Everything is permitted when we are creative… Part 4

‘Be aware of how much can you accomplish… you will realize that you have been a stranger to yourself the whole time’

How do you think that sounds?

Why not? You already have a pen…

By a simple idea you can make our hearts flutter…

A whole new meaning for the phrase ‘Honey kisses’

Even though created momentarily, its effect is grand…

After all, they are only there when the sun wants them out, so why not dressing them up?

It won’t be associated with danger anymore…

You have a flashlight and you have a creative mind… make our jaws drop.

Your art can make us more responsible.

A camera, your friends and your imagination… that’s all you needed all along.

 

“The greatest masterpieces were once only pigments on a palette.” ~ Henry S. Hoskins

 

 

 

 

My ongoing journey as a writer…

My works are not the results of the last 5 years, they are the result of my entire life, starting from my childhood. I attended with my body every day in our world, but my mind was suspended in its place between many. Starting school exactly after the Iraqi war with Kuwait was over made me one of the most unpopular kids in my classes. The sure result was isolation. I created my own corner, and it grew bigger, opening the doors for many other fantasies and new characters, personas that shaped me within time. The only person who made my life easier was my older brother who never stopped being there for me when things get rough, which is why I created the main character in his honor.

My isolation and imagination was the conditioner for the fragment of the art’s soul lying within me, it made me become what I am right now, that fragment was bound to grow in the direction it did right now because it had me as the catalyst. My first time to unleash it was in my university years in Emirates (which is one of the locations in my novel). I met my best friends over there who introduced me to their own fragments, we connected those pieces together and ended up with an idea for a movie.

I started finally when I was on my own after I changed my major and decided to change my university. During that time, I took the liberty to share and place my ideas on paper instead of just having them pass by on my mind. The first idea was ‘Psychs’, it grew too much until eventually it possessed me and made me talk about her. Two days later, my friend called me, asking about my idea while he was inside a DVD store, he thought it was a movie. And thus the path was clearer in my journey, and I didn’t waste anytime walking through it.

My publishing experience had a disastrous start which will lead me eventually to experience. I thought that all you needed was a print house and that’s it… right?… Wrong. I found one and ended up with a thousand copy of my book but, and here’s the kicker, with no real ISBN number. So imagine how hard it was to convince bookstores to place my book in them. I succeeded eventually in Kuwait, they were really nice with me and thanks to them, my novel became a bestseller over there. It was a small victory but it felt big. I started with a new publishing house now, AuthorHouse (Parent company is Penguin) and I have never felt more comfortable. They are really professionals and thanks to them, my book can be obtained worldwide. And the latest news was the Kirkus review, but I will share that later in the near future.

This is a picture of my desk… It soothes me whenever I sit there.

So… since I shared my real story of how I became a writer, I would like to share what I wrote with you all.

Psychs is all about fusing reality with fantasy… sound’s familiar? I guess I couldn’t avoid using that clay of my life in the novel. My center was Hassan, my main character and my tribute to my older brother, I thought of him and then the story sprang. He’s someone with eight spirits connected to him by one fateful event. Those spirits will soon become his teachers and give him their knowledge so he can be able to lead another life, where he gets to use his gift and their knowledge for good.

Here’s a pre-publication video of me talking about my novel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bhMMxhb2ZI

And here’s the novel’s cool widget: http://book2look.com/vBook.aspx?id=BYOlb1oXNc

I decided to write this post as my way to share my experience and to raise the curiosity of other authors and avid readers to ask questions. I was always on the lookout for author’s stories, and I loved it when I see how alike we sometimes are.

I would love to answer questions from readers, bloggers and authors. You may end up learning something or better yet, teaching me too. I’m not too proud to not admit that.

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OH MY GOD…. I’m so happy I could faint right in the middle of this po…………….

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……………………..Wh………….. What happened…. I remember there was an e-mail from my publisher and…. Oh, right.

I have posted last week about how stressful my upcoming week would be not only because of my academic status, but also because of my other life, my life as an author.

My publisher informed me last week that my book ‘Psychs‘ is being reviewed by Kirkus and they will send me the review to have a look at before they place it on their website. I was so frightened that I forwarded it to my young brother and asked him to tell me if it’s good or not.
His reply gave me the courage to open the file myself… I’m so happy right now, the words that should describe me have yet to be discovered.

I can post the review here, but I’d rather link you to their website once it’s out there.

Thank you everyone for your kind thoughts and big boost, I couldn’t have done it without you.

Best wishes for you and all your beloved ones.

~ A. H. Amin

Why did I decide to make a Q & A session this Saturday?

My dear followers and bloggers,

Last week I announced that on the 10th of November (This Saturday) I will be hosting a Q & A session as a way to stretch the knowledge of my novel and works to reach a wider audience.  But the truth is it’s more than that. The idea came to me long ago after I was invited for a book discussion with the Kuwaity Book club. It was a very productive process and you have no idea how fun it was, to be able to know more about the author and about your readers, firing questions about my book, about my life, about my current relationship, and I talked about how I was able to publish the book and what mistakes have I done along the way.

So, today I want to explain the purpose of the upcoming session to all the avid readers, the curios bloggers and to the fans who already read or still reading my book.

Here are the ten reasons why I decided to host a Q & A session:-

1- Get readers to know more about my fiction thriller.

The obvious is the first to be mentioned… readers would like to know what they are getting involved with before they start asking questions. That simple. I will talk about the book and mention more of it with everyone to help generate questions… after all, that is why I am doing the session.

2- To get to know the author by asking about his personal life.

I’m an avid reader myself, and what every reader share is the curiosity of the man or woman behind the work. Every time I read a book I always go through the biography. The more personal information I learn, the closer I feel to that person and his/her work. It’s a very good way to become connected with the readers and the authors, so it’s something I really look forward too in the session.

3- Share my publishing and marketing experiences.

If there is anything I wished for more often it would be to have someone to tell me what to do. You can never have enough routes to take when it comes to dealing with your writing, publication and marketing. And who knows, I may end up learning something new too, after all, we are here to share our experiences, and mine is only 1 year old.

4- What did I do and what obstacles did I encounter.

I mentioned that the paperback copy of my book became a bestseller in Kuwait, but what I didn’t mention was the biggest mistake I did with that old edition published in April, and most importantly,how did I flipped that into something good?

5- How did I start?

Every author had that moment where she/he realized that this is worth the effort. This Saturday I will share the story of what made me become confident enough to know that my art is something worth fighting for.

6- A chance to know my future in writing.

I write more than one genre, and I also believe that there’s no pure genre for a book because they have to be compatible with all readers if it wants to be held more often. I want to share the future works where I will talk about the second book in the series with my fans and readers and discuss my spiritual and inspirational novel which is based on an event that occurred in South  Africa in 1928.

7- A chance to learn what readers want.

An author’s greatest strength is knowing what the audience want. I hope I’d find out directly or indirectly through the questions.

8- Two major events are on the way.

I mentioned that there are two major and crucial reviews are coming on the way, the first is a Kirkus review which as I understand from my publisher would be during this month, the other is from CBC. I’m not sure honestly how well they will work out, but either way, I thought it should be important to make my book familiar before those two reviews are out, so readers would know that the reviews are aimed at the story they heard and asked about.

9- I have been away for too long.

I am in my last term in my university so most of my writing energy is being coursed somewhere else, so it would be nice to talk about the book, especially since I’ll be starting to write the third book in the series which I have not gave a title for… until last month, and you will get to learn the title’s name by Saturday.

10- This is the juicy one…

I plan to place the first 20 readers on my blog on a list, and when the time comes, those lucky 20 will get to be one of the people who own the first edition of ‘The Remnant’, the second book in Psychs series.

So I hope you’ll get excited enough to get involved with my series. We can sit down, have a cup of coffee while we chat in the comment box. You may like what you’ll learn.

To give you a little sip from my novel’s cup here is a pre-publication video of me talking about my thriller, I hope you’ll find it to be your cup of tea:-

Here’s my widget, you’ll find more information and an online sample chapter over there.

Psychs Widget

Thank you everyone and I hope to see you soon on Saturday.

~ A. H. Amin

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A new award for my blog… (7 things about me shared)

I’d like to thank Margaret E. Alexander for her nomination, she’s the author of the upcoming novel, Shadow of Penumbra, I really appreciate your acknowledgement for my writing and I can’t wait to have my hands on your book in December.

The rules of acceptance:-

  1. Thank the award giver.

  2. Post the award on your blog.

  3. Share 7 things about yourself.

  4. Pass it on!

Item one and two are covered, so now we move on to 7 things about me… well:-

1- I recently started doing Yoga, it’s more tiresome than jogging.

2- I wish to collaborate with another author to create a book.

3- My greatest dream is to have a production company.

4- I believe that women require 30 minutes start when shopping before they start to like what they see.

5- I wish to take over after a dead author sometimes, Like Agatha Christie… I would love to write a new Poirot novel.

6- Cheese is my Kryptonite.

7- (The juicy one is for last) Even though I’m a guy, I sometimes enjoy chick-lit movies.

Here are the wonderful people I would like to thank for making my blogging days worth while:-

– Drop by here and have a tea with this pirate, an adventurer and a very talented writer, a magician with words: http://managuagunntoday.wordpress.com/

– An avid reader with great passion for books, she’s too awesome and a big supporter of newly established authors: http://kelseyketch.com/

– Here’s a great model to follow, she did not let her cerebral palsy stop her from doing what she wants, a painter and the author of I Win, a biography that should inspire us: http://wincharles.wordpress.com/

– A very sweet and lovely blogger who shares her experiences and support for everyone who are in the shade and need to be re-coursed back to light: http://depressionexists.com/about/

– A very talented and creative writer. I’m waiting for the day where she announces the release of her book: http://ramblingsofanaspiringwriter.wordpress.com/

I would like to say to the other blogs I follow that I also appreciate your blogs and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for you all.

Best wishes for you and all your beloved ones.

~ A. H. Amin

Some stories are meant to happen

 

Today’s date brought back some great memories of one of my favorite movies of all time,’ V For Vendetta’, a dystopian thriller by James McTeigue, it was based on one of the greatest works by Alan Moore and David Lloyd. The reason why I love that movie is not only because it has one of the greatest dialogues, characters and storyline, but because the element and the hidden item they placed inside the movie made me realize that this story was destined to be created. The element is… the V letter.

The use of the letter V in that movie was both prominent and concealed at the same time. An example of the former is when the main character ‘V’ introduced himself to ‘Evey’, another protagonist in the movie, this is what he said:

Voilà! In view, a humble vaudevillian veteran, cast vicariously as both victim and villian by the vicissitudes of Fate. This visage, no mere veneer of vanity, is a vestige of the vox populi, now vacant, vanished. However, this valorous visitation of a by-gone vexation, stands vivified and has vowed to vanquish these venal and virulent vermin vanguarding vice and vouchsafing the violently vicious and voracious violation of volition. The only verdict is vengence; a vendetta, held as a votive, not in vain, for the value and veracity of such shall one day vindicate the vigilant and the virtuous. Verily, this vichyssoise of verbiage veers most verbose, so let me simply add that it is my very good honor to meet you and you may call me V.’

It’s like English and terms existed for that movie. When he asks for Evey’s name, he pauses and say’E… V’, E being the fifth letter in the alphabet, and we all know what’s the Roman number for five, (V), and also… V. The lastly mentioned was something hidden.

I started to notice every ‘V’ related items in the movie and I loved how the writer had connected them skillfully in the story. There’s a scene I remember that made me the only one in the cinema theater to laugh, because I was the only one who understood it, I play the piano and there’s a scene in the movie where ‘V’ sneaks on a man who was listening to music, the background music played Beethoven’s 5th symphony, 5th… ‘Roman V’.

The quote in ‘V’s’ mirror, ‘Vi Veri Vniversum Vivus Vici’  are formed of Five V words, and the word Vniversum is actually written with a U, but even though, it was written with the letter ‘V’ because in old Latin, the letter “U” was written as a “V.” I just discovered this fact recently. There are a lot of ‘V’ hidden items but I don’t want to spoil the movie for anyone. You can visit here if you have seen the movie and be amazed .

Some people have that moment when creating art, realizing that what’s around us was made for what we create, you just have to look carefully until eventually you start to see the thin threads that tie them together, and eventually you’ll end up with a masterpiece.

One of my favorite quotes in the movie

It took a natural disaster to make me curious…

 

We have seen them on the news and we have seen them in movies so many times… hurricanes. Even though they are misfortune in a very bad disguise, they are still marvelous wonders. I had to know how? And Why?… How they happen and why the girls names? So I went into a little dive in the world web to find my Rosetta Stone and stumbled upon some amazing facts which left me in ‘Oh’.

Before I dig into the more scientific details (which are magnificent) I’d like to share a fun fact first, the reason why they have names. It was all because of one certain meteorologist called Clement Wragge, this Australian scientist is credited for giving women names for storms, and not any names, he gives the names of the women he hated. He made a list, organized them alphabetically and then gave names for each hurricane in order (you got to admire the efforts he made to make sure the names of the women he hated will always be associated with a natural disaster). The idea never really caught on (hmmm, I wonder why?). But it was revived in the 1940s by the American Weather Bureau.

Pop quiz… have you ever heard about hurricanes hitting… let’s say, Alaska or the South Pole?

As close to reality Hollywood can be, the answer is no. That’s because hurricanes develop in warm, tropical regions. Most Atlantic hurricanes begin off the west coast of Africa, starting as thunderstorms that move out over the warm, tropical ocean waters.­

Now is the time for the magician to reveal the secret, how it was possible to happen. Storms begin their lives as clusters of clouds and thunderstorms called tropical disturbances. Most of these disturbances die out, but a few, well they keep going further. In these cases, the thunderstorms in the disturbance release latent heat from the accumulated pressure, which warms areas in the disturbance. This causes the air density inside the disturbance to lower, dropping the surface pressure. Wind speeds increase as cooler air rushes underneath the rising warm air. The incoming winds bring in more moisture, which condenses to form more cloud activity and releases latent heat in the process.

There’s one last thing, the big one, Why they spin?

Well, let’s say you have a plane and you know how to fly and you decided to go from north to south, not only it will be a cool thing to do, but if you draw your line of movement on a map, you’ll find it curved, it sounds unbelievable if it wasn’t for one fact, our planet rotates. This is called the Coriolis force, a natural phenomenon that causes fluids and free-moving objects to veer to the right of their destination in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere. They say that within five degrees of the equator; the Coriolis force is too weak there to help form hurricanes. I’ll try to remember to go there in case one of Clement’s ex’s wanted to drop her fury on us.

My thoughts and prayers to everyone who suffered hurricane sandy’s wrath.

Source: How Stuff Works

This is an incredibly detailed review of ‘Psychs’ on Gabina49’s blog.

This is an incredibly detailed review of ‘Psychs‘ on Gabina49’s blog.

Gabina49's Blog

Psychs: Ahmed Al-Amin

 Entities all around him entering his space, his mind and every being creating events that either did happen or maybe he imagined it all. Hassan sees images the souls of eight people appear to him and for some reason are connected to him. But, why? As we meet him he is drawn to a window where he sees a woman screaming and hoping for help. Not sure of what he might find when he arrives on the floor that he thinks she is on he opens the door and what greets him would terrify anyone to the core. Imagine seeing eight ghosts but not just any ghosts. Ones that actually seem attached to your being and seem to run in and out of your body to get where they need to go. But, what happens next is terrifying. Wherever Hassan goes he feels their presence. He realizes…

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My head may burst in the coming days…

 

 

So many things to be worried about inside and outside my head and the reason is because my double lives are both highly active at the same time.

Right now I’m two months away from becoming a full fledged doctor…. Ok, ok a dentist, anyhow, I started my midterms now and as I said once before they like me so much that they are trying their best to keep me for another semester… I almost got carpel-tunnel from answering their questions. Also, I have to finish my clinical requirements, which are a lot and some takes hours to accomplish.

Now comes my other life, the one I love more and known for by most people, my writing life. I have received some news every time I think about them jolts of excitement and fear run through me. My publishers told me that within the coming days a copy of Kirkus’s review of my novel will be sent to me. For those who don’t know who’s Kirkus they are not only one of the most reliable book reviewing magazine, they also have influences on agents, publishers and film executives, so a positive review will be BIG. But… my pessimistic dentist mind is playing the worst case scenario.

The second great news is getting an e-mail from CBC informing me that they have a copy of my book and they, their words not mine, will review the book and if they consider it for coverage, they will contact my publisher or me. The undiscovered part of the human brain where mister dentist hides is focusing on ‘IF we consider it…’, he’s a brain tumor I tell you.

The last but not least is my E-mail campaign, in which more than 500,000 people will get to have a peak at my book and, hopefully, get curious enough to click on it and view it. But the thing is it will happen next month… Oh waiting, how I love thee…

So as you can see, my second life is making it harder for me to learn how to reconstruct a broken jaw (Like I’ll ever do that). Right now, all I can do is pray and hope that all of my work will benefit in the end.