Posts tagged ‘claudia barry’

The Tourist Killer’s last eight sentences

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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.

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A Cloudy Sunset

Sunset-3677

A sunset made more beautiful by clouds. Cape Cod 2014

The Eight Sentences:

[NOTE: Outrageous punctuation in effect to trim this down to 8 sentences from nineteen!]

“You remember what I told you about sunsets, don’t you?” Lilly had asked.
“Yes, ma’am, I do, I’ll never forget it,” Claudia replied.

“Well, Dr. Thibaut’s passing was a beautiful clear sunset, no clouds to be seen, but a beautiful afterglow,” Lillie put her coffee cup on the table, raised her glasses and wiped her eyes with the ever-present white lace handkerchief.
Claudia thought a moment and at the risk of sounding like a challenge, pressed ahead with her question, “Do you think that people can have a cloudy life — one that would have beautiful clouds at sunset, but, aaah, still have had troubles?”

Joe Btfsplk

“Honey, no life goes by without problems–we all have our clouds. Remember that man in Lil’ Abner?” They shared a laugh and Lilly continued, “I’m sure Dr. Thibaut had his concerns, but they would have been those wispy little clouds that the wind carries away with ease. Sure wouldn’t have been anything like a mushroom cloud,” she winked at Claudia, reached out, and hugged her tight.

The Back Story:

The late Dr. Thibaut had been Claudia’s adviser/supervisor in her quest for a master’s degree. Claudia had visited his residence often enough to get acquainted with “Miss Lil,” his housekeeper. In this scene, they discuss Dr. Thibaut’s life and Claudia finds a moment for introspection with an analogy involving clouds and sunsets.

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Claudia Meets Norman Bates

Chelsea Hotel

The Chelsea Hotel New York City

The Eight Sentences:

The Big Apple was abuzz with more than the usual summer vacation crowds in June of 1976. Claudia Barry walked up to the front desk at the Chelsea Hotel in New York City.

“May I help you?” the slender attendant asked. He was tall and thin and had an uncanny resemblance to Anthony Perkins.
Claudia thought to herself, “God, I hope his name isn’t Bates.”Tony Perkins
“I have reservations.”
They completed the paperwork and Norman gave her the key to her room. As she was turning to go to the elevator, he said, “Oh, Miss Berry.”
“It’s ‘Barry.’ Yes? What is it?”
“I almost forgot. There’s a message for you. It came in a few hours before you arrived.”

The Set Up:

Claudia had been on the train from Boston for over four hours. New York City was crowded with the usual summer vacationers multiplied this year by those arriving early in anticipation of the Bicentennial Celebration in a few weeks. It was a great time for her to be in town. She could disappear with ease in the throng.

The morning after she arrived began a personal challenge. She had two self-assignments. First, she wanted to infiltrate the wait staff of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, and for at least a few hours, become one of them — as a male. It was important for her thesis to show, how using deception, timing, and disguise, she could move in close to important people in spite of security. Second, her next goal would be to disappear from the premises undetected. Her effective use of group dynamics would be put to the test. She’d have to rely on an unplanned diversion to occur — unless she could come up with something on the spur of the minute.

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Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.904b8-aaa-www

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A Master’s Degree in Group Dynamics

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The Eight Sentences:

Dr. Thibaut, “Like I said earlier, this project has made me work more than usual on a candidate’s masters. Where did you find out about the work of Bandler and Grinder?”

Claudia answered, “I met a [Dale Carnegie] instructor trainer from California and he told me about their work. What they[ Bandler and Grinder] do involves therapy using a person’s choice of words and body language so it’s closely associated with group dynamics. Sometimes, the group only has two people. He’s been a great help with locating resources. Have you ever noticed that I never sit directly in front of you? If you’re somewhat to my right, you are more likely to agree with me. He taught me that — and introduced me to the study of group dynamics.”

The Back Story:FrogsPrinces

This part of Claudia’s past is autobiographical for me. I taught and sold Dale Carnegie Courses for several years in the mid 1980’s. A fine introduction to NLP is Frog’s Into Princes by Bandler and Grinder. I recommend it for anyone interested in pursuing the topic.

A related snippet prompted this blog article about Claudia’s master thesis: “What the Assassin Already Knows.”

I’ve been a member since the beginning — over two years ago.

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Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.

The  same link will take you to the work of
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For a treat, please check out their work, too.
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The Summer of ’65

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The Eight Sentences:

Claudia had been approved to work all summer as a volunteer at the main branch of the Boone County library. Her goal was to learn to use the library’s resources to do research. By September, she had become proficient with the Dewey Decimal System, the Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature and the microfiche device.

1952, the year Claudia avenged her father’s death. Her victim was a corrupt policeman from the Crescent City.

In late August of the following summer, the head librarian, Mrs. Laird, came to the table where Claudia was working and asked, “After two summers of research, have you found what you were looking for?”
Claudia smiled and told a convincing lie, “I wasn’t looking for anything in particular, but I have learned a lot about genealogy.”
The librarian did not see the article Claudia had been reading from a 1952 New Orleans Times-Picayune. The headline read, “Mid-westerner killed in Garden District drug raid.” Claudia had jotted down the name of the officer responsible — it was Emile Duplessis.

The Set Up:

Claudia was raised by her grandfather due in part to the loss of her father when he was young.

Too young.

He died at the hands of a corrupt cop in New Orleans.

Claudia began to plan her vengeance at an early age by learning to use the library and do research

the old fashioned way, long before the internet. See this snippet for 8 lines about her revenge.

 

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If you’ve got eight sentences (creative punctuation is fine) of a work in progress or a previously

published work, we’d love to see them. Here’s the link for Weekend Writing Warriors and more

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The Frenchman

The Eight Sentences:

DebonairIn47-sml

Biloxi Beach, Mississipi, circa 1947 This man is my mental image of Mr. Debert.

“Yes and it’s nice to meet someone who knows French, you never know these days.”
“I spent several years in the Deep South — Louisiana, they speak a little French down there.”
“I know,” his voice was a rich baritone, almost bass, soft yet confident — and so masculine — he could have been the man of her dreams.
“How would you know that?”, she asked.
“I’ve followed you for several years now,” Debert said, “It isn’t easy to keep track of your movements, but then you try so hard.” He could see that she was becoming uneasy with that revelation, “Don’t worry, I won’t tell.”
“I like your voice,” she commented, “You seem mysterious and, at the same time, charming.”
There was a twinkle in his eye, and he smiled again.

The Back Story:

There were two men in the life of Claudia Barry that had earned her respect and trust. The older of the two had been around for years, although they had not had the opportunity for much conversation since a lunch meeting in New Jersey in the fall of 1976. It had always been an occasional fleeting glance. Then one icy day in January of 1999, Claudia was dining alone at her favorite Irish pub, the Tir na nOg in downtown Manhattan, across from Penn Station when he walked up to her table. The snippet above comes from their conversation.

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Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.
The  same link will take you to the work of
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Claudia Barry is “The Tourist Killer”

The Eight Sentences:

Summer Shoot“You know my history and accomplishments. Not many shooters — regardless of sex — have the resume I’ve acquired and my vision is remarkable for any human. When I chose this career, it was obvious that I would never be in the limelight. I’ll be happy to be just as anonymous as you.” Claudia had resigned herself to anonymity even before the choice of professions. She had taken herself out of the fight for women’s rights with the selection of careers, because she couldn’t attract attention to herself advocating any issue publicly and then hope to reach the upper echelons of her craft. She could, and did, find ways to make financial contributions to the cause. After her first few jobs, she had stashed away enough funds to live happily ever after when and — if she ever retired.

The Set Up:

AYearWithoutKilling- FINAL My third novel, A Year Without Killing, will debut in December on my publisher’s site as a serial. One chapter at a time will be presented twice a week.

November will see a big promotion for The Tourist Killer to build interest in the sequel. In conjunction with these events, my snippets will be excerpts from The Tourist Killer’s flashbacks. Each of the seven parts of the book begins with a flashback into Claudia’s past. Today’s selection is from the first flashback and comes from Claudia’s meeting with the one who recruited her into the profession.

Calling all writers:

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors.
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Take out the papers and the trash!

The Eight Sentences:

Claudia replied with a note of authority, “Your phone calls put you into the same light as the person who squeezed the trigger. Your finger did the damage before the cross hairs were set and the shooter probably never realized when the round was fired.”

Woman n Trash

Claudia is a bit older and blonde, although she IS a master of disguise… (I love this image though!)

“You’re into Zen aren’t you? So ‘into the moment’ you don’t realize the target is falling and it’s because of you,”

“Does it bother you so much you want revenge?” Claudia asked.

“I don’t consider solving a problem for the world as being revenge,” answered Star. “How do you view your work?”

“Sometimes I’m not sure if  I’m a do-gooder ridding society of undesirables or just a psychopath taking out the trash.”

The Set Up:

Claudia met someone she did not expect to meet (Star Braun.) Their encounter was the subject of a previous Sunday Snippet and can be found HERE. This week’s eight sentences are from the tete a tete the two had after they both survived their initial meeting. Star has just confessed that she had made phone calls to engage Claudia’s services and now has regrets.

NOTE: My confession is….I got that last line, Claudia’s comment about taking out the trash from one of the reviews of my book. It was in the Seattle Post Intelligencer.

Open Call for Writers:

Attention all writers, published or not.

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Want some feedback on your work, eight sentences at a time?

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Book trailer on a budget

My third book, A Year Without Killing, will debut in December on my publisher’s site. It will be presented as a serial, one chapter at a time, twice a week. Since it is the sequel to my first book, The Tourist Killer, the month of November will see extensive promotions for both.

A new web site called, The Books Machine, is offering The Tourist Killer for free to readers who agree to review it. Their site hosts hundreds of books by great authors and we’re pleased to have ours among them. The folks over at The Books Machine asked for a video trailer less than one minute, so here is what we produced:

Here’s how this trailer was made for less than $150.00.

1. I shot the video myself. It only required 5,283 takes.(Just kidding.)

2. I selected the music from a royalty free website: Incompetech.com.  They’re great and have a wide variety of selections.

3. Once the camera work was done, I mailed the SD card to my friend and videographer, Art Hoffman. He added the titles and music and VOILA!  Art does great work and has been involved with all my book trailers. Authors can contact him via his web site HERE for a free consultation and estimated production costs. NOTE: Including three days of mail time, it took Art and me only seven days to get this video live on YouTube.

Remember, there’s plenty of time to enjoy The Tourist Killer before the sequel begins and now’s the time to start your Christmas shopping.

“We need a bit more control.”

The Eight Sentences:

__________________                                                                                         Scotch

Dahl returned his crystal tumbler to its coaster on the drop leaf table.

His hand moved with the precision of an artist painting eyebrows one hair at a time.

He leaned into the light and his guest could see that Dahl’s expression had changed — his eyebrows had lowered. The lips were pursed and thin. The corners of his mouth were pulled back into his cheeks but he wasn’t smiling.

Unnerving seconds seemed to take minutes to pass. Remington’s palms became soaked with sweat. Dahl spoke, “You have always given me the impression that control of this man was unquestionable.”

The Back Story:

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This week’s snippet in a continuation of the meeting in last week’s, between the mysterious Mr. Dahl and his guest, a fellow member of the secret organization who controls the world’s leaders, Mr. Remington.

Open call for writers:

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Join us here at Weekend Writing WarriorsAAA-WWW

The  same link will take you to the work of
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For a treat, please check out their work, too.
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