Posts tagged with "author"

Inhuman illustration by Heather Skovlund (Cover art for Inhuman provided by Smith Publicity) for 360 Magazine

Eric Leland × Inhuman

A Gripping Military Horror with Shocking Supernatural Twists

Q&A WITH ERIC LELAND:

AUTHOR OF Inhuman MILITARY THRILLER DEBUT

Question: What inspired you to write Inhuman?

Eric Leland: During a class for my MA I wrote a 25-page short story titled Recon Team: Mercury. That story was shortened to five pages and is now the prologue to Inhuman. For a NaNoWriMo idea I thought it would be interesting to see what happened when the rescuers came looking for the team that disappeared in my original short story. Inhuman is the result.

Q: What sets Inhuman apart from other military and horror books?

EL: The bravado one comes to expect when reading military fiction is quickly ripped away to expose and pick at the delicate flesh of fear and self-doubt we are ashamed to admit exists.

Q: What do you hope readers will take away from the book?

EL: It was never my intent for Inhuman to be didactic. Primarily I hope readers are entertained. I hope readers will remember the experience of Inhuman rather than any particular lesson.

Q: Inhuman features a diverse cast of characters. How did your military friendships, and experiences with “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” inform this inclusivity?

EL: A diverse cast adds verisimilitude to military fiction simply because any U.S. military unit features a diverse roster. In my first combat experience I found myself fighting shoulder to shoulder with Mexican Americans, an African American, and a gay woman. Unfortunately, DADT was still a thing for most of my military career and I would only find out after DADT was repealed that some of my greatest friends were gay. I think truth in fiction is important, and if I did not write a diverse cast I would by lying. Readers can spot a lie from a mile out.

Q: How did you develop your characters? And which of them do you have the strongest connection to?

EL: The character Jaran is heavily based on my wife’s experiences who was born in Vietnam. At an early age, she and her family fled to a refugee camp after the war. The chaos of displacement during war time seemed terrifying. I can’t really say which character I have the strongest connection to—John’s sense of duty; Chris’s refusal to take anything seriously; and Brandon’s severe depression and self-doubt—they’re all variations of me.

Eric Leland grew up in Massena, NY and entered Army basic training upon high school graduation. He was an MP in the Army for six years and reclassified to a Special Agent with the Army Criminal Investigation Division. Eric deployed to Honduras in 2002, and Iraq in 2003 and 2009 where he was awarded an Army Commendation Medal with “V” device for valor. He completed his MA in Creative Writing from Southern New Hampshire University and has happily traded in his gun for a pen. Eric lives in Seattle with his wife. Connect with Eric Leland on Facebook, Instagram, and Goodreads.

Inhuman is available on Amazon in both print and digital.

Audiobook forthcoming in Summer 2021.

Outsider Project illustration by Heather Skovlund (original artwork: Henry Darger)for 360 Magazine

Outsider Project × Henry Darger

OUTSIDER PROJECT CELEBRATES WORLD-RENOWNED CHICAGO ARTIST HENRY DARGER’S BIRTHDAY

French musician Philippe Cohen Solal found material ripe for musical expression in Chicago-born author and artist Henry Darger’s drawings, paintings, writings, life story and lyrics. The award-winning Cohen Solal drew from Darger’s oeuvre to compose OUTSIDER, an album and transmedia project honoring the renowned outsider artist. In celebration of Darger’s birthday on Monday, April 12, Intuit partners with Cohen Solal and Musee Art Moderne de Paris (MAM) on the launch of OUTSIDER, in which Cohen Solal will present an excerpt from the project live from MAM on the website at noon central time.

In the baroque pop album OUTSIDER, musicians Philippe Cohen Solal, Mike Lindsay, Adam Glover and Hannah Peel turn Darger’s paintings and writings into melodies. The album is available now on streaming platforms and the website an immersive bilingual website featuring music videos and a short film. Releasing in English on Wednesday, April 14, the accompanying bilingual podcast retraces Darger’s story through the testimonies of the people who knew him and studied and exhibited his work. Hear stories from the artist’s former landlord, Kiyoko Lerner, and learn more about the Henry Darger Room Collection, which Cohen Solal used as inspiration, from Intuit President and CEO Debra Kerr.

“It’s exciting to see Darger’s influence in new mediums. Philippe has long been inspired by both seeing the artworks in person and his visit to the Henry Darger Room at Intuit. As Darger is Intuit’s most closely associated artist and many people’s entry to the genre of outsider art, I’m always interested to see new creativity catalyzed by his story and body of work,” says Kerr. “In this case, Philippe and his colleagues have treated Henry’s legacy with the utmost respect, honor and care. Darger’s story is shrouded in mystery, and I am happy when new interpretations stay true to what we know and can uncover with rigorous scholarship. I send my warm congratulations.”

Although Darger and his mysterious artwork have been of interest to the art world for several decades now, the outsider artist lived life in obscurity as a hospital janitor. Lerner’s husband, Nathan, discovered Darger’s work shortly before the artist’s death in 1972, and the couple shared it with outsider art enthusiasts and scholars who became fascinated by him over time.

As the pandemic keeps people removed from one another, an exploration of the notably isolated Darger is especially relevant. Cohen Solal’s interest in and repurposing of Darger’s work into new artforms speak to the universality and timeless emotional rawness of the late creator’s life and work. Celebrate Darger’s legacy at this commemorative program that is sure to delight and inspire fans around the world.

For more news from Intuit, visit our press room.

ABOUT INTUIT

Founded in 1991, Intuit is a premier museum of outsider and self-taught art, defined as work created by artists who faced marginalization, overcame personal odds to make their artwork, and who did not, or sometimes could not, follow a traditional path of art making, often using materials at hand to realize their artistic vision. By presenting a diversity of artistic voices, Intuit builds a bridge from art to audiences. The museum’s mission to celebrate the power of outsider artis grounded in the ethos that powerful art can be found in unexpected places and made by unexpected creators.

Intuit is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and Saturday and reserves admission by appointment for guests who are in an increased risk group. More information on the website.

Intuit is generously supported by the following organizations: Alphawood Foundation Chicago; anonymous foundations; Art Dealers Association of America Foundation; Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events; Crown Family Philanthropies; Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation; Field Foundation; Illinois Arts Council Agency; Illinois Humanities; MacArthur Fund for Culture, Equity, and the Arts at Prince; National Endowment for the Arts; Polk Bros Foundation; Prince Charitable Trust; and Terra Foundation for American Art.

Album cover with original artwork: Henry Darger, Spangled Blengins. Edible. Boy King Islands. One is a young Tuskerhorian the other a human headed Dortherean
Album cover with original artwork: Henry Darger, Spangled Blengins. Edible. Boy King Islands. One is a young Tuskerhorian the other a human headed Dortherean
Chas Parker book cover illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

A Timeless Legacy

Ford Model T
An Enthusiast’s Guide
1908 to 1927 (all models and variants)

“I will build a car for the great multitude” stated Henry Ford, and so he did. The Ford Model T, or the ‘Tin Lizzie’ and the ‘Flivver’ as it was also known, transformed American society, bringing mobility through car ownership to millions of middle-class Americans at a time when the horse and the railroad were the only real viable means of transport.

Using moving assembly lines and the best possible materials, between 1 October 1908 and 26 May 1927, Ford built around 16.5 million examples of this extraordinary car. By 1918, half of all cars built in America were Model Ts and by 1925 around 8,000 a day were being produced, making Henry Ford one of the world’s best-known manufacturers of automobiles.

The selection of body styles varied from two- and four-seat open and closed models – tourers, town cars, runabouts, landaulets, and cabriolets – to vans and pick-up trucks, and customers could also have colors other than black!

This guide provides an insight into the design and construction of the Model T and many of its numerous variants, and the uses to which they were put, along with details of the background to Henry Ford himself and the car.

Highlights of the book include:

  • The Ford Model T story – the background of Henry Ford and his Ford Motor Company and the development of the Model T
  • Anatomy of a Ford Model T – detailed insight with photographs and diagrams
  • The engineer’s view – an insight from two leading experts, Chris Barker and Neil Tuckett
  • The driver’s view – description of the controls and driving technique for the Model T
  • The owner’s view – first-hand accounts from five Model T owners about why the car appeals to them
  • Competition history – including Indianapolis 500, Le Mans 24-hours and ‘Pig ‘n Ford’ races in America
  • Endless varieties – including trucks, ambulances, fire engines, army patrol cars and even rail cars
  • Restoration – Three UK-based specialists talk about their projects
  • Adventures – a trip across the North Island of New Zealand and a drive to the top of Ben Nevis in Scotland

The Author


Chas Parker is a long-time motor racing enthusiast who has written many books about motor sport and historic racing cars, including comprehensive histories of Brand Hatch and Silverstone and Haynes Owners’ Workshop Manuals for the D-type Jaguar, Bugatti Type 35 and Lola T70. He has also written a number of books for Porter Press International, including The Michael Turner Collection and was shortlisted, together with co-author Philip Porter, for the 2017 RAC Motoring Book of the Year Award for his work on the 1953 Le Mans-winning C-type Jaguar, XKC 051. He lives in East Sussex with his partner, Diane.

Chris Crowley's The Practical Navigator book press image for use by 360 Magazine

Chris Crowley’s “The Practical Navigator”

Chris Crowley is the author (with the late Henry S. Lodge, MD) of “Younger Next Year, the New York Times bestseller, with over two million copies sold in twenty-three languages. A former Wall Street trial lawyer, Crowley’s debut work of fiction is “The Practical Navigator” now available everywhere books are sold.

Read below for an excerpt adapted from “The Practical Navigator,” a literary legal crime thriller.

July 1988, Broken Harbor  

Harry’s death was utterly like him: orderly, decisive, and oddly considerate. He sailed to Maine without telling a soul—left a note saying he was going on a business trip but of course he wasn’t. He picked up his boat in Marion and sailed overnight to Broken Island, seven miles off the coast of Maine, near the Canadian border. It’s a big boat, over fifty feet, but it has all kinds of gadgets so it wasn’t hard for someone like Harry to do it alone. Actually, he wasn’t entirely alone. He had stopped at the New York apartment and picked up Gus, the big black Newfoundland, to keep him company on this . . . this journey, I guess. He got there late in the afternoon, furled the sails, and set the anchor with his usual care. Then he fed the dog and had something himself, down below. Put the dishes in the sink and opened a bottle of wine, which he took up into the cockpit. A very good bottle of wine, but he only had the one glass. It was a sacrament, I imagine; he didn’t really drink.

 No one was there so I can’t tell, but it looks as if Harry sat there for quite a while, with Gus at his side. I see them with great clarity: there is Gus, with his huge head on Harry’s lap and Harry calmly looking around, his hands working the thick black fur around Gus’s neck and ears. Or I see them both, sitting up now, looking at the beach and that remarkable shoreline, the sun going down over the Cut. It is the loveliest place. Then he shuts Gus down below. One imagines the intimate business of getting Gus down the steps. Harry stands at the bottom of the companionway, and gets his arms around him (a face full of fur, legs every which way; Gus’s great face is interested but relaxed: they’ve done this a hundred times). Then he picks him up, all hundred pounds of him, and gently sets him down on the cabin sole. Sets out some water. Harry put him below because he didn’t want him to see. Or more likely, he was afraid the dog would jump in and try to save him, as Newfies are bred to do. 

 Then, after he had lowered the guardrail on the starboard side, he got the Camden marine operator to call the sheriff, Bud Wilkerson, over in Hanson, and told him what he was about to do. Hung up before Bud could say anything, but wanted him to know so he’d come out and get the dog. Then he put on his commodore’s cap—an old-fashioned hat with a small, shiny visor and a narrow crown, the kind worn in the Navy in World War I. Do you remember the photos of Admiral Sims? Like that. That was one of a number of affectations at the Great Arcadia Yacht Club of New York, Boston, and Mount Desert, of which Harry had recently been commodore. That and the pips, the four raised brass-and-enamel symbols of his rank on each epaulet. Then Harry sat down on the gunwale with his back to the water. And blew his brains out. Here’s an interesting thing. Just before he did it, he tied a float to his leg. When he shot himself, his body went over the side, as he intended. Not a drop of blood in the boat. But it floated. So my friend Bud wouldn’t have to dive for it when he got there. Imagine thinking of that, in the closing moments of your life. Well, Harry—my brother, Harry—had a weakness for order. More than a weakness, a passion. 

He was a subtle man, entirely capable of making his way in a dark and uncertain world. But his great passion was for order. That was the real business of his life: not making an astonishing fortune as a very young man or becoming a cabinet officer, but preserving order. Against the sweet, dark pull of the Labyrinth, as it spins away, under the city, under our lives.

“The Practical Navigator” is available for purchase on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Indie Bound, and as an ebook.

"Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of Your Anxiety" by Dr. Chloe Carmichael for use by 360 Magazine

How to Use Nervous Energy to Your Advantage

By: Chloe Carmichael, Ph.D., clinical psychologist, author, “Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of Your Anxiety

Editing a speech so many times that when you’re about to present, you botch all your important lines. Stressing over your first-date outfit because it just isn’t perfect — to the point that you’re now late…and more frazzled than before. Drawing that same illustration a third time to get it to look exactly the way you want but ultimately ripping the page out of your sketchbook, frustrated and, well, over it.

If any of these scenarios feel even remotely familiar, you could be dealing with a crushing dose of what I call nervous energy. But the good news is: This type of seemingly negative energy can actually give you an edge when it comes to success. I’m so passionate about helping people understand and achieve this that I recently wrote an entire book about it, Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of Your Anxiety. In it, you’ll find nine techniques that will enable you to not only be more successful despite your nervous energy, but because of it.

What Is Nervous Energy, Anyway?

Nervous energy is that extra bit of conscientiousness, typically as a result of adrenaline, that drives you to triple-check that your oven is turned off, or that your cover letter is grammatically perfect, or that your dinner party (when we’re finally able to safely have those again) is thought out to a T. All of those are good things, of course — until your nerves go on overdrive and lead you to stress out so much that you hinder your ability to perform. That shot of adrenaline gets converted into cortisol (a stress hormone) rather than being used productively.

Unsurprisingly, people who have nervous energy tend to be perfectionists, the detail-oriented, often Type-A folks who are really hard on themselves (and sometimes others) to get things exactly right. People who have generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), or have obsessive tendencies without the medical diagnosis, also usually fall into this category. And while these groups may think of their condition as annoying (at best) or crippling (at worst), the exciting thing that they may not realize is that their anxious thoughts have an incredibly healthy, positive function: to notice areas for improvement.

What’s even more exciting is that utilizing that nervous energy as a boost in chasing your goals — versus taking steam away from them — is actually quite simple. One of my favorite techniques in my book, based on years of working with many high-functioning yet anxious clients, is called Thought Replacement. This method can help you turn the mess that is anxiety into momentum in real time.

How to Try Thought Replacement at Home

Next time your anxious mind starts acting up (like tonight, when you start harping on yourself for, say, screwing up a recipe), here’s your game plan:

  1. Congratulate yourself for having anxious thoughts.
    Yes, I said congratulate! It might sound counterintuitive to applaud yourself when you’re feeling negative feelings, but truly the best way to interrupt that self-bashing spiral is by patting yourself on the back for being aware of your tendency to pick yourself apart. This is the moment before the date when you tell yourself, “Wow, I’m hearing myself insult the way my body looks in these clothes. At least I’m a self-aware and conscious person for realizing I’m thinking that way.” Remember, your anxiety is coming from a positive place — of wanting to be the best version of yourself — so shift your perspective to feeling good about yourself for having it.
  2. Replace the anxious thoughts you have with reassuring ones.

If you’re a high-functioning person with obsessive tendencies, chances are, you have the same anxious thoughts on repeat. Your mind has more or less decided something isn’t good enough — be it your hair, your skin, your business chops — and so it cycles through the same worrying, self-doubting script every time that “thing” is on your conscience. That’s where a technique called Thought Replacement comes in. It zeroes in on the specific thoughts that are getting in your way and prepares you with deliberately chosen, constructive phrases to replace them. To stick with the first date example, if you’re obsessing over your hair before you walk out the door, then think, this person is obviously attracted to me or they wouldn’t have asked me on a date. If you always worry about not being vocal enough in meetings, then think, I wouldn’t be invited into this discussion if my team didn’t feel I belonged here. I can speak up just when I feel I have something to contribute.

Keep in mind, Thought Replacement is not always the most natural-feeling thing. And that’s OK, in the same way that if you slouch for most of your life and then suddenly start sitting up straight that would feel unnatural too. That doesn’t make proper posture any less healthy or positive for you. The same applies here: You were in a counterproductive place before. Now you have the stark awareness that you’re doing things differently, that you’re making real changes. This should make you feel great.

The more you practice this two-step process, the easier it will come to you, until eventually the positive thoughts become more automatic than the negative ones you used to have. When that happens, all that nervous energy starts to feed a healthy obsessive thought cycle — one that builds confidence and motivation to go for your goals.

Biography

Chloe Carmichael, Ph.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist, best known to audiences as Dr. Chloe, and author of “Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of Your Anxiety” (St. Martin’s Essentials, 2021). She heads a successful private practice in New York City that focuses primarily on relationship issues, stress to help high achievers. Carmichael is on the Advisory Board for Women’s Health Magazine and writes an expert blog for Psychology Today. She is a member in good standing of the American Psychological Association and the National Register of Health Psychologists, an elite membership for psychologists with the highest standards of education and board scores. As an expert in anxiety, Carmichael has taught stress management techniques at Fortune 500 companies as well as in her own private practice. While a doctoral student, Carmichael presented a poster at the Anxiety Disorder Association of America, and continues to be a thought leader in anxiety treatment today. She launched an online anxiety treatment program, Anxiety Tools, which has users throughout the United States and around the world including Japan, Dubai, U.A.E., Korea, France and Russia. As a certified yoga instructor, Carmichael is truly an expert in both the science and meditation side to anxiety treatment. Her holistic approach integrates a special blend of techniques that have been shown to help people overcome anxiety. Carmichael holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Long Island University and graduated Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude, with a bachelor’s degree and departmental honors in psychology from Columbia University in New York. She completed her clinical training at Lenox Hill Hospital and Kings County Hospital. Carmichael has taught undergraduate courses at Long Island University and the City University of New York; and served as the psychologist for The New York School of Podiatric Medicine.

 

Rob Kenner book illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Rob Kenner × Nipsey Hussle

Rob Kenner is one of the most prolific and influential voices in hip hop publishing and a founding editor of Vibe magazine. 

After meeting Nipsey Hussle in the offices of Vibe, Kenner spent the next ten years tracking the life and career of the hip hop mogul, artist, and activist. THE MARATHON DON’T STOP: The Life and Times of Nipsey Hussle by Rob Kenner (Atria Books; Hardcover; March 23, 2021; $27.00; ISBN: 9781982140298) ​is the first in-depth biography of Nipsey Hussle, whose transformative legacy inspired a generation with his motivational lyrics and visionary business savvy—before he was tragically shot down two years ago, on March 31, 2019 in the very neighborhood he was dedicated to building up.

Combining on-the-ground reporting and candid interviews with Hussle’s friends, family, and peers, THE MARATHON DON’T STOP traces the life and work of an extraordinary artist, placing him in historical context and unpacking his complex legacy.

Some details of Hussle’s life that Kenner can discuss in an interview include:

  • Ermias Asghedom, before he was Nipsey Hussle, was a brilliant, soft-spoken, and underestimated young man who loved hip hop with a passion and was determined to build his own successful music label and clothing business—as well as other businesses that would employ many members of his community.
  • His life in the Crenshaw District starting in 1985, placing Hussle in historical context within the evolution of Hip Hop, Los Angeles, and America.
  • Hussle’s genius as a teenager who built his own computers and went on to push the envelope of technology in growing his businesses as well as innovating new revenue models for independent musicians that have since been adopted by the mainstream music industry
  • Hussle’s life-changing trip to Africa to visit his father’s family in Eritrea, as well as his little-known first meeting with Afeni Shakur, long before he called himself the ‘Tupac of My Generation’ or even took the rap name Nipsey Hussle.
  • Hussle’s impact as an activist, and his efforts to re-align L.A. gang culture with the mission of organizations like the Black Panthers…AND MORE.

Rob Kenner is one of the most prolific and influential voices in hip-hop publishing. A founding editor of Vibe, Kenner joined the start-up team of Quincy Jones’ groundbreaking hip hop monthly in 1992. During a nineteen-year run at Vibe he edited and wrote cover and feature stories on iconic cultural figures ranging from Tupac Shakur to Barack Obama as well as writing the acclaimed column Boomshots. Kenner’s writing has appeared in ComplexGeniusMass AppealPigeons & PlanesEgo TripPoetry magazine, The New York Times, and Billboard. He’s also produced and directed documentary shorts on the likes of De La Soul, Nas, and Post Malone. As an editor at Vibe Books, Kenner worked on the New York Times bestseller Tupac Shakur and contributed to The Vibe History of Hip Hop. He went on to co-author VX: 10 Years of Vibe Photography and produced the book Unbelievable, a biography of The Notorious B.I.G. by Cheo Hodari Coker Jr., which was optioned for the motion picture Notorious.

NOLA Has Wiiings illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

NOLA Has Wiiings

Red Bull has teamed up with the New Orleans Pelicans and renowned visual artist Brandan “Bmike” Odums for NOLA Has Wiiings, a project dedicated to replacing backboards at basketball courts throughout New Orleans.

Bmike selected eight local creatives to transform old local backboards into works of art, which will be on display starting this month at the New Orleans Pelicans’ Smoothie King Center and online at RedBull.com.

New Orleans locals can vote for their favorite backboard starting today via the Pelicans Mobile App or website. The artist with the most votes will have the opportunity to conceptualize and design a full art court that serves the New Orleans community. 

Bmike’s custom backboard, for exhibit only, will be on display at Studio BE for the duration of the project.

NOLA Has Wiiings brings artists from around the city together to celebrate, brighten and educate communities through colorful displays of art that showcase NOLA’s unrivaled ability to rebound. 

NOLA Has Wiiings Artists

  • Ceaux, a New Orleans-born multidisciplinary artist, has created a backboard inspired by Harrell Park – located on the “Pigeon Town” side of Carrollton – and the color and playfulness that’s felt at playgrounds. 
  • Ayo Scott, painter and son of nationally recognized artist John T. Scott, has created “Big Ol’ Lil Big Chief” in collaboration with Big Chief Terrence “T” Williams of the Black Hawk Hunters, which is inspired by the resilient spirit of the people of New Orleans. 
  • Kara Crowley – Visual Artist, an artist who embraces black culture and positive representation in her own artistic interpretations, has created a backboard which showcases multiple hands expressing the message of unity. 
  • Jessica Strahan, a self-taught painter and muralist native to and based in New Orleans, has created a backboard inspired by dance and its ability to take people through vibrant moments in time. 
  • Marc Verrett / MarcFreshArt, a Baton Rouge based muralist, has created a backboard that illustrates a positive rise to overcome obstacles through imagery of a skull paired with colorful butterfly wings to represent the eternal drive to fly above. 
  • Jade Meyers/THEARTISTJADE, Art director and founder of the art-based company, “J A D E 1 9 9 1,” has created a piece inspired by liberation, growing up in New Orleans, power, nature, Black culture and sports culture. 
  • Bryan Brown, an artist whose work focuses on New Orleans culture, random but beautiful moments, and philosophy, has created “The Big Brain,” a representation of getting mentally healthy to unlock one’s true full potential. 
  • 1985 Poet; Artist: Monique Lorden, an artist and author and co-illustrator of “I Wish for Freedom,” a poetic picture book, was inspired by her memories of hooping at the park to create “Hoops Dreams and Poetry,” a visual story of childhood hope and community.
VIDAS book illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

VIDAS: Deep in Mexico and Spain

ADVENTURE AWAITS IN THIS NEW COMING-OF-AGE TRAVEL MEMOIR 

“VIDAS: Deep in Mexico and Spain”

A Tribute to The Glorious Diversity of Our Worlds

Shortly after the American ministers of hate started demonizing the people of Mexico, New York Times Best-Selling Author Edward Stanton began writing about his own wide experience living in that country, confounding the bigots and their bogeys, showing the real women, men, and children he knew there. When the coronavirus struck Spain last year, he decided to include that country as a homage to it and its people, whom he also knew and loved. 

This is how VIDAS: Deep in Mexico and Spain was born.

A wayward descendant of Mexico’s national hero, a femme fatale who recites poems in cantinas, a Tunisian prostitute in Barcelona, a Spanish psychiatrist who fights brave bulls, the wise owner of the world’s oldest restaurant. They are just a handful of the characters portrayed in VIDAS: Deep in Mexico and Spain, the first memoir to capture Mexico and Spain from the perspective of an American and the knowledge of an insider.

VIDAS explores subjects as diverse as the art of blasphemy, the cult of the Virgin Mary, superstition and witchcraft, the bordellos of Mexico, Spain’s paradise of drink and food, the bullfight, and the running of bulls in Pamplona, the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela. Every chapter of this vibrant travel memoir depicts a different person or place, which combined create a cross-section of the most populous Spanish-speaking countries in the New and Old World. VIDAS is a passage from childhood to adolescence and maturity, a tribute to nature and the open road, an exaltation of love, food, and wine, a journey from the tender, mortal flesh to the luminous world of the spirit.

-RELEASE DATE: March 1st, 2021
-PUBLISHING COMPANY: Waterside Publications
-ISBN-13: 978-1-949003-47-5 (print)
-ISBN-13: 978-1-949003-48-2 (eBook)
-GENRE: Nonfiction, travel, memoir, culture, diversity
-PRICE: $17.95 (print) $9.95 (eBook)
-PURCHASING INFO: VIDAS is available for purchase on Amazon here.

Why You Need This Book

Filled with photographs, this engaging and unique memoir provides a sensory travel experience many of us are craving today. VIDAS: Deep in Mexico and Spain offers the opportunity to learn about faraway lands and striking events while never leaving home. This timely “armchair travel” memoir is for anyone searching for an escape during our troubled time.

“Lyrical…Iconic…Elegant…” –KIRKUS REVIEWS

“A love letter to the Mexican and Spanish peoples, a pure affirmation of life in countries with radical cultures of death.” –ANA MERINO, WINNER 2020 PREMIO NADAL

About the Author, Edward Stanton:

Born in Colorado and raised in California, Edward Stanton has lived in Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, and Spain. He’s the author of twelve books, some of them translated and published in Spanish, Arabic, and Chinese. Road of Stars to Santiago, the story of his 500-mile walk on the ancient pilgrimage route to Compostela, was called one of the best books on the subject by the New York Times; Stanton’s environmental novel Wide as the Wind, the first to treat the tragic history of Easter Island, won the Next Generation Indie Book Award for Young Adult Fiction and three other international prizes. 

ReverbNation winner Isabelle Dubroy image by Isabelle Dubroy for use by 360 Magazine

ReverbNation Winner – Isabelle Dubroy

Isabelle Dubroy is a 14 year-old singer/songwriter, actress, model, dancer, author and philanthropist from Greenville, North Carolina.

She began singing at the age of four, and by six, Isabelle wrote her first song, “Coconut Mama.” A YouTube channel was created for Isabelle at age seven so that she could share her music. Isabelle even stared in a web series, “Microchip Jones,” in which she wrote and performed all the featured songs.

Between filming a series, releasing music videos and hosting her own talk show, Isabelle found time to write a children’s book titled, “Stuffy The Lucky Puppy,” with special thanks to her second grade teacher, Ms. Shiva Salehpour. Isabelle has proven to be a multi-faceted talent at a very young age and her craft is continuing to evolve.

Isabelle has dedicated her life to being an inspiration for the younger generation and hopes to help stop bullying. She even started a foundation called Isabelle’s Heart Foundation where she has donates supplies to homeless shelters, hosts her own food drives and gives back to less fortunate children and families in her community. Isabelle’s passion to help others has no boundaries.

Digital Divide illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Digitally Disconnected

DIGITALLY DISCONNECTED

13 TIPS FOR HELPING BRIDGE THE DIGITAL DIVIDE FOR CHILDREN DURING COVID-19

While social, racial, and economic disparities have always existed within the educational system, the COVID-19 pandemic is exasperating these inequities and widening gaps between students at a drastic rate. For families who can’t afford home computers, laptops, or high-speed internet access, remote learning is nearly impossible, and for students who already found themselves struggling before the pandemic, the prospect of more than a year of lost classroom time is a devastating blow. However, there are steps parents can take to shrink this digital divide, and there are resources available via schools, non-profits, and government initiatives that can help children access the technological tools they need to succeed. Indeed, Dr. Pamela Hurst-Della Pietra, President and Founder of Children and Screens, notes that “the inclusion of 17.2 billion dollars for closing the ‘homework gap’ in the recently passed American Rescue Plan is a watershed moment for digital equity.”   
 
Several of the leading figures in the fields of public health, education, psychology, and parenting have weighed in with their suggestions on the best ways to combat the digital divide, and many will participate in an interdisciplinary conversation and Q&A hosted by Children and Screens: Institute of Digital Media and Child Development on Wednesday, March 24, at 12pm ET via Zoom. Moderated by the Director of Internet and Technology Research at the Pew Research Center Lee Rainie, the panel will engage in an in-depth discussion about the digital divide and actionable steps we can all take to bridge the gap. RSVP here.
 
1. DON’T WAIT, ADVOCATE 

While schools across the country are doing everything they can to make sure that children have access to the technology and connectivity they need for remote learning, the unfortunate reality is that many families still lack adequate resources. If your family is among them, says author and MIT Assistant Professor of Digital Media Justin Reich, know that you’re not alone and that there are steps you can take to advocate for what your children need. “Start with your school staff,” Reich recommends. “They’re often overwhelmed during this challenging time but be polite and persistent. If you run into a dead-end with your school system, consider reaching out to school libraries and youth organizations like The Boys and Girls Club or the YMCA to see what kind of support they might be able to offer.”
 
2. SCALE DOWN 

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro Professor Dr. Wayne Journell agrees, pointing out that sometimes, despite their best efforts, teachers and administrators may not always know which students are struggling with connectivity issues. “Let teachers know if you have slow internet at home,” says Journell. “Sometimes detailed graphics and animations that look cute but have little relevance to the actual lessons being delivered can cause problems for students with unreliable internet. If teachers are aware, then they can scale down the ‘frilly’ stuff and still get the important content across.”
 
3. STAND UP FOR YOURSELF  

While it’s important for parents to speak up on behalf of their children, RAND Senior Policy Researcher Julia Kaufman, Ph.D., highlights the importance of encouraging children to express their needs, as well. “If your child does not have access to technology at home and is falling behind, make sure your child’s teacher knows the obstacles they’re facing and ask what accommodations will make it easier for your child to do assignments offline,” says Rand. “At the same time, help your child feel comfortable expressing any technology concerns or confusion to their teachers, including cases where they have the technology but cannot use it well.”
 
4. CHECK YOUR ASSUMPTIONS 

One critical step that educators and policymakers can take in addressing the digital divide is to check their assumptions. They cannot – and should not – assume that students do or do not have access based solely on demographics such as family income level. “In addition, they cannot assume that providing access alone creates equity,” adds Dr. Beth Holland, a Partner at The Learning Accelerator (TLA) and Digital Equity Advisor to the Consortium of School Networking (CoSN). “This is a complex and nuanced challenge that needs both a technical and a human solution to ensure that students not only have access to sufficient high-speed internet and devices but also accessible systems and structures to support their learning.”

5. SURVEY AND MODIFY  

For teachers who are on the ground and in the classroom, checking your assumptions can be as simple as asking a few basic questions at the start of the term. “Survey students to determine the percentage of your population that doesn’t have home Internet access,” recommends former AAP President Dr. Colleen A. Kraft, MD, MBA, FAAP. “Once you know the divide, you can address it,” adding, “When planning 1:1 projects and choosing devices, for example, you can consider a device’s capacity for offline use. For those without Wi-Fi, a public library in the child’s neighborhood can also be an excellent resource.”

6. VOTE FOR CHANGE 

That parents and teachers need to worry about the digital divide at all is a failure on the part of our elected leaders, says Bates College Associate Professor of Education Mara Casey Tieken. “Contact your elected officials—local, state, and federal—and complain,” she suggests. “Write letters, call their offices, attend their legislative sessions, and make your voice heard. Join with other families whose children are impacted by this divide to amplify your message and use your vote to support lawmakers who understand the impacts of this divide, have a clear plan to address it and are willing to take action.”
 
7. MAKE BROADBAND A UTILITY  

Reich agrees, reminding those families who already have their needs met that they share in the responsibility to advocate for the less fortunate. “It’s our job as citizens to demand that we as a society give families and children the tools and resources that they need for remote learning now and in the future,” says Reich. “We need to advocate for a society where broadband is treated as a utility rather than a luxury good, and young people enrolled in schools and educational programs have access to computers for learning.”

8. CONCRETE INITIATIVES  

Angela Siefer, Executive Director of the National Digital Inclusion Alliance, advocates four concrete initiatives. “Establish a permanent broadband benefit, increase access to affordable computers, digital literacy and technical support, improve broadband mapping (including residential cost data), and support local and state digital inclusion planning.” By implementing these changes, Siefer says, policymakers can start to mitigate the digital divide. 

9. USE TECH FOR GOOD 

There are many reasons to consider equitable solutions along a “digital continuum” rather than the “digital divide;” a binary description leaves less room for nuanced and customized interventions. It may be imperative to fortify existing institutions, implement new governance structures and promulgate policies to confront disparities regarding working families. Antwuan Wallace, Managing Director at National Innovation Service, suggests that legislators consider a Safety and Thriving framework to increase family efficacy to support children with protective factors against the “homework gap” by utilizing technology to train critical skills for executive functioning, including planning, working memory, and prioritization. 
 
10. LEVEL THE FIELD 

Emma Garcia of the Economic Policy Institute emphasizes that guided technology education will be of great value after the pandemic. She says, “it will need be instituted as part of a very broad agenda that uses well-designed diagnostic tests to know where children are and what they need (in terms of knowledge, socioemotional development, and wellbeing), ensures the right number of highly credentialed professionals to teach and support students, and offers an array of targeted investments that will address the adverse impacts of COVID-19 on children’s learning and development, especially for those who were most hit by the pandemic.”
 
11. APPLY FOR LIFELINE 

Research also shows that the digital divide disproportionately affects Latino, Black, and Native American students, with the expensive price of internet access serving as one of the main obstacles to families in these communities. “Eligible parents can apply for the Lifeline Program, which is a federal program that can reduce their monthly phone and internet cost,” suggests Greenlining Institute fellow Gissela Moya. “Parents can also ask their child’s school to support them by providing hotspots and computer devices to ensure their child has the tools they need to succeed.”
 
12. GET INVOLVED 

Learning remotely can be difficult for kids, even if they have access to all the technological tools they need. Research shows that parental encouragement is also an important aspect of learning for children, notes London School of Economics professor and author Sonia Livingstone. “Perhaps sit with them, and gently explain what’s required or work it out together.” She adds that working together is a great way that parents with fewer economic or digital resources can support their children. “And if you don’t know much about computers, your child can probably teach you something too!”
 
13. NO ONE SIZE FITS ALL 

When it comes to encouraging your children, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. “Reflect on the more nuanced ways your children learn and leverage accessible resources (digital and non-digital) to inspire their continued curiosity,” says University of Redlands Assistant Professor Nicol Howard. Leaning into your child’s strengths and interests will help them make the most of this challenging time.
 
While the move to remote learning may seem like an insurmountable obstacle for families that can’t afford reliable internet or dedicated devices for their kids, there are a variety of ways that parents can help connect their children with the tools they need. For those privileged enough to already have access to the necessary physical resources, it’s important to remember that emotional support is also an essential piece of the puzzle when it comes to children’s educational success, especially during days as challenging as these. Lastly, it falls on all of us to use our time, energy, and voices to work towards a more just world where the educational playing field is level and all children have the same opportunity to thrive and succeed, regardless of their social, racial, or financial background.
 
About Children and Screens
Since its inception in 2013, Children and Screens: Institute of Digital Media and Child Development, has become one of the nation’s leading non-profit organizations dedicated to advancing and supporting interdisciplinary scientific research, enhancing human capital in the field, informing and educating the public, and advocating for sound public policy for child health and wellness. For more information, visit Children and Screens website or contact by email here.
 
The views and opinions that are expressed in this article belong to the experts to whom they are attributed, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Children and Screens: Institute of Digital Media and Child Development, or its staff.