Thursday, January 29, 2015

Suicide Forest by Jeremy Bates Book Review

Title: Suicide Forest 
Author: Jeremy Bates 
Publisher: Ghillinnein Books 
Pages: 350 
Genre: Thriller/Suspense 
Format: Paperback/Kindle 

 Just outside of Tokyo lies Aokigahara, a vast forest and one of the most beautiful wilderness areas in Japan...and also the most infamous spot to commit suicide in the world. Legend has it that the spirits of those many suicides are still roaming, haunting deep in the ancient woods. 

When bad weather prevents a group of friends from climbing neighboring Mt. Fuji, they decide to spend the night camping in Aokigahara. But they get more than they bargained for when one of them is found hanged in the morning—and they realize there might be some truth to the legends after all. 

  For More Information
  • Suicide Forest is available at Amazon

My Review

When I heard the premise of this book, I was fascinated. In fact I was so fascinated that I Googled Suicide Forest and watched a video on Youtube following someone through parts of it as they narrated the details and what was said about it. Creepy, to say the least.

So, when I picked up Suicide Forest by Jeremy Bates, I had a feeling I was in for a page turner. And boy, was I right. This book follows a group of seven, who decide to go camping in Japan's Aokigahara Jukai, a dense forest located at the base of Mount Fuji (look this up online, it is absolutely beautiful). Even though signs are posted urging people not to enter the forest, they decide to enter, thinking this might be some fun. The forest is called Suicide Forest for a reason - it is said to have a lure, calling people to its depths where many take their lives.

Because of how dense the forest is, it is easy to become disoriented, and each person on the 'adventure' begins to experience some anxiety over the fact that not only is the sunlight unable to penetrate the trees, but there is literally no sound in the forest. Where is the wildlife? As they make their way deeper into the forest they encounter a group of trees which causes them to separate and explore different areas of the forest. This is when things really pick up.

The things that are seen through the forest are enough to raise the hair on your head, especially when you consider that this is a real place, and the author is relying on details to weave this frightening tale, a tale that will leave you wanting more, yet hoping that the terror ends soon.

Not only is the plot of the book enough to intrigue you and keep you reading, the character development is some of the best that I have read. I would highly recommend this book and am proud to say that it the first 5 star review I have written in some time. Great job Jeremy!


Jeremy Bates is the author of the #1 Amazon bestseller White Lies, which was nominated for the 2012 Foreword Book of the Year Award. He has spent the last ten years traveling the world, visiting more than thirty countries. He has lived in Canada, the United States, Australia, Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines. Bates is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario with a degree in English literature and philosophy. He is an active member of Horror Writers Association, Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Inc., and Crime Writers of Canada.

For More Information

Visit Jeremy’s website.

Connect with Jeremy on Twitter , Goodreads and Facebook   

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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Interview with Erik Williams, author of Guardian

Guardian banner



Title: Guardian
Author: Erik Williams
Publisher: Harper Voyage Impulse
Pages: 254
Genre: Military Thriller
Format: Paperback/Kindle

 The heart-pounding, action-packed sequel to Demon.

 A secret order at war with itself.
A Syrian official who wants to set the Middle East ablaze.
And all of them want nothing more than one unlucky CIA agent …

 CIA agent Mike Caldwell just confronted a fallen angel and survived. But he wasn't the only one tracking down Semyaza, and the demon's escape from an ancient tomb has caught the attention of several powerful entities. Now they will stop at nothing to get Mike to play by their rules. Mike must head out on an international mission to confront the covert brotherhood in an effort to save the world from destruction.

  FOR MORE INFORMATION
  • Guardian is available at Amazon
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
Could you please tell us a little about your book?

Guardian is the heart-pounding, action-packed sequel to Demon. The story:

A secret order at war with itself.
A Syrian official who wants to set the Middle East ablaze.
And all of them want nothing more than one unlucky CIA agent …

CIA agent Mike Caldwell just confronted a fallen angel and survived. But he wasn't the only one tracking down Semyaza, and the demon's escape from an ancient tomb has caught the attention of several powerful entities. Now they will stop at nothing to get Mike to play by their rules.

Mike must head out on an international mission to confront the covert brotherhood in an effort to save the world from destruction.

The heart-pounding, action-packed sequel to Demon.

A secret order at war with itself.

A Syrian official who wants to set the Middle East ablaze.

And all of them want nothing more than one unlucky CIA agent …

CIA agent Mike Caldwell just confronted a fallen angel and survived. But he wasn't the only one tracking down Semyaza, and the demon's escape from an ancient tomb has caught the attention of several powerful entities. Now they will stop at nothing to get Mike to play by their rules.

Mike must head out on an international mission to confront the covert brotherhood in an effort to save the world from destruction.

Did something specific happen to prompt you to write this book?

Yeah, the first one!  I had a pretty good idea Demon would be the first in a series.  I didn’t know the second book would pick-up five minutes after the end of the first one but I knew the trials and tribulations of Mike Caldwell would continue.
      
Who is your biggest supporter?

My wife, bar none.

Your biggest critic?

Me, bar none.

What is the most important thing in your life right now?

My family.  Besides the wife, I’ve got three daughters (a five-year-old and twin three-year-olds).  For some reason, they insist on food, lodging, and lots of princess toys.  Gotta keep ‘em happy.

What are you currently working on?

The third book in the Mike Caldwell series, tentatively titled Watcher.

Is there an author that inspired you to write?

Ernest Hemingway, Cormac McCarthy, and Chuck Palahniuk

What are some of your long term goals?

Finish the next book.  Take a much needed vacation sometime.  Maybe one day make a decent living writing.

What do you feel is your biggest strength?

Dialogue.  I’m not afraid to admit I’m damn good at it.

Biggest weakness?

Shoot, you think I’d tell you the truth on that one?

What do you feel sets this book apart from others in the same genre?    
  
Besides how awesome it is?  Well, I can tell you it’s packed with action, terror, and all around intensity.  However, I know when to wink and flash some humor.

You know the scenario – you’re stuck on an island. What book would you bring with you and why?

I’m going to say the Bible however, deep down, I think I might choose Lonesome Dove or the complete works of Shakespeare.

Are you a different person now than you were 5 years ago? In what way/s?

I have three kids now instead of a single 7-month-old puking curdled milk on me. Oh, and I’m publishing through New York now!

What is the most important lesson you have learned from life so far?

Don’t take anything for granted.

Is there anything you regret doing/not doing?

Too many to list.  Too heartbreaking to think about.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Feel free to keep up with me at my blog www.erikwiliams.blogspot.com or on Twitter @TheErikWilliams


Erik Williams is a former naval officer and current defense contractor (but he's not allowed to talk about it). He is also the author of Demon and numerous small press works and short stories. He currently lives in San Diego with his wife and three daughters. When he's not at his day job, he can usually be found changing diapers or coveting carbohydrates

For More Information


Rarity by D.A. Roach Book Feature

Rarity Title: Rarity
Author: D.A. Roach
Publisher: Amazon Digital
Pages: 197
Genre: Young Adult
Format: Paperback/Kindle

 It's her junior year at Stanton High. Brogen, an empathic teen, is looking forward to another uneventful year with her buddy Meg at her side. Meg and Brogen are not in the in-crowd, actually, they aren't in any crowd. They are content keeping a low profile and doing their own thing.

 But the first day of school brings Becca, the blonde babe, and Jay, the charismatic guy who doesn't fit any stereotype. These two new students pull Brogen out of her comfort zone and into a new social situation. And with the good parts of this new situation...comes the bad.

 Becca is attracted to Jay and is prepared to stomp on the competition when it comes to making Jay her boyfriend. Brogen wants no part of any high school drama, but life...or fate keeps putting Jay and Brogen on a path together. This puts a target on Brogen's back and she's not sure Jay is worth the wrath of Becca.

 As they journey through their school year, several life changing events alter the relationship between Jay and Brogen. But the question remains, should they give in to fate and give love a chance? Or fight it and take the easy road?

  For More Information
D.A. Roach lives in the midwest with her 3 kids and husband.  In her free time she enjoys reading, writing, music, and art.  She has had a diverse job list including teacher, pharmacist, and factory worker.  Her life is rich with vivid characters and stories and she enjoys taking inspiration from these characters and tales to create new stories.

  For More Information

 Visit D.A.’s website.
Connect with D.A. on Facebook 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The City Beneath
Title: The City Beneath (The Night Blood Series)
Author: Melody Johnson
Publisher: Kensington Books

 As a journalist, Cassidy DiRocco thought she had seen every depraved thing New York City’s underbelly had to offer. But while covering what appears to be a vicious animal attack, she finds herself drawn into a world she never knew existed. Her exposé makes her the target of the handsome yet brutal Dominic Lysander, the Master Vampire of New York City, who has no problem silencing her to keep his coven's secrets safe… But Dominic offers Cassidy another option: ally. He reveals she is a night blood, a being with powers of her own, including the ability to become a vampire. As the body count escalates, Cassidy is caught in the middle of a vampire rebellion. Dominic insists she can help him stop the coming war, but wary of his intentions, Cassidy enlists the help of the charming Ian Walker, a fellow night blood. As the battle between vampires takes over the city, Cassidy will have to tap into her newfound powers and decide where to place her trust...

  FOR MORE INFORMATION
  • The City Beneath is available at Amazon
Melody JohnsonMelody Johnson is the author of the Night Blood series. She graduated magna cum laude from Lycoming College with her B.A. in creative writing and psychology. While still earning her degree, she worked as an editing intern for Wahida Clark Presents Publishing. She was a copyeditor for several novels, including Cheetah by Missy Jackson; Trust No Man II by Cash; and Karma with a Vengeance by Tash Hawthorne. Book #1 of the Night Blood series, The City Beneath, is her debut novel. When she isn't writing, Melody can be found hiking the many woodsy trails in her Pennsylvania hometown or sunning and swimming at the beach. You can learn more about Melody and her work at elodymay.blog.comFacebook and Twitter.

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Monday, January 26, 2015

Just a Taste by Shannyn Schroeder Book Feature

Just a Taste Title: Just a Taste
Author: Shannyn Schroeder
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Pages: 259
Genre: Romance
Format: Paperback/Kindle
Grief has brought them together again—will love open the door to their future? When it’s an O’Leary in the picture, finding out is just part of the adventure… Carmen Delgado is left reeling when her father dies. Taking care of him has been her sole purpose for so long, she’s forgotten what it’s like to have dreams of her own. And with steady, sexy Liam O’Leary inheriting a share in her dad’s successful food truck, Carmen is suddenly free to explore her life’s possibilities. She never expected Liam to provide the kind of temptation she’s not sure she can resist… A talented chef, Liam O’Leary has been itching to open his own restaurant for years—and the death of his mentor is a reminder that time passes too quickly. Gus’s Taco Taxi isn’t exactly what he dreamed of, but he can’t desert Gus’s daughter. Working side by side is an unexpected pleasure—and grownup Carmen is alluring in all new ways. Is love on the menu—or will old fears and insecurities drive them apart? For More Information
  shannyn-7-199x300 Shannyn is a former English teacher, who now works as a part-time editor while raising her three kids.

 Even though she wrote from high school through college (mostly poetry), she’d never considered a career as an author. Writing fell by the wayside as she focused her energy on creating lesson plans and new and fabulous ways to torment her teen students. One group in particular dubbed her “The Torture Master,” a title she carried into motherhood.

 After the birth of baby number two, Shannyn resigned from teaching and fell in love with reading romance novels. She read so many books so quickly that her husband teased, “If you’re going to read so many damn books, why don’t you just write one?”

So she did.

That first book is safely buried on her hard drive, but the process set Shannyn on the path to where she is today—agented with a debut ebook coming out with Kensington in late 2012.

She is recovering from her Diet Coke addiction, fears putting her foot in her mouth on social media, and has a renewed appreciation for the bad girls of the world.

Shannyn is represented by Frances Black and Jennifer Mishler of Literary Counsel.

For More Information

 Visit Shannyn’s website.

Connect with Shannyn on Twitter , Goodreads and Facebook 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

New Fantasy Novel on Tour, looking for hosts! The Last Grand Master by Andrew Q. Gordon

PUYB Blog Tour Sign Up
Andrew Q. Gordon will be touring February 10 - February 27 with his fantasy novel, THE LAST GRAND MASTER!

We are looking for:

  • Reviews (paperback & ebook)
  • Interviews
  • Guest Posts
  • Book Spotlights
Please sign up on the form below. If you are chosen to host, we will email you within 72 hours. Thank you!


The last grand master Title: The Last Grand Master (Champion of the Gods #1)
Author: Andrew Q. Gordon
Publisher: DSP Publications
Pages: 350
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Paperback/Kindle

 In a war that shook the earth, the Six gods of Nendor defeated their brother Neldin, god of evil. For the three thousand years since, Nendor and the Seven Kingdoms have known peace and prosperity.

But then a new wizard unleashes the power of Neldin. Meglar, wizard king of Zargon, uses dark magic to create an army of creatures to carry out his master’s will.

One by one, the sovereign realms fall. Soon the only wizard who can stop Meglar is Grand Master Farrell, the Prince of Haven, the hidden home of refugees. An untried wizard, Farrell carries a secret that could hold the key to defeating Meglar-or it could destroy the world.

While helping Nerti, queen of the unicorns, Farrell saves Miceral, an immortal muchari warrior the Six have chosen to be Farrell’s mate. But Farrell approaches love with caution, and before he can decide how to proceed, Meglar invades a neighboring kingdom. Farrell and Miceral find themselves in the middle of the battle. Farrell pushes himself to the limit as he and Miceral fight not only to stop Meglar but for their very survival.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Andrew Q. Gordon wrote his first story back when yellow legal pads, ball point pens were common and a Smith Corona correctable typewriter was considered high tech. Adapting to the times, he now writes with a shiny new MacBook that he sets on the same desk as his manual typewriter and vintage adding machine.

Long a fan of super heroes, wizards and sports, Andrew’s works include high fantasy, paranormal spirits, magic as well as contemporary fiction. He is still trying to find the perfect story that will include all his favorites under one cover.

He currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his husband, their young daughter and dog.  In addition to dodging some very self-important D.C. ‘insiders’, Andrew uses his commute to catch up on his reading. When not working or writing, he enjoys soccer, high fantasy, baseball and occasionally sleeping.

For More Information

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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Read the first chapter of Unlocking the Mystery of You by D.L. Anderson

Title: Unlocking the Mystery of You: The Pinnacle of Purpose
Author: D.L. Anderson
Publisher: Author House
Pages: 195
Genre: Self-Help
Format: Paperback/Kindle

Purchase at AMAZON

Do you know who the most important person in your life is? Just look in the mirror and you will see – it’s you. Whether you’re a college student, a housewife, a salesman, or the president of the United States of America, the most important person in your life is and will always be you.

That being said, your primary objective in life should be to know who you are so that you can position yourself to succeed in offices aligned with your purpose. After all, your purpose is the collective reasoning behind your existence. As one philosopher puts it, “Purpose is the only real reason you are here, for you exist because your purpose exists. Thus apart from purpose, you have no authentic motivation for living. You may very well exist, but when you’re gone, very few will ever know that you were here.”

Now for some of us discovering our purpose is simple. We understood it long before we ever became adults. For others it is not so easy, and for more reasons than I can gather. This is why the process of personal discovery is so critical; for not only does it allow you to discover your purpose. It also positions you to persistently follow the evolution of your purpose.

This is important because we are all changing every day. Consequently, our purpose will also change contingent to the season of life we are in. Still, in spite of this inevitable change and all the complexities which make understanding your purpose difficult, you will always be able to detect your purpose simply because it is the source of your fulfillment. So if you’re in a job, relationship, or any office which is persistently unfulfilling, odds are it is not aligned with your purpose – and unless you are willing to concede the awesome measures of fulfillment you would experience otherwise, you need to start thinking about making a change so that you can both enhance your life and have profound impacts in the various groups and societies you are in.

“Unlocking the Mystery of You” champions this cause focusing first and foremost on purpose and the crucial role it plays in achieving personal fulfillment and setting the stage for the individual to be a catalyst for group fulfillment. It accomplishes this goal by utilizing a purposeful roadmap designated as the Pinnacle of Purpose. The Pinnacle of Purpose is a progressive path illustrated by 7 ascending levels which, if followed sequentially, not only have the power to transform your life. It will provide you with the greatest measures of fulfillment and success life can offer. All you have to do is follow the crucial, yet simple order of purpose, beginning with confidence and concluding with peace.

So if you’re ready for a change; if you’re ready to stop sleeping on your dreams and your truest passions; if you’re tired of the status quo and living a life which feels incomplete; if you’re tired of wishing your life was better and are now prepared to do something about it; if you’re finally ready to take that ever-difficult leap of faith, then this is a book you must read. Because in this book I show you how to take that leap of faith without falling, for when you leap towards your purpose, you will always land squarely on your feet.

This is true first and foremost because your purpose is what makes you unique to every other individual in the world today, a premise which thoroughly validates the existence of every man and women on the earth. The problem is that many don’t understand their purpose. Once upon a time I didn’t either. That is until I got serious about life. It was then that I realized what purpose is.
It is the collection of all your authentic desires; it is your passion. It is your North Star and your direction; it is your life-long teacher – and above all else, it is that which causes you to press through any form or measure of adversity until you unleash your maximum potential, for it gives you the strength to hold on when you have no strength left within you to hold on.

First Chapter:

I DID IT ON PURPOSE

“I didn’t do it on purpose” was one of my favorite sayings as a child. Why? It is because this confession had gotten me out of trouble on possibly 1,000 occasions, a minor exaggeration to be sure. In any event, these 6 words were priceless because they constituted my original “get out of jail free card” and saved me in several sticky situations.

Now this card didn’t work all the time, mind you. After all, there were some things I did which I could neither honestly nor semi-honestly justify with my patented excuse, and I wasn’t going to compromise the longevity of my lucky card for any incident which was clearly inexcusable. No sir; I was going to drink from this well until the water ran dry – which it did and much sooner than I would have liked. Alas, all good things must come to an end.

Fast-forward several years in time. Here you’ll find me with a much different outlook on life and a new preferred saying. That would be, “I did it on purpose,” a definitive statement which speaks to one of the most profound realities in life. As such, I will offer it as an interest point.

Classically this is where the rubber meets the road; for as everything we do is incontestably on purpose, our consistent actions reveal who we are with regards to our inner self as opposed to our personal face-value. Accordingly, it is our actions more so than our words which tell the tale of the man or woman we’re trying to be.

Notwithstanding, this tale does not always reflect who we truly are. In this regard, some of us at face-value are pretenders who are trying to be someone they’re not. This is why establishing our life upon a firm foundation of purpose is so vital, for the consistent inundation of purpose ensures our intentions and consequent actions are perfectly aligned with our destiny. Therefore, the first step in unlocking your personal mystery is dedicating yourself to being yourself and living a life of purpose.

TRUE YOU

Now if you’re like me, you know very few people who consistently say what they mean and mean what they say. You know even fewer people who without fail practice what they preach. Why the inconsistency? For the most part it’s because their lives are established on conflicting purposes; hence the irregularity.

Then again if you’re like me, you may have noticed this contradictory trend a time or two in your own life. So what did you do? I’ll tell you what I did – I set out on a personal journey to discover a path where everything I did was not only on purpose, but with purpose; specifically purposes which reflected “the real me.”

Who am I referring to when I mention the real me? Definitively I am referring to the man I would turn out to be after I successfully established my purpose in life. That is the man I was destined to become before various conflicting factors set me off-course and led me down paths contrary to my destiny. Consequently, if there is a real me, there must be a version of me who is not as real.

I’ll never forget the first time I heard someone teach on the concept of true north. It was during an astronomy lecture at Ball State University. I remember thinking to myself, “If there is a true north, then what is the regular north I’ve been learning since kindergarten?”

Of course everything made more sense at the end of the lecture. Without going into the details, there are multiple manifestations of the astronomical concept of north. However, only one of these manifestations is true north; that is the direction along the earth’s surface towards the geographic North Pole. The other variations may at times be congruent and persistently similar. Yet they are not consistently the same as true north.

The same rule applies to all of us. See the majority of us exhibit multiple manifestations. The two prevailing manifestations are “you now” and “true you.” You now is the person you are at this present moment. True you is the person you will become once all of your singular purposes are properly aligned and consequently coherent. Accordingly, the search for purpose in life is actually a search for the most authentic version of you. It’s the elongated process in which you discover and are converted into true you.

STRENGTH IN DIVERSITY

The next question we must attend to is this – why is it important for us to be true to ourselves? Honestly I could provide over 100 reasons why this cause is beyond essential. However, I would like to focus on 1 in particular; that is diversity.

Certainly diversity is a prominent pillar of every progressive society. For an example consider a football team and ask yourself this question – how effective would a team be if everyone on the offense was a quarterback and everyone on the defense was a linebacker? Trust me; not only would this team be unsuccessful. They wouldn’t be very enjoyable to watch (unless perhaps you were rooting for the opposing team).

Therefore, I would ask you to consider this follow-up question – if everyone in your society (e.g. business unit, family or organization) were a carbon copy of the person next to them, how successful would your society be? Think about it.

Here’s the next point I would like to make – every progressive society is depicted by roles which are fulfilled by the successful administration of an over-arching, correlating assignment (which I will consciously refer to as an office throughout this composition). A principal key to the success of each society, then, is that each office is occupied by the person best suited to fulfill its corresponding roles. In every other case, the inclusive lack from a poor arrangement will prevent the society from reaching its full potential. As such, it would continually degenerate until corrective actions are taken.

Almost 10 years ago I was the Director of Consulting Services at one of the largest IT firms based out of Indiana. There I enjoyed managing one of my favorite and most successful teams. It was also one of my most diverse teams, a crucial factor which positioned us to incur awesome measures of success; more success than we would have achieved otherwise.

Upon understanding this development, I began actively looking for ways to increase the diversity of our team. Thus whenever I interviewed potential candidates to fill open positions, I first considered the members currently on the team. Then I not only looked for the candidate who exceeded my expectations; I also looked for someone who would add diversity to our group.

Masterfully my strategy proved correct every time the team grew. By gradually increasing the diversity of our team, we found ourselves consistently innovated with new ideas, processes, and ways of thinking in general.

Sure we had a pretty large group of seasoned professionals who possessed awesome talents and the ability to get a lot done. However, the greatest source of our strength was not our numbers or our expertise. It was our diversity and the awesome opportunities it presented us. 

THE WORLD NEEDS YOU

At the same time, I learned that managing and participating in a diverse group presents several challenges. In particular, it forces each team member to regularly rethink and often recalibrate their views. These actions (though very necessary) are sometimes difficult because many of us have a hard time considering or admitting when we are wrong or when our way of doing things is not necessarily the best way to get things done.

Fortunately there was no one in our group who was too terribly rigid that they couldn’t see past their own methodologies. Hence this is not where I encountered most of my challenges. These unforeseen happenstances transpired as a result of the inverse scenario; explicitly some team members became discouraged when their ideas were not adopted by the group and began to withdraw.

Consensus is my preferred way to lead and always has been. So I recognized I was indirectly responsible for the withdrawal that was occurring. In consequence, I had to upgrade my management strategy to account for this unanticipated offshoot.

In time I came up with the perfect solution. I met individually with those who were withdrawn from the group and reassured them that they were critical to the team’s success. More importantly I told them why. In doing so, I reminded them why I hired them and described future scenarios where I was confident their expertise and background would be crucial to the team’s continued success.

The lesson I learned then was sure – there are peaks and valleys in everyone’s life. For that reason, we can not allow for the valleys to cause us to lose sight of the value of our role as it pertains to the group’s success. Neither can we allow the peaks to deceive us into believing we’re “all that,” for no one person will ever exceed the value and potential of a progressive group or society.

What it all comes down to is this – the world needs you. You don’t have to take my word for it. Just consider all of your offices in life and ask yourself this question – who is better suited to fulfill each of my offices than me?

See I’m convinced the vast majority of us have at least one life office which no one can fulfill better than we can. For those of you who are unconvinced, this does not mean the world doesn’t need you. Quite the contrary; what the world needs is for you to find a way to succeed in the offices you were called to and in the roles you were destined to fulfill.

Now the cause behind this need is certain and one which I hope you will never forget. Therefore I will offer it as an interest point.

This matter lends itself to why societies degenerate. It is because critical roles are not being fulfilled by the person best suited to fulfill them. Consequently, the correlating offices are either empty or occupied by someone less qualified – and alas, everyone involved will suffer the consequences in the end and after all.

BE YOURSELF

“Everybody has an office,” I declared to an adult group to whom I was delivering a spiritual lecture.
“The problem,” I told them, “is that many fail to recognize their purpose in life because they are fatally trying to be someone they’re not.” Then I shared with them a profound statement which I will offer as another interest point.

Understandably death in this context is not literal. It is figurative. That is to say, the longer you try to be someone you’re not, the farther you will migrate away from your true self. Stay on this path long enough and you will be so far removed from your true self that he or she will be metaphorically deceased – and as it is scarcely possible, we all perceive the likelihood of raising someone from the dead (metaphorically or literally).

Now I was able to make this decisive declaration for one simple cause – I had been there. Admittedly, I knew what it was like to lose sight of my true self because I was too busy trying to be someone who I thought was better than me; namely someone who I thought the world would better appreciate.
That’s when I realized I had effectually become a self-contradiction. By trying to be someone I was not, I was contradicting my own existence as well as decreasing my personal value.

While on this regressive road, I began to understand the nature of our world and found it to be similar to that of a spoiled child. You know the type. You’ve seen them throwing themselves out in grocery stores and acting unruly in restaurants all across the country. The $500 question is simply why?

Here’s the answer – a spoiled child doesn’t really know what they want. Consequently, the worst thing for them is a parent who constantly bends over backwards to meet their child’s unrealistic and unfounded demands, for these actions only work to reinforce the deficits of the child. This is true even though the parent is merely trying to be appreciated by giving the child what they presume he or she wants.

What these parents fail to realize is tragically classic; that is the child does not know what he or she wants. This is precisely why they are often only able to appreciate one thing; that is a parent who will stop spoiling them and teach them the true meaning of appreciation.

Trust me; it’s bad business when you have parents trying to befriend a child, for every parent should focus first and foremost on being a credible authority as this is the first step in effectively raising children. This is especially the case during their informative years.

How does this example relate to you and the world? Well I’ll tell you. The world is like a spoiled child in that it is by default inappreciative. Consequently, it will never appreciate those who bend over backwards trying to be someone they presume everyone will accept. On the contrary, the only way the world will appreciate you is if you stop trying to be everyone’s friend and start being yourself.

Again I ask you to trust me and faithfully consider the following statement – being yourself is the only thing you’ll ever truly be good at. This truism speaks to another interest point.


On this wise, the one sure way to tell if you appreciate yourself is by determining how committed you are to being yourself. Or as the young people tell it, “Just do you.”


Certainly this is the only way you will ever unlock your personal mystery because again, as the young people say, you are “keeping it real.” In essence, you are being yourself in every situation. This allows people to know what to expect out of you regardless of the situation or circumstances you are in.


Markedly this is exactly when the world will begin to appreciate you, for you will have proven yourself to be reliable – and who doesn’t appreciate someone who they can consistently count on?
All the same, as wonderful as this occasion is, enduring appreciation does not come painlessly.

Neither does it come quickly. Contrasting, it comes tenderly and gradually. The same way a small child does not instantly appreciate the discipline of a wise parent, the world will not immediately appreciate the value of an authentic man or woman.

Do not be troubled by this reality, for in time this value will surely be realized. You just have to be committed to standing up for yourself even when you’re standing alone – and there will be several instances when you are.

ARE YOU READY TO WALK THE PATH?

How does this all relate to living a life of purpose? Decisively everything we have discussed thus far is only possible if we have effectively established our unique purposes in life. In this regard, your life purposes (i.e. the distinct causes which collective constitute your purpose) are like tour guides. Their job is to guide you along the path which leads to your destiny.

As for me, I’ve walked this path in my life and have achieved awesome levels of fulfillment and success. From now, I want to share what I have learned by leaving behind breadcrumbs for others to follow. Therefore, the following pages of this book will speak to the aforementioned path of fulfillment and provide various life examples for both validation and understanding.

All things considered, everything in life is a choice (with the lone exception of physiological involuntary actions). Thus conclusively, if you choose to follow this path, I can make you the following guarantee – even though you will endure various seasons of grind and change, you will eventually acquire the greatest measures of fulfillment and success the world has to offer. That’s my personal guarantee.

So if this pledge sounds like a good deal to you, keep reading this book. I’m going to show you how I got there and how you can get there too.

On the other hand, if you decide not to follow this path or some similar path, I can guarantee you the opposite. Regrettably you will fail to acquire the greatest measures of fulfillment and success while never realizing your true potential. Furthermore, you will still endure various seasons of grind and change.

Granted this is not the classic life-or-death scenario; not even close. However, the quality of your life is at stake. Thus the question of the hour is simply this – how much fulfillment and success are you prepared to leave on the table?

THE SUMMATION

The majority of us will reach a point in our lives where we discover that we are not authentic reflections of the man or woman inside. As an ill-advised traveler, we’ve deviated from the beaten path and gotten lost.

All the same, course correction is not a difficult matter. All we need is a map. Enter: the Pinnacle of Purpose, a dedicated roadmap which provides purposeful direction along the path which leads to true you and concludes with the greatest allotment of fulfillment and success this life can afford.

What is more, the Pinnacle of Purpose (as illustrated in this composition) provides ample instructions and advice on how to handle various situations which could potentially cause us to lose our way. This manner of intelligence is critical because our world is unfortunately filled with haters and doubters. Disappointingly these losers in life are going to invest time in throwing stones at us as we carry on our quest.

Now in submitting this warning, I would advise each reader not to be overly concerned about this matter. See I’m not only going to show you how to become immune to these unwarranted acts. I’m also going to show you how to use these stones to help you get to where you are going.

Advantageously I’m going to show you how to turn their throwing stones into your stepping stones.
Last but surely not least, I’m going to lay a foundation for achieving self- actualization by discussing the importance of excelling in each of our life offices – and although the full disclosure of this process will be addressed in the next composition in this series, it is imperative for each purpose seeker to understand how important it is to always give our best effort in every life situation. For once we establish this model way of living, and everything else will begin to seamlessly fall into place.

This brings me to my final world on this lecture.

No matter what anyone tells you, the world needs you. Therefore, if you don’t know who you are, it’s time you found out. Only then will you be truly appreciated and wholly succeed in those offices you were called to fulfill.