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Books Comics Interview Stoicism

Stoicism and Comics

Interview with Kasey Pierce of Source Point Press

I recently had the pleasure to talk to Kasey about her passion for Stoicism and how it helped her both personally and in her career as a comic book writer and editor.

Q: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your work?

Absolutely! First I would like to thank you for this interview. This is truly an honor. I’m a writer from the Metro Detroit area and my prose horror novella, Pieces of Madness (Rocket ink Studios), gave me residency on the comic convention circuit in 2015. This book of short horror stories (about the insane, cultist, and paranormal) picked up a bit of a subterranean following.

Shortly after, I joined the ranks of Source Point Press and created the Norah comic series (illustrated by Sean Seal). I’m so grateful to say this hand-painted sci-fi noir was met with great reception, became film-optioned, and made me one of flagship creators of the company. Pieces of Madness saw a deluxe rerelease in 2018 and my Viking witch one-shot series, Seeress, was released in 2019 (illustrated by Jay Jacot). This year, we introduced the next four-issue arch to the Norah series, illustrated by Kelly O’Hara.

Up until this book, I was only familiar with the term “stoic” with a lowercase “s”; an adjective to describe someone as strong and silent. As I listened, I realized what was being said was reinforcing an overall perspective I’ve exercised in my own life.

However, a large part of my brand was built on inspiring fellow comic creators. I’ve presented my panel on direct selling in indie comics, Good Luck with That, at many shows in the US, Canada, and overseas. This talk gives insight into not only how to sell your work, but how to summarize and pitch it to both the con-goer and potential publisher. Part memoir, it also sheds light on many misconceptions new creators have coming into the industry.

Currently, I run editing company, Red Pen Media; offering editing, copywriting, and creative advising.

Read the rest of the interview on Medium.

Categories
Books Stoicism

Piensa como un emperador romano

I’m delighted to announce that How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius is now available in Spanish from the publisher Planeta.

Me complace anunciar que Cómo pensar como un emperador romano ya está disponible en español en la editorial Planeta.

ISBN 9786070767050.

Categories
Books Marcus Aurelius Stoicism

New Download: Marcus Aurelius Poster

I’m delighted to announce that the print quality version of the poster for my forthcoming graphic novel on the life and philosophy of Marcus Aurelius is now available. The artist Ze Nuno Fraga has created something you can print out and put on your wall, or you can use the web version as a background on your phone.

I said I’d put this online when we reached 100 Amazon reviews for How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius and we’re way past that now so here’s your poster! Thanks everyone.

You’ll need to download the print quality TIF using this link – it’s a large file.

You can preview the web version below. Don’t ask me loads of questions about the project, though, because it’s early days and so I can’t actually provide more details yet! (You’ll have to be patient.)

Thanks for your support,

Donald Robertson Signature
Marcus Aurelius Poster (Web Quality)
Web version of the poster by Ze Nuna Fraga.

Categories
Books Marcus Aurelius Stoicism

Translations of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor

I get a lot of enquiries from people asking “When is your book coming out in…?” So here’s the current list of translations. There may be more coming, though, this list is just how things stand at the moment.

The English edition of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius is currently available from Macmillan in hardback, ebook, and audiobook formats with the paperback scheduled for release in the US on 4th August 2020.

Now Available

Coming Soon

  • The Turkish translation will be available from Destek Publishing.
  • The Korean translation will be available from Golden Turtle.
  • The Croatian translation will be available from Planetopija.
  • The Romanian translation will be available from Seneca Iulius Annaeus Publishing House, part of Asociatia SNK
  • And other translations may become available over time…
Categories
Books Events Stoicism

Free Stoicism Talk in Athens

Title: “The Stoic Philosophy in Modern Times”

This will be a special panel event to launch Greek translations of Lessons in Stoicism by John Sellars and How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius by Donald Robertson, presented by IANOS books and the publisher Dioptra. Alkistis Agio, author of The Stoic CEO, will be hosting.

Donald Robertson, author and psychotherapist, and John Sellars, professor of philosophy at the university of London, will be discussing how ancient Stoic philosophy, which originated in Athens, can help you live a more fulfilling life today.

Everyone is welcome to attend free of charge, to learn more about Stoicism in modern life. The talks will be in English. No need to register, just come along.

Date/Time: Tuesday 8th October, 18:00.

Venue: IANOS books, Stadiou 24, Athina 105 64 (Map)

Cost: Entrance free of charge.

More info: Event listing on IANOS website.

Categories
Books Events Stoicism Uncategorized

Announcing: Stoicism Netherlands Discussion Group

We’re pleased to announce the creation of a new Facebook discussion group for people interested in Stoicism who are based in the Netherlands, or Flanders, or speak Dutch.

Join the Stoicism Netherlands Facebook Group

Donald Robertson will also be hosting a free “coffee and Stoicism” meeting on Friday 27th September at 1pm in the Vascobelo coffee shop, inside the Scheltema book store, in Amsterdam. Everyone is welcome…

Facebook Event Listing: Coffee and Stoicism in Amsterdam

Categories
Books Stoicism

Stoicism in the Netherlands

Hi everyone,

I’ve just arrived in Amsterdam, in the Netherlands, where I’ll be staying from 23rd to 28th September to promote the Dutch translation of my latest book on Stoicism, How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius or, as it’s known in Dutch, Leer Denken als een Romeinse Keizer. Afterwards, I’m travelling to Athens where I’ll be organizing Stoicon, the Modern Stoicism conference. However, I’ll also be in Belgium for a few days in November, where I’m speaking at the Night of the Freethinker festival in Ghent, on Saturday 9th November.

With the help of my Dutch publisher, Ten Have, I’ll be organizing some talks and interviews, etc. On Friday 27th Sep, I’m planning a free talk about Stoicism in the evening, venue details to be confirmed shortly. However, there will definitely be an informal coffee and Stoicism meetup at the Vascobelo coffee shop in the Scheltema book store in Amsterdam, at 1pm on Friday 27th — everyone is welcome. (See our Facebook event page and click “going” to help us track numbers.)

There’s already been an article with seven tips from Marcus Aurelius, based on the book, in the Algemeen Dagblad newspaper. I recently also did an interview about Stoicism with Stefanie Van den Broeck for the Belgian news magazine Knack. While in Amsterdam, I’ll also be doing interviews with the newspaper NRC and the Belgian management magazine MT. I’m also booked as a guest on the Living without Stress with Patrick Kicken.

I recently republished an article I wrote about the Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza, comparing the therapeutic aspect of his philosophy to modern cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT). Although Spinoza didn’t acknowledge his own debt to Stoicism, Leibniz described him as pioneering “the sect of the new Stoics”, and the similarities between Spinozism and Stoicism are obvious to most readers. Indeed, I opened How to Think Like a Roman Emperor with the following quote:

I thus perceived that I was in a state of great peril, and I compelled myself to seek with all my strength for a remedy, however uncertain it might be; as a sick man struggling with a deadly disease, when he sees that death will surely be upon him […] is compelled to seek such a remedy with all his strength, inasmuch as his whole hope lies therein. (Spinoza, De Intellectus Emendatione, 4–5)

Aaron T. Beck, quoted Spinoza, alongside the Stoics, in Cognitive Therapy & the Emotional Disorders (1976), the very first book on his cognitive therapy approach:

I saw that all the things I feared, and which feared me had nothing good or bad in them save insofar as the mind was affected by them. (Spinoza, quoted in Beck, 1976:156)

I’m therefore looking forward to visiting the monument to Spinoza in Amsterdam, and also taking a trip to the house where he lived, in Rijnsburg, which is now a museum dedicated to his life and philosophy.

Please feel free to get in touch if you’re based in or near Amsterdam. I know there are quite a variety of people interested in Stoicism in the Netherlands already. For example, a few years ago a group of students at Hermann Wesselink College in Amstelveen participated in Stoic Week, and wrote about the experience. There’s also an Amsterdam Stoics Meetup group, if you’re interested.

Regards,

Donald Robertson Signature
Categories
Books Philosophy of CBT Stoicism

Revised Second Edition: The Philosophy of Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy

I’m pleased to announce that in December 2019, Routledge will be publishing the revised second edition of my 2010 book The Philosophy of Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT): Stoic Philosophy as Rational and Cognitive Psychotherapy.

It will be available in both hardback (ISBN 9780367219871) and paperback (ISBN 9780367219147) formats. The content has been thoroughly revised, with hundreds of small changes, and a whole new chapter, discussing the comparison between Stoicism and modern third-wave cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT). You can order it online from Routledge, The Book Depository, Amazon, and all other good bookstores. See also Google Books and Goodreads for reviews and other information.

Table of Contents

  • Foreword to First Edition by Prof. Stephen Palmer
  • Introduction: Philosophy & Psychotherapy
  • Part I: Philosophy & Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
  • The “Philosophical Origins” of CBT
  • The Beginning of Modern Cognitive Therapy
  • A Brief History of Philosophical Therapy
  • Stoic Philosophy & Psychology
  • Rational Emotion in Stoicism & CBT
  • Stoicism & Ellis’ Rational Therapy (REBT)
  • Part II: The Stoic Armamentarium
  • Contemplation of the Ideal Sage
  • Stoic Mindfulness of the “Here & Now”
  • Self-Analysis & Disputation
  • Autosuggestion, Premeditation, & Retrospection
  • Premeditatio Malorum & Mental Rehearsal
  • Stoic Fatalism, Determinism & Acceptance
  • The View from Above & Stoic Metaphysics
  • Stoicism and the Third-Wave
  • Conclusion: Fate Guides the Willing
  • Appendix 1: An Example Stoic Therapeutic Regime
  • Appendix 2: The View from Above Script

Categories
Books Stoicism

Book Summary: How to Think Like a Roman Emperor

How to Think Like a Roman Emperor

How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius (2019) is published by St. Martin’s Press in hardback, ebook, and audiobook formats. This is a brief summary of the contents.

The introduction explains how I came to write the book, drawing on my background in academic philosophy and training as a cognitive-behavioural psychotherapist, after nearly twenty years of writing and teaching Stoicism. It discusses the modern growth of interest in Stoicism, including the activities of the Modern Stoicism organization. It also explains how the idea for the book came from my experience of telling my young daughter, Poppy, stories about ancient philosophy.

1. The Dead Emperor

The first chapter opens with the death of Marcus Aurelius. I wanted to start the book with something dramatic. Each chapter begins with a story about some major event in Marcus’ life, based on the information we have from the various Roman histories of his reign.

In most of the chapters that leads into a discussion of Stoic philosophy and psychology and the concepts and techniques he used to cope with various problems such as anger, anxiety, pain, and so on. Then there’s a detailed discussion of how Stoic techniques can actually be applied today, drawing on my experience as a cognitive-behavioural therapist and the relevant scientific research. However, the first chapter is slightly different because after describing the events surrounding Marcus’ death in some detail, it proceeds to give the reader a short introduction to Stoic philosophy.

The story of Stoicism begins with Zeno of Citium, the founder of the school, and so you’ll be introduced to various anecdotes about him and other famous Stoics. Then we focus on what the Stoics actually believed: the core doctrines of the philosophy followed by Marcus throughout his entire adult life. And we’ll address some common misconceptions about Stoicism, such as the idea that Stoics were unemotional or joyless, which is false. I tried to keep the explanation of Stoicism in this chapter as simple as possible but after reading it you should have a pretty clear idea of who the Stoics were and what they believed. Then you’ll be well prepared to begin delving into the application of Stoicism to different areas of life. For example, in the next chapter we’ll be looking at how Stoics used language and in subsequent chapters you’ll learn how they overcame unhealthy desires and bad habits, conquered anxiety, managed anger, coped with pain and illness, came to terms with loss, and even faced their own mortality.

Read the rest of this article on Medium…

Categories
Books Marcus Aurelius Stoicism

How to Think Like a Roman Emperor on Amazon

When my latest book How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius reaches 100 reviews on Amazon, I’m going to release a special infographic depicting the reign of Marcus Aurelius.