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In Search of Perfection

“I am careful not to confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence, I can reach for; perfection is God’s business.”  Michael J. Fox

Humans seek perfection in all things. We seek it in the products we buy and the services we use. We expect others to behave in a manner that meets a set of clearly defined ideals (whether we recognise this or not). Interestingly, everyone has a different set of values and behaviours that we deem perfectly acceptable. When we judge someone’s behaviour as being bad or wrong, we are doing this with a mindset of perfectionism. (Think about this for a minute!)

Surprisingly, we are seldom able to provide that same level of perfection we seek in others.

(Though we may strive for it)The-myth-of-perfection-that-keeps-us-from-parenting-effectively-1

At first you may think this is a little extreme but it isn’t, let me explain…

When we buy something, we want it new and shiny and we expect the item to perform perfectly. Fair enough if you’re buying a car or a new fridge. However, we also expect this with lesser-valued items and we even expect the box and packaging to be without blemish, even though we will throw the box away as soon as we get home.

We expect our lawnmower/gardener person to trim our lawns with deft precision, leaving neither weed nor blade of grass behind.

Extreme perfection

And imagine if your accountant made an error! Soon enough the taxman would let you know that he performed less than perfectly.

We expect our teenagers to make perfect choices (choices we approve of), we want our celebrities, and rock stars to always appear perfect and behave like model citizens. They are, after all, society’s role models. The truth is we actually have higher moral expectations for others then we do for ourselves.

When it comes to creative and artistic endeavours like writing books – we demand perfection. Once you have read a few book reviews you will discover just how many readers expect perfection. (Sometimes even beyond what is normally expected or humanly possible.)

It is not unusual to read a book and discover a mistake or two, or sometimes, many. Mistakes appear in both traditionally published books and independently published books. But does a missing comma, a misplaced full stop or a misused adjective really affect the enjoyment of a good story. Usually not.

Remember that a novel writer has around 100,000 opportunities to make a mistake.

I like a book where you can feel the author’s passion for the story and their characters. Sometimes stories are well written and sometimes not, but if the passion is present then a few mistakes are forgivable. (Lazy writing, unedited manuscripts, endings rushed to meet deadlines or books uploaded to Amazon for profit alone, are a different story.)

Often there are bigger mistakes, like the use of shudder and shutter (these words are not interchangeable… they have different meanings! Look it up.) Or continuity errors, where car models change or eye colour varies throughout the story. And while errors like the misuse of shutter/shudder make me want to scream, they (usually) don’t make the story less enjoyable.

I am not perfect, and I know that I often make mistakes, in writing and in life and I am quite happy to accept a blemish or two, a dented package or a missing comma.

Perhaps it’s time to be less harsh in our judgement of others (not just writers); perhaps we should seek perfection only when we can offer it ourselves. (This is highly unlikely so don’t even try).

I know this doesn’t apply to all of us and it isn’t something we do all of the time, but it does apply to most of us, a lot of the time. I do realise that we don’t want to buy inferior products or to be surrounded by crappy broken things but there are many times when ‘stuff’ just doesn’t matter!

So next time you think J Lo’s butt is a few inches bigger or smaller then you’ve come expect or the book you’ve just read has too many missing commas… stop and say, “Does it really matter?” Then get over yourself and your sense of perfection and have a great day!

Cover of "The Back-Up Plan"

Cover of The Back-Up Plan – I think this is the movie poster where they made J Lo’s BUTT bigger… because that’s what audiences expected to see!

I thought I would search Google to find suitable images for this article. I thought I would have trouble, but guess what? I didn’t. There are hundreds of articles and images on the subject of perfection. Here are some you may find interesting…

http://imperfectaction.com/blog/2009/06/01/personal-development/stop-chasing-for-perfection/
http://www.ghostwoods.com/2012/08/perfection-1500/
http://creativewithkids.com/myth-of-the-perfect-parent/
http://ryanwiancko.com/2011/02/16/embrace-the-darkness-embrace-the-perfection-embrace-the-happiness-of-the-moment/

Interview with Grace from Paradox The Angels Are Here

This interview was first posted on Julie Crane’s Blog

Let me start out by saying that Patti Roberts is one of my favorite young adult authors. Not only is she a phenomenal writer, she is truly a giving person. She is always friendly and willing to lend a helping hand. I’m not sure how I stumbled across the first book in her series, but I’m glad I did. I fell in love with Patti’s writing and her characters. The below interview takes place with one of the main characters from the Paradox series at the age of 14. In book two—which I just finished—Grace is now 16, and I am anxiously awaiting the third book.

If you would like to check out Paradox Patti is one authors of First 5 Chapters – Volume 1.

Cover for First 5 Chapters

6 Authors - 5 Chapters

This ebook will give you the opportunity to discover & read the first 5 chapters from 6 up & coming new Authors in the very popular YA – Fantasy – Paranormal genre. Amazon Only .99 or Smashwords Free!

Good morning Grace, it a pleasure to have you with us today

Thank you, it is nice to be here.

 We know it’s been difficult for you and your mother Kate, since your father died. How are things going now? Is Kate eating and sleeping normally? 

Oh mum is fine now, we both are.  At first I wasn’t sure if either of us was going to make it – or if we even wanted too.  I was so young, eleven, and I felt so lost without my dad.  But with the help of my amazing friends Josh and Angela, life has been, well different, but good.  And I never thought I would be able to say that.  I know that mum  is really grateful that Wade has been here  – for the both of us.  He is like a surrogate dad.  My dad would really have liked him.  When I was little, I used to close my eyes and pretend that my dad was still there.  That Wade was my dad.

 

Angela has become your best friend and you admit she is a bit odd. Have you ever talked to her about her strange behaviour? And do you ever feel frustrated by the things she says? 

 At first I did – not that I had any friends to compare her with!  Other than Patrick who died so young, Angela was my first real friend.  Then of course Josh came along… He had a huge crush on Angela – he still does!  I was never frustrated by Angela.  Surprised, yes – often!  Angela has this special way about her that makes it impossible for me not to want to be around her.  And Josh, well he is just like a brother.

Do you think your match making efforts with Angela will ever work? 

Okay, well that is frustrating!!!  Here is this great guy who just adores her to bits and it’s like she just doesn’t get it!  I would do anything to have a boyfriend that loved me like that!

 Tell us a little more about Josh? 

Josh is adorable – I could hug him to death.  Mum calls us the three musketeers’, Angela, Josh, and I.   Josh is so great, he would make a wonderful knight in shining armour.  And he always makes me make me laugh.   Not Angela though.  But then no one can make Angela laugh…  Dad would have called her an old soul in a young body.

 Most children and many adults want a Guardian Angel or an imaginary friend. So I was shocked to learn that you sent Hope away when you needed her the most. Hope was part of your life for over three years; do you still remember her? and do you miss her?  

Hope was just a dream, an imaginary friend.  I know that now.  Mum needed me.  She used to say that I just made Hope up when I was little because I didn’t have any real friends.  Hope sure felt real at times though, and dad even used to play along.  He made us both swords when we used to play dress-ups for one of my favourite movies The Lord Of The Rings.   I would love to have a real Guardian Angel, that would be great!

 Eleven is very young to have to care for an adult when your mother should have been caring for you. We understand she was grieving, but you were so young, do you feel robbed of your childhood because of the way your mother reacted after your father died? 

 It was a sad and weird time.  I missed dad so much but I was more afraid of what would happen to me if mum died too.    I used to have such vivid dreams about losing both my parents. So just having mum there, in any condition, was good enough for me.  And then there was Wade, so…

 The visions you have are certainly intense, how much of these do you remember and can you see a connection to your current life?

At the time I have my visions or dreams – I’m really not sure what they are – but they always feel so real – like they really happened.  But I don’t think they are connected to my real life.  I read somewhere that dreams are just your mind trying to make sense of random thoughts you have throughout the day.   Maybe I just have a vivid imagination.

 What is Darwin like? I

have always wanted to visit but it seems like another world away.  Darwin is really great.  I like living here.  Not that I have ever lived anywhere else.  It will always be my home too me.  Some people don’t like the heat and the rain that much.  Well okay, it does get hot sometimes but I don’t mind, I’m used to it.  And the rain, well that can be smothering at times but I really love the thunder storms – they are kind of amazing and scary but at the same time they are powerful – energizing!  That does that sound weird?

 Wade has been very helpful and supportive. Do you think he is falling in love with your mother? 

 When I was little things like that never crossed my mind.  My mother wasn’t capable of loving anyone other than my dad.  But now, well sometimes I think it would be kind of cool.  She shouldn’t have to be alone for the rest of her life.  And sometimes Wade reminds me so much of my dad that they could be related.  Like they are brothers or something…

 Are you still a vegetarian?  

Oh yes, ever since I saw those cows being slaughtered at the abattoir I have never been able to eat red meat ever since.  It was just so horrible, and the smell…  I feel sick just thinking about it.  I really like fish though.

Thanks for talking with us today Grace,

Thank you, it has been fun.  Easiest homework ever…  Well kind of homework.  Everyone starting high school has to do these interview type assignments for the new student councilor, Miss Siena Cintra.  She is so pretty and I wished I had hair like that.

About the Author

Name Patti Roberts

Location Cairns Queensland Australia.

On any given day you can usually find me sitting at my desk in front of my laptop pounding away at the keys writing another chapter in the Paradox series. That would be a run of the mill kinda day for me!

A packet of Cruskits and a water bottle, that is now at room temperature, is sitting on the desk beside me. There is also a mass of USB cables, notepads, bills to be paid, bills to be filed a bunch of pens and a printer that is forever running out of ink. Sound familiar.

On most days I have to remind myself to eat and drink. I Should be thinner!!!

I am sure my housemates are very thankful that I still manage (usually at some ungodly hour) to bathe, brush my hair and clean my teeth.

I don’t know about you. But I am usually mortified when visitors just pop around, only to find me sitting at my desk and still in my PJ’s. I don’t even want to broach the hair situation! Did I remember to put last nights dishes away???

Now, they say to be a good writer, you must read, read, read. Then read some more…

Thankfully, due to the invention of the electronic reader (I have a kindle and love it) I get to read more these days. Correction… I have my kindle read to me! The only thing is, I have so many great books on my kindle that it is so hard to know where to start. So many choices.

A little more about me… And how you can contact me.

Born in Brisbane Qld Australia.
Grew up in Darwin in the NT.
Now living in Cairns Qld.  Where the Rainforest meets the Great Barrier Reef.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Paradox-Series/150822348341990?sk=wall

Blog: http://theangelsarehere.wordpress.com/readers-questions-answered/

Twitter: http://twitter.com/PattiRoberts7

Thank you to all those souls that have read my book – you make my day!

PS: If you are thinking about popping a round for a coffee, that might be nice. But please give me a quick call first so I can brush my hair and smear a bit of colour across my lips.

Interview with Justice from The Fallen One – Sons of the Dark Mother

First 5 Chapters – Volume 1 Blog Tour

This post was originally posted on Ritesh Kala’s Book Reviews

Character Interview with Justice from The Fallen One – Sons of the Dark Mother By Lenore Wolfe

JUSTICE, WHO IS THE PRINCE OF FIRE

Justice was cloaked with Fae glamour at a young age to keep the world from knowing his secret. He is the Prince of Fire–one of the rare Starborne of the Jaguar People. When he and his sisters were very young, their parents became side-tracked, suddenly not paying the attention to their kids that they had been. But the kids didn’t learn why for many more years to come….

At 14, Justice is forced to shape-shift, much too young to handle such a power. After that, he becomes hunted–until he becomes the hunter.

They learn that the ancient vamp, Constantine, is the one hunting them. He wants control of all the humans think they control. He wants the humans period. And he wants the Jaguar People, the ancient vamps and Fae armies brought to his feet–to heed his rule. Most of all, he most certainly does NOT want to follow the laws of ancient vamps–the ones who were NOT turned–but learned how to live once more–through the intake of life giving blood.

Constantine has learned to rule through the fighting–and the winning–of many battles. He is a legend who believes he is not bound by ancient law.

Justice and Dracon, who is the Prince of Air, the Prince of Water and the Prince of Earth, as well as the Sisters of Three, and Justice’s own sisters–along with the Alliance and Fae armies–must fight Constantine and his rogue factions of vamps to save Mother Earth from the certain destruction of Constantine’s rule.

~~~~~

Ritesh: I thought it would be very cool to have Justice come over and chat with us. He was very nice and took some time out to come and talk!

Interview with Justice from 

Lenore Wolfe’s The Fallen One

Justice

Ritesh: Hi Justice! Good to have you with us today and thank you for agreeing to answer some of my questions. We humans know very little about your people and any information you give us will be extremely helpful.  I will try to not keep you away for too long from your responsibilities. So, let’s get started.

Ritesh: I’ve always wanted to ask, who is a Starborne and what can you tell us about the Jaguar People?

Justice: The Starborne are 5 ancient races of people who brought the original races to Mother Earth many thousands of years ago, when they brought the original stones and the original temples of the people. The Jaguar People were one facet of these people.

In our people there exists a prophesy of one will be born, who will be the Prince of Fire, He will be of white hair and violet eyes, and he will remember the ancient teaching that were forgotten with the fall of Atlantis.

This prophesy also says that he will unite with the Prince of Air, The Prince of Water–and the Prince of Earth to save our Mother Earth from certain destruction, when the Dragon rises up to devour her. The factions of rouge vampires, who are led by Constantine, seek to rule our Mother. Should they succeed, our people would be laid at their feet, along with the Air People and the Water People. And the Earth People, who are brothers of the Fae, would be their slaves–but the humans would become as their cattle–as food–to supply their never-ending thirst for their life blood.

Ritesh: Can you tell us about your childhood? What is the most memorable memory you have?

Justice:  During my childhood, I was cloaked with glamour and made ready to rule. I and my sisters spent our childhoods being taught the ancient way. And we spent many hours in training for war.

But during any idle time, I would always try to be around Jes. If I were to recall a memory, it would be of her laughter as she played with my sisters on a swing set at a human playground.

She was the sweet sunshine of my youth.

Ritesh: How many siblings do you have? Who is your favourite among them?

I have three sisters: Jasmine, Mia and Ophelia. And I love the three of them with all my heart and being. But I was able to spend most of my time with Jasmine, when we spent many years at a time separated after our parents disappeared. So I am probably closest to her.

Ritesh: You were forced to shape-shift at a young age of 14. Can you tell us what happened? How did you handle it?

Many times we were met by human gangs on our way to school, and I was responsible for our younger sisters. I had beat them back, time after time. But they always came back for more. And on that day, they came back with too many for me to beat down. I was slipping into the world beyond–when I felt the change.

My people are not supposed to tap such power until we reach our majority. But I had tapped into my power by touching my death.

On that day, they met their own deaths–and I met the monster inside of me, who was capable of killing….

Ritesh: Can you tell us a bit more about your world, the one we humans do not really seem to know about? Also, can you tell us about all the various beings in this world?

There is a whole world amongst the humans, and yet, the humans remain unaware. We walk among you, work with you, and even try to guide you. But the children of the Earth, the ones who are human, and not Fae, must awaken soon–and take their place beside us–or all will be lost.

The others are the races of Her Waters, the races of Her Air, and the races of Her Fire. To find us–you need only to allow yourself to remember who you are.

Ritesh: You’ve had a tough life thus far. What can you tell us about Constantine and the ancient vamps?

Constantine is an old battle vamp–who loves war. He originally commissioned the writings of your human bible–but he was buried as a Pagan. Yet, many kept secret that he yet lived. The Dark Cloth, the dark forces that hide behind the human governments, seek to control Constantine. Yet, he remains a power unto himself. He seeks only his own power and his own gain. He lives–to find those who can challenge him in battle.

Constantine lives to have war. There is not a battle he does not know–or a strategy of war he has not used personally. He fights only to win. Ruling over humans, and the rest of us is merely a secondary treat for him.

Ritesh: I hear you’re the Prince of Fire. So, what does that mean? What powers do you have? Also, can you tell me about the other princes? How was the Alliance formed?

The Alliance has existed for as long as we have been on Mother Earth. So, too,  has–the Dark. The Alliance was shattered to the corners of Mother Earth by the fall of Atlantis. But slowly, she was rebuilt. Now the many races have been working to bring all of our people back together, and we await the human race.

I have the power of fire–and my shape-shifting abilities. But we have only just brought the Princes of Mother Earth back together–we are only just learning what that means–and what powers that will bring–so stay tuned human–you might learn something yet.

Ritesh: How is the battle progressing? Tell me the truth; do I have something I should be worried about?

We have been working hard, Constantine was only a small portion of what we face as the children of Mother Earth, the Children of Atlantis. Constantine is NOT the Dark Cloth. All of her children must awaken, now! We are at the cusp of a new millennia, but we must be diligent, or all really could be lost….

You have only to worry if your race remains asleep while we battle. There is much to do–talks of which the humans should be taking part. As long as you remain oblivious to the Dark Cloth, they keep you cloaked in your ignorance.

Ritesh: Finally, one last question. How can I contact you if I want more updates about the war and to find out if all of you are fine?

You can write to lenorewolfe@gmail.com. She will know how we are all doing. Or you can simply remember who you are, and you will know yourself.

~~~~~

About The Fallen One by Lenore Wolfe

An ancient race and a prophecy foretell of four dark princes, the sons of the dark mother, who will rise up with a nation of old vamps to stop the rogue factions from ruling over mankind.
Justice is the first in that prophecy, from the ancient Jaguar People. He is the Prince of Fire. Jess is one of the three sisters of the Jaguar witches who must help him to stop these factions of rogue vamps–or none of their lives will ever be the same.
To know more about the Fallen One, you can visit:
Blogs:

~~~~~

About Author Lenore Wolfe

Lenore Wolfe grew up in Montana, and Alaska, and currently lives in central US. She holds a BA in Sociology, from the University of Northern Colorado, with a minor in writing, and she is student of the Shaman path.

Lenore writes dark fantasy, paranormal romance, fantasy, historical romance.

Thank You

Tomorrow Child Cover Art

Credit for my cover art goes to several artist at Deviant Art who provided the stock images for Tomorrows Child and gave me permission to use their images.

Stock images were supplied by

Morgana Thread_Stock [link] for the Model

Shadowelement-stock [link] for the Background image

thy-darkest-hour [link] for the rocks in the foreground.

Thank you all so very much for your amazing stock images and generosity.

And thank you to all the amazing artists at Deviant Art who inspired me to create my own cover. You guys Rock.