Archive for June, 2014

SAGA
June 28, 2014

Every story has a past.

How did I get from funny SCAM to serious CHILDREN? From drollery to drama in twenty-four  planetary revolutions?   It’s a sad leap.  It should have been a happy one. From David Letterman to Rush Limbaugh. From Madeline Kunin to Sarah Palin. From Isaac Asimov to James Dobson. From America  going sane to America going mad. From a world with a future to a world going extinct.

From relative economic stability to economic collapse. From ignorance of global change  to a chilling concern.  From a cold war to endless wars. From a world with hope of feeding hungry mouths to a world where, in some circles, hungry mouths are  a punishment from on high. From wealth, the acquisition of vast riches in few hands proving god was on your side. From a world with hopes and dreams to a dark world filled with-powered by, financed by, infiltrated with-voices welcoming  the end of times. Praying for it. Working for it. Nourishing it.

They feed on death. Not life.

Kauai, today,  is the eye of this fictions storm. A microcosm of what could be. Over populated. Riddled, burdened  with hunger, homeless, sickness, crime, drugs, corruption, military might–the Defense Department is  the largest employer in the state. On Kauai.  The world IS  in the throes of the Sixth Extinction. It is. That is a fact.

This was my foundation. I just moved it along. Sped it up. The future. Not so hot. The triple whammy, pandemic, hurricane, tsunami. Kauai, the only island in the  archipelago that stands a  chance of making it. A slim chance. Will it be the cradle of a new civilization? The beginning of a New Dark Age? Who are the players? What is the game? What about the children?

Now, before you’ve all run off and crawled under the bed, I gave those people hope. I gave these people a ruined island rich with sunshine, water, land. Hidden valleys. Loving hands. Precious children. Rich with talented,  hard-working people who have survived the apocalyptic crash  and have a plan. Are working on a plan. Working to make it work. Confronted with a group who want to see it fail. Who have other plans.  The dark side, if you will, of the struggle.  And it will be a struggle, Many confrontations. It moves from one encounter to another. For 387 pages I lead you through, beckon  you  to follow. You’ll love and hate  them. You’ll fear and fight them. You’ll be with’em or agin them.

Bob Woodruff said, “To change the future, first you have to imagine it.” Reilley, the narrator of this epic said, “They were the best of men at the worst of time.” You’ll travel with her through madness and despair.

She  runs the gamut of fear and hope, of struggle and sex and sadness, of youth and age, of laughter and adventure.  There is not a human condition she has not had need  to address. And you’ll meet a search and rescue dog who will steal your heart.

 

Children of the Extinction
June 21, 2014

There  is a river. It’s called Amazon.  On that river, the best book I ever wrote,  CHILDREN OF THE EXTINCTION drifts like a golden straw in a torrential library so vast, and overflowing with debris, it  boggles.

When The Scam, my humorous novel, flew to New York in 1985, it snagged a New York Agent. it was  a  fledgling trying its wings in the biggest apple tree in America. In those days my books began on long yellow legal scratched and scarred with lead from loaded pencils,then typed on pristine  sheets of paper on a portable typewriter my husband had taken  to college.  He often  laughed and said I married him because he had one.

Bill  wanted to be the  writer but, turned out, I was. Why I started so late in life-I was 24-is another story. As I advanced through the ranks he bragged to pals I was a budding Dorothy Parker. Most of my first published works were humor. Humor’s hard to write, hard to sell, but I was pretty good at it. I got jobs in the writing business, a  Windward side weekly, The Pali Press, then uptown for the Honolulu Star Bulletin/Advertiser Sunday paper.  The two majors jointly published Sunday. I also acted professionally, at the Hilton, where I excelled as a comedian. Love making people laugh.

Then Kauai. One of the loveliest islands in the world. A third world country-sugar was king-with a different idea of what the wife of a department head- a knight at the table- should be. Spout party line.  Don’t rock boat. Give and go to parties. Play the game.  I didn’t excel at the party/game playing  level and spoke my mind. Neither publishing nor theater was at its peak. Back to writing meant: letters, columns, political, peace  and environmental criticism. The Garden Island Newspaper-wonderful Editors and staff-became my friends.

After my husband died I self-published The Scam. A timeless, funny piece about hippies in the 60’s,  which is why New York didn’t publish it. “Wouldn’t touch the 60’s with a ten foot pole,” said they-1985.  Today-2014- they will. The  good old days remembered. The future plundered with religious end- of -the- world vicious madness.

Which brings us to EXTINCTION. The mess we’ve made of this planet, this island, is heart breaking stuff.  Today to get published one must first get a NY agent and the odds against that are 30,000 to one. I won’t put my horse in that race, but I’m compelled to tell the truth. To write my heart out in a whole new game. Computers. Words on a screen  flashing through cyber like ET through space. Kauai in the future. A future gone bad. An apocalyptic time, “They were the best of men at the worst of times,” says the narrator of this sad tale and I’ll introduce you to this story, bit by bit. Peopled with characters so real you’ll feel you’ve known them forever. And a search and rescue dog who’ll quickly find a way into your hearts.

 

LOVE BOAT
June 7, 2014

I’m stuck on the love boat. The emotion is such a powerful one it can be applied to anything. For an example: I love tomato soup. I mean, I love it. So does my digestive system. So do my taste buds. With my loveable VitaMix I can build a tomato soup that never tastes the same way twice.

Those are my taste buds talking, In my new book, Children of the Extinction, the kids do a lot of eating and, as I sit at my computer, I get a raging case of the munchies. Good thing I enjoy non- fattening snacks.

There are loves that strike my ears, too. I love Gaite Parisienne and Joan Baez . I love harps and pipes and the song of the birds. The screech of the parrot, the thunder of a peacock’s voice.

Fragrance? I love Shalimar. My mother always smelled of Shalimar. Her closets. Her dresser drawers. Her bathroom. Your could nose her presence a block away.

For the eyes? I love green plants, tall trees, red flowers. I love blue skies, grey skies, gold skies in the morning, red skies at night. I love moon glow, star shine and rainbow glitter. Ever seen a moon rainbow? ‘They’ say you’re not an Hawaiian until you’ve seen one.

‘They’ say los of things.

I love ink on paper. Words. I love the English language. I love Vonnegut and Thurber and Sandberg.

What do I love to touch the most? My horse’s thick mane, my dog’s silky ears. I guess, today, what I love most are animals. All animals. The good, the bad and the ugly. A world without animals? Horrors.

I recall a debate as to whether animals have souls. It’s an interesting idea to a devout non-believer-who does not ‘believe’ in souls, but who does know, if there is such a thing, animals have one, too.

Gary Zukov,of all people, one of the finest interpreters of frontier science, believes animals have collective souls. His Seat of the Soul is a “readable , thought provoking (work) on how our perceptions must change dramatically if we are to survive.” If you have a curious, loving mind I hope you find and read it.

What I do know from years of observation? From an open mind that can look and ask questions and not get totally lost in the god/no god thing? Loving all animals, that’s us, too, is a good idea.. Our closest living relative is the chimp. We can exchange blood- providing our type is the same, of course- and that, to me, a devout non believer is a wonderful thing to think. I love that we’re related to this incredible creature.

I hope all of you reading this will share with me this love. Wlll love all animals on this planet. Even us guys.

The essence is all about love. The love of life. Be thankful you’re a living thing on such a beautiful planet. Let’s hope greedy, lesser minds do not destroy it.