Thursday, August 17, 2017

Uvi Poznansky's Debut Novel of The David Chronicles


I hear the jingle of keys. To my ears, it is such a lovely sound... “Come,” I cry out, “crack it, crack open the door! Step into my chamber... If my memory isn’t playing its tricks on me, you must be the first to visit me here for quite a long while…” 
No one answers. “Come in,” I plead, hoping that no one could catch the shaky tone of my voice. My fever is gone. In its place, now come severe bouts of shivering. I try, as best I can, to control myself. I slow down the chattering of my teeth as I call out, “Of one thing I’m sure: Reading what I’ve been working on—which, for lack of a better term I would call a memoir—you would think me a madman.”
Suddenly I suspect there is more than one of them out there. Putting my ear to the iron door I hear them shuffling their feet on the other side, without uttering a single word. 
To make them speak to me I let myself admit, out loud, “You’re right. Perhaps I am.” 
There, through the keyhole—I can somehow sense it—an eye is observing me. There are limits to power. When afflicted by an unexplained illness, even a king can be placed in quarantine. The words freeze on my lips, Heal me, Lord, for my bones are in agony… My soul is in deep anguish. How long, Lord, how long? 
I am tempted to kick the door, to startle them—but the isolation in this place is such that it forces me to talk, because I need to hear a human voice, and I need someone to listen. So I call out, “Perhaps it’s me who’s confused,” but I refuse to believe it. The door creaks on its hinges, only to reveal two shadows stirring out there, one blurring the other. They let silence reign over me, so in spite of myself I start wringing one hand with the other. I hang my head over these knuckles, over these pale, veined wrists which I hardly recognize as mine, finding myself overcome by a new enemy, one I never expected: the chill of old age. 
In my youth I became famous for being a fine, eloquent speaker, with a particular talent for eulogies—but now it seems that my listeners have left me. Why write another psalm? Who would read it? Who would take it to heart? 
Being abandoned is not something I take lightly. I want to tell the crowds to come back to me, and not only to take a listen—but to adore me, too! Glancing at the shadows, “Come in,” I beseech. “Let me see, let me touch you. Talk to me… And let me tell you my story.” 
Where will I start it? From my childhood, from the first time I came to the court. The moments of my life are vivid in my mind, too vivid to be dismissed as merely the wishful thinking of a locked up old man. 
My fingers still carry the sense, the cold touch of Saul’s crown, when at last I laid my hands on it. And I know, in a way that no one else can begin to imagine, how heavy it is. This was the thing—or so I thought, back then—the very thing that would make me what I wanted: larger than life. Larger than life? I start laughing, at myself most of all, only to be startled by echoes. I listen in alarm to the way they peel, pealing away from the walls. “Listen,” I say, “whoever you are: I am a poet, a bard. 
For me, reality is a hard thing to grasp, at least your kind of reality: one that’s confined, as if by a straightjacket, to the task at hand. Trapped in such a life I would feel... Oh, what’s the right word? Condemned.”
...This time I can see, with great clarity, that power does not come from the crown. At long last I have no urge anymore to keep my grasp on it. Now I know, power comes from within, from something else entirely: my skill with words. I wish I would have recognized it a long time ago, on my first visit to the royal court. Perhaps then I would have become a poet. Not a king...
~~~


The author of The David Chronicles was captured by the stories of David, which she read in its original language... Now she has  created a three-book literary masterpiece so that readers can learn of the individual--David.

The Debut begins with a Prologue in which David has reached old age, having lived his life, yet not totally ready to give his reign over to his heir. The books are written as if David was writing his memoir--the story of his life as he wants to have his family and others know him. Most of all we see David as the man--the human being created by God. The human, like all of us, who deeply loved His God, but who also faced the issues that each of us do... David has a number of significant stories in his life. Book 1 covers his major event when he took on Goliath...


If you have not already done so, you may want to refer to my review of the complementary book, Inspired by Art: Fighting Goliath spotlighting various artists who have given the world their vision of this story. While many may have knowledge of the story between Goliath and David, I was intrigued by the book enough to want to read the contemporary tale envisioned by Poznansky. Also check out Fall of a Giant which continues the review of art work related to the amazing David and Goliant saga... 

We begin the story as David leaves his home to audition for King Saul as a musician, a poet, intent on bringing the King comfort...



Although many who listened were entranced by David's singing and poetry, the King was not and asked who had invited David there, only to be reminded that he, himself, had thought some music might help him feel better.

Finally with the King's permission, David stayed at court and we learn much about what was happening in the life of King Saul, as seen by David... Watching that time, but reading it in today's words and language, is intriguing--we don't know exactly how to respond to a story that does not follow what we already know...but rather fills in the setting, the background and the people there at that time. Could life then be just as complicated and full of emotional angst as it is now?

And what we find is a David who is just as confused as we are in trying to look toward the future, what it holds, what path he should take. He sees the grandeur of the King's castle, the riches within, the power he holds over the people and the country. And David feels the first taste of fame... grandeur... and glory... Does he dare to consider any of these things in his future? Could David become a leader of men? Could anybody ever look to him as their leader--perhaps even their King?

And in thinking more and more, he accidentally speaks openly and Saul, thinking to chide him, asks, why don't you kill a giant?

And the rest of the story is...as they say...history...

And yet it is not...

Poznansky, in taking God's constant presence out of the picture, reveals a man finding his own way, feeling the emotions we feel as well. He is not portrayed as a Godly man, rather he is pictured as we are, striving to live our lives, seeking God's guidance, but not necessarily knowing that his choices are, perhaps, part of God's plan (even though his future had been prophesied). The result is a refreshing, complementary look into the lives of those living in early times who were, basically, much like each of us who know God and try to follow His words...

I will add that much was added to the book about which we may not have known...For instance, David bargained with King Saul for his daughter's hand if he succeeded in killing the giant... I did not see any of what was presented as contradictory of what you may have learned from the Bible, but rather a literary fictional story that helps readers to ponder, to consider how common men--a boy from a farm in this case--might some day come to be known as a man favored by God...  Although I personally didn't enjoy seeing the curse words, I am aware that today's world uses them as part of the culture of today... Therefore, I did not see them as detracting from the value of the story, rather that I was offended personally because of my own background. In that light, I must say that Poznansky has presented an outstanding exploration into the historic life of David, who became King...

Highly recommended,

GABixlerReviews

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Discussion with Uvi Poznansky - Come on Over and Say Hi!


Hi Again Uvi! I am certainly enjoying talking with you during this 3-day spotlight, which will conclude with my reviews of your trilogy tomorrow... 


The David Chronicles! What got you interested...did you lay out your entire series or did you start with one book and move forward...







I have been enthralled with David since childhood, and by the time I started writing the trilogy it seemed that he was living and breathing inside my head. There was no need to lay the story out, because the events are already recounted in scripture. What I focused on is bringing it to life from the king’s point of view, rather than from the point of view of an objective narrator. For example,  when Tamar, the king’s daughter, is raped by Amnon, or when Absalom, the king’s son, finds his death, how can David describe these events, since he was not there to witness it? Well, he has an anxious premonition that something is about to go awry, and when the news is conveyed to him he learns all he can about what happened. Being a writer of great talent, he records these events for himself, fighting through his grief. 

For your books, approximately what percentage would be considered history versus the fiction added to bring the story to life? Did you use a specific Bible or other religious book to begin? Specifically, how did you gain the amount of knowledge necessary to translate scripture references to a complete series of books?

Studying the biblical story in the original language, rather than in translation, made the story very direct for me. In Hebrew there are no ‘versions’ of the bible--there is the one and only text where every sentence, every word is the same across all illuminated manuscripts and printed books. Translations are interpretations, but growing up in Israel, what I studied is the original.


Here is how David describes Amnon’s chamber.

Upon entering his house I find myself confused—even before taking a look at him—to see that things in it have been staged in a new manner. Perhaps it just seems that way, because of the remarkably dim air, which is thick with some medicinal vapor. It blots the outlines of the furniture, and casts gloom over the entire space. The heavy cabinet that used to stand opposite the bedroom door is now barricading it, so I have to find my way around that obstacle. 
Usually at this hour the windows are wide open, so sunlight may pour in, to showcase the bed in all its decadence. It is an expensive, heavy piece, decorated according to his taste, with fancy inlays of metal, mother-of-pearl, and ivory, contrasting each other in hue and shine. But now, the thing is drenched in shadows. 
In the dark, you barely note the life-sized statue of a nude holding a fan, standing at this corner of the bed, and the matching statue at the other corner. Carved of Egyptian alabaster, both of these figures lean forward as if to stop you right there, and prevent you from slipping around them. I imagine that if not for being suspended in that motion, they would hiss something, some sordid secret in your ear.
The scarlet draperies have been pulled shut, allowing only a single ray of sun to wander in, and reach for the pillow. There lies Amnon, having dropped his hand limply, and perhaps a bit theatrically, over the edge of the mattress. 
As if threatening to cross him off, the blade of light rests there, barely stirring across his cheek, which brings back the old grief. Tears well in my eyes, stinging me. I blink them off and try to find Amnon’s eyes, but they are obscure to me, completely hidden in the deepest shadow. Perhaps I have yet to adjust to the dark.
“I’m so hot,” he sighs, his voice husky. “Oh, am I in fever!”

It is very clear as we read passages such as this, that you've spent much time in contemplation and imaging... 

Let's talk first about your Inspired by Art books...Did the concept for those books come before or after your novels? How did they play a part in relation to your novels? Tell us a little about your teaching activities related to the books...

My art collections are a product of the same fascination with the character, the same interest that sparked the novels. A few years back I embarked on collecting art not by artistic style or era, but rather by the story moment-by-moment, blow-by-blow of the story, as imagined by various artists. Rembrandt, Ivan Schwebel, James Tissot, Rubens, William Blake, Gustave DorĂ©, and Vallotton, to name but a few. These collections served as the basis for a research course which I taught in a university setting, guiding my students in the analysis of contrasts between viewpoints around the biblical story. 

Taking it a step further, as I reviewed these three books, one of the major things that struck me was the wide spectrum that was used by the various artists to illustrate a given scene; e.g., David killing Goliath. My question is when writing your books, were you persuaded by a specific artist that "this" was what looks like what happened? Or did you use just scripture? or a broader research base? David for instance, was portrayed as a young man in some paintings but others showed him much older and muscular... What age and physical description did you decide to use in your first, opening book? Was it important to you to stay as close as possible to history or did you allow your creative imagination considerable latitude?

When you see how artists look at these events from different viewpoints, you realize there is no ‘absolute’ way to view it. The life of David is, in a way, a mystery, which invites us into a journey of exploration.

I am often inspired by the art when writing a specific scene. For example, the execution of Amnon, as orchestrated by his brother, Absalom, is imagined here by his father, David: 

This was no murder. There is no other name for it but execution.
I stare at the darkness of the palms of my hands and at once, images of that feast—for lack of a better term—light up in my mind. I hear every sound in that place, and take in every smell, as if I have witnessed the entire affair myself, as if I own the senses of the killer and of the victim at once, as if I am possessed by them, because they are, both of them, my own flesh and blood. 
I shudder to see so many daggers drawn out of metal holsters. Their harsh grating noise penetrates me. A gasp, a last gurgle of surprise escapes from Amnon’s throat, as many hands grip him, and twist his arms forcefully behind his back. 
The bleating of sheep is heard faintly in the background as blades rise, flashing in the air. Then they plunge upon his throat, clinking against each other, and the first of them slashes the vein. 
His bloodied corpse is thrown, like leftover meat, by the side of the bench where he has sat. Overhead, birds of prey start hovering. Flies are buzzing, buzzing all around, sensing the sweet taste of blood, which is spurting from his neck. 
His eyes turn. They go on turning in their sockets, nearly flipping over in an unnatural way, as if to see the man standing directly behind him. Absalom. There, there he is, striking a victorious pose: legs wide apart, arms crossed, giving him what he has wanted: a nod, a final nod of recognition.
Oh, my son, Absalom.

A powerful statement!

While I enjoyed both the first and second books, I was more familiar with the stories of Goliath and Bathsheba...But by the third book, David has been King for many years, has a large family, and has written many of his literary contributions...
For me, he seemed a man who had grown old enough to look back and concern himself with the past as opposed to what he was doing to rule at that time. In fact, he seemed a rather weak, disheartened man.  You've mentioned that the books are created from his words. And, in fact, I found the artwork created for this period a much more provocative presentation. How do you see from your research that King David had come to this point in his life?

Indeed, in The Edge of Revolt David has passed the prime of his life. He has gone from an age of action into an age of reflection, so in my mind I see him as the psalmist and poet more so than ever. There is great beauty in that, but in addition, great pain, because is finds himself unable to make decisions, especially when Amnon his son rapes Tamar his daughter, and when Absalom his second son executes Amnon. 

Still, I would not call David weak, but rather, profoundly torn between his love for his children, whom he adores, and the need to restrain and punish them when they commit crimes against each other and against him. Such a choice is daunting, so I fully understand how disheartened he becomes. How ironic is it that while his palace is being designed with the greatest of splendors, a destruction comes from within his family, threatening to undermine the foundations of the House of David.

In many paintings describing him at this age, a sense of darkness is depicted. For example, in this painting depicting him as a psalmist, wearing an elaborate head scarf and readying himself to play his musical instrument. But notice the head of Goliath at his feet. It is a trophy from years past, which must have been preserved to survive decades after the famous battle... It is at once a reminder of glory and of death. This painting gave me the idea to have David stare into the eye-holes of the mummified  head of Goliath:

Amnon winks again, which enrages me, in a flash, into dragging him by the ear, all the way to the opposite side of the court, to the central glass display, where the head of goliath, preserved by Egyptian experts, is encased.
Its eyebrows are bushier than I remember, and so is the serpentine hair twisting upon itself. It seems to be hissing, creeping towards us, pressing against the glass as if to burst it open, which makes me wonder if there is still a remnant of life inside this scalp. I have to remind myself that nearly three decades have passed since the day I killed him. 
Meanwhile Amnon cannot help but shudder, perhaps because of the darkness crawling out of those empty eye sockets, and even more than that, because he can see his own reflection right there, in between the huge jaws, over the sheet of glass that separates him from that thing, that memento of my earliest battle.
I let go of his ear, not before breathing into it, “Ever think of death?”

There was definitely a struggle that David did not want to give up his Kingdom, but that His sons and even his army were discontented with the good life they now had, with nothing to do. Given my personal thoughts on war and how it gets started, I found it unacceptable, the only word I can use, that David had become lackadaisical and sad that David was not doing more as their leader to establish other options for the citizens other than continuing in war... Noting that his own thoughts were more self-serving, am I correct in being disenchanted with the man he'd become?

I would beg to differ. When his son Absalom, whom he adores, tries to topple him from the throne, David does not stay in Jerusalem to mount a battle against his son. Instead, he escapes the city and goes into exile. And when Absalom’s army chases him down, David, who has grown to hate the violence of war, instructs his generals and soldiers not to hurt his son, to be gentle with the man who wants to kill him. 

Having been to so many wars in the past, I cannot help but imagine the soundless spread of wings, as birds of prey hover in the air, as they descend upon lifeless figures and peck at their wounds. I hear groans of pain even as I watch these young, fresh faces, many of whom are smiling at me, waving farewell. 
All of them hear me loud and clear when I bellow, “Halt! One more thing, before you go!”
Joav, Abishai and Ittai stop marching, and all the men behind them come to attention. The last thing they expect of me, as they head for a crucial battle, is a plea for restraint.
“Be gentle with the young man Absalom,” I tell them, “for my sake.”

He had ensured he had Bathsheba by getting her husband killed, had wives and his harem...yet it seemed that Bathsheba was the only female that stood by him at that time. What's more, when his son, who had quite a reputation for mishandling women, sought his sister, David, perhaps not willing to see the potential danger, sent her into his home and directly into a situation she could not handle... She was raped. and David did nothing. Is there any historical background that you can provide that would explain David's lack of action, even to comfort his daughter?

You know, most women described in the bible with a single sentence that immortalizes their beauty. Some of them are not even mentioned by name, because in those times they would be considered the property of their husband. Tamar presents the opposite case: her entire dialogue with her rapist has somehow been preserved for future generations, which is amazing not only by contrast to other women who were not given a voice but also because of the shameful circumstances. It got me thinking: How did it happen that the scribes agreed to include her conversation with Amnon is such a complete way? 

Having realized that Tamar has been raped, David tries to protect her by making sure word does not get around. 

Having failed to protect Tamar, I must shield her now in an entirely different way. No one should learn these sordid details of the assault. In public, the story should be denied, if at all possible. For certain, it should not make it into the official records of history, because that would be like violating my daughter all over again.

In The Edge of Revolt, I imagine David maturing into the opposite approach, that of giving a voice to the victim.

“Give her a voice,” says Bathsheba, in a tone that is intense, and full of pity for Tamar, and for all of us. “Let everyone hear how a woman does all she can, with such amazing courage, to resist a rape. Let her story be told!”
“That,” say I, “will take a change in the way things are.”

As often is the case, including today,  men, leaders, fail to act when a woman is raped. Yet, many speak out when such an outrage does occur. In this case, another son of David was angry that his sister had been abused by a brother and arranged his death. Still David did not act... Do you think that protecting family members who commit crimes can be just ignored in the hope of it all going away?

It appears that lack of action by King David led directly to the revolt that came. It also seemed that some loyal followers cared more for their King than did his own family... I admit, I failed to see the lesson that could be learned...Is there one?

This story is about coming full circle to believe something that you did not recognize at the beginning of the journey. His generation believed in glorifying the victorious at the cost of silencing the downtrodden. But listen to David’s thoughts as he comes to his last hours:

Below, somewhere in the women’s quarters, children are starting to awaken. I hear their voices: some cry, others call for their mothers. One of them, a young girl, runs out to the courtyard, then stops and turns her head back. 
I squint against the light, which allows me to recognize her: she is my grandchild, Absalom’s child.
Now she waves at me. Her laughter is so pure, so melodic. It is full of silvery notes, which reminds me of my own daughter, Tamar, and the way she used to laugh, before silence overtook her. 
I want to go down to the child and put my arms around her to keep her safe, now and in the future—but I know that it is not in my power. Even so I murmur to her, across the distance, “Let you never surrender to silence, because if you do, it would leave you with the rusty, poisonous taste of shame.” 
The child has opened the gate. Like me, she is watching the sunrise. I wonder what it means for her. Perhaps, hope.
One day my daughter, Tamar, will stop listening to the dictates of those who wished to hush her. She will no longer obey the words, ‘Shut up,’ which she must still be hearing in her mind, in the voice of Amnon, who raped her. Nor will she obey the words, “Be silent for now,” in the voice of Absalom, who sought to protect her. 
The real shame—now I know—is to consent to silence. A day will come when she will transform her suffering into meaning, into words.


Uvi, where do you see this series going? Is there more to come? What other projects are you working on? Big plans for the future?

For now, this series is complete. Rise to Power describes David as a young boy coming to the court of the king. A Peek at Bathsheba describes him in the prime of his life, when he succumbs to a moment of temptation that might cost him his entire legacy. And The Edge of Revolt describes the last phase of his life. Together with the six accompanying art books, with collections of art by the masters throughout the ages, this series is complete.

I am now writing the next volume in my family saga series, Still Life with Memories. This volume is titled Marriage before Death, and I dedicate it to the heroines that worked with French resistance forces against the Nazi war machine. It continues the love story between Lenny, a marine, and Natasha, a pianist, but this time it is becoming a full throttled thriller!

So, stay tuned...



Uvi Poznansky is a bestselling, award-winning author, poet and artist. “I paint with my pen,” she says, “and write with my paintbrush.” Her romance boxed set, A Touch of Passion, is the 2016 WINNER of The Romance Reviews Readers' Choice Awards.

Education and work:
Uvi earned her B. A. in Architecture and Town Planning from the Technion in Haifa, Israel and practiced with an innovative Architectural firm, taking a major part in the large-scale project, called Home for the Soldier.

Having moved to Troy, N.Y. with her husband and two children, Uvi received a Fellowship grant and a Teaching Assistantship from the Architecture department at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. There, she guided teams in a variety of design projects and earned her M.A. in Architecture. Then, taking a sharp turn in her education, she earned her M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Michigan.

She worked first as an architect, and later as a software engineer, software team leader, software manager and a software consultant (with an emphasis on user interface for medical instruments devices.) All the while, she wrote and painted constantly, and exhibited in Israel and California. In addition, she taught art appreciation classes. Her versatile body of work includes bronze and ceramic sculptures, oil and watercolor paintings, charcoal, pen and pencil drawings, and mixed media.

Books and Genres:

Her two series won great acclaim. Still Life with Memories is a family saga series with touches of romance. It includes Apart From Love, My Own Voice, The White Piano, The Music of Us, and Dancing with Air. The David Chronicles is a historical fiction series. It includes Rise to Power, A Peek at Bathsheba, and The Edge of Revolt.

Her poetry book, Home, is in tribute to her father. Her collection of dark tales, Twisted, and her Historical Fiction book, A Favorite Son, are both new age, biblically inspired books. In addition, Uvi wrote and illustrated two children books, Jess and Wiggle and Now I Am Paper. For each one of these books, she created an animation video (find them on YouTube and on her Goodreads page.)

Discussion with Uvi Poznansky - Come Join Us; You are Welcome!




Uvi! Always busy, I see! Thanks so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to visit Book Readers Heaven...It's a delight for me and I am sure it will be for all readers... 

Oh, it’s my pleasure, Glenda! I am so grateful to you for opening the discussion about The David Chronicles. This epic story stirs up a lot of ideas.

Indeed! The entire set of books is extraordinary in the continuity, the additional exploration of related works by leading artists and the movement out of the original Biblical story into a broader literary fictional tale of the total life of David.

Uvi, your creative talent is superior...artistic, writing...how does your background bring those to you? heritage?, perhaps, by certain family members? or was it from your personal interests and work to reach the place where you now are?

My creative drive, in poetry, story telling, and art, started early in life. Before I knew how to hold a pen in my hand, I would tell stories that my father (a poet, writer and artist himself) would write down for me. He would also ask me to help him rhyme his lines, which introduced me to the music of words and the intricacies of writing.

That's a delightful memory of your father asking you to help rhyme--what a wonderful start to your life's work...

After going through your Gallery, I was wondering if most artists work in various mediums as you do...that is, sculpture, watercolor and painting?

I believe that creativity expresses itself in many ways in each individual, and all of us go through phases of trying out different outlets for our imagination. This is true of most artists. You will find that Picasso has changed styles more that any of us changed shoes... But sometimes we tend to repeat a ‘formula’ that succeeds commercially. This is exactly what I try to avoid, because to stop exploring different ways to express what’s in my mind and heart would end up in me boring myself.


Escape to Higher Grounds I

Seeing the diversity of your work, it is hard for me to imagine you ever becoming bored...Here again, your breadth of topics are wide...your styles different as opposed to a steady vision such as those who do nature watercolors. Do you consider each choice or are you inspired and then move immediately into your latest vision?

I think that my signature style emerges from my entire body of work, so I don’t worry about it at all, quite the opposite: I strive to stretch the envelope of what I create. In art, I use different mediums, which enriches my designs: I sculpt (in bronze, clay, and paper); I draw in charcoal, ink, and pencils; I paint in watercolor and oils; and I create animations. Similarly, in my literary work I write in different genres, which enriches my thinking: My novel Apart From Love is contemporary fiction; my book Home is poetry; my book Twisted is fantasy; and my book A Favorite Son is historical fiction and biblical fiction.


Defiance

Most of my involvement with your work has been related to the David Chronicles. But, could you share more about those parts of your work that first, have been most fulfilling for you, and, second, those that have been the most popular as judged by your followers...

What I enjoy, particularly when writing historical fiction, is the combination of right and left brain: learning about the era in great detail through research, and then immersing in it with all my senses.

I collect every detail about the time and the setting. But then, I choose where to take my departure from the reference material. In this series, I chose to let the character speak in modern language. This is a design decision, meant to bring the reader into the realization that this is a universal story, happening here and now, rather than an old fairy tale.

It is essential to anchor fiction in the real setting of the plot. You can do it in a myriad  of ways: visit the place, read about it, and look at art and photographs that depict it. 


For example, in my novel Rise to Power, David described the Valley of Elah, where he will soon face his enemy. I had visited this place when I was a child, and at the time it surprised me that the valley is so shallow and well, boring. I imagined that perhaps it used to have dramatically sloped walls, as befits the scene of an iconic battle. I told myself that perhaps over the generations dust has settled over it and covered the rocky slopes, hiding the drama. 

Before writing the scene, I also looked at a lot of paintings in the history of art, Then I set it all aside, and wrote the scene from imagination:

“There, with their backs to me, they are: three silhouettes, drawn sharply against the gray, gloomy landscape. The horsemen in the center is the one I am watching with keen interest. He is tall, formidable, and cloaked. A ray of morning light reaches hesitantly for his crown, sets it afire, and then pulls back.
Ahead of him, the valley opens like a fresh cut. Thin, muddy streams are washing over its rocks, oozing in and out of its cracks, and bleeding into its soil. Layers upon layers of moist, fleshy earth are pouring from one end to another, then halting on a slant, about to slip off. And from down below, somewhere under the heavy mist that hides the bottom of the valley from sight, stir some unexpected sounds. 
I wish I could ignore them. For a moment I am tempted to stick my fingers in my ears—but to do so I would have to let go of my lyre. Let go I cannot, because its strings may tremble in the air. My music may betray me, I mean, it may betray the place of my hideout. 
So I go on cowering, trying to imagine silence—only to be startled once more: in place of the first birdsongs of the day, there rise the shrieks of vultures.”

Being an artist, I find my inspiration also by artwork depicting the story. In each era, the artists did not shy away from staging David in garments that belongs to their time, and surrounding him with a contemporary scene. I take my cues from them. Here, for example, is a modern painting by Chagall, depicting David and Bathsheba. Compare it to this excerpt from the book:
(See More on Uvi's Blog of this Topic)


And the one image that keeps coming back to me is our reflection in the glass, where our faces melded into one. My eye, her eye, and around us, the outline of a new, fluid identity. A portrait of our love, rippling there, across the surface of the wine.”

You have a wide diversity in your writing. Do you prefer one genre more than others? What does it take; that is, what creates the spark for you to decide you want to write a specific book. And, once you've decided on the topic, how do you proceed?

I love historical fiction because I find it the most demanding of all the genres. You have to know a lot about the time and place, you cannot simply make stuff up. But what I bring with me from my poetry is something different: it is the attention to the music of words, the rhythms of our thoughts. 

The classification to genres is only one method available to you to discern the subject of a book. This method can be rigid. I trust that you use it in combination with reading the book description, and taking a peek at the first few pages, which gives you a true taste of the writing style.

I strive to stretch the envelope of what I create. In writing all of my books, I often break the confines of the particular genre, because life as we know it–and my art, which mirrors it– constantly changes from one genre to the next. One moment it is humorous; the next, it is erotic; then, it might be a tragedy.

Are there other writers, artists, who have inspired you more than others?

Surprisingly, I find poetry to be the greatest influence on my writing: I appreciate the nuances, the overloading of words, and the musical rhythms used in the poetry of Edgar Allan Poe, the sonnets by Shakespeare, and the lyrical descriptions of Virginia Wolfe, to name but a few. 

I love American authors as well as authors from around the world, for example The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain, Crime and Punishment by Dostoyevsky, and  Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger, for their expressive use of ‘stream of consciousness’. 

Playwrights have a great impact on my writing., for example The Price by Arthur Miller, because they teach me to listen to dialog, and identify emotions and motives through the speech patterns of the characters.

Continued...Watch for Next Post!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Uvi Poznansky - The Author - Featuring The David Chronicles





Uvi Poznansky is a bestselling, award-winning author, poet and artist. “I paint with my pen,” she says, “and write with my paintbrush.” Her romance boxed set, A Touch of Passion, is the 2016 WINNER of The Romance Reviews Readers' Choice Awards.


Education and work:
Uvi earned her B. A. in Architecture and Town Planning from the Technion in Haifa, Israel and practiced with an innovative Architectural firm, taking a major part in the large-scale project, called Home for the Soldier.

Having moved to Troy, N.Y. with her husband and two children, Uvi received a Fellowship grant and a Teaching Assistantship from the Architecture department at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. There, she guided teams in a variety of design projects and earned her M.A. in Architecture. Then, taking a sharp turn in her education, she earned her M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Michigan.

She worked first as an architect, and later as a software engineer, software team leader, software manager and a software consultant (with an emphasis on user interface for medical instruments devices.) All the while, she wrote and painted constantly, and exhibited in Israel and California. In addition, she taught art appreciation classes. Her versatile body of work includes bronze and ceramic sculptures, oil and watercolor paintings, charcoal, pen and pencil drawings, and mixed media.

Books and Genres:
Her two series won great acclaim. Still Life with Memories is a family saga series with touches of romance. It includes Apart From Love, My Own Voice, The White Piano, The Music of Us, and Dancing with Air. 


The David Chronicles is a historical fiction series. It includes Rise to Power, A Peek at Bathsheba, and The Edge of Revolt.




Her poetry book, Home, is in tribute to her father. Her collection of dark tales, Twisted, and her Historical Fiction book, A Favorite Son, are both new age, biblically inspired books. In addition, Uvi wrote and illustrated two children books, Jess and Wiggle and Now I Am Paper. For each one of these books, she created an animation video (find them on YouTube and on her Goodreads page.)

Mirror Mirror - By Uvi Poznansky


I stare at the mirror and the stranger, that woman 
who is cast back from there seems lost in her dreams.

I wash my hands in a strong flow of water. I lean down to erase a barely seen smear, to wipe it off the glass. Her hand comes after mine, as if in her trance she is forced to follow.  

I star
(Read in Original Language if desired) and the stranger, that 

My hand comes down upon that smear, rubbing it off, polishing it. But then, appearing from the other side, strange fingers dip into it. They draw, playfully perhaps, a rippling texture of slime. Her smile is evil, Lilith, through the smudges.

Mockingly she waves her hand at me as if to say goodbye. As if this is a farewell scene, staged against the background of a train station, and we the viewers are forced to come close to that familiar face, the face exposed by the eye of the camera; and then in one cut the image changes to the rail tracks, the wheels start to rattle, and one train car goes away, gradually fading into the distance.

Yes, as if this moment is dear to us, as if there is no way for us to choose, no way to turn our attention to any other detail. Until the eye of the camera is shut off. Until the spell has run its course.

My face encased in my hands I find myself in the same old routine, that same gesture of those who are deathly tired; and inside this emptiness I whisper to myself: Far, I want to go away, far away from here.

And what is the feeling of far, if not waves alternating between sinking and sinking deeper, taking me away from the anxieties of here and now, rocking me into the kingdom of dreams?

My eyes take a peek through the intervals between my fingers. This is the only way I am allowed to examine other shapes. The golden mirror frame. How ornamented, how intricate it is. Water burbling. Finger, interval, finger.

Mirror, mirror, is there any queen as beautiful as I?