Rush Hour Train

Happiness is an empty
rush hour train
only the scent of the past remains
and stains of a crushed Cheeto
on a vacant seat,
a crumpled can of pop
and graffiti covered shops
that rush by, unbroken

Happiness is an empty
rush hour train
a subtle sway to hush the pain
as life’s maelstrom
briefly slows its swirl
the fringes of my soul
begin an upward curl, a smile

Muse strikes,
a welcome distraction
from mortality
pulls me back from
the edge of never
to maybe…just wait and see
please save me from obscurity

Happiness is an empty
rush hour train
the pause I prayed for
spared me again
from being life’s prey
sweet Muse diffuses the illusion,
and I return to the conclusion
that I spell out the meaning
of my existence,
one word at a time.

~Eric Vance Walton~

Review of One Word at a Time

Her Headache

“A successful writing career will humble you more than almost anything else I can think of.”
– Eric Vance Walton

Welcome to this mid-November edition of Spotlight Saturday.

I have several author pages on my Facebook newsfeed, but one such author stands out as I scroll through.

Eric Vance Walton, Author has written novel “Alarm Clock Dawn” (his debut) and, his newest book, “One Word At a Time: Finding Your Way As An Indie Author” is out now.

Being smack-dab in the midst of November and NaNoWriMo, I thought this would be the perfect time to introduce a practical, how-to guide on how to reach for success as an author in the new, developing, and always changing world of indie publishing.

Author’s Publish Press knows all about that and they have brought, along with Eric, us some useful tips and advice and an insightful step-by-step guide for how to navigate…

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We Are Worthy

I laughed at the comic below and then almost immediately it reminded me of how unbalanced our society is. When is the last time a song, a poem, a film, or a piece of art moved you? It happens to me almost on a weekly basis. The truth is these creative treasures have the power to impact you so deeply they can actually change you.

We live in a world rich with life-altering creative treasures, many of them are accessible for free 24/7 from any mobile device. The unfortunate thing is a staggeringly small percentage of the creative geniuses who create these great gifts ever reap the benefits of their valuable service to humanity. Creatives infuse our world with beauty, positive energy, they shake us from our apathy and challenge us to think. How valuable is this? More importantly, how do you put a price on it?

This, is the hard part for us creatives. Our creative fruits…art, literature, poetry are all subjective, what truly impacts one person might seem like crap to another. To add even more complexity, you must make a reasonable name for yourself before most people are willing to spend a dime on your work. The truth is it can’t be done overnight but it can be done. I am proof.

First you must give yourself permission to be an artist or writer. You must also give yourself permission to ask people to pay a reasonable price for your work. If you work hard and create a quality product that sparks an emotional connection with others you deserve to be compensated…don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Yes, you will have to give some content away for free at first but you shouldn’t do this for long. Keep honing your skills, continue to build your confidence, become a marketing ninja!

By the same token, if you encounter another creative person whose work moves you and you are in the position to do so, buy it. Become a patron. This is the greatest gift you can give someone who is struggling. It’s not just about the money but more about the validation of their talent. That item you buy could be the first sale they’ve had in a week or a month and it will give them the hope they need to keep pursuing their dreams. I know, I’ve been there, too many of us have. The age of the starving artist must come to an end. In reality we are all just one big creative family and it all begins with us.

Eric Vance Walton is a novelist, poet, aspiring world traveler, and tea junkie. He invites you to follow his unfolding story by “liking” his Facebook author page at https://www.facebook.com/EricVanceWaltonAuthor for updates and promotions on his current and upcoming projects. You can find Eric’s new book One Word At A Time: Finding Your Way as an Indie Author, on Amazon in print or as an ebook.

Article © 2014 Eric Vance Walton

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Freedom in Sixty-Four Bars

5:30AM wake up, shower,
coffee, buttered toast, and
So What flowing from the radio

its call and response,
like smoke, coaxes me softly
to some other kind of consciousness

a strange feeling settles
at two minutes thirty-three,
reality? It’s just some charlatan

“you’ve been a harlot, son.”
the notes say, “You’ve sold your best years for a song.”

By three minutes twenty-six
Mr. Davis had me transfixed,
I was living 2/7ths of a life

struggling through the mires
of a Monday to Friday strife
for such a small slice

but who am I to whine?
it’s taken quite a long time but…so what?
I’ve found freedom in sixty-four bars.

~Eric Vance Walton~

Great Reviews for One Word At A Time: Finding Your Way as an Indie Author!

I couldn’t be more thrilled by the reception of my new book One Word At A Time: Finding Your Way as an Indie Author! I’ve received so many kind words from those who’ve read it, I appreciate this more than you know.

The book now has SEVEN Amazon reviews with an average of 4.5 stars! If you’ve read the book I’d like to hear what you think and, please, whether you liked it or not please write an Amazon review!

If you haven’t read One Word At A Time yet and would like to Amazon has discounted the paperback (it’s also available as an eBook in the Kindle store).

Thank you!

One Word At A Time: Finding Your Way as an Indie Author
One Word At A Time: Finding Your Way as an Indie Author

A Grand Resurrection

When I was
just a young man
liked things
shiny and new,

as the years have gone by
I have grown to appreciate
a speckle of rust,
a layer of dust,
a mottled patina

the middle aged me
has a certain penchant
not for pretty things
but rather things
that have been cast aside
as useless and obsolete,
tired things huddled in a corner feeling like
they’ve lived a hundred lives,
maybe because I do too?

oftentimes all it
takes is a little attention
to spark a grand resurrection

You see, I’ve found
these things, they are
so eager to tell their stories
and continue their breath of life
inhale tarnished, exhale cleansed

I seek out and smile at
the perfectly imperfect
and bask in
their greatness of character
I don’t mind that they’ve
lived a hundred lives,
for in my heart
they are reborn and
in a way, so am I.

~Eric Vance Walton~

Vintage Raleigh Bike
Vintage Raleigh Bike

Resolutions, Schmesolutions

I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions, they seem half-hearted. Resolutions can be charming and fun but really amount to only inspirational buckshot launched into the air, willy nilly, when the clock strikes midnight. Goals, on the other hand I totally believe in and are all-powerful. Goals are our antidote to the days of our lives slipping through our fingers. Goals are like a highly trained sniper…calm, focused, and purposeful. Goals allow us to accomplish incredible things, really most anything we wish.

I can honestly say that I’ve had few goals that haven’t been achieved if I’ve chased them with real intent. Believe me when I say this…I’m not special, anyone can do this. The true secret to success when pursuing your goals is the quality of your intent. It also helps if you share your goals with as many people as possible. This creates a large body of cheerleaders and mentors that help to hold you accountable and keep you on track.

With that being said, here it goes, following are my goals for 2015:

1. Grow my readership on social media to 10,000 readers (or more) before the end of 2015. I will do this by producing high quality content that entertains as well as adds value to people’s lives. I want to continue to share everything I am learning every step of the way with my readers as I grow my publishing base. Reason being? I receive as much (if not more) in terms of inspiration and knowledge from my readers than I could ever give to them. I want to create a blueprint for others to follow. You can play an integral role in this goal by helping to spread the word about any of my writing you’ve connected with. The tiny (but mighty) SHARE button on Facebook is like gold to the indie author. Sharing of author pages and posts is one of the only effective ways left to scale your audience on social media;

2. Finish the first draft of my second novel, Truth Is Stranger by the end of May with a targeted release by Fall of 2015. I will use the NaNoWriMo template as a model (scaled to my personal schedule), I go into detail about how to do this in my recent book on writing, One Word At A Time: Finding Your Way as an Indie Author;

3. Monetize my website with Google Adsense to create another revenue stream. I’ve been thinking about this for years but have never gotten around to it. Monetizing is an easy way for creatives to make more money by doing what they love. I don’t care about money. To me money is just a means to an end but this will free up more of my time to create and to achieve goal #4;

4. Travel overseas. I’ve been an aspiring world-traveler since my earliest memory. Other places and cultures have always fascinated me. Wanderlust courses, like a drug, through my veins. Nothing to me enhances your life or provides a greater education than experiencing other cultures. I plan to get some of that education in 2015. I don’t care where but my wife and I will get started. Time waits for no one; and

5. Learn a second language. In the past I’ve dabbled in learning both Mandarin Chinese and French but haven’t pursued mastering these languages with any vigor. In 2015 I will learn to speak French and then we’ll see where it goes from there.

This list might seem lofty but my last few years have taught me that absolutely nothing is unattainable. I’ve seen the following quote in no fewer than a million memes over the past few days but it rings true with me, it reads, “Today is the first blank page of a 365 page book.” I am totally committed to making 2015 a breathtaking adventure. I’d be grateful if you stayed along with me for the ride! Much love, as always.

~Eric Vance Walton~

About The Author

Eric Vance Walton is a novelist, poet, aspiring world traveler, and tea junkie. He invites you to follow his unfolding story by “liking” his Facebook Author Page for updates and promotions on his current and upcoming projects. Eric’s new book One Word At A Time: Finding Your Way as an Indie Author recently charted at #7 in the Amazon Kindle Store and is available on Amazon in print or as an ebook.