Tuesday, November 24, 2015

How to Reach Your Writing Goals like a Pro


Chapter 2: Step 1 – Declutter Your Mind

OK. Let’s get started!
No matter what your goal is, no matter how easy or hard you may think it is to attain, the first step that you must take is to declutter your mind.

One of the reasons for which you still haven’t reached your writing goals, is the fact that all of what you’ve learned and heard about publishing your book or about becoming a successful writer, were implemented ideas that are now blocking their fulfillment inside you.

“I have spent most of my time worrying about things that have never happened.” ~ Mark Twain.
For this reason, it’s a great decision to first unlearn what you have learned.

Why do you need to do this? Let me briefly explain.

During our life, we’ve been brainwashed to think that certain goals are impossible to attain. I am telling you that this is one of the biggest lies that we encounter in our lives.

If you are serious about your dreams, if you really wish with all your heart to materialize your dreams, nothing… and I mean nothing can stand in your way. All you have to do is to get rid of all the garbage that was inoculated in your beliefs. Do it and don’t lose time finding out who put it in your mind, why this was done, and most of all don’t blame the ones who taught you those things. They were themselves taught by others and maybe they were well intentioned when they did it. It could have just been because they thought that, that was the ultimate truth. No matter what, this is not your problem but theirs. They were wrong, and you just started on the road to prove it to the whole world.


About the Author
Writer, translator, engineer, researcher, project manager, blogger, eternal student… these are only a few words to describe M.C. Simon.
In a recent interview she confessed:
“I am not only M.C. Simon, the writer whose goal is to rebuild in people the trust in their own forces and in the incredible powers that they received at birth; powers that, maybe they have forgotten about somewhere inside the depth of their being.
I AM all what “I am not only”, and much more! I AM who I AM. And in this form, I follow my Path to consciously touch The Absolute… The ONE who’s Omnipotent, Omniscient and Omnipresent.
The same as YOU and like any other soul that accepted in these times, the challenge to experience life inside a human body, on this wonderful planet we call Earth.”

BUY here: Amazon US   & Amazon UK 

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Time to Take Your Life Back

How those with a chronic illness or disability can take back control of their life, realize goals and learn to be happy again.
Hi, my name is Karen Magill. Siggy Buckley thought it would be a good idea if you and I talked.

First, I want to tell you a bit about myself. In June of 2000, I woke up partially paralysed on one side of my body. Nine days later, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The paralysis left within a few weeks but I was always exhausted and by the end of September, MS forced me to go on disability, leaving the best job I’d ever had.

I was 35 years old and I thought my life was over. All I could see for my future was sitting alone in my one bedroom apartment, watching television and waiting to die.

That’s not what happened though. Today, I am an award-winning novelist with four published paranormal novels and one non-fiction book. I have a budding career as a motivational speaker and have launched a life coaching/mentoring program to help others with a chronic illness and/or disability accomplish a lifelong goal.

Do you have a goal you want to accomplish but aren’t sure how to do it? Do you think it would help if you and I got together on Skype and talked about your goals and the problems you are having reaching it?

If you think speaking to me would be helpful, please go to this link, http://go.cmapn.com/karen-magill-webinar/ watch the webinar, and fill out the application form then book an appointment with me. Or you can go to http://www.karenmagill.com/coaching and fill out the application. All of this will be free.

Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you.

Karen Magill

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Samhain Blessings - Happy Halloween!

When I came to the United States first I was surprised, and delighted, to discover that Halloween was such a popular holiday.  You see Halloween is originally an Irish pagan feast.  It travelled to the United States with our emigrants, in the 19th century, and has been adopted into American culture.
The original Irish Celtic festival was called “Samhain.”  It occurred at the end of autumn when crops had been harvested and animals were slaughtered to provide food for the winter.   It was, essentially, the end of the farming year.   In Celtic culture the 1st November was considered “New Year’s Day”.    So Halloween was their “New Year’s Eve”.
To celebrate “Samhain” the ancient Celts would light bonfires.  These were originally called “bone fires” and were used to incinerate the bones of the recently slaughtered farm animals.   They would also play games such as bobbing for apples, which is still very popular.  In addition they liked to carve vegetables.  The same tradition is still alive today with the carved pumpkin.  As there were no pumpkins in Ireland they used to carve turnips.    

The ancient Celts believed that, at the end of the year, the souls of people who had died that year would leave the earth and go to heaven.    It was part of their belief that these ghosts roamed freely that night before leaving.   In order to ward off any hauntings and provide sustenance for their journey, people would leave food and drink at their door for the departed spirits.   You will notice the origins of “trick-or-treat”.   
We Irish also bake a special cake which is only eaten at Halloween.  It’s called “Barmbrack” and it is used for fortune telling!   Certain small items are concealed in the cake, such as a ring, a rag, a coin or a small stick.   Google “barmbrack” and find out what these signify!

In 601 AD Pope Gregory The First, issued his famous edict.  He told his missionaries that, rather than try to obliterate native customs and beliefs, they should convert them into Christian feast days.   So, the 1st of November then became the Feast of All Saints.  It became a sacred or “hallowed” day.   But the Celts still gave significance to the day before, which was “the eve of All Hallows” and became known as Hallows E’en and then Halloween.    
So now you have the story of Halloween.  And, as the actor Michael Cain would say, “Not many people know that!”

Written by John Schűtte for Siggy Buckley, the honorary “Paddy".

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Ghost Stories & a Bit of Irish History


"Our new home, the pink farmhouse in Co. Tipperary, didn’t have a resident ghost, but it was in a scary neighborhood. A little cottage, abandoned for donkey's years but not in disrepair, sat looming on a curve in the road that led up to our new farm. Sheila, who lived in the same townland, told me later that she saw Little People there sometimes when she came home late around midnight.
Maybe a case of too much of the brown stuff?
I had a sneaking suspicion that the Irish perpetuated this myth partly for the sake of tourists, to tell them what they like to hear. It’s a cliché that the Irish all have the gift of the gab anyway.
Ghost stories stand and fall with the trustworthiness of the person who vouches she knows it on good authority. And that, in Ireland, is usually the friend of a cousin once removed.
If you dig a bit deeper, research on haunted houses shows that they have something in common. Usually, a tragic death befell somebody in or around the house. And Ireland, with its almost 800-year long history of occupation and subjugation, is full of tragic stories. I came across a travelling psychic later whose mission it was to set the ghosts at ease, to send them home or lay them to rest. Marvelous. The interest in ghost lore, like in UFOs, never ceases.
Being skeptics, we just laughed Sheila off, until we heard about a real ghost story in our new home town.  
Leaving Killaloe, where we purchased our abode, on the road to Scarriff, there was a two-story stone house on the left hand side. In spite of the faded lace curtains, its dark windows gave the property an abandoned, foreboding look, while the huge front lawn was always meticulously mown and the landscaping simple but well kept. In front of the downstairs windows, several beautiful, truly blue hydrangeas had caught my eye while we were still hunting for a farm. I wondered whether the farm was for sale, because it was obviously empty. There was no estate agent’s sign, and I didn’t dare to walk up to the gloomy door and find out as it looked so uninviting, almost scary.
The farm buildings belonging to this house were across the road. A huge sycamore tree towered over everything at the roadside gate, and the tree trunk was protected by heavy steel bars. I wondered what the obviously expensive enclosure was about.
Pauline, my one-time housekeeper and later friend, who likes a good yarn but is generally reliable, told me about the drama behind this house. She is the grand-niece of the Irish freedom fighter and hero, Michael Collins, who was tragically shot and killed in 1922 in the Civil War following the War of Independence from Britain, just months before the creation of the Irish Free State. Pauline referred to him proudly by his nickname: The Big Fellow. A photo of him in his military fineries still hangs over her fireplace in the parlor ─ something she would never part with, neither for fear of death nor money!
In 1923, when Ireland was torn by a civil war, a family of five IRA supporters lived in this large farmhouse on the road to Scarriff. One dark night when all were in bed, there was terrible knocking of rifles on the door. It was the Black and Tans, the most feared and vicious British brigade, that all but terrorized local communities. Their primary task was to make Ireland hell for the rebels to live in. They meant business. Suspecting traitors in this house, they broke down the door and killed the whole family except for a nine-year-old boy who managed to scramble out during the bedlam. He stole away and hid across the road in a tall tree, which saved his life. As the only survivor, to this day, he takes care of house and lawn and protects the tree in memory of the tragedy that befell his family.

Is the house haunted? Yes, everybody knows that and well, what do you expect after so many killings? Could I talk to the owner? No, he is a bit funny in the head and has never been the same since. I drove by it regularly, and each time couldn’t help but remember the horror that raged in such a peaceful rural area."

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Real Advice For The Newlywed to donate 10% of Royalties to Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

AS MANY Of YOU KNOW, October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). As our part in advancing the cause of DVAM, we would like to announce that for the remainder of the month of October, 10% of all my royalties from the sale of my book, Real Advice For The Newlywed currently on sale at Amazon.com will be donated to NoMore.org’s campaign to end domestic violence and sexual assault.

Some alarming facts:

·       Nearly one in four women in the U.S. reports experiencing violence by a current or former spouse or boyfriend at some point in her life.
·       On average, three women are killed every day as a result of domestic violence. More than 40 percent of female murder victims are killed by their husbands or boyfriends.
·       Data found that women experience over two million injuries from partner violence each year.
·       Approximately 1.3 million women and 835,000 men are physically assaulted by an intimate partner annually in the United States.

From first page to last, Real Advice For The Newlywed was written as a guide to help married couples navigate their way through the sometimes tempestuous strife and turmoil many couples encounter - including the threat of physical and emotional violence. There is one entire chapter devoted specifically on how to handle the threat of physical and mental cruelty.

If you haven’t yet purchased your copy of Real Advice For The Newlywed, for yourself or as a wedding gift to a couple you know, now is the time to do so before October ends. This is an important and vital effort to ensure the continuation of NoMore.org’s efforts to educate and eliminate domestic violence and sexual assault. Make it yours.

I invite you to share this with as many of your contacts as possible.

Watch MoveOn.org’s recent video on YouTube:       

Samuel Murphy
on Facebook
on Amazon

Saturday, September 26, 2015

The Guilt Factor: Motivation by Fear and the Means to Empathy

For me, the need to write has always had a face.

Whose face that is and what expression it wears varies. Typically, it's been the face of a writing professor that's haunted me during those long middle-of-the-night writing sessions. It doesn't matter how fair or kind the professor is; for some reason (maybe it's the dark and caffeine jitters), my imagination paints them with a steady frown, causing my stomach to knot over every word with the thought that they might be unamused by my metaphors. Other times, the face has been warmer -- that of a close friend, perhaps -- but with eyes sad and disappointed as they strain to find some value in my work. More recently, the face has been the loved one abroad, patient and smiling; it invokes a twinge of pain in me as I remember my promise to write novels in his absence, while his cheerful voice says, "It's okay, don't feel too bad about it."

There has always been a sense of guilt associated with my work, and that guilt has always felt personal because I've associated it with important people in my life. It's not that uncommon of a trait among overachievers, I suppose. How often have we psychoanalyzed the artist driven by a neurotic need to please an ever-dissatisfied parent or mentor, even years after the latter's demise? Whether it is for God or husband or mommy dearest, history is full of creators desperately striving to impress someone.

Why? Isn't love of the art enough?  

For my part, guilt in its worst moments has caused the writing process to be miserable. Mainly because those disappointed faces in my mind are entirely fictitious, not at all founded upon reality. I'm naturally self-critical to begin with, and for some reason or another I often project that criticism onto others. Even if any of the people whose faces I see tell me my work is fine, a small corner of my subconscious doesn't believe them, doesn't want to believe they're being honest in their praise. There's a fine line between constructive encouragement and being too nice, and I'll be damned if I can tell the difference.

But whether those frowns are fabricated or not, my fear of disappointing others says something interesting about the writing process, I think. I would like to believe that love of writing could be its own motivator, but for me it isn't so. Even as one who thrives on solitude, I find myself needing others in my writing -- for validation, for support. Call it insecurity (and I'm sure it is, partly), but I suspect that it has more to do with empathy. While "writing for the self" is a popular trend these days, and valid in its own right, I think it fails to see what makes great literature great: its ability to evoke something in another person, to touch something deep in his roots and make him see a commonality between himself and a stranger on a page. Writing gives the guise of speaking as an individual, when in reality it speaks of humanity.

While I have no grand illusions about inspiring millions, I can't bring myself to pull the "misunderstood writer" card and write without any regard to what others think. It goes against what has impacted me as a reader, and consequently what I can only hope to achieve as a writer: if what I write doesn't inspire, if it doesn't resonate with someone, I have failed.

But I know I don't have to please everyone, nor do I want to. In his part-memoir, part-advice book On Writing, Stephen King explains that "you can't let the whole world into your story," but you can -- and should -- let in those who matter most. According to King, every good writer must have an Ideal Reader (I.R., for short); someone for whom you write, someone who, in flesh or in spirit, is always "going to be in your writing room." As King points out, sometimes a writer's Ideal Reader (like the neurotic patient's mommy dearest) is miles away or many years dead. It doesn't matter. An I.R. gives the writer a tangible audience, a direction for the writing process; someone who the writer wants to make think, laugh, cry, and feel deeply. "And you know what?" King adds. "You'll find yourself bending the story [for them] even before the Ideal Reader glimpses so much as the first sentence."[sic!]
It takes a certain empathy to write with another person in mind, and to know that person well enough (at least, to think one does) to impact them. And that's marvelous, because empathy -- seeing and valuing each other's common humanity -- is what writing's all about, isn't it?

As for myself, I've found that guilt is not such a terrible thing to live with after all. That fear of disappointing my reader is what forces me to analyze my own work critically; it makes me take a second, third, and fourth look at everything, asking myself, "Is there anything else I can do to improve this part?" Having someone else in mind, moreover, often gives me a reason to write on my darkest days. As a naturally self-deprecating self-critic, I find it easy to conclude on a bad day that I'm not worth the time or effort to write. But, because I'm a compassion-driven person, someone else is always worth the work.

So, in spite of its bad rap, I don't mind living with guilt. If a visitation from a frowning face is what produces the work, so be it. Maybe, someday, I'll finally make that face smile. 
Emma Moser 

Twitter @em_mo_write ♦

Monday, September 14, 2015

Ghosts and Psychics In Ireland

When I began my novel, A Cry From The Deep, I had no idea that my characters would includ ghosts and psychics. It was the land that spoke to me, as well as my protagonist, Catherine Fitzgerald, a scuba diver on assignment to cover a treasure hunt, who took me in this direction.
I’be been blessed with much travel, so it’s not surprising that the places I’ve been end up in my stories. My husband, Rob, and I visited Ireland in 2006 and to say that I was blown away by its beauty is an understatement. 
Ireland is so much more when you see it for yourself. I tried to capture what I saw in my novel, A Cry From The Deep, when Catherine Fitzgerald sees the land for the first time.

As if the drive wasnt challenging enough, she also had to contend with the distraction of the picture postcard scenery. Though the skies were grey, the greens of the landscape were unlike anything shed ever seen. It was as if God, the artist supreme, had selected every green paint available on the market and then some. There was kelly green, avocado, forest, willow, apple, lime, and mint. One green flowed seamlessly into another as it marched over the hills and into the beyond. She passed thatched cottages behind old stone fences, neon coloured pubs by the roadside, and new mansions set back on large properties. She even welcomed the times she had to stop to let farmers cross the road with their flocks of sheep. The gentle landscape was a welcome contrast to the frenetic pace of New York.”  from A Cry From The Deep

Because A Cry From The Deep, is a time slip story of a love so powerful it spans several lifetimes, it had to have ghosts and psychics. When Catherine Fitzgerald, about to join an underwater hunt for one of the lost ships of the Spanish Armada, buys an antique Claddagh ring, she is troubled by nightmares and visions that set her on a path to fulfill a promise of love made centuries before. Set in Provence, Manhattan, and Ireland, this romantic mystery exposes not only two women’s longings, but also the beauty of the deep, where buried treasures tempt salvagers to break the law.

Thanks again,  Siggy. I know you love Ireland as well. 

Diana Stevan 
For more about me, please visit me at http://www.dianastevan.com
https://twitter.com/DianaStevan, or my Facebook author page at https://www.facebook.com/dianastevan.author  
The link to my book title is http://amzn.to/1Lmx7nq.