The value of reading. The increasing of our imagination. What reading does to our minds is something I truly value. A great book not only entertains and teaches, but it opens your mind, expands your awareness of the struggles of daily life.
It must bring empathy, a better understanding from a different perspective. At least, that’s what great storytellers must do, which is bring you different perspectives and emotional sensations to better your own life.
Following I bring you some bookfairs to find your next read:
I find that, most of the time, the best ideas are born from simplicity. Take for example, the hero or villain in a movie or book. Something truly painful happened to them. A really troubled past made them who they are, regardless of the powers, weapons, or toys for combat they use now. Focus on the psychological change of each one of them.
And that is simplicity, because we have all suffered; so we can all relate to suffering and the psychological changes one may experience. All we have to do is take the suffering and add some interesting and creative experiences that shape the mind accordingly, and then we have a new character.
I make the character go through self-doubt, self-pity, anger, and all kinds of simple but real feelings. After all, my feelings lead me through my life, and they also lead the characters in my stories in order to be real like me. All pain and suffering exists in my life for a purpose, whether I like to admit it or not–school bullying, surgeries, separations, loss, bigotry, etc.
That exists to make me stronger. In the same sense then, a fiction character must allow himself to feel all his pain and go through a challenging transformation process; and then decide if to follow his anger as the villain, or to learn from the pain and gain strength as the hero.
All creation becomes true art when it is poured from the heart of the creator. So, for example, in my writing I create my characters with heart, which means I give them life through sharing the way I feel and projecting that into them. In that way, my readers can know me through my characters and their stories; so, in a sense, I am living through my characters, or I am building and leaving my legacy through my characters.
And, of course, my characters must create the attraction, the mystery, the reason for the reader to keep on reading. And that is done through the stress, joy, excitement, sadness, and everything else the characters feel and that is described throughout their journey. Description of their mental state, for me at least, is very important if I want to create and strengthen that attraction.
One of the most interesting things in life, to me at least, is just that, life itself, how it develops from seemingly nothing to something more and more. From nothingness into a fetus, and from a fetus into an adult.
It is in fact why I created Shadow. Ben’s shadow, who is a magical creature in the infant or early child stage, and who is the 2nd main character in my dark fantasy series BENJAMIN JONES.
Stories in life
Stories are what shape us. Each day in our heads we tell ourselves something, whether positive or negative. So, whatever you tell yourself is what counts. Would you allow yourself to be miserable because the situations in your life don’t match your expectations??
Or would you keep positive even in the face of loss and sad events in your life?? Shadow is a positive character in the series, even silly and childish at times; but that is because he represents the love, the innocence, the curiosity in Ben.
So, he was born from magic and in the image of Ben. Shadow is his shadow. And that is what your life is, a shadow, a projection of your attitudes and character in life. Because, again, stories shape us. So choose your story carefully each day.
“Soon afterwards then, at the potent sound of the bugle, the first battalion commenced leading the way. Jake rode his horse alongside his Sitchin generals and siren captains, and he had matured and carried much knowledge on his field so he was respect by them. But, being as young as he was, he didn’t have much practice on a horse; so he would sometimes ride and sometimes walk…
“These horses were extremely strong and resilient to the fog, and they wore almost weightless helmets and body wear with special features for warfare and safety. There were small biotech-land vehicles with the capacity to hover inches from the soil and run at very high speeds, and these 2-seat hovercrafts were driven by only the highest mages and tacticians…” ~ Through the dead lands, from ‘The Book of 1st Witchcraft.’ Coming soon…
That was a section from “The Book of 1st Witchcraft,” #3 in the epic series BENJAMION JONES.
And if you are into the ‘Harry Potter’, and also the ‘Percy Jackson’ novels, then you’ll enjoy this series about gods, demons, magic, and self-discovery.
We’re giving away FREE DOWNLOADS of #1 and #2 in the series BENJAMIN JONES. Click below to download yours now:
“The ultimate aim of the ego is not to see something, but to be something.” ~ Muhammad Iqbal; Indian poet, philosopher, politician, academic, barrister, and scholar.
In a distant world where thinking deeply got you in trouble, where going against the establishment and its rules got you excommunicated and locked behind bars.
A dirty and trembling man sits upon the floor within his enclosed jail cell, close to him The Lord of Darkness himself sits under the form of a bright window…
…After several minutes had passed under stress and thoughts of grim death, the man dares finally ask, “Who–Who are you…??”
The Deceiver responds in a haughty and soothing tone after a poised chuckle, “You know who I am, Adam. You brought me here, to this… place you chose.”
The dead air stunk of sweat and hell ashes. Adam swallowed nervously, “…I didn’t choose this. And I didn’t bring you here.”
He was in meditation, brooding deeply. “Thoughts, intentions, and actions open portals into that which is represented by light or darkness in the cosmos. You chose your fate.”
Screams of anguish and people being punished pollute the air further. “Am I dreaming..?? This must be death… Is it not…??”
“How amusing you are.” His lips curled into something someone could call a smile of derision, “Life is all there is. Death, what you call death, is but a door into a higher level of consciousness, one level you cannot achieve in this… pitiful form you carry… No, not death. This is something else.”
“What is this then?”
“This is your world, the one you’ve chosen. Everything exists still, no life passes away; your wife, your children, even your dog, they all live. But you can’t see them, you lost that privilege when you chose me into your life.” The air became electric and cool. The bright window form became dark and the scenery through it purely wretched. “There is a balance for all that exists, Adam. You pushed on that balance too far, and life became… well this.”
Silence corroded the dungeon.
The Deceiver pierced his eyes, “Did you think your rebellious nonsense wouldn’t upset the balance of your life? Did you ever think of your family, how your selfish actions would affect them?… No, you were too self-involved. Your ego and your beliefs, thus your illusions mattered most to you. Congratulations on killing them. Congratulations on choosing me.” Then he vanished into thin air.
Tears began streaming down Adam’s face bathed on the memories of his family being killed in a shootout with police. It felt like he finally understood his whole world had come down on him. Several minutes he felt darkness consume his soul, grip his mind with a vise. His screams filled the air with terror!
Suddenly, a ray of electrified light came down, penetrated the jail, and swallowed him whole! His body and mind became light and each cell of his composition was stretched and filled in.
When he woke up next to his wife, his children were jumping on the bed. Covered in sweat and stinking of hell ashes, he ran to his bedroom window: Darkness and wretchedness had gone…
He looked at his wife and kids, then understood that he needed to stop being selfish and thinking about how to bring down the government, others and their nonsense, he understood that following others means being self-centered and radical while praising his own ego in any situation…
“When truth has no burning, then it is philosophy, when it gets burning from the heart, it becomes poetry.” ~ Muhammad Iqbal; British-Indian philosopher, poet, academic, politician, barrister and scholar.
Fire and Ice, Love And Fear
Godly ripples in the ether of mind, Rich essence of me without bind. Monsters and ghouls as rulers behest, Dark and confusing thought stressed.
My way and my step were under siege, Life and Death my tyrannous liege; I had fallen in the whimsical illusion each day, The cruel devastation of my life I did pay.
She was burning coal and I frozen rock, For two opposites met the imminent shock; Love existed but my form never knew, For fear within my wretched soul grew.
The clock had become my foe as well, The rushing entity of misery in Hell. The winds took a message in the fall, You wanted to see me in the ball.
Anxiety and doubt filled my many day and night, Fear had cursed my mind and it allowed no light; Dreams of the fire that consumed my house, The deaths of my dog, children, and spouse.
My face had been severely under fire, But I was marked and living most dire, And the wounds of my heart had no heal, The essence of love from my soul had conceal.
A book of ancient mystery and great lore, A bright and fateful day strengthened my core; It told about poles and degrees of the mental plane, How to transmute fear and reach a higher gain.
The fear stayed but let in some light then, There was this new confidence from the wise man. I chose to give my life one more try, Perhaps developed I had the inner eye.
Danced all night with you and saw your smile, That ball gave me an opportunity with no guile; You were perfect in your dress by me near, I took my lesson, Fire and Ice, Love and Fear.
“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” ~ Lao Tzu; ancient sage, philosopher, and historian.
Colors in the wind“
There is great wisdom in the wind,
Blowing here and there in spring;
Images and messages come to my mind,
Beyond words and voices, more than those two combined.
I remember the past people of mock and laughter,
They said there would not be love for me trial after.
But now I see colors as miracles which communicate
Peace and freedom, the warmth in the healthy fate.
Even the leaf on the tree blesses me,
The flower and the grass, the butterfly and the bee.
My step is of noble and forward move,
My heart is my guide following the groove.
Of the colors I sense in the wind which fill all,
The groove is your energy which does not let me fall.
I cannot see your form but I delight in your love essence
Which shines and warms my very presence,
And that is all I truly need to feel bliss,
My eyes are not blind to love such as this.
“The Conscious Ether“ (Between death and the next life)
Was I ever born…?? Was I ever dead…?? The faces always seemed so mysterious, So unnatural to me, memories like poison spread.
I was lost and then found,
I was me and then you, I was confused;
My world was upside-down, the color, the sound.
The fear was gone, the bliss had disappeared, But the colors, they remained enhanced, The sound was beautiful, the vision had cleared. My body was and wasn’t, but there was an essence… Yes, an essence of peace and freedom I felt clearly, A warm embrace, a conscious ether, a known presence.
Then it came to me, my forgotten past perhaps, Or my forgotten Now. Who knows? It called on my existence, energy links, summons, taps… It was my aura the one spreading into all vision, And then I visited other lands but never traveled, For I was expanded in my conscious condition.
The darkness came and I saw another light, Far into the distance I saw you, Then you floated to me, an angel so bright; The moment grew into sensations I couldn’t comprehend, We were two but then one, I was confused again, More than an angel, a goddess, a godsend…
My full name is Asa Ezequiel Rodriguez (Asael is my entire first name; Hebrew name picked from somewhere within the Bible, meaning “God’s right hand”). I used to be just like you, until a fatal accident changed my life entirely…
Are you ready for this true story…?! If you are, grab your popcorn and cozy blanket, and perhaps that baby pacifier you use when nobody is looking. This will become quite a ride as you read on!
One rainy night my parents and I were coming back home, when a heavily drunk asshole hit our Peugeot (that’s a car, for you Americans that do not know) and sent us all to the near Mar Del Plata’s main hospital (Mar Del Plata, Argentina, where I was born and raised). I had been injured pretty badly, and actually much more than my parents; the ambulance couldn’t revive me as I was in a deep unconscious state, losing blood and seizing every five minutes. Once there, the hospital team did everything they could to bring me back to life, but it was too late, for I was dead, gone from this physical plane.
Several minutes later, I don’t know how or why (I just know that nothing that happens to us human beings is random, all has a purpose in life–even when we do not understand what’s happening) but I returned to life, and greatly changed (not just in physical function but in other aspects as well).
Now, I won’t tell you that while dead or unconscious without pulse I saw some brilliant light or angels or pearly gates swung open or anything like that. Let your imagination fly. There is not enough use of good imagination now-a-days, most people just watches reality TV shows where idiots fight over who’s going to use the toilet next and over who used all the toilet paper. It’s pitiful.
After that, to make it shorter, I acquired certain talents or “conscious endowments.” And in the course of many months, I encountered great abilities head-on (granted they weren’t strong yet, but in firm transition or conscious evolution). My parents, of course, weren’t told anything because they would not have understood (you know, religious parents, or “normal-by-this-society” parents). And at the same time, I needed more time for myself and “to find me” (because I had gotten lost at the shopping mall when I went to buy some underwear). Put it simply, I wanted a job where I could meet great experiences, develop great wisdom in those extraordinary lessons from life itself, so I went in search for one.
So, after months’ search for the right one for me, Mr. Hernandez–a Psychic Investigator and a nice man–gave me the opportunity to earn some cash (some pesos), and I joined his ‘MarDel Retards Paranormal’ agency as an apprentice. (Needless to say, I think he had confused me with a retard, but, to be honest, when I went to my job interview I was loaded with the Novocaine my dentist had pumped in my mouth that morning, so, of course, I was drooling like a river was flowing out of my mouth and I couldn’t talk well; but, on the other hand, that incident did help me get the job, so all worked out great for me.)
Mr. Hernandez had gotten a call from the police dept. to go check out a “especial case for Paranormal Retards”, or a possible murder lead from an “unknown source”. This would be my first case. Although, this time I had stayed at the office because I had needed to use the bathroom very badly, and also because the OfficeMart truck was suppose to deliver a couch and Mr. Hernandez had wanted me to be there to receive it.
The delivery truck was pulling over up front by the sidewalk. You could see the giant display of colors and the words ‘OfficeMart makes it easier to rob your place if you’re not home’ (or some better translation of it from Spanish verbose) printed on the side of it.
Let me now introduce you to the nitty-gritty of the first case which I call…
Booooohh… gives me chills just to think about it… “The Vampire’s Slaughterhouse!”
When Mr. Hernandez came back, we both went to take a look at this ominous house of old-looking existence. To the cellar, where our retarded intuition took us. Once there, my mind was racing. I told myself to calm the fuck down, hold on tight to the three pounds of garlic to scare any vampires, and concentrate! Even having this conscious energy inside of me and this knowledge I had acquired of the supernatural wasn’t enough. I could feel my heart pounding, my hands sweating, while forcing my legs to keep marching to that cellar. And the worst, the smell was getting to me, revolting my stomach. See, I hadn’t shower in a month.
Then I realized night would soon come, and darkness was the perfect playground for any creature or demon. I had to pay attention to signs and sensations, having my surroundings in check at all times, looking for anything with even a teeny tiny presence. Finally we arrived to the cellar–old and partially cracked wood, a few paint scrapings on the doors, vampire vomit all over, and the room smelled like vampires had farted. Very common, I thought.
After we opened wide the heavy doors, we climbed down the stairs…
The first few steps we took were lit by the natural light from the outside (it wasn’t completely dark out yet), then we had to look for the switch to turn on the light as it was getting obscurer. Shit!-– The lights then turned on at the same time, it looked like lightning–a couple of flashes and flickers and then they settled. I noticed it was a large cellar, a lot of red and green blood, and also pee in storage (I had learned these creatures of the night drank the pee of their victims as well, as some kind of ritual), and some boxes containing stuffed Teddy bears on the sides. Did they also sell stuffed bears on the black market…?! Ghastly! Macabre!
A lot of twists and turns. A few rooms at the end, shelves with old and dusty magazines–a lot of vampire’s gay pornography. Everything seemed storage and junk. Suddenly, I tripped over a pile of bras and panties! These bastards also kept them from their victims as souvenirs. Sick Fucks!, I thought.
I couldn’t help but thinking that Demonitus could be part of this! Heisademon I found in the list of popular demons. Andwhatdodemonsdo?—tortureandscarepeople!Goodpeople!
(Oh, by the way, Demonitus had also been the first demon I had seen when I was dead in the hospital; however, back then I had no idea of what it was exactly–a product of my imagination, the memory of a horror movie, a subconscious fear of death itself…?? And then it had appeared next to the coffin of my dead friend. But the real shock for me was that he was fat and carried a big fork around–always thought that demons were fit or at least slim, because the spiritual body tends to have no need for physical food, and thus no need for a big fork either).
And as I kept onward, seconds later, the lights of this section of the cellar went off too leavingusintotaldarkness! I tried to turn the switch back on but it was all riddled with vomit, and it felt like some force was holding the light switch in one position! I tried and tried, and at one point I thought my fingers were about to be broken–the darn thing appeared to be rock! Oh mamma!– The air around me turned cold and heavy! Everywhere I looked was pitch black! My mind started playing tricks on me. I felt a swift touch on my shoulder– “Mr. Hernandez, did you touch me?! I–I’m not gay, dude.”
My confused mind started then coming up with all these frightening images and odd sensations of pure dread that gotten worse as he didn’t answer. “…Mr.–” I swallowed nervously, “Mr. Hernandez, did you–”Jesus!– Again. Someone was definitely in the room! Shit–Who was touching my shoulder, again? I spun halfway. My stance had been rooted to the ground, my feet firm as a rock. But as I turned around I lost my balance, snatched the air trying to get a grip on something, then, SLAAMM!–I dropped down like a bag of potatoes!
‘An eerie someone!’ It all seemed spooky and odd. I noticed I had fallen on top of something, and this something felt like a fat pig. “Mr. Hernan–” Couldn’t finish my thought. What had happened to him? Something had happened to him, something that had occurred in the split of a second. I then tried to remember a noise or something which could have hinted me of his fall, but all had taken place so fast. I was in the dark, confused, overwhelmed, nervous. This ‘eerie someone’ obviously did not want me to be down here–that much I knew at the moment.
I drummed a few on his face. “Mr. Hernandez, are you okay? Are you okay, Mr. Hernandez? … ARE YOU OKAY, YOU FAT PIG?!” I almost lost my marbles. After he squinted a few times and shielded his eyes from the strong light, he came to. By now, the room really smelled of vomit and farts. Not good for my allergies. Hard to breathe as well.
“What–What happened,” he drawled weakly. He then eyed me disoriented as he sat up.
“Are you okay?” I repeated. Christ!– “You have red lipstick kisses all over your face! Did the demon kiss you?!” …But you’re a fat pig; how can anyone wanna kiss you…??’ I thought to myself.
“I–I don’t remember…” he started, “I fell. I must have fainted.” He felt uneasy and odd, which worried me so. His eyes looked lost like a puppy’s, and his facial expression painful and awkward.
“What happened to you?” I pointed at the blood stain. “You are bleeding.” I took a better look at the area. The wounded are was close to his neck. And as I checked nearer, I found very tiny marks not too deep into the muscle–this is where my knowledge of anatomy paid off. They were one above the other, they weren’t life-threatening or anything like that.
But how–?? What–?? Can’t it be possible..?? As I studied the odd marks I also noticed their pattern, and they looked like needles. Honestly, I didn’t know what to make of it. What would I tell him? What was I suppose to say?– Someone had tried to had his way with him? A large group of ghostly ticks in love with his neck, perhaps? …
However, reader, I cannot tell you more, too scary for you.
“Drama is life with the dull bits cut out.” ~ Alfred Hitchcock.
‘Drama’ is indeed derived from the Greek word for ‘Action.’ Drama in your story must be like your life, without the boring parts–for example, you are waiting for the bus, which is boring and has no point of tension, so in your work that part must be taken away and not showed at all, unless something of drama extremely conducive to the story is added. Then, of course, the essence of drama is crisis; however, there is two kinds of crisis, “the hero crisis,” and “the natural crisis.”The hero crisis is, for example, in “Mission Impossible” or “Batman,” where the hero has great abilities, sometimes fantastical and superhuman, something that you do not experience every day in your own life.The natural crisis, for example, in “Office space” or “Manchester by the sea,” where the main character or characters have really normal lives like you and me, but something happens in their normal lives which turns into drama and tension, maybe a bit of chaos and lessons from the story’s character development the audience can learn from.
So, when you are involved in your writing or somehow creative endeavor, remember that drama must keep some kind of tension to grab the audience’s attention, and this at all times; whether little tension or beastly tension, and whether a roller coaster of tension, drama is all tension, the action which absorbs the attention of the viewer or reader. And I repeat the word ‘tension’ because this is a MUST DO in any creative endeavor. Also, remember that you can pick between the two crisis to make tension fit in your story and genre; this reasonable and wise choice will make your story stand out and create reality, even if it is a fantastical story–i.e., reality is about how well the details and the carrying out of the story is evoked in the mind of the viewer.
A great formula for explosive drama is this one: When it comes to the situations or the plot of the story surrounding the protagonist– As the protagonist in your story, for example, becomes less active and more passive, less certain of his inner strength and positive purposes, so it is the ambitions, the behaviors, the wickedness and intentions of those who surround him who now have another characterization in your story. The common compromise here is when the protagonist appears undecided and emotionally deterred for the first three quarters of the piece or art, but then that same protagonist is forced into a definitive commitment in the final quart, a positive action. The protagonist goes through all this hardships and struggles within himself so he can learn strength and wisdom to conclude in a positive note–for example, one of my favorites, as in Rocky, where he is a nobody and really feels like a nobody, but at the end gets inner strength and great love to finalize as a champion off the hard streets.
But more complex and hard to understand for the ‘Unsophisticated audience’ is the drama where the completely passive, undecided and purposeless protagonist does not have any major change of heart. There is always danger of this kind of story not being too popular for the masses; but, on the other hand, there is a depth here that the avant-garde types or more ‘Sophisticated audience’ will admire as true artistic innovation, mostly because it manages to avoid the obvious and delves into the deeper, emotional issues of the human being, as in “The mirror” (1975 Russian film) or “The seventh seal” (1957 film)–i.e., these films, are more philosophical in nature and try to delve into the experience of being human, the beliefs, the judgments, the essence of the mental and emotional conflict these movies, as well as books since it is about all stories in any art form, invite a lot of questions; they do not sermonize nor belittle any specific demographic but instead, it just state different opinions and let’s the audience discuss its deeper meaning and the meaning they will take away for themselves.
So whatever is your drama type, always remember tension and adapt the action to your story.