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Acts of Surrender: A Writer's Memoir Paperback – December 27, 2013
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This month's Book With Buzz: "The Lying Game" by Ruth Ware
From the instant New York Times bestselling author of blockbuster thrillers "In a Dark, Dark Wood" and "The Woman in Cabin 10" comes Ruth Ware’s chilling new novel, "The Lying Game." See more
About the Author
The award-winning author of more than a dozen books whose readers span the globe, Mark David Gerson electrifies groups and individuals around the world with his inspiring stories and motivational talks, seminars and workshops.
Mark David's books include critically acclaimed titles for writers, spellbinding fiction and compelling memoirs. His screenplay adaptations of his Q'ntana Trilogy fantasy novels are on their way to theaters as a trio of epic feature films.
Known as "The Birthing Your Book Guru," Mark David works with an international roster of clients to help them get their stories onto the page and into the world with ease. Having overcome his own writing challenges, he is uniquely qualified to fire up novices and seasoned professionals in any genre to unleash the power of their creative potential and get their writing project done.
Passionate, inspiring, insightful and intuitive, Mark David Gerson is a highly sought-after speaker, coach, editorial consultant and media guest.
• Follow Mark David on Facebook at www.facebook.com/markdavidgerson.page and Twitter @markdavidgerson
• More about Mark David at www.markdavidgerson.com
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Top customer reviews
I met Mark David more than five years ago. We connected as writers and later as close friends. Beyond these connections–and much deeper– was the path and journey we were both consciously embracing and walking through life- one that might be called facing ones most intimate and often overwhelming fears. Throughout my journey, I've referred to many people who's path I've crossed as "mentors", "coaches", or "teachers" as they were seemingly further along the path than I and perhaps had some foresight I found valuable. Yet what I've noticed is most of those folks have receded off into the ethers and the one person left who had only his life, his example, as a teaching remains. I don't mean to imply Mark David doesn't have tremendously heart centered and extraordinarily valuable teachings– he absolutely does. However, in our relationship/friendship, it was never about that. Despite being twenty years junior, he's always treated me as an equal, as a companion or fellow traveler rather than a new kid on the block getting his feet wet. To me, that is art of the master. A true master.
Acts of surrender is Mark David's story of mastery in my opinion. It is his epic story, his journey of rediscovering his true essence out of the illusive shackles of fear that seem to have their way with all of us and find a hiding spot beneath every stone imaginable. This journey, is not for the faint of heart. In fact, even with the experience in life I'd mustered, it took me years to be able to pick up this book and finally be able read it. What he's gone through terrified me. I can't tell you the number of times while reading I was shaking and hoping the experiences he's had to go through would never be mine. Well, they have been in their own way. Not because of reading this book. But because they are my journey. His courage would have to be mine too!
Acts of Surrender will undeniably push your buttons too. It will take you right into the mouth of your fears as Mark David lovingly and poetically guides you through as if a cherished friend were there holding your hand. And, if you're lucky enough to befriend this incredible man there certainly will be.
Acts of Surrender, in my opinion, is an absolute must read for anyone traveling this path. There's no spiritual ego to contend with and no teachings other than those of a life lived fully by a courageous man who chose to not to travel the beaten path. It could be a textbook in its own right of the path we must walk at most times, completely alone and totally vulnerable.
Having explored the world of spiritual teachings, I must say many "teachers" have a way of seemingly avoiding their life story as if they magically woke up one day into purported bliss and somehow their poop no longer has a foul odor. In other words, the mess they made along the way gets pushed aside or hidden behind "teachings". Well, that's certainly one way to go about teaching. But to me it seems so impersonal and on some levels inauthentic. That's not the case with Mark David. He lays it all out there courageously, naked, clothed only in his truth. This, in my opinion, is what signifies the true teacher.
I will eternally be grateful to the friendship, the honesty, and integrity Mark David has shared with me and the ways he's been the silent teacher on so many levels in my own life. Sadly, this is not the type of teaching that most people are interested in or buy. It's not a story of everlasting peace, ecstasy or bliss sold in the pop culture spiritual market. You know, name your kids after cute Zen sayings, burn some incense, do a little meditation or yoga, turn vegetarian, etc. This is where the s*** hits the fan and the real journey begins. BRAVO!
What makes this memoir so powerful is the combination of the so-deeply-intimate subject matter meeting up with a writer who is gifted in the vocabulary of soulful self expression...one who is willing to bare it all and hold nothing back in service to sharing with us what a lifelong quest feels like and, at times, demands. Reading such a story told by a writer, who is also a teacher and who learns from all that he teaches, is a gift everyone seeking more from life should give themselves.
If you love a great memoir and are intrigued by the sharing of the nitty gritty details of a life authentically lived--regardless of the obstacles this presents--then read this book! It will inspire you, empower you to make more authentic choices in your own life, and give you courage to chase after your own dreams by listening to and following your own inner voice.
Although I normally love to hold a book in my hands, I really enjoyed reading this as an e-Book on my small tablet device. Something about the smaller chunks of text on each page made the story seem even more intimate, if that is possible.
One of the pieces of advice he gives you in his excellent writing books is that you should "share your vulnerability." So what would this memoir be if he didn't do just that? And do it he does, with admirable diligence. Lest you think that's easy, he notes, "there is no need for surrender where fear is absent, just as there is no need for courage." This is an intensely personal book, but with a goal: to show you how he has made it this far.
And so Mark David gives you all the behind-the-scenes challenges and joys of the author's life: from losing or shedding everything he owns several times over, to the intangible rewards of the writing, to the personal ups and downs of love, friendships, parents. The joys of nature and traveling, of children. Trouble with skunks and cars. Doubts, fears, guilt. Breakthroughs. What emerges is a brave portrait of a person always looking for the meaning of situations, always trusting that such meaning exists. And always finding it, though rarely in the way he expects. (Hence, the surrender.) The Muse, always calling.
The story culminates in this remarkable statement: "What I came to know, in those early days back in New Mexico, even before I gave up my car, was that I was no longer prepared to struggle or make compromises to stay afloat or, if it came to that, to stay alive." If that's not commitment, I don't know what is. And that is why Mark David has been an inspiration to me personally in the years I've known him, both as a writer whose example is partly responsible for my own attempts and as a human being trying to find something higher.
This book, quite simply, shows you why he'll inspire you too.
Most recent customer reviews
December 10, 2013
My first contact with Mark David Gerson’s work was his excellent book,...Read more
One reads a biography or an autobiography to find out more about a public figure eg politician, celebrity or writer.Read more