This month I want to share with you an interesting article I read in the January/February issue of the science magazine Discover. Every month, the magazine publishes interesting stories about the latest breakthroughs and discoveries in science.
Beside a life-long interest in art and music, I’ve also mentioned that archaeology, physics, and many disciplines of the science field have fascinated me, as well. You could call me a generalist, a “jack of all trades,” or, my favorite, a Renaissance woman! (more…)
I grew up in Southern California, so I’m familiar with the missions established by Father Junípero Serra and other missionaries along what is known as El Camino Real (The Royal Road), named to honor the Spanish Monarchy. “El Camino Real” is a road sign seen quite often near Highway 101, across the north county of San Diego!
There are several other historic missions located in and around San Diego and I’ve visited quite a few of them, but today I’m focusing on the 21 main missions built along the famous route that are a part of California’s heritage. (more…)
I’m reposting this interview author Clancy Tucker conducted with me here on the blog, so you can read all of the fun questions and answers! I hope you enjoy. If you have any other questions for me, please post them in the comments section and I’ll do my best to answer! (more…)
I’m going to try something different! I have been talking with you every week for about six months, and I hope you enjoyed the topics I shared with you.
Starting with the next phase of posting, I will focus more deeply on topics relating to subjects I find interesting, like action and adventure, archaeology, archaeological action and adventure, expeditions and discoveries, explorers, ghosts, magic, time travel, the supernatural and paranormal, myths and legends, fiction and non-fiction authors’ books, TV shows and movies relating to the topic of the month. You get the idea!
My blogs will be more in-depth, longer, and (more…)
I have a wonderful new book to share with you. It’s called The Tenth Island, written by Pulitzer Prize winner Diana Marcum. It is well written, funny, poignant, and thought provoking – in a good way!
Diana tells of her own personal journey, beginning at a difficult time when she’s at a crossroads in her life. A freelance newspaper journalist, she has no money, no steady job, but a longing to visit and write about the Azores, a group of small islands in the middle of the Atlantic. She has no family, no tribe, of her own, but she has connections with many Azoreans who have settled in California’s Central Valley, and she tells us some of their stories, as well.
When she takes the leap to visit Terceira, she is taken in and accepted by an Armenian family. They and their friends become her tribe, as she gets to know them, and shares their stories with us. We are given an insider’s view into a small and private world, with descriptions of the volcanic island and its traditions, from men standing in a line to let an enraged bull charge them head-on, to the hardships of forcing girls to marry against their wishes.
The islands of the Azores belong to Portugal, but the islanders are fiercely independent, and share strong bonds with emigrants who left their island homes to settle in America and Canada. Many of those who emigrated to other countries, return every year to celebrate their ties with family and their island. We are privy to many celebrations and given a glimpse into another, very different and interesting culture.
There is joy at new relationships, sadness for things lost and what might have been; and yes, a love story too. The Tenth Island drew me in with well-defined characters; so interesting and believable they made me want to know them. I loved the descriptions of the many, many festas and another Azorean-style bullfight with bulls on the loose running through crowded streets. I could almost feel what is was like, sitting on the wall in front of a friend’s house, watching the bull charge past.
Her stories about the undependable, big, purple, American car called “Barney” and her unruly Labrador “Murphy” were funny and made for enjoyable reading. The longing for home felt by those who left, is heart-felt. Their untranslatable Portuguese word for that feeling is saudade (pronounced sau-da-je). As her friend Chef said, The Tenth Island for the Azoreans is the home you always carry with you, no matter where you live.
The Tenth Island was so good, I read it in little bits to make the stories last, and I was sorry to see the stories end.
I thoroughly enjoyed Diana Marcum’s story about her adventures on Terceira. I think you will, too.
Usually, I try to include a picture reflecting each week’s blog, but I saw this carefree photo and it made me happy, so I’m sharing it.
I was thinking about a good topic to talk about with you this week, and I ran across some “sayings” that I thought were funny, or clever, or inspirational when I found them. I thought I’d share a few of them with you, and if any of them strike you as interesting or thought-provoking, send me a comment and tell me what you think.
Here’s the first one: I always thought the name “Bluetooth” was unusual, and I wondered how (more…)
It’s time for us to get together again! This week I’d like to talk about writer’s block and what happens to make our minds go as blank as the white page in front of us. Plus, I present a possible writer’s block cure!
Now, for me, so far, that hasn’t been a problem. I am blessed with a vivid imagination and lots of stories I want to tell. But what happens when that well of stories dries up? Take these blogs, for instance. Every week, I must find (more…)
I appreciate all the kind remarks and comments I’ve received over the past few months since the launch of my weekly blog. Thank you all, very much.
I’ve been doing all the talking lately, so this week—and into the future if you feel the notion—I would love to hear more from you. Tell me what you think about hummingbirds being so trusting when they are trapped that they’ll let a person hold them and carry them to safety. Do you have any stories about wild birds or animals who trusted you? Tame ones, too.
What about people who inspired you? I had people in my life who encouraged me, made me believe I could, when I thought I probably couldn’t. Do you, or did you, have a friend, a teacher, a mentor, anyone to show you the way, so you wouldn’t have to carve a new path on your own? Those people are blessings in our life we might not even recognize or appreciate at the time. If they are still available to you, now might be a good time to thank them. I mean this sincerely, don’t wait until it’s too late. I have learned never to let words of appreciation go unsaid.
Speaking of teamwork, have you learned it’s better to cooperate with others of like mind rather than struggle alone to re-invent the wheel? That one takes some doing if you like to work on your own, but trust me, brainstorming opened new avenues of possibilities I couldn’t imagine before. Plus, you get the added bonus of friendships. I would love to hear how you accomplished something greater by working in partnership with someone else.
Do you have a favorite story or legend that captured your imagination? I loved the stories of Merlin and King Arthur when I was growing up. How about you?
Last month, I wrote about my favorite pet names. I forgot that it was two generations ago (yikes!) that I saw the movie A Streetcar Named Desire. It’s the one where Marlon Brando yelled “Stella!” I thought it was a pretty good name for calling a dog to come back to me, but I realized that many of you probably never heard of the author, Tennessee Williams, or the 1950s movie. Time does fly!
So, these are my thoughts for this week’s posting. I hope you enjoyed spending this time with me, and I would very much like to hear what you have to say.
As a Special Giveaway to you for sharing your views and your interests, I would like to offer the following:
Add your comments and input below, and I will be happy to email the first two chapters of my first book, A Shadow Away, to you for free. Plus, I offer you early access to purchase the 6 books of my series “Alex Cort Action Adventures” before they’re available to the public! Once you add your comment, you will hear from me shortly with your freebie!
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Hello again. I hope you had a fantastic Labor Day Weekend Holiday!
I included a video this week where I talk about my life in metaphysics, and why I like to write about the supernatural.
If you’ve read A Shadow Away, my mission statement, or my weekly blogs, you will notice I have a very positive outlook on life. Things happen to us, of course, but if we dig deeply enough into the underlying causes of most accidents, coincidences, or unhappy events — happy ones, too — an explanation will usually present itself.
“They” say, “Nothing happens in life without a reason.” I’ve also been told, and found out for myself, that “Every problem that comes to you, comes with a gift in its hands.” Which means, we always learn something from what life hands us. I believe it was Richard Bach, in his book Jonathan Livingston Seagull, who wrote this piece of wisdom. I’ve turned to that thought often in my life.
I don’t pretend to have all the answers, but I was brought up with a metaphysical outlook on life, and it gives me a great deal of comfort to know that things usually turn out for the good, or how they were meant to be, even though it doesn’t look that way to me at the time.
Our world is experiencing a great deal of tumult on many levels in this new Age of Aquarius. We no longer live in the safe world I knew growing up, and I don’t envy young people the problems they are facing today. But the interesting thing is that the young people of today give me a great deal of encouragement. They are stronger, smarter, more gifted than the kids I knew growing up. We had different problems to deal with, and we handled them the best way we could. Kids today seem ready to face their challenges and rise to them with intelligence and grace. I do believe what was said about the idea that we are not given more to bear than we can handle.
There are exceptions to that idea, of course. But even perceived failures or losses can, with some introspection, become learning experiences for us.
Anyway, that’s why I like to write about other dimensions, science, and magic, and the supernatural, because I want to share the idea that there is no end to life. Forms change, but life goes on. Science is even proving that energy and matter are the same thing at the quantum level. Nothing is lost. That gives me comfort when I think of loved ones who have moved on.
I like to write positive stories that take you, and me too, on adventures with exciting action, a touch of magic, and a bit of romance as adventurer Alex Cort joins eccentric archaeologist Andrew Seaton and Angel, a young woman with her own kind of magic.
Join me on adventures to explore lost cities of legends like El Dorado and Atlantis. It’s a lot of fun!
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This week I’ve been thinking about fascinating logos. They are everywhere around us, and some are so recognizable we don’t even need to read the company name to know exactly who they are.
My all-time favorite has got to be the opening scene of almost any Disney movie. The one with Sleeping Beauty’s castle — with a cascade of stars streaming overhead in a magical arc at a touch of Tinkerbell’s wand. When I see that image, I know I’m going to be going on a magical adventure.
I also love the Disney scene with an old-fashioned steam engine train chugging through a mystical countryside where sometimes I wish I could live. Speaking of fantasy places I wish I could live, I often get that feeling when I see Thomas Kincade’s paintings of a house or cottage nestled by a stream with the windows ablaze with that special light he creates. But I digress!
Another of my favorite logos is the NBC peacock. I’ve watched it morph from a simply drawn colorful image in the beginning, many years ago, to more evolved and updated images through the years. But we always know that peacock means NBC.
I appreciate graphic artists and designers who can take the initials of a company’s name and make a clever logo out of them. I admire their imagination and creativity!
The San Diego Zoo publishes a magazine called ZOONOOZ. I like it because I love the zoo, but also because the name reads the same from front to back. A word like that is called a Palindrome. Radar, toot, and refer, are other palindromes. How many can you think of?
I’m also a fan of words with double meanings. The Alazo Press logo has a double meaning that I appreciate very much. The word “alazo” occurs in two different languages, and I find that fascinating. I first discovered alazo, in Greek, means “to change.” Like changing your life for the better. The second alazo is Spanish, and it means “a stroke of the wing,” like a bird in flight. Alazo Press’s logo is a hummingbird. How interesting is that!
How many creative and interesting logos have you noticed? It’s kind of like cars on the freeway, once you start noticing one you’ll see it everywhere. When you find some that appeal to you, let me know. I’d love to hear from you!
As always, you can reach me at email@example.com or visit my website at www.joanklacy.com to learn about all six stories of my “Alex Cort Action Adventures” series. Starting with A Shadow Away, each book is an action adventure connected with a myth or legend, with a touch of magic, and a bit of romance.