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Friday Features’

Guest talks about

Ascribing human characteristics to an inanimate object

by

Linda Lee Greene

So often I think that if I keep my eyes closed, I can close out the ring of the wind chime that hangs just beyond my bedroom window from a corner beam of my patio roof. I can tell by the darkness beyond my shuttered eyelids that it is not yet dawn, possibly even the middle of the night. Like Tarzan the Rooster on my grandparent’s farm that proclaimed each rising morning when I was a youngster, this wind chime is pushy in its determination to heave me awake no matter the hour—for the reason, it seems, that it can no longer hold in its enthusiasm to have me embrace a new day. Call me nuts to ascribe human characteristics to an inanimate object, but it is nothing new in our history. In fact, the convoluted term for such a predilection is “anthropomorphism.” If nothing else, this time of isolation that is a condition of the coronavirus pandemic is likely to draw us into deeper contemplation than ever before—and in my reflections, anthropomorphism occupies me quite a lot in the configuration of one of my wind chimes. An inconvenient sidebar to my fascination with it is that it represents my most precious and yet challenging relationship.

Apart from the fascinating history that wind chimes enjoy in chronicles of ancient Rome, China, India, and Japan with which evil eyes, malevolent spirits, and even pesky birds were warded off by wind chimes suspended from roofs of temples, pagodas, and homes, members of those cultures also turned to them to draw power and good luck to themselves. It occurs to me that there is another application of these delightful instruments of sound that is less considered, one that hides within the universe’s quirky ways of forcing us to face our most troublesome bumps on our road to nirvana.

The oldest of the three wind chimes in my possession was given to me by my mother not long before her death 28 years ago. It is pared-down and less impressive than the other two, modest is a better word for it—a thing appearing undiminished by ego, like my mother. Also like her, it speaks to me only when I speak to it—primarily in my thoughts. When she was alive, my mother never gave me advice about anything. Her retort whenever I solicited her advice was, “Why are you asking me? You’re smarter than I am!” That seems a wholly inadequate response to a daughter from her mother. As you can imagine, owing to this reason if no other, my mother is my Everest, the mountain I must climb to make it to nirvana. I am not a mountain climber, and for that reason, I understand that we will continue to travel together throughout time until we smooth the path of our shared journey.

Meanwhile, I find a measure of comfort in having arrived at some understanding of her. I see that the classic battle between the heart and mind of human beings found no ground whatsoever within my mother. Not that she didn’t have a fine mind—she was as smart as a tack. But my mother had an intuitive sense that “the center of man is not the mind but the heart. The New Testament [of the Bible] teaches that the heart is the main organ of psychic and spiritual life…”[1] The Bible’s Song of Songs 5:2 tells us, “I sleep; but my heart keeps watch.” That is my mother.

My mother also was wise to the fact that she served me best in allowing me to get acquainted with my own substance, to learn the lesson of bearing my own pain, on my own. She knew me better than I know myself.

I have always believed that my mother’s spirit lives in the wind chime she gave to me. It is the talisman she left behind for me. My mother’s death was a slow but a certain one, and although she didn’t say as much, I think she knew I would discover its secret—its secret that I would hear her in the voice of that little wind chime after she was gone—if only I would heed it.

“2018 American Fiction Awards Cross-Genre Finalist” All #families have their secrets but some are much darker than others. Captivating psychological suspense in multi-award-winning author, Linda Lee Greene’s Cradle of the Serpent.

Greene weaves a tale that brims with unimaginable twists and turns in a long-term marriage. Enthralling journeys into the human psyche, romantic love, archaeology, and American Indian history carry the reader into archaeologist Lily Light’s quest to come to terms with the catastrophic consequences of her husband’s infidelity.

The trauma throws Lily into amazing episodes of past-life regression in which she takes on the persona of a young maiden named White Flower, a tribal member of the long-ago builders of Ohio’s Great Serpent Mound. White Flower’s life of thousands of years before reveals to Lily the unexpected path to her own salvation.

Lily Light is an archaeologist who works at the Great Serpent Mound in Ohio. Her work opened her to experiences, knowledge, and beliefs she never knew existed. Psychotherapist Michael Neeson is Lily’s therapist and guide in her dream travels.

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Multi-award-winning author and artist Linda Lee Greene describes her life as a telescope that when trained on her past reveals how each piece of it, whether good or bad or in-between, was necessary in the unfoldment of her fine art and literary paths.

Greene moved from farm-girl to city-girl; dance instructor to wife, mother, and homemaker; divorcee to single-working-mom and adult-college-student; and interior designer to multi-award-winning artist and author, essayist, and blogger. It was decades of challenging life experiences and debilitating, chronic illness that gave birth to her dormant flair for art and writing. Greene was three days shy of her fifty-seventh birthday when her creative spirit took a hold of her.

She found her way to her lonely easel soon thereafter. Since then Greene has accepted commissions and displayed her artwork in shows and galleries in and around the USA. She is also a member of artist and writer associations.

Visit Linda on her blog and join her on Facebook.

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Friday Features’

Guest talks about

How to Save the Life of an Author

by

Linda Lee Greene

BOOKWORM  – Watercolor painting by Linda Lee Greene

It is a fact that “Muse,” that mysterious and severe task-master chains authors to their writing instruments for weeks, or months, and sometimes years at a time. They aren’t allowed to eat, or brush their teeth, or bathe, or sleep. They almost never get to see other human beings. Muse makes them ignore the ring of the doorbell and the phone, and pull the drapes and close the blinds. Nothing, nothing, nothing must get in the way of scratching down those precious lines. At long last the book is done—finished—complete! And authors wait; they wait; they wait for feedback from readers, feedback that is the lifeblood of writers, that keeps them motivated, that keeps them sane, that rescues their self-esteem, and that very well might save their life!

Accumulating reader reviews of books is a huge hurdle for authors, and the truth is that without reviews, books don’t stand a chance of reaching a wide audience, even though they might be very worthwhile reads. Nowadays, by way of cyberspace, something like 4,500 new books per day hit the bookseller market, a large percentage of that number written and self-published by highly talented and fearless authors. The crushing heap of competition they are under demands that many good reviews on Amazon and/or Goodreads is the best, and perhaps, the only way they can crawl out from under the pile and receive the notice they deserve.

A lot of readers would like to post reviews but feel intimidated by the process. You’re in luck. You can write something as simple as “I loved it!” or “This is one of the best books I’ve ever read!” or “I couldn’t put it down!” If you didn’t like the book, explain the reason in the review because that’s information the author needs to be a better writer.

Please support authors by posting reviews of their books, especially at Amazon.com. All you have to do is go to Amazon and type in the name of the book. When the correct page comes up, click onto the space on the right indicating the number of current reviews. The reviews page comes up. You will see a series of five stars on the left side of the page. Click onto the star that corresponds with your rating of the book. The fifth star on the right indicates the highest rating. A dialog box in which to type your review is directly below the stars. And below that, a box shows in which to title your review. When you have done all these things, click “submit” at the bottom of the page. And wallah—you’ve saved the life of a hard-working and lonely author!

My crime thriller novel, A Chance at the Moon is on Amazon. I welcome your review.

Was it chance or destiny’s hand behind a man and a woman’s curious encounter at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas? The cards fold, their hearts open, and a match strikes, flames that sizzle their hearts and souls. Can they have the moon and the stars, too? Or is she too dangerous? Is he? Can their love withstand betrayal? Can it endure murder?

While the cards at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas fail to distract them from their troubled pasts, on the side, the actress and the gambler play a game of ‘will they won’t they’ romance. Meanwhile, an otherworldly hand also has a big stake in the game. Unexpected secrets unfold brimming with dangerous consequences, and finally, a strange brand of salvation.

Amid the seductions of Las Vegas, Nevada and an idyllic coffee plantation on Hawai’i’s Big Island, a sextet of opposites converge within a shared fate: a glamorous movie-star courting distractions from her troubled past; her shell-shocked bodyguards clutching handholds out of their hardscrabble lives; a dropout Hawaiian nuclear physicist gambling his way back home; a Navajo rancher seeking cleansing for harming Mother Earth; and from its lofty perch, the Hawaiian’s guardian spirit conjured as his pet raven, conducting this symphony of soul odysseys.

The Cast of Characters
Actress, Olivia Montoyo Simms escapes the shadow of her mother’s gruesome murder and the relentless demands of Hollywood and loses herself in the cards at Las Vegas casinos. But like hounds on the scent, the scandal tracks her. And true to her history, it shows up in the person of dashing Hawaiian gambler, Koa Kalua’i. Neither of them are strangers at taking risks and too often losing. Will they win in their chance at the moon this time?

In Hawaiian cosmology, Aumakuas are guardian spirits whom many believe to manifest in physical form. Koa Kalua’i knows the tenet to be true, because Raven has not only been his winged-pet since the earliest days of his childhood on his family’s coffee plantation on Hawaii’s Big Island, but also his Aumakua. They make a remarkable pair, dedicated to righting wrongs.

Born and raised in Las Vegas, and orphaned as little kids, twin brothers Nicholas and Tobias Plato grew up tough but tenderhearted, qualities they put to use as actress, Olivia Montoyo Simms’ bodyguards. Who knew that Nicholas would play such a pivotal role in Olivia’s life: her most trusted friend and guardian, and in the end, her savior?

Navajo rancher and computer geek, Sam Whitehorse uncovers a secret, terrorist stockpile of materiel burrowed in the side of one his people’s sacred mountains in Nevada. It is a threat that he and Las Vegas gambler, Koa Kalua’i must expose and eliminate, but potential government involvement in the matter complicates such an offensive. And why does actress, Olivia Montoyo Simms insert herself into the whole affair?

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Multi-award-winning author and artist Linda Lee Greene describes her life as a telescope that when trained on her past reveals how each piece of it, whether good or bad or in-between, was necessary in the unfoldment of her fine art and literary paths.

Greene moved from farm-girl to city-girl; dance instructor to wife, mother, and homemaker; divorcee to single-working-mom and adult-college-student; and interior designer to multi-award-winning artist and author, essayist, and blogger, it was decades of challenging life experiences and debilitating, chronic illness that gave birth to her dormant flair for art and writing. Greene was three days shy of her fifty-seventh birthday when her creative spirit took a strong hold.

She found her way to her lonely easel soon thereafter. Since then Greene has accepted commissions and displayed her artwork in shows and galleries in and around the USA. She is also a member of artist and writer associations.

Visit Linda at her online art gallery and join her on Facebook. Linda loves to hear from readers so feel free to email her. Blog: http://Ingoodcompanyohio.blogspot.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/LindaLeeGreeneAuthor
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/LindaLeeGreeneAuthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LLGreeneAuthor
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest/LindaLeeGreene/

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