Slaying Dragons by Mariam Kobras

I’ll be reviewing The Distant Shore by Mariam Kobras in the not too distant future, but wanted to go ahead and welcome her for a guest post during her “Love is in the Air” Blog Hop & Giveaway.

Mariam KobrasMy son is slaying dragons.

Not real dragons, of course, they are just evil critters in a video game. He battles them with virtual swords and words of power that pluck the beasts from the sky and make them vulnerable. He needs to kill them before he can go on winning the world of Skyrim and be a hero.

I enjoy watching him play these games, it’s a bit like watching a very long, interactive movie. I know the characters, feel for them, wishing they will win their battles for freedom and get a piece of happiness in that cold, rocky land of theirs. Skyrim is not a game for the faint of heart, and it’s definitely not for those who are afraid of dragons.

Here I am watching my teenage son play, when I’m supposed to be writing this guest post for the blog hop.
Last night, sitting in this same spot on the Chesterfield couch my sister gave me when she moved to Scotland (different story; I’m only bragging about the Chesterfield.) I was whining at my dear publisher about this blog hop and how I hated to be torn away from my “real” writing for so long to do all these posts, and how I was scared that I’d lost it and would never be able to write another word or a book again.

Of course, being a good publisher, MaryChris kicked my butt and told me to just get moving, she was quite sure I had lost nothing, and would be just fine, and there were a lot of novels in me yet. There was only this one post left for me to write just now, and then I’d be free to return to Jon and Naomi and their story.

Here’s the thing.

Even while we were talking about this, I had this epiphany, this moment of enlightenment, when, for an instant, I understood the meaning of “Writer’s Block”. Writer’s Block, this much discussed, famed, feared state of mind when a writer thinks she has nothing more to say, when she believes the well has dried up. When she thinks there will never be another word, chapter, let alone another book, and this career is over before it even really started.

I felt that way last night. I felt as if I’d never be able to return to my novel, never be able to pick up the thread and find the story again. And it wasn’t because I didn’t want to write.

Writing a novel is a bit like buying the house next door, furniture, carpeting, pets, plants, cars, and people, everything included. It’s yours. You can go there whenever you feel like it. The people in that house, they have their own lives, their own ambitions and dreams, their loves and desires, and you have the power to go there and watch them lead their lives, follow them everywhere, even…well yes, even into their bedroom, if you feel like it. You own the key to that house and to everything that goes on inside. While you live in your own house, with your own family, friends, daily worries, boring grocery shopping, dirty bathrooms, and a barfing cat, only you can leave this all behind and step into the world you’ve created in that other house.

Distant Shore by Mariam KobrasI think, no; I’m convinced that Writer’s Block is nothing but a missing key. You’ve misplaced a key now and then, haven’t you? Well, the same thing happens when you think you have Writer’s Block. You’ve just misplaced the key to that other house.

For me, it happened just now when writing guest posts instead of working on Song of the Storms, overwhelmed me, and I forgot where I had put that key, sort of.

I know it’s somewhere here. I was certain I had put it on the shelf in the hallway where I keep my car key too, but it’s not there. I’ll probably find it in the kitchen, or in my coat pocket. Or in the purse I used last.
It has to be somewhere in this house, because I clearly remember locking the other, fantasy house the last time I left it. I can see the lights in the window of that other house, I can see the people in it moving around, I can even catch the scent of what they’re cooking for dinner. So, I know they’re still there, living their lives, waiting for me to return. They are patient, and they’ll welcome me back with an embrace once I’ve found the misplaced key.

So, this is the last dragon I have to fight before I can go on winning the world. Somehow I think I’ve won the fight.

And I also think I recall where I put that key. It’s in the bathroom, right next to my bottle of Penhaligon perfume.

I’m getting it now.

Born in Frankfurt, Germany, Mariam lived in Brazil and Saudi Arabia with her parents as a child before they decided to settle in Germany. She attended school there and studied American Literature and Psychology at Justus-Liebig-University in Giessen. Today she lives and writes in Hamburg, Germany, with her husband, two sons and two cats. The storyline for The Distant Shore was inspired by her fascination with the limitations fame can impose on people. Her book explores the value of love in a world where money and a front-page photo are sometimes more important than a person’s soul. To learn more about Mariam, visit her website.

– Win The Distant Shore by Mariam Kobras –

This was the eleventh stop on Mariam’s The Distant Shore “Love is in the Air” Blog Hop & Giveaway. We hope you enjoyed this post and will join us Wednesday for another guest post at Carrick Publishing.

Buddhapuss Ink is giving away copies of Mariam’s book, along with some pretty terrific (and very romantic) gifts, as we count down to that most romantic day of the year—Valentine’s Day! Want to enter the giveaway? Leave a comment on this post for one entry.

Want more chances to win? Click here for all the info!


  • sabrina ogden

    February 8, 2012 - 3:27 PM

    This is a beautiful post, Miriam!

    As I’m reading about your son slaying dragons, and about how you “know the characters, feel for them, wishing they will win their battles for freedom and get a piece of happiness in that cold, rocky land of theirs.” This… is ME when I read a good book. 😉

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  • Buddhapuss Ink

    February 7, 2012 - 1:07 PM

    Thanks again for hosting Mariam today for the Blog Hop. We’re looking forward to your review!

  • Bunny

    February 7, 2012 - 10:37 AM

    I don’t think you have to worry about losing the key, Mariam – because you have lots of copies of that key! (And you can always climb in the window)

    • Mariam Kobras

      February 7, 2012 - 12:29 PM

      That’s where you’re wrong, my dear. I have many HOUSES! 😀

  • Amberr Meadows

    February 7, 2012 - 9:38 AM

    You can just do no wrong, Mariam. I have enjoyed following your hops and reading the reviews of others’. I am a lifelong fan now.

    • Mariam Kobras

      February 7, 2012 - 12:29 PM

      *blush* 🙂

  • Krishenka

    February 7, 2012 - 9:27 AM

    You were right I was a tad to early in searching you out. I agree with Jaqui in that you have such a faulous sense of humour,and if I had a chesterfield I would brag too!
    Wishing you all the best and now I am of to pick up my thread and finish my embroidery. Have a great day.

    • Mariam Kobras

      February 7, 2012 - 12:28 PM

      You too, Chris, have a fabulous day!

  • Johanna Harness

    February 7, 2012 - 8:51 AM

    So glad you found your key, Mariam! 🙂

    • Mariam Kobras

      February 7, 2012 - 12:27 PM

      So glad you think so! 🙂

  • Jaqui Somers

    February 7, 2012 - 8:44 AM

    You do make me giggle Mariam – love your humour and the fact that YOU love your chesterfield … AND what a brilliant analogy – you need to patent it and share it with all those others who have misplaced the key. xxx

    • Mariam Kobras

      February 7, 2012 - 12:27 PM

      Thank you, Jaqui! The Chesterfield is quite comfy, btw! 😉

  • Mariam Kobras

    February 7, 2012 - 8:29 AM

    Thank you so much for being part of the blog hop for “The Distant Shore”, Elisabeth! A great honor!