Gregg Levoy is the author of This Business of Writing. He is a full-time freelance writer whose essays and articles have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Washington Post, Omni, Psychology Today, and others. He lectures and teaches workshops about callings.
A "calling" may not come in the form of a booming voice from the sky, complete with lightning flashes and claps of thunder. Levoy, a workshop leader and adjunct professor of journalism at the University of New Mexico, suggests that callings are in fact everywhere, waiting to be heard and acted upon. Through informal yet encouraging anecdotes and advice, Levoy guides readers to recognize and pursue their callings in work, relationships, lifestyle choices and service to others. Callings can come through many different channels, including physical symptoms, "synchronicities" (events that are connected to one another in time), intuitions, dreams-even fortune cookie messages. All one need do is recognize them, and take action. Combining the psychology of self-actualization with spirituality, he calls on readers to do what their souls have long been telling them to do. For Levoy, realizing one's own potential and awakening to callings makes it possible to do virtually anything, from quitting one's job to saving the whales. Not doing so, he claims, can lead to maladies from restlessness and depression to physical illness: "We cannot refuse with impunity." In the crowded field of books about letting go and listening to the heart, Levoy's guidance and encouragement reward those willing to lend an ear to their conscience. Author tour. (Oct.)
If life is truly a process and not a destination, the possibility of actually trying a few of the alternate routes that occasionally beckon becomes real. In this inspiring book, Levoy, formerly a columnist for the Cincinnati Inquirer, shares the personal journeys of an assortment of people who were willing to take risks to find their authentic selves, unsure whether they would achieve self-actualization or enrichment. The author followed his own calling and is now a freelance writer and lecturer and teaches journalism. Elevated far above the category of self-help by Levoy's masterly writing, this book reads more like a philosophical guide for those who dare to examine their dreams and take action to explore them. He includes an extensive bibliography and instructions on contacting the people who shared their personal stories for a "continued" dialog. Recommended, especially for those readers who've experienced enough of life to wonder if it was meant to include authenticity and joy.‘Catherine T. Charvat, John Marshall Lib., Alexandria, Va.