Writing Your Way to Health with Bonnie Milani, author of Home World…

Bonnie_Milani_Head_ShotAND a giveaway! That’s right. For the first time EVER I have been given the opportunity to host a WOW! Blog Tour with a FREE book giveaway. Woo hoo!

Author Bonnie Milani is here today to talk about Writing Your Way to Health…a topic that is near and dear to my soul. I have to tell you, what she wrote had me bouncing up and down in my chair…and looking around for my notebook.

And now, Bonnie, take it away!

Writing your way to health…seems almost counter-intuitive, doesn’t it?  After all, the two most fundamental physical aspects of writing involve something modern medicine regards as critically unhealthy:  hours of sitting and seeming isolation.

Now, I have no argument with the need to get out and exercise.  It doesn’t take a Hemingway to know that you have to get the blood flowing if you want the brain cells to spark.  But let’s face it: if you’re a writer, no matter what else you do there’s a little voice in the back of your mind grousing that you’re not writing.  And unless you pay that little voice heed, the gnawing dissatisfaction it generates will make you sick.

I believe completely that the need to tell stories is God’s gift to us, just as He gifts musicians and mathematicians and great engineers their special talents.  I believe storytelling is an intrinsic piece of a writer’s soul.  We have the gift because we’re supposed to use it.  I think we all know the feeling:  stop writing, or just ignore your need to write, and your soul shrivels.  You may not even know why, but the world takes on a sour tinge.  Even when you know life is going well on the outside, your innermost self just cannot be happy with it.  Ignore your gift for too long and the very act of ignoring your gift turns into a canker at the center of your soul – a canker sore that slowly poisons how you see and respond to your world.  Gradually that kind of poison seeps out of the soul and into your bloodstream.  It drips acid into your attitude, your relationships with your family, your coworkers.  Worse, it’s an attitude that attracts other bitter souls, whose own disappointments serve to reflect your own.  In short, you can’t ignore your gift without damaging your health.

Ah, but when you take even an hour each day and apply your gift … your soul blossoms.  You find yourself doing the Cheshire cat grin at total strangers on the street.  And miracle of miracles – suddenly those total strangers are grinning back at you.  The world feels brighter, happier, more welcoming.  The day to day hassles of life don’t change, but you find your response to them mellows out.  Life just feels more satisfying.  More right.   Physically, we can talk about pheromones and mood enhancement, but as writers we’ve got the control drug right in our souls.  We can quite literally write ourselves healthy.
Haven’t you ever felt that way?  Felt the happy little pop when you jotted a story idea down?  Or the intense wave of satisfaction that follows the words ‘the end’?  Bet you have.

Oh yes…YES I have! Thanks, Bonnie. You are absolutely, positively right!

And now it’s time to win a FREE copy of Home World by Bonnie Milani. All you have to do for a chance to win is post a comment on this blog post. That’s right. You can type a thoughtful response to Bonnie’s lovely article. Or you could type “Hi, Bonnie.” Or you could even type “the end” just to remember/see how it feels. The contest will be open until Midnight on Sunday 12/8/2013. The winner will be announced on Monday 12/9/13.

Home World is a fast paced, well written story about the power and the price of love. ThisHome_World_Cover story takes place amid the ruins of a post-apocalyptic Waikiki. Jezekiah Van Buren thinks he has found a way to restore Earth – Home World, to the other worlds of the human commonwealth. His goal is to restore his home to her lost glory.

Ingenious even by the standards of the genetically enhanced Great Family Van Buren, Jezekiah has achieved the impossible:  he has arranged a treaty that will convert Earth’s ancient enemies, the Lupans, to her most powerful allies.  Not only will the treaty terms make  Earth rich again, it will let him escape the Ring that condemns him to be Earth’s next ruler.  Best of all, the treaty leaves him free to marry Keiko Yakamoto, the Samurai-trained woman he loves.  Everything’s set.  All Jezekiah has to do is convince his xenophobic sister to accept the Lupan’s alpha warlord in marriage.

Before, that is, the assassin she’s put on his tail succeeds in killing him.  Or the interstellar crime ring called Ho Tong succeed in raising  another rebellion.  Or before his ruling relatives on competing worlds manage to execute him for treason.  But Jezekiah was bred for politics and trained to rule.  He’s got it all under control. Until his Lupan warlord-partner reaches Earth.  And suddenly these two most powerful men find themselves in love with the same woman.   A woman who just may be the most deadly assassin of them all.

Paperback: 423 Pages
Publisher: Promontory Press
ISBN-10: 1927559235
ISBN-13: 978-1927559239
Twitter hashtag: #HWorld

Home World is available as a print and e-book at Amazon.

Home World Website: www.homeworldthenovel.com

Author Bio:

Bonnie vividly recalls the book that helped her decide she could out-write another writer: it was a junior reader’s biography of Sir William Harvey, the 17th century English physician credited (in the West) with discovering how blood circulates. After about 30 pages of telling herself “I can write better than that!” she grabbed a crayon that just happened to be blue and started editing. She was all of seven years old at the time. Unfortunately for her juvenile bottom it was a library book. She followed the dream through college and after grad school, freelancing feature articles for newspapers along the East Coast. Milani even wrote a cover story for Science Digest! Alas life and grown up responsibilities caught up with her and by her late twenties she put writing away with so many other dreams while she followed a ‘career track’. After losing her entire family, she realized story telling just a want but a need and a gift God gave her. So here she is, a self-declared “middle-aged pudge” working on getting back into a writer’s kind of real life!

OK, action time! This is the end of the post. So right now you should be clicking on the “Leave a Reply” box to win a FREE copy of the book.

In Memorium: My Darling Hyundai

My 2002 Hyundai Elantra is dying. Sigh.

She’s the first new car I ever purchased and she has faithfully supported all of my ground transportation needs for over 187,000 miles with very little maintenance and absolutely no breakdown drama.

The only time poor Hyundai looks shiny is when it rains.

The only time poor Hyundai looks shiny is when it rains.

That said, Hyundai been showing her age for a while now. Her headlights burn out about every 60-90 days. She squeals miserably when I start her on chilly mornings, hesitates when I start her on hot days and clicks noisily when we take sharp turns. Her body is dinged, dented and generally lackluster. Her interior is spotty, worn and downright ragged in places. Her visor mirrors fall out occasionally and have to be Super Glued back in place. When we go over small bumps in the road, the radio switches to CD causing a miserable and frustrating listening experience. On occasion, her driver’s side window gets stuck partially open.

Back in 2009, her alarm system was permanently disabled when it malfunctioned and the cost of repair was almost as much as her Blue Book value.

Certified Hyundai Repair Guy: Ma’am, we really do not recommend disabling a car’s alarm system.

Me: Seriously? Who is going to steal this car?

Certified Hyundai Repair Guy: You’d be surprised.

Me: I’m going to invent my own alarm system for old Hyundais. My alarm system will laugh at anyone who breaks in. It will say things like, “Dude, are you stealing a 2002 Hyundai? Seriously? How pathetic are you?”

Certified Hyundai Repair Guy: (Turns away and tries to hide the fact that he’s laughing.)

In weird and not-so-complimentary ways, this raggedy old Hyundai has started to reflect my crappy self-image. For months now, I’ve been telling myself that I really should invest in a new car. Better Feng Shui and I’m worth it and all that crap. But then I would remember how much I hate, loathe and despise car shopping…and how much I LOVE budgeting $0 for car payments each month. So I’d crank up my ABBA Greatest Hits CD to bypass the radio issue and drown out all of her aging car noises and keep on driving.

A few weeks ago, after taking us for a lovely drive up to the Appalachian Trail, Hyundai pulled into the garage and just gave up. Fluids suddenly gushed out of her. She reeked of burned chemicals. I half expected to see all four tires deflate. The message was clear. She was DONE.

We’ve been together 11 years and I love her. I really do. But it’s time to let her go.

Yes, I could invest in costly repairs and force her to continue to limp along. Yes, the costly repairs would still be cheaper than getting a new car. Yes, there are plenty of cars on the road over 200,000 miles and still going strong. Yes, I still hate, loathe and despise car shopping. But I have made up my mind to do this thing.

And now that I find myself deep in the trenches of car shopping, I realize that a person’s relationship with their vehicle – what we drive now, what we’ve driven in the past, our first car, our first new car, how we go about choosing a vehicle, and how we deal with this whole modern necessity of vehicle ownership – it really does say quite a bit about a person’s character. We all know this even if we pretend it isn’t true. And we judge. We do!

Think about it.

Scene 1: A slim brunette in old Levis steps out of a green convertible Beatle, slings a backpack over one shoulder and checks her iPhone as she bumps the car door shut with one hip. Nose still glued to her phone, she hurries away.

Scene 2: A slim brunette in old Levis steps out of a 1958 Chevy pickup, slings a backpack over her shoulder and turns to kick the driver’s side door closed, giving it a second kick to make sure it’s really shut. Then she turns and hurries away.

Scene 3: A slim brunette in old Levis steps out of a white Lexis SUV, slings a backpack over one shoulder and looks around as she eases the car door shut. She spots someone, waves and hurries away to meet the other person.

What assumptions have you just made about these three women?

Coming Soon: On Car Shopping & Character Building

A Confession…

I’m having an illicit affair.

His name is Sr. Rossi. His eyes are the color of the Caribbean Sea at sunset…and perfectly crossed. His body is a creamy buff, but his ears, face, toes and tail are a delicious shade of coconut brown. Every time I get close to him, he turns somersaults and purrs thunderously.

20131105-113623.jpgI am in LOVE! Don’t tell Zoey.

Alas, he is not mine. When I leave this beautiful place, I’ll be forced to leave my love behind.

And I must admit, after watching him frolic along the seashore with his lawful owner, he seems very content in his current relationship. He shadows her as she strolls through the waves, happily pouncing after the tiny scuttling crabs, never more than 20 feet from her side. Sigh.


stalkerish photo of my fantasy feline and his owner taken from our balcony.