Archive for April, 2018

LAST DAY FOR FREE KINDLE

Posted: April 30, 2018 in World On The Edge

Free on Kindle Now!!

Posted: April 29, 2018 in World On The Edge

BRIDGE-MAN BURNING: The Sins of a Southern Man

Sequel to A HUNGER IN THE HEART

ARE YOU A NASTY PERSON???

Posted: April 29, 2018 in World On The Edge

Today–at least in politics–people have become plainly nasty, without respect for other human beings. Today in politics, many make up lies about their competition to demean them and ruin their reputations. They say its because they love others. But viciousness certainly does not come from love. In this case, it comes from fear. Fear that emerges from greed. Fear that their competition is winning. Fear that something they have will be taken from them if that happens. And their fear is inhibiting the growth of America and wounding our national legacy.

The Youngbloods were an American band from the 1960’s and 70’s. Despite receiving critical acclaim, they never achieved widespread popularity. Their only U.S. Top 40 entry was “Get Together.” The song was written by an earlier band, The Kingston Trio. Listen to some of the lyrics in that song.

Love is but a song we sing
Fear’s the way we die

Americans have become more and more pliable due to social media. They are encouraged to group and take sides and when they do, they are encouraged to harm, in any way they can, the opposing side. To be called a “nasty person” does not even phase them. They wear the label as a badge.

But when the group acts in a vile way–a way he/she would never undertake alone–are they personally excused from the results? Does the end justify the means?

Nastiness to others is a serious offense to humanity. And spiritually, we will personally be held responsible  for it.

Some may come and some may go
He will surely pass
When the one that left us here
Returns for us at last
We are but a moment’s sunlight
Fading in the grass

Each one of us is fading, whether we be eighteen or eighty. Each one of us is the leader of our own life, its goodness and its evil. We will not be judged as a group. We will be judged individually.

You hold the key to love and fear
All in your trembling hand
Just one key unlocks them both
It’s there at your command

 

FREE ON KINDLE NOW!

Posted: April 28, 2018 in World On The Edge

BRIDGE-MAN BURNING: The Sins of a Southern Man

Sequel to A HUNGER IN THE HEART

Free on Kindle!!!

Posted: April 26, 2018 in World On The Edge

Historical. Southern. Literary.

Two Novels

about the nuisances of love,

and the difficulties of forgiveness.

BOTH FREE on Kindle:

April 26 – May 1

A Hunger in Heart, set in 1955 in fictional Gator Town, Florida, was my debut novel and meant to be the first of two books. Now it’s sequel, Bridge-Man Burning: The Sins of a Southern Man, is finally published. Though each can be enjoyed separately, they go hand-in-hand, so I’m offering both of them for free on Kindle for a short time.

A HUNGER IN THE HEART

Coleman Puttman Bridgeman III is hurt by the love he hungers for. As a boy, he must come to terms with the consequences World War II has had on his family. His shell-shocked father, a decorated hero, stages continual games of war with Coleman against an enemy that only his father can see, while his alcoholic, mother blames Putt’s misfortune–as well as her own afflictions–on the black soldier whose life her husband saved. When Putt is accused of a scandalous crime, the boy’s manipulative grandfather holds Coleman’s mother responsible, bringing about a bitter relationship between mother and son that lasts for years. Coleman’s only affection is for the steadfast gardener, his grandfather’s right-hand man–until a beautiful and sensitive girl moves in next door with her own dysfunctional family. Now a teenager, Coleman falls hard for the girl, his first experience with genuine love. But will he allow her to help him find courage enough to rise above his traumatic childhood and take a step toward forgiveness?

BRIDGE-MAN BURNING: THE SINS OF A SOUTHERN MAN

Coleman leaves his hometown behind, yet carries with him the family blood that runs through his veins and voices of the past that run through his head. In marriage, business and the Vietnam War, Coleman faces life’s most powerful battles where he must confront the weakest, and deepest, parts of himself. Honesty versus dishonesty, faithfulness versus betrayal, and courage versus cowardice, all bring him to the brink of destruction, causing him to question what sort of businessman he truly is, and most especially, what kind of husband he has become. Will he have what it takes to save his marriage to a wife he has betrayed–and yet, sincerely loves? Or will he lose her forever?

Please Share. AND I will be most grateful for your reviews! Thank you!

Some of us feel uneasy about our life, and even afraid. We may feel that life is an unending storm for us, and that we have no control over where the water and wind will take us.

Uncertainty is downright scary when we do not notice the anchors in our life. Of course, anchors in the form of other people are available. If we haven’t made use of them, why not?

Maybe self-pride has taken us over, and we consider only “our way,” until “our way” doesn’t work.

Maybe we have alienated family or friends through petty disagreements neither will forgive.

Maybe there are habits we have that we know are wrong, but we keep them up anyway, feeling guilty.

All these situations cause uncertainty, and are common to everyone at one time or another. But without an anchor, they can become unbearable, until we feel the words, You Are Loved, do not apply to us.

But hear this:

When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
–Isaiah 43:2

These words are about the life-saving anchor we can all have in life–if we choose to grab onto it. The words do not mean that we will have no storms in our life, but that when we do, God’s anchor is available–many times through other human beings, especially those we are close to.

The anchor, because of the great importance in navigation, was regarded in ancient times as a symbol of safety. The Christians, therefore, in adopting the anchor as a symbol of hope in future existence, gave a new and higher signification to a familiar emblem. Just as an anchor secures a boat in rough waters, so does faith in Christ secure us, and indeed, becomes our safety net.

This is no more apparent than in marriage. But to achieve faith in God, and in another person, requires a certain amount of surrender:

Forgiving when we don’t want to forgive.
Realizing that we don’t know all the right answers.
Looking at our real self and what we are doing without making excuses for our wrong actions.
And then asking God to lead us.

When we give up control of our life in favor of God’s plan–done His way, not ours–then we enter onto the road called: Trust. And what does Trust in God prove? It proves His faithfulness. I can certainly say that I’ve seen His faithfulness in the distresses of my own life. And if you look upon your circumstances, whatever they are, with spiritual eyes, I’m sure you will see it, too, and know that you are not alone.


It would be enough to scare us – God’s love. It set fire to a bush in the desert, didn’t it, and smashed open graves and set the dead walking in the dark. Oh, a man like me would run a mile to get away if he felt that love around.—- Graham Greene, The Power and the Glory

 


What can a fiction writer bring to a world with broken wings? For sure, a world like this one is full of  fragmented people–fodder for a writer. And just as sure, a writer will translate human brokenness through his or her own lens. So what is my lens?

Here’s a little about why I write as I do.

For some writers, fiction is an author’s attempt to open a little window on the meaning of human life itself.  Some fiction writers perceive people as good because God made them to be like Him. I am one of them.  I also recognize free will. We can choose not to be like Him, and even choose not follow Him. But the job of a writer who sees people as coming from God, is to translate His goodness in some concrete form for her readers; and that is a difficult job in our world today because many don’t believe in a Creator, and others don’t see our world as good. So what is such a writer to do?

First, I believe this sort of writer will have strong emotion about current events where goodness is not: The murder of children. Debilitating disease. Greed. Arrogance. Sadistic, sexual perversion. Dishonesty. Meanness, and on and on–just check ‘I choose not to follow” on each of The Ten Commandments. So, the paradoxical question for a writer like myself  becomes, “Can interior goodness be found where exterior goodness is not?”

Yes. Our Creator is powerful enough to draw out goodness from atrocities that emanate because of the misuse of human free will. In this writer’s imagination, there is a link between the divinity of God (the supernatural world) with the natural world. The task becomes that of interlocking the two. Representations are created, and specific truths about God’s presence in our world appear in the writer’s mind. She translates it in her settings, characters, and dilemmas. And what she translates is a tenet called grace, both Sanctifying Grace and Actual Grace. Sanctifying Grace, inherited from the God who made us, lives in the soul and stays in the soul. By contrast, Actual grace doesn’t live in the soul; rather, throughout a lifetime, it acts in the soul as divine pushes from God toward His goodness. But those pushes require cooperation. The translating writer understands that a person must accept grace by his own free will; and grace, like love, is sometimes prickly.

A writer who translates grace in a world on edge must first have a good, well-written story. Then she must see a double beginning and ending in everything, and I mean everything, including the awful, current events mentioned above. Along with this, she realizes that knowing reasons why is a human characteristic. She perceives a cause, and an effect that creates another cause, and effect, and so on into infinity. Stories are discovered in her imagination and brought to light by a very intimate flashlight, one that shines a light on the many causes and effects of free will, and on the causes and effects of grace; both working, and often conflicting, in the same human soul.

Over the past twenty years, I have been writing books centered around the many misguided bandages my characters put on their inevitable broken wings, those wounds that life churns out. I’m not getting any younger, and I don’t want to leave behind stacks of paper. So, I am publishing the books I feel are worthy.  There will be others to come, but my latest novel–Bridge-Man Burning: The Sins of a Southern Man–is the sequel to my debut novel, A Hunger in the Heart.  The print copy of Bridge-Man is now up, with Kindle coming soon. Take a look.  I will be offering both on Kindle in the upcoming days, to those who kindly follow this blog.

What will be the spiritual legacy of America’s political leaders to the nation of people they leave behind–our children, and our grandchildren? How many of America’s leaders actually realize their purpose is to be an example of  virtue to America’s citizens?  How many of them ever even speak about VIRTUE?  And yet, virtue is essential to what it means to be a human being, and surely essential to one who sought a role in leadership which has the moral purpose of  making things better, not worse.

A legacy is built over time, not overnight. It is often thought to be money or property willed to a descendent. But the legacy any of us leave to our descendants will be much more than material; it will be spiritual as well. We will pass to those left behind a legacy built on genuine truth, or a legacy of falsity whereby we have attempted to destroy genuine truth most often out of personal greed.

Our country’s spiritual legacy–its moral virtue–affects many, many, people, not only those related to us. For those who lead our country, this should be of special concern.

The moral virtues are attitudes, dispositions, and good habits that govern one’s actions, passions, and conduct according to reason; and are acquired by human effort, which for our leaders means the effort of putting the nation above one’s own selfish purposes.

The cardinal virtues are prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance. How are our political leaders–especially our American Department of Justice showing us those virtues? Where is the prudence, the fortitude, and for heaven sake, where is the temperance?

For the first time in a long while, we have a president who, like each of us, is not a perfect person–but IS a real leader, attempting to build a legacy for America that is built on truth and common sense.  And he is succeeding where others have miserably failed.  But the legacy President Trump is building flies in the face of many on the left who have their own selfish, even immoral, agendas, and so they seek to bring him down by division, distraction, and falsifying the facts with astounding hypocrisy–even imprudently employing our Department of Justice to do it.

Is this the sort of legacy we want for America, for our children and their children? The present anything goes attitude in society and in government is more than dangerous; it can destroy us. This TIME in which we are living is crucial for each one of us. We must be prudent, we must seek justice with courage and thoughtful self-discipline. Because at this moment in time, we are creating the husk of  the legacy we will pass on.

Today, we have a golden opportunity to finally Make America Great Again, but only if the lack of prudence by some of our leaders is outweighed by fortitude from the majority.