Wisdom of Kammbia 3.31: The Descendant of Destiny by Marion Hill

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Here’s the cover to my upcoming novel, The Descendant of Destiny.  

I have been working my novel for the past several months and not blogging as frequently.  I’m planning for a March 2014 release of my novel.  Here’s a brief overview of the story:

The Descendant of Destiny is a Christian Contemporary Fantasy Novel and the first book of the United Kammbia Trilogy.

My novel tells the story of Diondray Azur, who has been chosen to go to Santa Sophia, a city in the fictional world of Kammbia.

However, Diondray is a member of the Azur Family of Charlesville. The Azur Family is the ruling family of Charlesville and they would never allow him to go to Santa Sophia.

The world of Kammbia is divided into two regions: Northern and Southern. Santa Sophia is the major city of Northern Kammbia and Charlesville is the major city of Southern Kammbia. The Kammbian Forest separates the two regions. The citizens of Northern and Southern Kammbia do not interact with each other.

However, there is a prophecy revealed in the Book of Kammbi that ties the two regions together in the past.  The Book of Kammbi is the sacred book for the people of Northern Kammbia. Diondray Azur will become the person that is the fulfillment of this prophecy and unite the two regions into one.

More to come.

What do you think of the cover?

Wisdom of Kammbia 3.30: The Importance of the Writer-Reader Relationship

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I believe this quote should make writers realize the importance of the writer-reader relationship and that we don’t disrespect that connection.

“What disrespect we writers have for the people who read our work. Our readers don’t expect perfection every time we publish a book. They expect a good read, something to take them from their lives for a few hours. They hope to get a memorable read, but escape will do. They’ll even settle for a bad read now and then, if you’ve already provided them with hours and hours of pleasure before.”

{Kristine Kathryn Rusch}

Wisdom of Kammbia 3.28: 25 Things A Dad Should Teach His Son

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I just saw this list today and I thought it would be good to share.  These twenty-five things are not the final word on what a father should teach his son.  If there are others I’ve missed, please reply and add them to the list.

Also, if you as father (like myself) not have done all of these things with your son or sons….this will be a good guideline to keep in mind and some things to try with your son or sons in the future.  This list is not an indictment on fatherhood but an encouragement for fathers.  And sometimes men….we do need encouragement as well.

Here’s the list:

1) Speak in public—there’s power in the spoken word

2) Read good books-leaders are readers (Both fiction and non-fiction.  We have to stop this belief that reading fiction is only for women.  Sorry, that’s not true.)

3) Play an instrument-especially because of this discipline required

4) Play individual, two-person and team sports

5) Build a fire

6) Camp out-pitch the tent, cook stuff over the fire, the whole thing

7) Carve a turkey

8) Light a grill 

9) Jump start a car

10) Tie a knot-such as a bowline, square knot, taut-line, and figure eight among others

11) Use basic tools—hammer, saw, wrench, screwdriver

12) Paint a room-trim and all

13) Handle a gun and a knife—for safety, protection, sport, and hunting

14) Skin an animal

15) Be a gentleman–open doors, stand when a woman approaches at dinner, etc. (Don’t let political correctness stop us from doing this.  Chivalry is still okay in the 21st century.)

16) Grow stuff–and not just a Chia pet

17) Iron a shirt–and do laundry and other work around the house in a manly way

18) Manage money–keep a balanced checkbook, show generosity, and learn basic saving and investing (consistent giving to your church or favorite charity)

19) Shake a hand–strong shake and look’em in the eye

20) Give a man hug—skip the side hug, and go arms spread eagle with bold back slaps (I know most men are still uncomfortable with this one)

21) Keep vows (our word is still important)

22) Dress like a gentleman–coordinate pants, shirts, jackets, ties, belts, socks, etc…appropriately  for the occasion

23) Tip-for example at least 15% at a restaurant, $1 for a checked coat, $1 per bag for curbside check in at airport, etc.

24) Serve others—-shovel walks, help with heavy loads, etc.

25) Handle loss—sports and games in preparation for loss in work and relationships (This is a big one for our sons)

 

There is the list.  Thanks to Randy Stinson and Dan Dumas for coming up with it.

Wisdom of Kammbia 3.27: What Is Friendship?

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A friend loves at all times,
And a brother is born for adversity.” {Proverbs 17:17 ESV}

Better is a neighbor who is near than a brother who is far away.” {Proverbs 27:10 ESV}

Those two verses of scripture got me to thinking about friendship. What is friendship? Why is so important to the human experience?

Well, I had a conversation with someone last week that told me they were leaving our church for another church closer to home because of the lack of friendships they had.Friendship in our culture is fractured. We have work friends, after work friends, church friends, and childhood friends. Unfortunately, not of these friends really intersect or interconnect with each other in today’s modern life. However, one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in my Christian life is that God connects our entire life together: family, work, social life and even friends. So I believe it’s important to bring every area of life together into a cohesive unit for his Glory.

Here are some lessons I’ve learned about friendship and how it can be interconnected to all the other areas in our hectic, fast-paced lifestyle:

1) In order to have friends, one must become a friend: Because of our disconnected and fractured lifestyle I just mentioned it has become harder to be a friend. With the demands of work, family, and church, it has become much easier to only focus on your life rather than someone else’s life. And it hard to become a friend when you are only focused on yourself and your immediate concerns. Also, friendship takes time and there is a rhythm to every friendship. Some friendships have a rhythm like a rock-n-roll tune and some friendships have a rhythm like a smooth jazz song and we must pay attention to what the rhythm of the friendship is and don’t force it to be something it is not.
2) Don’t go into a friendship with an agenda: I believe we as Christians can be guilty of this principle quite a bit. We start a friendship by inviting them to church or a bible study without ever really getting to know them as human beings. Sometimes we can see them more a soul to be saved than an actual friend. I understand the desire for that, but people want to be appreciated for who they are first not what you want them to become. I remember the person who led me to Christ nearly a decade ago and she knew my passion for novels and music. We started a friendship from there and she never tried to force the Bible on me or tried to get me to go to church with her every Sunday. She took a genuine interest in what I was interested in and the friendship developed a rhythm from that point and over time it led me to having a spiritual life. Please keep the agenda out of friendship and people will be more open into becoming your friend.

3) You are not going to click or connect with everyone you attempt a friendship with: I’ve had to learn this one especially among other believers in the Lord. People have different personalities or temperaments and sometimes you can click someone better than another person. Don’t take it personally. We as human beings are unique and distinct and will always gravitate towards some people more than others. I heard the concept that we should “date for friends like we do when we dated for our spouses.” Oops…I know that may be sensitive subject for some of you, but I like the concept though. Sometimes it may take a failed attempt or attempts at a friendship in order have a real friendship thrive.

Well, I hope these tips will give you some encouragement and that we all pursue genuine friendship.

Wisdom of Kammbia 3.26: Is Classic Literature Relegated To The Same Fate As Classical Music?

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My wife and I went to the Symphony this weekend for our date night.  We both wanted to try some different than the usual dinner and a movie for our night together.  We thought going to the San Antonio Symphony would be just the thing to take a chance on.

Well, I must admit both my wife and I were falling asleep during the 1st piece by Mozart (Piano Concerto No. 22) and though the second piece by Shostakovich (No. 8) was louder and more interesting than the Mozart piece. I still had trouble staying awake and we both left the theatre before the Symphony ended.

I’m a music lover.  I listen to everything from Jazz, R& B, Rock, Gospel, and Country. So I’m always open to good music regardless of genre but I have never fallen asleep on a musical performance even if I didn’t like it.

I’ve been thinking about that experience all day (Even during the San Antonio Spurs-Memphis Grizzlies Western Conference Finals playoff Game 1. Go Spurs Go!! ) and wondered do modern readers have the same experience that my wife and I did at the symphony.

How many readers have given up reading The Scarlet Letter by Hawthorne?  Or Moby Dick by Melville?  Or a fat novel by Dickens like David Copperfield or Nicholas Nickleby?

If so, what can be done about it?  Has pop culture affected our ability to be able to read those aforementioned works or listen to a Mozart or Shostakovich?  Or is both classical literature and music relegated only to the elite in our society?

As you can read, I have more questions than answers or a solid opinion on this blog post.  I would like to know how others feel about it.

I decided a few years ago to make sure I read one classic a year.  I started with Madame Bovary by Flaubert and a couple years ago I read David Copperfield by Dickens.  Last year, I read Utopia by More. I’ve learned in reading these classics than human nature is basically the same regardless of the time period and it has taken me out my comfort zone from the contemporary literature I’m used to reading.

So how can we keep classic literature from suffering the same fate as classical music?  Or is it a lost cause?

Wisdom of Kammbia 3.24: Who Is The Best Novelist? (Elite 8 Round Part II)

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We have reached the Elite 8 in the Sixty-Four Novelist March Madness Style Tournament to determine whom readers believe is the best novelist or the most beloved novelist. The winner of the Stephen King Bracket will face the winner of the Cormac McCarthy Bracket.

Here are the results from The Sweet 16 round in the Stephen King bracket:

1 seed Stephen King vs 29 seed Tony Hillerman (King beats Hillerman 80% to 20%)

2 seed John Grisham vs 24 seed Sidney Sheldon (Grisham beats Sheldon in an unanimous decision)

3 seed Dean Koontz vs 23 seed Elmore Leonard (Leonard beats Koontz 66% to 34% in an upset.)

5 seed Ray Bradbury vs 21 seed Anne McCaffrey (Bradbury beats McCaffrey 75% to 25%)

6 seed Tom Clancy vs 20 seed Michael Connelly (Clancy beats Connelly 75% to 25%)

7 seed Anne Rice vs 19 seed Richard Paul Evans (Evans beats Rice 66% to 34% in an upset.)

8 seed Nora Roberts vs 18 seed Dennis Lehane (Roberts beats Lehane 55% to 45%)

11 seed Robert Heinlein vs 15 Jan Karon (Heinlein beats Karon 75% to 25%)

Here are the Elite 8 Match-ups: (vote for the Author you want to win the match-up)

1 seed Stephen King vs 23 seed Elmore Leonard

2 seed John Grisham vs 19 seed Richard Paul Evans

5 seed Ray Bradbury vs 11 seed Robert Heinlein

6 seed Tom Clancy vs 8 seed Nora Roberts

Vote often!

Wisdom of Kammbia 3.23: Who Is The Best Novelist? (Elite 8 Round)

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We have reached the Elite 8 in the Sixty-Four Novelist March Madness Style Tournament to determine whom readers believe is the best novelist or the most beloved novelist.

Here are the results from The Sweet 16 round in the Cormac McCarthy bracket:

1 seed Cormac McCarthy vs 27 seed Russell Banks (McCarthy beats Banks 80% to 20%)

2 seed Philip Roth vs 26 seed Donna Tartt (Roth beats Tartt 75% to 25%)

3 seed Toni Morrison vs 23 seed John Irving (Irving beats Morrison in an upset 60% to 40%)

4 seed Don DeLillo vs 22 seed Michael Chabon (Chabon beats DeLillo in an upset 60% to 40%)

5 seed Thomas Pynchon vs 21 seed T.C. Boyle (Boyle beats Pynchon in an upset 66% to 34%)

8 seed Richard Ford vs 18 seed Flannery O’Connor (O’Connor beats Ford in an upset 57% to 43%)

9 seed Gabriel Garcia Marquez vs 16 seed Harper Lee (Garcia Marquez beats Lee 67% to 33%)

13 seed Margaret Atwood vs 14 seed Wallace Stegner (Atwood beats Stegner 80% to 20%)

Here are the Elite 8 Match-ups: (Vote for the Author you want to win the match-up)

1 seed Cormac McCarthy vs 23 seed John Irving

2 seed Philip Roth vs 22 seed Michael Chabon

9 seed Gabriel Garcia Marquez vs 21 seed T.C Boyle

13 seed Margaret Atwood vs 18 seed Flannery O’Connor

Vote often and thanks for your participation!