A hero of mine, Ray Bradbury, died yesterday

Posted: June 6th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: My Thoughts, Videos, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

A hero of mine, Ray Bradbury, died yesterday (1920-2012).

I remember picking up “Something Wicked This Way Comes” for $0.75 from a used book store in Ottawa, Canada the Spring of 2010. Beth was there for business and I tagged along for the day and had time to burn. I opened to the Prologue and read, “First of all, it was October, a rare month for boys. But there be bad and good, as the pirates say.”

That’s all it took.

I devoured it over the next several hours, and many times since. It’s a restaurant I love to visit when I want something divine that melts in my mouth. And if I don’t have time for the full meal, I stop in and grab a paragraph for dessert knowing that wherever my finger lands on the page, it will be the sweetest.

The world is less bright today with him gone.

If you aren’t familiar with Bradbury, he has written such works as “Fahrenheit 451,” “The Martian Chronicles,” and my favorite book of all time, “Something Wicked This Way Comes.” I have read many books, hundreds, and his writing leaves me speechless every time I read it. The way he creates scenes with his words, meaning from his metaphors, and depth of character leaves me in awe.

And none of it is contrived because Bradbury loved.

He loved books and the words that made them. He loved people, butterflies, and even the things that scared him.

And he wrote these things.

Here is an interview with Ray Bradbury that I love to watch. Maybe in hearing him talk about what he loves, he will inspire you,

“Now, remember this: Love is at the center of your life. The things that you do should be things that you love, and things that you love should be things that you do.”


Be Careful What You Wish For

Posted: April 21st, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: My Thoughts, Writing | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Man with writer's blockI stood on the dock and cast my line for at least the three hundredth time. Hours had past since my last bite and I’d almost lost interest in catching anything. It wasn’t bad to clean my limit of small mouth bass, but to clean just one sounded like work. My mind drifted to the novel I’d been working on for several years but could never quite find the time to write.

As I reeled in the line for the last time, I worked the bait with a slight jig. I felt a tug on the line. It wasn’t the staccato twitch of a nibble, but the slow easy pull of thick weeds. That’s where the monsters are. I saw my “weed fish” slowly surface and creep toward me like a stalking sea dinosaur. Something in it glimmered as the high sun reflected off it. I removed the inanimate beast from my line and extracted a small lamp from its belly. I wiped it clean of sea slime to see if it had any worth, and out came a genie!

“I will grant you one wish!” he proclaimed.

Not one to be without speech or opinion, I answered without hesitation, “I have a book I’ve been working on for years. I wish I could write like the pros!”

“Your wish is my command.” Smoke poured from his hands until it engulfed the entire dock. A hurricane force wind blew me backward. When the smoke cleared I found myself sitting at the desk in my office.

“That’s it? I’m a pro now?” I dried my wet hands on my jeans then placed them on the keyboard of my laptop and began to type. “The sun scorched Ernest through his sweat drenched shirt.” I paused, surprised at how freely the line came to me, then placed my fingers back on the keys.

Nothing.

I glared at the genie. “What’s the problem? I thought you were powerful. Where are the words? Why are they not coming to me?” I stood in disgust and headed for the door but was stopped short by a tug on my leg. I looked down. My leg was shackled to the desk.

“What’s this about? Am I a prisoner in my own home?”

“You wished to write like a pro, and you will. However, there is no magic that can accomplish this. You are bound to this desk every day until you have written for two hours. Only then will your shackles be loosed. Any time you stop writing, the will the clock will stop until all of the required time has been spent writing. And so it will be until you are, as you say, a “pro.”

“Wow. It sounds more like a prison sentence.”

“It was your wish. The good news is that once you are a pro, you will write four to six hours a day with no shackles. If I were you, I’d start writing.”

And with that, he vanished.

———————————————————————————————————-

I am writing a novel, which is more work than anything I have ever done before. This short story was written when I realized what it would take to be a successful author. I hope you enjoyed it, and know that anything worth doing takes work. There is no easy way, even when you love it.

 


A Light In The Darkness

Posted: December 13th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Spirituality, Writing | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

umm, yeah. Here’s a little ditty I wrote four years ago. Enjoy

I own a store called A Light in the Darkness. It’s a quaint little shop with thousands of different lamps, chandeliers, and the like. I also sell the bulbs for every model you could think of. Our shingle reads, “My light will free you from any darkness.”

When you walk through the aisles, every lamp is lit so you can see how brightly they shine and what type of light they cast. They scream, “Look how bright my light shines! I have what it takes to free you from darkness!”

The display lamps scoff at the others still in the package. They call them useless and tell them how dull and insignificant they are sitting boxed on the shelf. “See how much light I give off? And you just sit there doing nothing.”

All of the lights are in separate rows, so you can clearly see their labels and what each is good at. Sometimes you can hear them argue about who does their job better and why they’re so important.

It’s ironic how proud the lights on display are, because they are the ones that never leave the shop.

The lights that are still in the package, they are my greatest asset. They have the potential to be everything and more that the display lights are, but are content to remain where I put them. They wait for the day that I take them from the shelf and send them to be the light that frees someone from darkness.

And that is important, because I have a specific light for every need. And not everyone knows what type of light is needed for their particular circumstance. These customers are easy to spot as they wander around my store from aisle to aisle looking for the one that’s “just right.” I’ve had a few complaints that it’s hard to know which light to choose when they all say they are the best. So I help them and guide them to a shelf, giving them the light that’s just right for their need.

I wish the display lights could be used to help someone, but they are too busy trying to outshine the others and too afraid to leave the store. They fear that they might be unplugged and their lights cease shining. I try to tell them they will be plugged in again when they are ready to be used but their fear paralyzes them.

So I am surrounded mostly by display lights who give light to no one but themselves in a store that is already lit, while a handful wait patiently for me to send them.

So how can I help you today? Remember, my light will free you from any darkness.

 


– A Light in the Darkness –

Posted: November 9th, 2007 | Author: | Filed under: Spirituality, Writing | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

umm, yeah. Here’s a little diddy I wrote today.

I own a lighting store called A Light in the Darkness. It’s a neat little shop that has thousands of different lamps, chandeliers, and the like. I also sell the bulbs for every model you could think of. My motto is “My light will free you from any darkness.”

When you walk through the aisles, every lamp is lit so you can see how brightly they shine and what kind of light they cast. They are screaming, “Look how bright my light shines! I have what it takes to free you from darkness!”

These bulbs scoff at the others still in the package. They call them useless and tell them how dull and insignificant they are sitting on the shelf. “See how much light I give off? And you just sit there doing nothing.”

All of the lights are in separate rows, so you can clearly see their labels and what each is good at. Sometimes you can hear them argue about who does their job better and why they’re so important.

It’s a funny thing how proud the lights on display are. But they are the ones that never leave the shop.

The lights that are still in the package, they are my greatest asset. They have the potential to be everything and more that the display lights are, but are content to remain where I put them. They wait for the day that I take them from the shelf and send them to be the light that frees someone from darkness.

And that is important, because I have a specific light for every need. And not everyone knows what type of light is needed for their particular circumstance. These customers are easy to spot as they wander around my store from aisle to aisle looking for the one that’s “just right.” I’ve had a few complaints that it’s hard to know which light to choose when they all say they are the best. So I help them and guide them to a shelf, giving them the light that’s just right for their need.

I wish the display lights could be used to help someone, but they are too busy trying to outshine the others and too afraid to leave the store. They fear that they might be unplugged and their lights cease shining. I try to tell them they will be plugged in again when they are ready to be used but their fear paralyzes them.

So I am surrounded mostly by display lights who give light to no one but themselves in a store that is already lit, while a handful wait patiently for me to send them.

Remember, “My light will free you from any darkness.”