Posts from the ‘fiction’ Category

Third Novel Wins Award

904b8-aaa-wwwThe Excerpt:

Watch for a new chapter of my serial novel soon!

Watch for a new chapter of my serial novel soon!

Claudia Barry owned Manhattan’s West 33rd Street.

She stayed close to the buildings, away from the crowds, aware of every face. Every movement got her attention. It was an old habit and hard to break. It had kept her alive. She took deliberate strides toward 8th Street.

The drizzle had stopped, the skies were still overcast, and the sidewalk wet. It would have been impossible for her to miss the action fifty feet ahead of her.

The Big News:

This week’s sample is the first eight sentences from A Year Without Killing (my third book.) It recently was selected as a finalist in the East Texas Writers Guild’s First Chapter Book Awards.

BLUE-FINALIST2015According to Roger Middleton, president of the Guild, “We received an overwhelming number of entries from around the world, including authors submitting from Australia, Great Britain, Canada, Cyprus, Italy, South Africa, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas.”

Each entry was judged by three different judges from a panel representing, editors, authors, educators, and avid book readers. An additional three judges were brought in to select winners from the finalists.

Read the entire first chapter of A Year Without Killing, HERE.

Share your work with us!

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.The  same link will take you to the work of dozens of talented writers. For a treat, please check out their work, too.

Many of the contributors to Weekend Writing Warriors alsoSundaySnip

participate in the Snippet Sunday group on FaceBook.

Skulls and Bones

Find us on FaceBook.

Find us on FaceBook.

The Eight Sentences:

Hula girls and a skull dagger.

Hula girls and a skull dagger.

Claudia asked, “What’s up with the choice of shirts?”
“The dagger bothers you?” asked Debert.
“I’m not sure…” she hesitated wondering what Debert was up to. “Is he mocking me—or is this some dark metaphor?” she asked herself.
Debert assumed a dignified frown, lowered his eyebrows and intoned, “You remember from your study of history, that in medieval times, before the age of printing, events were often documented with marks on the handles of knives.”
“Mmmmm…..that does ring a bell,” Claudia remembered, “and this shirt with a skull at the junction of the blade, handle, and guard?”
Debert smiled, “Well I have no idea how many skulls, or notches on your gun you might have, but I thought one would represent what you do in addition to all of them in toto.”

The Set Up:

In this scene from The Tourist Killer, Claudia is having breakfast with Mr. Debert at the Sandestin Hilton in Florida. His choice of attire becomes the subject of their conversation. And in the news, Claudia got a great 4 star review this past week. Check it out, HERE.

Got eight lines to share? 

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.The  same link will take you to the work of dozens of talented writers. For a treat, please check out their work, too.                                     

Many of the contributors to Weekend Writing Warriors also

participate in the Snippet Sunday group on Facebook.

Book Review: A Man for Kate by G.S.Bailey

Welcome to Goran Vale. A small (fictitious) town in New South Wales.

It isn’t far from Sydney and Melbourne.

It’s a long way from home—and farther from the truth than most folks find comfortable.

Author G.S. Bailey places readers right into the heart of town with vivid and detailed descriptions. We can close our eyes and see a little town reminiscent of Twin Peaks—without the picket fences.

A Man for Kate

A romance served with murder receives 4 of 5 stars.

Meet Kate.

She was left standing at the altar by one of the men in her life.

Early on, we meet them: Paul (her boss), Bobby (adopted brother), Ben (the friendly police officer), Stephen (her first love), and Lance (American insurance salesman). Will one of these candidates be the man for her?

One of them is “special” character. He’s the common denominator that links the major characters. He’s the glue that holds the story together.

Minor characters in Goran Vale are introduced and we learn that everyone seems to have secrets and several have skeletons in their closets (literally.)

Parallel plot lines follow Kate as she looks for the right man and Ben, the cop, who looks for the killer of poor little Melanie Rose.

Bailey does a superb job of weaving a page turner as we rush to learn which search is successful. Clues to the murder turn up when the shooting starts.

Which of the leading men will win Kate’s heart?

Will Kate and Ben find the same man? How do their paths cross en route to the story’s denouement?

A Man for Kate previously appeared as Remains of a Local Girl and Bailey does an efficient job of creating two female characters for whom either title would be eponymous.

A Man for Kate plays well as both a romance novel and a whodonnit. Such are the mysteries of love.

In the end, we leave Goran Vale secure in the knowledge that more books in the “Mystery Loves Romance” series are forthcoming.

Can you hear the Angelo Badalamenti soundtrack?

Book Review: Cynthia the Invincible by Amelia Grace Treader

In the year, 2342, Cynthia is pursued in “border space” by the Cataxi, an alien domain willing to destroy a planet to kill her.

Just as her space ship, driven by her onboard computer, “Chris,” attempts a jump to lightspeed, a shot from the Cataxi takes out the planet from which Cynthia et al just departed. The percussion from the explosion sends our foul-mouthed, video-gaming heroine back to nineteenth century England.  Cynthia the Invincible

Cynthia is more concerned about her video game than her real life fate. She passes off the possibility of prison with this remark to Chris, “Damn. I suppose prison is better than starving to death. Let me know when you pick up the guidance beam. I’ll be in the AR3 suite. I want to see if I can finally seduce Mr. Darcy. Take him away from that dreadful Elizabeth Bennett.”

In response, Chris asks, “That Jane Austen game, again? Why don’t you play something wholesome, like Battle for Mars or Kabul Shootout?”

Cynthia the invincible is the Marty McFly of the 21st Century with Chris instead of Doc Brown at her side.  Together they seek adventure, romance, and a little fun while their spaceship is repaired.

Author Amelia Grace Treader, in her fifth book, takes readers through the space time continuum as Major Tom meets Downton Abbey. We like the use of dialog to drive plot with a bare minimal scene-setting. We’ve been into the future with Dave and HAL and we’ve seen the past with Barry Lyndon. Treader allows readers to use their imagination rather than lengthy descriptions—and it works. We find it a refreshing diversion from the typical “dark and stormy night syndrome” often found in this genre. The challenge of juggling space exploration, time travel, and romance is adequately met by this author, who is, herself, a Southern Belle. Readers will be glad to know a sequel is in the works.

Will Cynthia find true love in the past?

Will she give her suitor reasons to love her?

Will she give readers reasons to care about her?

Will she be happy enough in 19th Century England to stay?

Just how old is Cynthia and will she age like Dick Clark?

Pick up a copy on Amazon and get the answers today.

The Connection–Weekend Writing Warriors

Image credit: Copyright 2014 Wayne Parris Photography, used with permission. Details of this beautiful photograph will be the subject of a future blog. Wayne’s image inspired my short story.

=====================================================================================

The Eight Sentences:

“We have too many generations of perfection,” Dr. Culpepper replied.

“How many generations of patients have you treated?” asked his assistant.

“Five. The span of years between each successive generation has gotten progressively shorter–the babies are smaller and our lives are requiring less and less physical activity. Next thing you know, we’ll have a generation of entities without a physical body. Nothing but a conscious being,” he paused, “a spirit.”

“I thought you were an atheist.”

“I am.”

The Back Story:

From my first short story in over forty years.

Genre: sci-fi (futuristic)

Dr. Culpepper practices pediatrics in the year 3905.

He has just seen his last patient of any kind and certainly the last pediatric patient. His speculation on the evolution of mankind to the point that no body would be necessary comes from an interview in Playboy by Arthur C. Clarke. Acting on the premise that such an event would  occur, I chose to write about the beginning of such an era. The Connection is about the first child born with no body.

Here are the links to the short story: Episode One  and Episode Two.

Make your own connection Here:904b8-aaa-www

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.The  same link will take you to the work of dozens of talented writers. For a treat, please check out their work, too.

Here’s the Facebook link for the Sunday Snippett group.  SundaySnip

A Busy Start for the New Year

On New Year’s Day, Chapter Eight of A Year Without Killing debuted HERE.

The next day, my regular Friday blog on Venture Galleries featured the debut of my first short story in over forty years.

The Connection was inspired by the featured photograph and is being presented in two episodes. This is the FIRST.

Then, on Saturday, Jan. 3, I resumed participation in Weekend Writing Warriors, a blog hop in which authors post eight sentence samples of their work (either published or a work in progress.)  My snippet this time was from AYWK and featured a scene featuring The League of Old Men. The snippet is HERE.

Finally, we closed out the weekend with Chapter Nine of AYWK. It opens with one of my favorite passages from the book.

My main character, Claudia Barry is writing in her journal about a dream from which she has just awoken:

The bullet was headed straight towards my eyes. Would it strike my brow just above my nose?

Bullet

Image credit: Caters News Agency

The markings in the lead from the rifling of the barrel made it easy to see the rotation.

Here comes death.

In ultra-slow motion.

Somehow, I was aware that I had fired the round myself from a hotel room across the street.

The Tourist Killer’s last eight sentences

AAA-WWW

Summer ShootThe Eight Sentences:

The shooter relaxed and watched the rain collect on the windshield as the wiper blades paused for a few seconds between cycles. First it was images, then text. It was like e-mails appearing on the screen of her computer but now they were appearing on the windshield right before her eyes. No time to read them as the wipers cleared them away with each wave. Always changing, more messages and no time to read nor savor them.Rain on wndshld

“Did my targets realize their own frailty, their vulnerability, their mortality? Were they able to adjust the length of time the blades of fate hesitate between each event?”
The light changed, the pace of the rain quickened and without a thought, her hand came up, her finger touched the lever, and the wipers went from intermittent to regular speed—with no pauses.

The Back story:

This week’s snippet features the last eight sentences of The Tourist Killer. The narrator once again refers to her as “the shooter,” rather than by name. How easy will it be for her to be Claudia for a year rather than “the shooter?”

The sequel, A Year Without Killing opens with Claudia walking towards her favorite Irish pub in Manhattan. The rain has gone and the sidewalk is wet.

What next?

This will be my last snippet until January. A Year Without Killing begins it’s “two chapters a week” serial run at AYearWithoutKilling- FINALVentureGalleries.com on Sunday, Dec. 7. Every spare moment I have between now and New Years will be spent working on future chapters.  My fourth book is in the planning stages and will be titled, Transfer the Dragon.

Hit us with your best shot!

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.The  same link will take you to the work of dozens of talented writers.

For a treat, please check out their work, too.

Here’s the Facebook link for the Sunday Snippett group.SundaySnip
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