• Marilyn Gardner Woods

On first impression...

Connie and I sat next to each other, both with coffee in hand, just before the workshop on writing articles for magazines started at ten o’clock. At the front of the room, a lovely young woman sat with a collection of glossy magazines, many food oriented, spread in a semi-circle on the desk before her. We learned later that she had written articles that were published in each of the magazines.


Surely, she could teach us a thing, or two Connie and I agreed.


Felicia sat prim and properly straight with her chin jaunting slightly upward; her golden tresses gathered neatly into a low side bun like I had seen Meghan Markle wear. One loose strand perfectly tucked behind her right ear. Connie and I agreed our teacher was quite attractive. Her soft-spoken-ness contributed to her loveliness. She had a bit of an aloofness about her that increased her credibility in my mind. Her black ballet flats and slim black ankle pants adorned her long legs which were crossed Kate Middleton style neatly under the desk. Her blouse, open at the throat, was silk. Grey. Silver-ish.


Felicia instructed and did not disappoint. She offered encouragement and information. So much so that at the end of the session, I inquired about private consultations. In a reserved manner, she instructed me to send my inquiry to her email, at which point she reached into her designer clutch and handed me her business card.




At Extraordinary Desserts ten days later, her suggestion for a meeting place, Felicia sat engaged in some paperwork at a table by the window when I entered. Her half full generous white cup of latte sat nearby. I bought myself a cup of un-doctored coffee and sat down. In a business-like manner, she asked a series of questions, which I nervously answered.

“Has your writing been published?”

“Who do you see as your readers?”

I chastised myself for letting this woman four decades younger inhibit me.

Didn’t work. I continued to flip and flop, doing my best to act like I had a plan.


When the late morning sun began to beam brightly in Felicia’s eyes which were lined perfectly in a deep sapphire blue, she suggested we move our meeting to another table, which we did. At that point, she placed her cellphone face down on our new table, revealing its vivid coral-colored case. Divine. As I fiddled with my collar, I felt a frumpiness invade my consciousness.


As Felicia reached for her coffee mug, I was struck by her luminous lipstick, which not only didn’t leave her imprint on the lip of the coffee cup like mine, but it was also the exact same color as her phone case. Luscious, velvety deep persimmon colored. I commented. She demurred, “Really? I hadn’t noticed.”


It wasn’t later that evening when I hit Add Friend under her name that I got to know another side of Felicia. There she was, in living color on Facebook, her blond hair with darkened roots slicked back, a sexy smile on her deep wine colored lips, her arms flung around a burly, dark haired, bearded handsome guy. She wore a sexy tank top; her bare shoulder covered in a large tattoo--a young woman's image- blond with pouty lips - and a floral design. She appeared ecstatic!




I began to think I could learn a lot from this woman…

Never been more right in my life.


Since our meeting which happened four years ago, Felicia and I have worked together electronically on my projects. She is approachable and quite down-to-earth. Did I say accomplished and tech-savvy? And lucky me, she continues mentoring me. I have time traveled forward in leaps and bounds. Such value in collaboration.



From Felicia, who I now consider a good friend, I learned all I needed to know about the path to publication of my first book. She provides regular tips and hints about internet issues, and most importantly, she developed my website and continues to update it.

Everybody needs this kind of brilliant thirty-something in their lives!


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