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Fresh off the Kindle Presses~The Good Little Nurse-based on my mom's story

August 14, 2017

Any examples of a movie that's better than the book version?

August 11, 2017

I have no trouble thinking of examples of books that are better than their movie counterparts, but it's hard to find movies that are better than the book. How can a two-hour movie effectively outshine the original? Psycho comes to mind. It's not my favorite movie, but it's better than the book, thanks to Herr Hitchcock.

The author of the book called Psycho was Robert Bloch. He portrayed the role of Norman Bates as a middle-aged man, dominated by his mother. He also based the character on a serial killer named Ed Gein. Imagine Norman Bates as a middle-aged man! Hitchcock wisely made the character younger, thinner, and gave him a full head of hair. If he hadn't been so awkward socially, not to mention a taxidermy aficiando, one might have even thought him handsome. The young Norman Bates made the movie pop. Sure the house was spooky, sure showers became verboten, but because Norman Bates was slightly attractive and likeable, the movie became even scarier. The take-away: People prefer evil to be attractive. The very thought makes me shudder.

Last Chance Island Summer Sale!!!

August 7, 2017

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What are your thoughts on serving on a jury?

August 4, 2017

Twelve Angry Men was my first introduction to the jury system, and ever since watching that movie, I've longed to sit at the long table and argue the facts. I've never made it past the waiting room. I don't care if a haze of smoke hangs over the room as it did in the movie. I don't care if personalities clash, as did Lee J Cobb's and Henry Fonda's. Chances are I'll never make into the courtroom because I'm an attorney, although I don't practice. My mother made it past voir dire several times, probably because she had an honest face and a sweet disposition. Little did the court  know that like Henry Fonda, she had enough gumption to stand alone against the jury, and the vote was 10-1. And like Henry Fonda, she made the other jurors stay until they'd argued the facts into the ground. But unlike Fonda, she was unable to persuade every juror to her point of view, which resulted in a hung jury.

The main problem for my mother was the fact that the defendant was a repeat offender, and the jurors were quick to believe that he deserved to go to prison based on his past record, but my mom argued that the item he stole was on sale when he stole it, which dropped it to a misdemeanor. So the question that confronted the jury revolved around the value of the item stolen, not the act of stealing. She was right.

My mom's a small lady, four foot ten if she stands tall, and almost 89 years old, and she's full of stories. I've captured some of them in my new book, which will be out in a few weeks, called The Good Little Nurse.

Twins: My book is a bit dark, but it's #8 on Amazon!

July 29, 2017

The Princess Bride-Why I love it

July 28, 2017

I have seen this wonderful parody innumerable times, but it never gets old. What's not to love? Giants, priests with lisps, Miracle Max, Pirates named Robert. What makes it so fun is the irony of it all. It's ironic that the hero and heroine are named Buttercup and Westley rather than, say, Aurora and Roman. It's ironic that the giant is not only gentle but can keep up his end of repartee with Montoya. It's ironic that the Miracle Max announces that Westley is "only mostly dead." I love irony. (Here's where I make the leap to Biblical irony, so you can stop reading if you care to). God's word is full of irony, so I have to think that God has a sense of humor. Consider the book of Esther. It never mentions God, but it's full of his providence in countless ironic scenes. If you haven't read Esther for irony, give it a read. The Queen Bride has at least eight ironic scenes. So, what example in any book or movie comes to mind when you think of irony?

Check out the cover of my new book, which will be out shortly.

July 24, 2017

Who is the real heroine of Gone with the Wind: Scarlett O'Hara or Melanie Wilkes?

July 15, 2017

When I think of Gone with the Wind, Scarlett O'Hara comes to mind because it's her story. From the opening scene where she's surrounded by admiring suitors to her on-again-off-again relationship with Rhett Butler to her dogged determination to keep Tara by any means, we see her morph from a self-absorbed debutante to a self-absorbed widow again and again. But one overriding characteristic persists. Scarlett wants what she can't have. There's no doubt she's a survivor, and we admire her resolve to overcome her circumstances, but through it all, she doesn't change; she's still self-absorbed and wants what she can't have.

Melanie Wilkes didn't get her cousin's self-absorbed genes. She doesn't have Scarlett's indomitable spirit. She doesn't have Scarlett's resolve and ingenuity to overcome obstacles. But what Melanie has is the ability to see the best in people like Scarlett and others. She is gentle, kind, faithful, loving, forgiving. Sounds like a list of the fruit of the Spirit, doesn't it? Books aren't written with Melanie as the main character. That bothers me. We're more drawn to self-absorbed people like the Scarletts and the Kardashians and the housewives from every metropolitan city.

The thing is I think I'm more like Scarlett than Melanie. What about you?

The Wonder of Forrest Gump

July 7, 2017

The Wonder of Forrest Gump

July 7, 2017

Have you ever had that sensation where you hear some new word or name or anything, and then it pops up several times within a day or so? When that happens you wonder if that new thing was always there but you hadn't paid attention to it?

That sensation happened to me in the last week or so. I've been writing a book called A Good Little Nurse, and since I spent three weeks with my mother, who is a retired nurse, I thought I'd pick her brain, since I'm clueless when it comes to nursing. It wasn't easy because her memory isn't as sharp as it used to be, but she told me story after story about her experiences as a student nurse. It occurred to me that my mom has led an extraordinary life.

One night we watched Forrest Gump. Here was an ordinary person, just like my mother, and he was a witness of or a participant in extraordinary events. The comparison between the two of them resonated with me as I traveled back to Florida. Certainly, my mother didn't meet President Johnson, but she was mistaken for Mrs. Nixon at a hotel (that was her name) and put in the presidential suite with secret service guarding her door. She didn't have a clue. She didn't carry soldiers on her shoulders like Lieutenant Dan, but she cut off a man's arm to save him from crushing his head in a press.

My first week back at church, guess what the theme was? Heroes-ordinary people who do extraordinary things! Some people would call that a coincidence, but I call it a God-thing. In the Bible, it was referred to as a "double witness," a legal concept that required two witness to convict a suspect of a crime.

One last thing--have you ever seen a person in a crowd that resembles someone you know, and then you see other people that look like the same person? That happens to me all the time. I consider it a prompt to pray for that person. Call me naive. I just prefer providence to coincidence. What are your thoughts?


My new novella is live on Amazon!

April 1, 2017

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