In December 2016, Tim Shields left behind his career in marketing and advertising for ghostwriting. He has since worked with two New York Times bestselling authors, both of whom write about the nature of reality, consciousness, quantum physics, healing, and more. Holding creative writing and philosophy degrees from Loyola University in Baltimore, Maryland, Shields decided he was ready to step out of the ghostwriting role and publish his debut novel.
“This book is about overcoming the self, that voice in our head that’s not loving or kind to us. Beyond that, there’s a much deeper philosophy at play about the nature of reality and the role of consciousness to shape it.” Shields adds with laughter, “It’s kind of like a ‘Portrait of the Artist’ as a middle-aged, spiritual man. Thomas is an artist searching for his voice and a writer searching for his story.”
Taking inspiration from his own life and travels, Shields says, “After a decade bookended by sick and dying parents, I decided to set out to try and uncover what I’ve always called my ‘soul ache.” He adds, “I think each of us has our own soul ache, and whether we are conscious of it or not, it’s one of the central drivers of our life.”
On the morning of his thirty-sixth birthday, Shields’ protagonist Thomas Furey finds himself alone and jobless. Devastated by the recent loss of his mother, he feels untethered, like he is falling into the depths of something he can’t describe. On a whim, he buys a one-way ticket to India. Possessed by fear, armed with hope, protected by naïveté, and guided by intention, when Thomas learns to operate in alignment with his true self, serendipity intervenes.
As Thomas journeys all over Southeast Asia for a year, he learns about becoming a man in the shadow of his parent’s death, surrendering his past and trusting the future that is pulling him forward, and the power of gratitude and intention to shape his reality.
“Sitting on the mountain, it occurred to me that traveling was a lot like writing,” says the protagonist. “When you sit down to write, you have no idea where you’ll be when you get to the end. Sometimes the journey is joyful, sometimes it’s terrifying, and sometimes it reduces you to tears of gratitude or despair. And sometimes the most fantastic, serendipitous events get you to the next chapter when you simply do the work, stay open to ideas, and follow where they lead you.”
As publisher Lisa Michelle Umina observes, “We are releasing this book at a time when, more than ever before, people are inquiring about the nature of our existence. This book challenges readers to find their own answers and seek their own stories.”
Shields’ nephew and godson, Jack Shields, created an original musical score for the book’s theatrical trailer. This collaboration led to the creation of an original soundtrack for the book, which is currently being shopped around to record labels. To view the book trailer and for more information, visit the book’s website: www.acuriousyear.com.
The book is now available globally at Halo Publishing International, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble, Goodreads and Books a Million in Hardcover for $26.95, in Paperback for $19.95, and as an e-Book for $9.99.
About Halo Publishing International:
Halo Publishing International publishes adult fiction and non-fiction, children’s literature, and self-help, spiritual, and faith-based books. We continually strive to help authors reach their publishing goals and provide many different services that help them do so. More information is available at www.HaloPublishing.com