Wednesday, July 30, 2014

7 Tips to Improve Your Writing

Great writing doesn’t happen by accident. Like any other art or trade, it requires lots of discipline, careful study, and a great deal of time. If you find yourself struggling every time you sit down at your laptop (or, if you’re more old fashioned, with a pencil and paper), you’re not alone. Every great writer struggles from time to time, but the ability to push through the rough spots usually helps you emerge better at your craft. Here are seven tips to help you improve your writing.

1. Do it Often

Think of writing like you’d think of running. You wouldn’t just wake up one morning and expect to run a marathon — you’d need to train and practice for a long time before you were able to go a long distance without difficulty. The same holds true for writing. You’ve got to write frequently — every day if you can. The more you do it, the more natural it feels, and the easier your thoughts will transfer to written (or typed) words. If you need inspiration or a prompt, there are many books and even more websites full of prompts for creative writers. Pick one and get going.

2. Rewrite

Your first draft is never your best. Your second draft isn’t much better. Read, re-read, and carefully examine your drafts, using hard copies if you can to physically cross things out and write down comments. If you can, leave some time between writing and revising; you’ll have an easier time reading what’s actually there instead of what you want to be there.

3. Keep Reading

Read great writing — as much as you possibly can. Think of yourself as an apprentice learning a sacred craft. Look at the masters and see how they do it. Plot, sentence structure, character development, dialogue — you can learn a great deal about all of these things by reading great books on a regular basis.

4. Nouns and Verbs

Great writing typically means strong nouns and verbs rather than long strings of adjectives and adverbs. They’re often more specific and get right to the heart of what you’re trying to say. Remember: quality isn’t always quantity. If you find yourself using lots of adjectives and adverbs, see if you can replace your qualified noun or verb with a stronger, unqualified one. For example, you can run really super fast, or you can spring. You can eat a big whole lot, or you can gorge. For pithy writing with few adjectives and adverbs, try some short stories by Ernest Hemingway or Gertrude Stein.

5. Do it Properly

English is your tool, so it’s essential to use it properly. There are zero excuses for poor grammar, misspelled words, or improper usage. If you’re unsure of something, look it up. Lots of reading will help you learn how to use English properly, but if you want to go one step further, get a copy of Strunk and White’s Elements of Style and read a few pages each day. It’s a favorite reference book of many writers, and it explains the rules of the language in an easy to understand manner.

6. Intelligence and Honesty

Many beginning writers try to make their writing cute, trite glib, or flippant. Others go in the complete opposite direction and come across sounding pretentious. Any of these approaches is a mistake, however. Instead, show respect for your subject matter, and offer your true voice to your reader. Be smart, and be honest. It’s always the right thing to do.

7. Know and Learn

Regular reading will help you with this, but make a point to learn as much as you can. In our look-it-up society, there’s no good excuse for not having an answer, not knowing about a topic, or not doing your research. Trust your senses and be inquisitive. It’s a characteristic that will serve you well as you embark on your journey as a writer. 

Friday, July 25, 2014

My Zombie Novel over half complete

I know I have not been posting much and would like to explain why.  First off I just finished a summer semester finishing up my associates which has taken some time.  I also have begun writing a Zombie Horror Novel.  I picked zombie horror because it is my favorite genre of film and recently literature.  I started writing a week or two ago and it has just taken off.  The main plot is going to be centered around a quarry which a group of people built up to survive the apocalypse.

It is extremely difficult to write an original zombie horror since zombies are so flipping boring.  The same thing in every film.  Something caused the dead to rise and now they are eating people.  I try to stick with the basics of zombies best I can while leaping out on the creative edge to bring some of my personal preferences to the literature.  I have also been experimenting in short stories wanting to give something to my readers for free.

As of right now I am still working on Crime and Punishment.  It is a wonderful book though very difficult since the writer is Russian and there are many differences between English and Russian.  The style is different, language usage is very different, and the overall story is difficult because of the use of common knowledge in Russia which American's do not have.  Besides this though the book is by far one of the best I have read and as each page turns the author throws a twist.

I am also waiting to see how my marketing is going.  I have been checking position frequently and overall for such a new blog I am very happy with the results.  Anyway expect to see more reviews soon as I finish this novel and get it proofread.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Review of Affliction Z: Patient Zero by L.T. Ryan

I picked this book up free on kindle you can pick it up on amazon overall for the price I would give the book 8/10:

Taking a break from Crime and Punishment I decided to download a couple zombie horror books.  The main reason is I am writing a Zombie novel right now and wanted a bit of inspiration.  The free version can be found on kindle, if you do not own a kindle they have a printed version and if you would like a kindle I have a selection of the cheapest on the right side of this blog.

This is the first of L.T. Ryan's writing I have tried and found it quite pleasant.  The book has a story line very different from the average Zombie apocalypse.  The book begins as a special forces mission in Nigeria.  The characters don't know what their mission is, but quickly find Ryan's interpretation of a zombie.  A being that has an extremely high pain tolerance and the ability to move quicker than a normal human.  The description is very detailed and intense.  It is clear that Ryan has a deep knowledge of military with his descriptions.  

One of the best points of this book was the characters.  The two main characters Ryder and Turk have extremely deep personalities.  They feel very real and carry themselves with their individual characteristics throughout the entire book.  This allows much leeway in the plot line.  If the characters are this believable then the reader begins to care about them and is willing to overlook errors in thought or writing.  The entire seal team had good individual characters though I wish Ryan would have taken more time on some of the sub characters.

The story itself is pretty believable.  The story is not set too far outside of reality allowing the reader to believe what is going on.  Very few zombie plots allow the reader to believe in the possibility of the story happening in real life.  For the fear factor this is a crucial part in creating a horror and Ryan made this happen.  He describes the virus as one that we have encountered before and a doctor has mutated.  This of course has been done in real life and is usually prevalent in bio chemical warfare.

The main downfall of this book is the size.  At the end of the book Ryan considers this a novel, but only had around 20-30k words which forces the book on the border between short story and novella.  With such a short book the story could have expanded in so many areas the main one being descriptions of environment and actions taken by the main characters.  The story line was very solid, but I felt as though the book could have been made better if the author took the time to really bring the environment and events to life.  

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Writing A Book Review 10 Tips

There are a few very important things to keep in mind when writing online whether blog post, article, book review, or whatever other content you may be writing.  The most important thing is there is no perfect system.  Each writers success is not the following of a specific format, but rather finding their creative voice.  Everything you write should look good and feel right to you.  The second is writers never become big online with their first attempt at writing.  To become liked or well known write constantly.  Now on to my book reviewing tips.

Tip 1: If you want a format use the old time honored one of introduction first, content second, and ending with the conclusion.

Tip 2: When writing a review be very careful of telling to much of the story.  Any book can have the main points put down in an article with those points told the book is ruined for whoever is reading the review.  Do not give away any information important to the story line.

Tip 3: Pros and Cons.  Something I really like doing with my book reports is first telling what I enjoyed about the story and second telling what I did not enjoy.  Make sure to give specifics.  Example for this would be rather than saying the characters were static say John the main antagonist showed no creativity, force, or thought in his actions.

Tip 4: Figure out what a good story means to you.  Book reviews and in fact all literature have their quality in the perspective of the reader.  This means what you think is a terrible book someone else will think is brilliant.  Figure out your thoughts of what makes a good story.

Tip 5: Read everything and finish everything you read.  This is absolutely one of the most important aspects of writing successful reviews.  The more well read you are the better chance you stand of understanding what types of literature are well done and what types are poorly done.

Tip 6: Don't limit your writing to book reviews.  The best writers are those who write and write and write.  Practice writing prose, poetry, and researched reports.  Reading and writing go hand in hand so after you read a few books attempt to write like the authors.

Tip 7: Get ready to be hated.  Like I said previously everyone has their own idea of what is good literature and bad.  When readers strongly disagree with your thoughts they will usually let you know and not all people are able to articulate their displeasure in and intelligent fashion.

Tip 8: Read multiple review sites.  It is good to see the different ways in which you can review material.  One of my favorite types of reviews to read are the reviews on Amazon.  People get absolutely nothing for reviewing work they do it out of pure enjoyment.  There are many sites which will help you get some ideas of what criteria and presentations you can use.

Tip 9: When you figure out a format stick to it.  This is not a concrete rule, but if you find a format that your readers enjoy and you feel allows for the best review stick to it.  Be careful of straying to far from a working format.

Tip 10:  The absolutely most important factor to success is believing your words, thoughts, and actions are worthwhile.  Being successful at anything never comes with out effort and persistence.  There are a million ways to fail at what you do and only one to succeed.  You must try over and over never giving up.

Friday, July 18, 2014

First Impressions of Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky

This is the kindle version for $2.68.  If you do not want the Kindle version go to the page scroll down to the format section and pick the type you would like.  They have paperback, hardcover, and Audio formats all at very low prices.

After reading over a hundred pages the best word to describe this book is intense.  The main character is Raskolnikov a crazy individual with dark thoughts of murder.  The author plays this story out in a small town in Russia.  I found it quite difficult to keep track of where they were since the names were shown as A___ or F___.  I am not sure why the names appear this way, but this makes it very difficult to immerse yourself within the plot environment.  The writing style is also something which an average English reader may struggle with.  The writing is not bad of course just very different from English literature.

I think that Dostevsky has an amazing ability to develop characters.  The murderer in his story is extremely easy to relate to.  He creates this character to show how little difference a criminal has to the non criminals within society.  With Raskolnikov he is able to care deeply about people especially his family though shows some signs of being narcissistic.  The motives the author uses is very understandable.  The man picked his victim out of hate for the individual rather than some psychotic reason.

The plot is thick with a nice mix of action and emotion.  The author plays the story out so smoothly.  The literature has a very poetic feel and artistic use of words.  The best example that I could give of a relatable author within the English writing community would be Poe.  Dostoevsky just like Poe has the amazing ability to rip open societies hidden characteristics. After reading you have an understanding of why criminals commit crime. Their motivations differ only slightly from ours and the thought process is very minutely.  You walk in a killers shoes and you are able to relate.

Overall this book is definitely worth reading.  There is a reason that it is on most top hundred books and is considered the greatest book to come from Russia.  I believe it is truly one of the greatest books I have read and therefore I plan on reading it much more slowly than other taking my time to immerse myself in the beautiful writing.  The book is extremely cheap on both kindle and mass market paperback though I recommend getting the book in hardcover like I did.  Leaving this book out of the collection of any reader would be a travesty.  

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A Theory of Human Motivation by Abraham Maslow (Review)

You can find the book being reviewed on Amazon for $0.99.  This is the kindle version, but if you do not have a kindle amazon has a free computer app which allows you to read kindle books on your computer.

Why we do what we do has been a question from our beginning.  This book covers what Maslow believes to be the main motivations of human behavior.  This is not a book, but a paper.  In your kindle it will be around 100 pages quite small, but packed full of good information.  This is perfect for those wondering what gives them drive and why at times their motivations change.  The theories presented in this paper are put forward very clearly and in a way which is easy to understand.

The writing is at a college level so this is not for those new to reading.  I found it not as difficult as many psychology books I have read, but still somewhat advanced.  I feel that anyone who has passed high school and has read regularly will probably not struggle much with this paper.

Over all I would give the book 7/10.  The translation and editing shows a few mistakes which should have been caught before publishing.  If this was a free version of the book I would have been much more lenient, but since they are charging a dollar I expect the book without any mistakes.  Another issue I had with  this piece is the length.  The ideas discussed in this paper deserve much more time and consideration they are in fact human motivation and therefore cover a great deal.

I did really like the way Maslow left himself wiggle room.  After reading the works of Freud who would not even consider his theories as off Maslow allowed for error.  He discussed in detail that there are many contributing factors for human motivation and his theories are only the groundwork for a more extensive research.  As with most books of academic field the writing is quite bland relying completely on the subject matter for interest.  This is a book you read for the information rather than a book read for the enjoyment of reading.

I do highly recommend this book for anyone with an interest in philosophy or psychology.  This book will bring you into the field slowly not overwhelming you will ideas or jargon.

In the future:
Right now I am in the middle of reading Crime and Punishment which you can pick up for a dollar here.  Also I may be writing some short stories which I will be selling here on my blog.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Perfect Book

A book is the perception of a series of events through a writers eyes.  This being the case a perfect book can only be found through the eyes of a reader who can find no fault with the book they are reading. I personally have only had this experience a few times in my life and when I am reading through a book that I consider perfect there is no feeling in the world that is greater.

To me the perfect book must have a sensational story.  The story line I feel is the most important part of the book.  The events playing must first be understandable to the reader.  This factor alone will release many potential books because the reader must either be able to perceive the events the author puts forth or must have already experienced the events within the story line.  There are of course exceptions for authors who have the ability to take a story or event never perceived or experienced by a reader and bring forth the idea with such description and explanation the reader may live the experience through the writers words.

If the story is understandable it must next be interesting.  Again here we lose many books because everyone has a different definition of interesting.  Some simply have no interest in fiction and only find topics such as history, english, and other technical topics interesting.  There is also those who only enjoy topics of specific genres interesting such as horror, fantasy, mystery, and romance.  For me I thoroughly enjoy horror, mythology, philosophy, psychology, and other related topics.  Again there are exceptions to this rule and stories that transcend a specific genre finding interested readers across the board.

If the book has not been eliminated by the previous two factors the next thing to look at is the characters.  After reading many books I have found this is where the majority of authors struggle.  This is where understanding of the human experience comes into play.  The character must fit into societies conception of an individual.  The reader must be able to relate and understand the character.  The actions and words of the character must seem real and bring forth a dynamic personality.  For a book to be good the reader must feel something for the characters he is reading.  Usually the stronger the emotion the characters bring forth the better the book.  The feelings do not need to be happy and in fact I have found some of the best books provoke sadness, hate, and fear.

When a book can take these three things and place them in a book with quality technical writing it has the makings of a perfect book.  

Sunday, July 13, 2014

The Darkest Tool by Gerald Barnes (Review)

This is absolutely one of the best books I have read in quite some time I give it 10/10.

When I started this book I had no idea what would unravel.  It begins like so many mystery and horror books that I have read in the past, but as the plot begins to unfold the story begins bouncing between Jonathan and Arioch.  Jonathan is a normal guy who struggles with a deep darkness that he feels within himself.  Arioch is a demon and one who is very close to lucifer.  Lucifer is Jonathans father and Arioch has the job of watching over him and attempting to bring the darkness out.

The story line is split between these two, their interactions with each other, and their worlds separate.  In most cases when an author attempts to run multiple plot lines it ends up being extremely jumbled and difficult to follow.  This is not the case, Barnes seems to have a good grip on running multiple parallel plot lines.  Not once did I feel lost or like I missed an important part of the story.  The plot is somewhat slow in the first fifty or so pages, but once the normal world meets with the spiritual world the plot rages forth with unrelenting excitement. 

I felt like the writing was not exceptionally high making it good for all readers.  Unlike the majority of books I have picked up on the Kindle this one had only one mistake which was easily overlooked the rest of the book was flawless.  I felt the characters were extremely vibrant and allowed the reader to feel empathy quite quickly. 

The ending is what really blew me away.  It was an ending that one could not see coming no matter how adept or well read. The ending took an exceptional story and made it perfect.  

Monday, July 7, 2014

First Impression of "The Darkest Tool" by Gerald Barnes

Half way through this book and I wanted to give you guys my thoughts and let you purchase is if you want before the full review comes out.

The book is three dollars and only available on the kindle which you can find a link to on the side of this blog if you do not own one yet.  I highly recommend you purchase one for the simple fact that they have enough free books for the kindle to pay for it ten times over.

As of right now I am sitting about 40% the book itself is I would estimated 100k words so certainly long enough to tell a good story.  The writing is a bit simplistic lacking poetic feeling, but the content and characters pull the weight.  I find the writer very easy to read and the sub plots fascinating. The plot moves pretty quickly from the beginning, but really takes off once he switches from Jons story to Arioch.  

The main plot has the protagonist Jon who suffers from terrible nightmares.  There is around fifty pages of him growing up with hallucinations of a man who in his nightmares kills him over and over.  This makes the plot somewhat confusing until they begin to tell the story of Arioch.  Arioch is a fallen angel now demon.  The story breaks away from Jon and what he is doing and jumps into mythology/religon.  

I have found that Barnes has a very interesting take on the Christian religon.  He tells the story of the war in heaven through the eyes of the angel Arioch who has the utmost love and respect for Lucifer.  Barnes spends quite a bit of time on Arioch and his story giving the book itself so much character.  So far I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and highly recommend picking it up. 

Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe (Analysis)

Please read for free Here

There is a reason I will not review Poe and it is because he is by far the best writer I have ever read so everything reviewed would be 10/10.  In this piece Poe places the reader inside the head of an insane murderer.  It is beautiful how accurately he reveals insanity through an insane persons eyes.  The murderer is unable to even remotely consider his thoughts or actions out of the norm.  I personally have worked with the mentally ill for most of my career and have spent many hours attempting to bring someone who is in a phychosis back into reality.

The nervousness as well is done in a way that is very believable.  The repetition of ideas through speech is something that a nervous person struggles with when there thoughts refuse to slow even for a second.  They will think of many different instances which re-enforce the point they are attempting to make.

Besides the accuracy with mental disorders I feel Poe really strikes at the heart of humanity with this piece.  The Murderer does not actually want to murder, but feels an immense anger towards one part of his victims being.  There is nothing else to the victim besides that one piece which makes any possibility of remedying the situation hopeless.  The anger towards the victim is so unrealistic yet powerful.  This reminds me of reading about millions dying simply because they disagree religiously.

The constant beating of the heart both through life and death becomes a symbol of unrelenting grief.  In no part of the story is the murderer ever regretful of killing the "eye" so to speak, but the beating of the heart destroys him from the inside out.  He checks over and over therefore attempting to see if his victim did succumb to the murder.  This is also how he knew his victim died as the bed lay atop him the heart slowly ceased to beat.

As the murderer is focused from the eye to the heart he is unable to think.  In the final scene the murderer sits in place with the police thinking that they will be unable to find any remnant of his victim.  Out of nowhere he begins hearing the heart beat from a dead heart.   To me this symbolizes immense grief at destroying everything besides the eye.  His anger towards the eye was taken out not on the eye, but the entire body of the old man and because of remorse the deed he committed now haunts him in the form of a dead beating heart.

Understand that I could and probably am completely wrong.  There is absolutely no person alive that can get inside and understand Poe and his writing.  So much symbolism, metaphor, and allegory throughout all of his pieces leading to thousands upon thousands of completely different comprehensions of the pieces.  This is why I love literature there is no write or wrong only what you see and feel when you read a piece.  Expect plenty more of Poe and other great writers and poets.

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Fly and Thought Action Feeling (Poems written by myself)

The Fly

From America to Japan,
The wings slice identical air.
I have perception,
But no perspective.

I live,
But can not hope.
I see,
But can not understand.

I am important,
yet unable.

Thought Action Feeling

Thoughts, action, feeling bounce upon the wall,
seeking the ear or soul of another.

The wind blows through the room,
Nothing but myself interfering.

Knowledge to give, no one to receive,
Yet without other there is only peace.

Seeing the world die and reborn,
Feeling growth through constant suffering.

The life is over changed forever,
Though, action, feeling now received and adored.

These two feeble attempts at poetic prose is how I see the world and decide on revealing it to a reader.  I completely hate using rhymes in any sort of pattern, but rather use symbolism and metaphor heavily within and display my prose in an artful expression.  My favorite poets include Poe, Dante, and Dickinson.  I find no reason to adhere to any poetic rule for I do not write for critics, but for self. Hopefully you enjoy.  If any wish take your time to try and seek the meaning within.  It is not easily seen, but if you leave a guess in the comments I will tell you if you are correct or not.

Four Corners Dark by William Mcnally (Kindle Review)


I got this book free for my kindle: Here

My Kindle: Kindle Paperwhite, 6" High Resolution Display with Next-Gen Built-in Light, Wi-Fi

Four corners dark is a set of four horror/suspense stories written across a array of settings and plots.  The book was written by a relatively newer writer and therefore perhaps lacks some technical aspects one comes to expect from the so called greatest authors of the past.  This writing does an amazing job keeping the reader engaged.  Short stories in general must push themselves quickly in order to make the connection with the reader.  Characters can not be slowly developing as they do in many long length novels.  Mcnally ensures with all four of these short stories to plunge you into the character and plot.

The stories themselves are actually quite interesting.  Again this is where short stories struggle against full length novels.  They must put an entire story forward in a small amount of time.  This is done quite well within all the short stories and especially in one of the longer ones named The Raven Mocker.  This story actually takes up the majority of the book and lets Mcnallys story telling ability shine.  It is here that you are able to meet the supernatural events that would measure up to most supernatural stories.

The other three stories named Engine 18, Return to Nowhere, and The Spinning Wheel all have their perks, but The Raven Mocker really shines.  It is important to remember that when reading this little set of stories they are for one short stories and two from a somewhat new writer.  You can not read these expecting the life altering realizations you get from reading someone like dickens, Kant, Austen, or other novelists.  They are short little fictional horror stories written for the pure enjoyment rather than intense personal development. Simply put if you enjoy reading horror stories get this free set for your kindle.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Mans Search For Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl (Review and Analysis)

This was a squidoo lens that I created.  I used a couple of quotes from the book giving credit of course and squidoo said it was duplicate content and unpublished.

Viktor Frankl wrote this book which gave insight into life at a concentration camp. He did it in a way not to expose the travesties, but rather to explain the mental effects these travesties had on the spirit of the inmates. I will freely admit that I have read this book previously and therefore already had a good idea of how the review would go. This book is a pure masterpiece when attempting to decipher how someone going through such terrible circumstances will give up or find a reason to keep going. Like most books I have reviewed this one can be found in your local library, but I personally recommend purchasing this book for your library from amazon.

Man’s Search for Meaning is and probably will be the absolute best thing to come out of the Nazi concentration camps. The main portion of the book revolves around Frankl as he is shuttled from camp from camp. Unlike most books of the same genre Man’s Search for Meaning does much more than simply replay the events as a they happened, but rather takes you through the mental thoughts of on educated prisoner as he sees what happens to him self and other prisoners down to their core. There is of course much to learn about the physical travesties, but one is unable to understand the effects unless witnessed by someone who lived through them.

The book spans across four different camps each with their perks and downfalls. As Frankl explains in the book there is perks to be had in even the most dire places. One such example was a camp which he arrived that only housed those able to work which meant no human ovens. As the book moves along he explains in much detail the desensitization one goes though after continually watching ones friends continually beat. He also does an extraordinary job of giving us a picture that so few have and will ever witness. One of the most heart breaking things I found with the book is the prisoners death of will. This to me hit extremely hard thinking about someones ability to die simply because they could not see a reason to live. A person would be doing well, but if anything happened which disintegrated the persons meaning or will to live it was a death sentence.

The plot was broken down into three separate experiences felt by the prisoners. The first was shock which to me would be an ordinary reaction to such human degradation and suffering. The second phase which lasted after a few weeks of shock was apathy. This is explained by Frankl to be the total loss or at least the suppression of emotion from watching horrible things. He explains watching a child of 12 die and not being able to feel much of anything since it was such a common occurrence. The final experience a prisoner felt was when release though only 1 and 28 who entered the camps felt. The experience was of course debilitating and there were many issues once someone who had survived years of pure torture then having it lifted.

The final part of the book is the therapy Viktor Frankl created which was a spin off of Freuds Psychoanalysis. He called the therapy Logotherapy and takes an emphasis off of uncontrollable circumstances and more on having a man find a meaning for his own existence.



This book after reading many philosophical and psychological books is by far the best. I truly believe this book and the theories within have saved thousands if not millions of people. I can’t really say there was absolutely nothing wrong with the book since no matter what the piece is there has to be a flaw. The only two things I struggled with is the shortness of the book and some of the technical aspects of the therapy Frankl introduces. Since this review has to do with the content the book brings to the table I must say I doubt there is many life changes books like this one.

The writing is from a psychiatrist, but after reading Freuds, Jungs, and others I find it uses a language which is quite easy to understand and is readable by everyone. He does this without loosing the ability to explain any instance in a psychological and intellectual way. This is extremely rare letting the book become readable by anyone and at the same time containing the size of ideas he places within. The only part of the book an average reader would struggle with is when Frankl breaks away from his experiences and dives into the theory he has created.

One notion remains within his work and that is you can not group everyone together. Each man no matter what is his own individual. I find that he has much more room to speak than many since when discussing this thought he brings up the fact that not all SS guards were savage and their were some prisoners who were more savage than any SS guard. It may be easy to say that we should kill every nazi, but as Frankl explains not all are equal. He explains to the officers it was much easier to be cruel then to show any kindness whatsoever. He brought forth as well the fact that select prisoners had the same exact capacity to inflict any torture the people holding them captive had.

I believe that after reading this book if you haven’t yet will allow you into human nature deeper than before. There is nothing in written human history which has had the impact of the Holocaust and being led by Frankl will allow you to have an understanding which only a survivor could give. The only experience of complete destruction of liberty and dehumanization I can think of is the history of Slavery.

Below this review are Frankls words to sum up his book and I fully believe this encapsulates the ideas Frankl attempted to cover within his book.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Romeo and Juliet (Analysis)

I would give this Tragedy of Shakespeare 7/10 

Romeo and Juliet is perhaps the most well known and quoted work of Shakespeare.  Almost everyone has heard of the story, but few have read it through.  I found many misconceptions between the story I heard about and videos I watched compared to what I read.  The main story line is simple.  Two houses are at war the house of Capulet and the House of Montague.  The book begins with a fight between the two houses and the Prince getting angry at both sides threatening any who would disrupt the towns peace.  It then breaks away with Romeo who pretty much spends the entire book either in mourning or being love struck.

In the beginning Romeo is not infatuated with Juliet.  In fact he has not even laid his eyes upon her.  He is first sad that Rosaline will not be with him.  Rosaline plays no major role within the story itself, but sets the tone of Romeos passion.  He goes to a ball in the Capulets place and this is where he first meets Juliet.  They instantly fall in love of course finding no one from either house who understands the passion between them and they are constantly told to look elsewhere for love.

In one of the fights between the houses Romeo ends up killing a member of Capulet and as punishment banished.  He mourns and leaves saying over and over that death would be better than banishment.  The friar works with Juliet in a plan avoid getting married to Paris a friend of the Capulet house.  The plan is Juliet will take a potion that makes her look dead and Romeo will come and take her away.  The friar and Juliet set the plan into motion, but are unable to get the message to Romeo that Juliet is only asleep and not really dead.

Romeo hears of the death and ends up coming back.  He goes into the Capulet house where Paris is mourning for for Juliet.  They fight and Romeo kills Paris then takes a poison that kills himself.  Juliet awakes sees what has happened and kills herself to join Romeo.

I found the story line itself somewhat boring mainly since I knew it before reading it.  I do not read Shakespeare for the story I read him for the use of language.  It really does not matter what the story is if you are a lover of poetic language you will admire the way Shakespeare delivers his prose.  My favorite example of this is probably the best known part of the play and is written as follows:
(Juliet steps out on the balcony and Romeo begins speaking)
"But soft! What light through yonder window breaks?
It is the East, and Juliet is the sun!
Arise, fair sun and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief
That thou her maid art far more fair than she.
Be not her maid, since she is envious;
Her vestal livery is but sick and green,
And none but fools do wear it; cast it off.
It is my lady; O, it is my love!
O that she knew she were!"

Written by Shakespeare

This short quote when Romeo stands below and attempts to Woo Juliet is one of many amazing uses of language and poetics.  With language such as this the story will play little since the language is so incredibly strong.  Another part of Shakespeare which I absolutely adore is the dynamic characters.  Within Romeo and Juliet my absolute favorite is the Drama Queen Mercutio.  In this quote from Mercutio he is literally talking about how little the subject matters on which he is speaking.  Placing drama where none belongs and making it worthwhile is a skill few have the master of course being Shakespeare:

"True, I talk of dreams;
Which are the children of an idle brain,
Begot of nothing but vain fantasy;
Which is as thin of substance as the air,
And more inconstant than the wind, who woos
Even now the frozen bosom of the North,..."

This is what Mercutio began saying after Romeo told him what they were talking about did not matter.  He goes on for a full page of how little meaning it had blowing the conversation way out of portion. Before I close I would like to say that even though the way Shakespeare displayed content was amazing it certainly is not the best work of his which I have read.  The characters within this Tragedy were no quite believable.  I know he loves to make insane characters, but in this piece he went a little too far.  The reason for this was to prove a point that love is the most important thing that has ever been on this earth, but the way given goes a little overboard.

I hope you enjoyed this review and even though I am not sure I think my next analysis will probably be Herman Melville "Moby-Dick" or Dean Koontz "Lightning".  Thanks for reading.