Being Your Own Hero by Perry McDaid, Guest Fiction Editor

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When Sue asked that I be a guest editor for Liquid Imagination, I found myself eager to do so. Not because I had any stunning revelations for the rather humbling talent showcased in this classy site, but rather to acknowledge what is apparent and encourage what can be.  Now there’s a pretentious phrase! I’d better clarify it before you all switch off entirely.

We live, for the most, in a competitive society where people either strive for acceptance by their peer group – or to clamber over them to grab that ever-present brass ring. Few ever analyse that metaphor quite enough. A “brass ring”.

When coined, brass was quite valuable. Nowadays, not so much – so in effect the value of the prize is transient. Art forms, on the other hand, are eternally worthy, from cave paintings through the intricate engineering of Newgrange in Ireland where the entire burial barrow is lit through a small aperture on the summer solstice, to the Book of Kells, with its painstakingly hand-painted (in ink) illustrations.

Don’t be put off by the Irish slant here. I’m aware of the wealth of art throughout the world and delight in learning of more. The history of the Kingdom of Benin, the grand architecture of Petra –obliquely advertised in the second Transformers movie – to the sublime document that is The Declaration of Independence.

There may be those who subscribe but are daunted by making the mistake of comparing their work to the incredible examples of the arts available in Liquid Imagination, combined with the influence of a social agenda which represents that there is only one right way.

To those who may be so affected, I present the truth that art is beauty and beauty flows through every aspect of existence, through every person. Everyone has something to offer and that something is just as valuable as anything else. It may take you a while to find it, but you will. Never settle, because inside us all there is that individual, irrefutable and irreplaceable piece of genius that no-one else can provide.

Depending upon your perspective it is God-given grace, a muse, nature’s inspiration, a random accident of genetic and environmental conditioning, or a gift of the universe. Irrespective, it is still there. I think you can tell from the tenor of Liquid Inspiration that the editors recognise this, and want to see it. So come on, out with it.

As to the picking of stories for publishing? I’ve been around for a while and let me tell you, I dread this not for the lack of quality, but for the abundance of it. Each story selected will be on a subjective basis, depending on my imperfect and flowing (there’s that word again) taste. I urge those not chosen not to be discouraged, but to celebrate that each had the courage and acumen to stand up to be counted. Be your own Kelly Clarkson or Demi Levato – and prevail.


BIO: Prize-winning poet and writer, honours graduate, Perry McDaid (DipLCW) has enjoyed international success both individually with four poetry anthologies and, a quiz book, plus The Milesian, an adaptation of Irish myth, and in collaboration with popular poets.

He has received acclaim in both literary and commercial arenas (e.g. The Irish Exhibition, which tours internationally, and on various poetry websites). Over 800 poems published by 60 different imprints (over 1000 publications) and multiple short stories in various publications – so far.

His stage play The Camouflage Murders was shortlisted for screen adaptation and is currently being expanded into a novel in between the writing of his new fictional opus presenting an entirely different aspect of life in Northern Ireland before and during the troubles.

The new poetry e-anthology – Cardboard City Opera – is a study of the disenfranchised and the reasons they remain so. It also looks at the various reactions to their plight.

His current novel, Paladin of Tarrthála, available through FeedARead and Amazon.

He has said – “I’d sooner be read cheaply than be too cheap to be read.”

He resides with his family in Derry, Northern Ireland, snuggled beneath the Donegal hills.