Be Unique

ImageBe unique no matter the risk. Embrace who you are and rejoice in your existence. This world would not be what it is without you. Every one of us touches the lives around us. We can lift a person from deep despair or throw them to the darkest of pits with the simplest of words or actions. Such power we have as living beings.

This is a real deer in this picture. She lives near our home. I saw her more recently with the same brown deer as before, but also with a small deer with the same coloring on her back end. I suspect the brown one is the mother of both. But the unique bigger sister can change the world of her unique baby sibling. They both will have a tougher life. Will their lives be at risk for being what they are? Staying together will give the younger deer another being similar, but different. They can look after each other as all unique beings can.

Anything could happen, but there she is, wandering through my yard, past my goats and dogs. My llamas just didn’t know what to think. To me she is beautiful. To me all lives are so very different and special.

We have all felt alone, dejected, so different we didn’t know how to take another step. But we did. We still do take more steps every day. We make full hikes past the point where we didn’t know where to go. Something kept us going. Something gave us direction. Something led us to be ourselves.

What inspires you to be yourself? Or who? Your unique and I would love to hear what makes you that way.

Our mutual love of books

I have loved reading books since I was very young. My first book was called Wings on Things. I dragged it everywhere, highlighting the words I had trouble with so I could ask my parents later. The cold of fall makes me think of all the books I want to read. There are so many that I could never read them all in my lifetime. By next year, no matter how many I read this year, the impossible list will be even longer. So I pick what fits into my life right now, escape for a few hours or days then go about my life richer for the experience of delving into another world.

I am a chronic re-reader. I reread my favorites when life is too busy to take on a new set of characters, plot and world. Rereading lets me relive the ups and downs, the fears and joys of my favorite characters.

Books changed our world and continue to. Even a fictional novel can change the way we think, the way we want to act or even leading us to insights into our selves and our world that never before occurred to us. Why else have books been denied to people at times in the past. Books change the world.

Books have changed my world. I can’t imagine life without them. The e-book was a lifesaver. Due to a condition in my shoulders that pinches the nerves it was getting harder and harder for me to hold a paper book, especially my beloved hardbacks. I spent years hardly reading a thing since just rereading a favorite left me with sleeping hands in constant pain. Those were hard years. Then came the e-book! My world changed. I read and read and read. No matter how bad my hands were I could stare at my laptop screen and just push the arrow once in awhile. I could prop up the iPad and just swish my finger to see the page flip as if it were paper. Oh how I was entertained by that. I sometimes would flip the page back and forth just to see the turning-page affect. “See,” I would say to myself, “You can enjoy digital and not miss paper!” Additionally I could afford to buy several books a month for less than the price of a meal at a fast food restaurant. It takes far less time to save up for a higher priced book as well. All these elements meant I could read again. And I do!

I never thought of it until this week. I guess I’m a bibliophile. I love to read. I love books, be they paper or pixels on a screen.

What are your favorite books? How have books changed your life? I would love to hear. All stories, true or fiction feed my soul.

Looking for first readers.

What is a First Reader you ask?

As a first reader you get to read my books first. You get to tell me what you like and don’t like. You get to help me make my book into a publishable manuscript. You also get to tell me that the whole things stinks if that is how you feel . “Yuck” is a regular note one of my editors sends me so yuck away and also Ooo and ahhhh away! Every yuck gets edited into an ooooo because of your advice!

I need a dozen first readers for my book The GearMaker’s Locket. You get my story in three pieces. Ten chapters are ready. You just make notes and send it back to me. I then get you the next third of the book.

The benefit other than having permission to say Yuck to someone?

You get bragging rights!  You were the first one to read my book. Up to the challenge? I will also send you a copy of the published version of my books when they come out!

One thing I have learned from all these authors I have seen lately is that first readers are a must! The book has been professionally edited, revised multiple times and is ready for the final once through. Does anyone have some spare reading time on their hands? I’ve got the first ten chapters of the book right here ready to go. The next third of the book will be ready in about a month or so and the final third a month or so after that.

Email me and let me know that you are interested.

Have a wonderful week!

Shannon L Reagan

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Mowquin

Mowquin

I would like you to meet my friend Mowquin of the Fae.

He lives in the lush swamps of the Other Realm. Throughout the ages he taught young fae about magic and encouraged respect of all life; fae or human. Soft spoken, yet strong, Mowquin towers over most beings at about 7 feet tall. You are unlikely to notice him despite his size because of his command of the fae arts, but he often doesn’t leave his home because of his inability to blend into the human realm like so many other fae. It is possible he wore a broad rimmed hat while crossing the Puget Sound on a ferry last year. Many people looked twice, but thought they might be in the presence of a basketball star trying to go incognito.

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Very few humans know about Mowquin, but it’s my wish that someday he gets his moment in the spotlight.

Pumpkin!

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The thing about plants is we take for granted that they will grow fine. This poor pumpkin! It was under part of the plant so I unearthed it. It grew a bit more and hardened up. It is still sitting here attached to the plant. It has some time to get bigger than a deformed tennis ball if the weather cooperates. I guess we’ll see!

It makes me think about perseverance. We all have to develop that trait. There are many times we sink low and give up, but after a few minutes of misery we pull ourselves back up, we keep growing. Whatever you’re going through right now, you can persevere through. Just persevering will mean that you have succeeded no matter what the outcome. In that part of your life you won… like a little pumpkin that had so much against it.

Thunder

A good storm gets my soul moving. I feel energized and ready to create a whole universe overnight. The flashes across the sky, the deep throated roll shaking the land… Is there anything else quite like it?

The Northwest just experienced a week of this kind of weather. The sky would light up, a rumble would sound then a patter of drops would descend with a crescendo of sound to a downpour of fat raindrops soaking the land. The heady petrichor of earth drinking in the summer rain would fill the air. We sometimes get this weather, but to have bits of it for a whole week was unusual. It resulted in a humidity level we are certainly not used to and fireworks that outdo the Space Needle on the 4th of July.

When I did my college internship at a summer stock theatre in New England I got to experience these invigorating storms on a regular basis. I returned to the theatre for two additional summers because of how glorious everything was in New England. The storms would come off the ocean (which, incidentally they keep on the wrong side… according to this West Coast girl’s sense of direction.) The dark line would travel across the sky towards the beach-side stomping grounds of the theatre workers. Theatres, especially one as old as The Hampton Playhouse was, have an electric energy all their own, but then a storm would roll in. The Hampton Playhouse was very old and very deep with the magic of years of performances. I have felt no magic so extreme since.

Our dog, incidentally named Raine, has a very different opinion about thunder and lightning. She goes frantic. Bouncing, bouncing… bark, bark, bark. A bit of a yip and whining. She wants to protect us from the big bad BOOM that she can’t find the source of. Needless to say, the 4th of July has the same effect.

Raine was born on a stormy August night about 8 years ago. Her brothers’ names were Thunder, Thor and Monsoon. Fun bouncy papillions dancing in the storm.

Invigorating bolts tossed down from the sky. Electrical inspiration seared into our vision. The heartbeat of the sky… of the earth.