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1. Yes to the Dress {Again}

Hi.  My name is Heather Dixon, and I'm an addict.

I like to watch "Say Yes to the Dress."

It's a terrible addiction.  There are so many other good, wonderful things I could be addicted to.

Like mathematics.  Or oatmeal.  Or cocaine.


I don't know why I keep watching it.  It's a terrible show.

All the dresses look the same.


A lot of the brides are absolute monsters.





So why do I keep watching it?  Why???*

*probably because it's free on Youtube.


Here's what's really dumb about the whole thing:  I already have a wedding dress.


No, I really do.

I was going to be married earlier this year.

I'd wanted a wedding dress like Grace Kelly's:


Isn't she so pretty??

Unfortunately, wedding dresses that looked like they stepped out of a 50's musical haven't been in style since...well...the 50's.


So when I went shopping, there were a whoooole lot of sleeveless dresses....

But not a lot of Grace Kelly dresses :(

I found one that almost came close.

It cost $5500.



{I didn't buy it.}

I'd pretty much given up on my 50's wedding dress fantasies, when on the fly I decided to visit a tiny little dress shop tucked away behind a storage facility.

It was so tiny they didn't have enough dressing rooms {and to be fair...I did show up without an appointment.}  But they fit me in anyway...and they fit me in a broom closet!

That's where I found It.


Not the mop bucket...The Grace Kelly dress!  

It was sooooooooo pretty.  

{And way cheaper than $5500.  Which made it even prettier!}

 The lady who runs the shop told me her secret--she orders plus-size dresses in smaller sizes {she says a lot of dress shops don't know you can do that} and so that's how she finds dresses with sleeves.

Here's a picture of It:


I know right!  It's even prettier when it's not a badly-drawn grayscale cartoon!

That was then.

This is now.

A month before the wedding, my fiance broke up with me.



But enough about him.  {Though I really enjoyed drawing that last frame.}

All this to say, I still have a wedding dress.  And even worse, it still had to finish being altered.  Which meant I had to re-live everything every time I put it back on...

Thankfully, the lady who fitted me gave me the best advice I'd ever gotten:


And so, with the money I'd saved from returning his wedding band and other wedding expenses, I bought a 22" inch cintiq...which I am using right now.


Some people would say that's definitely a trade up.  {Oh, but not me!}

The dress currently hangs in my closet.  It's too perty to sell :)


I bring this all up because the other day, I was {yet again} watching the show.


A bride came in with her grandma and her entourage.


The grandma had very definite ideas of what she wanted.


The bride had very definite ideas of what she didn't want.


To make her grandma happy though, {because grandma was paying for the dress}, she decided to try on a dress with sleeves.

She hated it.


I had to stop drawing at this point, because I was like:


And it did.  It was absolutely gorgeous.

But the bride didn't just hate it.  She really hated it.




What made this all totally worse is that this was "Yes to the Dress: Atlanta", which meant that all these terrible things were spoken in a Southern accent!  Something as adorable as a Southern accent should never be used to say such horrible things.  There oughtta be a law!*

*I really mean that, too.  My plans for Can-merica are moving along and when I'm dictator, the second law* I'll put into motion is that people with Southern accents can only say food-y things.  Like, "Honey," "Sweetie-Pie," "Possum with a sweet potatah," etc.  I have Plans.

**The first law is that every Mountie has to learn how to tango.

The bride comes out to the dressing room floor...


And her entourage is like:


Oh yes, that dress with sleeves surrrre is funny.

Grandma just sits there.



It IS pretty!!




It was. :(

The bride goes back to the dressing room and tries on a dress that looks like every other dress in the store. :( :(



They love it.



Long pause.





NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!





I haven't stopped drawing since the episode ended.


This blog isn't very famous.

There are about 4 people who visit it a day.

One is my mom.  {Thanks, mom!}

But there are 3 others.  One of them could be that Southern grandma.

This blog post is for her.

Southern Grandma, you were RIGHT.  That dress with sleeves was beautiful.  Don't you listen to them.  You gotta go with your GUT and your gut was RIGHT.




The End.

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2. Thanksgiving Movie




















I'm a really fun person to watch movies with.


Addendum:  Thank you so much for the kind words on the new blog design!  It was a long time coming.  We should do something to celebrate...like maybe seeing a movie or something...?*

*But only if you've read the book

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3. Cinderella Umbrage



They obviously found their target demographic:  Me.

Anyway, here's the trailer.

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4. Cinderella and the Prince



Recently, I read that in the early developments of "Cinderella," after she tries on the glass slipper, the Grand Duke brings her back to the Palace, and when they arrive, the Prince comes running out to greet her.  He doesn't care at all that she's in rags.

I thought that was the sweetest thing I've ever read.  So of course I had to draw it :) :)

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5. The Lamest Cool Dream

 The other night I had the coolest dream ever.

Or at least...it could've been.

The dream began when I found myself at the secret wizarding headquarters of the Harry Potter rebellion group!  {Dumbledore's Army..or the Order of the Phoenix.  One of those!}  And they wanted me to join their resistance!


Me!  A muggle!  Me!!

Brace yourselves...the dream is about to get COOLER.

Our entire strategy and battle plans were laid out in a giant field...


...of LEGOS.



That's right.


We weren't fighting Voldemort.  We were fighting...


THE EMPIRE.


Ok, so now you are thinking, "Wow, Heather!  This really is the coolest dream ever!!"  And you'd be right!  It was!  It was the coolest dream ever!

...Until this point.

Because at this point, Dumbledore be like:


And I'll be darned


I spent the entire rest of the night dreaming about taking legos apart.

No battles.  No epic magic force fights.

Just hours of looking for where the stupid legos were supposed to go.


{And that's when I woke up.}



It was the lamest cool dream ever.



{I never did find that bin.}

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6. Onion Truck Adventures

 This is my mom.


She wears pearl earrings and an apron every day.

{Yeah...she's pretty cool :D}

 She also lives in an area where they're harvesting lots of onions.

Sometimes, she drives behind the onion trucks loaded with onions.  This is because if an onion falls out on the side of the road, she can pull over and grab it and make tasty things!  {The rumor is, these fresh-grown onions taste waaaaay better than store-bought onions.}




Anyway.

Yesterday my mom was driving behind an onion truck that took a turn a little too fast...




Eeeeeeeeeerk...


{CRASH!!}


It just makes you wanna cry... :D
 
{Mom said it was the coolest thing she'd ever seen.}

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7. More Mary Poppins

Too soon for a Mary Poppins fanart?
 

A:  It is NEVER too soon for a Mary Poppins fanart.


I met Mary Poppins in Disneyland last week!!

...sort of.

I was there with my family...like, my whole family, nieces, nephews, all (which means we filled up the park!) and there she was, standing next to the band at the entrance.


Well, of course my little nieces got way excited and thought I ought to take a picture with her!


(Ok...I was pretty excited too :)

 Them:


Her:

 And I'll be darned, she turned her back on us!




And I was like:


 


I think that was when we decided Star Tours probably didn't have a line.


If this doesn't satiate your thirst for Mary Poppins* goodness, you can follow me on Instagram, where I'm doing a bit of Inktober and a lot of Mary Poppins  ^_^



*the real one


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8. Food Opera (Part 2)

Chapter 4

Heather opens the fridge.


Heather closes the fridge.


Heather opens the fridge.


Heather closes the fridge.


Heather opens the fridge.


Heather closes the fridge.


Chapter 5


Chapter 6

The Chuggaluggalicious™ Ice Cream is gone.


Heather starts arguing with her "mom".


Chapter 7









Chapter 8

The sofa eats Heather.









THE END.


On a completely unrelated note, does anyone need a Costco-sized bag of chia seeds?

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9. Food Opera (Part 1)

Chapter 1

Heather slams the door behind her.

"From now on, I'm eating healthy!" she says.


The sofa says nothing.

The coffee table says nothing.

The bookcase says nothing.
 

 The lamp says, 
 


Chapter 2

Heather buys healthy food.
 

It costs more than a car.

Heather says, 
 

The furniture looks ominously on.



The lamp says nothing.


Chapter 3

 Heather spends hours preparing healthy food.


It tastes like deer barf.

Heather drinks it all.

 
She celebrates with a quart of Chuggaluggalicious™ Ice Cream.


TO BE CONTINUED!!


Oh man!  What a cliffhanger!

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10. Card Shark









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11. Classy Wonder Woman

I wanted to get this posted by the Fourth of July; but it ended up taking a little longer.  On the other hand, it's never too late to post a Wonder Woman fanart, amiright?


I could've drawn her in that sissy swimsuit thingy...but that sissy cardigan thingy is much cuter.


I spent hours on her invisible jet there in the background.  HOURS

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12. Temple Square Morning


The mornings have been remarkable lately.

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13. Train Stories

Things have been kind of crazy lately.

A lot of that has been due to "Illusionarium," the book I've been working on these past few years.  It's nearing the end stages of development.


It's about some kids who get the holy tar beaten out of them....the way a good, decent, God-fearing children's book ought to be.  It should be out in a year or so.

(I know that's forever away.  I'm a slow writer.)

A lot of the writing I do takes place on the train.  Since I have to commute into the city for my day job, I get up really early--about 4 am--hop on the first train, and ride it to Ogden, then to Provo, then back to Salt Lake.  


When I get off from work, I ride it from endline to endline again, typing the whole time.  It's pretty much become my second home.


In fact, I've gotten to know all the little secrets.

For example, the train has 3 really nice, new cars--


...And one really old, horrible, creaky, leaky car affectionately called the "Cattle Car."


No one ever rides the Cattle Car....except me.


...which makes me the train creeper!  hahaha!!

The fancy cars are constantly blowing freezing on you...but if you feel the walls of the Cattle Car...



...you can find some toasty hotspots.  It's the best.



I know some other pretty nifty secrets, too.  I swear there is an abandoned grand piano sitting on the hill between the Draper and Thanksgiving Point stations.  No idea how it got there.

 
 One night I nearly missed my stop, and in my haste I left the Illusionarium manuscript w/the editor's feedback on the train.  Oops.  I guess some lucky train person got to read Illusionarium early!


...as well as everything that's wrong with it.

 My best train story though happened one freezing cold night last February.


The train had just pulled into the Provo station, like it always does, and I waited in the Cattle Car, like I always do, for it to reverse and head back to the Ogden station, which it always will.


I guess I must've been pretty into the story, because I didn't notice how the whole train had emptied and sat at the station for a good 40 minutes like that...

...until the lights went out.


...and the train s-l-o-w-l-y chugged out of the station.  In the wrong direction.


It stopped a while later, in the middle of an abandoned railyard...


...in the middle of nowhere.


I, um.  I wasn't quite sure what to do.


 Everyone was gone.


The door was locked, so I couldn't get out.


There wasn't anyone, or anything, that I could see outside the window.  Only the frozen railyard.

I decided that maybe I should just keep working until they put the train back at the station.





I had a good cry.

It didn't really help.*

*crying only helps if you do it in front of someone...dang it.

It also didn't help that I needed to go to the bathroom!

Desperation led me to do the one smart thing I'd thought of all night...look up the train's website online and call their customer service.


...which was closed.




We really don't need to see this.

I don't know how long I remained huddled in the cattle car...maybe an hour longer or so...before I somehow found the emergency number for the entire public transportation system...


A very nice lady assured me that someone would be there very soon.


Very, very soon.


At least within the next several hours. 




 



THEY FOUND ME!!!!!!!!



Hurrah!!


I was saved!!!




I followed them for what seemed like forever, out of the creepy lone railyard and back to the station, where another train would soon be headed north.



Needless to say, I was pretty darn happy I'd been rescued.


In fact it was probably the happiest day of my life.


In fact, I think I'll ride the train...forever! <3 <3 <3

FYI, this draft of Illusionarium turned out to be rather dark and violent.  I can't for the life of me figure out why. 

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14. Frozen Coloring Contest--The Vinnahs!

 At last, the results are in!  Thank you so much, everyone, for being so patient.  One of these days life won't be so crazy!

I always get gunshy about coloring contests because I feel like everyone did such a good job, and it's hard to pick just one.  To help me, the judging process was aided by my talented artist coworkers.  I asked them which pictures stood out the most to them, and we went from there.  Needless to say, it was a hard decision!

And now, the winners!


 First place goes to Chiara!  Winner winner chicken dinner!  Congrats, Chiara!

And of course, we would be remiss if we didn't make note of the honorable mentions:





 Honorable mentions will get a beaded bookmark.  If you are a fella, I'll be sure to make it a manly bookmark :D  I'll be in touch with you all Soon!

And, because I think they were all so lovely, I'm including the rest of the entries below, if you want to take a look.  I've blurred out the emails, but if you're shy about your artwork being posted, let me know and I can remove it.  But don't be shy--they look lovely!  Shout out to the Gilbert Blythe and Joker ones ^_^
  



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15. 7 Brothers for 7 Brides

Hey you crazy kids!  Thank you so much for all the coloring book entries.  They look incredible!  Right now I'm going through the deciding process, but you can expect the results to be announced in a few days.

In the meantime...

A week or so ago, I saw my 11-year-old cousin perform in his school play, "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers."  It was adorable.




He played Caleb.

During the scene changes I got to thinking.  I got to thinking, how much cooler would the play be if it was switched around?  If it was Seven Brothers for Seven Brides??

I can see this going places.  Right now...it's going on my blog!


Starring:  Abigail, Bathsheba, Chastity, Dorcus, Eve, Faith, and Grace.

Who wouldn't want to marry them?

So, these ladies live out in the middle of nowhere on a farm, raising pigs and such, independent, strong-willed, and most definitely not needing any men.


Until...



 EEEEEEEEP!







Abigail surmises the spider situation.








What's a girl to do??

I'll tell you what's a girl to do.  A girl's to get a gun and a burlap sack, that's what a girl's to do.


Shhh....







And on the other side of town...






And then.






Why do I think this is so funny??  I'm a horrible person.





The Escape!









I'm not quite sure what happens after this, or how it will all end.  I like it to think it'll be like the play--they all fall in love with their kidnappers and live happily ever after.


In a horrible twisted way, it's kind of sweet.

Or it could have ending number 2:


After the long winter the boys get an attorney and sue the holy carp out of the ladies for the terrible emotional trauma they were put through.

I don't like that ending very much.

How about ending number 3??



Everyone bands together to fight off the army of massacring spiders!  Danger!  Excitement!  Romance!  In this epic 8-hour adventure of love and war!

(This ending is my favorite.)

And, ending number 4:


The spiders eat all of them.

I don't like that ending AT ALL. :(

What ending is your favorite?  Or is there an ending that's even better than all of these?  I must hear it.

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16. FROZEN Coloring Contest!

I think it's high time for a coloring contest!


Here's a coloring page of Hans and Anna's wedding day.  And here are the instructions!

1) Print out page
2) Color.  The contest closes on Easter Sunday, April 20th.  So you have about a month!
3) Scan or take a picture, and send it to me at storyboarder@gmail.com (with "coloring page" as the title of the email)
4) Wait to see if you win the awesome prize.

And what is that awesome prize, m'friends?  I must've been pretty excited for the Art of Frozen to come out, so I pre-ordered it...three times.  I returned one, but decided to keep one as a prize for this contest.


This delicious book could be yours.

AGE is optional, mostly for if you're like 8 years old and are an amazing artist, that will definitely be taken into account.
YES, this is open to international colorers!

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17. Banana Conspiracy








Every. Time.


*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

POST SCRIPT:  What, another post about sentient fruit?  This blog is getting pretty pathetic.  Exciting stuff coming up, I promise!

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18. Chitty Triptych

Do you love Chitty Chitty Bang Bang?

I do.

Not long ago I went to "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" (the play) with a few friends.  It was just fanastic!!  I've been thinking about Truly Scrumptious ever since.






Edit:  Actually, it's Caratacus I've been thinking about ever since I saw the play.  That man is DREAMY. <3 <3

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19. Mounds of Mounties

When I'm ruler of Can-mer'ca
(And Florida's sunk into the sea)


When my tyranny's established
Then I'll make just one decree:

Every Mountie in Ca-nah-dah
With their gorgie little hats 


With their gorgie little bootsies
And their tunics, breeches, spats


WILL BE MY SLAVES


I'll gather them like tribbles
in my Mountie-catcher truck


Take them to my Mountie Mansion

(Oh those lucky duck Canucks) 

I'll have Mounties in the kitchens


I've have Mounties in the halls


If there's Mounties at the fences 


I'll have Mounties on my walls 


They'll feed me grapes by poolside
They'll feed me Lean Cuisine


They'll love, adore, and fear me
As their reigning Mountie Queen.

<3 <3 <3 <3 <3

Soon, my friends.  Soon.  All I need to do is wait for the government to become completely corrupt, then I take over.  So, obviously, not long.

On a completely related note...Did you hear Bill Nye the Science Guy is on Dancing With The Stars this season??


You cannot make these things up.  I'm totally pumped.  I'm gonna watch every episode.  Even if I'm scared out of my mind about seeing him do moves like THIS


I'll be strong.  My innocence might crawl into a corner and die, but I will be strong.

Why is my innocence so small??

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20. Time for Limes









This dream was brought to you by stress, a slight cold, and the whipped cream that I'd accidentally left out of the fridge all day and then devoured like a baby bird.

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21. Train Probability




DANGIT.

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22. Cold Weather Camping

 I work with a lot of guys, which means I get to hear some pretty good scout camp stories.

The best ones involve fire, infectious diseases, and cold-weather camping.

My director once told a story about how he went snow caving.


He got pretty good and sweaty digging the cave, so when he went to bed that night, he laid his pants out to dry.




Of course they froze stiff overnight...so not only did he have to wear wet pants, but they were freezing.



This was the exact moment he decided to become an artist.


On the other hand, I have a buddy (Joe) who loves cold-weather camping.  It's like his favorite thing.  He could survive a winter in the Yukon with only a plastic bag and a dead bee.  When he became a scout leader, he was really excited to show the little guys the ropes.

So, when it was time to take the little fellas on a cold-weather camping trip, they had a meeting where they briefed the boys on what to bring.  Joe, being the expert, wanted to make sure they brought all the right clothes.


The meeting was in February.  Most of the boys were wearing shorts and no jackets.  Joe decided this was a good time to have an object lesson.




 Out in the freezing cold of the parking lot, Joe launched into a giant lecture on how to dress warm...



And the scouts were like:

guh guh guh guh guh guh guh

And the other leader was like:

guh guh guh guh guh guh guh 

 ...And Joe was like, great!  I've hoped you've all learned you don't wanna be out in the cold without a coat!

Several days later, they were on their way!


Joe and the scouts stepped out into the blistering cold.  One of the leaders stepped out of his car...


...and promptly got back in his car, and left.


Aaaaaand...the rest of the weekend pretty much went like that.







Addendum to this story:  Joe's just entered a contest to run a bunch of sled dogs over the Arctic Circle. 

not this

this


The competition is sponsored by a Norwegian company, Fjallraven, which sells coats and stuff.  Every year they pick 2 people from each country around the world to compete.  They give them all the right equipment, they give them the dogs and the sleds, and then they set 'em all loose in the outer regions of the world.


This sounds like a nightmare.  (To me.)

Joe thinks it would be a blast.  So, I'm not gonna twist your arm or anything, but if you want to vote for Joe you can go here.  You can vote through facebook.  If it gets enough attention, the Fjallraven people will pick him!



Do it for the dogs.  (I hear Americans are pretty tasty.)

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23. I'm a Jerk (Trunk or Treat edition)

My neighborhood did a Trunk or Treat this year.

I have Views about Trunk or Treats.  But I like my neighbors.  What a quandary!

(I decided to go.)

This year I dressed up like raggy Cinderella.  This is because I'm--not to brag or anything--really good at cleaning toilets.  With that kind of work ethic, I figured it was only fair to make the Trunk-or-Treaters EARN their candy this year.


So when the first kid came to me and was like:


I was like:


And the kid was like:


The kids loved it!









Actually it ended probably closer to this:


I can't wait for next year!

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24. I'm a Jerk (episode 127)

Every Thursday I go to Orem to teach my cousins piano lessons.  My aunt has 9 kids (and one on the way!) and I usually get to stay long enough to have dinner and play with the kiddies.  This makes Thursdays are my favorite day of the week.  (And I really mean that, too.)

And holy mother of pearl, is it fun to mess with the minds of these kids.


Example:  last week my little cousin, Gina, said:



And I was like,







And Gina was like:






Later...











EEEEHEEEHEEEHEEEEEE!!

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25. Nazi Darkness / Radiant Light

A post for The Creative Think Machine.


It was a Halloween topic, but I think I might have gotten a little too dark with this one.  Hard to work on.

It's inspired by a book I'm reading right now, by Jacques Lusseyran.


Jacques was one of the leaders of the French resistance during WWII.  He was born in France, in 1921.


When Jacques was 8 years old, he was coming in from the schoolyard, all rowdy with his buddies, and accidentally knocked into the corner of the teacher's desk.


Hard.

So hard, in fact, that the lenses on his glasses embedded themselves into his eyes, and rendered him blind.  He had to have his eyes removed.

But here is the strange thing: even though he was totally blind, Jacques could still see.


He saw, he said, a sort of radiance, or light.  He could see it "rising, spreading, resting on objects, giving them form, then leaving them."


He could feel this stream of light between the leaves of trees, or the auras of people, like in his parents.  He couldn't tell whether the light came from within himself, or from some unknown source, but it was there.  It coursed through him in a stream of radiance.


But this light was conditional; if he was angry, or afraid, the light withdrew, and darkness enveloped him.  If he was playing with friends and he "suddenly grew anxious to win, to be first at all costs, then all at once I could see nothing."  If he was jealous or unfriendly, the light left.

But, if he focused on being calm, and serene withing, and "approached people with confidence and thought well of them, I was rewarded with light."

When Jacques tried to tell people about this light, they didn't believe him.  So, he kept quiet.

In 1938, Jacques heard the first Nazi broadcast on Radio Vienna, and was horrified.  He could immediately see the "outer darkness" of the words that emanated from the radio.


As the months progressed and the Nazis drew nearer, Jacques realized that there were two sides in this battle, "with love on one side and hate on the other; fear one way and joy another."  So, Jacques got to work to fight the darkness he saw.

He studied the German language for two hours every day, for the next five years.


And, after the Germans invaded France, 17-year-old Jacques--who was not terribly religious, or was raised by religious parents--adopted an ascetic way of life, and began each day at 4:30 am with a soldier's prayer, praying for the strength to fight this monster of darkness.


Jacques became good enough at recognizing light that, after he formed the Volunteers of Liberty (the resistance group), he was in charge of recruitment.  It was a risky job--any member might let  slip to a Nazi soldier, and destroy the resistance overnight.  The members of the resistance would tentatively bring a friend to meet Jacques.  He would talk to the friend for a while, listening to their voice, would shake their hand, and see the light about them.  And by this he could gauge if they were trustworthy and fit for the resistance.


It's a good book so far.


One last picture:


I did this entire post on my new Windows Surface Pro.  It's like a mini cintiq and I'm not just saying that.  Two thumbs WAY up.

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