Everything Special, Living Joy

Everything Special, Living Joy

Everything Special, Living Joy is about how we look at life: the glass half empty or half full. The name was inspired by Charlotte Joko Beck’s book Nothing Special, Living Zen. I had been reading her enlightening book in 1995 prior to experiencing my first eight-day silent meditation retreat, at which I was not supposed to read, write, or gaze at the faces of the other participants.

Early on in the retreat, I began to experience pangs of sadness in not being able to smile or look into the faces around me. Suddenly and surprisingly, in a meditation sitting, startling thoughts of joy and specialness popped into my head and could not be contained in such a small space. I felt an overwhelming push to write down these loving thoughts. Even the name of the book came to me in a later meditation sitting.

I believe it was the gift of silence, the time to just be, and a “room of one’s own” that allowed this book to happen. It was written in four of the eight days, in between meditation sittings and walking. I did not conform to the requirements of a “good” meditation student, but my meditation experience was profoundly wondrous!

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.

French philosopher, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

I entered the 2015 Writer’s Digest contest. I did not win, but received the following Commentary from a Judge:

Judge, 23rd Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards 2015.

Gorgeous rhythm to the book, with a gentle cadence that pulls you along. The author has a wonderful voice, very engaging and relatable. Great choice to write non-rhyming prose, so that it never feels like forced rhymes, and the lessons within can shine through. Beautifully done with exceptional description, using elements of nature to connect to mindset, such as “the waves keep coming” on page 7.

Beautiful insertions, and wise choice to bold, inspirational messages like “I already am who I’m trying to be.” That is a great comfort for the reader. Beautifully done.

The weddings entry on page 35 is a standout, surprising the reader with what people are married to, from their habits to their belief systems. Excellent wordplay here, and one of the deepest, most heartfelt sections.

Author has made a wise choice to keep this book at its current size; reader appreciates the economy of words, and it’s always good to leave them wanting more. A lovely book. Author shows great devotion to the art of Living Joy, and has chosen topics well to create an experiential read, with relatable life experiences and levels. Ending is gentle and kind, inspiring, as well.

Everything Special, Living Joy won “Honorable Mention” from the New England Book Festival 2014.

For paperback version

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P.O. Box 473
Orland, ME 04472-0473

Paperback, 6″x9″, 41 pages

Now available on Kindle!

My collection of poems and prose is available for download on your Kindle. Now more convenient to enjoy than ever!

Kindle Version, 41 pages