Monday, March 1, 2021

Live Chat - The Mandalorian and The Chosen with Scott Kelly and Danielle Pajak

Discussing The Mandalorian and The Chosen LIVE! Basically a Phoenician Rises Broadcast or Podcast. I hope you enjoy and please share your own thoughts in the comments!

My Journey in Korean Drama Part 8: (True Beauty -- GRWM style!)

Hi all! I’m back with my latest K-Drama chat all about the series TRUE BEAUTY. This video is a little different because it's also a GRWM (Get Ready With Me) style just for fun!

Friday, February 5, 2021

Happy Valentine's Day Giveaway!

I am hosting a special Valentine's giveaway! I am giving away two sets of both my books to two winners in the continental US. Entering is very simple! Please watch this video to learn more. But that's not all... 

 ...BOTH my books are going to be free in eBook form over the next two weeks as well!  

 Chivalry's Children - Free on Amazon Kindle - Tuesday February 2 - Saturday February 6 

 The Drum Symbol - Free on Amazon Kindle - Wednesday February 10 - Sunday February 14

Quick Update About My Fundraiser For Lebanon! (December 29, 2020)


Thursday, December 24, 2020

My Journey in Korean Drama: Part Seven (WEIGHTLIFTING FAIRY KIM BOK-JOO)

Merry Christmas, all! 

Back again with another K-Drama review about Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo. Please excuse my froggy voice, I hadn't had my caffeine yet before making this video haha.  

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

I AM - A 2020 Meditation

Hello, folks. In America, a lot of people have been in a state of constant anxiety and unrest. Last night, I took a walk and looked to the stars, moon, Mars & Venus above for comfort and inspiration--as I often do--and these words came to me. I recorded them on my phone then re-recorded on a better device afterward. They are coming from a Christian faith perspective, but whether or not you share my faith, you may find it soothing anyway. I just felt like I should make a video and share it to help spread some sense of peace and calm today. Much love to you all. ♥  

Music in this Video:
"Contact" by The Tower of Light
YouTube Audio Library

I did not create them, nor do I own them. I am using them for artistic purposes only.

Monday, November 2, 2020

My Journey in Korean Drama: Part Six (FLOWER OF EVIL)

I’m back with my latest K-Drama edition. I am joined by a special guest, Jennifer Downer, who introduced me to K-Drama in the first place. Today we are talking about the amazing series FLOWER OF EVIL, which was released this year. 

Monday, October 12, 2020

Help Me, Help Lebanon

My historical fiction novel– featuring the merging of Irish & Lebanese culture–is out now and part of an important fundraiser! Through October 31, 2020 - all my royalties from purchases will be given to private charity to aid in the recovery and restoration of Beirut from the massive explosion on August 4, 2020. ❤️📚📖

#Beirut #BeirutExplosion #Lebanon #Lebanese #RebuildBeirut #Ireland #Irish #Celtic #dancing #culture #indiepublish #indieauthor #indieauthorsofinstagram #historicalfiction #romance #amreading #readersofinstagram #read #multicultural #bookstagram #books #booklover #womenwhowrite

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Adoration - The Short Film

 After over a year of waiting, and intense edits, ADORATION is finally here! This short film was written and produced by myself in collaboration with a talented cast and crew here in my home state of Arizona. I hope one day to make it into a full-length feature! So please support indie film by giving this a thumbs up and sharing. Thank you for watching!  

"After being wounded by hunters, a vampire takes shelter in a secluded desert mission where he and a newly veiled nun find themselves stuck together for the night and share an enlightening conversation."


Thursday, July 23, 2020

My Journey in Korean Drama: Part Five (MISAENG: INCOMPLETE LIFE and KING: ETERNAL MONARCH)

Hi all! I’m back with my latest K-Drama edition all about Misaeng: Incomplete Life and King: Eternal Monarch. What did you think of these series? Let me know below!

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Our Coming Renaissance (or Why 2020 Doesn't Suck)

Pain, death, glory, rebirth. It's all coming, creatives. I believe the trials of recent months mean so much more than we know. (Sorry for the exhausted vocal fry haha).

Friday, May 15, 2020

My Journey in Korean (Asian) Drama: Part Four - KINGDOM & THE GHOST BRIDE

My fourth edition in my series of Asian (mostly Korean) drama reviews!

This time it is Korea’s Kingdom and Malaysia/China’s The Ghost Bride. I review the book too.

Friday, April 10, 2020

Kahlil Gibran and the most beautiful Good Friday words ever written...

Some of you may or may not know this, but I am a great lover of Kahlil Gibran. Perhaps it's the fellow Lebanese heart, but his impeccable wording and way of looking at the world make me feel understood. I am a fan of Middle Eastern poetry in general, from Rumi, to King David and his son Solomon too.

For some reason, in my many years of reading over Gibran's works, I never put together that he was also a visual artist! Sadly, many people don't talk about his artwork, and while it may not be as lastingly memorable as someone like Michelangelo or DaVinci, it's still worth studying and understanding. To me, his work is like a combination of two other artists I love--William Blake and Vincent Van Gogh.

I wanted to create a space here on my blog, in honor of Good Friday, to share one of his most exquisitely written pieces, The Crucified. All the artwork shown here is his as well. Gibran wrote on faith as well as just observations on life in general. Though The Prophet is his most widely known and beloved work, I submit that if you have no ready anything else of his, you do. His romantic verses are unmatched and his innate wisdom of the layers in our every day world will make you stop everything you're doing and really think. In a time when we are all put on a halt anyway, what have you got to lose?

I also recommend checking out the 2014 animated film The Prophet, based on his book and currently available to stream on Netflix. Unfortunately, the in-between-sequences-parts are kind of meh, but I still highly recommend you watch just for the stunning animated sequences of Kahlil Gibran's words. It's like a mini Lebanese Fantasia!

Anyway, without further ado...

The Crucified (written on Good Friday)

By, Kahlil Gibran

Today, and on this same day of each year, man is startled from his deep slumber and stands before the phantoms of the Ages, looking with tearful eyes toward Mount Calvary to witness Jesus the Nazarene nailed on the Cross.... But when the day is over and eventide comes, human kinds return and kneel praying before the idols, erected upon every hilltop, every prairie, and every barter of wheat.

Today, the Christian souls ride on the wing of memories and fly to Jerusalem. There they will stand in throngs, beating upon their bosoms, and staring at Him, crowned with a wreath of thorns, stretching His arms before heaven, and looking from behind the veil of Death into the depths of Life....

But when the curtain of night drops over the stage of the day and the brief drama is concluded, the Christians will go back in groups and lie down in the shadow of oblivion between the quilts of ignorance and slothfulness.

On this one day of each year, the philosophers leave their dark caves, and the thinkers their cold cells, and the poets their imaginary arbors, and all stand reverently upon that silent mountain, listening to the voice of a young man saying of His killers, "Oh Father, forgive them, for they know not what they are doing."

But as dark silence chokes the voices of the light, the philosophers and the thinkers and the poets return to their narrow crevices and shroud their souls with meaningless pages of parchment.

The women who busy themselves in the splendour of Life will bestir themselves today from their cushions to see the sorrowful woman standing before the Cross like a tender sapling before the raging tempest; and when they approach near to her, they will hear a deep moaning and a painful grief.

The young men and women who are racing with the torrent of modern civilization will halt today for a moment, and look backward to see the young Magdalen washing with her tears the blood stains from the feet of a Holy Man suspended between Heaven and Earth; and when their shallow eyes weary of the scene they will depart and soon laugh.

On this day of each year, Humanity wakes with the awakening of Spring, and stands crying below the suffering Nazarene; then she closes her eyes and surrenders herself to a deep slumber. But Spring will remain awake, smiling and progressing until merged into Summer, dressed in scented golden raiment. Humanity is a mourner who enjoys lamenting the memories and heroes of the Ages.... If Humanity were possessed of understanding, there would be rejoicing over their glory. Humanity is like a child standing in glee by a wounded beast. Humanity laughs before the strengthening torrent which carries into oblivion the dry branches of the trees, and sweeps away with determination all things not fastened by strength.

Humanity looks upon Jesus the Nazarene as a poor-born Who suffered misery and humiliation with all of the weak. And He is pitied, for Humanity believes He was crucified painfully.... And all that Humanity offers to Him is crying and wailing and lamentation. For centuries Humanity has been worshiping weakness in the person of the Saviour.

The Nazarene was not weak! He was strong and is strong! But the people refuse to heed the true meaning of strength.  Jesus never lived a life of fear, nor did He die suffering or complaining.... He lived as a leader; He was crucified as a crusader; He died with a heroism that frightened His killers and tormentors.

Jesus was not a bird with broken wings; He was a raging tempest who broke all crooked wings. He feared not His persecutors nor His enemies. He suffered not before His killers. Free and brave and daring He was. He defied all despots and oppressors. He saw the contagious pustules and amputated them.... He muted Evil and He crushed Falsehood and He choked Treachery.

Jesus came not from the heart of the circle of Light to destroy the homes and build upon their ruins the convents and monasteries. He did not persuade the strong man to become a monk or a priest, but He came to send forth upon this earth a new spirit, with power to crumble the foundation of any monarchy built upon human bones and skulls.... He came to demolish the majestic palaces, constructed upon the graves of the weak, and crush the idols, erected upon the bodies of the poor. Jesus was not sent here to teach the people to build magnificent churches and temples amidst the cold wretched huts and dismal hovels.... He came to make the human heart a temple, and the soul and altar, and the mind a priest.

These were the missions of Jesus the Nazarene, and these are the teachings for which He was crucified. And if Humanity were wise, she would stand today and sing in strength the song of conquest and the hymn of triumph.

Oh, Crucified Jesus, Who are looking sorrowfully from Mount Calvary at the sad procession of the Ages, and hearing the clamour of the dark nations, and understanding the dreams of Eternity... Thou art, on the Cross, more glorious and dignified than one thousand kings upon one thousand thrones in one thousand empires....

Thou art, in the agony of death, more powerful than one thousand generals in one thousand wars....

With Thy sorrows, Thou art more joyous than Spring with its flowers....

With Thy suffering, Thou art more bravely silent than the crying angels of heaven....

Before Thy lashers, Thou art more resolute than the mountain of rock....

Thy wreath of thorns is more brilliant and sublime than the crow of Bahram.... The nails piercing Thy hands are more beautiful than the sceptre of Jupiter....

The spatters of blood upon Thy feet are more resplendent than the necklace of Ishtar.

Forgive the weak who lament Thee today, for they do not know how to lament themselves....

Forgive them, for they do not know that Thou has conquered death with death, and bestowed life upon the dead....

Forgive them, for they do not know that Thy strength still awaits them....

Forgive them, for they do not know that every day is Thy day.