Archive for the ‘World On The Edge’ Category

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 Every person we meet has what it takes to be a character in a novel.

 Every person we meet has a propensity to do certain things, and because of this, his/her intellect judges those things as good for them or not good for them, depending upon what their goal is.

 Every person, including ourselves, makes choices, knowing what we should do, or should not do; then we play out our choice through action that in some way, always involves another person.

  Oh yes, in real life, each of us has a story, too!  And that story–our own story–follows us to the end of our days on Earth, taking us to eternal life, or eternal damnation, depending upon the choices we make and the actions we take.

The main characters in novels must change, one way or the other, or there is no novel. Each of us on Earth has the same capability of change in order to achieve our highest end. But not every novel has a happy ending. Not every protagonist wins, same as in human life. However, a novel is based on an author’s chosen standard with which the characters are charged. The world’s greatest novels point to the higher standard, though the characters may never achieve it.

It is the same for us. As human beings, we are charged with certain standards. We are not meant to hate, but to love. We are not meant to lie, but to speak the truth. We are not meant to steal, but to share what we have. We are not meant to kill–not an innocent child in the womb, an enemy, or a neighbor.  We know within ourselves what is right and just, but sometimes we do the opposite. Why? Because we choose wrongly when we forget who we are. This is so obvious today.

In the words of one great novelist: If we Americans are to survive it will have to be because we choose and elect and defend to be first of all Americans; to present to the world one homogeneous and unbroken front, whether of white Americans or black ones or purple or blue or green… If we in America have reached that point in our desperate culture when we must murder children, no matter for what reason or what color, we don’t deserve to survive, and probably won’t.–  William Faulkner

In a novel, the actions of evil often shine out the good. Struggle or suffering by the protagonist often shows him or her a way to the good because he chooses to make his way through the struggle. Struggle is the way of all life; all of life struggles to be born, and then struggles to stay alive. And all of life yearns for love. We can certainly see this in animals, in our pets that want to be stroked or held. It is obvious that every human life needs love because we all aspire to it.

Each of our life stories has been given to us by the loving God who made us, by the Creator who designed us as innocent children, designed us in His likeness with free will, the ability to imagine, the ability to remember and act on those memories, the capability of loving and accepting love from others, and most of all, the capability of showing mercy, even to those who have hurt us.

A great novelist puts purpose into the words he/she writes. Characters have purpose, settings have purpose, everyday actions and words have purpose. Nothing is insignificant or unimportant to the ultimate novelist. Therefore, I see God as the most perfect and greatest novelist, giving each of His characters everything they need to achieve their end in this great scheme of life, but also the freedom to choose or not to choose HIM. We are all writing the novel of our lives, the only novel for which we alone will be responsible. If presently, it seems to be a novel we are not proud of, we still have time to change it into one that will be pleasing to ourselves, and to God.

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be. –Psalm 139: 13-18

A sin may, at first, seem a small thing. It may even have a hint of conscience, until it becomes habitual and infectious to everyone around it. Love also begins small, becomes habitual, and infectious as well. Except love is honorable in the human person, while sin degrades his or her soul.

Of course, sin is all around us. It surely happens in politics since it is made up of many people with ambition, people who ignore goodness if it interferes with their political goals. A few examples of some politicians ignoring of goodness are these: the taking of a human life in the womb, the mistaken confusion that we can change our own gender, or the misrepresentation of what marriage truthfully is. These acts demean us as human beings created by God. And yet, each one of us can choose to agree, and even do, any of them.

This is why we use other human beings for our own ends, ignoring their God-given value.  This is why the truthful family, based upon the sacrament of marriage, is being negatively affected. This is why the deep responsibility to guide children who come from that marriage is being overlooked. This is why it is imperative to look upward to God for guidance, rather than looking around at the temporary world we live in. Except, genuine love isn’t easy, has never been easy, and will never be easy.

Taking the easy way out through wrong behaviors, decays not only ourselves, but also, spreads like a virus to others.

In my new Southern Gothic novel, ABSENCE, This is what happens to James Greene, a southern farmer who will do whatever he has to do, even if it is evil, to keep the farm he sees as his legacy from disappearing. This is also what happens to us when we forget who we really are, and who we come from. Just as James Greene, in the floods and droughts of life, we listen to false voices, swallow false precepts, and fall into corruption rather than goodness. We lose the ones we love, and find ourselves suffering, totally lost, and miserable. Can we recoup?  In our loneliness, are there people who can show us the way back? And could those people possibly be the ones we have hurt?

ABSENCE is foremost the story of love’s restoration between James Greene and his wife of many years, and between James’s son, William, and his new, second wife. In the mix, is Cecilia, the daughter and sister they maligned, who disappeared from their view, but will not let go of their minds. It is also the story of innocence in the persons of two children who strive to keep the entirety of their family in tact.

Here are some reviews:

High Caliber fiction. The characters are superbly drawn, though at times, I didn’t like some of them very much—just as it is in real life. And yet, I pulled for these characters, especially James Greene. It is a story about losing one’s soul, and finding it again. A great read.

Renewed love is a theme in this novel, along with the struggle between human nature and the nature of the world. Discord in a family of farmers, comes when floods and droughts drastically affect their livelihood. But when James Greene actually buys a baby to replace his still-born child, then presents it to his unknowing wife, Katy, as her own, he is caught in a web in which despicable havoc ensues.

Moves fast enough to keep your interest, but slow enough to savor the significance between the lines. The Greene family is beset with problems stemming from the heart of each character. The question is, will they solve those problems?

From Joseph Pearce, the author of numerous literary works.  Visit his website at jpearce.co. ~Those who have read Kaye Park Hinckley’s earlier novels will know that she is one of the most exciting and gifted writers of contemporary faith-inspired fiction. This latest offering does not disappoint. Absence will further establish Mrs. Hinckley’s hard-earned reputation as a teller of gritty and gripping stories infused with subtle hints of the redemptive power of grace.

From Dena Hunt, author of award-winning novels, Treason and The Lion’s Heart ~Hinckley does it again. Absence put me in mind of Faulkner as a generation-transcending saga set in the South. But unlike Faulkner, Hinckley does not leave the reader feeling burdened by the tragic consequences of the sins of the fathers visited upon their children. Instead, Hinckley enlightens, revealing the indissolubility of love and truth, and restoring love and life. A terrific read.

From Meggie Daly, author of Bead by Bead ~”Absence” is the sixth book by Kaye Park Hinckley that I have read and loved. “Absence” and the “Wind that Shakes the Corn” are my all-time favorites. While reading “Absence,” I forced myself to go slowly to savor her sentences like an excellent meal that I didn’t want to end. The author “paints” compelling personifications of good and evil as three generations of characters battle internal demons and nature. The plot in “Absence” is intricate, layered, and surprising up until the last page. Themes of longing, abandonment, forgiveness, callousness, regret, unconditional love, and mercy will stay with the reader long after finishing the book. I can’t recommend this book highly enough—a masterpiece!

If you would like to download, read and review ABSENCE FOR FREE on NetGalley, here is the link: https://www.netgalley.com/widget/250537/redeem/cd423971f343f9990557881eee3501d3980a4a7a225bd6165ff98e0498402d9d

#ABSENCE  #NETGALLEY

Because there is no novel with better themes of human sin, contrition, and love’s restoration than Victor Hugo’s Les Miserable, portrayed beautifully in the musical production.

 

 

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PSALM 55
1 Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea;
2 hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught
3 because of what my enemy is saying, because of the threats of the wicked; for they
bring down suffering on me and assail me in their anger.
4 My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen on me.
5 Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me.
6 I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.
7 I would flee far away and stay in the desert;
 
8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.”
9 Lord, confuse the wicked, confound their words, for I see violence and strife in the city.
10 Day and night they prowl about on its walls; malice and abuse are within it.
11 Destructive forces are at work in the city; threats and lies never leave its streets.
12 If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it; if a foe were rising against me, I could hide.
13 But it is you, a man like myself, my companion, my close friend,
14 with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship at the house of God, as we walked about among the worshipers.
15 Let death take my enemies by surprise; let them go down alive to the realm of the dead, for evil finds lodging among them.
16 As for me, I call to God, and the LORD saves me.
17 Evening, morning and noon I cry out in distress, and he hears my voice.
18 He rescues me unharmed from the battle waged against me, even though many oppose me.
19 God, who is enthroned from of old, who does not change— he will hear them and humble them, because they have no fear of God.
20 My companion attacks his friends; he violates his covenant.
21 His talk is smooth as butter, yet war is in his heart; his words are more soothing than oil, yet they are drawn swords.
22 Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.
23 But you, God, will bring down the wicked into the pit of decay; the bloodthirsty and deceitful will not live out half their days. But as for me, I trust in you.

 

Dark Nights ? ??

Posted: May 1, 2020 in World On The Edge
Dark Night

by greyerbaby, 2015, MorgueFile.com

In these trying times, many may be experiencing a “dark night of the soul”– deep depression, a spiritual crisis, the collapse of meaning and purpose in life, even the loss of something, or someone, who meant everything to us?

Years ago, I experienced something like that. And I can tell you that it is temporary. You will come out of it. And you may be a better person because of it. You may even be a totally different person than you thought you were.

So, hang on.

Trust in God.

Even if you feel completely alone. Even if you think no person and no thing can help you. Even if you’ve tried everything, but there’s nowhere to go, no one to turn to, and you feel helpless. And even if you think you’re defeated—hang on.

And in the luck of night
In secret places where no other spied
I went without my sight
Without a light to guide
Except the heart that lit me from inside.

It guided me and shone
Surer than noonday sunlight over me,
And lead me to the one
Whom only I could see
Deep in a place where only we could be.
………..two stanzas from Dark Night of the Soul, by Saint John of the Cross

No one else can actually see our very personal dark night. We can create an appearance that all is well, while inside our heart is breaking. At times, I even thought if I had a fatal disease, it would be better than what I was going through–at least it would be apparent to someone. But what I didn’t realize is that I wasn’t alone. Even if I couldn’t see where I was going myself, someone was seeing me along the way. I trusted I would be led. And I was.

Dark nights are temporary. I can’t stress that enough. On any day— within a minute, or second— what was so dark can take on light again.

You are so loved by God!

Don’t give up. Surrender to divine guidance. And Trust.

 

Enjoy. And please leave a review on Amazon or Goodreads. Thank You !!

Absence Cover (1)

I’m offering YOU my new novel, Absence, FREE ON KINDLE (April 14 -16). And I’m offering it FREE for one reason: YOUR REVIEW. Please download it and after you’ve read it, please leave a short, honest review on Amazon. Reviews are an author’s life-blood–so important to a book she has spent years writing. So I thank you for taking the time to leave a few words.

Already,  there is much-appreciated praise for ABSENCE from two highly respected authors.

~Those who have read Kaye Park Hinckley’s earlier novels will know that she is one of the most exciting and gifted writers of contemporary faith-inspired fiction. This latest offering does not disappoint. Absence will further establish Mrs. Hinckley’s hard-earned reputation as a teller of gritty and gripping stories infused with subtle hints of the redemptive power of grace.   — Joseph Pearce, the author of numerous literary works.  Visit his website at jpearce.co.

~Hinckley does it again. Absence put me in mind of Faulkner as a generation-transcending saga set in the South. But unlike Faulkner, Hinckley does not leave the reader feeling burdened by the tragic consequences of the sins of the fathers visited upon their children. Instead, Hinckley enlightens, revealing the indissolubility of love and truth, and restoring love and life. A terrific read. — Dena Hunt, author of award-winning novels, Treason and The Lion’s Heart

ABSENCE is a Southern Gothic  novel and a mystery in the deepest sense of the word, about marriage, about fathers and sons, mothers and daughters,and brothers and sisters; all backed into corners and at odds with each other as they struggle with their human nature and their dependence upon the Nature of Earth.

Excerpt from ABSENCE. Page 96. James confronts his son, William.

“Nature betrays us, boy! It turns on us, and sometimes it takes what we love. But I won’t sit down for that. I’ll fight against it every time. I won’t let it destroy us, no matter what I have to do!”

“What can you do? You’re a man—one man. You can’t tame a river, and you can’t stop a storm.”

“Don’t tell me what I can’t do, boy. I can do it because I’m part of it. I have a nature, too. The nature of a man. And it’s made me mean and strong, just as mean and strong as those floods and droughts. I ain’t no a whiner. I ain’t showing no weakness. Show weakness to your enemy, he’ll put a knife in your side, slice you up and down, and leave you for dead.”

“An enemy? You talk like Nature’s a person.”

“Oh, it ain’t a person. No, not a person! Nature’s bigger than that. It’s the biggest of big things. It’s the Daddy of all we got, but if it tries to steal something from us, we got to be nasty enough to fight against it. We’re men, and that’s what we’re put here to do.”

ABSENCE is my ninth book of fiction. A first draft of the novel was a William Faulkner/ William Wisdom Competition Finalist, as are several of my other novels.

Other Writing Awards include:

2018 Independent Press Award Winner for “The Wind that Shakes the Corn: Memoirs of a Scots Irish Woman

2019 Independent Press Award Winner for “The Ghosts of Faithful”

2019 NYC Big Book Award, “The Ghosts of Faithful”

2019 American Fiction Award Finalist, “The Ghosts of Faithful.”

BOOK TRAILER for ABSENCE:

FAITH. NOT FEAR.

Posted: March 31, 2020 in World On The Edge

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When we feel the world crashing down upon us, we are fearful and look for answers to our problems. We want to fix them, right here and now, but we may not be in control of the solution. What a relief it is to allow someone else to lead us, someone we TRUST; and then, with confidence, follow their lead.

The most secure place to put our trust is in God. And when we trust in Him, He will lead us. When we let go, like a frightened child standing on the pool’s edge, and jump into our Father’s arms with faith; he will not only catch us and keep us from drowning, he will teach us to swim.

Of course, it takes courage to overcome fear with faith. Will we jump anyway?

I have seen God’s work in my own life. I have experienced His loving leadership through events I thought I could not possibly survive, physically or emotionally.  When I tried to handle everything on my own, I was closing off God’s presence in my life, and couldn’t take advantage of the grace He offered me when I needed it most. And I surely needed that grace!

I found that trusting in God is a continuous mindset–always a first ‘go to’ — that brings a real peace.

God may teach us through another person, a person who in narrow-mindedness, we may have judged too severely by a first impression (how they dressed, how attractive they were, how they spoke, smelled, or walked). That person may be different from our image of who we think a person we could follow should be. Sometimes, we may even see that person as ‘in our way.’ And so, we circumvent them, and never get to discover the answer God had in mind to give us through them. Realize that every human being has something to offer, even a surprising answer to our suffering.

In our life journey, the innocence we were all born with will leave us. We will be broken in some way. There may have already been a time when everything changed for you, too, and your life seemed in ruins. Although, none of us wish for brokenness, all of us will face suffering. What sort of action do we take when that happens? Do we moan and groan about the trouble that has befallen us? Do we strike out at others? Do we wind ourselves up like a tight ball of yarn, wishing the world would go away and leave us wadded up in our misery. I did it all that—until I paid attention to God’s grace and allowed it to unwind inside me with surprising results.

If we give grace a chance. If we have faith, not fear, our inner sight will change. We will make an attempt to understand how much God loves us, and when we understand that, we will see things differently. We will no longer be broken, will be ‘put together,’ able to trust our lives to Him, and to follow Him.

And never should we forget that we may be the answer to what another human being needs. Seeing another’s divinity and honoring it is a sure way to express our own. We are, all of us, intended to be God’s expression of love in this world.

Our earthly life, like a beautiful piece of pottery, is fragile and easily shattered, not only by things outside of our control, but many times by our own sins. And of course, our life does not last forever. The genuine treasure of this life is that it continues beyond the container of our bodies. It is not temporary, but eternal. It is Faith, not fear, that will give us everlasting life.

For this momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.–Corinthians 4:17-18

Birds cover Am I shouting loud enough to be heard through my writing?

I often wonder–because it’s what I want to do.

I want to portray the world I see through a Christian lens, and the world I see is not a sweet and fluffy world. Not anymore, if it ever was. So don’t expect that in these stories.

Ours has become a raw world, on the edge of losing the reality of absolute Truth–which by the way is not defined as our opinion. And each of us is individually guilty of nudging society toward the Lie.

When our goal in life is only whatever makes US feel good. When it’s all about ME. When my ambitions always go ahead of others. My satisfactions. My addictions. My face, and only my face, in front of the crowd, or the camera, or the photographer. When YOUR face doesn’t matter because the goal of MY life is ME. When those we look up to–leaders from every facet of society–do the same; we promote the Lie that says, I am God. It is a Lie that will literally kill us, individually, and as a nation.

My stories reflect these deadly, human attitudes, but I hope they reflect something else, too. That we can re-discover the Truth about who we were created to be. Because we are meant to be more than examples of humanity’s flaws. We we are meant to be, and to live, as if we are children of a flawless God. Our attempt to do this–to allow God’s Grace to work within us–can re-spark us, until in Truth, we are alive again.

Everyone on the earth is born with two, innate possibilities for living out his or her time here. It’s our choice. Will we live out goodness, or evil? My NOVELS and stories are about the choice we all have, and how an individual character handles it. I hope you’ll read them. And if you like, critique them, too.

From the time a human being comes to the age of reason, he or she will be confronted with error and truth. Because we are human we have the ability to weight them both, and to choose between them; all this from a young age — which is why it is so important to teach a set of high values to children, because these choices are what will ultimately form individual character. If at sometime, we glance into the mirror and don’t like the person we see looking back at us, it is still possible to change. Our ability to decide never leaves us. We will live and die with the choices we make.

Our main concern in forming good character for ourselves and our children should first be recognizing the difference between error and Truth. I attempt to address this in my stories; stories that begin in the human heart when Truth is exchanged for the lies of the moment.

It is a human choice when hatred replaces love because my new enemy doesn’t look or think like me.
It is a choice when anger becomes a fist to the face of a wife, or child, or friend.
It is a choice when a hidden hand steals because what it has seems not enough.
It is a choice when every hunger–lust, greed, power–must be satisfied.
It is a choice when my place in the sun is secured by lies and dishonesty toward my fellow human beings.
It is a choice to destroy innocent human life.

It is also a choice to do nothing and allow recognized evil to continue.

As a human being we not only HAVE choices, we are RESPONSIBLE for the choices we make. The way of our created world is not toward an anything goes attitude, or a society without common decency.

Man is a being with free will; therefore, each man is potentially good or evil, and it’s up to him and only him (through his reasoning mind) to decide which he wants to be. — Ayn Rand

If our choices do not make us feel good about ourselves, then by the standard set in our hearts, they are failings. So, after our failings, what is possible? Contrition, forgiveness, and redemption–or a puffed-up pride that will not allow us to admit that we have failed, that we ought to forgive, or that we need to be redeemed?

My stories are Southern Gothic fiction containing those themes–stories about what it means to be an imperfect person living in an imperfect world.

There may be a time in life when one is tired of everything and feels as if all one does is wrong, and there maybe some truth in it- do you think this is a feeling one must try to forget and to banish, or is it ‘the longing for God,’ which one must not fear, but cherish to see if it may bring us some good? Is it ‘the longing for God’ which leads us to make a choice which we never regret? Let us keep courage and try to be patient and gentle. And not mind being eccentric, and make distinction between good and evil. –Vincent van Gogh


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