SPOTLIGHT SUNDAY – KERRIE LEPAI JONES “MY FIRST DATE WITH THE BLUES!”

Welcome to another Sunday Spotlight! I am SO excited about the music artist I am turning my blog over to today and I know you are going to enjoy learning about her! Take it away, Kerrie!

For as long as I can remember, there was only one thing I wanted to be when I grew up ― a singer. As a small girl, I remember watching the black-and-white Shirley Temple movies. I just loved them. I would daydream and picture myself doing everything she did. It was always like that for me no matter who I saw singing on the big screen or big stage

Over the years, I would sing at church or in the choir at school, but it was nothing like the experience I had in 1993 when I sang with a live band for the first time.

I was very green, and if I am honest, I really did not know how to sing with a live band. I knew, however, I just had to get on that stage and try. I was living on my own, just down the street from Schooners Blues Bar, in Dallas, Tx. I walked down to the bar during the day, and it was dark and empty except for a few people. I was a bit nervous, but I wanted a job. Two gentlemen were sitting at the bar with a space between them, so I sat down. Little did I know it was Sam Myers and Joe Jonas (both local blues singers).

Sam and Joe

I said to the bartender, “Excuse me, are you hiring? I can work any shift, and I live right down the street?”

Sam, the gentleman to the left of me, said, “Put me on her resume.”

Joe quickly chimed in, “Me too.”

The man behind the bar, Jerry Weber, hired me on the spot. I was so happy. I’m not sure if my feet touched the ground as I skipped all the way home. I started working on a Monday night. It didn’t matter to me that it was an off night; I was just happy to have a job. The band was the Holland K Smith band. I didn’t know much about the blues genre. However, I knew that I absolutely had to get on that stage and sing.

I asked a bartender, “What blues song should I learn so I can join in on the jam?”

He said, “Tore Down.” So, “Tore Down” it was.

I learned the song and when I got my chance to sing it … Well, let me tell you … I was not prepared for the euphoric feeling. It was like I transcended to another planet. I was nervous, but I got up and sang that damn song. I felt the bass drum pounding against the back of my knees. The vibrations from the bass guitar ran from my feet to the top of my head. It was exhilarating. The melodic sounds of the lead guitar pierced my heart in such a way that I knew performing was exactly what I was supposed to be doing. That’s where I found my happy place. Dr. Phil couldn’t compare to the therapeutic feeling I got from singing my heart out.

After that experience, I was hooked. I dove in head-first and tried to learn everything I could about the Blues genre. I learned as many songs as I could, then started my own band.

Fast forward 27 years later, I have raised a child to adulthood, traveled near and far ― Big stages, little stages, it didn’t matter as long as I was singing. I have made a career performing with my husband, legendary bluesman, Andrew Jr.Boy Jones.

Kerrie and Jr. Boy Jones

All of it doesn’t seem that long ago. It’s funny how when you are doing something you love, that happens. Music has nurtured me and saved me over and over again. The blues saved my life. I will have to tell you about it at another time.

I am a full-time musician, and I’m certain that’s what I’ll always be, Lord willing and the creek don’t rise.

I am ready to get back to doing what I love, as soon as the world gets healthy, and the pandemic is over.

In the meantime, we are hitting on hard times, as are many of our fellow musicians. But we made a promise to ourselves and make it to you that we WILL keep the Blues alive and well! Also, Jr. Boy and I have a brand new album out Jr. Boy & Kerrie’s Blues.

It can be ordered direct through our website at: https://jonesbluesband.com/

I want to share a bit of our music with you and if you feel so inclined, I’ve listed our Virtual Tip Jars below the videos and would be most grateful for any donations during this Pandemic that has put all of the musicians out of work.

cash app: www.cash.app/$JonesBlues
Venmo: www.venmo.com/Kerrie-Jones-11
Zelle: abjentertainment@yahoo.com
Paypal: http://www.paypal.me/jonesbluesband

You can follow Kerrie & Jr. Boy on FACEBOOK!

Andrew Jr. Boy’s FACEBOOK

Kerrie Lepai Jones’ FACEBOOK

A NOTE TO MY FOLLOWERS! PLEASE SHARE ON FACEBOOK AS THIS MUSIC ARTIST DOES NOT HAVE TWITTER! THANK YOU FOR YOUR AWESOME SUPPORT!

Grinders – New Release from C.S. Boyack @virgilante

It is with excitement and great pleasure that I turn my blog site over to C.S. Boyack today so that he can tell you about his latest cyberpunk novel, Grinders!

Take it away, Craig!

Thanks for the invitation today, Jan. I’m honored to address your fans with my new book, Grinders. I’ve offered multiple topics on this tour, and I’m really excited that you chose The Grid.

Grinders is a cyberpunk story, set in San Francisco. This means an environment with a lot of neon, holographic advertising, and bustle. Computers and the Internet are a big part of these stories. That’s the “cyber” part. They also seem to have a seedy, almost underground, element to them. That’s the “punk” part. Now that you know what we’re dealing with, let’s talk about The Grid.

The Grid falls firmly under the cyber part of the environment, but it’s more than that. It’s almost a character in its own right, because it controls so much of the people’s lives.

At its core, The Grid is made up of hexagonal solar panels that have replaced all of the asphalt. It’s pebbled glass for traction. They fit together like Legos, and there is one scene with some repairs being made. So far, so good, right?

With all this electricity, this grid is hooked up to the Internet. We’re already seeing electric automobiles, and some self-driving technology, so I took the next step. All of the vehicles are paired with The Grid, and a central computer drives them all with incredible efficiency. Imagine four lanes (or more) buzzing along at 60-90 miles per hour. The cars are all about one foot from each other, and we would consider that tailgating today. The Grid is capable of moving them all at once, so this isn’t a problem.

Commuters simply tell an AI in the vehicle where they want to go, the AI communicates with The Grid, and they’re off to the races. Lane changes are accomplished with computer efficiency, by slowing down the adjacent cars to make a hole.

City streets have cross lane traffic to worry about. Stoplights are antiques in the world of Grinders. The Grid starts and stops traffic to keep all lanes moving at their best pace. When traffic stops, the lights have been replaced with holographic billboards that pipe advertising to the passengers.

Automobiles still dock for the night and recharge, but they also draw a small amount of power from The Grid. This is done via contact brushes, and The Grid will even pull over inefficient vehicles for a repair ticket if they cannot maintain the speeds required.

But like they say on late night television, but wait, there’s more. So far, I’ve only talked about ground level. In the world of Grinders, everything is delivered to small heli-pads at each residence and business. Drones provide staples and extras right to your apartment window. One of my main characters is fond of having liquor store deliveries made.

Some of these drones are huge, and include UPS trucks with larger loads. With all this lesser air traffic, how do they keep from crashing into each other? There has to be a way to set patterns and timing. This is yet another function of The Grid.

Imagine a moving van sized drone bringing your belongings to a new apartment. Not only does The Grid have to create a clear path to the building, it also needs to communicate with ground traffic to make a suitable parking space for landing.

The Grid is a wonderful creation. Pollution is all but gone from the Bay Area. Aggressive driving and accidents are a thing of the past. People even send their children to school in a car without adults. They can play games or read along the way. Businessmen can review files instead of drive and lean on the horn. Housewives even send the pets out for grooming without having to leave the house.

As an author, it’s fun to think ahead. A lot of this technology already exists. I hope someone smarter than me can make it happen one day. I like the idea of cheap solar power, efficient commuting, and the elimination of aggressive drivers from our streets. I’m still not on board with having someone else choose my produce, then deliver it to the house, but some of this is already being done too. They might not be using drones, but how far away is that technology anyway?

I hope you guys will give Grinders a chance. Thanks again to Jan for lending me her space. Now it’s time for me to drop a cover, blurb, and that all important purchase link.

Blurb:

Jimi Cabot made one mistake as a starving college student. When she went to work for the San Francisco Police Department, it nearly cost her the job. The union stepped in and they had to reinstate her. They did so by assigning her to the duty nobody wants, Grinder Squad.

Grinders are people who use back room surgeries to enhance their bodies with computer chips, and various kinds of hardware. Jimi is sure that if she can just bust one grind shop, it will be her ticket back.

Paired with veteran cop, she soon learns that Grinder Squad is a cash-cow for the department. They are nothing more than glorified patrol cops, and generally get the worst assignments.

Matchless is the most wanted grinder of all time. He disappeared years ago, leaving only the evidence of those he enhanced during his career. With these pieces, Jimi picks up the cold trail to try working her way back to more respectable duty.

Grinders is a cyberpunk story set in a world where global warming has eroded coastlines, and society has solved many of our current problems by replacing them with new ones. There are cyber shut-ins, cyber-currency skimming schemes, and more in this futuristic tale.

This book also takes the opportunity to poke a stick at current issues that seem to have lasted into the future. Entitled people, helicopter moms, overzealous homeowner associations, and lack of decent jobs are all present. Never preachy, these issues make up the day to day work of a patrol officer.

I hope you enjoy Grinders as much as I enjoyed bringing it to you.

Purchase link: http://mybook.to/Grinders

You can contact Craig at the following locations:

Blog My Novels  Twitter Goodreads Facebook Pinterest BookBub

#TarotTuesday – Five of Pentacles

Welcome to another Tarot Tuesday!

If you are just joining me, let me explain the inspiration to begin these posts. In Texas, and all across the country, Taco Tuesday is a popular day when Tacos are usually 99 cents. So, I had the inspiration, or Angel nudge as I like to think of it, to create a Tarot Tuesday. Each Tuesday I will post a different Tarot card and give its meaning. I pray and ask for the right card that will bring a universal message.

I created a short video to demonstrate how I pull the card for the posts. If you’re interested, here’s a LINK.

Last week we had an encouraging and uplifting card, but not so much this week. Today I drew the FIVE OF PENTACLES.

The keywords for this card are: Financial loss, poverty, lack mindset, isolation, and worry.

You have hit hard times, especially when it comes to your work, career, finances, and material possessions. You may have recently lost your job, your home, or your financial security. You no longer feel safe because it has all been stripped away from you in one blow. The upside is that this is a Minor Arcana card with temporary effects (rather than a Major Arcana card which has a longer-term impact). This, too, shall pass.

In this time of need, the Five of Pentacles indicates that you feel isolated and alone. Just like the two people in the card, you feel as if you have been left in the cold. You may wonder, “Why is no-one coming to help me!?” It may appear as if no one cares anymore. However, since the windows in the church are lit up, help is nearby; but you are too focused on your problems to notice. You may be waiting for someone to come and help you when really, you need to be proactive and ask for help. You need to swallow your pride or let go of your fear of rejection and reach out. People are here to support you. Find them and let them know you need them.

At times, the Five of Pentacles highlights a ‘lack mindset’. You are sabotaging your ability to create abundance because you only focus on what you lack. All you can see is what is going wrong. To shift this energy, look for evidence of what you do have, even if it’s very small or seemingly insignificant, and express your gratitude for those blessings in your life. Over time, the positive aspects will continue to grow and soon, ‘lack’ and ‘not having’ will be a thing of the past.

Similarly, the Five of Pentacles suggests that you fear you don’t have ‘enough’ or you may lose something important to you – even if it hasn’t happened yet or is unlikely. For example, you may live in fear that you will lose your job and will be left in the streets with no home and no support. If you stay focused on all the negative things that might happen, then be careful, because your manifesting powers may start to create the outcomes that you don’t want. Instead, redirect your attention to what you have now and what you want in the future, so your manifesting powers get used for good.

Wow! This card really hits home with the current global economic situation due to COVID-19. Things everywhere continue to grow increasingly gloomier. The part about it that I love is that it shows to be temporary and this too shall pass. Will life ever return to the way we knew it before? Who knows? I do know we must stay focused on the positive, give thanks for what we have, and be willing to help others. Tell me how this card affects you.

Thank you for joining me! See you next Tuesday for another inspiring message from the Universe via the Tarot Cards!

As always, I use the Rider-Waite Radiance deck and BiddyTarot.com for interpretations.

JONAH – #NewRelease for #SundaySpotlight!

My Sundays are normally set aside for music artists to spotlight their music and while I have several waiting in the wings, I wanted to showcase my latest new story, JONAH!

Jonah was a very different story for me to write. It is fantasy, and yet very much set in reality. I got the idea for the story during a guided meditation, through which I traveled to an uninhabited deadly island and my mission was to transform it into something beautiful.

Well, Jonah doesn’t exactly do that.

However, he is forced to take a good hard look at himself. He is told that there is only one way off the godforsaken island. “You must examine yourself, face your truths and make peace with your demons,” the note read.

Here’s a little backstory. Jonah lived on the streets in a large futuristic city. He’s made his way through brute strength and ruthlessness. Everyone who knew him feared the “Wrath of Jonah.” When he’s arrested and convicted of crimes, he is given a choice of punishment – either imprisonment beneath the ground, or exile to a deserted island. He chose the island.

There are dangerous mythical creatures on the island along with thick tangled brush filled with thorns, stinging nettles and poisonous flowers. It is not an easy place to survive. Jonah tried several times unsuccessfully to swim back to the mainland. He’s doomed to spend the rest of his life in this horrible place.

There are some other characters in the story, as it unfolds, and one of them is a young boy, Titus, who says he lives on the other side of the island where everything is lush and beautiful. But when Titus tries to take Jonah there, legions of green slimy snakes block the way. It is not allowed.

The lesson in this story is that Jonah must face the darkest parts of himself and make peace with the demons within. It is the hardest thing he’s ever tried to do.

Here is the BLURB:

Fantasy meets reality when a young man is forced to choose his punishment for crimes committed. Jonah must decide between imprisonment in a concrete box beneath the earth or be exiled to a deserted, barren island. He chooses the island, but nothing can prepare him for the deadly creatures, and poisonous plants at every turn. Then there’s the maddening isolation that drives him to the brink of insanity. There is only one way off this island and it’s more difficult than anything he’s ever imagined. It’s much easier to face mortal danger than the demons within. Will he find redemption, or another unexpected offer?

PURCHASE LINK:

I hope the story appeals to you enough that you pick it up. It carries a deep life lesson for us all, not just Jonah!

Sometimes we have to lose everything to find what we truly seek.

Welcome to Day 5 of the "NO PEDIGREE" Blog Tour! @NonnieJules #RRBC #RWISA @4WillsPub

It is with great pleasure that I turn my blog over to Nonnie Jules where she will tell you about her new book, “No Pedigree.” Nonnie is the founder of the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB and the RAVE WRITERS – INT’L SOCIETY OF AUTHORS.

Giveaways: (2) e-book copies of NO PEDIGREE, (2) $5 Amazon gift cards & (1) 3-Day Weekend blog tour! Total of 5 Winners!  To be entered into the drawing for either of these gifts, you must leave a comment below as well as a comment on the author’s 4WillsPub tour page.

Hi, and thanks for dropping in on Day 5 of my NO PEDIGREE blog tour!  I’d like to thank Jan who is so graciously allowing me her space today so that I can enlighten you a bit more on the troubles of Oklahoma, during 2014, the time period of which this tale was written. 

***

7 YEARS SHORT OF 100 AND NOT MUCH HAD CHANGED

Since NO PEDIGREE was set out of Piedmont, OK beginning in 2014, I thought I’d share some additional data on the area, which will shed a much brighter light on what Baylee had to suffer through – even in the 21st century.

There were 93 years resting between 1921 when the TULSA RACE MASSACRE occurred until 2014 when Baylee arrived in Piedmont.  Sadly, not much had changed. 

In 2015, there was controversy over a racist chant made by a white student at a University of Oklahoma fraternity, which brought attention back on the state’s race relations. 

Even today, reports show that blacks struggle in most of the quality-of-life factors in the state.  Oklahoma is first in the nation for blacks to die at the hands of police officers (this data from those states reporting).  Blacks are about half as likely to own a home, are more likely to go to prison, less likely to go to college and less likely to graduate.

Blacks in Oklahoma are more likely to be the victims of a crime or charged with a crime when compared to their white counterparts and other racial groups.

This atmosphere created a stressful dynamic where some in the black community worked hard to see better policing to keep their neighborhoods safe, but they also felt unfairly targeted by police, which bred mistrust.

Black students were faced with higher rates of school punishment along with higher juvenile arrest rates for violation of zero-tolerance policies.  This helped to create the so-called “school to prison pipeline” by pushing these students out of school.

Even as some states shifted to lighter punishments or legalization for marijuana possession, black Oklahomans were disproportionately charged with possessing the drug.

In 2014, minorities were underrepresented in Oklahoma’s two flagship universities:  The University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University.  Today, in 2020, this is still the case.  I know this as fact, because I have a child at one of these universities.

Both universities also struggle to retain, and graduate minority students compared with white students.

Oklahoma is rich with history – much of it hidden away.  I’m thankful that I had the opportunity to write NO PEDIGREE, giving me an even greater reason to dig deeper into Oklahoma’s background.  I’m honored to be able to share it with you.

Racism resides everywhere, not just in Oklahoma, but, so does strength, bravery and resilience.  It is up to us to decide which end of that spectrum we want to stand.  Racism is not born, it is bred … and the same goes for strength … it isn’t born – it is modeled.

**Resource:**  Oklahoma Watch News

***

BOOK BLURB…

Growing up on the wrong side of the tracks, Baylee never quite fit in… anywhere. She was taunted and teased because her clothes had no designer labels, and spit upon because her only pair of shoes had holes in the bottom. The butt of many jokes, she was excluded from all social activities, sneered at by the parents of her peers after school as she waited for the bus, watching them drive away in their fancy cars; assaulted in the most unthinkable fashion.

Having been born to a white father and a black native American mother didn’t make things any easier. In fact, that circumstance made her life ten times harder – until the day she made them all stand up, take notice, and regret every ugly word and deed they had inflicted upon her.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR…

Hi, I’m Nonnie JulesPresident & Founder of RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB {RRBC} and RAVE WRITERS – INT’L SOCIETY OF AUTHORS {RWISA}.  As a writer who values the (polished) written word, it is my mission to help my fellow authors understand that their reputations as writers should be treated as rare treasure, and that the only way to be taken seriously in this business, is to ensure that your writing (no matter the forum) is impeccably written and well edited.  If not, you’re just another “Joe” with a pen who was the first to raise his hand when Amazon asked, “Hey, any old Joe out there wanna publish a book?  Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be good and there’s absolutely no hard work involved.”

FYI:  If you don’t care what you put out into the world, you’re just a laughingstock in the literary community … and your name is “Joe.”

***

Connect with Nonnie via Twitter:  @nonniejules

To purchase your own copy of NO PEDIGREE, https://www.amazon.com/NO-PEDIGREE-Really-Short-Story-ebook/dp/B083SB1RMN/

To learn more about Nonnie and other ways to connect with her, please drop in on her RRBC Author Page!

To follow along with the rest of the NO PEDIGREE blog tour, visit the author’s tour page.

If you’d like to schedule your own 4WillsPub tour to promote your books in similar fashion, click HERE.

#TarotTuesday – Queen of Cups

Welcome to another Tarot Tuesday!

If you are just joining me, let me explain the inspiration to begin these posts. In Texas, and all across the country, Taco Tuesday is a popular day when Tacos are usually 99 cents. So, I had the inspiration, or Angel nudge as I like to think of it, to create a Tarot Tuesday. Each Tuesday I will post a different Tarot card and give its meaning. I pray and ask for the right card that will bring a universal message.

I created a short video to demonstrate how I pull the card for the posts. If you’re interested, here’s a LINK.

I have to admit that I was shocked to pull such a positive card in the midst of global chaos, but today’s card is the QUEEN OF CUPS.

The keywords for this card are: Compassionate, caring, emotionally stable, intuitive, and in flow.

The Queen of Cups is nurturing, caring, compassionate and sensitive. When you see her in a Tarot reading, it encourages you to embody her ‘nurturing mother’ energy. You support others by listening with your heart, being compassionate, and caring for them deeply.

The Queen of Cups says you are highly intuitive, creative, and in the flow of the surrounding energies. In your interactions with others, you can easily read other people to get a sense of how to communicate effectively, enabling you both to feel heard and understood. Others may come to you to confide their personal issues regarding relationships, emotions and feelings. They trust you and know that you always have the right solution. You can instantly tune in to what others are going through and can help them make sense of it. You may be a healer, counselor or intuitive coach; or maybe just a good friend. You recognize the Divine in everyone you meet.

In your creative projects and endeavors, you ‘feel’ your way into them, trusting your heart and your inner guidance to lead you in the right direction. You know when something is ‘off’, and you pay attention to this, even if it doesn’t make rational sense. You may be in tune with the cycles of the moon and nature, using these cycles to manifest your goals and live your dreams.

When the Queen of Cups appears in a Tarot reading, you are being asked to trust your intuition and pay attention to your feelings and emotions. Lead with your heart, not your head. Be open to receive the intuitive messages flowing to you, be it through your dreams, meditation or visualization. And ‘feel the feels’, even if those feelings are tricky or challenging. You are stronger than you know.

I love this card and it brings such a wonderful message to trust our intuitions. I also love that it particularly addressed creative projects and encourages us to trust our hearts to leave in the right direction. And, I think it can easily be said that we are all stronger than we know. How about you? Does this card touch your life in any way?

Thank you for joining me! See you next Tuesday for another inspiring message from the Universe via the Tarot Cards!

As always, I use the Rider-Waite Radiance deck and BiddyTarot.com for interpretations.

How about a Micro Read?

Nonnie Jules, founder of the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB has added a new category to the #RRBC catalog – Micro Reads.

Here is her definition:

-A micro read is a story, shorter than a short story (standard:  up to 7500 words) but longer than a blog post (standard:  around 300 – 600 words);
-Its word count ranges from 1200 to 3000 words;
-It’s a story that feels so good to you, you could put it on your blog as a post, but you want its reach to go farther than your blog, therefore, it is publishable;
-A micro read can include one story or up to three stories, and they don’t have to all fall under the same genre.  (If you’re a multi-genre writer, this is a great way to introduce all areas of your talent in one quick read);
-A micro read can be read in the span of 5 – 10 minutes;
-A micro read is only in e-book format;
-A micro read should be priced no lower and no higher than $.99 cents.

SO, thanks to Nonnie’s new idea, I give to you my first published Micro Read!

BLURB:

A wild black stallion has cautiously watched a beautiful white mare, from the safety of the forest for many years. He longs to be with her, and ventures close to the barn nightly to communicate with her. They share their deepest desires and secrets. Now it is winter, and the rest of the wild herd has moved on, but the stallion stays. He cannot stand the thought of being so far away from her. The scent of sweet alfalfa hay and enticing lure of the white mare is too much for him. He must find a way to be with her. But will it be worth the risk? Satin and Cinders is a story of courage and determination. 

If you have ten minutes and want to check out my new story, it’s available on AMAZON for only 99 cents!

PURCHASE LINK

And if you’d like to check out other Micro Reads in the #RRBC Catalog, here is the link: https://ravereviewsbookclub.wordpress.com/looking-for-micro-reads-ck-out-the-rrbc-catalog-today-rrbc_community/

Welcome to Day 6 of the #RRBC “SPOTLIGHT” Author Blog Tour for @BalroopShado #RRBCSA #RRBC_Community

Today, I am happy to showcase an amazing member of the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB, Balroop Singh!

Understanding Poetry

I don’t remember when I started liking poetry. Probably I was born with it or was fascinated by the lyrics of Mother Nature.

When I walk down my memory lane, one image looms large and that is how much effort one of our English professors put into explaining the poetry of Tennyson and Wordsworth. While the latter was relatively easier to understand, the former much more complex and obviously we didn’t like the one who was more challenging.

Real challenges came my way when ‘Paradise Lost,’ an epic poem by John Milton was not taught in the class (or if it was, I must be mentally absent) and even when it was discussed, it didn’t evoke any interest!

While prose can be an effortless reading unless it is stream of consciousness writing, poetry can become quite boring if we are not familiar with its techniques and tones. Despite the tests and trails, I continued to like poetry and slowly discovered that it is a genre par excellence. It can say a lot through literary techniques, which only an admirer of Literature can understand. I still struggle to understand some subtle messages conveyed through poetry.

My mind hurtles back once again; my interactions with teenagers get refreshed, all their expressions, yawns and glances stand before me, bringing those lovely memories of hate-love relationship we had with poetry; when we would try to convince each other why poetry is good or bad and how we could understand it better.

I am not an expert but I have figured out a few ways to understand poetry:

All readers have their own approach and interpretation but how imagery is used defines a poem. Can you read between those special words to fathom their depth?

It is better to read slowly. Stop and ponder over at the word that seems simple but abstruse.

Be curious. Inquisitiveness and interest are two important elements that lead to our understanding of a poem.

Poetry can’t be scanned and understood like prose as the former demands concentration, attention and gentle reading.

If you read a poem in a hurry, you would miss the real meaning. Many times words are used as metaphors.

You have to be familiar with most common literary techniques like simile, metaphor, hyperbole, personification, alliteration and assonance.

Imaginative flights of poets can’t be predicted, we have to fly with them to figure out their proficiencies.

Critical analysis of a poem reveals the nuances of its theme, undertones and other signals, which remain hidden to a scanner.

Some poems are ambiguous. Probably they relate to the poet’s past or buried memory, which he wouldn’t like to reveal but gives a vent to his emotions through writing.

Ambiguous ideas in a poem provide a food for thought and chisel your creative skills.

Who has the time and the inclination to read and re-read a poem in this fast-paced world? Only poetry lovers do!

MOMENTS WE LOVE

Thank you so much for dropping by to support Balroop!  We hope that you will take your support even further by picking up a copy of her book.  We ask that you also please ‘LIKE’  this page, leave a comment and share it on social media before leaving.  To follow along with the rest of her tour, please drop by the RRBC “SPOTLIGHT” Author forum.
Would you like this kind of support?  Join Us at RRBC!

#TarotTuesday – Page of Swords

Welcome to another Tarot Tuesday!

If you are just joining me, let me explain the inspiration to begin these posts. In Texas, and all across the country, Taco Tuesday is a popular day when Tacos are usually 99 cents. So, I had the inspiration, or Angel nudge as I like to think of it, to create a Tarot Tuesday. Each Tuesday I will post a different Tarot card and give its meaning. I pray and ask for the right card that will bring a universal message.

I created a short video to demonstrate how I pull the card for the posts. If you’re interested, here’s a LINK.

Today’s card is the PAGE OF SWORDS!

I love this card! It is so light and airy – just what we need about now!

The keywords associated with the Page of Swords are: New ideas, curiosity, thirst for knowledge, and new ways of communicating.

The Page of Swords is full of energy, passion and enthusiasm. When this card shows up, you are bursting with new ideas and plans for the future. You may be excited about starting a new project, or learning something new. You have so much energy that you feel as though you could do almost anything – and you can! The challenge, however, is whether you can keep it up. As with all Pages, the beginning always looks promising, but you need something else to follow through and keep up the pace.

The Page of Swords often emerges when you are exploring a new way of thinking – a new idea, a new perspective, new knowledge, or a new technique.

As the Swords relate to communication, the Page of Swords suggests that you are exploring a different way of expressing yourself with others and communicating your ideas and opinions. You may be drawn to public speaking, writing a book or a blog, starting a podcast, or being more vocal on social media. You are a natural communicator and ready to take the next step to share your message with the world. Again, this is the exploratory phase, so be open to new ways of expressing yourself and discovering where your inner talents lie.

If you are looking for a sign to move ahead with a new project, the Page of Swords says, ‘Go for it!’ There will always be challenges with whatever way you choose, and not everyone will be thrilled with your choices, but when it comes down to it, you need to follow your passions and go where your true energy lies. This Page encourages you to move forward and to get the wheels in motion, despite any challenges or setbacks that might stand in the way.

Also, the Page of Swords can represent your relationship with a person who is exploring their ability to communicate, share ideas, and gather information. You may have your moments with this Page, as the Swords often express a level of tension or conflict, and this bundle of energy may sometimes prove too much to handle. If you need to, give yourself a break from this person, and return with fresh eyes. They have a lot to share with you, and despite their inexperience, may teach you something about yourself. You need to stay open to their enthusiasm to learn more about the world.

There you go! As I said earlier, I got excited when I saw this card. I have started two new projects. One is here on my blog and the other is a new story! Both are super energetic and fun! Starting this Sunday, I will be opening my blog up to music artists to share their stories, their work and their thoughts. The first one scheduled is Country Music Hall of Fame Drummer, Mark Herndon of the supergroup, Alabama! So, don’t miss that. The story project I’ve started is called “Brother’s Keeper,” and the main character is Quentin Marks (aka Shadow). This is a very different type of story and I’m up for the challenge! Okay. How does this card speak to you? What new projects, ways of communicating or ideas are you brimming with?

Thank you for joining me! See you next Tuesday for another inspiring message from the Universe via the Tarot Cards!

As always, I use the Rider-Waite Radiance deck and BiddyTarot.com for interpretations.

Sunday Spotlight – Mark Herndon

Welcome to the first post in my new series, Sunday Spotlight, featuring music artists!

One of the greatest joys in my life is supporting fellow artists. And, I know from experience that often singer/songwriters/musicians don’t have the time or energy to create a blog. Therefore, I have opened my blog to guest posts from music artists for a Sunday Spotlight.

Today, I’m thrilled to welcome Mark Herndon, drummer with the supergroup, Alabama!

Mark has lots to share AND he has a brand new book release.

Welcome, Mark!

Thank you, Jan, for giving me a platform to talk about my work. I am super happy about my new book release, The High Road – Memories From a Long Trip.

PURCHASE LINK

As the book cover says, these are memories from a long trip. I played drums for the group, Alabama for almost thirty years. But that was a second career for me. I also dreamed of being a pilot. I’m one of those lucky guys that got to have both of my dreams come true.

One of the main things that inspired me to write this book was my father. I was always very curious about things that he did in his life, but he played his cards very close to his chest and didn’t share much. He was a military man and he was trained to do that plus people of that generation didn’t talk too much about themselves. I was never able to coax him to share his stories with me. So, I looked around one day and realized that I had a collection of stories from my own life, which was a little bit on the unusual side, compared to the average folks.

When my daughter became an adult, I started thinking that history was repeating itself like it did with me and my dad, and that maybe someday she’d want to share my stories with her kids. That was when I got serious about telling them. I started typing that first story, and by the time I was two or three paragraphs into it, I realized I was entertaining myself. Also, I want to say that I didn’t start my book at the beginning of the story. I jump into the middle around 1985 or 1986.

There’s a lot in the book that you have to read between the lines because either I had to write it that way, or wanted to write it that way. This is not a “tell all.” It’s a “tell almost.” And I have to thank my wife for that. We originally hired a Hollywood show business type publicity firm that put an enormous amount of pressure on me to write more dirt, because dirt sells. But, my wife was adamant about not doing that. She knew I wasn’t that kind of person, and it was important to stay true to myself. I’m glad I did!

As I said earlier, I am just one of those lucky guys that got to do what I wanted to in life. Of course, I had to do the work. I had to study and I had to learn, but I have managed to enjoy two completely different careers.

Country Music Hall of Fame Drummer, Mark Herndon
Pilot, Mark Herndon

Book Blurb:

  • What drives a man to spend 26 years performing night after night?
  • How can he persevere through a stifling tour bus, bad food, strange women, flared tempers, a plane nearly blown from the sky?
  • Just how did that troubled military brat with a dream claw his way from dirt-floor dive-bar shows to the world’s biggest stages?

Aviator, author, and Country Music Hall of Fame drummer Mark Herndon lived that dream with one of the most popular and celebrated bands of all time. He learned some hard lessons about people and life, the music industry, the accolades and awards, how easy it is to lose it all . . . and how hard it is to survive, to embrace sobriety, to live even one more day.

Herndon’s poignant memoir offers a tale at once cautionary and inspirational, delightful and heartbreaking, funny yet deeply personal. From innocence to rebellion to acceptance, can a man still flourish when the spotlight dims? Are true forgiveness, redemption, and serenity even possible when the powerful say everything you achieved somehow doesn’t even count? That you’re not who you and everyone who matters thought you were?

Mark Herndon refuses to slow down. So look back, look ahead, and join him on the trip.

He’s taking The High Road.

Author Blurb:

Legendary Country Music Hall of Fame drummer Mark Herndon yearned to fly jets as a military brat, then discovered the dream of playing drums, vowing to come back one day and perform at the very place where he once had to stand outside just to hear. Along the way, he loved and lost and made plenty of mistakes, persevering to achieve all that he imagined before having so much taken away. After decades with one of the most celebrated bands of all time, he still lives his dreams, playing, producing, flying, and now writing with keen observations about life and living in the spotlight.

And now, Mark is managing, and playing drums for his beautiful wife, Leah Seawright in her band. So, the road goes on and Mark is looking ahead! They have new music coming, and I will happily showcase it here once the record is released!

Thank you, Mark for gracing my blog site and I wish you and Leah well with all your endeavors!

Follow Mark and Leah:

Mark’s Facebook

Mark’s Website

Leah’s Website

Leah’s Facebook

PLEASE NOTE! When you purchase “The High Road” from Mark’s website, you will receive an autographed copy! https://www.markherndon.com/