Building Bridges

In 1820, ferry services began crossing the Pacific Ocean from Marin County to San Francisco Bay. By 1860, said services were operating on a set public schedule. The business was booming, but competition was fierce. The Sausalito Land and Ferry Company launched in 1867, and it because of it’s reliability and consistency, it took the vast majority of the business and eventually became known as the Golden Gate Ferry Company. By the 1920’s, it was the most prominent and profitable ferry company in the world.

And still, the demand was simply greater than could be met. The need for an even more efficient way to cross the bay arose, and it was met by one of the most architecturally ambitious projects to that date–builScreenshot (21)ding a nearly mile-long bridge to connect the two land masses. Many thought it couldn’t be done, but in 1937 the Golden Gate Bridge opened to the public, and since then it has been one of the most dazzling bridges in existence because it defied what seemed impossible. The iconic bridge encapsulates integrity, strength, and an American drive to defy the odds.

I didn’t realize how big of a deal this bridge was until lately. You see, my dear readers, I have a good friend who is in college learning to be an architect, and she recently finished a five-week long assignment of building a bridge model. She worked on it many more hours than should be humanly possible considering the schedule of a college student, but the end result wScreenshot (19)as simply one of the most delicate, breath-taking things I had ever seen in my life–a wooden small-scale model of what promises to be a stunning but functional bridge if ever build. A couple pictures of her work are attached. The only way I can describe it is by saying it looks unbelievable, like hand-crafting work of that precision and beauty should not be possible–a true work of art.

So maybe we aren’t all blessed with the ability to literally design, conceptualize, and create these beautiful bridges, but still we are capable of building our own bridges every day. A bridge is simply something that connects Point A to Point B and helps somebody move between the two, so I argue that we should all be doing that anyway, right? If we are at Point A, and we see our goals, dreams, and ambitions at Point B, how can we reach them?

It’s time to take this to another level, my friends. I started thinking about this even further, and this is what I concluded: There are two kinds of people in this regard: There are the watchers, Screenshot (20)people who are content to sit down in the grass of Point A, stare across the bay, and longingly watch Point B, gazing upon the happiness and prosperity that will never be known. Then there are the bridge-builders. These are the people that know where they stand and not only can see their dreams of a better future, but are also willing to build the bridge that will get them there. This means putting in work, practice, prayer, and anything else that will help realize those dreams. That’s how you build a bridge, even if you aren’t a striving architect. What kind of person are you? Will you emptily dream of a better tomorrow, or will you build the bridge that will get you there?

Build bridges, my friends.

— Jesse Haynes

The ‘Parable’ of the Farmer and His Sons

Readers, I hope all is well! First, let me start by saying Creepers 2 has arrived! Yay! If you would like to buy a copy, you can click on my new “buy a book” tab above (unless you are reading this in mobile view, in which case you need to click on the menu bar).

Also, I wanted to let all of you know that my newest Author Update YouTube Video is up! My friend Tristan and I went on a hunt for sasquatch nearby my house, and we discovered some crazy stuff! Check it out HERE to have your view of bigfoot’s existence permanently confirmed.

And I want to share a story with you. This is an original. Think of it as something of a parable with absolutely no moral lesson, ok? Without further ado, here we go:

Two cowsOne time in the near-to-distant past there lived a farmer. The fact that the farmer was a farmer is in no way symbolic or significant to the story, so get that out of your head. Being a farmer is just cool, that’s all.

The farmer had a first born son and he was like, “Wow, now I have a kid. He can help me plant corn and stuff. Corn is cool.” So as the boy grew up, he was taken around the farm, sharing his corn seed-things with the earth and watching them take root.

Now the farmer never expected much of the first son–in fact he thought of walking around the farm wChickenith him as nothing more than a recreational hobby. However, it turns out that the first son did much better at planting corn than the farmer ever expected.  His friends showed up at the farm, watching the boy and proud of the farmer for raising such a successful corn-sower.

He drew quite a crowd, and then the question came: will there be another son?

The farmer, realizing how much the first son had done for him, went on ahead and had another son, exclaiming, “Yee-doggies” the day the second son was born, as all farmers do. He then looked out his barn window and added: “Wow, what a delightful chicken.”  He taught the second son how to sow seeds as well, using the lessons he had learned from the first son and putting all of the talent, thought, and work he could dream up into the second. The farmer was much more proud of the second son, feeling that the first came when the was too young to teach lessons of the farm very well.

The second son learned not only to plant seeds, but also drive tractors, lasso cattle, and do other farmer stuff, and it made the farmer happy.

“Nifty,” he said. “I personally like the second son way the heck more than the first, so I want to take him all around the big, wide farm.”

The end.  That’s as deep as I get.

So what does this mean? It means that the farm is the world, metaphorically, and my two books are my sons. I never thought the first book would be as successful as it is, and I am super fortunate to have just released another. I am even more proud of the sequel because I think it is a more mature read, and I can’t wait to share it with the world. I will just end by saying this: everybody check out Creepers 2! I think it will please!

And remember, my dad always told me that you should never walk through a rainstorm in socks.

Press on, my friends.

– Jesse Haynes

Steps in the Right Direction

Greetings friends, readers, and others who happen to be reading this!

How are you doing? It has been a long time! Did you miss me? Probably not, but I can at least pretend, right? Anyway, I will tell you a little bit about what I have been up to, and it’s a happy story, let me tell you. The semester began with dark days–dark days my friends. I didn’t have any time to do anything apart from study, eat, and sleep. That was literally it! Devastating, right?

Well here is the good news! I can now study, eat, sleep, and be a human being! I actually have the time of day now to do a few things that I view as recIMG_20160201_134717-1reational, hot diggity dog. To be more specific, I am playing on a co-ed basketball team with one of the dorms on campus, Hardesty Hall. I know what you’re thinking: “Jesse, you commute. You can’t play with a dorm.” Well… turns out you’re right! The team of 12 has 10 people from the dorm and 2 stowaways, myself included, and we’re leading the charge to an intermural championship, a free shirt, and eternal glory. No, we haven’t actually played a game yet, but it’s coming. Pictured above is the “Hardesty Hall Ballers” (lame name, I know) at a team dinner.

Next point of interest: the demand for YouTube content. My number of YouTube subscribers has doubled over the past 2 months, and I love hearing from you all about what I should post next. Here is something I have heard a lot: “Jesse, at the end of Episode 8 you said you and a friend were going to look for bigfoot.” It’s coming, and soon, my friends! Rest assured that within the next month, we will find bigfoot (or at least look very hard) and document the thrilling adventure in the way of a 10 minute video. I also have a few more ideas for videos in my head, but I would love to hear from you if you have any more!

Thanks to all of you who constantly inspire me, every day. Where would I be without you?

Press on!

– Jesse Haynes



A New Year of Jesse Haynes Author

Readers, I hope you are all having an incredible 2016! Creepers 2 is nearly with us, and I hope you are all as excited as me.  I am so stoked to get the conclusion of my first series in your hands, and especially to hear the feedback from all you! I write my books to tell stories to all of Haynes_revision (1)you, and hearing from you is the most rewarding thing. (Especially if it is good feedback, ha.)

Bad news, friends, this is also the beginning of a new semester of college, and that means I am starting 5 new classes. My schedule this semester will involve a TON of writing, and that means I’m not exactly positive how frequently I will be blogging. Fear not, readers, because I will definitely be working, writing, and blogging as much as humanly possible. It’s not like I have much of a social life outside of basketball anyway….

But this is the end of my short post, friends. I wanted to let you know that you are all on my mind, that I won’t forget you, that I will be blogging as much as I can, and I’m looking forward to 2016 with all of you. Let’s see how far we can take Jesse Haynes Author, deal?

Cheers to a good New Year!

– Jesse Haynes

‘Tis the Season

Readers, how is everybody doing? Good? Fantastic. First and foremost, I want to give an enormous thank you to all of you, for all the support you have showed me throughout 2015. With as much end-of-the-semester crunching as I need to do (not talking about the ab exercise, although I should probably be doing that too), my bloggz-christmasing time has taken a serious hit.  But who cares! You guys deserve something to read, and since I have so many fantastic subscribers, here it is.

But first, if you haven’t already done so, check out my latest YouTube video HERE. It features both  basketball trick shots and the Grant Eastman, so it’s definitely a good time.

And as I’m sure you have probably noticed, Thanksgiving is over and Christmas is approaching. It’s that time of year where you don’t z-chirstmasknow whether you should be eating leftover turkey or hanging up
decorative lights. Still, regardless of any indecision this time of year might induce, this is a majestic time of year – probably even my favorite time of year. The NBA season is in full swing, the NFL playoffs draw near, and the fantasy football playoffs draw even nearer than that. People are inexplicably nicer to one another, seemingly compelled by an unwritten rule that Christmas season (it’s funny how one holiday has it’s own “season”) should bring joy and generosity to the world.

And I wouldn’t have it any other way. This is the time of year that gives us a moment to pause, step back, and think about the blessings we have in life. As humans, I feel like it is natural to get absorbed in the rush of life and begin to want what we can’t have, and then even complain to ourselves and others about hochristmas_presents_wrappedw unfair life can be.  The way I see it,is if my biggest problem this week is
if I dropped my fantasy football matchup by 6 points, I’m going to be ok.

So, dear readers, I encourage you to count your blessings as Christmas season nears. This is the ultimate time of consumerism, but keep in mind that a $300 pair of shoes or the latest, smartest phone on the market shouldn’t make you any happier than spending time with friends and family this Christmas, and amongst the hustle and bustle of the end-of-year sales remember that Jesus is the reason for the season, after all.

I’m blessed with health, family, friends, and a sovereign Heavenly Father, just to name a few. What are you blessed with? I hope you get everything on your Christmas list this year, my friends, but I also hope you remember just how fortunate we all are. Maybe even consider doing something nice for someone who is less fortunate. Kindness makes the world go round.

Push forward.

– Jesse Haynes

The Cost of a Dollar

I have a great idea! I’m going to take two completely separate ideas and mash them together in an attempt to give them some sort of cohesion and make a point. AKA this is my Greek philosopher impersonation.

So anyway, happy November! One month left and then we will be changing to another calendrical year. How exciting! With November comes three things that I care about: the NBA season starts to gain momentum, it is epilepsy awareness month… and Thanksgiving. As much as I’d like to blog about LeBron, I’m going to write about the latter of the two.

And now I’m going to talk about rap. Love it or hate it, rap is a very expressive form of art. I will be the first to admit that I don’t like many rappers, and I definitely don’t like explicit rap, but lately I listened to a song that really got me thkendrick-lamar-press-2015-black-and-white-billboard-650inking. The song is by Kendrick Lamar, entitled “How Much a Dollar Costs.” The point of the song is Kendrick, who is a rich and influential rapper, encounters a homeless man begging him for a dollar. Kendrick, who has a religious background, acts contrary to how he knows he should (even when the beggar asks if Kendrick has recently “opened up Exodus 14”, which offers a lesson on humility). He continually asks himself “how much a dollar cost” throughout the song, pondering the true value of money. When confronted with the beggar he becomes angry, claiming, “Crumbs and pennies, I need all of mine,” and that “Every nickel is mine to keep.” Basically, Kendrick completely snaps on the poor beggar.

The homeless man then quickly pulls a 180 on Kendrick, making a statement about how people should treat one another. He reveals that in face he is actually God in disguise, alluding to another parable of the Bible. He answers, “You’re lookin’ at the Messiah, the son of Jehovah, the higher power, The choir that spoke the word, the Holy Spirit, the nerve of Nazareth, and I’ll tell you just how much a dollar cost: The price of having a spot in Heaven. Embrace your loss, I am God.”

So the point of the song is that earthly wealth is never more important the eternal salvation, and people should always be thankful for what they have and willing to share if they have enough. Kendrick demonstrates that the figurative cost of a dollar can be much more expensive than the actual value of the dollar, and it is a very impactful song.

So, all of that being said, let me conclude: As Thanksgiving approaches, a time to express our gratitude for the things we have in our life, pay special attention to how blessed we truly are. Remember the priorities in your life and why they are important to you. Feel free to leave commentary/feedback on my post below. Keep pressing on, my friends.

– Jesse Haynes

The First Chapter

Readers! I’m back! How are you guys/gals/extremely intellectually advanced house pets/alien lifeforms who intercept my blog ? Good? Excellent. I am good as well, but I am also insanely busy.

For those who don’t know, college has a officially started. I am enrolled as a freshman at the University of Tulsa. Great school. zzGreat professors. LOTS of work. It’s like they don’t realize I’m trying to write a book (or four), maintain a blog, send out newsletters, and film my vlogs.  (Check out my newest one HERE!) Anyways, I will post as frequently as possible, but don’t show up on my doorstep if it isn’t every two weeks exactly. Unless you want to help me write some papers, and if that is the case, come on! The more, the merrier.

All joking aside, I am really enjoying this first chapter in a whole new book of my life. My professors are all fantastic, brilliant people, and I have made a couple new friends, doubling my total. (Another joke, I can’t refrain!) All in all, I feel very blessed to be attending school here, and still managing to write this post to share with you all, dear readers.  Will I regret taking this ten minutes of my life to blog? Probably. Should I be doing something else at the moment? Definitely. But it is still worth it now because I am getting to connect with every single one of you! That makes it worthwhile.

So updates on me: Besides starting school, I recently finished Project Alpha (I love it), and I am preparing to speak at the EnclyoMedia conference in October! (Click HERE to read more) This means more speech writing and memorizing. Fun stuff.

That is pretty much all the time I have, my readers, so let me leave you with this. Your life is a library, full of books. My newest book began as I started college, and I want to make sure that I “write” something that I am going to be proud of. No matter where your life is taking you, make sure that your books are something that you would be proud to have your children, friends, or family read. Stay positive and press forward.

Until next time,

Jesse Haynes


Dealing with the Stress

Before I begin this post, I have two huge points of interest that we need to touch on.

Numbero Uno: If you (somehow) haven’t already seen the big news, CREEPERS 2 is coming! I’m expecting a release in early 2016. Spread the news using #creepers2 or #mansworstenemy (the subtitle). My next blog post is going to have more info about the sequel.

Numero Dos: I have starting making video blogs (aka Vlogs) and posting them to my site and my YouTube account. The first might have been kinda boring, but the second may or may not be this crazy rap about graduation, complete with a dance. Stay tuned. Make sure to watch the first by clicking on my last post, “First Vlog.”

Jesse 023eNow, I want to talk about stress for a bit. Life is full of stress. Stress is unavoidable. Some people stress over completely insignificant things. Other people stress over huge things. Whichever type of person you are, stress is something that you need to at least learn to cope with.  Over the past couple months, with graduation and college enrollment approaching (not to mention AP Tests, those are terrifying. I seriously bet in Hell you just sit in extremely fiery rooms and take College Board tests for eternity), the stress has been there. Fortunately, I came up with three strategies to help me cope with the stress, and I want to share them with you.

1). Have confidence in yourself. Know that you will be able to accomplish any challenge that you face, and make sure to plan you schedule to allow time for working on the projects causing the stress.

2). Have confidence in your friends. Even when you are at what seems like the lowest, darkest points in your life, rely on your friends and family to have your back. They will always help you in a time of need, and never forget that. Even if it is something as simple as just offering advice (I have a friend that offers great advice, and that can change my mood and lift my spirits radically), the support of friends can mean the world sometimes.

3). Have faith in God. He always has your and will never give you too much to take. Deuteronomy 31:6 says “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

If you can adhere to all 3 of those points, there is literally nothing that you can’t do. You might still get stressed occasionally, but know that things will be all right! Take a deep breath and relax.

That’s all for today. The next post (June 1st) will come with a contest and some sweet prizes, so check back. Until then, dear subscribers, I wish you the best.

– Jesse

Big Plans!

Guys! I have some exciting news! Some ENORMOUS news! What is this news, you ask?

Well… I’m not going to give anything away yet, but let me say this: It is going to be HUGE20150423_204937! So big that it deserves a post of its own, so for the meantime you will have to wait, sit around, and shake with anticipation.

But for the meantime, I have some pretty big news to share, and it is about  this summer: This summer there is going to be a contest, hosted by me, and the prize is going to be something that I think everybody will find to be pretty  awesome!

And now, I want to share a little bit about a pretty awesome event in my life and what I learned from it.  I recently received the State Superintendent’s Art Award, along with three other students from my school (Justin Farr – vocalist, Jericho Stratton – vocalist, and Alex Chevalier – band). We went as a group to Guthrie, Oklahoma with our principal, Mr. Parker, and one of the highlights of the night came before the awards show even began.

While exploring Guthrie, my group stopped in Bryan Berline’s Double Stop Fiddle Shop. Berline is a very accomplished bluegrass artist who20150423_162655 settled in Guthrie. We talked to him for a while, and then Mr. Parker, who is a very talented musician, asked if Berline would consider playing some music. Things quickly escalated to an awesome jam session: Berline played the fiddle, Mr. Parker the guitar, and Jericho on the bass. They played song after song and everyone sung along, and then afterwards we were given a tour of his private concert hall that has played host to several bluegrass greats, and contemporary bands like Mumford and Sons.

What I learned was that excitement and inspiration can come from the most completely unexpected places. When I was headed to Guthrie I never expected such as awesome time before the awards, but that was a completely unexpected blessing.

Later that night I also presented Joy Hofmeister, Oklahoma’s Superintendent of Education, with a copy of Creepers, which is the picture seen above.


The Struggle

Senior year is overrated. I have officially decided that is the case. It is the busiest I have ever been, and it isn’t even the school work. That’s not bad. I’m ahead in all of my classes. The real struggle is finding time to do everything that needs done OUTSIDE of the classroom. There is applying for colleges (which includes writing a countless number of essays), and then once you get accepted by those colleges you realize that you need money to fund the collegiate life (especially when your intended colleges costs $52K a year) you end up applying for every scholarship you can get your hands on. I know most seniors aren’t traveling to promote a book, but that is the highlight of my year. The point I’m trying to make is that I’m insanely busy.

The most important thing I have learned in senior year has been time management, and I think that this is something that everybody needs to learn. I always joke with my mother that she is too much of a planner (she can probably tell me what I’m going to eat for dinner rolex-submariner-116613ln-02on November 24th),  but I have recently realized how important of a life skill being a good planner is. Things have escalated to the point of me planning out my week on my iPod every Sunday, and typing a detailed schedule for each day every morning. This has very much increased my productivity, and if you aren’t already a planner, I would very much encourage you to try it too.

I know that not everybody is a high school senior, but I also know that 90% of the people I know would benefit from time managing  if they don’t already do so. So this is your challenge: upon finishing reading this post, plan out your next week. What will you be doing each day. If you are a student, do you have any assignments due? Throughout the week, keep referring back to your schedule, and see the difference. I can almost guarantee that you will be less stressed and in a better mood all week long, because I really believe that I have noticed the same change. So ladies and gentlemen, get to planning! Have a good week!

– Jesse Haynes