Sunday, 18 May 2014

Meditation on Space-Time by Leonard Seet: Interview + Giveaway

Meditation on Space-Time
by Leonard Seet

Genre: Philosophy
Paperback, 236 pages
Published November 2012 by Excelsior Publishing
Even as Father Lawrence was hearing the stranger’s confession, he dreamed of probability waves, black holes and temporal loops. He came to Gilead to search for his friend Camellia, not to hear about this penitent’s vices: seducing women, framing rivals and laundering church-funds. After he had chased the penitent through the sanctuary into the church graveyard and lost the man, he found a note that revealed a connection to Camellia.

When he learned that Camellia was pregnant with this man’s child, he knew the time to play ostrich was over. But ever since the girl whom he had counseled, committed suicide, he preferred distancing himself from others than engaging their struggles. And ever since falling out with his best friend, he preferred contemplating the duality of space-time to sorting out his own joy and grief and love and hatred. If only he could free himself from his emotional scum… if only he could marshal the courage to polish off his search for enlightenment…

He would discover the hidden identities behind each face and Camellia’s helping the villain to bring him down. When faced with betrayal, he would lock himself in his cabin and struggled between retreating to his meditation on space-time and confronting the villain. He would renounce his vow and learn to equate a dollar with a cheeseburger. He would buy a gun without knowing how to load the magazine. He would search for his enemy. But when faced with the gun barrel, Father Lawrence would have to contemplate death… only to hear the three shots that saluted the dark night…

Either mercy or justice; either salvation or friendship. Either choice: a flawed solution for a fallen man in a broken world.

Meditation on Space-Time portrays a man’s struggle to discover his identity in contemporary society, to sacrifice for his friends and to take the road less traveled. For readers who would eat up the hero’s every morsel of laughter and tear as if each were bittersweet chocolate. While sifting through clues to the characters’ true identities and hidden agendas.

About the Author

Leonard Seet is the author of the novel Meditation On Space-Time and the non-fiction The Spiritual Life. Through

his writings, he probes the dynamics of existence, including human consciousness, good and evil, and rationality and spirituality. His articles appear on Blogging Authors.

While working overseas as Project Director for a consumer electronics company, Leonard came upon a parchment, which he had drafted in college after booing a novel’s ending. The chicken-scratches had begun to fade, but he succeeded in deciphering the text. The writing was amateurish, but the plot had potential. So, to relieve work stress, he began rewriting the story, along the way learning the art of the trade. Several years later, he resigned from the company to write short stories and literary novels.

His favorite novels include The Brothers Karamozov, War and Peace, 1984, The Stranger, and The Road. And his favorite non-fictions include New Seeds of Contemplation, Moral Man and Immoral Society, The Creative Mind, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, and The Competitive Advantages of Nations.

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Q & A with author Leonard Seet

Q:  Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
Father Lawrence is a monk who struggles between his longing for solitude and contemplation and his desire to engage the world. He wishes to meditate on space-time and reconcile spirituality with modern physics. And because of his past emotional wounds, he wants to develop deep friendships, but fears getting hurt again. So, he is a man of conflicts and he struggles intellectually and emotionally and for him, the battle becomes his spiritual journey.

If Father Lawrence seeks enlightenment, then his friend Ichiro seeks perfection. His fiancée's tragic death propels Ichiro to seek beauty and perfection through death. He desires to match her death with his so their love may last eternally.

Lawrence's other friend Camellia seeks happiness. Her abuse at home drove her away from her parents and she seeks above all someone to care about her, to love her and treasure her. That need drives her to the psychopathic Jim Whitfield, who only knows how to use others to gratify his desires.

Q:  How long have you been writing, and when did you first consider yourself an author?
I have been writing fulltime for about six years and considered myself an author from the start. Of course, before writing fulltime I have on and off written stories. The first one was during senior year in high school.

Q:  Describe your ideal writing spot.
A cabin by the lake with the view of the mountains. Something like Lake Louise without the tourists.

Q:  What do you see as influences on your writing style?
Meditation on Space-Time is more lyrical, like Proust's writings. But my recent novels are more toned-down, like Hemingway's writings. I am also exploring stream-of-consciousness. For me, the style has to match the story's content and format. So I look for the style once I have the plot, POV, etc.

Q:  What do you do to unwind and relax?
I work on sudokus, crosswords and jigsaw puzzles and listen to classical and new age music. I hike in nearby trails and work out regularly to keep myself in shape. But of course, reading, fiction or non-fiction, is the ultimate relaxation.

Q:  Hard/paperbacks or eBooks?
Meditation on Space-Time is available in paperback and eBook. I don't mind reading in any format, just give me good writings and good stories.

Q:  What book are you reading now?
I just read Herman Koch's The Dinner and love the way he uses the unreliable narrator to reveal the characters' personalities and biases. I am reading Knut Hamsun's Hunger, a powerful novel about an intellectual in late nineteenth century Norway trying to keep from starving while maintaining his dignity and sanity. My favorite book is Dostoyevsky's The Brothers Karamozov.

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