“Dorothy… You’re Not In Kansas Anymore”

My first alarm sounds at 5:57 am. Bleary eyed I press snooze before another one goes off at 6, then 6:05. I always set multiple alarms on two phones because I kind of have a problem getting up. I mean the early wake up call is jarring to anyone who didn’t come home from work until after midnight. And the anticipated sleep deprivation subconsciously jacked up my dreams.

It’s Tuesday and it’s the start of my unexpected three day “weekend.” So I’m headed home to Maryland. I made the decision and bought my train ticket less than twenty-four hours before, text a few friends and family and spent about twenty minutes total between Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning packing a duffle bag. THIS is my new reality.

I didn’t just get a new job in Philadelphia, I got a new life!

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Dear Viola…THANK YOU!

Am I the only one who woke up this morning with a little extra pep in my step? I couldn’t stop thinking about last night’s Emmy awards! I’m not even going to lie, I watch award shows primarily for the fashion. Last night was different. When Regina King, Uzo Aduba and Viola Davis received their statues I was cheering from my little makeshift bed in my empty apartment! History was made! My theme music just got a little louder.

I could go on and on about why this was all things amazing, wonderful, gratifying, etc. But Viola Davis said it best in her succinct yet powerful speech.

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Gut-Wrenching Intrusion: The Worst Part Of The Job

The bell has been ringing so much you consider just leaving the door unlocked so people, who seem like they’re coming in droves, can just let themselves in. You open the door and initially it may be hard to find the right words. Saying “hi” is expected and signifies a sense of normalcy, except this day is anything but that. Their eyes mirror the puffiness in yours. The pause and subsequent embrace is a language all its own. What exactly do you say? Where do you begin? Does it even matter? Words may give temporary solace to that one particular moment, but it’s an inevitable delay to the all consuming grief you have only begun to process.

Cakes, pies and casseroles fill the refrigerator. Flowers begin to mount on your dining room table. From opening your home to guests to making the necessary arrangements, there’s just so much to do…to process…to take in.

Your doorbell rings again. This time it’s not a relative, neighbor, pastor or friend,

“Hello, my name is Aundrea Cline-Thomas. I’m a reporter with NewsChannel 5.”

It’s me…

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PR Pearls: Journo Jewels from the PR Perspective

The relationship between public relations professionals and journalists can be everything from symbiotic to downright contentious.

PR Pearls was born out of frequent newsroom bemoaning and my participation in PR panels at every step along my career.

My last post PR Pearls: Keeping It 100 sparked a response from a friend who has transitioned into PR after spending years in the newsroom. They wanted to provide another perspective from their unique position. So I agreed to post their remarks and have chosen not to edit it. I thought I was “Keeping It 100” in my last post but they’re keeping it all the way really with brutal honesty! I appreciate this perspective and I hope you do too!


As a recent traitor to the newsroom,

I have to admit that I have learned so much since crossing over to the PR world.

I remember sitting on “Getting to Know the Media” panels sharing knowledge on how to get a story covered, but never attended a “Getting to Know the PR Professionals” panel. In hindsight, it was quite one sided. So in an effort to share what I have learned, Aundrea is allowing me to write the flipside of “PR Pearls.”

So I present “Journo Jewels”

Four (maybe five) beliefs that I held as a journalist that were wrong.

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Images In The Media: My First Keynote Address

I’m going to be honest emceeing and moderating events are more my speed. After all my days aren’t spent speaking to a crowd, but instead a camera and a photographer. So that’s why when my friend Erin (that’s Dr. Lynch-Alexander to you) sent me a text while I was at work a few weeks ago, I paused:

Erin: Sooooooooo would you be willing to serve as a keynote for my chapter’s scholarship luncheon March 28.
Me: I’m not an important person.

I mentioned it to my friend Faith, who is a producer at the station, as she passed by my desk a short time later. And she said without skipping a beat, “You better let the Lord use you!” And then she put some stank on it, “we are…what…stepping out of our… comfort zone. Isn’t that what you said?” (Or something like that.) She was referring to this blog that I posted a few weeks ago.

(Pause: You know you have real friends, really good friends, when they can put you in your place in a blink of an eye! No is not an option. No tiptoeing in my camp! No ma’am.)

She was right! So I got my phone to text Erin…

Me: I’ll call you on my way home.

(a little later she replied- in response to all of my texts)

Erin: Whatever!!!! Hahaha! You’re important to me! That’s all that matters.

So I agreed to give my first ever keynote address at the Zeta Phi Beta Scholarship Tea this past Saturday. I was asked to discuss images in the media and I could say whatever I wanted. So it started consuming me. (There are very few things I’m lukewarm about. Either I’m all in or all out.) I started thinking about what I wanted to say while cooking, brushing my teeth, driving to work, day in and day out.

The goal wasn’t to keep it cute, but to keep it real from my perspective.

So this is what I came up with:

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