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Friday, November 1, 2013

The Sunshine Award - Call and Response

Well, it's happened, for the first time in my life. I've been nominated for an award!

The Sunshine Award, to be exact, and since Susannah Friis (susannahfriis.com) nominated me, she gets to ask the interview questions...

Here goes!

  1. What goals have you accomplished this year? I wrote two self-help books (being primed for Kindle now) and began another novel. I've also increased my fitness level to pass the PT qualification test for BUD/S (Navy SEAL school), and am on track to operational fitness by the end of the year. I'm pretty happy with that, as I'm 52 years old, and very seriously ill. Exercise hurts, but not being fit hursts worse.
  2. What do you think is your best quality? Willingness. If asked to help someone, I've learned to cultivate willingness, because help given reluctantly is worse than none at all.
  3. What was the last compliment you received and what was the last one you paid to someone? Last one received was this evening. I was making brownies, and set the oven to 450, not 350. My wife was rather pleased that I caught it before they brownies lit off. Last one given was to my wife, about an hour ago, when I pointed out to her how professionally she had behaved in an uncomfortable situation she described that happened at her job.
  4. What are you looking forward to during the rest of 2013? Finishing "Magic Dragon", my novel-in-progress set during the final months of the Viet Nam war, and dealing with the evacuation of orphans.
  5. Do you have a favorite, kind of 'lift-me-up' quote? Sure. It's from Al Sever's book, "Xin Loi, Viet Nam". "We don't have rights - only responsibilities."
  6. What inspired you to start blogging? Same reason I write. I wanted to give something to people, let them see that they can make a difference in building a better world.
  7. What is creativity for you? That's a tough one. I don't see myself as creative, much less an artiste. My aspiration has always been to be something of a tradesman, as far as writing is concerned. professional and competent, with the story taking precedence over my persona.
  8. What about yourself do you want to improve? I'd like to learn to be a better husband. I fear that I'm really too reserved.
  9. What's the one thing you can't live without? A sense of purpose and mission in what I'm doing. I can't just 'hang out'.
  10. What's your favorite way to relax? I learned long ago to take relaxation in short doses - then back to work. So I usually have a book and a diet soda with me, and will take opportunities for "five-minute-vacations". I don't need or want more time than that.
Now it's my turn to nominate -

"Tales from the Redhead"
Beth Vogt
Becky Doughty
Gwendolyn Gage
Dave Hamlin

Give it a shot!


  1. You're only 52? I thought you were a Vietnam Combat Veteran, like my husband. Silly me, that's what I get for jumping to conclusions.

    Congratulations on your nomination. I particularly like your answer to #9: "What's the one thing you can't live without? A sense of purpose and mission in what I'm doing." Amen!

    Have you read Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl, MD? His discovery of the meaning and purpose in his life happened during his years in a Nazi concentration camp. It's a great book, one of my all-time favorites.

    1. Thank you!

      No, Viet Nam wasn't my war. I worked in a similar climate, but on a couple of other continents. The opposition was pretty unpleasant, and I'm surprised I ain't dead.

      Frankl's book is on my list to read soon. I found purpose and faith doing the job mentioned above, but it's a story that'll never be written.

    2. Thank you for your service, Andrew. My youngest brother is about your age and also served in a war he does not want to discuss. Then in '96 he was in the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia when it was hit with a terrorist attack. He had been out on the balcony smoking a cigarette, and stepped back inside his room just seconds before that side of the building was blown off. My brother survived physically intact, but many didn't. He helped pull the bodies of the young men he had just finished training out of the rubble.

      Heartbreaking. Oh, dear Lord... I'm looking forward to the day when there will be no more war.