Welcome

Welcome. The journey may be rocky, but we’re all in this wagon together. This is a vehicle for posting chapters of my book as they get written and edited. If you’re here to read, the chapters are posted as pages under the parent page “A War Journal” – the working title of my book. Thanks for making the effort, and I hope you find it interesting, perhaps even edifying.

If you’re willing to make comments, I’d appreciate it. You need to register and login to be able to leave comments, but it’s simple. Just clik on ‘register’ – bottom of the right-hand column… then follow instructions. If you do make comments, please be honest – and try to be kind.

I will try to post here notes on the progress of the writing and any changes I’ve made to old chapters or to the order of chapters… perhaps a few introductory remarks will be helpful. I haven’t written an introduction, that comes last, but this may help with reading it as is:

-This is an experimental work, and so asks some work and patience of the reader.

-It is written as creative non-fiction, so it’s true, in the sense that all these things actually happened, just maybe not exactly as I’ve written it, due to the vagaries of memory or the needs of the story.

-It is a multi-genre work, which means it may include straight narrative, stories, journal entries, re-created journal entries, poems, songs, graphics, news accounts, quotations from other works, pieces in other voices both real and imaginary. All these various genre pieces are intended to work together to tell the story and paint the picture of my experience; some of them stand alone as individual pieces as well.

-This work employs an exploded timeline – thus each entry is dated to help you keep the sequence clear. There are two main streams, however: the first is the time prior to and during my service in the Air Force, and the second is a trip that I took about a year after I got out of the Air Force. The story more or less alternates between these two streams, with some exceptions…

Good luck! And thanks again for your willingness to subject yourself to this journey.

Oh. About the site title, well…. shunyata is a Sanskrit word that means something like this: everything in existence, including you and me, is ’empty’ of an inherent self-nature because everything is so intricately and inextricably linked with everything else that there is really only one thing and this is it, you are it, God is it, I am it, your toenail clippings on the floor under the bed from last week is it, and so absolutely anything and everything that exists or happens or appears was, is, and will always be infinitely and completely wonderful, exquisite and delightful. So even a complete idiot like me can write a book and post it on website and have wonderful intelligent people like you come and read it! So I hope that this weblog and my book will help everyone to see how perfectly wonderful everything is, even though it is all completely absurd.

Thank you! Love to all! Gassho!

=John

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