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Allena Tapia
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Allena Tapia is a communications consultant and owner of GardenWall Publications, a Lansing, Michigan marketing agency. GardenWall focuses on communications FOR and TO Latinos in Lansing and beyond. Other niche topics include education, social justice, politics, non-profits, health, small business, book reviews and parenting. Services include all communications aspects: writing, editing, blogging, translation, grant writing, social media, publication support, publicity, marketing, research, reviews and SEO/keywording, with packages and needs tailored to each client.

Tapia also blogs on politics and culture at Eve's Tree of Knowledge and leads new freelance writers through the career at About.com Freelance Writing.

Tapia earned a BA degree in English at Michigan State University and later returned there to earn graduate credits in Professional Writing. She has taught writing, English and literature topics at Michigan State University, Lansing Community College and through the Upward Bound program. She also enjoyed a span of years teaching about writing, grant writing, small business, blogging and book reviewing at LCC's community ed program.

The Tapias enjoy travel to a family ranch in rural Mexico, road trips, volunteer work, University of Michigan and MSU football and beer tasting. The current Tapia menagerie includes Allena, her husband Steve, two children, two dogs, three cats, a baby bunny and a 100-year-old Victorian house in a historic small town.

Be sure to follow Allena on Google.

Que viva Tapia!

Entries by Allena Tapia

Catherine Hubbard: Legacy and Lessons

(0) Comments | Posted December 6, 2013 | 5:15 PM

An aspect of parenting that often shocks us is how very much our children teach us; often, our perceived role as shepherd, mentor and guide is turned on its head. A year after Catherine Violet Hubbard's tragic passing in Newtown, Connecticut, her mother, Jenny Hubbard, continues to learn from Catherine...

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Top 5 Gifts for the Writer In Your Life

(0) Comments | Posted December 3, 2013 | 11:42 AM

Got a writer in your life? It's the passion that makes a gift memorable and few people are more passionate about their hobby than we writers are. So, this one's not difficult at all! Let's take a look at the top five gifts for the writer in your life.

Not...

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Outsourcing? Don't Hire These 9 Freelancers!

(3) Comments | Posted December 3, 2013 | 9:19 AM

In my years as a freelance communications professional, I've dealt with numerous "clean-up" jobs. These are the jobs where I come in as the second or even third freelancer hired, specifically to fix whatever travesty the contractor before me left behind. In that time, I've learned to recognize...

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Kony's Surrender, The Hunger Games, Social Justice and Your Teen

(0) Comments | Posted December 2, 2013 | 2:58 PM

Sources say that Joseph Kony is close to surrendering to international forces. The infamous leader of the Lord's Resistance Army operating in parts of Congo and/or South Sudan was made ubiquitous worldwide by the viral Kony 2012 campaign, centered in the U.S. and run by the...

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Home-based Business? Five Ways to Cut Your Tax Burden Now

(0) Comments | Posted November 8, 2013 | 2:06 PM

You know what time of year it is, micro-businesses! You've faithfully kept your business records, and have estimated and paid your quarterly taxes throughout the year. But December is coming up, and that means it's time to close out 2013. Here's how to cut your tax burden before the apple...

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New Writer? Don't Make These 3 Rookie Mistakes

(1) Comments | Posted November 8, 2013 | 11:56 AM

In my many years of mentoring new freelance writers and teaching community ed classes at the local college, I've seen it all when it comes to newbie mistakes. In addition, I've made more than a few myself. The good news is that many of these are recoverable offenses....

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My Kids Read for HOURS Every Day... Electronically

(2) Comments | Posted November 1, 2013 | 12:41 PM

Here is where I'm coming from today as I sit down to mull this disclosure:

My pat morning routine includes NPR podcasts while I'm preparing for the day, and today's queue included an interesting story on the deluge of (and resistance to) tablets, iPads and other digital...

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4 F-Words That Support Your Child As a Writer

(0) Comments | Posted October 24, 2013 | 11:35 AM

I want a child who writes. I admit that, even though I'm sure it may be partially selfish. As a freelance writer and editor, I know I'd be proud of having a child that also has a talent for composition -- sort of a "chip off the old...

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My Morning Jog: Three Reasons You DO Need Feminism

(11) Comments | Posted October 18, 2013 | 12:08 PM

This past week I had an email exchange with one of those dry-wit Twitter handles that deliver political talking points with a caustic slant.

You know what I'm talking about, right? They're generally not representing the actual human behind the tweets, and they tend to eschew the more personal...

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Want 'Consensus'? Let's Move Past the Basics on Immigration Reform

(12) Comments | Posted October 11, 2013 | 9:40 PM

Really? No one's going to write a takedown of Derrick Morgan's simplistic talking points about immigration and "amnesty" over on Slate? A news portal and supposed nonpartisan nonprofit provides space for a naked look into "the most important issues America must tackle in the next 30 years," and...

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Rep. King's Dehumanizing Remarks Straight Out of History, Literature

(10) Comments | Posted July 24, 2013 | 3:30 PM

Iowa Rep Steve King's comments about DREAM-eligible youth probably bothered me at the same level as it did most people; as a culture, we are (at the least) able to recognize these generalizations for what they are: lazy thinking wrapped up in stereotypes.

But there was something much more...

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5 Reasons You Should Care About Immigration Reform

(21) Comments | Posted January 29, 2013 | 6:35 PM

Much of the country is steadily becoming more mixed, more diverse, and less homogenous than ever before.

Despite this, there are still pockets of the population for whom the question of immigration reform is one met with ambiguity. It may be that you've not had much exposure...

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Latina Mom's Secret to 'Having It All'

(4) Comments | Posted September 21, 2012 | 6:24 PM

The first time my husband introduced me (young, pregnant, uncomfortable) to his extended family, I blamed my fumbling Spanish for my confusion when he called his aunt "mom." However, I learned soon enough that he and his siblings do indeed regard her fully as a second mother. He said she...

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Multiracial Children: Teaching My Kids To Check The Latino Box On Applications

(66) Comments | Posted April 12, 2012 | 1:08 PM

When my son's Michigan Educational Achievement Program's scores came back, I didn't congratulate him, or clap him on the back, or point out how well he'd done on both math and reading. Instead, the first thing I asked was "Did you check Latino or Hispanic on the front sheet?"

See,...

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Cliquishness And Bullying Among Parents

(450) Comments | Posted November 29, 2011 | 2:11 AM

High school doesn't end with graduation. Every stage of life has some version of jockeying for popularity, or gossiping behind one anothers' backs, or not wanting to be the one who doesn't fit in. It happens in college (but with bigger books) and in first jobs (but with paychecks) and...

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