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WHY DO WE LOVE DRAGONS?

Dragons are magical, mythical winged creatures that we find both thrilling and frightening.  Both adults and younger readers seem to find them equally fantastic.   We’d like to believe that they might have once existed, and they are legendary in almost every culture on the planet, so why not?

They have traditionally been viewed as perilous, dangerous creatures with magical qualities that laid waste to the countryside and carried off damsels in distress, thereby having to be sought after and conquered. Some authors have written about them with this view in mind – Tolkien, Ursula K. LeGuin, and J. K. Rowling, to name a few.  The fantasy writer, Anne McCaffrey, explored human kinship with dragons, man and animal befriending one another.  Countless children’s books have now brought these fantastic creatures into the next generation to be both feared and loved.

I have continued with Anne McCaffrey’s affinity of dragon and man in my Dragomeir Series books, and now in the new prequel series, Daughter of the Dark Lord – Part One – The Burning Sky, and the forthcoming Daughter of the Dark Lord – Part Two – The Alberra Project.  (There will definitely be a Part Three!)

Dragons introduce a much needed magic and adrenaline into our lives – the appeal of being unpredictable and potentially dangerous that emulates our challenges, frustrations and achievements in an exhilarating and exceptional way.  Dragons never play by anyone’s rules.

Nowadays, dragons are our constant companions in novels, movies and computer games.  They are the most familiar and respected creatures from fantasy and legend. They can give us an emotional reaction of faithful friendship, as well as the opportunity to fly.  Dragons allow us to feel indestructible and open up our imaginations.  They give us wings.

Solitaire

www.solitaireparke.com

What are your favorite dragons?

What Foods Should Creative Minds Eat?

blueberries

If you’re struggling with feeling tired, uninspired, or have writer’s block, maybe you should take a good look at your diet.  We tend to blame everything for not being at our peak performance, but what if it’s partially as a result of what we eat?  Creative minds place very tall demands on our brains, and to do our best work we should think about what affects our productivity.  We probably won’t produce our best work if our bodies feel tired and sluggish. So check out the list below:

FOODS FOR CREATIVITY

  • FISH – High in Omega3 fats which are essential for healthy brain function
  • EGGS – Contains choline which enhances memory and reaction times
  • WHOLE WHEAT BREAD, PASTA, AND BROWN RICE – They are digested more

slowly than their white equivalents, so you don’t experience creativity-killing energy

highs and lows

 

  • BANANAS – Contains potassium needed for oxygen flow to the brain, keeps energy levels up with just the right amount of glucose

 

  • BLUEBERRIES – Contain antioxidants which improve memory

 

  • UNSALTED NUTS AND SEEDS – Great source of proteins and fats which provide long-lasting energy

 

  • BROCCOLI – Your brain’s best friend. Contains Vitamin K which enhances cognitive functions – works best when eaten raw or roasted with olive oil and garlic

 

  • SWEET POTATO CRISPS – Baked crisps, thinly sliced, with a little salt. Contains more potassium than bananas – needed for oxygen flow to the brain

 

 

If you know there are certain foods that will tempt you, just don’t keep them around.

Make sure you don’t over-indulge.  Even healthy foods and snacks can quickly lead to a

sugar crash.  (Avoid foods and snacks containing high fructose corn syrup).

It’s always a good idea to eat a healthy breakfast to start your day.

Have a snack a couple times during the day – maybe an apple or some unsalted nuts.

 

These are some ideas that should help to keep the creativity flowing and keep your brain functioning all day.  So, what works for you?  If you have a special diet that helps you to write, think, and learn better, let us know.

Solitaire

www.solitaireparke.com

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Friday the 13th – Why is it Considered Unlucky?

thirteenth

Don’t step on the sidewalk cracks, walk under any mirrors, and stay away from black cats are a few of the taboos on Friday the 13th.  We’ve all heard them before.   Most people do not take it too seriously, but there are some who dread the date. By the way, if you’re interested, the word paraskevidekatriaphobia means fear of Friday the 13th!  If you were looking for a definitive answer, there really isn’t one.   Like many cultural traditions and long-running superstitious beliefs, the exact source is unknown. It is most likely the result of many different factors, strengthened over time by a combination of specific incidents, folklore and religion that have evolved over hundreds of years to create what we now refer to as the unluckiest date in the calendar. Here are a few of the beliefs about Friday the 13th:

  1. Some superstitions about Friday the 13th are rooted in the guest list of the Last Supper. Judas was the 13th guest at the table, and Jesus was crucified on a Friday. Coincidence?
  2. On Friday the 13th in 1307, thousands of Knights Templar were arrested on orders from King Philip IV of France because of suspicions that their secret initiation rituals made them “enemies of the faith.” After years of torture, they were burned at the stake. Dan Brown’s novel The DaVinci Code popularized the link between the Knights Templar and Friday the 13th.
  3. The first specific written reference to Friday the 13th as an unlucky day was in an early-20th century novel by Thomas W. Lawson, called Friday, the 13th. Ironically, a ship named after Lawson was caught in a storm and shipwrecked on the night of Friday the 13th, 1907.
  4. Superstition can result in an economic dip. Donald Dossey, founder of the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute, says U.S. businesses lose millions of dollars on Friday the 13th, because some people are reluctant to leave their homes.
  5. Friday’s position as the unlucky day may have been strengthened by it being the day of execution of criminals for many years, commonly called Hangman’s Day.
  6. Scandinavians believed 13 signified bad luck because their 13th mythological demigod Loki was an evil one who brought great misfortune upon humans.
  7. Hindus believed that it was unlucky for 13 people to gather in one place.
  8. Most skyscrapers and hotels lack a 13th floor, which specifically comes from the tendency in the early 1900s for buildings in New York City to omit the unlucky number (though both the Empire State Building and the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel have 13th floors). Street addresses sometimes skip from 12 to 14, while airports may skip the 13th gate.
  9. Allegedly, the popular Friday the 13th films were so-named just to cash in on this menacing date recognition, not because the filmmakers actually believed the date to be unlucky.
  1. Black cats have been seen in Western cultures as an omen of bad luck — they have been associated with witches, and many cultures believe that a black cat crossing your path means you will suffer disaster or even death. Gamblers are especially fearful of the black cat curse – many of them believe that if they see a black cat while going to a casino, they should abandon their plans to gamble there.

Do you consider Friday the 13th to be an unlucky date? Has anything bad ever happened to you on this day before? Do you have any superstitions to help you avoid bad luck? Add your comments below.

Solitaire

www.solitaireparke.com

 

 

HAVE A MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR 2017 EVERYONE!!!

red-christmas-ball

christmas

This is such a crazy, busy time of year, but I wanted to stop for a minute – although I’m continuing to write amidst the chaos – and wish all of you an amazing and wonderful Merry Christmas and a New Year 2017 that’s filled with joy and prosperity!  Enjoy your friends and family, and be encouraged to go after your dreams in the New Year.  Do what you love and don’t listen to anyone who tells you not to go for it.  Be unstoppable and refuse to give up!

BE AMAZING!!!

Solitaire

www.solitaireparke.com

 

20 Motivational Quotes to Inspire Success

einstein_bicycle

Ours is an ever-changing world; one in which we often times have very little control.   Our beliefs, expectations, and the way we choose to think and feel about ourselves and others determine everything that happens to us.  We only have complete control over one thing in this world we live in – our thinking – and what actions we take as a result of those thoughts.  Using our minds to consider or reason what we should do will determine the results that we get.  If we change the quality of our thinking for the better, we can change the quality of our lives almost overnight.

So below, I have listed some great motivational quotes – some which you have probably heard many times but hold true – so that you can take control of your thoughts, think positively and make life changes that will ensure success.

Walt Disney – “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.”

Rob Siltanen – “People who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe – Knowing is not enough; we must apply.  Wishing is not enough, we must do.”

Dr. Henry Link – ” We generate fears while we sit.  We overcome them by action.”

Albert Einstein – “Creativity is intelligence having fun.”

Theodore Roosevelt – ” Do what you can with all you have, wherever you are.”

C. S. Lewis – “You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”

Brian Tracy – “Fake it until you make it.  Act as if you had all the confidence you require until it becomes your reality.”

Helen Keller – “Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow.”

Harvey Mackay – “Positive thinking is more than just a tagline.  It changes the way we behave.  I firmly believe that when I am positive, it not only makes me better, it makes those around me better.”

Confucius – “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”

Charles R. Swindoll – “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.”

Norman Vincent Peale – “Believe in yourself!  Have faith in your abilities!  Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers, you cannot be happy.”

William James – “Act as if what you do makes a difference.  It does.”

Aldous Huxley – “There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own self.”

Robert H. Schuller – “Problems are not stop signs, they are guidelines.”

Mark Twain – “Courage is resistance to fear – mastery of fear – not absence of fear.”

Unknown – “Good things come to those who wait.  Greater things come to those who get off their ass and do anything to make it happen.”

Unknown – “Life has 2 rules – 1.  Never quit, and 2. Always remember rule #1.”

Unknown – “Being happy doesn’t mean that everything is perfect.  It means that you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfections.”

So here’s to thinking positively, being fearless, and living life to the fullest.  Have a great day!

Solitaire

www.solitaireparke.com

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HORROR Books to Keep You up at Night!

dracula

One of our oldest and strongest emotions as human beings is fear.  Strangely, the mind seems to look for things that are scary; we build haunted houses, spend our hard-earned money on Horror Movies, and read Horror Novels.  It does seem a bit macabre that we as humans tend to frequent this genre.  Life is filled with fearful moments – we fear death, being alone, a lack of money, losing a job, losing a family member, and the list goes on and on.  Yet there is that adrenaline rush that the darkness and the unknown can produce which is like no other to make us feel alive.  So why does horror mystify and almost entrap us?  Maybe it is our unending curiosity or we are attempting to test our courage in an increasingly unpredictable world.  Whatever the reason, it attracts millions of people, especially around this time of year at Halloween.  So here are a list of some of the authors of classic Horror books that evoke the emotions of fear, surprise, and terror to keep you up at night!

Mary Shelley – Frankenstein

Bram Stoker – Dracula

Stephen King –  The Shining, Pet Sematary, Carrie, Salem’s Lot, Cujo, Misery (to name a few)

Edgar Allen Poe – The Fall of the House of Usher, The Black Cat, Murders in the Rue Morgue,

The Pit and the Pendulum, The Masque of the Red Death

Clive Barker – The Hellbound Heart,  The Damnation Game, Coldheart Canyon, Cabal,

                           Demons and Deviants

Dean Koontz – Odd Thomas, Phantoms, The Bad Place, The Taking, Dark Fall, Watchers,

                             The Demon Seed

Anne Rice – Interview with the Vampire, The Witching Hour, The Queen of the Damned

Jack Ketchum – The Girl Next Door, Off Season, The Woman, Hide and Seek, Offspring

H.P. Lovecraft – Dreams of Terror and Death, The Road to Madness, Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos,

                               Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre

Peter Straub – The Floating Dragon, A Dark Matter, Ghost Story, Koko

Ray Bradbury – Something Wicked This Way Comes, Dark Carnival, A Memory of Murder

Ramsey Campbell – The Face That Must Die, The Darkest Part of the Woods, Ancient Images

There are, of course, many more authors in this genre that you can check out at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, and many other online stores.

Also available on my website is a horror/thriller – “VENGEANCE OF THE WOLF”  

Vengeance of the Wolf by Solitaire Parke

www.solitaireparke.com

Have a Horror-ific Holiday!

Solitaire

 

 

 

“Tinker Smith & the Conspiracy of Oz” – AVAILABLE NOW!

tinkersmith_title

Return to the world of  Oscar Zoroaster, The Wizard of Oz and many of the characters from L. Frank Baum’s  classic books.  Enjoy a whole new world where Oz is once again in the spotlight, along with ten genetically altered children who are attempting to save the world from this power hungry scientist who is determined to control the world with a computer virus.  Johnny and his father meet Tinker, one of the ten children and together they forge ahead in the hope of survival in a strange world of machination and espionage. Their survival could be determined by how they utilize their fantastic genetic abilities, but will they have the determination to stop Oscar Zoroaster, and yet retain some semblance of their own humanity in the process?

The Iconic characters of L. Frank Baum’s beloved classic “Wizard of Oz” books are revived once again with an entirely new twist that is more in step with the present times.

”TINKER SMITH & THE CONSPIRACY OF OZ” is available at $0.99 for a short time in e-book format from Smashwords.

smashwords_ebookformats

Also available in paperback at my website – www.solitaireparke.com

Happy reading!

Solitaire

 

 

July 4th, 2016 – Happy Independence Day!

american_flag_mountains

Independence Day of the United States, also referred to as the Fourth of July or July Fourth in the U.S., is a federal holiday commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, by the Continental Congress declaring that the thirteen American colonies regarded themselves as a new nation, the United States of America, and no longer part of the British Empire. Independence Day is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, barbecues, carnivals, fairs, picnics, concerts, baseball games, family reunions, and political speeches and ceremonies, in addition to various other public and private events celebrating the history, government, and traditions of the United States. Independence Day is the National Day of the United States.

Have a great Fourth of July – GOD BLESS AMERICA

Solitaire

www.solitaireparke.com

 

 

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Memorial Day 2016

American Flag

Once again it is May 30th, and for many it is a long weekend for camping, parties, lots of sales, and even Memorial Day cruises.  There are many reasons why this day is notable.  But let’s not forget the real reason – the important reason.  It was set aside to remember and honor all those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the military service of America . . . Those who died fighting to preserve our lives and our freedom.  They won’t be here to celebrate with us because they gave up everything for us.  So amidst our celebrations, let’s pause and take time to remember the thousands of men and women whose lives were cut short so that we could live, and be with those we love to enjoy our freedoms.

God help us to remember the cost of our blessings and to remain worthy of that cost.

 

Solitaire

http://www.solitaireparke.com

 

One of the most amazing lessons you’ll ever learn about writing!

yellowflower

I came across a blog site today that was incredibly insightful and full of terrific information by a prolific writer, Jon Morrow. His site, BOOST BLOG TRAFFIC, is one that you will want to visit again and again to keep you inspired, to give you up to date great ideas for blogging and just writing in general, and probably change the way you think about being a blogger or writer. According to Jon Morrow, the sky’s the limit, and you are capable of almost anything. So believe in yourself and check out the site of an incredible man and his story. Be sure to check out the “Popular Posts” and get his Free download!

Click here – http://boostblogtraffic.com/jon-morrow-confession/

 

Know of any other posts that are great for writers/authors? Please Share!

Solitaire

www.solitaireparke.com

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