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Second to the Right

Last week, I mentioned that building bridges and establishing new relationships were one of the major keys to success.  One example of this happened in the underground of Penn Station, New York City, on the LIRR (Long Island Rail Road) heading back to Long Island on a cold December evening. Having had one of the most exhausting and stressful days of my life  - an absurdly crowded train was the last thing I needed.  Little did I know, things changed, the impossible day, ended with endless possibilities.

A young gentleman appeared in the train, walked down the aisle, and asked me if the (literally) only empty seat which happened to be next to mine in the train car was taken.  I wasn't one to deny anyone of a seat and was more than glad to offer the seat, (especially being he had an enormous suitcase with him and I knew back then what it was like to travel heavy on crowded planes, trains, and buses.)  He sat down next to me, and after a few minutes we began to strike up a friendly conversation on many topics: mobile devices, conversations with neighbors on the train, and of course, travel and aviation.  Not only did we have great conversations, but they lasted all the way to our connecting train, then on to my final destination.  (I almost missed my stop not to any one's fault.  Time flies when you are having fun and we were the flight crew that night for the hour duration.)  

Little did I know, Zach Neuman, the very gentleman I sat next to on the crowded train that night, would eventually take to the controls in the left seat and take us on an international flight back in time to Edwardian London and introduce us to his first novel and character, David:

Zach explains:

"This is the origin story Peter Pan deserves. Utilizing the source material as much as possible, this story shows the beginnings of the "Boy who would never grow up" the way it could have happened. Stuck in Edwardian London, our young protagonist will find his way to do the impossible, to fly amongst the stars and onward to Neverland with even the biggest skeptics believing in him again."

Intrigued to know more, Zach explains further:

"Where Peter Pan's story begins, he was already doing the impossible.
St. Augustine’s fences, covered in an icy black tar and tall enough to touch the clouds, were supposed to keep the orphan boys from escaping. Yet David decided to accept the challenge and was already at the top. From so far up, the treetops were within reach, the sky felt closer and the world felt open to him for the first time. And the grown-ups looked like tiny dots.
He felt like he was levitating off of the ground, with one leap away from freedom. After losing all of his friends to the cold world that was Edwardian London, he was determined to find a way out of it, to rise above it to the world he truly wished to live in. A world where anything was possible, even to never grow up.
So in the moment before he jumped off the top, with his fingers sparkling with warm, golden dust and armed with a lovely thought, he knew that this was the only way to escape the world he despised and begin his journey to Neverland."

I definitely will be reading this novel and I urge everyone to purchase it and #spreadtheword not to mention, nominate, and hashtag #WildWoodPrize to vote for his novel with @Wildwood_Prize .  Zach can be found on Twitter (@Zach_Neuman) and his blogsite The Shining Jar.  

His novel can be purchased through several sites (a permanent badge has been placed on the right hand side of this website.)

(Please note: that some sites may require subscriptions to purchase his novel!)

Something in my mind told me to keep in touch with Zach - to keep building that bridge we had started - after we shook hands and temporarily parted ways.  Our paths crossed for a reason - not by mere chance.  We do indeed remain in touch on social media to this very day after I unfortunately had to leave the Big Apple.  

* * * * * * * 

A special thank you and congratulations to Zach for becoming a new author, for writing his novel, sharing its message, and thank you for reaching out, not only to me in NY after a difficult day, but reaching out and connecting to many other people, abroad through his brilliant command of the English language.




  1. Jeremy, I went to Amazon to buy this book...and can't find it. I will go to his blog next. You know, there is always a reason people come in our paths... if we are open to offer the seat and share a conversation we will learn why. Thank you for sharing this new read!


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