Posted on May 28, 2014
FOREWORD AUTHOR MIA KERICK and FAMILY at WALT DISNEY WORLD!!!
NOW ON TO THE BUSINESS AT HAND…
Yeah, I am truly honored by the fact that Michael Bowler asked me to write a foreword for his most recent addition to the EPIC Children of the Knight Series, Running Through a Dark Place. And guess what, my friends, and followers, I am going to tell you why.
1. Being asked to write a foreword, as I said above, is the HIGHEST OF HONORS. And I know for a fact that Michael Bowler loves and cherishes his Children of the Knight Series, and in particular, the characters he has so painstakingly created, as I cherish Beggars and Choosers’ Brett and Cory, The Red Sheet’s Bryan and Scott, Us Three’s Casey, Nate, and Zander, etc. As authors, we see the world through the eyes of these personalities, we live as them, we love them. We ARE them, to some extent. So, to be entrusted with the enormous responsibility to motivate readers to select Running Through a Dark Place as their reading choice, I feel as if I have been entrusted with this author’s most treasured of personal possessions: the products of his imagination.
2. BEING ASKED TO WRITING A FOREWORD MEANS I MATTER!!
I found this quotation somewhere along the research journey I took in my effort to write the best possible foreword for Running Through a Dark Place: “So, you’ve been asked to write a foreword to a book, hmm? To begin with, kudos and congratulations are in order. Forewords aren’t written by just anyone, you know. Generally, the only people who are asked to write such things are Those Who Matter.”
I will admit, reading this quotation from Muselnks Magazine suffused my entire being with warm and fuzzy feelings.
I matter. What I think as an author…well, it matters too.
People know my name. Maybe not a lot of people…(okay, and maybe they only know my pen name) but there is a sufficiently significant number of you out there who recognize the name Mia Kerick, who think pleasant and even positive thoughts when you hear that name, and your interest may even be piqued to read something that you know I wrote…or something I read and will testify to the fact that I enjoyed.
3. Being asked to write a foreword is PUBLICITY for me!! NO EXPLANATION NEEDED!!
4. And beyond these wonderful reasons, is the fact that to write a foreword for a novel that so uplifted, intrigued, and informed me, provided an opportunity to solidify my beliefs on the subject of children’s rights in the United States. Writing this foreword offered me ample opportunity to examine my beliefs on the subjects of people’s potential for personal change and the need for second chances, as well as to modify my own efforts at personal growth. Writing this foreword reminded me not only that I matter, but that I can be better.
WITHOUT FURTHER ADO, HERE IT IS… Mia Kerick, not writing in the mindset of an angsty young adult or even as an adult caught in the turmoil of personal challenges. Mia Kerick is writing as a…as…as Mia Kerick. The author…who matters.
“I wonder if what makes a family a family isn’t doing everything right all the time but, instead, giving a second chance to the people you love who do things wrong.”
I’ve always been what you might call a black and white person. As such, in my novels, the good characters are very, very good. These characters start out good, and though they may falter, in general terms, they stay good, ultimately emerging from the novel even better than ever. In the same way, my bad characters are examples of pure evil. I have created them to serve a purpose: to foil the noble decency of the “good person.”
In that same manner have I long viewed the characters in my own life story. You are my friend or you are my enemy. You are with me or you are against me. With this frame of reference, negotiating my way through a crowd of friends and neighbors becomes quite simple, and easy, too. This one-dimensional, black and white, way of viewing those who surround me, requires less thinking, less analyzing, less patience and commitment, than if I had allowed myself to see the world in shades of gray.
Since meeting Michael Bowler, the author of Running Through a Dark Place, however, I have experienced profound personal change in this restricted area of my mind. Michael Bowler, a man whose very existence defines the term humanitarian, believes that human beings are fallible, and as such, they make mistakes. And thus, human beings are entitled to second chances in life. In particular, Bowler’s unwavering commitment to the need for a second chance pertains to children. As Bowler sees it, inherent to a child’s very nature is the entitlement to make mistakes, the right to “mess up” and to be allowed another shot. In other words, the very essence of childhood nullifies a requirement for perfection.
And I assure you, in Running Through a Dark Place, Bowler’s youthful characters—his colorful Knights of the Round Table—err quite frequently. They mess up, they pay a price, and then newly enlightened adults forgive them, so that they may return to the table to try again. These children, in fact, usually do much better the second time around. Echoes of the sentiment “no matter what transpires, you must never give up on him” resonate from the lips of adults who offer second, and even third chances. The children, themselves, also acknowledge their need for multiple opportunities to get things right. One character spells it out quite clearly, saying, “I’m just a kid…who needs to figure out who he is and what his place is in this crazy world. I messed up, I know that, and I’ll do my best not to mess up again. But if I do, stick with me.”
The notion of affording second chances, however, permeates the entirety of the novel, extending well beyond the youthful characters’ needs for redemption. In Running Through a Dark Place, adults need second chances in romantic love. The corrupt mayor requires a new chance to see the light, as well as the opportunity to change his ways. A world-weary mother needs a chance to reconsider her attitude and react properly. Even the crusade around which the novel’s action revolves—the struggle by King Arthur and the youthful Knights of the Round Table to secure equality for children in an adult’s world—requires a second chance, from an unknown source, to reinvent itself after a tragic event that threatens to derail it.
Closely tied to Bowler’s belief that human beings need and deserve second chances, is his firm commitment to the notion that people are actually capable of profound change. It is an optimistic view, and when I saw evidence of it at work in Book I of this series, Children of the Knight, where insensitive cops grew big hearts and teachers who expected little to nothing of their students again became impassioned, I was at first uncomfortable and skeptical. But soon I found in my heart a growing seed of hope. In addition, the capability to change applies to former gang members, worthless societal burdens in the eyes of many. “I never had no real choices,” one teenaged gang member said, “not till this man came along and showed me how to be good, how to be a man, how to make a difference for other people.” In Bowler’s eyes, if you possess a soul, you possess the necessary means to change. To see the light. To make good use of that second chance you have been so graciously granted.
By virtue of its very title, Running Through a Dark Place is a testament to change and second chances. The process of growing and changing and finding oneself can be dark and terrifying. It holds potential to make a human being feel as if he is scrambling—terrified and alone— through a dimly lit city street, in fear of his life. But Bowler understands that when you have successfully run through the dark place, having been given as many chances as you need to arrive at the light on the other side, you will acquire redemption. You will find what is right.
In conclusion, since familiarizing myself with Michael Bowler the author, as well as Michael Bowler, the person—the selfless volunteer, the man of faith, the committed friend, the unquestionable humanitarian—my world view has changed radically. Or rather, my view of my brothers and sisters, who are struggling to achieve their second chances and find the path to virtue right along beside me, has been forever altered. My mind has been opened to the possibility that, given the faith and the opportunity, even those I considered my enemies, can become my truest friends.
The novel Running Through a Dark Place has been instrumental in this profound change in me. In it I saw well-defined examples of people taking advantage of second chances. I saw tangible proof that people can change.
Through my connection with Michael Bowler, I have come to believe that today is my second chance to make my own personal change in how I live my life.
I will take this chance.
Young Adult Author
Intervention, Not Broken, Just Bent, The Red Sheet, Us Three
Mia with the Minions
Posted on May 17, 2014
Intervention is a finalist for an Eric Hoffer award. (http://www.hofferaward.com/HAcategoryfinalists.html#.U3etrLkU_4g)
For those who played along on the hide and find image in the Newsletter, the answer was A Package Deal. The image below is the answers to the puzzle…
Now for the winner of Mia Kerick’s Newsletter:
Drum Roll Please:
The winner is
To signup to receive Mia’s Kerick’s once a month Newsletter you can sign up here: http://eepurl.com/TLcDb
Now for some logistical things….
As of today any past posts that have been release will unpublished temporarily until they are logistically cleared to be viewed.
Thank you for stopping by and reading this post.
Posted on May 16, 2014
Congrats to Lee Todd for winning the Bear and Book prize for just making this comment on Mia’s interview with the sociopathic character from Michael Bowler’s Running Through a Dark Place, Michael:
Here is what Lee will win:
Please contact me with your address, Lee!!!
Posted on May 14, 2014
“If I cannot inspire love, I will cause fear.” – the monster to Victor in Frankenstein
Interview with Michael, newest member of Arthur’s Round Table in
“Running Through A Dark Place.”
I am not what you would call an experienced journalist, but occasionally I pin my press ID card to my lapel and head in into the trenches to conduct an interview of a fictional character who intrigued me in some way or another. The character I interviewed yesterday, Michael (refused to give his last name) of Running Through a Dark Place, indeed, had a significant impact on me as I read book 2 in Michael Bowler’s Children of the Knight series.
What sort of an impression did he leave on my mind…on my heart? I will allow you to draw your own conclusions as you read our interaction, but I will say that Michael is what I would refer to as something of a shock jock. The vast majority of the words that spout forth from his mouth are deliberately designed to offend. To throw other characters off-balance. To hide the fragile soul that I feel certain lurks within his brawny body. To stave off any remote possibility of forming an emotional bond with anyone.
With his goal of provoking negative attention, Michael is a resounding success. He succeeds in alienating his co-characters in Running Through a Dark Place. And in our brief interview, he was somehow able to hone in on my areas of deepest sensitivity, and offend me.
Do I like Michael? Read these exchanges from Mia Kerick’s interview with Michael, conducted in the back yard of the author’s home in Los Angeles, and draw your own conclusions as to whether or not it is even possible to like him, let alone give him the benefit of the doubt.
Mia: Hi, Michael.
Mia: I’m glad you came. I’m actually very curious about that. The kids who told me you were… well, I won’t say exactly what they said… that you were ‘interesting,’ let’s just say, told me you’d never show. So why did you?
Michael: Needed to see your face.
Michael: And nothing. Just wanted to know who to fuck up if this interview makes me look bad or brings me attention I don’t want.
Mia: (shivers, even though it’s warm outside) Um. Okay. I, uh, I’d like to ask you a few questions about your childhood and family.
Michael: (glowers menacingly) No can do. I don’t talk about my childhood, and my family are assholes. All you need to know, lady.
Mia: Are you the only child in your family?
Michael: You got that one right.
Mia: And I was told you are seventeen years old?
Michael: (smirks) What’s it to you? Looking for some action from a young stud? Hubby not satisfying you these days?
Mia: (fidgets uncomfortably) I’ll put you down as seventeen.
Michael: Whatever. I’m old enough.
Mia: Tell me about your parents.
Michael: (smirks again) You think I’m hot, don’t you, lady?
Mia: I think you’re a very handsome boy.
Michael: (laughs) In other words, you’re hot for me, like everyone else.
Mia: (tries not to let the tremble in her hand be visible) Um, back to your parents. Give me three words to describe them.
Michael: Scared to death.
Mia: Why? Are you scared of them?
Michael: (snorts derisively) Other way around, lady. They know if they cross me I’ll cut their throats while they sleep. Ha! That’s why they never let me into the main house unless their live-in bodyguard is present. (laughs) Like I couldn’t fuck the shit out of him if I wanted to. Long as I have my bank account and my car, I stay away from them and they stay away from me. Oh, and if I see you put in your story what I said about cutting their throats, I’ll be paying you a little visit in the dead of night. (grins)
Mia: (shifts again, tries to maintain eye contact, but finds it’s difficult with his penetrating glare) I think they might, uh, also, you know, be scared of you for a different reason. Want to know what I think that reason is?
Michael: (squints) Lady, you’re treading on some very dangerous ground here.
Mia: (takes a breath and pushes on) I think they know that you know they haven’t done a good job as parents.
Michael: (sneers) Who are you, Dr. Fucking Phil?
Mia: (laughs) That’s funny.
Michael: Man, lady, if you don’t say something smart soon, I’m gone.
Mia: Okay. How’s this? Do you believe in God?
Michael: (looks surprised at the question) Why should I? He doesn’t believe in me.
Mia: Do you believe what goes around comes around?
Michael: Now that you have right. It’s the way the world works. The only way. That’s justice. Forgiveness is for pussies.
Mia: (squirms at the intensity of his answer, the near anger in his voice) Okay, let’s switch topics here. What are you most proud of?
Michael: (almost visibly relaxes. Slightly) That I’m the smartest kid in this city.
Mia: Really? How do you know that?
Michael: I just do. Put anyone in this city against me in any subject and I’ll wipe the floor with them. College kids too. Shit, I had to teach my calculus class half the time because the dumbass teacher couldn’t even figure out how to solve differential equations. Shit, a fucking first grader could learn that if he was smart like me.
Mia: (jots down his response to compose herself) How about this – do you believe in love at first sight?
Michael: (another derisive snort) Love is a fallacy. There’s only hedonistic lust and animal attraction. Chemical reactions of the physical body. Nothing more, nothing less.
Mia: Does a kiss fall under the category of hedonistic lust?
Michael: (grins) You want to kiss me, don’t you? I can see your eyes checking out my pecs and arms. You want me.
Mia: (uncomfortable) You do have… quite an admirable physique. For a boy.
(Michael’s face clouds over at the use of the word “boy, “ but he doesn’t say anything.)
Mia: Why do you work out so much?
Michael: So no one will fuck with me.
Mia: (nods) How about this – if you’re driving in the middle of the night and there’s no traffic, do you stop at red lights?
Michael: (laughs) Lady, I barely stop at red lights during the day, and then only if there’s a cop or red light camera around.
Mia: You’re a risk taker then?
Michael: (shrugs) Life is risk. No one is safe. Especially kids.
Mia: (eyes him thoughtfully, searching his face for the meaning behind those words, but Michael says nothing and just stares) Do you have any regrets in life so far?
Michael: None. Regrets are for pussies, just like forgiveness. You do what you have to do and move on. Never look back. That’s my motto.
Mia: Interesting philosophy. So if you were to die tomorrow, how would you like to be remembered?
Michael: As a kid who wouldn’t take shit from anyone. As a kid who had control of everyone and everything around him. As a kid who took care of business.
Mia: And if you were to die tomorrow and you could hold on to one memory from your life for all eternity, what would it be?
Michael: (deflates slightly, suddenly appearing more like a boy than ever during the interview; his face takes on a faraway expression; he sighs ever so slightly) Lance.
Mia: (reacts with surprise at the change in tone, and because of the answer) I, uh, I interviewed Lance shortly after the crusade kicked into gear. You know, before… well, everything happened. Is Lance why you joined Arthur’s Round Table?
Michael: (the cold, tough veneer is back in an instant; he sits up straight and glares at her) I didn’t join shit! I merely offered my intellect to help them write their proposition. Hell if anyone else could’ve done it. They need me, lady. I don’t need them.
Mia: (shifts again, looks eager to leave) Well, uh, Michael, I think that’s probably all I need. Before we go our separate ways, is there anything I didn’t ask that you wanted me to?
Michael: Yeah, about my favorite book.
Mia: (caught off guard again) Oh. So what is your favorite book?
Mia: (eyebrows shoot up in surprise) Like from the movies?
Michael: (looks angry) The movies are shit. The book is fucking genius. Mary Shelley was way ahead of her time. She had us pegged perfectly. Human nature, I mean. Read it some day. Then you won’t need to ask about my life because you’ll find all the answers right there in that book.
Mia: (nods, watching him settle himself back into his standard sullen demeanor) Do you, uh, have any questions for me?
Michael: No. Just a warning.
Michael: I’ve seen you playing with that phone the whole time. I better not see any pictures of me anywhere other than that one ‘model’ shot I said you could use. (smiles in a threatening way) See, I don’t like people taking my picture without permission. People who do that have been known to get badly fucked up. Are we clear?
Mia: (swallows nervously, and nods again) Crystal.
Michael: (smiles for real this time, the smile of someone who knows he’s in command) Later, lady. I have a party to grace, and every party without me is a loser.
(He stands and heads for the back gate leading to the driveway.)
Mia: Let’s chat again sometime, Michael.
Michael: (without turning back, just throws a hand up) When hell freezes over.
(Then he’s out the gate and out of Mia’s life)
Mia: (sinks down into her chair, her heart pounding, sweat on her forehead, relief flooding in on her) Well, that’s an unspeakably angry child. He needs a hug. (shivers) But not from me.
(Mia collects her things and returns to the house to bid the author goodbye.)
So, we return to my original question: Do I like Michael? I will admit that I tried. He is beautiful, but very damaged, brilliant, yet his mind is profoundly warped, full of youthful passion, yet bitterly wise beyond his years. Am I entertained by his provocations? Impressed by his banter? Fascinated by his off-color charm?
An honest answer to my final question, directed at Mia Kerick, myself:
Do I like Michael?
I honestly don’t know.
Will you like Michael or will you hate him?
You will need to read Running Through a Dark Place to find out.
Buy it on Amazon:
King Arthur and his extraordinary young Knights used ‘might’ for ‘right’ to create a new Camelot in the City of Angels. They rallied the populace around their cause, while simultaneously putting the detached politicians in check. But now they must move forward to even greater heights, despite what appears to be an insurmountable tragedy.
Their new goal is lofty: give equality to kids fourteen and older who are presently considered adults only when they break the law. Arthur’s crusade seeks to give them real rights such as voting, driving, trading high school for work, and sitting as jurors for their peers charged with criminal behavior.
Understanding that the adults of California will likely be against them, Arthur and his Knights must determine how best to win them over.
However, before the king can even contemplate these matters, he finds himself face to face with an ally from the past, one who proves that everything isn’t always what it seems – even life and death.
The Knight Cycle Continues…
If you haven’t yet experienced The Knight Cycle, start here where it all began. This is an epic five-part series filled with triumph, tragedy, exhilarating emotion, despair, joy, laughter, tears, high action, and adventure, populated with a colorful cast of diverse characters you’ll not meet anywhere else. Watch Arthur’s youthful Knights come of age, and transform America along the way.
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Posted on May 2, 2014
April has been a busy month with the release of my eighth book, Us Three and almost month long tour.
In other news I am in the process of writing the sequel to Us Three called One Voice. Setting is when Zander and Casey are in college while Nate is still at home keeping an eye on his younger sister and missing his other two thirds. That is the only teaser I am giving for the time being.
I want to thank you for signing up for my eNewsletter.
Now you are wondering what about a contest, well thanks to my assistant Beckey, she came up with an interesting fun twist for this month’s contest.
There is 7 of my books hidden in this image, can you find which book is not in the image.
Go to the rafter and enter your answer for a chance to win a Mia Kerick eBook.
(Contest ends on May 15th)
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