Saturday, January 30, 2010

Words of wisdom

Words of wisdom from Steve Rubin, Fast Carrier Pictures:

"Perseverance is critical. I look at Hollywood like Omaha Beach. If you sit shivering in front of those big obstacles, trying to avoid rifle, machine gun and mortar fire, you're going to end up dead. The only way is to make your way slowly but surely to the seawall. The seawall. The seawall. That's the mantra. And, you know what, it worked."

Steven Jay Rubin, January 30, 2010

Friday, January 29, 2010

Movie contracts APPROVED!

On January 28th, 2010, my publisher (Sourcebooks) APPROVED the English language AND Japanese language movie agreements, opening the door for pre-production to begin. Yes, we now officially have TWO MOVIE PROJECTS underway!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Missing Montana Snow.

We had a bit of snow here in the Antelope Valley of California. I had a major "homesick" episode - missing Montana State University and Bozeman, Montana. I guess, deep down inside, I'm a Montanan at heart.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Martin Luther King Day

In remembrance of MARTIN LUTHER KING, Jr.

Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it. Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it. Hatred darkens life; love illumines it.

~ Martin Luther King Jr.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Mooney Column: January 11, 2010

Antelope Valley Press
Edward Mooney, Jr.
January 11, 2010

Title: Casting a line into time passages.

My daughters and my son, tonight, while standing by my sink in the bathroom, I fiddled with a Christmas gift – a no-name digital music player. No, it’s not well known, but the music is beautiful. Finally, the light came on and everything worked. As I looked into the mirror familiar sounds flowed into my ears.

“Night like a river beginning to flow
I felt the beat of my mind
Go drifting into time passages”

As I gazed into my own face, a shock ran through my body. My eyes widened. I was back in the little bathroom of my apartment at Montana State University, where I first heard these notes. This was not how I appeared the first time I heard Al Stewart’s song.

“The years run too short and the days too fast”

Something dawned on me. I reached up to the top of my head. You see me as bald. You will never know how that little lock of hair in front used to curl upward, or how much I miss it. I shuddered. Where did the years go?

“The things you lean on
Are the things that don't last”

My hand gently slid down to the side of my eye. Those wrinkles weren’t there in 1978. I wondered how many tears that eye has shed; tears you can never know about. I hope whenever you look at me you’ll see more than the wrinkles. I hope you’ll see that the lines are reminders of all the late nights when you were sick, and the rays of the sun as I toiled on our lawn.

I thought for sure I’d be young forever, but there was no way I could convince myself that what I was looking at was a young face anymore. I gingerly stroked my gray hairs. A tear struggled forward.

“Well, it's just now
And then my line gets cast into these
Time passages”

I used to wonder why old men were so obsessed with the past; now I understand. We’re reminded that most of our lives are now in the past. Those deep lines beside my mouth were not there when I was twenty. I didn’t look like this. As I gazed at a photo of you, I realized that you, too, will have to confront this someday. And, yes, my parents must have looked into a mirror and felt this way. Another tear welled up.

“There's something back there that you left behind”

The memories flooded in. I closed my eyes and dug deep to find the faces of my mother and my father. There they were, as in a fog, far away. My Noni was there, too, behind them. I could almost smell her lasagna. I wanted to call out to them.

“A girl comes towards you
You once used to know
You reach out your hand
But you're all alone
In those time passages”

As I opened my eyes the light from the mirror glinted on the streams of water dripping from my face. Not smoothly, as they would on your face, but with interruptions from wrinkles.

“Buy me a ticket on the last train home tonight”

It may sound strange, but I write this hoping you’ll save these words for some distant time when you’re in your fifties, and I’ll be one of those distant, and wrinkled, faces, in the deep fog of your past.

Please remember that I wasn’t all bad. I was just as human as you are. I wanted to be loved. I wanted to feel safe. I had dreams. I wasn’t just the man who said “no” when you wanted a new toy. I had the same limitations with money and time as you probably will have. I had the same pain denying a child something. As hard as it is to believe, I had the same struggles as a teen that you experienced. A girl once broke my heart.

One of the mysteries of life is that as we age we see our parents in a different light. I worry. How will you remember me? Will you see me differently?

Don’t let these time passages rob you of our connection. Even in the fog of your future memories, know that I would be there if I could. The smile you’ll see, in your mind’s eye, will be real – telling you that I still love you, even if I’m gone.

I’d stay with you a bit more, but time passages won’t allow it. The sun’s rising.

(Acknowledging Al Stewart’s song, “Time Passages.”)

Thought for the Week: "We never know the love of a parent till we become parents ourselves.” - Henry Ward Beecher

Thursday, January 14, 2010

DAR Teacher of the Year - California

I am deeply honored that the California State Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution have named me the 2010 DAR History Teacher of the Year. My dossier was sent to Washington, DC, for national judging. I represent California.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Sneak peak: back cover

Here's a sneak peak at the back cover of THE PEARLS OF THE STONE MAN from SOURCEBOOKS. Thank you, Sourcebooks! A job well done! I love what their readers said!

AV Press Column 01/04/2010

Antelope Valley Press
Edward Mooney, Jr.
January 4, 2010

Title: Here's a left handed "Happy New Year!"

"Edward, come to bed! It's after midnight!" Carrie whispered while standing in the doorway, wearing her light pink robe. I glanced up just long enough to notice her.

"I can't! Bill Warford is expecting my column in the morning and I'm stuck!" I replied while trying to adjust the little round band around the face of the watch on my left arm.

"So what are you stuck on?" Carrie replied with a huff.

"I want to write about 'New Year's Resolutions', but not about diets or being nice to your mother-in-law," I said as I pushed harder on the metal watch part. Darn, I thought, I don't even know the name of this part of the watch and I can't get it to work. It just won't turn!

"Well, you COULD be nicer to my mother." Carrie trailed off. I looked up and felt my eyes getting narrower.

"It's already been done. You don't understand. I want to give something to my readers that lies beneath all those things we resolve to do. I want to give them something that might change their lives." I pushed on my watch and scraped my finger; those little serrations bite!


"I've been standing here for five minutes and you've been obsessed with that watch. What in the world are you doing?" Carrie walked over and looked at my raw finger.

"The little doo-dad around the face, the movable part with the minute numbers on it, is slightly off. See, the triangle on the top is pointing to 2 minutes before 12!" I pointed. Carrie stared and shook her head.

"How long have you been fixated on that?" She asked in a tone of voice only a husband could fully understand.

"Carrie, I try and write and I see the triangle is a little off. I get distracted and have to fix it, but..." I pushed hard to the right on the metal band, but, once again, it would not move, "...I can't get it to straighten out." I let out a sigh.

"Well, have you tried just taking the watch off and writing without it?"

"Uh, well, um, yes, but I knew it was there. I couldn't just drop it." I felt a bit sheepish.

"How about writing your column about being less obsessive in 2010?" Carrie snickered.

"Funny. You just don't get it. I can't push it two 'ticks' to the right, and I can't figure out why. This stupid thing must be broken. I need a new watch."

"It keeps time fine, but the little triangle is two minutes off and you need a new watch? You're willing to spend money for that? It must be a 'righty' thing." Carrie loves to find any opportunity to push how superior lefties supposedly are. I decided to shoot back.

"Yeah, well, I've been trying to move it to the right, but let's check your lefty idea," I sarcastically grumbled as I pushed the metal band the opposite way. It moved.

Click. Click. I was stunned. No matter how hard I pushed to the right, it would not budge. But to the left, the metal band clicked nicely, one minute at a time. I clicked it 56 more times and the triangle was straight up on the 12.

"Close your mouth," Carrie said. I was in shock.

It was then that it dawned on me. So many times I absolutely, positively, completely know I am right, and I'm willing to sacrifice hours and dollars proving it (such as wanting to fix or buy a new watch), when all I needed was a new perspective. I shuddered when I wondered if I do this in other things and don't even realize it. I wasn't about to ask Carrie.

It was at that very moment that this column was born. This year, I resolve to consider that someone else's perspective could be the better one, even if it seems stupid or completely unthinkable to me at the time. Maybe my rigidity costs me in ways I've never noticed.

Won't you consider this idea? Happy New Year, Antelope Valley!

Thought for the YEAR: "For money you can have everything it is said. No that is not true. You can buy food, but not appetite; medicine, but not health; soft beds, but not sleep; knowledge but not intelligence; glitter, but not comfort; fun, but not pleasure; acquaintances, but not friendship; servants, but not faithfulness; grey hair, but not honor; quiet days, but not peace. The shell of all things you can get for money. But not the kernel. That cannot be had for money."

- Arne Garborg, writer (1851-1924)

Edward Mooney, Jr., a Palmdale author, is a teacher at Quartz Hill High School.