How I find encouragement despite all I’ve been through

Just go for it. That’s literally my motto. I am the type of person that once I set my mind on something it’s damn near impossible to change it. I am flexible and susceptible to suggestion during the decision process, but concrete once my mind is made up. This has helped me achieve so much in my life despite so many failures. Even the failures I view as tools that taught me how to move forward.

Today I want to focus on the things I have accomplished. It’s not about bragging look at me see what I did. It’s about finding your own strength. My goal is to encourage you to say hey maybe I can do something too.

The first time I wanted to get something my parents told me no was when I begged my mom for to buy me a G2 Optimus Prime. It was pretty expensive for a toy and it wasn’t Christmas. I was not an outdoor person. I spent all my time in my bedroom avoiding the outdoors. She wanted me to go outside more. I made her a deal if I spent time at the pool learning how to dive off the diving board you have to buy me the toy. She agreed. Three months later, I had my Optimus Prime. I was 11 years old. I learned if you want to get something in life you have to say fuck the rules what else can I do.

I applied this at age 12 when  wanted to buy a game for my Sega Genesis again funds said not till Christmas. I pulled weeds in neighbor gardens, mowed the grass, shoveled show, raked the leaves and sold Kool Aid to construction workers. I got the game I wanted.

Two years later I wanted to start a band, I told my dad to buy me a drum set, he said nope too expensive. I sold my band new N64 I just picked up launch day. Took it back to the store, got my refund, went to the pawn shop and took home a drum set. I started my band with my sisters and two friends. It was short lived but I wanted it, I found a way to do it, I did it.

This became a pattern for my life. In high school I figured out how to graduate without taking the nasty ass math classes or stinking ass P.E. classes they were trying to force me into. I took all the classes I wanted, took 1 SAT prep course and used what I learned in that class to pass my GED and finished high school ahead of my loser friends who played by the rules.

I went dumpster diving to get the equipment I needed to start my DJ service. I sold or traded toys, comics, favors, work, anything to get the things I needed to put it together. When I went into the radio station with my demo and they laughed me out of there I went back home, cobbled together a recording studio, mixed a track with a girl singer in the area who had a great voice, go it played in the local club, sold in the local record store and low and behold the radio station played my song. There were behind the scenes things I can’t talk about here that led to the downfall of my record company. But during that brief period of time,  9 months or thereabouts to be real, I released FIVE underground albums. Two techno, and three hip hop. I had other artists I was working with. I won’t, I can’t go into what happened but needless to say I ended up not going to jail, others not so lucky.

When I left the newspaper in 2018 to head west and try to start my transition I found myself out of work. I applied for a newspaper that said nope. I got on freelance with another one and then started my own. I went around town sold enough adds and created enough content to get one issue out. I even started a Facebook page and a website for the community. That became a bullet point on my resume when applying for jobs.

I’ve told the story how I got my exclusive interview with Congressman Beto O’Rourke. I set my sights on a goal, made a plan and achieved that goal. When my sister and I failed to secure the funding to open my comic book shop from the SBA I made it into a website and sold things out of my car, through Craigslist, on ebay. I did 6,000 worth of sales that first year. I kinda suck at mat so money got tight but also that was around the time right after Carmen so I wasn’t in a great mindset.  But I did it.

Whenever I find myself out of work or desperate for cash I find a way. Whenever I get an idea to do something, no matter how big or small, I ask myself what do I need to do and I get started right away. Luck has played a role for sure. I was working at the newspaper when WWE Professional Wrestling Superstar Sam Houston walked into my paper and gave me a pretty good story. He also invited me on a road trip to se the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in Wichita Falls. On that road trip I saw an opportunity to make a deal with him and he hired me on the spot to make a music video for him that he showed to his buddies at Wrestlemania.

Sometimes I get an idea given to me in casual conversation and I run with it. Before YouTube, when Game Trailers was the place to be, my friends casually mentioned someone should make video guides like they do on G4 but not just showing secrets showing how to beat the games. The next day I had already built a website and found us three sponsors. It lasted only about four or five months before money ran out and complications prevented us from going forward but it was a hell of ride in a short time which yes we did utilize the brand new YouTube as part of our plan. Hell we even formed a content partnership with two other websites, and the aforementioned G4 network. We got too aggressive in our expansion for our other partners who walked away, and then of course G4 went extinct so that deal ended. But I did it. I reached out to their corporate licensing office explained my plan, they agreed and gave me a license. It was pretty cool.

When I was forced to finish school early I failed to complete my cinematography course. So I had nothing to show prospective employers. I decided to take my camera, shoot some scenes, do my special effects and made a movie I showed the person who gave me my first job in the business.

I have had failures but stop and take in all the things I had to do to get to those failures. I never talked to bankers or tellers, I went straight to the president of the branch. I never talked to the radio DJ, I demanded to speak to the program manager. I never settled for customer service, I reached out directly to corporate. To this day I don’t beg for a job. I let my work speak for itself. Yeah I have had to take some temporary and seasonal jobs along the way to pay bills but I always find a way to do what I set out to do. You can to. Transposed was one example. Robin just casually told me one day a friend of hers suggested she do a podcast. She was hesitant. I pushed her into it and now look at it, she’s doing great things with it and all without my help. In that case I saw the strength in her and said hey if you wanna do it just do it don’t make excuses for every excuse there’s an opportunity. The ONLY thing holding you back is you. For fucks sake that’s the legit truth. If you need help, ask for help. Do your research. It wasn’t easy going into the SBA asking for a loan, getting rejected and then starting it myself with nothing. I just did it.

These are the stories I talk about. Believe me, I leave plenty out. I never talk about Bim Dizzle, my comic book I tried to publish, my incomplete books, the video games I started developing, the photography business I did for two years. Hell I didn’t take a class on computers I got a book from Hastings, learned to program, got a CD called Anime Studio, learned to animate, got another program to make 3D models, and then I gave up once I realized I couldn’t do it all. But I started. I tried. I got off my ass and said what does it take to make a video game, I did the parts I could then I recognized I needed more people failed to secure those people and shelved that project. But I did make one game using BASIC as a test.

Here’s one for you. In 2009 I drove my car to Nebraska to live with my baby sister for a summer. As I was rolling into town my car broke down. I had no way to find a job, no way to get to work what did I do? I took the broken limbs from her trees, took some tools out of her shed and started building clocks I could sell at the flea market. My uncle taught me how to do wood working. Oh, I left out the summer I made planter boxes and sold them at the flea market with my uncle. Yeah that’s my point, I have done more shit in my life than most people can find the time to day dream about. I have forgotten more things I have done than most people will ever try to do. Here is my advice. If you want do something, just do it. Don’t make excuses, don’t worry if you fail. If you fail, you learn and try something else. If you succeed congrats. I’ve had failures, I have success. I have had in betweens and I have had projects fail to get off the ground. You know what I don’t have. Regrets. I don’t regret the things I didn’t do, I did them. I left out the part where to test the market before going to SBA for my comic book shop I talked the local video store owner into letting me sell comics in his shop on consignment. I also did the same thing with a local used video game store selling my action figures. It didn’t work the SBA was impressed but wanted sales projections again without knowing real math I wasn’t able to give those accurately. But fuck if I didn’t try. Get off your ass and follow your dreams. If you need help, advice, encouragement talk to me. If you’re gonna make excuses don’t bother I don’t hear excuses.

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Stephanie Bri

A transgender writer who also does podcasts and videos. If you like my writing please consider helping me survive. You can support me directly by giving money to my paypal: If you prefer CashApp my handle is @Stephaniebri22. Also feel free to donate to my Patreon. I know it's largely podcast-centric but every little bit helps. Find it by going to, Thank you.