Thursday, October 13, 2011

Where is your hero?

Today it seems many are searching for a hero.  They’re looking behind doors and around corners, in search of the ever elusive hero.  Why?  Often times, the people who we think are heroes disappoint, either failing us too consistently or at the absolute worst time.  Regardless of whether we’re talking about politics, leaders, families, athletes, etc. the canvas we see tends to want, almost demand, a hero be included in the brush strokes of our perspective.  It goes to say that with the search for these heroes there is a part of our psyche searching for villains, those we can heap the most blame on.  It doesn’t matter if it’s a terrorist, a competitor, or a person who has a different belief of God or politics: our mind is amazingly adept at enveloping them with a villainous fog.  I’ve decided I’m tired of this way of thinking; hopefully, others are also tiring of it.

I remember Ted Turner’s efforts to start the “Goodwill Games.”  It impressed me so much that I wrote a letter to TV Guide saying something really corny like “before people can work together they need to learn how to play together.”  I was around 12 years old and they actually published it (my first and only attempt at writing professionally until my recent novel, A Work in Progress).  As I think back about my letter to TV Guide I’ve come to a conclusion.  We need to stop looking around for our hero and instead, look inside our own selves and become the best hero we can possibly be.  This doesn’t mean we’ll be successful but it does mean we’ll be striving to be a better person and once we have obtained being a better person we then need to try and climb another rung of that ladder in our effort to become a hero.  As we take each of those steps we’ll be making our part of the world a little better.  Even the renowned Dr. Phil has a quiz you can take in order to see if you’re on the path to becoming an everyday hero, try it and see where you stand on this quest - (

We’ve all heard about the individuals surrounding us who are doing the best that they can.  Am I?  Are you?  If each of us makes a conscious choice today to become a better person tomorrow will that change the world?  Probably not, I don’t think there are enough readers of my blog (it would be pretty cool though, wouldn't it?), but we will make a difference in ourselves and to those around us.  Somebody has to be first, why not us?   Let’s try and do something extra tomorrow…heck, let’s try to do something extra tonight and then, when tomorrow rolls around let’s do it again.  Each day we’ll be striving to be better and it won’t matter whether we reach hero status or not because somewhere along the way we’ll have made a positive difference in somebody’s life and like the concept of “paying it forward” who knows where this might take us!  Maybe tomorrow it’ll be helping someone you don’t know or putting down what you’re doing to pick up and comfort a crying child.  You see, heroes to me aren’t worshipped and rare; they are average people doing the best that they can do.  That’s why I created the character Jeremy Jackson in my novel.

He’s not a rhetorical hero; he’s a real one, a regular guy who has to make difficult choices and struggles making those choices.  Is he always right?  Absolutely not!  To me heroes in the real world, or at least in “Larry’s World,” aren’t perfect in their choices but they try really hard to make the best choices.  In one of my favorite television shows (NCIS) there’s a character played by Mark Harmon: Leroy Jethro Gibbs.  Now, let me tell you, Leroy Jethro Gibbs is a hero.  I don’t care whether or not he’s real; he’s still a hero to me.  Is he always right?  No (almost though) and he has his flaws.  But that’s sort of like my character Jeremy Jackson – he’s not always right but he’s always trying.  I believe we each have a bit of hero inside; some more evident than others, and whether or not we find that hero our efforts to be a better person are what the world needs!  If you like what I’ve said and/or the way I’ve said it maybe you’ll check out my book.  But even if you don’t check out my novel please tell others to look inside themselves and search out the hero hiding there; let’s start making a difference together and let's start today.

If you want to see how Jeremy Jackson takes on his challenges you can find my book at for either the Kindle or in print and see for yourself, if you want to let me know your thoughts you can check me out on Twitter @AboutmybooksLS, email me –, go to my website or go to my novel’s Facebook Page at!/pages/A-Work-in-Progress/225449777471634.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Hope - Where is it today?

I have created my blog on the 10th anniversary of 9/11.  Why?  Well, it’s because I believe in hope.  The events of 9/11 were an attempt to suck that hope out of our lives as well as our culture.  But guess what, it didn’t work.  The terrorists failed as most bullies do.  It didn’t work then and I don’t believe it will work now, though it seems that our country needs to find the hope lost due to the challenges and frustrations created by our current economic and political environment.  We need to not only feel hope but also visually see hope emanating from our leadership and, unfortunately, it is hard to see much less find.  One of my favorite movies is “Mr. Smith goes to Washington” with Jimmy Stewart.  I think it should be part of our country’s high school curriculum and mandatory for our politicians to watch.  But where can we find the Mr. Smiths of today?
I watched a program last night about the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  A woman who lost her son in those attacks was interviewed.  He had called and left a message on her answering machine before the towers fell.  She made an incredible statement.  It was a powerful statement.  She said (I’m paraphrasing here) you can either be mad and angry for what you lost or you can step back and say wow, we had him for 33 great years and be thankful for that.  I would like to believe but, in reality, I don’t know if I would have that kind of strength and courage.  This woman impressed me.  This mother who lost her son gave me hope.  I know that nothing I write will offer that much strength or hope but maybe it can offer something positive.
There are a lot of places where hope can be found but unfortunately many of those places are not in Washington.  I am an author who tries (and I hope succeeds) in writing stories that offer hope.  In my novel, A Work in Progress ( my main character, Jeremy Jackson, is a regular guy who gets caught up in something much bigger than he is, facing two options – one is giving up and the other is fighting for something.  There are a lot of other authors who write with similar forms of hope.  John Locke’s Donavan Creed series offers hope in the average guy.  Gerard de Marigny, an up and coming author, does the same.  Musicians like Davin McCoy and The Coming Attractions sing of hope.
We can find hope but it’s just not that obvious.  I wish there were more Jimmy Stewarts in the world but it seems we’ve not found them yet.  We must never give up our hopes and dreams, whatever those hopes and dreams are.  This blog isn’t about selling my book, it is about reminding people there is still hope and there are those who still try and offer that hope though it seems that our hopes and dreams keep getting beaten down.  As I’m sure you’ve heard like I have the saying that “bad news sells” and if you watch enough news you know it’s true.  The extremists, regardless of their perspectives and affiliations, get the most interest and highest ratings.  Don’t get caught in this trap.  Search out the providers of hope.  Take the extremists for what they are: extremists.
If you want a break from the realities of the day, the recession, the jobless numbers, the fear then check out the authors and musician I’ve mentioned above or check out my book – you can get it in a print version or for the Kindle.  Regardless of how you do it though, don’t give up on hope.  I would love to hear from you.  My blog will only have an entry once every 4 to 6 weeks so I promise I won’t bombard you.  If it means something to you then please pass it along.  I would love to make the message of hanging on to your hope something that goes viral on the internet but even better yet goes viral in our society.  Let’s make a difference together.  Let’s make hope a virus!  How cool would it be to help make hope something people are catching!  I know, it sounds corny, but hey, at a minimum, it might help one person find some hope in the current challenging environment we are prisoners of and I know that just one more person becoming hopeful would be a good thing.  Check out my website – – my twitter @AboutmybooksLS – my novel’s, A Work in Progress, Facebook Page:!/pages/A-Work-in-Progress/225449777471634 and if this really meant something to you then please e-mail me and let me know: – I would love to hear from you.  My main character, Jeremy Jackson, and I both thank you for taking some of your time to read this, maybe together we can make hope the news of the day!