Literacy; reading ability, learning and knowledge. Literacy gives people the power to choose their destiny. Options are limited without it. When you can, encourage reading. Buy books, read to your children, read to new immigrants, write books and read diversely. What better way to encourage literacy than buying someone a book for Christmas? If you want to buy for a reader who wants a good laugh and an easy read, I recommend Lynn Santer’s Just What the Doctor Ordered – Heart Warming Stories to Make Your Patient Smile (Vol. One).It’s a bit cheeky and for adults only. If this compilation of stories from all sorts of writers doesn’t tickle your funny bone, I don’t think you have one. I have contributed two chapters in the book. I’m sure all writers involved will agree that it was a fun project to write for. Get in quick to get your copy before Christmas. Click on the book link or here.
If you’re looking for an escape read, for that tropical summer holiday, then The Zanzibar Moon is your perfect pick. Targeted at the women’s contemporary fiction market, it’s a pleasant surprise for male readers, who will enjoy the action-packed African setting and the steamy sex scenes as well. Take yourself to a faraway exotic place with a true hero. You can buyThe Zanzibar Moonthrough this website on the bookstore page or click on the book link. You can also use the contact page to request author signed copies. Again, get in quick if you want your copy by Christmas. Love, Books and Reading, Donna
I finished ‘Unmasked’ by Turia Pitt and Bryce Corbett (336 pages), between writing and other jobs. I couldn’t put it down (but of course I had to or I wouldn’t have met my own deadlines).
From the first chapter, I shed tears. They stayed throughout, but mixed with smiles, chuckles and ‘wow’ moments.
My husband commented, “Are you still crying?” I was up to chapter twelve and had a box of tissues next to me, my head in the book.
This is an inspirational read; not only because of what happened to Turia, but what she did about it. It’s not just about Turia. The people around her show wonderful human spirit and love, particularly her fiancé Michael. Inspiring love flow through the pages.
Have a sense of humour
Turia has a wicked sense of humour and undeniable courage. She probably would have been a motivator, even if the fire didn’t happen to her. Her voice is loud but her physical achievements are thunderous. How many people take on Ironman events, the Kokoda Track, support charities (she did this before the fire), empower other people and live a humble (if not selfie-filled, ha ha) life? See her Instagram account.
Turia is spurred on by those who say she can’t do something. Doctors told her she’d struggle to walk; now she runs, swims, rides and climbs (and not slowly either). It made me realise how insignificant my own struggles were. I have no excuse not to exercise. I cannot complain when I feel pain (arthritis perhaps) in my knees, elbows, shoulders and neck. I will soldier on because I’m very grateful to still be fit and healthy. If I don’t keep moving I may not stay that way. I will stick it out because Turia’s voice is in my ear.
It’s not just a physical lesson
I didn’t just learn a physical lesson. I think the main thing is about our mind and how we use it. Turia breaks things up until she achieves them, be it physical or mental. I’ve always fragmented my writing projects into, words, scenes, chapters, then they become full manuscripts.
With multiple projects on the go it was getting to a point, I thought completing them was pushing my limits. Then I read Turia’s book and I had a light-bulb moment. Keep doing what you originally did; break it up. Finish the first bit, then the second and so on. I’m back to a flow of 3,000 words a day. I’m back on track. Mentally I’m in the writing zone. It’s not the same as an athlete’s zone but it works for me.
We can all be better people.
Turia is proof. She chose not to be bitter and angry; instead to live a full and meaningful life. We would forgive her for the first (considering what she’s been through) but that wouldn’t have been Turia, the person.
As an individual, I choose to be the best I can be. That’s all we need to be. We compete with ourselves. We run our own race. Be proud of what you are doing. If you’re not proud of what you are doing change it. It’s also advisable to keep supporters by your side. The people who love you will cheer you on like no one else. Just like Michael is always the first to greet Turia at her finish lines.
I’d also like to say what an excellent job John Corbett, Turia’s ghost writer, has done to pull the story together. I loved the chapters from the viewpoint of each of Turia’s loved ones. To say I had my heart in my throat, is an understatement. He brought the personal emotions to the surface and made Turia’s tale captivating, engaging and un-put-downable. (Lots of applause going off in the background).