Today would have been Michael’s 51st birthday. So it’s a good day to roll out some titles.
First, I have taken the e-book plunge, as I threatened a couple of months ago. I am using Smashwords as a hosting site and vendor – yes, there is a lot of junk there, but it *seems* to be functional, is in the process of partnering with Barnes and Noble and other distributors and so on.
You can download a title in just about any format, suitable for any device. You can download a plain old HTML or plain text file and read it on your computer or print it out. You can download a pdf and do the same or read it on an ereader. You can download it in formats good for reading on your phone or Kindle. As I’ve mentioned, it’s not my thing (yet), but a growing number of people are indeed, using ebooks and are reading books on their smart phones, so here we go
The first title is a short booklet of Advent meditations, so you can download it for..$0.00.
You can download it here.
He wrote it a few years ago, so the entries don’t match *exactly* to the Mass readings on every single day. Most of them do except for the feast days like Immaculate Conception, which falls on a different day during that particular “week of Advent.” Sure, I could have rewritten it and written a new entry..but that misses the point. You can cope.
(For the curious, the cover image is at Mount Etna. The photograph only barely does the scene justice – the black rocky volcanic soil dotted with vegetation, the little shrine sticking out over the hill, all of it shrouded in fog.)
The next one is called The Fourth Rule: St. Benedict’s Guide to Life. The Fourth Rule of St. Benedict is composed of 73 Scripture-based counsels. Michael wrote a brief reflection on each of those counsels – some are longer than others, but most are just about a page long.
You can download it here for $2.99.
The cover image on this one is from Gethsemani Abbey in Kentucky – photograph taken by Michael.
I’m not going to do print editions of these – it’s really not worth the hassle to me at this point (it would require re-formatting, doing back matter and covers that could actually be used in a print edition, an interior design….), and they are short enough so that reading them on a screen is not too taxing.
As I said, you can download Kindle-able editions on Smashwords, but I have done versions for the Kindle that will be available through Amazon, once they are approved in a few days. Why, if it’s available on Smashwords? So they will be in the Amazon system and be searchable there.
And for Croatian readers….Michael’s 2 pocket guides he wrote for OSV have been published by a Croatian Catholic publisher:
The Pocket Guide to the Mass
The Pocket Guide to Confession
(And if you want English versions…start with the page I’ve done on the How-To Book of the Mass…)
Don’t forget the Christmas Joy book – the cover is over there on the right, and to order, go here.
So, that’s the best I can do for a birthday gift this year…that and focus my heart on raising his boys to live in joyful discipleship and the love of life God has given us, for however long it may last on this earth.
I have, of course, many more thoughts, but they’re not bloggable. They’re write-able, and they are being written, but they keep developing and evolving as time goes on, so the immediacy of the internet doesn’t seem like the best place for them right now. They’re good thoughts.
The title of this post? This Billy Joe Shaver song, sung in this clip by Jimmie Dale Gilmore. The link takes you to YouTube, but there’s no visual – it’s just a clip of the song, with Gilmore introducing it at a tribute concert. The backstory is that Shaver wrote this song for his wife, Brenda, whom he was married and remarried to a couple of times – they had quite the up-and-down relationship. He cared for as she battled the cancer which eventually took her in 1999.
So I’ve been listening to that.
And this (It’s not my favorite version – I just like Billy Joe straight up, without Big & Rich – especially that stupid coda. But it’s an enjoyable video.)
And this – Warren Zevon, one of Michael’s favorites, absolutely. I’ve been listening to this one, too. It fits.
That’s the soundtrack for the last couple of days.
And the script to go along with the soundtrack? The Gospel reading today at Mass was what it seems to me the Gospel reading is every other time I go to Mass these days. It must be my imagination. Or something.
Jesus stopped and ordered them to bring the man to him, and when he came up, asked him,“What do you want me to do for you?’ ‘Sir,’ he replied ‘let me see again.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Receive your sight. Your faith has saved you.’ And instantly his sight returned and he followed him praising God, and all the people who saw it gave praise to God for what had happened.
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