The importance of context

One thing writers do a lot is read. I write crime novels but I don’t limit my reading to that genre. This week I finished the first draft of The Holiday, the second Inspector West novel, and rewarded myself by rereading The Age of the Unthinkable by Joshua Cooper Ramo.

This is one of those ‘wake up call’ books that challenges the way we look at the world, especially in the arena of foreign affairs, that the ‘High King’ and his advisors should have on their reading list – even though it was published in 2009. Continue reading “The importance of context”

The Office of High King

I’ve been in New York for the last couple of months working on my next book, listening to public radio and reading the occasional edition of the New York Times.

America is an interesting place, and the commentary on things going on in the political sphere got me thinking about another time and place: Ireland, ‘the land of the kings’, in the times of Brian Boru, who is regarded as the last High King of Ireland. Continue reading “The Office of High King”

Special Roles

Some of us are ‘special’

In our world, people are rewarded for the roles they play, and we treat some roles as being more important, special or of a higher value. The chief executive officer (CEO) role, for example, is seen as a more important role, one that makes a more valuable contribution to the success of the company than, say the role of the mailroom clerk, who only ensures that incoming mail is delivered to the correct inbox and that outgoing mail makes it into the postal system. Consequently, the CEO is paid several multiples of what the mailroom clerk is paid – in some cases 100’s of times more. Continue reading “Special Roles”

Time travelling

The other night I was browsing the topics being discussed in the ‘Philosophy of the mind’ community on Google+ and joined in a conversation on whether we’d ever be able to build a super computer for time travel. The next morning James Altucher’s newsletter was on time travel.

Why is it that some of us seem to be obsessed with the idea of time travel, wanting to either go back in time or catapult ourselves into the future? And, why do we think we need a machine to do it? Continue reading “Time travelling”

Opinions – we all have them.

There’s nothing wrong with having an opinion, as long as you understand that it’s just how you see it. The danger with opinions arises when you think your’s is the truth or when you believe someone else’s is the truth or holds more value than your own.

When you mistake your opinion for the truth you are closing your mind to other possibilities. Continue reading “Opinions – we all have them.”

Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is a lot of fun. It allows you the opportunity to give your friend/lover/spouse a cheeky card and an extravagant or ridiculous gift – depending on your sense of humour.

It’s a moment to pause and remind yourself why you have or want that special person in your life. It’s also an opportunity to say those magic words: ‘I love you.’ Continue reading “Valentine’s Day”

Running on empty

We all know what happens to a machine when you forget to refill the fuel tank or to a smartphone if you forget to recharge the battery: it stops working.

Yet how many of us insist on pushing on when the tank is empty or the batteries are flat? You know what I mean. You get up each day and just keep going despite the fact that you come home exhausted at the end of the day. And how well do you relate to those you claim you love when you are in that state? Continue reading “Running on empty”

The power of words

This week I spotted a book on a friend’s bookshelf, not one of those online bookshelves like on GoodReads but one with actual books on it. The book was: Crones don’t whine by Jean Shinoda Bolen.

Reading the book reminded me of the first time I had come across the term ‘crone’. It was when I was doing some Celtic Studies and learnt about the three faces of the feminine: the maiden, the mother and the crone.Those three faces also reflect the three obvious phases of growth: youth, maturity and old age. Continue reading “The power of words”

The Good Life Project

The Good Life Project, presented by Jonathan Fields, provides insight into how other people live their lives. The weekly videos are always interesting and offer perspectives you may not have considered. I enjoy them.

This week Jonathan provided a jam session on: How do you handle naysayers? Continue reading “The Good Life Project”

Hell – hot or cold?

For those of us living in Southern Australia, the traditional biblical picture of hell has been a living reality this last week.

We have endured five days straight of 42 degrees C plus ( that’s around 108 F plus for those living in the non-metric world) daytime temperatures, fanned by hot northerly winds, and very warm nights. Continue reading “Hell – hot or cold?”