Posts Tagged ‘Lemuria’

Schizandra and the Gates of Mu: Pre-Orders!

Well, it’s official! I can start taking pre-orders for my new novel, Schizandra and the Gates of Mu. I’m correcting the galleys and the book should be available to ship sometime in June 2009.

I’m taking pre-orders because my husband and I are moving at the end of June and I have no idea how many to order in advance without taking some kind of pre-order. If you would like an autographed and/or inscribed copy, please click here. All prices include shipping and handling, so please make sure to order one that reflects your location.

Here’s what people are saying:

“A beautiful debut, this fantasy sparks real-world insights into life’s challenges and chance encounters. Synchronicity, renewal, and power of belief shimmer through an intriguing tale with heartfelt characters. This story lingers, as readers find through it more magic in their own lives.” –Victoria Moran, author of Living a Charmed Life       

“I had the blissing to review Laura Bruno’s upcoming book Schizandra And The Gates Of Mu while I was on holiday. Schizandra, the teen heroine is a portal for human transformation. As I read it, I realised that everyone we meet is a portal for our own transformation. Seems there’s a little Schizandra in all of us.” —Shazzie (full review to come via another post)

“From first page to last, a truly tasty, fast-paced treat. Suspense, mystery, humor, danger and a rainbow of characters and landscapes converge in a masterfully crafted modern myth that awakens inner senses and leaves us hungry for Schizandra’s next journey!” –Karen Lang, Lemurian Stargate

“Superbly written, well-researched, fascinating, weird, suspenseful, playful and definitely entertaining.”  –Traci Moore, Editor, Monsoon Voices

More blurbs and reviews to come. To pre-order your autographed copy, please click here.

2012 and the Mayan Calendar: What’s Happening?

Lately, a lot of folks have been asking me what I believe will happen in the next few years. The short answer is that no one can tell you the exact scenario because it hasn’t played itself out yet. Too many choice points still exist to make a solid prediction.

The longer answer is that I have the advantage of having deep conversations with people from all over the world — on a regular basis. Such encounters give me a sense of what trends are coming and how the people creating those trends feel about them. What motivates these folks? How do the inspirations arrive? How do they fit together?

Some people feel quite scared about the prospects of 2012. They worry that the world’s about to end or that the Apocalypse looms large. I agree that change is coming. In fact, change has intensified over the last few years. But from where I sit, that change looks really good. So many of you are bringing amazing visions to fruition. So many of you have worked through or are in process of working through lifetimes of limitations in preparation to unleash yourselves to a previously unknown degree. I feel awe and excitement when I consider the sorts of things coming into our world!

A huge amount of love continues to sprout and grow on this planet. I feel it everyday during coaching sessions when people tell me how much they want to help people, animals or the world. I feel love from colleagues who have stepped into greater visibility so that they can share their messages of love and rejuvenation in larger and more influential ways. And I feel love in my own life as I see how years of synchronicity and service have begun to form a tapestry that “materializes” my deepest longings and dreams.

Good times are upon us! Times of change, yes, but these changes come from a place of love, faith and hope.

The number of people asking about 2012 has strengthened my resolve to get my novel Schizandra and the Gates of Mu out there sooner rather than later. This fictional series explores where we’re headed as a species, planet and galaxy, but it also offers many routes to get there. While I finish the final editing and submission process, I thought I’d share just a few of the resources I’ve found particularly interesting or relevant during the course of my research:

2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl by Daniel Pinchbeck.

I like to dive into this book “randomly” rather than reading it straight through. Daniel gives lots of history, personal experiences and science interwoven with ancient prophecy. I had already written or planned most of Schizandra and the Gates of Mu before reading 2012, but the book really resonated with some ideas coming through my novel.

Warning: it’s a dense book — definitely not a fluffy read. The prose will stun you, though. Daniel Pinchbeck grew up in NYC’s literary elite, and you can tell. His lyrical passages will coax your soul into a new awareness even if your mind wants to dig its heels into the old world’s ways.

 

Secrets of the Talking Jaguar by Martin Prechtel. I’m using this book more for background on book two, Schizandra and the Peruvian Jaguar, but I love Martin Prechtel’s writing! His true story reads like fiction, and you’ll find yourself breathing in the magic of the Andes and her people. This book provides insight into the descendents of those who created many of the 2012 prophecies.

 

Healing Crystals and Gemstones by Dr. Flora Pescheck-Bohmer and Gisela Schreiber. This book is not about 2012 either, but it does share some great background about crystals and gemstones, which help to raise vibrations into alignment with the coming shifts.

 

The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran. This classic continues to stand the test of time. Many of his verses speak even more strongly today than they did last century.

 

Abundance through Reiki by Paula Horan. I often recommend this book to Reiki students, because Paula Horan gives a 42-day method for bringing more Reiki into your life. Since Reiki is, by definition, universal life force energy, embracing more Reiki leads to greater flow and a sense of connection with everyone and everything in our world. When you feel connected, abundance comes naturally. Allowing yourself to flow in your natural state will help you to ride out whatever blessings or challenges come your way.

 

The Lazy Raw Foodist’s Guide by … me. 🙂 I wrote this little e-book because I found myself saying so many of the same things to so many clients. People kept having the same issues on a raw food journey, but I could not find one or two other raw food books that shared all that information. I wanted to offer an easy guide around the stumbling blocks.

I do not believe that everyone needs to turn to 100% raw foods in order to help humanity make its next shift; however, raw foods do offer one effective way of raising vibration to a higher level. This book also addresses the increased synchronicities andspirituality experienced by so many people on their raw journeys  — and why that matters. (Hint: the extra energy can work for or against you; The Lazy Raw Foodist’s Guide gives steps to harness your most positive energy.)

 

Lemuria and Atlantis by Shirley Andrews. This book provides shared experiences through past life memories, regressions and/or channeling regarding the lost continents of Lemuria and Atlantis. Whether you believe in either or both of these mystical lands, their energy pervades much of the changes of the last few years. Reading about these cultures — even if you think of them as fictional — will help to clarify your thoughts and feelings about today’s world. Atlantis in particular comes up often during Intuitive Life Path Assessments. The collective subconscious has a lot to say!

 

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell. Originally written as a marketing study, this book gives insight into how changes take place. How does an idea become a trend? How does a trend become a phenomenon? How do phenomena change our very reality? I highly recommend this book, especially for anyone who wonders how a single person or a small group can make an enormous contribution.

 

Well, that should keep everyone busy for awhile! I hope you enjoy the resources. 🙂 Once I know the price and estimated release date, I will start taking pre-orders for Schizandra and the Gtes of Mu. If you would like to get on the pre-order list, please email me your contact information: laura at lazyrawfoodist dot com. 

Many Blessings …

www.internationalrenaissancecoaching.com

Raw Food Novel Update

Wow, it’s been awhile! I have officially buried myself in editing for the past two weeks. I had entered “Schizandra and the Gates of Mu” into Amazon’s Breakthrough Novel Award Contest and then started having second thoughts.

For one, I found a few typos; more importantly, I decided I wanted to shift some plot elements, but I could no longer change my entry. I began to resent tying up my manuscript until June 30th if I advanced to the next round: tied up, but with no guarantee of any offer. Then I learned that the grand prize publishing contract might not be exactly what I’d imagined. I wish everyone else the best of luck, but I really wanted freedom for my manuscript.

Synchronicity intervened again! Apparently, something happened with the contest entries, and some excerpts disappeared, thereby keeping people from advancing into the later rounds. I don’t know whether my excerpt disappeared, or if someone didn’t like my pitch, or if my energy just pulled my entry right back out of the contest. In any case, to my great relief, I learned last week that I once again could play freely with my manuscript.

Because “Schizandra and the Gates of Mu” comes first in a 5-part series with a 2012 theme, I’ve decided to self-publish it this Spring though iUniverse. Originally, I had wanted to find a traditional publisher, but given that it’s already 2009 and average books take about a year to print even after being accepted by a publisher, I decided to release it myself. Instead of a “birthday publishing contract,” there’s now a strong possibility I will have a “birthday book.” 🙂 

Once I know pricing and approximate delivery dates, I’ll start taking preorders for autographed copies. To my knowledge, this represents the first novel ever to feature overtly raw foodist and vegan characters. Anyone who likes natural healing, astrology, numerology, flying, natural childbirth, synchronicity, massage, Reiki, Sedona and/or raw cacao will enjoy this tale. Here’s a teaser:

Legendary Sedona, ancient prophecy, a mysterious curse and a thirteen-year-old orphan with a cosmic destiny: Schizandra and the Gates of Mu tells the story of a sleeping teen who holds the key to human evolution. The galaxy itself depends on her awakening! Can a motley group of healers, relatives and friends overcome their pasts to save Schizandra? Will she survive her own mythic journey? The Celestine Prophecy meets Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Young adults and older readers will laugh, cry and shiver their way through this lively first of the Schizandra series.

 

Laura Bruno is a professional intuitive, Reiki Master Teacher and former Sedona resident. Known for her lighthearted approach to natural healing, Laura now offers those insights through fiction. She has lived and taught all over the United States, and currently resides in California with her husband Stephen.

 

OK, back to editing! Thanks to everyone for their excitement about this project. I love writing fiction, and I’m so excited to introduce Schizandra.  

ABNA Contest: Personal Anecdotes

As part of Amazon’s 2009 Breakthrough Novel Award Contest, contestants can share the story-behind-the-story of their novel’s creation … in 300 words or less. The public will only get to see the top 500 excerpts after March 16, during which time they may or may not view the novel’s background. People keep popping onto this site while searching for ABNA, so I thought I’d post my personal anecdotes here:

 

         Four months before starting a doctoral program in English Literature, a 1998 brain injury left me severely disabled. I lost the ability to read, along with my rational side. I needed to sleep and meditate most of the day just to keep my migraines in check. Although devastating to my intended career as an English professor, this experience awakened other parts of my brain. Synchronicity, uncanny intuition, and mythology replaced plans, logic, and a highly analytic side. Unable to read print, I learned to “read” in other ways; the world became my text. Years of art history, literary criticism, philosophy, and Biblical exegesis suddenly seemed key to navigating the “real world.” My quest for recovery also introduced me to alternative medicine and spiritual healing.

            I won a small insurance settlement — on my birthday — in 2001, but I still needed to find some way to support myself. My Seattle doctor offered me a part time job working as an Office Assistant/Medical Intuitive Consultant. I honed my Medical Intuitive skills on his clients in exchange for him teaching me his fifty-year’s worth of herbal knowledge. One herb stuck in my brain: schizandra. I researched its adaptogenic power to heal anything from asthma to impotence to hypo- and hyperthyroid. Unbidden, two characters named Schizandra and Ginger appeared, and I envisioned a family of women healers named for herbs.

SCHIZANDRA AND THE GATES OF MU revealed itself sporadically over seven years. A move to Sedona gave me the setting, and my meditation practice and Medical Intuitive/Life Coaching business provided rich fodder. Synchronicity plays such a huge role in my life that I found the fantasy elements easiest to pen. I finished writing on a key date in the novel, and ABNA’s prize date — May 22 — is my birthday!          

www.internationalrenaissancecoaching.com

Related posts here and here.

ABNA Update: My Novel “Pitch”

A normal Sedona school day in 2001 unravels fast when thirteen-year-old Schizandra faints. Nothing wakes her, and mysterious symbols and messages appear when anyone tries to help. lunar eclipse has activated her astrological chart, marking Schizandra to fulfill an ancient prophecy regarding 2012 and the Mayan Calendar. If she revives, Schizandra will spark human evolution into a new age.

SCHIZANDRA AND THE GATES OF MU follows her mythic journey and the awakening that confirms her destiny. While she remains in a coma, the veil separating conscious and unconscious worlds is translucent. The lives of a superstitious helicopter pilot, a midwife grandmother, cheerleader friends, talking crystals, twin spinster reflexologists, a lovesick nerd, an erudite frog king and a raw-cacao-loving Lemurian queen all converge within Sedona’s legendary beauty and mystique. This fantasy explores the tensions between rational and spiritual, shame and freedom, death and rebirth, as all heal through their interactions with Schizandra and each other. 

Written by a professional intuitive, Reiki Master Teacher and former Sedona resident, SCHIZANDRA AND THE GATES OF MU presents a natural healing extravaganza. Most fantasies go far beyond what people can imagine in their own lives, but supernatural twists in this book spring from solid research. People want to believe in the unexplained. Each year, four million tourists visit Sedona seeking spiritual renewal; alternative medicine has become the new mainstream; even Oprah advocates higher consciousness. With series potential, this 60,000-word novel offers crossover appeal for young adults and older readers. It’s THE CELESTINE PROPHECY meets ALICE’S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND. The plot surprises. The dialogue flies. Its characters will especially delight teens, caregivers, mystics, misfits, literary nerds and chocoholics. To a troubled world, SCHIZANDRA AND THE GATES OF MU brings hope. 

………………………………………………………………..

For those of you who don’t already know about the 2009 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest, it’s Amazon’s second annual writing contest for full length novels. The competition runs from February 8, 2009 when entries closed, until May 22, 2009, when the winner receives a $25,000 book contract from Penguin Books. Along the way, the field of 10,000 or so contestants gets whittled down to 2,000, then 500, then 100 and finally to 3, at which point Amazon account holders (anyone who’s ever purchased something from Amazon.com) can vote on their choice for the winner.  For the first two levels, something known as “the pitch” plays an all-important role.  Judges will read the pitches and decide who gets to advance to a level of having an actual excerpt of the book read. Advance again, and you get your whole manuscript read and reviewed by Publisher’s Weekly. 

Because real readers get to vote on the final 3 excerpts, ABNA does run a bit like a literary American Idol. I decided to enter after a series of bizarre synchronicities, which you can read here. In any case, I’ve agreed to post occasional updates as the contest progresses.  I thought I’d share my pitch, just for fun. I’d welcome feedback from anyone who cares to comment.

 

 

www.internationalrenaissancecoaching.com

(For those of you who are fans of Nestor the rabbit, she also makes a cameo appearance!) 

Synchronicity, Seattle, Schizandra and Amazon’s 2009 Breakthrough Novel Award Contest

Anyone who reads this blog or knows me also knows that synchronicity plays a dramatic role in my daily life.  The “coincidences” happen so often that my hubby and I joke about the phenomenon.  When I walk into the room, T.V. characters start talking about being vegetarian, doing a cleanse or eating only raw foods–even if the plot has nothing to do with any of those topics!  You might not know some of the following stories, though, or how they relate to Amazon, so I decided to share a little background.

While recovering from my devastating 1998 brain injury, I reached a point where I had run out of funds.  I had a nasty Worker’s Comp lawsuit going on, which looked like it was going nowhere soon.  I had already sold my car to pay my rent, and I was still unable to work.  Things looked bleak. 

In the midst of this, I started getting nightly “instructions” to move to Seattle by August 1, 2001 so that I could meet my future husband.  If I didn’t move by that date, I’d miss the boat entirely!  Nevermind that my lease went until September.  Nevermind that I had no way of paying June or July’s rent, let alone making a cross-country move to a place I’d only briefly visited!  Every night I would dream of my future husband’s eyes and a long list of characteristics by which I would recognize him.

At this point, I questioned my sanity, but without a rational mind, leaps of faith somehow made more sense.  I began bargaining for signs.  “If I’m really meant to move to Seattle, then I want to be sure.  If I’m meant to go by August 1, then I need something big: huge.  I want my Worker’s Comp settlement to come through on my birthday.  If that happens, then I’ll know these instructions are for real.”

From that day forward, I started talking about “my birthday settlement.”  People would shake their heads and say, “Poor Laura, she has a brain injury! She’s totally lost touch with reality!  Laura, don’t ruin your birthday by setting yourself up for disappointment.”  No matter what they or my lawyer said, though, I couldn’t shake the idea that I’d get a Worker’s Comp settlement on my birthday.  Even when May 22, 2001’s workday came and went, I continued talking about it that night.

The following morning, my Worker’s Comp attorney woke me up with a phone call about “an interesting conversation with the insurance company late yesterday afternoon.  Out of nowhere, they’ve decided to settle for more than we even thought we could expect.  You should have the check by late July.”  Vindicated, I made plans to move to Seattle, and the check arrived on July 28, the day before my movers took off, and I flew across the country.

The first weeks in Seattle felt wonderful because of the beauty and long, sunny days.  Summer in Seattle rocks!  But towards the end of August, I started to question myself.  Just where was this mysterious husband who needed to be met in August rather than September?  Had I made up the whole thing? 

And then it happened:  on August 24th, my parents’ wedding anniversary and the day after Stephen’s birthday, we met.  He had planned to leave Seattle in September. That meeting involved a whole slew of other synchronicities, but suffice to say we connected immediately through our love of writing and literature.  I had hauled certain books all the way from Evanston, Illinois, just because something told me to keep them–even though at the time, I could not read!  Stephen told me he was writing a historical fiction novel on Marie Antoinette; the books in question were all about the French Revolution.

When Stephen learned how much I wanted to write, he did not accept my (in my mind legitimate) excuse that I could no longer read for more than 5-20 minutes per day. He just said, “So, write poetry!” I did, and when I showed him, he said, “These are definitely publishable.  If you send these out, I guarantee you’ll be published by the end of the year.”  Hello?  Who guarantees that sort of thing?  It was October! 

Did he help me find the places for submission when I complained I couldn’t read the Writer’s Market Guide to Poetry? Nope. He told me to use my intuition and just pick some places. Having a brain injury and no rational side, I thought this sounded just crazy enough to work, and guess what?  It did! In December 2001, I had two poems published by a small, but national poetry magazine.  

Stephen and I eventually got married– on my brother’s birthday in 2003.  I won an Animal Communication Essay contest and started publishing online articles and essays in literary magazines. I healed completely; he caught Lyme Disease and retired from Life Coaching; he started a photography career, and I took over his coaching business; I published If I Only Had a Brain Injury; he healed enough to start his intuitive work again.  During this time, we moved all over the Southwest and West Coast, eventually landing just north of San Francisco.

This past winter, we began talking about places to live when our lease ends.  Having both recovered from massive health crises, we also talked about life goals we still had yet to meet.  I’ve published two non-fiction books (the brain injury one and The Lazy Raw Foodist’s Guide).  Still, I’ve always dreamed of writing a novel.  Even when I thought I’d be an English Professor, I always envisioned myself as a novelist first. 

We talked about possibly moving back to Seattle, where we met.  At some point, I said, “I don’t care whether we move there or just visit, but I see myself in Seattle on my birthday this year.  If we’re moving, I want to be there by Summer Solstice, so either way, let’s make a trip there for my birthday.”  We didn’t give it much more thought.  Then, in a separate conversation, I said, “I really want a book contract for my novel (Schizandra and the Gates of Mu) by my birthday.  (For those who don’t know about this project, it’s The Celestine Prophecy meets Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, with a diverse cast of characters, including a raw cacao loving Lemurian queen.  To my knowledge, this is the first novel to discuss raw cacao and veganism in an obvious, open way. It also features Reiki, shapeshifting, reflexology, natural childbirth, astrology and other spiritual or natural healing topics.)

Back in January, I had planned two classes and a talk in Seattle, which got cancelled due to this winter’s bizarre weather there.  Because my calendar was empty, that weekend gave me the perfect concentrated time to finish the last few scenes of Schizandra and the Gates of Mu.  I completed the manuscript on a very significant date in the plot, which seemed fitting for a book about synchronicities and healing.

Two weekends ago, something similar happened.  I had made plans to visit some friends (Erin and Steve Pavlina) coming in from out of town.  We were all looking forward to a great visit at Cafe Gratitude, plus hanging out in San Francisco.  Out of “nowhere,” a family crisis arose.  It wasn’t clear that I would need to do anything, but I did need to be “on call” and ready for action.  I spent most of the time I would have been visiting with friends in front of the computer, trying to figure out what to do with Schizandra: the book is done; it has a Mayan Calendar theme, and it’s meant to be a series.  How would that play into a crumbled publishing industry not wanting to take chances on new writers?  I couldn’t afford to let it sit in the slush pile for four years.  Should I self-publish my novel even though I never meant to do it that way?  Should I release it as an ebook?  These questions and others plagued me that Saturday.

The next day, I received an email from Book Surge, a self-publishing company I had just begun to research.  The email mentioned the 2009 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest, with its grand prize of a $25,000 publishing contract with Penguin Books.  “Cool!”  I thought. But it got better:  the grand prize winner will be announced in Seattle on May 22, 2009–my birthday!

I got started right away.  The contest requires some pretty intense pitch-writing and other prep work, plus I still needed to edit and format my manuscript.  Starting that weekend gave me just enough time to finish all the submission requirements to enter when the contest opened on February 2, 2009.  People can enter the contest until February 8, 2009 or until they receive 10,000 entries, whichever comes first. 

Anyway, it’s a long shot with many rounds of elimination, but I’m a huge fan of synchronicity, and this would be one heckuva publishing story if it happens!  Best wishes to everyone who enters.  I’ll keep you posted.  Thanks to everyone whose journeys and spiritual service have helped inspire me along the way.

 

www.internationalrenaissancecoaching.com

www.lazyrawfoodist.com

www.ifionlyhadabraininjury.com