Look at the rain long enough, with no thoughts in your head, and you gradually feel your body falling loose, shaking free the world’s reality. Rain has the power to hypnotize.
Hajime, South of the Border, West of the Sun by Haruki Murakami
I spent three hours with this book in a bus this morning from Kisumu to Mbita. To the world woven by Hajime, of love, lust, decisions and young love and from the very first time he meets Shimamoto, he knows that she’s unforgettable.
He’s not a character you’d warm up to. It’s in his relationships with women that you could say he’s inconsiderate and selfish and as such ends up hurting the women he interacts with. However, it’s in Murakami’s style of writing that you cannot waver from reading the book to the end. And in a way, Hajime in peeling layer upon layer of the people in his life, perhaps finds the clarity of his own.
This book made me smile at the thought of rain in 186 pages.
Of his love and meeting with Shimamtoto twenty five years later, of the secrets she never let him unravel, of the grief she wore, the song It will Rain by Bruno Mars, is all I had in mind.
And at nine-thirty Shimamoto showed up. Strangely enough, she always appeared on, quiet rainy evenings.
I’ve had a flu this past week that came with joint pain, exhaustion, headaches and a never ending fever and when I thought the worst was behind me, I get to deal with a never ending cough. For three days I lacked the sense of taste.
So, let me start over: happy holidays! How are you spending the holiday season? We have two days to the end of 2021 and at the back of my mind there is the feeling to strive for more, better, for adventures, for a happier me and all that. I am also looking forward to achieving the goals that I never did this year.
As I write this, it’s 9:33pm and it’s raining in Kisumu. I haven’t had a cup of tea tonight. I just finished watching, The Silent Sea, on Netflix. If you’re looking for a dystopian or sci-fi series to watch- give it a go, it’s worth the time and it’s Gong Yoo on this!
On reading: I have bought more books this month which I hope to include in the books I get to read in the coming days.
This year, I did get to read 202 of the 200 books I had set as my Goodreads Reading Challenge and I would love to read more books next year.
On writing: I would love to do four key things:
Write daily by adhering to a writing schedule
Join and commit to a Writers Group
Publish my #WIP
Talk more about my writing either on talk shows, podcasts, book clubs.
I look forward to reflecting more on the things I do and have done this year in the next two days.
Until the next post, do have a wonderful time.
Make memories, cherish the good, challenge yourself to learn from the moments that wound you. Give love. Laugh loud. Dance like you’re the wind.
In 2014 and early 2015, I got onto Amazon and by then it was CreateSpace that called out to me and I tried my hand at it and went for publishing books for sale on Amazon. My author page now looks pretty much like this:
One of the greatest challenges working and writing then publishing on Amazon was that I could not reach out to more Kenyans and persuade them to buy the books online, because first it meant using a debit or credit card and second, if they wanted paperback copies the cost of shipping was ten times more than the book. As a Writer, though Amazon offered me the books at an author’s price, I also had to factor in shipping costs and this had me ship books only in the fall- so readers here could only get copies once a year! It was exhausting!
So, in 2019 I worked with them and published Sifuna, then followed it with Zuri: The Chronicler of Enzi and In the Quiet.
From 2011, to date, I am learning that it takes a lot of work to write, and not just jot down words but to align them into a story and a memorable one as such.
I am also learning that self-publishing means you put in the work, if you do not work on a quality cover, or format your book into the right size and ensure all contents fit the frame, then it’s nerve wrecking and means you go back and forth with the printers until you get it right and all this comes at a cost because in Kenya we import paper, so any paper waster is money wasted.
Today, I appreciate the efforts put in by the Kenya Copyright Board to ensure provision of copyright certification for content produced. Elly gives a step by step account of how to copyright your work in Kenya-> here
It’s also easier and faster buying an ISBN from the Kenya National Library Services at www.isbn.ac.ke
I hope to keep writing and publish more books for as long as I’ve got breath in me and for this year, it’s been a daunting task to complete a book I had wanted to publish in August.
I would love to be vastly read and to also see more young girls and women writing books, both fiction and non-fiction in Kenya.
One more thing I hope to achieve is designing good book covers. I am currently taking lessons on basic graphic design and learning how expensive good software is! So, I hope I can learn how to create book covers and in the future buy the software and use it.
Until then, if you’re interested in print on demand services, email Publish 4 All at firstname.lastname@example.org and they’ll give you a breakdown of the services they offer.
The Publisher’s take on this book: This collection explores love in all of its forms, from the darkest love to the love that makes you feel like you’re flying, love that holds you, and love that breaks you. To Love You To The Bone will chew you up and spit you out in all the right ways, but by the end of it, you will leave knowing that love is attainable and have your heart opened to all of the possibilities that love has for you.
He was the pen; she was the lighter.
He wrote his story. She set it on fire.
To be loved to the Bone by Beverly Maier
I love it when I am consumed by words, and this collection by Beverly is written in both long prose and short sentences and comes with simple artwork. She draws you in and releases you, more like giving you a moment to catch your breath before she drowns you in her hurt, elation, and sometimes anger- so you get it all in less than 200pages.
Verdict: 4 stars
I got to read this off Netgalley and I am glad I did.
Be gentle with the hearts that make their way into your hands.
Love doesn’t look the same on everyone and it is much easier to break things than it is to fix them.
To Be Loved to The Bone by Beverly Maier
About the Author: Beverly is a twenty-eight-year-old author based out of Central Florida. She is the author of two poetry collections, Detaching Roots and To Be Loved To The Bone. Read more about her here and buy her books: here