daughter and how much healing it has brought to my life.
    My two little joyful grandsons (3 and 3 months) and their health.
    The men and women in my life who encourage my writing and don’t mind my little weirdnesses or hearing the latest knowledge tidbit I just learned.
    OVERACHIEVER BONUS: Grateful for the Den and all the folks who really are trying to make writers successful.

  15. Rebecca Milton says:

    1) to my daughters for being born to me;
    2) to my family for teaching me contrast;
    3) to technology which aided in me getting my life back.

  16. 1. Faith in God who makes things work for good.
    2. A Life to serve my fellow man, especially by sharing my ideas by writing.
    3. Good Health which allows me to go on living and serving.

  17. Renayle Fink says:

    I am grateful for life. Not only for me being alive and having the ability to make my dreams a reality, but for my mom being alive. During the holidays last year, she was in and out of the hospital with different complications that came out of nowhere. I spent that time going back and forth from her house to mine. I drove over 1,000 miles in just under a month traveling.
    There were times where I didn’t know if she would even make it to the new year, and I began to think about how to handle death expenses and taking care of my sister. I missed Thanksgiving and Christmas last year, and I was depressed and so drained (physically and emotionally) I wanted to end my marriage and not have my husband go through this pain with me.
    Thank God, she pulled through into the new year and by April, she was feeling much better than she had in years. I spent Thanksgiving yesterday just enjoying my crazy in-laws and being grateful we are all here and being able to be present with each other. My mom is doing well (I brought her a plate and spent time with her yesterday also), and my marriage is still strong. So that’s what I’m grateful for.

  18. Shannon Perry says:

    In the last few years I’ve been blessed by two grandchildren. Oscar will be three in February, and his little cousin Hazel (from another daughter) turns two in January. Truly, a grandchild gives me another chance at child rearing done right. Life as a mother wasn’t easy – life wasn’t easy, and I regret not being there emotionally for my three girls. I’m humbled by the beautiful mothers they are. It’s so delicious to support them. Since we live at distances, when I do visit it’s generally for a good stretch, and I can enjoy Hazel sitting in the middle of my suitcase. It doesn’t matter if she unfolds the clean clothes I’ve just stacked on her bed because I have all the time in the world. Granted, I go home and sleep for days but it’s pure joy and worth every second. Now that I am healthier and happier, I am so grateful to get to share my life and love with these gorgeous kids.

  19. Top three things I show gratitude towards:

    1. A blank piece of paper, full of unwritten words.
    2. Unrestrained love in a less-than-perfect relationship.
    3. My keyboard kitty, you know, for those times in life when you need a fluffy cuddle.

  20. Carol Tice says:

    Wow — I can see the competition is really heating up! I’ll check in again on Sunday to read them all.

    It is heartening in this current culture of hate to read so many GOOD things happening in writers’ lives! It’s worth taking the time to stop and count blessings. 😉

  21. I am thankful for a husband that works hard for his family despite a disability. Not thinking about himself or his needs, he gets up every day and gets the job done. When he would love to be able to pursue other interests, relax from a life of daily grind, or even retire, he continues to work to provide health care for his family.

    I am thankful for children with a giving heart. One son served for four years on the mission field in a third-world country. My daughter gives her afternoons one day a week at an inner-city after-school program in Chicago. She texted my husband this week asking him to find her a size 13 men’s shoe for a homeless man she passes each day. My teenager wants me to give to the beggars at the intersections when we drive into town.

    At an age (50s) when all of our peers take one pharmaceutical drug or another, I am thankful for health. Neither my husband nor I take any daily medications.

  22. Liz Lansing says:

    Wow! I love this! This year I have so many things I have been blessed with and am truly grateful for! My top 3…

    1. Divine healing! In April I was diagnosed with a very rare and serious spinal cord injury. The only know western treatment is surgery along with a mountain of toxic pills. This started my spiritual journey to seek God’s divine healing!! I’m surgery and pharmaceutical free making greater progress than anyone expected:)
    2. My wonderful soulmate! Most people judged me, called me stupid and uneducated when I chose to use Eastern medicine to cure my illness. I’ve been accused of reading too many labels and watching too many documentaries. My love stood by side, supporting every decision and even helps with my research! He encourages and supports my choices and is making changes with me!
    3. Isolation!! I know this one sounds a little weird! Before I was diagnosed with Cauda Equina Syndrome, I worked 2 jobs and led a very active life doing for and helping everyone around me. When my injury had me completely home bound, no one came to see me. This gave me time to evaluate relationships, determine what makes a relationship healthy, and process how to let go of unhealthy relationships and toxic people without feeling guilt, shame or like I was abandoning them!!!

  23. Ravi says:

    Though pointing out only 3 is difficult, I decided to give these 3.

    1. Having a spirit to focus on important things than unnecessary discussions and arguments. And ability to keep my mind from the negative/disturbing questions or comments of others.

    (Faith in God, and in the life given by God makes my spirit.)

    2. Nature and clean atmosphere around me.

    3. Remembering good memories from childhood and the past, to write better stories and making my time fun and peaceful.

  24. Johnny says:

    Grateful for:

    1. Husband, family, and friends supporting my decisions and being able to tell me when I’m being overzealous

    2. Mentors that caring, forthcoming, and harsh but fair.

    3. On the path to taking back control of my time

  25. Annette Davis says:

    1. For my daughter as she battles Lupus

    2. For my son who keeps us all in
    stitches when things look gloomy

    3. For my extended family and friends
    who make our lives rich with love

  26. Thomas Fitzgerald says:

    1. Working from a home office and the luxury of not losing precious time each day preparing for work, and then commuting to work and back home in the evening.

    2. The freedom and ability to spend time working in and enjoying my garden during work breaks multiple time throughout each day.

    3. My two dogs laying at me feet when I write – Flower and Tank Girl.

  27. Kim Lewis says:

    So many things to be grateful for this year . . .

    Good Health (my mother and grandmother at this age were battling breast cancer)
    Ability to be passionate about a new adventure — being almost 60 I am working on a new career since work is drying up.
    All our children happy and healthy and in solid relationships. There is nothing better than seeing your children happy, healthy and living their dreams.

  28. Ann Walker says:

    Hi all,
    Hmmm…. so many things to be grateful for that it’s hard to pick just three, but I’ll have a shot at it.

    1. I’m still amazingly mentally healthy, despite being over 60 and wheelchair-bound from an accident. Although the body has its ups and downs, my mind seems to just get sharper the more I write and the more diverse the writing is.

    2. I’ve got a wonderful son, fab DIL and two adorable grand-babies. I thought at one point that I wouldn’t get to see grandchildren, so every day with them is a real joy.

    3. I’m grateful that I have the ability to put words together in a way that makes me independent enough to earn my own living. Scratchy it can be sometimes and I’ll probably never be rich, but I’m not beholden to anyone for anything.

  29. Beth Casey says:

    The top 3 things I am grateful for are:

    1. Having a wonderful family around me
    2. Living in a peaceful, mountainous region with friendly neighbors
    3. Having the ability to work remotely on my own schedule

  30. Elvis says:

    here are my top three gratitude items that make me one of the happiest man in this planet earth.
    1. To be able to serve the Almighty God by all means. I do have a nice voice to sing prays and warship songs, do make prayers before and after bed.
    2. Another item is that I have a wonderful wife. she encourages me in times of difficulties, holds my shoulders and says ”all is well,” she holds my hands and says that she is really contented with me.
    3. The joy of my son is yet another one. he says ”ta ta ta ta ta” as he looks at me. Everyday I learn new things about him. he only accepts my gifts alone. no one can give him anything to accept. This makes him a unique little boy. Really interesting boy.

  31. 1. A supportive husband that encourages me to go after a freelance career
    2. A new home across the country that we are moving to this week
    3. Mystery Oreos- those somehow won over pumpkin pie this year, and they have ruined me.

  32. Merna Shohdy says:

    Hi, carol
    1- Having a wonderful family and lovely friends.
    2- Owing a small online business.
    3- Having a good healthy.
    Happy Thanksgiving!

  33. Andrea Phillips says:

    Thanks Carol! My gratitude:

    1.My belief in a higher power that keeps my spirit open to receive life giving thoughts and guidance.

    2. My focus on health, which allows me to enjoy my life and success.

    3. My family and friends.

  34. Susan England says:

    These are the things I am thankful for during this year’s Thanksgiving celebrations:

    1. I am thankful for my husband David. He is my soulmate and is truly there for me; for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health. I love him completely , trust him implicitly and look forward to the rest of our lives together.

    2. I am thankful for my friends. Like the best band in the history of the universe, the Beatles, “I get by with a little help from my friends.” My compassionate, quirky, generous friends make my life much more interesting and fulfilling.

    3. I am thankful for the four lovely cats I share my life with currently as well as all the cats I’ve loved before. My cats are my children, my nerve tonic, my furry massage therapists, my purring hot water bottles on a cold night and tiny comedians who keep me constantly entertained. They help me stay sane in an often infuriating, confusing and critical world. I can’t imagine a life without cats.

  35. Chris H. Call says:

    Three things I am grateful for on Thanksgiving and everyday thereafter.

    !. Having good health.
    2. To be an amazing cook.
    3. To be blessed with owning a Rottweiler.

  36. Nifty says:

    1. I’m grateful for rejection
    During my college job placements, I made it to the last round of interviews for leading fashion brands like Tommy Hilfiger & Puma. And then I got rejected by all of them. If that hadn’t happened, I wouldn’t have been writing.
    2. I’m grateful for kind & supportive communities
    From my family & friends to every other writer I’ve e-met,including people in the Make a Living Writing community; you’ve all told me that I CAN. That I can make a living, even as an Indian writer.
    3. For the grace of another year
    I am thankful to God! With everything that’s happening around the world, I’m lucky to have a roof over my head. To have food on my table. To be blessed with good health. To be able to live without fear. And to have made it through another year.

  37. Bryan Downey says:

    Three things I’m grateful for:

    My ten month old beautiful daughter lily
    My fiancé who is way more understanding than she should be
    The family I found when I met my fiancé

  38. Anu Roots says:

    These are three of things I’m grateful for this Thanksgiving Day:

    1-When my Papillon’s breeder first offered to take my puppy back after I told her about his extreme fearfulness I said no; I wanted to give Remy a little more time with me even though I was way out of my league raising an anxious dog. Remy was afraid of everyone at first, and new sights and sounds made him cower and tremble.

    2-When I spoke with Remy’s breeder a second time about his anxiety, she repeated her offer to take him back. Ignoring my own logic and common sense (which was telling me to return this puppy), I told her no again. My intuition told me that I might be able to help this little dog. So I kept him.

    3- Almost six and a half years later Remy is still leery of strangers. But he’s no longer the walking nervous breakdown he was when I met him. With people he knows and trusts Remy is outgoing and loving. Time has been our ally along with patience, love, and heroic efforts on Remy’s part and mine.

    Best of all, Remy is a joyful dog these days. He tells me how happy he is by channeling his energy into exuberant, over-the-top expressions of glee by running laps around our living room. There’s no interrupting his happy ritual either. Once he starts zooming all I can do is stay out of the way and enjoy the show. Like the day Remy ran 14 laps around the living room sofas just to welcome me home from my afternoon out.

    I’m so thankful I didn’t give Remy back.

  39. 1. I’m thankful that I’m able to give the voiceless — from the victims of mass bombings to therapy dogs — a voice through writing. While it doesn’t necessarily “change” the world, I believe that it changes that person’s (and sometimes the reader’s) worldview.
    2. I’m thankful for a family who stands behind me. They don’t tell me to “get a real job”, and they even ask who I’ve pitched recently.
    3. I’m thankful for all of the friends that I’ve gained this year via interviews and social media: Lynn Julian, Lynette Whiteman, Beverly Miller, and many more!There’s that saying that it takes a village. As a writer, my village is constantly growing. Whenever I celebrate, they celebrate too. When I’m down, they build me up. If I make a mistake, they gently call me out. And vice versa.

    Happy Thanksgiving! 🙂 And thank you Carol Tice and the Make A Living Writing team for holding this contest. Good luck everyone!

  40. Amber Roshay says:

    1. I’m grateful that I don’t have to stand outside of Vons on Thanksgiving with a sign that says I have three kids and I lost my job. Saw this today.
    2. Grateful that my rugrats love me.
    3. Grateful that my husband inspires me to get up at 4 a.m to write.

  41. Hi,

    1. I’m grateful for cats that can’t talk back because I know my self-doubting thoughts aren’t realistic, so I’m glad the fluffy creatures can’t call me out on my rants.
    2. I’m grateful for family and friends who can talk back and like exchanging business ideas with me and believing in my thinking ability, which at 4 a.m. Egypt time is pretty much over and out.
    3. Lastly, I’m grateful for my resourcefulness, business mind, and the ability to write (hands that move, a brain that works, support, and the ability to learn from my mentors).

  42. Christina Figueroa says:

    My top things I’m grateful for:

    1.) Being a mom and arising to the challenge of motherhood and work.
    2.) Time to pursue my dreams and the creative things that fulfill me.
    3.) My community of family and friends. Having people close by to celebrate all the joys of this life with.

  43. Donna Elaine Fields says:

    1. I am grateful that I live in the USA where freedom abounds despite the crazy stuff we see and read about every day.
    2. I am exceedingly grateful for daughters, nieces, and nephews that lovingly care about me.
    3. I am grateful that my brain still functions well as I age gracefully, and am able to find great joy in writing – a P.S. goes along w/this: finding fantastic writing advice, suggestions, and ideas on the internet; thanks to you, Carol, and many others.

  44. Diana Decker says:

    1) Sincere gratitude to my Buddhist practice for helping me overcome depression, anxiety and sadness.
    2) Gratitude for the help and support I have received from my older sister after being diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome.
    3) Gratitude for many cats I’ve rescued since 1988; most became my pets, and also my current three rescues. I really enjoy helping animals and people.

  45. Cory Caaz says:

    Hi, Carol. Cool contest.

    I’m grateful for:

    1) fearlessly fumbling toward a win as a writer;

    2) freedom from addiction to drugs, alcohol, porn and freeze pops; and

    3) french fries.

  46. Billie Wade says:

    1. The gift of the ability to assemble words on a page in a manner that helps others.
    2. The variety of writing projects on which I am working.
    3. A comfortable home office that overlooks trees and green space and two streets.

  47. Hello Carol,
    Here are three things I am grateful for:
    1.Writing has become second nature to me and I couldn’t be more grateful to have kick-started my freelance career this year.
    2. I’m grateful to be linked to such a great freelance writing family such as this one. Because of this family, I know not to make the classic mistakes a beginning freelance writer makes- and I am still learning a lot from makealivingwriting.com (I literally take notes)
    3. I am grateful for the fact that I completed my medical degree this year (it was arduous, believe me) and that am on the path to health writing/medical freelancing.
    I hope I make it into the den; I’ll be more than grateful for that!

  48. Desiré Hendricks says:

    1. I am grateful for my yoga practice and the students who choose to take my classes. I learn something everyday.
    2. I am grateful for the people who encourage me to pursue my goals.
    3. I am grateful for Trader Joe’s. The food selection is awesome and the staff is great.

  49. Cassie says:

    1. I’m grateful for fluffy, fuzzy, socks. You know, the ones that feel like you’re walking on clouds and a sheep is hugging your feet? Yeah, those. I’m grateful for those.

    2. I’m grateful for sugar. Because when you add it to tea, the tea doesn’t taste like dirt water anymore. Can’t be spewing tea all over my keyboard. That’s just not gonna work (and since I’m a freelancer, a broken keyboard means I won’t work either).

    3. I’m super grateful for my support system. From the family that continually prays for me and picks me up when I need a boost, all the way down to my “internet” friends who are my cheerleaders and are willing to listen to me complain. Without that support system, I’d be lost.

  50. Robin Staley says:

    1 Jesus die on the cross for me.

    2 the oxygen to breathe

    3 teachers to learn how to write and to apply them

  51. Diane says:

    Terrific idea for a contest!
    1. Family and friends who encourage me to write!
    2. My lovely, fabulous daughter married in September – to a man I like!
    3. The Internet so I can work with, learn from, and keep in contact with people all over the world.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  52. Tammy saling says:

    I am greatful for my little dog (Missy). If I didn’t have her my heart would be numb to feeling love. She shows me unconditional love. She misses me when I’m gone and I feel needed by her and that gives me purpose in life.

    I’m also greatful to know my God’s great grace and for the struggles in life that made me a better and stronger person. He taught me how to forgive and to be humble. Without Him, my life would not be what it is today.

    Lastly, I’m greatful that I have my health that allows me to lead an active life. I am able to help others through massage therapy and a kind heart to listen.

    These are the three things I am greatful for today and always.

  53. Barb Johnson says:

    1. I thank God every day for His love and care for my family and me, and for being born in America!

    2. I’m so grateful for the love of writing which started when I was 7 years old. It’s now 77 years later and I love it even more.

    3. I am thankful for wonderful websites like the Den, which is the best place for learning to improve my skills, get paying gigs, and meet new friends.

    I could really go on and on but I will–every day–start my day with three different thanks.

  54. Bob Wonnacott says:

    Grateful list:
    1. Waking up in the morning to enjoy the upcoming day.
    2. A family that loves me and supports any and all my aspirations
    3. The freedom of retirement that allows my pursuit of goals.

  55. Titus Kamunya says:

    1. I am grateful because clients choose to work with me based on my abilities and qualifications and not based on looks. True story, fresh from college, I applied for a sales job and was invited for an interview. I answered the questions confidently but the CEO had his prejudgements. He told me that my face was not brave enough to make a sale. He believed I appeared innocent and thus convincing someone would be hard. Right now I do not need to meet with a client face to face.
    2. Ability to make my own schedules
    3. Ability to work from anywhere in the world as long as there is an internet connection

  56. I am very grateful for the fact that even through all of my trauma from childhood, ,the 9 years of instructionalisation due to this trauma and the impact it has had on my state of mind due to my high functioning autism. then became of that it became a full blown low end of the spectrum function. At of the age of 14 I became no verbal due to the turmoil and torture I sustanded at the age of 7 to 17. I was never diagnose in a effective helpful way in fact i was miss diegnosed on a contuiual bases and due to this and the the medications my state had worsened to the point of no function or at all classed as Incapible and The professionals Said I would never be independent or look like functioning at a high level to the point of study and the idear of a job, yet I am now all these thing exsept free of the past that has put up barriers that I may never see my rights or the posidilily of a far go. due to stigma and my year of incapibility, but thenks to my given strengths of will and determination to survive I am sooooo incredibly grateful for the strate as well is my new founded diegnosed a disability that has prove that not only am I capible but that my cognitive function is that of the gifted types.
    yes I will alway have the issue behind my sensory input and output to the point of overwness yet this is nothing compared to the gift god has hended me that of life ,this is of such overwhelming joy my gratefulness is that of no discribable way through words the closes I can get to exspress my gratefulness is that of my joy and amazement. I am soo grateful that I have finally seen the end of my the tunnel of turmoil and silence now free of medication and fulliy independence. I have just entered a world of opitnity and I’m runing with It in full fath and undiscribable gratefulness to the point of no turning back as well a all this my memoir has began and my writing life has enter in into truely realistic and achievable goal 🙂

  57. Cheryl Ireland says:

    I’m grateful for some food to eat
    And for my family.
    Grateful I know how to write,
    And yes, my friends, that’s three!

  58. Frederick Sekyere says:

    I have learnt to cultivate the attitude of being grateful, but What’s more perfect than thanksgiving day, when my gratitude gets to mingle with the gratitude of others, no where else but on Carol’s page :). So here we go, I am most grateful for

    1. The sun – It is that single light bulb that shines into the deepest parts of my soul. Its pure rays and slight scorch lets me know that rough times may scorch but hope and love will always shine through my darkest moments. I love the sun!

    2. My Guitar- with Six strings and a big body-whole, my guitar helps me express emotions and thoughts that surge over in my heart. More like my bestfriend, its proven to be my best means of expression. For an introvert like myself, What more can I ask for?

    3. Humans- I love people! I’m grateful I don’t live in this rough world alone. A 103 year old lady once said, “A stranger is simply a friend that I haven’t yet met”. At the heart of every human is a depth of love and cheer. Knowing this helps me appreciate the most basic things about people, especially a good SMILE! To me, there’s nothing as refreshing as a heartwarming smile from a stranger.

  59. Anjellica Evans says:

    1. My grandmother, god bless her in heaven, who wrote her life out and gave me the motivation to write.

    2. My sister, who is my biggest fan and cheerleader when I am discouraged.

    3. Twinkles, my little black pug, and constant companion while I work my butt off.

  60. Gina Duncan says:

    I’m grateful for:

    1. A yoga and meditation practice that helps with my chronic pain management.

    2. Losing my job because it gave me the opportunity to focus on writing.

    3. So very thankful my family gets to pursue our passions: my 15 year old son is the Nutcracker in his and another dance company this holiday season, my husband is building a following as a craft brewer, my oldest son is working as a graphic designer, and my 19 year old college freshman daughter is working with me on my new travel blog as I pursue travel writing and completing a novel.

  61. Tiffany says:

    This Thanksgiving is rough for me. On the surface, one could say I have every right to complain, and maybe I do. But in actuality I see a lot of silver lining, and I try to keep that in mind as I go through this challenging transition phase in my life.

    1.I am grateful for my baby due next month. The father is someone I loved yet broke my heart with betrayal. I really thought he loved me, but he just wanted to be with me as a means to his own ends. But after he left, I found myself unexpectedly pregnant when I thought it impossible due to a medical condition! Not having the dad around has been painful, but the pain has lessened with time. Feeling this baby grow inside of me and knowing that I’ll hold him soon has been a blessing to me.

    2. I’m far from home, as I’ve lived abroad for four years now. There’s no money for Thanksgiving dinner as it would consist largely of American imported food. But I have my daughter here with me and we’re doing a Harry Potter marathon! My mother is also here in Ghana with me, and she has been a wellspring of love and support. I’m grateful for them every day.

    3. I’m thankful for my overall growth in the past year. Living in a developing country while battling my self esteem demons and trust issues has been rough. But I have become wiser. I’ve developed fortitude, self appreciation, and patience. Patience! That’s a big one. I’ve had inspiration and hope flowing to me in waves lately. I believe it’s because I’m ready to step up in life. I’m grateful for the preparation that got me here.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  62. Wangui Gachagua says:

    I am grateful for being alive and in good health.

    I’m grateful for my daughter and how she’s turning out into a responsible independent young adult. It’s been a rough ride but wouldn’t trade it in for anything.

    I’m grateful for the internet. It has opened up doors for me outside the 9-5 job that I quit 12 months ago. I’m new to writing but it feels like home and I’m grateful to God for leading me here to find numerous resourceful people.

  63. Genya Johnson says:

    1. My dog Banjo. I rescued him and he has been my constant companion for the last five years
    2. My son who rings me every day to see what I have written.
    3. Being recently made redundant, now I can write full time. I would never have left work otherwise.

  64. M. R. Shupp says:

    I’m grateful for:

    1. A family who supports my writing, even though I am not seeing much fruit from it right now.

    2. The beautiful fall leaves and their bright colors.

    3. Pumpkin pie and whipped cream!

  65. Tom Bentley says:

    1. My mother, who I spoke to minutes ago, the person who showed me the pleasures of reading, which led to my life of writing. At 95, she still digs into life.

    2. The seeming boundlessness of language, which when spun with skill, weaves its ability to enthrall, terrify, tease and thrill.

    3. Pie, glorious pie.
    Tom Bentley recently posted…Is Good Enough Good Enough? “Settling” in Your Writing CareerMy Profile

  66. Kaila says:

    1. Health-My dad’s out of the hospital, everyone’s healthy, thank god.
    2. Family-extended and immediate, hubby and three kids.
    3. Writing family and clients!

  67. Sam Dadhwal says:

    1. I am grateful to be born at this time of history. Best time period to be alive as a human being in tens of thousands of years.
    2. I am grateful to live in the safest country on the planet and currently most diverse city of Toronto, Canada.
    3. Grateful to have three beautiful, responsible young adult children who are good human beings and responsible citizens of the country.

  68. I’m grateful for:

    1. My loving family and supportive friends.

    2. Pain-free moments from Endometriosis.

    3. My ability to write, determination to succeed and persistence to aggressively pursue my dream of being a published writer despite my challenges.

  69. Lisa says:

    1. A day job that includes insurance and time to work on writing
    2. A husband that helps out when I’m working
    3. Cats that make me happy

  70. Mieke says:

    I’m grateful:
    for the air I breathe
    for the love I give and receive
    for the neverending learning process of life

  71. Emily Omier says:

    Sure. I’m grateful for:

    1. My daughter
    2. My health and my daughter’s health
    2. A freelance writing career that gives me the flexibility to be present as a parent when needed while also giving me a professional outlet.. and a good income.

  72. Maddy Coates says:

    I am thankful for my friends,
    Old, new,
    Lost, and continued.
    I’m thankful for my Pen pal,
    For helping me write my flourishing book,
    I’m thankful for my amazing mother,
    For away from our evil father, my family she took.

  73. Esther Rabi says:

    I’m grateful for being able to earn a living at the dining room table where I can be in constant touch with my kids, although it’s driving me crazy to be in constant touch with my kids instead of earning a living.

  74. As a Freelance Writer, I am grateful for the freedom and flexibility I have to care for my family and live the life I want!

  75. Bud Steed says:

    1. I’m grateful for my wife and my kids. They are my greatest cheerleaders and the reason behind my drive to succeed.
    2. I’m grateful for my writing. It gives me joy to be able to create something with words that can stimulate an emotional response in another person.
    3. I’m grateful for my diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease and Myasthenia Gravis (sounds ridiculous, I know). Without it I might never have devoted myself to my writing, obtained a publishing contract, or published six books. I would have continued to drift through life on “auto pilot” instead of actually taking chances and living life. I guess it kind of saved me from a life of complacency.

  76. Siobhan says:

    I’ve long thought that ‘being grateful’ was accepting the cop-out prize from the Universe. Congratulations! You can’t do the work to change your situation, so sit tight and pretend you like it. It’s taken me a lot of work to change that opinion, so I present to you my list of Three Things I’m Most Grateful for:

    1. Pain

    I’m grateful that the hardest years of my life were during my second decade. Like Trixie Mattel, I know that each year can only be better than the last one. It means I’m surprised and delighted when things go well, and nonchalant and fairly neutral when they go badly. I’m also grateful for the way that pain prevents me from working a 9-5 with any success for longer than a probationary period. I have no ability to use a ‘proper job’ as a safety net. I MUST succeed, or I fail entirely. This is rather motivating.

    2. Being told ‘no’.

    I’m grateful for every ‘no’ that I’m told, because it lets me say ‘yes’ to something better. I’m grateful that I’ve been told ‘no’ enough times that I no longer take rejection as a personal attack, and that it’s become an unpleasant part of my working life, rather than a Judgement from On High. I’m grateful that other people have shown me the correct way to maintain a boundary, and this has encouraged me to be protective and proactive about my own boundaries. Being rejected has forced me to look deeper into myself and to constantly improve. All those ‘no’s have also taught me to be more efficient and courageous – I’ve been rejected for jobs I didn’t want to do, so what I have got to loose if I only apply for ones I do? I’m also astoundingly grateful to have realised that every time I was told ‘no’ about something I really wanted, it turned out I’d dodged a bullet – from poor relationships, to poor career choices, to bad, bad jobs.

    3. Difficulty

    I’m grateful that my illness co-conspire to make me low on energy and pain tolerance. It has made me realise at a young age that life is difficult, but it is also entirely what you make of it. I can’t go out every week, so it forces me to only keep the best of friends close to me. I can’t work myself to the bone, so it forces me to work for tasks I really like, to be efficient, to command higher pay. I can’t do lots of physical tasks, so I can’t buy stuff I then have to fix or clean, or run around after other people with no return. Every single piece of my life, I’m forced to choose the very best part. Because I only have ten notches on my energy bar instead of twenty, I don’t look back at the years and wonder where I spent five of them everyday and come up blank.

    I have been forced into a life that taught me how to be resilient, courageous, to be at peace under fire, to strive to be better everyday, but also to love myself regardless. I have also been taught how to be kind, that generosity is not a virtue but essential, but also how to mind my boundaries and ensure that I do not give away too much of myself. I have been taught how to ask for help, and feel comfortable receiving it.

    My experiences have been like a whetstone, scraping away all of the jagged bits of personality and leaving me honed and ready.

    I am grateful for all the bad in life, because it has taught me how to catch the good parts, rather than settle for the easy and mediocre.
    Siobhan recently posted…The Benefits of OnyxMy Profile

  77. Anne Wayman says:

    I’m grateful for so much done on my behalf, like roads, the Internet, clean, running water and flush toilets.

    I’m grateful that somehow I truly have been given a gift of being able to write.

    I’m grateful for my family, including kids, adults, friends, family online and off – and of course for cats

  78. I am grateful for being alive at a time like this.
    I am grateful for all the wonderful online couches
    I am gratful to the the brains behind internet
    I am gratful for knowing Carol Tice
    I am gratful for being a writer
    I am grateful to God

  79. Laura says:

    1. I’m grateful for freelance writing, because for the first time in years I get to spend time with my family without having to ask for time off, checking email, or being stressed about getting an issue to the printer right before Christmas. I’m grateful I can actually enjoy the holidays instead of just trying to survive them.

    2. I’m grateful for the healthy, loving relationships I have with my family, and that it’s always a joyful experience when we get together.

    3. I’m grateful for my husband and the hard work he puts in at his job so that he can support us while I continue to build up my freelance client base.

  80. Chanoa Tarle says:

    1. My super inspiring muse – my husband.
    2. Den 2X elevating my business.
    3. The ability to live out my dreams and design my life with a freelance career.

  81. Peggy Jurcisin says:

    1. Surviving auto accident, which led to writing career
    2. Great health, enabling me to living on my sailboat
    3. Knowledge/lessons learned as a Freelance Writer Den member

  82. Sue Chehrenegar says:

    What I am grateful for right now:

    1. Lots of time in which to write; fewer distractions. (My husband is out of town.)

    2. An unexpected gift; one client has offered to pay me more for what I am sending to him.

    3. Today I will have another chance to enjoy time with of my 5 grandchildren. One of them is receiving honors-level instructions on writing (at a 6th grade plus level).

  83. Annie says:

    1. I’m grateful for being made redundant more than once to force me into freelancing.
    2. I’m grateful for my dog who forces me out of the house at least twice a day, every day, to remind me that there’s a real world with real people outside.
    3. I’m grateful for my fiance getting a job after nearly 3 years unemployed so that I can pick and choose my clients to raise my rates – no more content mills!

  84. Peggy Jurcisin says:

    1. Surviving auto accident, which led to writing career
    2. Great health, living on my sailboat
    3. Knowledge/lessons learned as a Freelance Writer Den member

  85. Nancy says:

    I’m grateful for the opportunity to write for a living.
    I’m grateful for the beauty that surrounds me daily.
    I’m grateful for learning (however belatedly) to let go of what was and what might be in favor of what is now, today.

  86. Nicci says:

    I’m grateful for being a human being on earth and for being able to take part in this sensual multi – voiced landscape.

    I’m grateful for blogs like this one, which motivate me to share my writing with others.

    I’m grateful to be able to share, converse and dialogue with others. It might just help to create a different world.

  87. Anna Mouton says:

    1. Seven in the morning. I am at the dairy, looking into the enormous brown eyes of a glossy Jersey cow. Soon after, I am driving home with a bucket of warm milk. I am grateful to live near a dairy, to support a local farmer and to know where my food comes from.

    2. On a still, clear evening, I walk along the Kleinriver with Hobbes, my Golden Retriever. The smell of water is in the air. A Giant Kingfisher alights in a tall gum tree. His raucous call rends the quiet. I am grateful to live in this small rural town, where nature is always close.

    3. Graeme, my partner, tells me that I am epic. Whenever I clash with the world, he takes my part, even when he knows that I am wrong. Which, by the way, is often. He fixed my iPhone three times after I first dropped it and later stood on it. He hugs me when I cry. I am grateful every day to have him.

  88. Emily Nelson says:

    I’m a brand new freelance writer, and I have so much to be grateful for.

    1) I’m grateful that so many creative, hard-working, and inspiring freelance writers have made their best advice about how to succeed at this gig available for free online. It’s all right there, available to anyone who’s motivated enough to look. How many other industries have that?

    2) I’m grateful for my past (never thought I’d say those words!). The good times were good, to be sure, but these days I’m especially thankful for the bad and the ugly. The challenges I’ve faced have helped me figure out what really matters to me and develop empathy for others.

    3) I’m grateful for all the ways I don’t fit in (another one that never would have made my list in my younger years). As an American expat living in Taiwan, not a day goes by without me being reminded that the things I take for granted are not universal. From strangers taking selfies with me literally behind my back (yeah, I’m 6’3”) to embarrassing linguistic snafus, I’m forced to consider what the world looks like through someone else’s eyes every day. It’s a pretty fruitful setup for a writer!

    Happy Thanksgiving to all. May your gratitude enrich your life and the lives of those around you. ❤️

  89. Karin says:

    1.I am grateful for the ability to earn a great income working from home. I have two autoimmune diseases and to have to be somewhere from 8-5 each day would be challenging, to say the least. Working from home gives me the flexibility I need to work when my energy is strong and rest when I need to. It also gives me the ability to eat healthier and squeeze time in for a walk or other exercise.
    2. I am grateful for the support and encouragement of other writers who give so much to the writing community, including Carol Tice and Ed Gandia. The Writer’s Den is an awesome resource.
    3. I am grateful for my yoga practice and the ability to share yoga with others. We live in a world full of hurt and yet, each week my yoga friends show up. They show up for themselves and for each other. Their sense of community is strong and in spite of health challenges, kid challenges, and political challenges, they show up each week and walk out feeling a little more centered. They inspire me and I’m honored to lead them in practice each week.

  90. Jenifer says:

    Top three things I am grateful for:

    1. Gift of life – It’s what I thank God for every single day. With it, I can do many worthy deeds that may add value to other’s lives.

    2. My family – for raising me to the person I am today, for their unwavering support in every decision I make and being a continuous provider for my needs even during those times I became unemployed and can’t provide for myself.

    3. The opportunity to be part of this contest – I’m a newbee in freelance writing and in search of opportunities where I could pursue my interest in writing and make a breakthrough in my career. I’m grateful to God for leading me to this site.

  91. Ellen Kolb says:

    I’m grateful for having a gig with a reliable client with whom I’m thrilled to be working. No jobs clicks on all cylinders all the time, but this one comes close.

    I’m grateful that I have the autonomy to seek out and serve new clients. I’m excited at the potential for future projects.

    I’m grateful to able to structure my time in such a way that I can work on non-revenue-generating projects. (NaNoWriMo rebel here.) No one’s standing over my shoulder looking at a watch when I shift away from work assignments.

  92. Tara Brophy says:

    My tribe – physical and virtual.

    Coffee – because, well – coffee.

    Today’s 5th grade Thanksgiving concert (that was, strangely, all gospel music) and the mother sitting at the back of the room who broke the light barrier when her kid passed out on the top row of the risers. One minute she was seated in the last row – the next minute she was leaping across the stage, arms outstretched. She caught him before he hit the floor. The kids never stopped singing.

  93. Teresa Cuervo says:

    As a freelance translator and working from home, the work-life balance and the flexibility of my job is what I am most grateful. The balance may tip sometimes from one extreme to the other, yet the ability of doing my job from anywhere is what I value the most. The freedom this provides is beyond measure.

    With freedom comes responsibility and to be your accountable only to yourself is also of value . Although the struggle is real sometimes, only you take the rewards of all your efforts.

    Finally, I know that I provide a service of value. Within many communities here in the US, language and cultural barriers are extensive and with limited access to linguistic resources in many areas. I feel fortunate to be the missing link for this communication barrier.

  94. Carol Tice says:

    Wow, I love this contest already! Fun entries. Can’t wait to pick winners next week!

  95. Claire says:

    Living in a safe country where I can write freely and without fear. Good, free education for my children, who can learn to read and write and also learn how lucky they are in comparison to many children in the world. Fairtrade dark chocolate with chilli, so that I can, you know, help families far away to earn enough to educate their children too.

  96. 1. Flexibility: Being able to stay at home with my daughter when she was growing up and being home if she got sick or able to attend school events without having to ask permission from an employer.

    2. Accountability and Profitability: Not being accountable to anyone but myself for the work I choose to take on – how much and which clients to work with, and being the master of my income – I don’t have to ask for a raise I choose to raise my rates or charge what rates I feel are fair.

    3. Ability: I can reach achieve more than I thought possible doing what I LOVE, learning so much and meeting so many interesting people every single day. No one holds me back. I am in charge of my destiny.

  97. As a social anxiety sufferer who prefers to work from home, I’m most grateful for:

    1) E-mail
    2) Online Freelance Business Courses
    3) Quickbooks Self-Employed

  98. Megan Nye says:

    Here are three, things for which I’m grateful as a freelance writer:

    3. Having the power to increase my earnings — without having to beg a traditional boss for a raise

    2. Being able to choose the clients with whom I work — and refuse the clients with whom I don’t want to work

    1. Having real-world and online friends who respect what I do as a legitimate business — instead of asking me when I’m getting a real job . . . or commenting that it’s wonderful I’m home to have dinner ready for my husband when he returns from work!
    Megan Nye recently posted…How to Write a Blog Post: A Step-by-Step GuideMy Profile

  99. I’m grateful for being in good health, having a roof over my head and being able to work from the comfort of my home.