When the foam opened, green and white parcels of paper stared at Howard Kirby. He pushed his hand into the foam cushion; he could feel more packets! Kirby pulled a couple out. The green and white paper packets were wrapped in separate packages – transparent plastic neatly divided several stacks. Some notes – marking the packets – were written on the packets to label the small parcels. It was meticulously organised.
Slowly he pulled all the packets out. He placed it on the couch; some packets fell on the ground. He grabbed the cushion by the ears and shook every packet out. He checked, and double-checked, the pocket in the foam was empty. While holding the cushion in both hands, his eyes were transfixed on the green and white coloured packets laying on the couch and the ground. He placed the cushion back on the ottoman and picked up two packets – one in each hand….
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Read more: https://fivehousepublishing.com/blog/
More about the author: http://williamvanzyl.com/
Fantasy Prophecy is a fascinating and compelling technique for Writing Fiction and Non-fiction.
When writers use this technique successfully – just like Herman Melville in Moby Dick and Shakespeare in Macbeth – it advances their stories to a new level. The two famous authors display their accomplished writing skills by applying this technique very successfully. They produce anticipation, mystery, and suspense. In this podcast, I compare the prophecy techniques in the two stories. Read the full blog post:
From the author’s sketchbook: Mobi Dick (by Herman Melville). The self-prophesy of Queequeg (harpooner on the whaling ship, the Pequod): “I am going to die – I will build me a coffin.” Ink and watercolour. Credit: William Van Zyl.
Planning prophecy in fiction is a fine art.
The writer has to plan and consider how much information will be revealed in the prophecy. A touch of mystery is recommended. In fact, including a sort of code will also work well. The writer has to plan the structure of the story. Alternatively, if no planning is included, the writer has to go back and do much editing. It is best if the writer spends a considerable amount of time thinking about the storyline, including the prophecy and the eventual fulfilment, or an unexpected twist. Lean into the ideas before writing. Sleep it over. Think on paper: A diagram or a simple freehand sketch with annotations – before the writing begins – could save the author many hours of rewriting and editing. Read typical prophecy-based stories to develop the skill before attempting the story. It could also be subtle words and concepts that point to future events in the novel. The same technique could also be implemented in non-fiction. However, it is pretty challenging.
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Harrison – not Harrison Ford – is trapped. It is day three.
Off the East coast of Africa, in a remote part of the ocean, 32 km from land, the Nigerian man is praying.
“God, I am done praying. I am giving it over to You. Let it be as it is in Heaven. You have never failed me in the past, I know You will not fail me now.”
After hours and hours of prayer, this is his last prayer – he stops – he is at peace.
It is dark – pitch dark – it has been for days. The only sound he can hear is his shallow breathing. It is getting shallower by the hour.
Then, there is a nibble, “what could that be?” he holds his breath. He listens…..
See the diagrams and excellent sketches (watercolours and more) that provide much detail to this compelling true story!
Read the full blogpost:
Sketchbook: The digestive chemicals in the belly of the fish could have killed Johah. How did he survive? The fish that swallowed Jonah, was it a plant-eating fish or was the large fish a carnivore? Credit: Author. April 2020.
Have you ever been rowing in a rowboat without a rudder? You paddle hard; however, you have no control over your direction. A proper rudder – with well-chosen oars – will make your work easy!
You won’t believe how simple it is to set goals and achieve them. It is just like rowing in a rowboat! The most important thing is making small marginal changes in the way you do things. How do you eat an elephant? The answer is piece by piece. Here – in this article – I will share with you what I have learned about achieving a personal goal.
Read the blogpost here (includes images and watercolour sketches):
The story is about Harrison Okene that was trapped in the hull of a tugboat for nearly 3 days. He was rescued dramatically by divers. Credit: Author – April 2020. You can read the story online.
My sketchbook with inspiration in the background for the sketch. The inspiration for this sketch came from a fishing boat image (pixabay.com). It is a Moroccan fishing boat with oars. In the front of my sketch is some of my sketching equipment – ink pens (Lamy), watercolours (Schminke), pencil (6B) and a soft rubber.
By William Van Zyl (Published in 2021)
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I have been pondering: what would the shortest academic paper in the world look like?
After a search here are some examples: See the blog post.
What would your shortest academic writing look like? APA style (American Psychology Association).
What subject matter would you choose? In this article, I am going to endeavour to write my most concise and shortest academic paper! While I am writing, stop for a while and think about what your shortest educational writing effort could look like? Use the typical renowned APA referencing method.
But wait. This will make you smile. If you are not familiar with writing, there is a thing called writer’s block. A person who saw the funny side to the writer’s block produced a hilariously short academic paper. Here is the quirky and ridiculously short paper: See the blog post for details on the academic paper.
Investigating the first sound and light in our universe. Evolution and Creation.
See the blog post: https://fivehousepublishing.com/2021/04/28/the-first-light-and-sound-in-our-universe-contrasting-creation-and-evolution/
The famous novel by Saint-Ex – a children’s book written in French – is about a young prince who visits various planets in space, including Earth, and addresses themes of loneliness, friendship, love, and loss. The Little Prince makes observations about life and human nature. The book is said to have many layers of life lessons locked into an unusual story. Several people have commented that the lessons they have learned from the book have impacted their lives.
I focus on one of the lesson’s I have identified in the article:
LIFE LESSON FROM THE LITTLE PRINCE: We must have the courage to be adventurous and to explore, reaching beyond the horizon to expand; at the same time, we have to be willing to manage a little anxiety. It is beneficial to us!
We tend to stay inside our “comfort zones” because it is easier than taking risks. When we get older, we must use the time we have on Earth to try different experiences, meet new people, and travel the world…
The engine of the Japanese fighter plane screams as it dives almost vertical out of the clear blue sky. The giant frigate battleship enlarges at an alarming rate from inside the cockpit. The unfriendly surface of the ocean races towards the pilot. Death-defying. The sun flashes off the wings of the plane as if giving a final signal. Desperately, the plane wants to transmit a warning in staccato-Morse Code. Then, the engine sputters and spews a desperate smoke signal. ‘S-O-S.’
The engine is screaming,
‘Imminent danger, imminent danger!’
As the plane plunges into the ocean, the red sun rising on the fuselage disappears eerily into the foaming sea.
After this catastrophic event, the voice of the pilot goes silent. Decades later, a mysterious artefact is discovered. Once discovered, the artefact leads to the most striking revelations and finds. What could the artefact be? What is the secret story behind the mystery? All the past events are unwittingly uncovered. Mystery upon mystery is unlocked. What could the hidden codes mean? What are the secrets behind the written code and the map? (Christian Theme)
Comments by others:
‘The Encoded Pen is a story that demonstrates that love, hope, and faith is stronger than death. The legacy of love, which Haruto leaves behind, speaks across generations. The mysterious and secret codes – woven throughout this novel – makes this book a riveting and intriguing read.’
Chris Hill – Editor
‘An interesting and imaginative story. Well detailed.’
John Carstensen (Author)
Download at: https://fivehousepublishing.com/product/the-encoded-pen/
More about the Author: http://williamvanzyl.com/
2 to the power of 15 = 15 32,768. Isn’t that just stunning? I mean in one second you have to count from 1 to 32,768 – it is humanly impossible. It is this vibration that has me in awe in this article. Wait for it. That same 32,768-quartz-crystal makes a clock tick at one beat per second! But how?
It all started when my wife asked me to replace the batteries of two of the quartz clocks in our home. You will see them. They run on penlight batteries (AA). One of the clocks casings are translucent; the mechanisms are visible through the light-grey case. It is very inexpensive and costs about $5 to $12 (US). Why all the fuss about such a cheap product? That is precisely the point—the miracle in the $8 mechanism. I have searched how a quartz clock works; you don’t have to. It is then that I discovered the super brilliant video of Steve Mould on quartz clocks. Make sure you view it!
Read the article online (see the images and sketches):
More about the author: http://williamvanzyl.com/
Artesian Well Theory – The pressure in your aquifer could destroy you, or it could catapult you into a path of growth and development. Blog – https://fivehousepublishing.com/