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Archive for the ‘Book Review’ Category

More on Rob’s Rebellion, and a poem from the book

Robs Rebellion 333x500Rob’s Rebellion makes the list:
The Frivolist: Reading Rainbows: 9 LGBT Books To Bide Your Time Until Summer
by Mikey Rox

http://www.pridesource.com/article.html?article=75681

How it got there:

I have been on the Haro mailing (Help a reporter out) list for several years. I don’t always look over the requests, but a while back I was reading through the requests when I noticed a request for information about GLBT themed recent novels, so I sent in the information.

And now, for your enjoyment, is a poem from the novel:

Ballad of Barad and Garan

Barad strode out one two-moon night
upon dark desert sand.
He kissed Garan upon the lips,
then listened to his demand:

“The time has come for us to part.
I’m going off to fight
Let us exchange a pledge of love
before we part tonight.”

Barad replied, “I cannot pledge
although I love you true.
I fear the consequences when
I swear my love to you.”

“Barad, your fear,” his lover said,
“is all that holds you back.
I hope one day you’ll seek within
the courage which you lack.

“I will march off to war tonight
while you remain behind.
The spirits will find fault with you
for love you have declined.”

Barad beheld the moonlit sand
as Garan strode away,
while praying spirits keep him safe
amid the coming fray.

The battle raged in dark of night.
Garan reached for his blade.
Too late, his blood dripped down his breast.
He felt his life-force fade.

Around a world went ringing out
Garan’s last, dying cry.
His lover’s name was upon lips,
Garan let out a sigh.

“You failed to promise me your love.
I lost the will to live.
Your selfish pride, inconstancy,
spirits will not forgive.”

Barad stood tall beside a rock,
the wind blew on his brow.
He said, “Perhaps it’s not too late.
Oh spirits, hear my vow:

“While I may wander through this life,
if love should come to me,
I will not turn my face away,
however hard it be.”

Barad meandered far and wide.
He fought for many years.
And every night he hungered more
for love he’d lost to fears.

One day he met a giant brute
who tried to block his way.
Barad took out his long, sharp sword.
He fought for many a day.

The giant had a longer reach,
Barad was much more quick.
He wore the mighty giant down
The brute was tired and sick.

The giant heaved a mighty sigh,
and said, “Let’s call a truce.
I vowed to stop the fighting when
I found a good excuse.”

Barad continued on his way
up to a heap of stone.
He sat and sobbed, “Deprived of love.
I’ve spent my life alone.”

He rose and wandered to a town
to find something to eat.
But in the town he found the man
he’d feared he’d never meet.

Barad gazed at the other’s face.
The stranger stared right back.
Barad heard spirits call to him,
“Here is the love you lack.

“We spirits bless you with this chance,
and you must see it through.
You must now kiss the stranger twice,
tell him you love him true.”

“I vowed I would not turn away
if love should come to me.
I’ll kiss this stranger with the wish
our love is meant to be.

“I’ve never met this man before
How will he now react?
I’ll take a risk and hope, at least,
I will not be attacked.”

Barad then kissed the stranger twice,
both times with mighty smack,
and said, “Oh, sir, I love you true,
Oh, will you love me back?”

With a smile the other replied,
“I’ve waited many years
in hopes my love would come to me,
for love to conquer fears.

I’ll love you true forever more.
You need not be afraid.
I bless the spirits for their gift,
the love for which I prayed.”

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So, You’re a Creative Genius… Now What?: A review

“I contend that if you’re not actively creating something, you’re not entirely alive.” ~Carl King

You’re inspired, you’ve released your creative genius. What do you do with it? This is where Carl King’s book, So, You’re a Creative Genius… Now What?, comes into power.

I first tuned into this book by following links about introverts, ending up on Carl King’s blog post 10 Myths About Introverts (a good read, but another topic). I liked King’s way of thinking, and saw that he had a book. The publisher, MWP, has a sample from the book on their website. I devoured all seventeen sample pages, and filled up a page in my bliss book with quotes and inspirations from that alone. I was sold, and bought the book next chance I got.

King doesn’t mince words. Every sentence, every page, has impact. You won’t find repetition or filler here. He has a quirky humor, and tells it straight.

This book covers so many topics relating to creativity. From your personal workspace (spacestation), to social interactions, the business, and daily routines. It’s a survival guide for the creative soul. About making the most of that wonderful brain you’ve got, not wasting your imagination and creativity.

As I’ve traveled the path of submitting my writing, both fiction and poetry, in the hopes for publication, I really liked how King compared us to salesman. The salesman gets fired every day. “And at the end of the day, even if you do a great job, you get fired. Because you’re paid to wake up and look for work each and every day.” Definitely something I can relate to. But then he turns it around, shows how we can learn from this state of being. “The flip side of this paradox is that a salesman is never unemployed, because he creates his own destiny.”

I recommend this book for anyone whose hobby or work is creative.

Next time on Mary’s Expression: writers groups.

Zen in the Art of Writing: A Review

“You fail only if you stop writing.” ~Ray Bradbury

The above quote has long been my mantra for writing. I keep it at the top of my daily writing document. So, as inspired as I am by this one statement of Bradbury’s, I was delighted to come across an entire book of such words. Zen in the Art of Writing is a collection of essays that Ray Bradbury has written, ranging in publication date from 1961 to 1986. The collection, published in 1990, is still relevant today. The messages just as true.

The essays are as follows:

  • The Joy of Writing
  • Run Fast, Stand Still, Or, The Thing at the Top of the Stairs, Or, New Ghosts from Old Minds
  • How to Keep and Feed a Muse
  • Drunk, and in Charge of a Bicycle
  • Investing Dimes: Fahrenheit 451
  • Just This Side of Byzantium: Dandelion Wine
  • On the Shoulders of Giants
  • The Secret Mind
  • Zen in the Art of Writing
  • … On Creativity

In these, Bradbury shares his experiences with life and writing, and shows how entwined the two are. He takes inspiration from his own life, his own passions.

When I picked up this book and started reading, it was impossible to put down. It spoke to my own passions, reignited my zest for writing. A reminder of why I do what I do. He does share advice, some how-to for writers, but what I took most was the underlying celebration of the art. The book’s subtitle is Releasing the Creative Genius Within You, and it lives up to that task.

“When honest love speaks, when true admiration begins, when excitement rises, when hate curls like smoke, you need never doubt that creativity will stay with you for a lifetime.”

~Ray Bradbury, from How to Keep and Feed a Muse

I definitely recommend this book, both for aspiring writers and those who’ve been long in the trenches. It is a joy to read, and will take you back to the roots of not just the how-to write, but the why. If you’ve lost that love, found the passion dimming, rediscover it here.

Next time on Mary’s Expression: More on the Creative Genius.

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