When fiction is more.

Sometimes inspiration is nowhere to be found and the idea of a challenge is just not appealing.

You might still want to think, but maybe not feel…not care…

Meet Bret Easton Ellis

Easily my favorite author, he deals with a far too familiar voice in the depths of depravity, insolence, excess, addiction and downright immorality. How he writes it so well makes one wonder.

Part of the beauty in his work is the ability to show us how simply rotten life can be, how it goes on beyond each of his stories he presents and is ultimately the main character in every book.

The world is not always a pretty place, and he doesn’t shy away from that idea. However, it isn’t always ugly, but to truly understand and appreciate this he feels that you must acknowledge the other side.

Like everyday life, if you actually sit back and survey the situation the common threads he plays with of what is “good” and what decides ”worth” you can find humanity and positivity behind even his most repulsive characters.

His most infamous creation, Patrick Bateman, the sociopathic, misogynistic, serial killer in American Psycho, even displays a semblance of humanity when he spares the life of his secretary, Jean.

To understand Jean and the relationship she shares with Bateman that differs from just about everyone else she      meets is to be able to recognize purity and positivity.

Jean is a glimmering hope that Easton Ellis writes so well. There is good in the world. She is the least shallow person the Bateman character has ever encountered, hope exists.

When you’re done with his work you’re not really done. Typically, like any good piece of work, you’re left changed in some way or another.

Introspection occurs and you find yourself either worse off than you were going in, or maybe you find many more redeeming things about yourself that you just hadn’t looked towards before.

…or maybe, to you, his work is just literature…

Easton Ellis’s works include: Less Than Zero, the Rules of Attraction, American Psycho, the Informers, Glamorama, Lunar Park and Imperial Bedrooms.

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The Race to Fitness

At one time in my life I was actually a pretty fit runner. Getting up off the couch and hitting the trails for a 10-miler wasn’t out of the ordinary and I actually looked forward to as an integral part of my day.

Of course, things changed drastically as I got older and there’s a definite lack of motivation to find the time to get out and push myself.

Inspiration, as with everything, is a strong ally and like just about anything I can and have easily found a valuable source to be in reading.

Once a Runner is a specific book that has been a great motivator for me. 

Considered by many runners to be one of the greatest books about the love of the sport; it is actually a work of fiction that follows a runner in his attempt to break the vaunted 4-minute mile.

John L. Parker writes with such textual clarity that resonates as strongly for everyone from your most hardcore athlete down to the casual jogger. There are moments, even now after having read it a number of times, which I get chills and my heart starts racing as I work my way through a chapter.

It’s a staple that I can always look back to along with other titles like Running With the Buffaloes, the Perfect Mile, and Pre.

Sometimes the old standby can get stale, however, and of course with the rise of social media there are new outlets to find inspiration and Twitter has become a valuable source of mine.

I follow a number of fitness motivated handles such as @menshealthmag, @runnersworld and @active.

All three keep a pretty active stream of tweets daily, presenting their followers with articles, advice and sometimes products to keep them motivated to maintain a reasonably healthy lifestyle.

They encourage followers to interact, promote dialogue and present a community atmosphere in which you can always find comfort among others who value fitness and can always empathize as well as push you to keep working.

Everyone can use that little push sometimes and there are plenty of place to get it. When we find something that motivates us it can become valuable and something we cherish and it’s comforting to know that there is always more information out there being added.

Where do you find your inspiration?

The Elusiveness of Inspiration

When first trying to decide what I wanted to write a blog about I found myself having a hard time thinking of something I felt passionate enough that I would want to share. So, I started reading things, other blogs specifically to help find some motivation. That’s when the idea hit me, I love to read.

I find the greatest excitement in reading to be the complete lack of boundaries when exploring.

There truly is something for everyone, or everything for someone. From your standard words on paper to the more dynamic graphic novel form ideas are approached in every way. You are sharing in an infinite universe of ideas.

At the least reading affords me a fulfilling use of my time, at best it inspires. I may never have gone to Spain to experience the excitement of the Festival of San Fermín had I never read Ernest Hemingway’s classic, The Sun Also Rises. Being exposed to the latter half of that story as well as other Hemingway works gave me the vision that led to an amazing experience shared with friends as we travelled around Spain, culminating with taking part in the running of the bulls.

Inspiration is a huge part of what I find so appealing in being such an avid reader. My mind is always grasping at different concepts and the nearly unlimited source of ideas that reading provides keeps me motivated and engaged.

Hopefully the inspiration is contagious.

For fun, here’s what kind of crazy, yet absolutely awesome things an idea planted from a book can make you do…