Its 2015 already.

Its 2015 already.

I didn’t used to believe old folks when they said life went faster the longer you lived it.

But they sure spoke true.

In some ways, 2014 was, for me, a year of abrupt challenge, a year of cumbersome change; a year of long nights and worrisome days.

And the year still rolled by like one of those calendar page montages from a ‘40’s-era Hollywood potboiler.

In some ways, 2014 was a year bursting with joy, a year of lingering lightheartedness; a year full of those moments that simmer with the kind of happiness that slows down time, that make us take stock, and that remind us how much fun life can be.

And it all still flew past like a late-for-work hummingbird in the commuter lane.

In 2014, I got sick. Real sick. Then I got well. Very well.

Not everyone we love got a chance to get well in 2014, and we mourn their passing.

Loved ones both here and gone sustain me.

I am grateful for their presence always.

My wife and I got to do a small bit of travel in 2014. We didn’t go too far, but we saw things we never saw before. We went to concerts, and comedy shows, and ate a few great restaurant meals.

We are grateful for the opportunity to see and do things others may not get to see and do.

I watched the news in 2014. I read a lot, and not just the work of writers with whom I already happen to agree. I listened to opinions from TV talking heads with minutes to fill between commercials, from friends with perceptions of the world so different from mine I wonder how we’ve grown so close, and even from the random dude at the convenience store who believes the whole world is his own little AM radio station.

If all my thoughts on current events coalesce into one single idea, it’s this:

All lives matter.

On past New Year’s Days I’ve tried to reflect on what I’ve learned in the prior year. Among the things I learned or had reinforced for me in 2014 are:

  1. Don’t judge other people by what you believe is in their hearts and minds. Judge yourself by what you know is in yours.
  2. Too many people lack empathy for others. They only see the world through the prism of their own experiences. A worthwhile goal in life is try to see any situation from a point of view that conflicts and challenges your own. You may learn something about you.
  3. Most people don’t ask enough questions.

 *

2015 you ask?

I got your 2015 right here:

Big things are on the horizon.

We’re going to go places and we’re going to do things, and sometime in the spring of 2015 you’re going to read these words on the back of a new book:

“July 4th, 1976. When Tooey Walter walked beyond The Block’s fringes and in toward its pulsating neon heart, his instincts stopped him mid-stride, as if he were entering a predatory place like a marsh or a woods. Places where it was important to know where he was stepping.”

Bloody Point: 1976 is the hard-boiled but nostalgic story of Tooey Walter, a young Chesapeake Bay waterman hired to retrieve a local big shot’s rebellious daughter from The Block, Baltimore’s notorious red light district. One part coming-of-age adventure mixed with one part epic quest and garnished with a funky slice of Bicentennial Americana, Bloody Point: 1976 takes the reader on a wild ride, from Maryland’s rural Eastern Shore to the rough and tumble streets of a big city nightmare, and back again, to where, after the final inevitable confrontations, nothing will ever be the same.

Told with characters born of voice, humor, and truth, Brent Lewis’ first novel, Bloody Point: 1976 is an occasionally violent, frequently racy, and ultimately tragic tale of conflicted people in a changing time and place.

I can’t wait for you to read it.

15 thoughts on “Its 2015 already.

    • Brent! Keep on rockin’ !! See this link to some neat stuff written by another writer friend, Michael Willard. http://www.michaelwillard.org/ He has a really neat pdf I can send you, covering/including this excerpted text:

      The Willard Reader
      January, 2015
      “Fiction was invented the day Jonah arrived home and told his wife that he was
      three days late because he had been swallowed by a whale.”
      Gabriel Garcia Marquez
      A Writer’s Lament
      I spend about 750 hours a year writing books
      —both novels and non-fiction— and it hasn’t made
      me rich.
      Writing is not a hobby. It is a
      solitary commitment.
      I started writing professionally at age 18
      working on the city desk of the Orlando Sentinel. Of
      course, that’s if you can call covering the cop shop
      and writing obituaries a profession.
      As quick as a cat could wink an eye, I could
      write about all the city’s newly dead population. The
      shorter the obit, the larger the hole was for news.
      “John Brown, 87, died of some dreadful disease,
      etc.”
      Fact is people who say they only write for
      themselves have
      specific characteristics
      : One, they are
      not serious about what they write; and two, they are
      only kidding themselves.
      Writers write to be read. They don’t write
      believing there will be a pot of gold at the end of the
      rainbow, but they hope there will be recognition of
      their work. Even a nod will often do.
      If it comes with a paycheck, even better.
      This probably has something to do with ego,
      but mostly it’s about pride with a pinch of ambition
      tossed in.
      [cut]
      Thanks!!
      – karl I sent Michael some links to some of your stuff, 🙂 !

  1. Not sure if you know this Brent but my family and I moved to the shore from Pa. in 1967. My mother would occasionally enter a five and dime store called Fox’s in Centreville. There was a little old women that worked there and would watch everything my mom did. At first my mom was annoyed and thought to herself, ” does she think I’m going to steel something, the way that she is watching me”. My mom was not shy about telling others what exactly what was on her mind. Then something made mom refrain from spilling her guts. Next, the clerk Mrs. Vivian Chance, asked my mom if she could help her. After a few minutes they befriended each other. Mrs. Chance asked my mom if she would like to join the Eastern Star. This was a start of a wonderful friendship that blended two families together. So when you talk about not judging people and to give each other a chance, this is what came to my mind. Vivian taught my mom and my family so many things about the eastern shore. Vivian also told my mom this ” Those who live the longest sees the most”. Vivian passed away in the 1980’s with cancer at the age of eighty-six. Now my mom is eighty-six and I am still learning from her.
    Keep reading, writing, talking and seeing what will expand your heart and soul. Then SHARE, SHARE and SHARE

  2. Well said, Cappy. Do get that story finished, so we all can see / share. Peace and love and all the blessings you can handle are wished for you and Peggy for the coming year, as it races along… You are *so* right, the late-life time / speed- warp effect really does that way. I am surely glad I waited, 🙂

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