Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Sunday, March 30, 2014
Noah: Movie Review
NOAH MOVIE REVIEW
Noah. A man of God. A man of faith. A man that was given a great task. That was the true Bible Noah. But in the movie version, Noah I found God and faith both lacking, however it was clear that Noah was given a great task to build an ark - but not to save mankind but to save all the birds and beasts from extinction.
With that said, in the movie, Noah was dark and at times bitter with his God. He fights with his wife and his children. He seems to have lost his humanity towards other living beings and with it all compassion. Noah has decided mankind will die out with his family and no other children can be born. However, this was not the bible’s version of the story, but the creators of the movie.
Although this version of Noah is clearly Hollywood invented, it was very entertaining and did make me think about the true story of Noah. The bible is filled with wonderful and murky tales of the Israelites. Perhaps this will lead to a movie trend into unmarked territory or people taking a closer look at scripture. All in all, I was glad to see Noah and would recommend it whether you believe in the bible's tale or not.
By Author Tamera Lawrence
By Author Tamera Lawrence
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
I was recently asked to speak at the local Upper Dublin High School to talk to students about writing, publishing and sharing of my current books.. Two session were held in their beautiful library with a group of great students. Their theme week was "Seeking the Unknown."
Ghosts of Mayflower: A Pennhurst Haunting fit very well into their topic and the teens liked discussing the paranormal aspects of ghost hunting. We also discussed Pennhurst State School and Mental Hospital's tainted past. Many of the kids had never heard of Pennhurst so it was awesome to answer many of their questions.
Working at the Pennhurst Haunt these past three years, I, myself am always learning more about the previous Pennhurst State School, which opened and closed its doors 1908 -1986. I have met a lot of prior staff and have heard tales both good and bad from people with hands on experience. Though some of what I have learned is clearly speculative, people love to share their knowledge or opinions. Whatever the reason, Pennhurst has a way of sparking interest in the local area and from the many visitors that travel long distances to take a peek at the complex.
Pennhurst was once called The Eastern Pennsylvania State Institution for the Feeble-Minded and Epileptic. It was initially meant to run as a community in itself, separating the mentally and physically handicapped from the rest of society. It once housed children of all ages, children that grew to adulthood. But many were neglected and failed to progress. Over the years in operation, 10,000 children came through Pennhurst's door. The institute was underfunded, understaffed and poorly organized.
Today parts of Pennhurst have been turned into a Halloween Attraction. The Mayflower Hall Building offers a Ghost Hunt - where you can tour the building and look for real ghosts. Come visit me on the second floor. Already this season, I have met fans of Ghosts of Mayflower and would like to thank them for their support.
***I would like to note there was a lot of great staff in Pennhurst's later years that were not only underpaid, but often worked for free because they did care about the residents and tried to make a difference.
If you would like further information about Ghosts of Mayflower, please feel free to check out a writing sample through Amazon.com
My webpage is http://www.outskirtspress.com/GhostsofMayflower
My other books include the following:
Before I Wake
The Pond 1st Place award winning mystery (Reader's Favorite)
The Serpent's Kiss (Young adult paranormal series) --- Coming 2014
Ghosts of Mayflower: A Pennhurst Haunting (Reader's Favorite Finalists)
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
TRUE HAUNTING: Book Review: *****
Ghosts. So many people don’t believe in the paranormal yet there has to come a time where a skeptic might just question their existence. It’s usually because someone has yet to encounter something mystic or unexplained or perhaps they just don’t care to acknowledge its existence. Yet for those of us who believe in God, we are worshiping the most powerful supernatural being imaginable. To be a bible believer one encompasses a belief in demons and angels and divine intervention. And yet people only want to consider the good in religion, not the existence of hell or its dominions.
So what is a ghost? According to Ed Becker a ghost is a person who has refused to accept his or hers death for whatever reason and they have attached themselves to a possession or perhaps a living being. To think of one stuck in that realm is sad indeed.
In 1970 Ed Becker and his wife became the proud owners of an apartment building with 2 units. Ed put his time and effort into restoring the old establishment. The couple would rent out the first floor and live on the second with their newborn daughter. The only problem – there are already tenants living on both floors. Perhaps one could live with a ghost if the ghost minded itself and left the living to live out their lives in peace. But the ghosts living with Ed and his family wanted no such peace. Ed’s ghosts were determined to make themselves known, brewing mischief whenever they could, creating a morbid atmosphere for the first and second floor occupants residing in the building. This true life accounting of what Ed and his family faced and how they handle the situation is fascinating. This story happened in the 1970’s a time where there wasn’t a lot of help out there for someone in Ed’s predicament and the few experts, including a priest, did little to help the situation.
TRUE HAUNTING by author Edwin F Becker is a powerful, gripping story that kept me glued to the pages. If you never believed in ghosts, you might just after reading this account. True paranormal fans will love reading this creepy tale of a building’s possession and just how far its ghostly occupants will go to try to claim what they believe to be still theirs. A great read by a talent author.
Reviewed: by Author Tamera Lawrence, author of GHOSTS OF MAYFLOWER: A PENNHURST HAUNTING
Thursday, June 13, 2013
Guest Post: by Shannon Lawrence
Solving The Universe: The job of an Astrophysicist by Shannon Lawrence
The universe is vast and mysterious. From subatomic particles, to enormous spinning galaxies. Mystery en-veils everything. Is their life on other planets? Could we eventually live on other planets? Overall, what makes the universe tick? Questions like these may deter some, but for others this is a problem that needs to be solved; and Physics is the solution. Astrophysics (a branch of Physics) deals with the phenomena that happens in the macro-scale such as black holes, Multi-verse theory, and the infamous anti-matter that is more common than real matter. For the dreamer and star gazer, Astrophysics is a dream job.
Astrophysicists spend most of their time writing theories or experimenting depending on which sub field you enter. If your a theoretical Astrophysicist then you deal with phenomena on a theoretical view point. You have to support your idea's with facts and then an experimental Astrophysics will try to prove it using technology or by writing a computer program to simulate what would happen if the theory was applied. NASA and other organizations will hire for this job, but you get payed more for working for the smaller organizations. The pay you get will depend on the following variables; time schooling, what you went to school for, experience, and time you've been with them. The average money you can get is between 100k per year to 150k per year.
To prepare to be a theoretical astrophysicist you need to have either a lot of determination or a lot of skill in science and math. The field is a very limited one since there are only a handful of places that will hire an astrophysicist, so getting in is tough. To prepare you should be in the highest classes of science and math and have many extra-curricular activities so that you may get into a good college (once again because selection is so limited you need to be the top of the top and focus your life around this goal) You also need a natural love for science, math, and the universe and be naturally curious. From middle school to high school the best thing to do is get a 4.0 grade average (pretty much everyone who goes to Stanford has a 4.0 or above and most are musically endowed) Along with this, you should try to get teacher recommendations later in High school so that you can get into a good college.
The overall goal of an Astrophysicist is to solve the mysteries of the universe, but that doesn't impact society much. The things physicists have contributed is their knowledge. For instance, computers, air planes, cars, and pretty much any technology you see is made from an Engineer, who can make these incredible things because of our understanding of physics. Although many aren't aware of the physics of our world, it does make up everything you see and everything you do.
Overall physicists are very under rated. They help with our understanding of everything around us. Creating the foundation of technology which drives our growing world. This career path is a hard and peculiar one, but the laws we humans discover will benefit us for as long as our race continues and forever after it ends. This is an amazing field and is filled with surprises. For the young star gazer, this truly is the dream job.
Shannon is only 13 with big plans for her future....:)
Sunday, April 28, 2013
OUT OF SIGHT: OUT OF MIND: LATE TERM ABORTION
When my brother’s girlfriend announced she was pregnant, my mother and I were happy for them. My brother was approaching 40 and had never been a father. He had reconnected with a former girlfriend and the two had become an item once again. According to Michelle, she had always wanted a baby with my brother and we were happy to share in their joyous news.
Months passed. Michelle was now in her 5th month. We found out the baby was a girl. Since we are a family where girls are a rarity, we were thrilled to find out this news. One day when I was visiting my mother, she showed me a pretty white baby shawl she had gotten for Michelle’s baby. Other baby items began piling up at her house. A baby shower for the expectant mother was in the early stages of planning.
And then things turned ugly.
Between 26 – 27 weeks into her pregnancy, Michelle had an abortion. She didn’t tell anyone, including my brother until after the event. He found out when her baby bump had simply disappeared. Her excuse, “Well there was probably something wrong with the baby anyway.”
Michelle disappeared from my brother’s life, leaving us devastated with the noticeable void in our lives. My mother’s heart was broken. So was mine. My brother was horrified by it all.
My grief turned to anger. How did someone plan a baby and then just kill it? Get people emotionally involved and then break their hearts? How could someone have pictures of an ultrasound and show them off proudly to family members, only to later allow some doctor to rip the same baby from her womb in a gruesome fashion?
Recently in the news Kermit Gosnell‘s abortion clinic massacre made me relive the slaying of my niece. Since we live about 45 minutes from Philadelphia, I had to wonder where Michelle had gotten her abortion. She had kept it pretty secretive. But now I realize my niece was killed in the same brutal fashion as Kermit Gosnell’s littlest victims. Whether my niece was inside her mother or outside when her heart stopped, her death was still tragic and totally unjustified. I cringe to think of the pain this little girl must have suffered in her last moments.
There is nothing gentle or kind in an abortion. The baby is considered a fetus with no rights to life. But we live in an “out of sight, out of mind” society. No one cares as long as it isn’t affecting them. The unborn child has no voice. It relies on the mercy of its mother to give it life outside the womb, because until that little boy or girl is born, it isn’t really considered a living being - if it’s unwanted. But if it’s a wanted baby, then wow how things are viewed differently.
Late term abortion needs to stop. Why do these women wait so long to have these abortions? You don’t need to be religious to see the wrong in what is being done across our country. We will never know what goes on in abortion clinics. And it is so much worse in other countries. There is no such thing as a gentle abortion. American children are being murdered every day. People scream that it’s a “woman’s right.”
You don't need to be religious, a politician, straight or gay to see this is wrong. We all have something in common. We to were once in the womb.
Whether you agree with me or not, you have that choice.
But unborn children have no choice. No voice. They are at the mercy of their mothers and the hands that deliver them dead or alive.
I am ashamed of my fellow man, who remain silent in the plight of these helpless babies.
I am ashamed of my fellow man, who remain silent in the plight of these helpless babies.
By author: Tamera Lawrence
*Names have been changed to protect privacy
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
HARVEST BLEND: Short Story written by Tamera Lawrence
Ernie Holloway slapped water over his face. The water bucket turned murky. He picked up a towel, rubbed his face and hung it over a tree branch. Eyes followed him. A familiar itch danced in his belly. In the distance, smoke billowed from his neighbor’s house. He squinted, suspiciously. There she was again, watching him from her kitchen window. Miss Nosy Body gawked at him, putting on airs. It was the third time this week. Well he’d give her a show to see. Without much ado, he promptly dropped his pants, revealing long underwear. With a jerk of his head, he smiled sweetly. Stunned, she bolted out of sight. He rolled his head back and laughed. The sound echoed across the distance.
Whistling, Ernie returned to his house, sat on his porch and lit his pipe. He puffed for a while, enjoying the tranquility. Scent of fall harvest slipped through the twilight, mingled with pungent smoke. His prize pumpkin sat in the back of his wagon. Tomorrow he’d enter it in the county festival. It was the biggest pumpkin he had ever grown. Surely, he’d receive a prize ribbon. Emily would have been proud.
His wife’s face loomed in his mind. Emily had loved the annual festival, entering many contests. Although his wife had been dead for ten years, he thought of her this time of year. Childless, he lived alone, except for livestock. He preferred it that way.
A scream broke the silence.
Ernie bolted out of the chair and leaped from the porch. Who was yelling? He stared at his neighbor’s yard. There stood Greta Gibbon, miss high and mighty herself. The widow twirled around in circles, flapping her apron with her hands. She appeared to be engaged in a strange ritual dance.
Without further ado, Ernie ran to her aid. Yellow jackets swarmed around Greta in a gathering storm, furious over her intrusion into their nest. He grabbed Greta’s hand, yanked her along into her house and slammed shut the door. Greta slapped at the bees that clung to her dress, howling and mumbling illogically. Ernie helped in her task, turned her around and swatted at the bees along her backside.
“Mr. Holloway,” she gasped, jerking around. “Please mind your hands.”
Stunned, he stepped away as she finished checking her clothes. His skin throbbed from the stings he bore on her behalf. Finally, she finished, lifted her chin and gave him a haughty glare.
“I think I am fine now, Mr. Holloway,” she declared. “Good evening to you, sir.” And with that, she dismissed him with a snap of fingers.
“Well that’s a fine how do you do,” he mumbled, scratching his stubble chin. “Not even a thank you.”
“I did not invite your intrusion, Mr. Holloway,” she said directly. “But beings that you have forced your assistance, I now bid you good evening.”
“If I had not assisted you, Ms. Gibbons, you would still be running around in circles out in your back yard.“ He smirked, the image appealing. “Bees would be filling your belly by now.”
“You are most crude.” She sniffed, wrinkling her nose. “As you can see, I am quite fine.”
“Yes, I can see you are.” He cracked a wry smile. Her face was swollen from the many stings. She had to be in pain, yet her pride remained ever intact. “You are back to your delightful ways.”
“Humph.” She eyed him like an insect. “I detect sarcasm in your voice. Do not mock me. I am not a county bumpkin like the folk around these parts.”
“That’s right. You are from the city. Tell me, why are you living here amongst us country bumpkins?”
“Not that it is any of your concern,” she said. “But I followed my son here to be closer to my family. My granddaughter was born a week ago.”
“Yes. I heard her crying through my bedroom window. That child could stir the dead.”
“Cad,” she said. “She is just an infant. You are a peculiar man.”
“Perhaps. But my habits are my business. You should keep your eyes and noise in your own back yard. But I suppose that would be a boring proposition.”
“You talk to your vegetables.”
“You talk to your cat.”
“My cat is an animal.”
“ My vegetables are plants.”
“I find it absurd.” She crossed her arms, scowling. “It’s not natural.”
“My plants bloom even in drought.”
“You think too much of yourself.”
“You are welcome to move anytime.”
“I shall have to talk to my son about the very notion.”
“I’m sure he’d like to send you packing back to the city.” Her face paled considerably.
“Get out.” She opened the door.
After his morning chores, Ernie readied himself for the festival. Despite his hopes of winning a ribbon, his eyes often strayed to Greta’s house. As he readied the cart, eyes watched him. She was at it again. He saluted her. The curtain moved as she jerked away.
Just as he was about to leave, Greta approached. Her face looked terrible and raw.
“Good morning to you, Ms Gibbons.”
“You look a sight,” she said mockingly. “How can you allow yourself to be seen at the festival?”
“I am not a handsome man,” he commented. “A splotch or two on my face will make no difference.” A glimmer of a smile hinted her mouth.
Greta walked around the wagon, staring derisively at the pumpkin. “So you think that ghastly thing will win a prize.”
“I win ever year,” he boasted.
“I suppose you think it’s because you talk to it while it grows.”
“My little secret.” He winked.
“Humph.” She patted the pumpkin. “What will you do with it after?”
“Sell it at market.”
“Don’t you ever cook it up and make pies.”
“Well it’s just fortunate that for you I make the best pumpkin pie in the county. But I have one question?”
“What will you tell it when I bring out my knife?”