Blog Tour Including a Guest Post by Eva A. Blaskovic, Author of Beyond the Precipice

About Beyond The Precipice by Eva A. Blaskovic:

A young man with a dark secret must choose between his family and the girl he loves.

For six years Bret Killeen is trapped by the wishes of his dead father, blackmailed by his brother, and rejected by his uncle. Meanwhile, he watches his mother descend into the depths of poverty.

As Bret wrestles with guilt over the death of his father, he is helped by Nicole, a young cello player with big dreams. She stirs the embers of his longing both for music and for her - and ignites a fire he can't extinguish.

But can he brave his past in order to seize his future?
The award-worthy debut novel by Eva A. Blaskovic is a riveting blend of suspense, dark humor, and compelling inter-personal drama. Once you engage this roller coaster read you won't be able to stop.

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Guest Blog: In the Eye of the Beholder
by Eva Blaskovic

I grew up believing that you present your attributes to the world, get evaluated objectively, and, based on that evaluation, get assigned the lifestyle you have earned (a.k.a. deserve).

Instead, this wisdom should be applied: Do not present yourself to the world to be evaluated. Assign yourself a value and then present yourself to the world.

When you allow the world to evaluate you, you are empowering other mortals to assess you, with the assumption that they will be objective and have your best interests in mind. In reality, your judges are subjective people with a sphere of life experiences that may be vastly different from your own, are emotional, and have their own interests, problems, prejudices, values, and beliefs through which their perception of you is filtered.

Evaluation is what happens in school, for example. If the subject is math, which isn't subjective and can’t be contested, you’ll likely get an objective assessment in the form of a grade. Tests are capable of evaluating some knowledge, but it is well known today that they do not asses a person’s multiple intelligences accurately. In high school English and social studies, you have to utilize talents and attributes—if you’re lucky to already have them—to the tune of insight, maturity, worldly knowledge, inference, persuasion, written language ability, and the ability to read your teacher and understand the rubric, in addition to knowing essay structure and textbook facts, to get your good marks. It doesn't stop there. Students are evaluated, assessed, and have their futures determined in arts (including music and theatre), athletics, and sciences. People are also evaluated later in life through careers and activities.

But here’s the thing. How do you explain all those who, at some point in their lives (usually early on) had been written off, and yet today they are well-known names—people respected for their abilities, insights, inventions, or other contributions to society?

Thomas Edison: assessed by an elementary schoolteacher as “addled,” when he was, in fact, partially deaf. Thankfully, his mother knew better, homeschooled him, and gave him the chance to reach his potential, which was to become the greatest inventor of the twentieth century, opening a series of companies, some of which are still in existence today.
Lucille Ball: “Too shy.”
The Beatles: “Their guitar music is on the way out.”
Michael Jordan: Cut from the school’s basketball team.
Walt Disney: “No original ideas.”

In this motivational video, who is the real problem? The person? Or the judge(s)?
Thus, the whole rationale many of us live by is backwards.

Why does the reverse work? One thing I've noticed to be ubiquitous—whether in the playground or throughout incidences in history—is that people always respond to confidence. Confidence translates as knowledge and ability, which translates as desirable leadership and good decision-making.
History and the schoolyard have, however, shown us that this is not always true. Confident people do not always have the best answers and frequently muddle things up worse than the non-confident, too shy to speak up but more knowledgeable people. Yet confident people who are good leaders continue to draw willing followers because they are convincing. Since people insist on responding in this way, we can work with it.
If you track successful people, whether they became successful at a young age or have taken a lifetime to figure it out, they all have something in common that they've applied and that works. They evaluate themselves first (or a significant adult believes in them), which makes them confident, gives them purpose, and makes them feel that they have something to offer the world (which they do). Because they have made their own evaluation first, they do not indiscriminately accept everyone else’s judgment along the way, are not as easily discouraged or sidetracked, and thus are not shaken from their cause—or their course—which is to make a living on their own terms. This living is simply an exchange of goods and/or services: they offer something to others that is considered valuable, and others reward them in a way that gives them a satisfying lifestyle.
The more they believe in themselves and persevere, the more others believe in them. When others believe in them, they find their income niche, creating that satisfying lifestyle—on their terms—doing things they want to do, which simultaneously allow them to make a living and thrive. They have convinced others of their value, and hence others have valued (and paid) them.
Thus, the more you believe you can—the more you know you can—the more others believe you can, until it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. And that is why you have to assign yourself a value first and then present yourself to the world.

Eva Blaskovic was born in the Czech Republic, grew up in Ontario, Canada, and moved to Alberta in 1988, where she raised four children. Eva has worked in science labs and has taught literacy, writing, math, and science. She is both an accomplished writer and editor of non-fiction articles on business, education, how-to, parenting, and travel. She is also an author of short fiction. Beyond the Precipice is Eva Blaskovic's first full length novel, but it has already received rave reviews from literary professionals and aficionados the world over. When Eva hasn't buried herself in writing or editing, she may be found taking her teenagers to Taekwondo, exploring the Farmers' Market, listening to Celtic music, or sipping a latte.

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