Apr 05

news on books, fam and life, and some thoughts on finding happiness.

 Well hello again from Afghani land! It’s been an interesting few days and I have much to report on my doings and what’s happening at camp Pew right now. On the family front everyone’s trying to get along until I can get home in mid-May. My mom has been there for a month now and has done an outstanding job getting everything back on track. The boys ended up passing their last quarter but only just. The 4th started with better habits and arguments but everyone seems to be getting in line and doing what they’re supposed to do. As of today she needed to go home and get a break for a couple of weeks, so my mother in law who is also awesome Wendy is on her way out to take a turn helping keep everyone moving forward. I can never thank these two enough for what they’ve done in helping me with my family and my career. The military doesn’t look too kindly on soldiers who have to leave combat zones for family issues that should be taken care of before deployment. But everything has been handled and I was able to stay and finish my tour, earning my promotion and gaining experience that I sorely needed to understand what this job is really all about. I’m especially proud of my daughter and eldest child Laynee, she’s made National Junior Honor Society and gotten the all A honor roll twice now, working on her third. Also she finished her basketball season and did very well. My boy Jaxon is starting boy scouts and is excited about that, he’s trying to fix his grades and wants to get into some more plays and musicals as soon as possible. He is also going to start some sports this spring we hope and get to making new friends. He starts middle school next year and he’s happy about that too as he gets to pick and instrument and play in the band like his big sister. My Evan is still a happy little guy and wants to play baseball if we can sign him up for it. He’s stopped trying to get out of school and is doing much better in his classes. He’ll be our little guy for a little bit longer being the only one in elementary school next year.
With the home front back under control and having replacement help already scheduled to come help until I can get home I’ve turned my mind back a little to my writing. The new WIP is moving along. In Achilles I’ve started the battle for the beaches of Troy and it’s exhilarating to write. I feel like I’m flying on a hit every time I start the radio calls and the description of what it feels like on a CH-47 on approach to an air assault landing. So if you like realistic military action you’ll love this book when I get it out this fall. (More to come about this)
Now onto books, as I have already announced I’m going to independently publish all my books by end of august, at least that’s the plan. So I have a lot to do! First I think I’m going to set up my own house for publishing. Not that I’m taking on more authors it just for some reason adds credence to a published work. I’m excited about the opportunity to start a new venture. I don’t know where this idea will lead but I’m intrigued by the challenge. Now onto books, Transition Man is still available through Little Acorns for now, I am planning to re-release it under my own name and Kristina is being such an awesome friend allowing it to stay up for now. I’m working hard on it with my wizard Elizabeth Delena Rosa to get a revamped cover and a minor change to the format, otherwise it’ll be the same book. Look for it in May. That brings me to this summer. Right now the plan is moving ahead well for a book release every month of the summer. In May we’ll have the re-release of T-Man, in June True Immortals Genesis which is at the Beta reader now and the editor is happily awaiting my revised script the cover is done and so is the blurb so it should be out on time. In July 1 year to the month if I can manage it will be the release of the second book in the Griffin Chronicles series Twisted Souls! I have actually had several of my readers express interest in reading this book and aren’t happy I made them wait this long for the release, but the cover’s done, the blurb and the Beta reader is finished I should have this to the editor within a couple of weeks of my return to the states so it should be on time as well. In August I’ll have a new type of book to release. It’s not a new genre I’m not that ingenious but it’s new to me. The Sword of Achilles is scheduled right now for release sometime in August. My next post will be about my progress on this book so no worries you’ll be kept up to date. I’ve been working on a concept for the cover of this book and it’ll be amazing. I haven’t gotten it to a beta reader yet because it’s still in progress but I’ll get it done on time as well I think.
That’s all the news about books. This post is not too dramatic it’s simply about finding contentment in life where ever you are and whatever you’re doing. I promise it’s not going to be very long as the news portion is way long. I have found that difficult circumstances arise all around us and at different times and in different degrees. One of the most popular comments I hear and I’m sure you have too is ‘when I only get _____ I’ll be happy’. The overall truth of any life is that hardship comes no matter what and if a person is waiting for some benchmark to happen to find happiness then it will never come. In my experience there is always happiness to be found. I have a friend who recently lost someone dear to their heart and helping her through this crisis has been hard for me to watch her suffer, but even more devastating for her to learn to live again. I personally have had my whole life turned upside down by economic changes that cost me a successful business. When it collapsed I lost my cars, house and fell into a bankruptcy that cost me credit and confidence. I re-entered the military to try to find a simpler way to rebuild my life and so far it’s been fine. But through all that I’ve been able to find happiness, and I believe that my friend who’s grieving, and everyone else can as well and it’s a simple principle, but a difficult realization.
First there is what you believe in. most of my friends and acquaintances believe in God, I’m a Latter Day Saint or Mormon, and most of the people I know are of some type of Christian faith. This belief in something greater than one’s self is crucial to finding happiness in everyday life. It’s not easy to get up and do the daily grind, get home to a house that needs cleaned a dinner that needs cooked and homework that needs done all before you get to have some time for yourself but that’s life. If you include what God has said about family and children and spouses you’ll find that in that simple framework is where true joy lies. Sometimes it takes a paradigm shift to understand that in the simple struggle of day-to-day is where the most rewarding work takes place. Imagine you are an architect designing and building the greatest structure the world has ever seen and you spend months and years of your life accomplishing this work. Then at your speech when the work is complete you have no one to thank for this great accomplishment! No spouse next to you on the platform, no kids waving at you from the crowd, no comments by your folks going ‘that’s my boy or my girl’. There is only you and you did all this work to feel empty inside. So the simple-ness of life is the richness in life. Plus when you put things into an eternal perspective, like what do I want out of life? Is it money and fame or is it to return to my God again with my family by my side? If it’s the later then even hard times can encourage us to do greater things, like make it to baseball practice on time.( I’ll have another post on religion later.)
Second there is the understanding that ‘this too shall pass’. I had a problem in my early life, I wanted to get married in our Temple. Most people know about Mormon Temples and you have to meet a certain standard to have that honor. My bride and I were worthy of the honor, but because of some past issues that were unclear at the time we were asked to postpone or get married outside the temple and get sealed inside a year later. I was devastated and the reason I was denied this honor was no fault of my own. However I loved my bride and still do and was willing to endure the trial in order to have her in my life. We decided to get married and go to the Temple a year later, it was a hard decision but one I have never regretted. As I struggled with what I felt was a disgrace on me and my new wife I learned that we were both not to blame and the person who was, was being held accountable. But having gone ahead with our wedding we now had to wait the year regardless. At the same time members of my own family were openly hostile toward my new wife and encouraged me to leave her and find someone else, less than 6 months after I was wed. My anger swelled inside me and I wanted to lash out at those that were making my life difficult for their own gain. A wise leader in the church counseled me, ‘he said all things heal in time’ and that if I wanted to I could find happiness in what I had instead of what I didn’t. He said I could look at the goal of a Temple sealing as a time to study and understand what it really meant, not just that I had been taught that my whole life and felt it was what was expected of me. I could appreciate it more because of what I was going through. I used his advice and found happiness in spending time with my new sweetheart discussing what our future meant. We’d go on long walks and find peace and contentment with each other. We discovered that we were expecting our first little miracle and that added the mortar to solidify our happiness in what we had been blessed with.
No matter how hard life might get we can find happiness in the little things and find that our lives provide us with all the meaning we need simply by looking for it instead of dwelling on what isn’t or is lost. This way of thinking doesn’t guarantee we’ll always be happy, that we won’t have hard times or hard days. It does mean that in the overall scheme when we look back on our lives, we’ll find that we were happy and found joy in doing those things expected of us by our maker and those we love.
Well that’s it for now, as always I’m proud of my kids and my wife. Play to win! And you stay classy planet earth.

About the author

Jon Pew

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