Call to action before Earth Day!

Social media post The Erenwine Agenda

By now – especially if you already follow me on social media – you’ll have heard I have a book coming out. The Erenwine Agenda is about an intern architectural designer who takes on the natural gas industry. I’m pleased to share these early reviews of The Erenwine Agenda:

on the earth-healing perspective, a review from
shaman Janet StraightArrow:

“The Erenwine Agenda is a modern work of fiction that addresses many of the issues that face our generations today. In the story of Amalia and Mark we move through many layers and perspectives of innocence, science, lifestyle, idealism, environmentalism, romance and realities in being conscious humans living now, and doing business with corporate interests. Fracking and natural gas are the major focus in how they affect us, as other concerns are addressed. Their story has a surprise ending and thought provoking situations and solutions. This book is a journey of awakening and finding positive ways of taking action to assist a world in environmental distress.”

on the multicultural and architectural perspectives, a review from
architect and AIA Middle East President Raya Ani:

“A timely and contemporary novel about love and care for the world—The Erenwine Agenda helps us understand how we might navigate from a place of non-communication to a place of resolution. The primary characters, who are both of mixed ethnicity but of different cultural backgrounds, live a clashing breakdown of the polarities within themselves and in the environment around them. The story skillfully takes the reader from one event to another until Superstorm Sandy shocks the characters into redefining a new position in the world. The story feels very real as it puts us head on in conversation with ourselves, with the corporate structures that govern our lives, and by extension, with our idealism. The Erenwine Agenda crosses disciplines, crosses cultures, and crosses opposing viewpoints to arrive at a more compassionate and empathetic place.”

This is more about the book, and you can pre-order the Kindle version here:

Pre-order The Erenwine Agenda: a novel

Amalia Erenwine—an environmental activist working in New York City as an architectural intern—takes on the natural gas industry in this new book by Maia Kumari Gilman. Amalia rails against the underwriting of her employer’s work by a natural gas company involved with fracking. She clashes with the gas company’s petroleum geologist, executive Mark Stone—and yet, a hurricane of personal and continental proportions triggers the two of them to open their minds to a new world view.

Please share in advance of Earth Day! The more the merrier, as they say. Your kindness thus far in the development and sharing of this project is, quite frankly, amazing. I am both humbled and heartened by your support.

Much love,

-Maia

www.maiakumarigilman.com

 

#altopassante

SeaChange_MaiaKumariGilman

I’ve been figuring out how to share music with you, because music is important to me. It was a core influence in the writing of The Erenwine Agenda, which is not a book about music. It’s a book about design-thinking. And compassion.

The music carries the reader through the arc of design-thinking.

The music carries the reader through a journey of compassion.

Sound, in outdoor places—the hum of an all terrain vehicle, the whistle of birdcall—the sound of voices, carries the story.

It’s all music.

A phrase popped into my head upon waking this morning, one of those dream-state ideas. I wrote it down and googled it. It captures the essence of what I’m getting at here, even though I cannot find an exactly-perfect translation.

altopassante

It’s something like:

flying high. Traveling fast. Tall travel; passing height. Tall passer; passing over, at a height.

And so, this phrase that came to me, will do by way of explanation. #altopassante

A couple of years ago I sat for coffee on Granville Island in Vancouver with a dear friend and we, David and I, discussed this very topic. David and I met as undergraduate students in a post-colonial literature class run by the English Department at the University of British Columbia and was taught by the very smart Aruna Srivastava. Neither David nor I was an English major: I was an Urban Geography student (before Architecture) and David studied Music.

Somewhere in years after that Commonwealth Lit class, those interests of literature, geography and music came together in my work.

This made coffee with David the perfect setup to stumble into a deeper awareness of my involvement with music in literature. David drew a further understanding out of my thought process and made the music make sense to me, at it relates to my own creative process of writing. And I’m thinking of him now as I write this post about waking up with “altopassante” on my mind, because even though he would say “you totally made up that word!” I know David gets the core concept of this flow between music and literature, because he taught it to me.

This is the music that takes characters to that “altopassante” place, that drives a story to a height and then drops, air-pressure-like, to indicate conflict; that rises again with that “altopassante” energy, to arrive us in a newer and clearer place.

This is the music of The Erenwine Agenda:

 

Jascha Heifetz, Bach’s Chaconne from Partita No 2 in D minor 

 Norah Jones, Come Away With Me

Anoushka Shankar, Rise

Psy, Gangnam Style (강남스타일) M/V

Rhos Male Voice Choir – Music From The Welsh Mines

Celia Cruz, Para Decirte Adios

Pat Benatar, Love Is A Battlefield

Bobby McFerrin, Don’t Worry Be Happy

Anna Tomowa-Sintow, Mozart’s Requiem 

Barbara Bonney, Schubert’s Ave Maria

Julia Fischer, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons

 

Enjoy!

-Maia

www.maiakumarigilman.com

The Wild Side

i close my eyes
and see the wild places I’ve been

Sharing this beautiful and inspiring rap (yes, rap!) from Baba Brinkman this morning. A friend (Andi) posted about shifting from BC to NYC and the crazy juxtaposition of that, and that reminded me of a remarkable day, when I met Baba Brinkman on a bridge.

I had the unusual experience of appearing on The Highline at the exact moment that Baba set up to record the portion of this video that’s set there on The Highline. I was an audience of one: and it was immensely profound to sit next to him and his team while creating this.

I’d wondered if I should say something, me perching there next to the recording equipment, and when I heard him rap “I’m Canadian, eh,” I knew I would. We had a most wonderful conversation and found we both hail from Vancouver. The video above is filmed half in Vancouver and half in NYC.

i love the wilderness
and then…
you can see it when you close your eyes
and dream

It’s a unique time to be Canadian in the United States – our perspective is perhaps different than our counterparts – and never more vital and relevant to the expansion of ideas right where we live, on the wild side.

-Maia

ZAHA: a tribute

zaha

My dear friend Raya Ani of RAW-NYC Architects is giving a tribute to Zaha Hadid in Austria on April 10th.

Raya has asked the Iraqi embassy to hold the doors open for a few more public seats – a few free are tickets left – and so if you are in the area please consider attending, and share!

-Maia

p.s. If you see Raya take a picture together and send to me! ❤

Help RD? Hell, yes!

RD pic

Do you ever get a “hell, yes!” feeling? I had that when I saw this appeal to assist friend, Feng Shui master and fellow Architect, RD Chin. RD is fabulous and needs support now with burdensome medical expenses. He is a friend and a colleague and it means a lot to be able to reach out to all of you to ask for help on his behalf. Thank you.

rd book

He is also the author of Feng Shui Revealed: An Aesthetic Practical Approach to the Ancient Art of Space Alignment, a book I have very much enjoyed and that you might also benefit from adding to your library.

Please share this link to the campaign for help with his medical expenses, established by his friends and family:

https://www.youcaring.com/ronaldrdchin-794246?fb_action_ids=10154870266399667&fb_action_types=youcaringcom%3Ashare

New Book Alert!

Social media post The Erenwine Agenda

I’m excited to announce that my novel, The Erenwine Agenda, is now available for pre-order on Amazon!

This is the short description:

An intern architectural designer takes on the natural gas industry.

This is the little-bit-longer description:

Amalia Erenwine—an environmental activist working in New York City as an architectural intern—takes on the natural gas industry in this new book by Maia Kumari Gilman. Amalia rails against the underwriting of her employer’s work by a natural gas company involved with fracking. She clashes with the gas company’s petroleum geologist, executive Mark Stone—and yet, a hurricane of personal and continental proportions triggers the two of them to open their minds to a new world view.

Have a look, buy, bookmark and share. This is ecofiction that wants to roll out well before Earth Day, so please help the book along with a good word online. And for those who are wondering: the book encompasses a spectrum of politics and possibility. There is room for everyone here. ❤

Thank you!

More information can be found here: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/new-book-release-erenwine-agenda-maia-kumari-gilman

I’m excited…did I say that already?!

-Maia 🙂

Thoughts for Students of Architecture…

Promo Poster for Launch of The Erenwine Agenda

…after having written a novel about an intern architectural designer.

I put a free-form talk together this morning for you guys. It is 7.5 minutes long – have a listen and do comment and share!

Here is the talk – click to listen.

 

Have a great design-day all,

-Maia

www.maiakumarigilman.com

p.s. I will see about transcribing or refining this talk for those who are interested. Message me for more info.

p.p.s. The book will be out soon. Best way to keep abreast of updates is to follow me on one of my social media channels or here on Goodreads. Thanks!