The first story was a page long, and I got a penny, the second was two pages for two cents, and so on. Well, I had worked my way up to a nickel, and visions of vast riches beckoned me onward, until one of my regular customers started having nightmares, and his mother came to my mother, and that was that for the child pro. Anyway, I did continue to write all through those years in Bayonne, but I seldom completed anything, and I never showed any of my stuff to anybody.
Writing stories was just something I did to amuse myself.
Like keeping a journal. Like playing an endless solitary RISK game where every army had a commanding general and I annotated the results of every battle. Like building an entire fleet of paper airplanes and carefully documenting the performance of each in order to arrive at an optimal design.
Like breaking into the neighborhood haunted house with a couple of friends. The stories I wrote then were games, in a sense, a private amusement that I worked on until I got bored with them, after which I moved on to something else. I never really thought other people would want to read the stuff I was writing. And then came the chain letter, the sticky quarter, the fanzine. The fanzine, and the other fanzines that followed it, fascinated me.
The contents were composed in roughly equal parts of articles about Golden Age characters, most of whom had passed from the four-color scene before I was born, and amateur super hero fiction. The articles. The fiction, especially in the first few fanzines I got. The fiction was awful. I remember one writer in particular. Lots of action, no plot, and not a line of dialogue. When various fans wrote in, explaining about dialogue and suggesting that he might want to use some, he immediately took their comments to heart.
His next story was all dialogue, sort of like a play without stage directions. The truth has to be told; this man was my inspiration. They could never have inspired me to write. But this guy, he was being published! Of course, the ribbon was so faded you could hardly read it, but I made up for that by pounding the keys so hard that the letters were deeply graven into the paper. Reading the pages I produced in this fashion was quite an eyestrain, no doubt, but I guarantee that once blindness had set in, feeling the letters with your fingertips would be no problem at all.
Anyway, I sat down and I invented a superhero — just one, I figured that was smarter than introducing thirteen at once the way my role model did — and I began to write. The hardest thing was to work up the courage to send it out. Eventually I managed both though. And the story was accepted, and published, and people even wrote in and said how good it was.
I mean, I blew them away — dialogue and narration in the same story, what an innovation! They got published. They got praised. I did still more. I stayed in comics fandom all through high school.
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In some ways, it was the only thing that kept me sane in high school. Eventually I got beyond the dittoed fanzines where I started, with their fading purple print, and into the class of that subfandom, the photo-offset fanzines like Star Studded Comics. One year I even won an award for Best Fan Fiction. I know now that awards for Best Fan Fiction are like awards for Best Dwarf Basketball Player, but I was a high school kid and it meant something to me, even though I never did get the trophy I was promised.
I did get something more important. I got confidence. I got criticism. I got experience. By the time I hit college, I was corresponding with people like Howard Waldrop, who had started at Star Studded Comics just about the same time I did, and I was moving beyond superhero text stories into horror and sword and sorcery. Still bad, but better. One thing led to another. Even after reading whole sections twice and thrice, I still don't understand what he was trying to say.
For example, there is a section of the book Deepak Chopra says how we need to stop thinking of ourselves as a person p. He says when we think of ourselves as a person we see the world as ourselves and then everything else. In reality it is that everything is one. I don't understand this. How can I not be a person? How can I not have been born? It just seems so illogical, and he doesn't explain it well enough in my opinion. There were, however, many great quotes that I was able to take from this book that I would like to share with you.
Hopefully, you, the reader of my review, can connect with these quotes and take something from them. Maybe you will even appreciate them so much that you would then like to read this book also. It comes from the mind's mysterious instinct to believe that pain is good, or that it cannot be escaped, or that the person deserves it" p. But in the mindful state, time doesn't really pass at all. There is only a single instant of time that keeps renewing itself over and over with infinite variety" p.
Be sure that the external praise is sincere" p.
View all 3 comments. Apr 13, Jacqueline rated it it was amazing. This book changed my life. Deepak Chopra shows you an entirely new way of thinking and I'm so excited to read other books of his. He teaches you a new appreciation for life, different ways to turn all of the negatives into positives. His writing is very intense and I often had to go back and read sentences several times before I felt like I fully grasped the concept he was trying to make.
I definitely think this is a must read for anyone who doesn't realize their full potential. It gave me an en This book changed my life. It gave me an entirely different view on myself, the universe and everyone around me. I hope to be as wise as him one day in my writing.
Sep 27, Oswald rated it it was amazing. This is a self-help book, but it truly teaches you how to be in a perpetual positive mode.
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It teaches you how to not sweat the little things in life. These are my favorite quotes from this book: "Transformation means radical change of form, the way a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly.
In human terms, it means turning fear, aggression, doubt, insecurity, hatred, and emptiness into their opposites". If necessary, it will die to protect the body, and often does - the lifetime of any given cell is a fraction of our own lifetime. Skin cells perish by the thousands every hour, as do immune cells fighting off invading microbes.
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Selfishness is not an option, even when it comes to a cell's own survival". The primary activity of cells is giving, which maintains the integrity of all other cells. Total commitment to giving makes receiving automatic - it is the other half of a natural cycle". You can escape the trap only by ending your need to cling to these beliefs".
Samskara - "A samskara is a groove in the mind that makes thoughts flow in the same direction. Buddhist psychology makes sophisticated use of the concept by speaking of the samskara as imprints in the mind that have a life of their own. Your personal samskaras, built up from memories of the past, force you to react in the same limited way over and over, robbing you of free choice.