Monday, December 6, 2010

Biography Caroline Gerardo


Friends and family call Caroline Gerardo C.G. She was born Cincinnati Ohio.

C.G.’s father was a Portuguese and Cree Nation a PHD Nuclear Physicist. He married an Irish Catholic girl he met in Philadelphia. Her father worked on heat shields, bomb projects and had the family of five children moving about every year. Her mother, Annmarie wanted to be an opera star, but she settled upon teaching to supplement the family income.

Before she was nine, she lived in Boston, Indianapolis, Philadelphia and Radnor. The family moved to West Covina California in 1970. She worked to pay to attend Bishop Amat High School. Caroline worked since age fourteen. She graduated Magna Cum Laude with dual degrees in Literature and Fine Art from Scripps College and an MFA from Claremont Graduate School.

C. G. worked for Great Western then merged to Washington Mutual Bank for twenty years up to Senior Vice President of the mortgage banking operation.
She's written four novels, published two, Toxic Assets and The Lucky Boy. Short stories and poetry in 30 magazines To name a few:
Sleet, One Stop Poetry, Narrative, The River Styx, Mid Western Gothic, Olentangy Review

She has two wonderful children Blair and Carson.
Caroline sold her house in Laguna Niguel and moved off grid to ranch in 2016.
She has dogs, chickens, turtles a cat and an organic garden

I am working on the trailer for "Toxic Assets" completing photographs and video of night stormy oceans to represent the Turks and Caicos scenes where Katherine and Rob cover up the murder of Jackson.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Toxic Asset Review Clips



Caroline Gerardo

“Katherine McVeigh is the strong woman president of “Nationwide Bank.” The beauty is healing from a failed marriage. When she accepts a job, she does not realize she is being set up for the murders of board members for profit. Her ex has stolen all her assets, but she strives to work to provide for her sons. As the plot thickens, she begins to feel something for Rob, a new man in her life.”

“This is timely and interesting story will have you wondering, can she survive?”

“A Masterful Thriller.”

“Caroline Gerardo’s writing style engages your heart.”

Friday, November 19, 2010

i am a little church

i am a little church(no great cathedral) I is spelled small cap to signify himself as diminutive

far from the splendor and squalor of hurrying cities splendor and SQUALOR hear the sound of the screaming

-i do not worry if briefer days grow briefest, plays with the sound of briefest as a word this is rule fracturing

i am not sorry when sun and rain make april…….more s sounds like wind and spring to come hopeful

my life is the life of the reaper and the sower; repeating life cycle repeating his theme

my prayers are prayers of earth's own clumsily striving…. environmentalist

(finding and losing and laughing and crying)children…Taotist theme yin/yang he is yin female energy with dark

whose any sadness or joy is my grief or my gladness the dynamism of the universe at one with others

around me surges a miracle of unceasing… he breaks here for emphasis

birth and glory and death and resurrection:

over my sleeping self float flaming symbols the yang of sun and fire and fire tongues above Disciples heads

of hope,and i wake to a perfect patience of mountains…Chinese symbol

i am a little church(far from the frantic……this humble building is not a skyscraper, it is not commercial

world with its rapture and anguish)at peace with nature rapture not the religious kind

-i do not worry if longer nights grow longest; I am not afraid of death

i am not sorry when silence becomes singing

winter by spring,i lift my diminutive spire to… Christ lifting the bread of his body to Heaven and the cycle of life

merciful Him Whose only now is forever:… Refers to Christ

standing erect in the deathless truth of His presence

(welcoming humbly His light and proudly His darkness)… Death and not afraid

Words he repeats: Death Cycle Spring Church I My

I am a little Church- he puts church small letters as he does himself – Not a Worldwide Body of Christians, Not a Formal Congregation, I think he means I am a community- I am a wooden clapboard box that welcomes and brings people together not only to worship but to share love.

Prosaic style is straightforward. Rhythm flows in repeating sounds and words. Not deep erudite symbols that are vague the symbols are from the Seasons, the Cycle of Life- birth life death, Christ, and the little building itself

What we know about Cummings:

Father taught at Harvard and was a Unitarian Minister. Mother an important socialite. He studied the classics and attended Harvard. He knew other great poets of his time. Cummings dressed weird and anti-social in his early years (not like wearing a wire haired cave man jacket but wanted to look artistic). He drove an ambulance in France in WWI. There he saw many wounded bloody and gruesome things, but was not affected in the same way as other writers/poets and artists of his time who also experienced the rages of war. He was in a concentration camp in France. Cummings throws aside despair and moves on to create change. He stays in Paris and enjoys all those French women in the Dance Halls. He returns to America and is not accepted as an intellectual poet. He makes his living as a painter. This is important as he is a visual speaker – I mean by that - he has a movie in his mind’s eye and the poem opens it for you.
He was interested in Taoist theory and Chinese painting ( think calligraphy and how the artist must control the brush to make one perfect watercolor brushstroke or the painting is ruined- the Master has practiced painting the same tree a thousand times so it is abbreviated to the most simple form with grace). See picture … Cummings said he should have "lived in China where a poet is also a painter."

The poem is written about a real life experience after VE Day (when WWII was just announced to be over…) He and his wife are in rural New Hampshire driving and he sees this church lit up like Christmas. He stops the car and gets out to experience a spiritual event under the trees watching the people of the small town ( population 1500) all sharing community- being one together. Although some may read the poem as Religious in an organized way, I don’t read it so…There is Biblical clear reference to Christ’s life but the little “i” he is talking about is yes God’s unending love but to me the idea of love for community, love for family, love for this earth, passionate love and love of life.

Cummings the poet knew. “Every sound has its own peculiar silence,” he said, and to his mother once declared: “i am a small-i poet but not necessarily a small-i person.”

Structurally in his poetry he tried new things- purposeful bad punctuation, using all lower case… See in the poem he does not capitalize I – rather he uses the small “i”; however he does use Him to refer to God/Christ. This avant garde use of structure is not because the is a country bumpkin- it is a tool to get to the reader. He makes poetry “look easy” –this is a terribly impossible thing to accomplish without inherent practice and natural talent. How does the Olympic gymnast make a triple back handspring appear easy?- The must have genetics, and unending practice. His writing structure is like that-easy but labored upon to seem accessible. He wants you to think “natural”.

Read the poem aloud, have Boo read it aloud slowly. Cummings wants each individual reader to not pick apart the allusions but enjoy the personal to each soul. When Boo reads it – you will hear something different. The poem builds inside the reader’s heart.

Your teacher may want you to annotate and pick apart the poem and I will show this below. I think you give the picky-uni –Freudian-conventional analysis to the teacher and also say: this is not how you read Cummings.

Cummings was never a church-going man. He is deeply spiritual but more in a naturalist –seeing God in the “reaping and sowing(er)” of the seasons. He speaks about this cycle of life in the poem. Days grow shorter and dark nights longer (just as now in your life it is Fall in Atlanta and the cool sets in your daily rhythm and we look forward to spring and sunshine ). Cummings does use some signs in the poem though this is NOT his usual trick of language. The secret code he uses is about himself.

Was Cummings a granola cruncher before his time? Yes. He is a Beat Poet 20 years before them. He is anti-Big society, anti- massive Churches and anti-mass society. If Cummings were alive today would he be an Environmental Ethics / Social Environmentalist / Monkey Wrench Gang/ Earth First protester? Maybe he would paint about the ordinary beauty being destroyed?
Church painting by Roz

His paintings are not in my humble opinion “great” but help you understand what he was saying in words- being somewhat abstract but representational.

This is called “Poet on a Mountaintop” by Chen Zhou. Imagine the little house in the lower right is a church. This painter is also a wonderful poet.

This is the actual Church in New Hampshire that he experienced. It looks more cheerful and strong in the photo but look at the side windows it is really tiny- about 500 square feet

OK so how did you read his poem?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Toxic Assets



Caroline Gerardo

Copyright © 2010 by Caroline Gerardo

All rights reserved. Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise) without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, brands, media, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are fictitious. Brand names are generally available language or historic in content. The author acknowledges the trademarked status and trademark owners of various products referenced in this work of fiction, which are used without permission. The publication/use of these trademarks is not authorized, associated with, or sponsored by the trademark owners

* * * * *

I would like to thank many people, if only I could list them all.

Only God knows what spark starts a mentoring. Bill Broza you have been my closest friend so many years, I thank you for your voice that yelled about Freddie and Fannie in 2002, when we knew them so well. I also want to thank a few who are gone from this earth but are part of I business that was honorable, caring and delivered the American dream.

My Dad always preached, “Kid if you plan and work hard you can do anything.”

All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or deceased is purely coincidental. I hold no responsibility for accuracy or omissions. I was employed by Washington Mutual Bank I deny any similarity to persons or actions in this work of fiction. This is a murder mystery, a fictional story. This genre allows for twists, fabrications, and violence in the name of fiction.

In May 2007 I started, this novel not knowing that a million people in my industry would be unemployed when I was completed. America began the Third Great Depression during the course of my idea to write this story.

I say thank you to my beloved children Blair and Carson.

Tony you are my rock.

This story should, and eventually might go on, but it had to pause. I hope I have given you enough to tell you what it was like, as Shawn Skjonsby says “back in the day.”

* * * * *


* * * * *


Newport Beach Bahia Corinthian Private Yacht Club7/1/2004

“Meet me at nine forty behind the Balboa Yacht Club.”

“It’s too cold tonight for me to go over to the Clubhouse bar. You are always late. I’ll wait on my boat, we can talk there.” James Adam answers while curling his thick eyebrows with his fingers.

That he calls it only a ‘boat’ is comical. It is an elaborate extravaganza. James Adam bought his yacht with cash. The ship is a one hundred fifty one foot toy he acquired when retired from South Africa. He sold his mining, grain and materials shipping company for billions after refinancing his international dry goods shipping company. Adams christened her “Cash Out.” The ship’s name is tacky and painted the green hue of a mint dollar bill with eighteen-Carat gold leaf accents.

“Got cash out with Citigroup,” Adam likes bragging

In 1996, he controlled the Baltic Dry Index in twenty of forty routes. Now Adam takes it easy spending evenings on the ship docked in Newport Harbor. He dodders around making lists of chores for his crew made up mostly of illegals. During the day light hours, Adam is the controlling Head of the Board of Nationwide Bank, a medal on his chest he wears with arrogance.

“Don’t tell your wife where you are going. Just tell Claire you have to leave town for a night.” The killer’s tone is jovial.

“Fine, it will be a break from Claire hovering over me.” Adam chuckles about the old ball and chain joke.

Adam fixes a High Ball in a Waterford tumbler while his cigarette smolders on the counter. His blonde wife Claire never allows him to drink or smoke at home. Savoring the feel of the crystal in his hand and the crunch of the ice on his teeth Adam sips the amber bourbon. A cracking sound from the wheelhouse leads him to investigate below. He rests the bottle down on the table to snoop and clean up whatever might have toppled over in the breeze.

“Damn charts knocked over,” are Adam’s last words as he sees the pa......................
Caroline Gerardo  copyright 2010

Monday, July 12, 2010

I am working on my edit list and finding myself frustrated.
I have to change the whole complete novel all 389 pages from present tense first person to subjective tense with flash backs. I divided the Chapters on Screenwriter into index cards and am following the story line as scenes rather than a story with first chapter having murder number one in past tense without knowing who the killer is then telling the story from the main female character's point of view from beginning to end in present tense. The language and timing of the tension doesn't work as well with the tense I chose ( so I am told) so on a journey to rewrite and correct it all. I had trouble on day 19 when I lost the first 6 chapters and only God knows which file folder I put them in. Now I am diligently labelling each folder and completing in order. There are some editing programs out there and I looked at paying for that or paying an english teacher to get me cleaned up. Advice welcome.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Writing on the Kitchen Table

I have been writing on a morning schedule now for nine years. I don't set the alarm, most days the light of sunrise reflects off the water. I hear the mourning dove calling her mate to get to work. She's not speaking to me, but the familiar sound makes me joyful.

I make coffee at 5:45 and the smell fills the downstairs. It's not the caffiene I crave, it's the smell of Peets' Major Dickenson's blend.

I am linking this blog to my more work related commerical blog with the intention that is this only about writing. I can compile the links to online short stories, poetry and exerpts of my novels.

I've gone the self publishing route and not certain this is the correct pathway as promoting one's own art form seem far far more difficult than working a job at a bank. I made some money ghost writing and I am not going to continue that avenue. I believe my work has a voice for my time. Avalon wanted me to rewrite "Bank" into a G rated story which is not my intention. I don't live that conventional of a life. Not that I am dazzlingly exciting but my
background, travels and experience aren't Disney stories.  So here I start first day. I hope to post my own writing, perhaps some submission guidelines and details on my own struggles for learning HTML and formatting for a variety of requirements, I look forward to input.