Tuesday, January 17, 2017

WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY: D. Melhoff, Author

D. Melhoff says he wanted his recently-released GRIMM WOODS to remind us of Hollywood “slasher” films, but with a more complex villain. He has set his story at a holiday camp because “remote, helpless, isolated, etc.” helped him create the “tone” he wanted. Kirkus Reviews says the book is, "The literary equivalent of a slasher movie, one that garners its biggest frights with mere implication."

Melhoff is working on his next thriller, which he plans to finish by the end of the year. When he’s not writing, he studies and practices Spanish and hopes to be able to carry on conversations—also by the end of the year.





Q: You have described GRIMM WOODS as a thriller or a horror story. What makes it a thriller?

D. Melhoff: From day one, I wanted GRIMM WOODS to feel like a Hollywood slasher film—in fact, the first draft was a screenplay, not a novel. A lot of elements are reminiscent of those films, including the setting (a remote summer camp), the characters (horny teenage counselors), and the antagonist (an unknown terror in the woods). While the story draws on these familiar components, I also didn’t want the antagonist to be a typical 2D slasher villain, so that area required more thought and exploration. 

Q: What turned you to writing horror stories?  Who is your favorite “horror” author? Why?

D. Melhoff: Writers write what they like reading, and I’m no exception. If I had to name a favorite author, I’d say Stephen King, although Thomas Harris would be a close second. You can’t top Silence of the Lambs.

Q: Why will readers care about your characters? Are they bigger than life or just ordinary people?

D. Melhoff: The main character, Scott, isn’t very likeable at the beginning. He’s arrogant, irresponsible, selfish—the list goes on. But throughout the story, he’s forced to make decisions that reveal his true nature is really that of a protector, which gives him a significant bump in likeability (according to the book’s Kirkus review, at least). Most of the secondary characters are one-dimensional murder props, but that’s par for the slasher course. Again, it was the tone I was going for.

Q: Does the concept of villain versus hero apply to GRIMM WOODS? What makes a compelling villain?

D. Melhoff: Oh, yes. In fact, the concept of “who’s a villain vs. who’s a hero” is one of the central themes in the book. More specifically, it explores the idea that sometimes bad things are necessary in order for good things to happen. A compelling villain is one whose idea of good vs. bad is the opposite of your protagonist’s.

Q: Is humor helpful in telling your story?

D. Melhoff: You need a healthy dose of humor and suspense in any story, regardless of genre. Think of your favorite thriller novel—chances are you can pick out funny characters, situations, or lines. Conversely, with non-thrillers, moments of suspense create conflict and propel the story forward.  So yes, humor is certainly helpful in telling my stories and making them more believable.

Q: Do you write strictly to scare, i.e., entertain, readers? Or do you embed a few messages along the way?

D. Melhoff: I write to thrill more than scare. In fact, I actually don’t like movies that make you jump, which most friends consider strange. In GRIMM WOODS, there aren’t embedded messages so much as interwoven themes. People can draw their own conclusions.

Q: How important is believability or credibility to engage your readers? How do you pull them into your story?

D. Melhoff: Suspension of disbelief is paramount. Readers can’t be thinking, “Why doesn’t someone do X” or “Why haven’t they tried Y?” If you can cross your t’s and dot your i’s to the point where your audience has no clue what they would do in a character’s situation, you’re on the right track.

Q: Do you use the setting at a camp to build suspense? Could you have told the same story in a city?

D. Melhoff: The camp was necessary given the tone I was going for—i.e., remote, helpless, isolated, etc. Placing it in a city would have resulted in an entirely different story, one that would have likely involved more of the crime genre.

Q: What’s next?

D. Melhoff: I’ve begun outlining my next project but don’t have a first draft yet, which I’m hoping to complete by the end of the year. It’ll be another thriller novel—i.e., nothing paranormal or supernatural.

Q: Tell us about D. Melhoff. What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

D. Melhoff: When I’m not writing (aka procrastinating) I can usually be found eating or fumbling my way through a variety of Spanish workbooks. My goal is to be able to carry out conversations in Spanish by the end of the year. Duolingo says I’m currently 27% fluent, but whoever came up with that algorithm is an overly generous liar.

About D. Melhoff

D. Melhoff was born in a prairie ghost town that few people have heard of and even fewer have visited. While most of his stories are for adults, he also enjoys terrifying younger audiences from time to time, as seen in his series of twisted picture books for children. He credits King, Poe, Hitchcock, Harris, Stoker, and his second grade school teacher, Mrs. Lake, for turning him to horror. For more information, visit grimmwoods.com.
A remote summer camp becomes a lurid crime scene when the bodies of two teenagers are found in a bloody, real-life rendering of a classic Grimm’s fairy tale. Trapped in the wilderness, the remaining counsellors must follow a trail of dark children’s fables in order to outwit a psychopath and save the dwindling survivors before falling prey to their own gruesome endings.

Drawing on the grisly, uncensored details of history’s most famous fairy tales, Grimm Woods is a heart-pounding thriller about a deranged killer who uses traditional children’s stories as tropes in elaborate murders. Set against the backdrop of modern-day Michigan, it’s a journey through the mind of a dangerous zealot and a shocking glimpse into the bedtime stories you thought you knew.

Links
Purchase Links
Exclusive to Amazon - Buy Link

Author Links
Website ~an online hub for everything related to classic fairy tales, as well as the promotional site for D. Melhoff's thriller novel of the same title 
Twitter: @dmelhoff 






Saturday, January 7, 2017

WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY: R. W. Hacker, Author


R. W. Hacker, Author
KILL'T DEAD OR WORSE
R. W. Hacker describes his recently-released KILL’T DEAD OR WORSE as a detective story at its core but “with a sense of humor.”  Set in Texas, the book explores the life of protagonist private detective Nick Sibelius with cases of characters we might expect from the State. In fact, Texas is so important to the story that Hacker considers it to be a character. Critics applaud the book for being "entertaining", "well-written," and "so original you won't find anything like it."

Hacker plans to release two more Nick Sibelius novels in 2017, and he also is planning to release two other novels:  a science fiction and historical fantasy story. He and his wife moved from Texas and now live in Seattle, where he loves to cook and sing in a jazz group.

Check out the giveaway opportunity at the end of the interview -- and don't miss the excerpt.

Q: You have categorized your new novel, KILL’T DEAD OR WORSE, in multiple genres, including Mystery, Detective, and Humor. Which one dominates? Is it more of a mystery than a humorous story? Would you say that your story is a whodunit?

R. W. Hacker: The Nick Sibelius novels fit into the storytelling of Elmore Leonard (GET SHORTY) and Carl Hiaason (SKINNY DIPPING). The story has quirky characters pulled out of the fabric of Central Texas, some with a bit more criminal intent than others. I think of it as a detective story with a sense of humor.

Q:  How important is humor to tell your story? Does the use of humor help to develop your characters?

R. W. Hacker: In some ways my protagonist, Nick, plays the straight man to a world of unusual characters. Junior, for example, is at his core a good guy, but he makes poor decisions and takes actions before thinking through the consequences with a wake of destruction trailing behind him. Whatever he does, you know something unexpected will happen. At its core, the novel is a detective story, but some of the characters create humorous situations.

Q: Why will readers care about your protagonist, Nick Sibelius, private investigator? How will they relate? Why will they care what happens to him?

R. W. Hacker: Nick is a man who worked hard to have a family, a career, and a purpose, but like many of us, life does not go as planned. And for Nick things really went off the rails. After his wife left him for another man and his partner in the Houston Police force died when they responded to a call, Nick lost track of his life. He spirals down, finally landing in a trailer sitting on a plot of land east of the small town, growing Austin suburb of Pflugerville through the urgings of an old friend to rebuild his life. We meet him when he is just beginning to sort out his life and find some direction. He’s looking for meaningful work, maybe someone special in his life, and most of all, some peace and quiet without any drama. I think readers will care about Nick because most of us empathize with his struggle through our own unique life challenges.

Q: Your story is set in Texas. How helpful is the setting to tell your story? Would the plot be similar in any other State?

R. W. Hacker: In my mind Texas, and especially Central Texas is a character in the story. Like the rest of the country, condos rise, suburbs sprawl, and big boxes and franchises line the roads. But if you look in the right places, you still find the flavor and character of Texas which infuses the novel—BBQ smokehouses, diners serving chicken fried steak and coconut cream pie, pick up trucks, dance halls for two steppin’, and a sky that goes on forever. The story relies on characters rising out of the independent spirit and confidence of Texans and plays out in the context of the Texas Hill Country.

Q: Did you write your story strictly to entertain or did you embed a message or two along the way? Do you have something to say about toxic waste?

R. W. Hacker: My focus leans to entertainment, but I suppose my antagonists tend to have a general disregard for the environment. A disconnect, really. Texas ranchers and farmers know the critical importance of water and the impact of something like toxic waste on their land and the aquifers. Separating our actions from their impacts almost always comes back to bite us in the end.

Q: Does the concept of hero versus villain apply to KILL’T DEAD OR WORSE? What are the traits of an effective, compelling villain?

R. W. Hacker: Absolutely! Nick Sibelius, while a bit down and out when we meet him, is the hero of the story. He faces a ecosystem of villainy which offers a cross section of what it means to be a villain. At the bottom of the system is Jason, a killer and destroyer by nature. In some ways there’s a ‘simpleness’ to Jason. He’s just nasty. Barry, the toxic waste and drug manufacturing entrepreneur who employs Jason is the more dangerous kind of villain. Intelligent, methodical, narcissistic, and pathological. He doesn’t present the physical threat of Jason, but he brings much more to the game. And then there’s Junior who provides a bit of villainous comic relief. He wants to be bad, but at his core he’s too good-natured to be a villain. And so he often takes actions intending to present the aura of villainy, but not having his heart in the business. However, the results are almost always disastrous.

Q: How important is suspense to drive your mystery? How do you create suspense?

R. W. Hacker:  Suspense drives the story forward from the first chapter when we ponder the fate of a couple in the woods, followed by other disappearances near Junior’s farm. Sometimes the suspense is a piece of information withheld from the reader, like the fate of the two lovers. At other times the reader knows more than the protagonist, and so the suspense is in our knowing what Nick does not yet know.

Q: How helpful is romance to tell your story? Does it help the hero to have a heroine?

R. W. Hacker: I’ve used romance to explore the state of Nick’s mind and spirit. He’s lost a wife, a colleague, and a job when we meet him. There’s a loneliness and sadness in the background of his life. Then he meets a woman who brings the hope of relationship and happiness again. And for Nick, the sudden intense feelings also magnify and bring into focus the emptiness he has been sojourning. In this case, the woman also happens to be a very strong female character with serious skills. I’ll let the reader decide if she turns out to be a protagonist or an antagonist.

Q: What’s next? Will you write another detective story?

R. W. Hacker: Yes. KILL’T DEAD OR WORSE was originally published by a small press under a different title. This novel is a reworking of the story—a director’s cut, if you will. And as an indie author I have control of things like the title, cover, and marketing in a way I didn’t before. So I’m excited to get this story out in the world and am hopeful to find new readers.

There are at least two more Nick Sibelius novels which will be coming out in 2017. Readers can check out the first two chapters of ALL HAT & NO CATTLE at the end of KILL’T DEAD OR WORSE. The third novel, entitled CROOKED AS THE COLORADO, should be out later in the year. I also have been shopping a couple of novels around to agents. One is a science fiction novel with a humorous lean called THE BIFURCATION OF DUNGSTEN CREASE. And the other is a historical fantasy with a working title of ADDISON SHAW AND THE LORDS OF ALCHEMY. I’m hoping to release both of those into the wild either through a publisher or as an indie author in the coming year.

Q: Tell us about R. W. Hacker. What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

R. W. Hacker: I moved from Austin, Texas to Seattle, Washington in 2009. In Austin my activities centered around flying and cycling. In the Pacific Northwest, I still cycle, and I love to go hiking, driving my little Miata, top down, through the mountains, cooking (and trying not to eat everything I cook!), and I sing in a vocal jazz ensemble of friends who love jazz as much as I do.

About R. W. Hacker

Richard Hacker has been writing most of his life, and professionally, in support of his work in management consulting, public speaking and training in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries. In 2009 he moved, along with his wife, from Austin to Seattle, shifting his professional focus from business consulting to writing fiction full time. Wanted by authorities for smuggling Texas BBQ across state lines, he now writes and lives in Seattle. His writing has been recognized by the Writer's League of Texas and the Pacific Northwest Writers Association. As a judge in literary contests such as PNWA and ChicLit, he enjoys the opportunity to give writers honest critique to move their craft forward. In addition, he is the science fiction and fantasy editor for the Del Sol Review, an online literary magazine.


After a murdered partner, a cheating wife and a lost job in Houston, Nick Sibelius sets up a private investigation business in a small Texas town hoping to find some peace and maybe, himself. When two lovers disappear and a fisherman turns up dead, he finds himself drawn into a web of crime and deceit involving MaryLou, a beautiful woman with a mysterious past; Junior, a failed farmer whose best intentions seem to always result in a dead body; and Barry, a sociopathic dentist turned illegal toxic waste entrepreneur with a violent right wing agenda. When the felon who killed Nick’s partner in Houston joins forces with Barry, Nick must not only stop the toxic waste dumping while finding his client’s missing daughter, but keep from being killed in the process. In the end, MaryLou’s dark secret will either save him or kill him -- whichever comes first.


EXCERPT

A banging startled him awake. Nick lifted his head off a stale, damp pillow case, the bed creaking as he sat up. Three fifteen. He slipped on some shorts and checked the safety on his Glock. The banging continued, which in his trailer sounded like Thor hammering on his head.

He shouted, "Who's there?"

"Reverend Anderson."

Nick didn't know a Reverend Anderson since he had no desire to step through the transom of a church anytime soon. This had to be the same guy who called. Why would a minister go to this much trouble to wake me up? He held the gun behind his back, opening the door to a large black man, six foot four, dressed in tan slacks, a green polo shirt and shoes with a shine that reflected the light from inside Nick's trailer.

"Did you call earlier?"

"Yes, that was me. I need to speak with you urgently."

Nick slipped the gun behind a cushion of the built-in seat by the door. "As I told you..." He searched for the man's name.

"Reverend Anderson. I'm the pastor of Victory Church in town."

"Yes, mister...Reverend Anderson. Like I said, we can talk during normal business hours."

Nick reached to close the door.

"You shut that door and you're condemning my little girl to God only knows what." 
"Trust me, Reverend. It can wait until the morning." Nick pushed the door closed, but Anderson stiff armed the door open. "You don't want to go down this path, Reverend."

"I've heard what people say about you."

"So I'm the talk of the town, eh?"

"They say you're rude, arrogant and a drunk."

"Well you can tell them to kiss—"

"And that you get it done." Anderson took a step forward, placing his large frame in the doorway. "Is that correct, Mr. Sibelius. Do you get it done?"

"It's Nick. And yeah, I suppose I do." He breathed a weary sigh. "Do we really need to talk about this right now?"

The Reverend stared at him. Nick eased away from the door, nodding toward the trailer's interior. Anderson took the two steps through the opening of the trailer, ducking to avoid banging his head against the doorway. 

Nick said, "I take it I'm not going to get rid of you until you tell me what's crawling up your ass, right?"

"Yeah, that's right, Nick. I need your help." 

Nick looked to the right at dishes piled in the sink, empty bottles on the counter and the remains of last night's dinner still sitting on the table, and then left, to a pile of dirty clothes and towels. He grabbed a barbecue stained paper plate off the table, folding it up and placing it in the trash under the sink. "So what's this burning issue?"

"It's my daughter. She's missing."

Links

Exclusive to Amazon Buy Link Amazon 
Twitter: @Richard_Hacker




Thursday, December 1, 2016

WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY: Del Millers, Author and Life Consultant

Dr. Del Millers, Author
ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE
Dr. Del Millers is the founder of TheBestYouAcademy.com, EnergizedLifeAcademy.com, and author of eight books on nutrition, fitness, and personal growth. His most recent book is ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE: ACTIVATE THE 7 PILLARS OF POSITIVE ENERGY THAT MAKE YOU FEEL ALIVE. Reviewers applaud his book as “inspirational,” “motivational,” “smart,” and “scientific.”

Millers typically writes a book every other year and is mulling over his next one. However, a key goal is to take the plunge and write some fiction. When he’s not writing or consulting, he enjoys spending time with his family, and he is learning to play the piano and the guitar so he can teach his three daughters. He plays tennis regularly and is a Latin Ballroom dancer.

Q: Who can benefit the most from the advice in ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE: ACTIVATE THE 7 PILLARS OF POSITIVE ENERGY THAT MAKE YOU FEEL ALIVE? Are you targeting entrepreneurs, working parents, scientists, celebrities….? Does your advice apply to all equally?

Del Millers: I've consulted with hundreds of people over the past twenty years (doctors, lawyers, accountants, business owners and executives) who are at the verge of burnout.  I've met thousands more at my seminars that often tell me that they just can't continue with their current fast-pace lifestyle because it's literally killing them.

These were the conversations that inspired me to write ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE.  I wanted to help people find a solution to their personal energy crisis and show them a new way to live and work. 

To Energize Your Life simply means to fall in love with your life again.  To find ways to get rid of what I call the "energy suckers" that drain your energy everyday.  And to prevent burnout by doing meaningful things with your time.

ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE is primarily for people at a personal crossroads in their life.  This could be professionals, working parents, entrepreneurs, or even unskilled workers.  The important thing is that they realize that the way they've been living and working is no longer working for them.  Something is missing.  And they're tired and ready to make a change. 

Q: How and why did you categorize positive energy into 7 (seven) different pillars? Did you conduct research to see what would work? Or did it come mostly from your own experiences?

Del Millers: The seven pillars of positive energy are the various sources from which our energy needs can be met. Keep in mind that energy isn’t just a physical entity. We also draw energy from our emotions, clarity of thought, as well as the meaningful and fulfilling events in our lives.

For instance, to feel alive, not only do we have to practice daily health-building habits, we must also clarify and understand why we do the things we do — both at work and in our personal lives – cultivate positive emotions, and make time for play.

Are there other sources of positive energy that I don't know about? There certainly could be.  The seven I presented in ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE (passion and purpose, personal evolution, physical vitality, positive energy, positive psychology, prosocial behavior, and play) are based on the wealth of new research over the past two decades on positive psychology, employee engagement and play, as well as my years of experience consulting with executives, entrepreneurs, small business owners, career changers and self re-inventors.

Q: You started your career as an Electrical Engineer and Pharmaceutical Sales Rep. What turned you, or inspired you, to write self-help books and do consulting?

Del Millers:  Like most people, engineering was something I fell into because I was good at math and science in high school.  However, I quickly realized that sitting in a cubicle everyday wasn't what I wanted to do with my life.  So, I tried technical sales then pharmaceutical sales.

After four years in corporate America, however, I made the discovery that I am not the employee type. So, I hung up my suit and tie and bid farewell to corporate America to pursue the uncertain life of an entrepreneur.  And I've always been interested in living the kind of life that inspires me.  So writing about it and consulting with others is just a natural byproduct of sharing what I know so that others may grow.

Q: Reviewers of ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE applaud you for the book as “motivational” and say you “know your stuff.” What qualifies and enables you to advise readers on how to ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE?

Del Millers: Twenty years ago, I walked away from corporate America because it was sucking the life out of me. I needed room to breathe. To explore. To create an inspired life.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that you have to quit your job, as I did.  However, you do have to be honest with yourself and either find ways to love what you do or make a plan to leave it behind.  In short, to live an energized life, you either have to learn to love your job or leave it.

I chose to leave my corporate job because I wanted to create a life I could fall in love with – an energized life; and I did.  So I’ve been a student and seeker of this way of living practically my entire life.  And as I wrote in the book, to live an energized life is to live a life that inspires you and those whose path is brightened by your light.

And I’m honored and humbled that throughout my life I have had the pleasure and privilege of inspiring others all over the world to live better lives. Inspired lives.

Q: What do you discover to be people’s biggest blockade to energizing (living an energized life)? Is it different between men and women?

Del Millers: The biggest challenge that most people (men and women) have is that most of us have been conditioned at a very young age to be "workers," instead of "players."

We're taught to do well in school so we can go to college, get a "good job" with benefits and then spend the best 30-40 years of our lives climbing the career ladder.  Not that there's anything wrong with that if that's all you want. 

The problem is most workers are restricted to a limited version of themselves in the workplace and that's not who we are as creative, intelligent beings.  Human beings are multi-dimensional, so pretty soon our one-dimensional work life conflicts with our need to grow, explore, and to live inspired with purpose, passion and play.

Players, on the other hand, put creativity, fulfillment and fun at the center of everything we do.  We're not afraid to explore our multiple selves.  We are entrepreneurs, artists, writers, bloggers, songwriters, musicians, filmmakers, and inventers, all at the same time.  In short, players are creators.  We create our lives around what feels most rewarding, exciting, enjoyable, challenging and fulfilling.

Q: How helpful is humor to convey your messages to readers?

Del Millers: Humor is a great vehicle for communicating important ideas.  However, it isn't the only one.  Sometimes, just showing people what's possible is all it takes to create a chain reaction to begin the process of change.

I still remember my big "aha moment" very clearly.  Twenty-five years ago I walked into my friends karate studio dressed in my work suit and tie.  He, on the other hand, was wearing shorts and a t-shirt and I remember thinking to myself, I want his life.  Well, a year later, I had it.

Q: Can you provide three to five tips that will lead us to energize (help to energize our lives)?

Del Millers: The following are some of the most important lessons from ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE:

1. Learn to love your work (or at least like it) or create a plan to move on. 
Is your job a way to support yourself while you pursue your true passion?  Is it a way to hone your skills?  Whatever purpose your work serves in your life, find some element of it that you love and try and do more of that.  If you simply just hate the work that you're doing, then it's time to start creating your exit strategy.  For most people, their work is the biggest "energy sucker" in their lives.

2. Steal a few "play moments" each day.
Play is an integral source of energy.  To neglect it is to neglect one of our most fundamental needs as a human being.  Play is all around us, but is generally only noticed by the playful at heart. You stand in a line at the supermarket, post office, bank, or airport. Why not use this as an opportunity to increase your play quota for the day.  You don't have to be a comedian.  All you have to do to steal a few play moments each day is to adapt a playful attitude.

3. Passion leads to Life Purpose
If you're sitting around expecting to find meaning in your life, you won't.  You have to get out into the world in pursuit of your passions and test reality.  And through trial and error you will come to know the things that feel most right to you.

While in the pursuit of your passions you will eventually arrive at what feels most meaningful and fulfilling to you.  Without passion and play you will end up as a mere fragment of yourself, living a life of boredom and regret.

4. Focus on what's going right in your life
The way we think about our health, stress, life’s daily setbacks, or a momentous defeat affects us more significantly than the events themselves.  And research has shown that although our brain controls our biochemistry, our thoughts control the brain.  The research also shows that negative thoughts affect our brain in such a way that produces negative emotions.  And unfortunately, negative emotions will prevent our brain from seeing all possible options.  They narrow our thinking and prevent us from seeing all possible options.

Positive thoughts, however, have the opposite affect on your brain.  They lead to positive emotions.  And positive emotions expand awareness, build trust, and lead to more creative connections and positive outcomes, such as better negotiations.

5. Be optimistic when you have every reason to be pessimistic
It’s easy to have positive energy when things are going right and everything is unfolding as they should. But the time when you need positive energy the most is when your world is filled with negativity, when everything that can go wrong is going wrong, and when you’re surrounded by negative people and negative results.

This is when you really need to dig down deep and find the source of your inspiration and reconnect with your larger vision. If you don’t, you’ll be buried alive in the pit of despair alongside all the other negative people who pulled you in.

Q: Have you written other self-help books? On what other subjects do you offer help?

Del Millers: ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE is my eighth book.  My very first book was FITNESS & SPIRITUALITY: HOW TO MAKE THE CONNECTIOM. I've also written several fitness books as well as cookbooks.

Q: What’s next? Will you write more self-help books?

Del Millers: I will definitely be writing more self-help books.  I tend to write a new book about every other year.  And, yes, I already have several ideas for my next book project.  My ultimate dream, however, is to do something that scares the living daylights out of me and that is to one day write a novel.

Q: Tell us something about Del Millers. What do you like to do when you’re not energizing or writing?

Del Millers: I always encourage others to find something that they love to do and do it often, because play leads to joy and joy is the fuel for love.  So, I try to take my own advice.  I exercise everyday, I love to play tennis 3-4 times a week, and I am a Latin Ballroom dancer. 

I am also currently learning to play the piano along with my three young daughters and I'm teaching myself the guitar so I can teach it to them.  My all time favorite activity, however, is just rolling around on the floor or on the grass in the park with my girls tickling each other.

About Del Millers

Del Millers (aka Dr. Del) started his career as an Electrical Engineer and
Pharmaceutical Sales Rep for some of the top Fortune 500 companies in corporate
America. After four years in corporate America, however, he made the discovery that he is not the employee type. So he hung up his suit and tie and bid farewell to corporate America to pursue the uncertain life of an entrepreneur.

Dr. Del has since authored eight books on nutrition, fitness, and personal growth.  His most recent is Energize Your Life.  Through his online training courses —The Best You Academy and Energized Life Academy —Dr. Del has consulted with clients on four continents and in six different countries on how to fuel their lives and work with positive energy, and find freedom, fulfillment, and fun.

Dr. Del has a PhD in Nutritional Sciences and a Masters degree in psychology. He lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife and three daughters.


'activate the 7 pillars of positive energy that make you feel alive'

To Energize Your Life is to fuel your life and work with purpose, passion and play.

This book on how to get the most out of life strives to teach you the techniques required to fall in love with your life once again and help you to:

   Get rid of 'energy suckers'
                        Learn to use simple positive strategies to prevent burnout
                        Spend more time doing what you truly love 

ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE will provide new meaning or purpose to your life, through the things that you do every single day, by the way you relate to the world and through your interactions with others around you.

Take time to do meaningful things every day, create a community around yourself and find something you love to do.  And if and when that thing no longer makes your heart sing, move on to the next thing.

ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE shows you the simple positive strategies you can employ to successfully create fulfilling work, prevent burnout, cultivate positive emotions, enrich your relationships, become a conduit for positive energy, and, most importantly, make time for joy.

Excerpt

Passion leads to purpose
It’s pointless asking yourself what is the purpose of your life if you’re sitting in some dead-end job.  You have to get out into the world and test reality.  You have to experience life through the pursuit of your passions in order to arrive at what feels most meaningful and fulfilling to you.

Instead of asking “what is my purpose?”…a better way of phrasing the question is “how am I allowing life to find its fullest expression through me?” Another good question to ask is “what is my big vision for my life?”

These are queries that can only be actualized through a life of passion and meaning.  Anything less and you end up being a fragment of yourself, living a life of boredom and regret.

And as you already know, boredom won’t energize you, neither will regret.  You have to regularly engage in activities that make you feel alive.

You must also find meaning in your work or create a plan to move on.  Going to a job everyday that doesn’t inspire you does more than drain your vital life energy; it robs you of your humanity because, as surely as a bird instinctively knows how to fly, you were meant to aspire for greatness.  Greatness is in your DNA.

You must claim your magnificence, proclaim your freedom, and start living your passions.  This is how you give your life meaning.  It is the only path that leads to a truly energized life.

Your Life’s Purpose
We exist on this earth for a very short time and the purpose of our lives is “to live.”  I don’t mean to simply exist. 

Getting up in the morning and going to a job you hate, then coming home and watching television until you fall asleep, only to get up and repeat, isn’t living; that’s existing.

“To live” is a verb.  This means that you have to take some conscious action in order to have an experience of life.

But, how do we experience life?

Well, we experience life through our senses: smell, touch, taste, sight and sound.  Of course, we may also experience life on a deeper metaphysical level, but that’s a topic for another day.

Therefore, to experience life, we have to get up off our butts and go smell the flowers, taste some good food, do something we don’t know how to do, marvel at the beauty around us, and learn how to listen to the stillness of motion.

Our lives are nothing more than the accumulation of our experiences.  Some will be memorable and others won’t.

Those memorable experiences are what give our lives meaning. They bring us happiness and joy.  They touch the lives of others and in doing so, make a difference in the world.

Those experiences that are less memorable serve simply as a way to kill time.

So, a better question to ask than “What is my life’s purpose?” is “What can I do with my time today that is meaningful — in some way  — to me or others?”

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