My Interview with Neil Haley

I had the pleasure and honor to speak with one of the country’s top educational radio talk show personalities, Neil Haley of Total Education Radio about the Left Hand of Light. Our conversation can be found here in MP3 format.

My interview starts at about 30 minutes in, so fast forward if you don’t have a lot of time.

Lesson learned: Never forget to promote one’s web site. It sounds cheesy when I hear it on the radio, but its effective and it works and its the best way for people that want to hear what you have to say to find you! I can’t believe I forgot even after Neil asked me to! 😛

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Writer’s Digest Review of Transmissions to the Mystic Nebula

Recently I entered Transmissions to the Mystic Nebula into a self-published book contest. I didn’t win (what the heck?!) but I received this review from one of the judges that impressed me with how observant the reader was to the little details that went into making the book. Nothing makes an author more happy than a thoughtful (and vocal) reader. Don’t forget you can buy this book on Amazon and Smashwords!

The title, cover, and even the table of contents of TRANSMISSIONS TO THE MYSTIC NEBULA suggest a traditional, even stereotypical, form of science fiction, a world of spaceships, robots, aliens, and intergalactic conquest. Instead, the poet fastens his eyes on the heavens with his feet firmly on planet Earth as he connects our very human world with astronomy, physics, mythologies, and the paranormal. As the poet tells a love interest in “Ash in My Lungs,” “I brought you here to show you / this fragile wild of my soul, / the dark things that connect us.” The poet sets up the collection with a “researcher’s note” describing a cyber-poet, awash in the hyper-communications of a modern, wired world, who identifies a distant nebula with a backyard telescope and sends transmissions of poems in an effort to communicate and be heard. This gives the collection an authentic science fiction frame, reinforced by internal art that echoes the intriguing cover image and includes status updates as the transmission progresses. However, what makes these poems so strong is that, taken out of this context, they are impressive, accomplished creations that succeed on their stand-alone merits. The poet offers a beautifully written mix of forms and free verse, poems in which he explores love, sex, memories, seasons, and death. Although he hasn’t organized the poems into sections, the verses are ordered carefully so the flow keeps the whole connected. It’s interesting that the early poems are filled with celestial imagery that eventually gives way to more gravity-bound themes, ultimately leading to poems about death and the departed. In the end, though, the final graphic of the collection says delivery of the transmission is confirmed, and the poet adds a final, hopeful message, “I know you’re out there. I’m waiting.” Physically, everything about the book is attractive and professionally done. The poet is to be congratulated on a memorable first book of fresh and fine poetry, a true joy for the reader.

– Judge, Writer’s Digest 21st Annual Self-Published Book Awards

Long time coming

ImageIts been 30 years in the making, but The Left Hand of Light is almost complete! The book will be coming out this Thanksgiving. I know many of you have been patiently waiting for its arrival and I am blessed to have so many that are interested in the book. I hope it will inspire you and move you as much as it has me.

Now comes the technical part: Transforming the work into e-book and print-on-demand formats.

Then will come the hard part: Convincing you to buy a few copies!

Speaking of Energy Privacy

Today, I’ll be speaking at the annual meeting of the Conference of California Public Utility Counsel (CCPUC) on the important topic of energy privacy.

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Pixar’s Rules of Storytelling

English: Pixar Animation Studios company logo ...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For you writers out there, a friend of mine pointed me to a great link that describes 22 “rules” for storytelling that is a great tool for validating your own story line against. A Pixar artist named Emma Coats apparently learned these from her colleagues and tweeted these in the form of “story basics” back in 2011.

I especially like #4 because it’s a great tool to help you figure out your entire story in the form of a 30 second elevator speech!

#7 also resonates with me because I like to know where I’m going before I get there. That was exactly how I wrote The Left Hand of Light!

Revelations

Sitting alone in the Chinese restaurant, pouring a cup of jasmine tea, I suddenly realized I could do anything–anything–I wanted and was rocked momentarily by a boomcake of freedom known only to children and the otherworldly.

Blogging fun today!

This geeky poet gets to have some fun showing other poets how to use WordPress today! If you’re anywhere near Carlsbad, CA and want to come by and say hi at the Cole Library, be sure to bring your laptop!

Blogging workshop details here

Inspiration is supernatural

What if inspiration comes from ghosts whispering in our ears?

Moving to the finish

Its finally finished. The edits to the THE LEFT HAND OF LIGHT are complete. Its been a long and transformational journey. I have spent more tears than I knew I had in me. Soon it will be time to share this effort with you. I’m anxious. I’m excited. I can’t help but wonder what you all will think of this thing I have created. Creating art forces one to stand naked before the world. When you read it, will you see me? Have I revealed too much? Will it evoke in you what it does in me every time I turn its pages?

Let’s find out together. Always together.

Dare We Squander

Dare we squander all our years not being in love with something or with someone?