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What Would the Founding Fathers Think: A Young American's guide to understanding the mess our country is in and how we get out
Isabelle Webb: Legend of the Jewel
Captive Heart
Cobble Cavern
Caller ID
Summer of Secrets
On Little Wings
We Lived in Heaven: Spiritual Accounts of Souls Coming to Earth
Christ's gifts to women
A Woman's power: threads that bind us to god
Scary School
Hope's journey
Targets in Ties
Crater Lake: Battle for Wizard Island
With a Name like Love
Sean Griswold's head

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2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
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Saturday, April 6, 2013

Review of, Drawing Out The Dragons: A Meditation on Art, Destiny, and the Power of Choice, by James A. Owen

Product Description
  • Title: Drawing Out the Dragons: A Meditation on Art, Destiny, and the Power of Choice
  • Author: James A. Owen
  • Publisher: Shadow Mountain
  • Published: March 5, 2013 (originally published March 2011)
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781609073688
  • FTC FYI:  I received a hardcover copy in exchange for an honest review.
Book Description 

"I believe in you.  You have a great destiny.  You are meant for great things.  And it's possible to live a wonderful, extraordinary life."

That is the promise offered by bestselling author and illustrator James A. Owen in this remarkable and inspirational meditation.  In Drawing Out the Dragons, James shares personal stories and the deep truths he learned while navigating past obstacles and adversity toward a life of lasting belief and joy.

We all have a grand destiny, but sometimes we feel we lack the power to achieve it.  But we always have the power to choose.  "Every drawing, every life, is nothing but a series of choices and actions.  Make your lines.  Make your choices....  What you create from there is entirely up to you."

Drawing Out the Dragons has the power to uplift, inspire, and change your life.
 My Review
 Have you ever read something and realized you were meant to read it? This is how I felt about Drawing Out The Dragons. I will admit, I have REALLY been struggling in my life the past few years, but especially the past few months. I have felt helpless and struggled to even want to succeed at anything. As I read this book, I felt like James A. Owen was speaking directly to me. In fact, whenever I read something that touched my soul, I underlined it or put a star by it. This book is now pretty marked up. I'm not defacing the book, but using it wisely for my own benefit! 
In trying to decide what to share with you, the readers of my blog, I wasn't sure how much I could share without writing pages and pages. James Owens has lived through many trials and hard times in his life, but he found ways to overcome these hardships. 
The number one message that James shares, is one that he learned early in life as a young boy while dealing with an illness in a hospital. 
"One of the most important things I can tell someone who is struggling: You have a greater destiny than this.You are meant for greater things than this. And if you want to beat this, to overcome whatever it is you're grappling with, you are strong enough to do it. And if that's the choice you make, it's possible to live a wonderful, extraordinary life." (page 27)
After I read this, I sat silently for over five minutes just thinking about this message and how it applied to my life right now. Then I had to read it over again a few more times. I feel that this message, and many others in this book are so empowering and motivating.

Some other ideas that inspired me were these...
-(This message is one he often shares with school children)
"I believe they can do anything they choose to do in this life, and it doesn't matter how old they are. All that matters is if they have the desire and determination to put in the effort required to be good at what they do." 
(page 32)
What a great thing to share with kids who need to know that they can succeed if they have the desire.
The last thing I wanted to share with you made me write "WOW" in the book. It helped me with my somewhat fatalistic thinking as of late, that nothing good has been happening in my life and there's nothing I can do about it.
"We have to choose to live deliberately. Things are going to happen to us whether we make choices or not. So it's up to us to make the choices to make things happen. To be the kind of people who make things happen, not the kind of people things happen to. We have to choose to live deliberately. To actually actively make choices." (page 54)
So you see...WOW! We can make things happen, not just have things happen to us. :) This book is full of things/ideas that will help you in your life, whatever struggles may be happening at the moment. I can see that I will be reading this book again and again. I will share it with my children and other family members, young and old. 
I want to end with one more thought from the book. I hope that this will encourage you to believe in yourself more.
"Every moment is another chance to learn, and another chance to make a choice. Everything does happen for a reason, and the things that happened were supposed to happen, because they did happen. And while no one can change the past, the future begins anew every time you choose to live deliberately.
Those who make miracles happen are the ones who, first, believe it to be possible, and second, are willing to pay the price to make it so." (page 113)

This book gets a 5 star rating from me!
Author Links
Purchase Links
 Author Bio:
James A. Owen is founder and executive director of Coppervale International, an art and design studio that also published the periodicals International Studio and Argosy, develops television and film projects, and is redesigning an entire town in Arizona, among other ventures. James has written and illustrated two dozen StarChild comics, the award-winning MythWorld series of novels (published in Germany and France),  the bestselling series, The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica, the inspirational nonfiction book Drawing out the Dragons, and more.  More than a million copies of his publications are in print, and are sold all over the world.
James began his career in publishing approximately two years before he was old enough to get a driver’s license, and was the youngest publisher ever to be an exhibitor at the San Diego Comicon. He founded Taliesin Press in 1992, both writing and illustrating the company’s debut publication, a Dickensian comic book titled StarChild.

In both 1994 and 1995, James was named to trade magazine Hero Illustrated’s list of the one hundred most influential people in the Comic Book Industry. On July 17, 1995, to coincide with the 40th anniversary of Disneyland’s opening, Taliesin Press was renamed Coppervale International — mostly because no one could pronounce Taliesin and those who could kept asking James if he could design buildings instead of comics.
During the fall of 1995, Coppervale negotiated a marketing arrangement with direct market distributor Capital City that pushed the company to international prominence, which led to an invitation by industry leader Image Comics to co-publish the new StarChild series, Mythopolis. The two dozen StarChild comics James produced remain in print as the six-volume Essential StarChild set, and are being re-released in the spring of 2013 as the one-volume Twentieth Anniversary Nearly-Complete Essential StarChild.

Before the turn of the millennium Coppervale also secured publication rights to the century-old arts magazine International Studio, which debuted in the spring of 1999. After the turn of the millennium, International Studio was relaunched along with a high-end revival of the periodical Argosy, both of which won many design awards in amounts inversely proportional to the amount of money the magazines made. They won a LOT of awards.
The first book in a series of prose novels written by James titled Mythworld (Kai Meyer’s Mythenwelt in Germany) won the 2003 AI award for Best Novel, and was nominated alongside books by Stephen King and Michael Crichton for the prestigious Phantastik Prize for Best International Novel. Steve won, but James got more votes than Crichton, so that’s okay. As of May 2012, MythWorld Book One: The Festival Of Bones and MythWorld Book Two: Invisible Moon are available in English as an ebook from the Coppervale International website, with further editions to follow.

James has written and illustrated six books in the bestselling series The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica: Here, There Be Dragons; The Search For The Red Dragon; The Indigo King; The Shadow Dragons; The Dragon’s Apprentice; and The Dragons of Winter. The series is now being published in more than twenty languages. A seventh volume, The First Dragon, will conclude the series in November  2013.
Often asked to speak at schools, James rarely discusses his books, instead choosing to focus instead on stories drawn from his own life – examples of overcoming obstacles and adversity, about how making choices in life is like drawing a Dragon and how he came to do what it is that he loves most in the world for his job. These stories were made available to James’s readers in Drawing Out The Dragons, a non-fiction collection that was released as an ebook, and thanks to an over-funded Kickstarter project, is also available (in VERY limited quantities) as a hardcover and paperback from Coppervale International.

Drawing Out The Dragons is the first in a series of three books called The Meditations. DotD, along with the other two volumes, The Barbizon Diaries, and The Grand Design, will be published in all-new, two-color hardcover editions from Shadow Mountain Publishing. They will be released in March, June, and September of 2013, respectively. Also from Shadow Mountain, and also beginning in 2013, is the five-volume YA Fantasy Fool’s Hollow. This series serves as both a literary homecoming for James as well as a starting point for a bold, new adventure, because Fool’s Hollow will be a grand retelling of—and completion of—the StarChild saga and will include dozens of all new, original illustrations. “Fool’s Hollow is the work closest to my heart,” James says, “Through writing the Imaginarium Geographica series, I gained experience as a storyteller, and I feel that now is the best time for me to return to a story I love and tell it in a new way as a series of illustrated novels.”

James is also in discussion with the executive producer and associate producer of The Lord of the Rings movie franchise, Mark Ordesky and Rick Porras, respectively, to develop Fool’s Hollow as a CGI film and Here, There Be Dragons as a live action film. James is also collaborating with the remarkable musician S. J. Tucker to produce an album of songs inspired by the Fool’s Hollow books. Maquettes for the film projects have already been sculpted by Jason Warren, Lead Designer at Coppervale.

All of these projects are being developed at the Coppervale Studio, a 14,000 square foot, century-old restored church in Northeastern Arizona, which is managed and run by James’s brother Jeremy.
More Good Trouble is afoot. Developing.
Visit Xander Rapstine’s website for James A. Owen’s bibliography.

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