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IRS “Dirty Dozen” Tax Scams for 2017

As a freelance writer, I research many subjects for both my fiction and nonfiction. Recently, during the research phase of a project for an educational text on identity theft, I learned that fraudulent tax preparers are among the “Dirty Dozen” of IRS tax scams for this year. Who’d have guessed?

irsDid you know:

  • To charge for preparing someone else’s tax return, you must have an IRS Preparer Tax Identification Number and include it on all tax returns you prepare?
  • The IRS has a website with a list of all professionals who have credentials to file tax returns? You can visit this list to find qualified preparers in your area.
  • Paid preparers who complete returns for more than 10 clients are usually required to file electronically. If your preparer refuses to file electronically, find out why.

For more information about tax preparers, visit the full article, IRS “Dirty Dozen” Series of Tax Scams for 2017 Includes Return Preparer Fraud; Choose Reputable Preparers.

To see the Dirty Dozen list for 2017, visit here: https://www.irs.gov/uac/newsroom/irs-summarizes-dirty-dozen-list-of-tax-scams-for-2017

And the winner is…

SSS-300x220Me!

No, I didn’t win first prize, but I placed 16 out of 25, so my short story, “Mama,” will be published in the 17th Annual Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition Collection.

Each year, Writer’s Digest sponsors a variety of writing competitions, the winners of which win cash prizes and/or have their work published in the magazine or one of the books it publishes. Since this was only the second short story I’ve ever written, I’m very pleased with the win.

Once I have details about how you can obtain your copy of the short story collection, I’ll post it here. I’ll be entering WD’s Annual Writing Competition next, so stay tuned for another announcement in October!

Daily Dose of Inspiration

It is time for her to stand up and claim herself.

She must now bring forth from beneath that bushel basket

The wonders she has kept hidden for fear they’d be snatched away.

 

She will collect the many griefs and burdens

And surrender them in exchange for

Solace in the arms of her treasures.

 

She will gently close the door to yearnings for what will never be

And throw wide the gateway to a paradise

Where innumerable possibilities await.

 

She will prod her failings and shortcomings into that basket

And stand atop it, hugging herself in glee,

Reveling in the wonders she has freed.

 

I am She

And I am so very much more

Than I ever knew or expected.

We All Have a Voice

Our first amendment rights not only allow US the freedom of speech, they allow OTHERS the same right. Why do we become so hateful when we hear things we don’t like? Each of us is entitled to have our own beliefs and give voice to them.

If I don’t agree with you, are you more apt to listen to me if I try to win you over to my side respectfully, with explanations and facts that support what I’m saying, or if I holler at you, call you names, and point out [what I perceive as] your flaws? Why do we insist on always having our own way instead of finding a way to have some of what we want all the time?

When did our society decide that the better person is the one who can dig up the most dirt on an opponent rather than SHOWING his or her innate integrity and capabilities? As a writer, I was trained to SHOW and not TELL because readers want to see and feel the characters, not listen to blathering words. As an American I want to see and believe in my president; I don’t want to listen to baloney.

Has everyone forgotten why this country was founded?

A leader is someone people follow because the individual has qualities everyone admires and trusts, someone who leads by example and walks the talk, someone who leads for the purpose of serving the people.

Right now, our country lacks true leadership and I don’t see any examples I’m willing to follow.

How can WE convince our government we want a president who not only has read the Constitution and the laws of our country but also abides by them? How can WE convince our government we prefer a president who values loyalty over power? How can WE convince our government we are tired of being treated with disrespect … as if we don’t even know how to think for ourselves?

WE need to speak up, respectfully. WE need to live by the same standards we want our leaders to embrace. WE need to set the example and demand that our government follow it.

I challenge both our presidential candidates to conduct this final debate by only talking about themselves and their beliefs: what they are willing to do for us and about their past actions and words. Instead of pointing fingers at their opponent and saying, “S/he did something worse than I did!” let’s hear each of them dig down deep inside and SHOW us who they really are so we have a real reason to vote … or stay home.