Latest Entries »

“Shut up and write.”
K.A. Laity

—–

Science Fiction & Fantasy Saturday is…a web ring of authors who post snippets of their work for comment. In reality, it’s a close-knit group of friends and colleagues working together to support and encourage one another and promote the science fiction and fantasy genres. I am just one author in the midst of awesome authors. To read other snippets, or learn how to join us, visit scififansat.blogspot.com!

The last five weeks I shared snippets from one of my short stories, Acts, published in The Glass Parachute. The response I received was phenomenal; I’m glad some of you enjoyed the snippets well enough to want to check out the book!

This week (and maybe successive weeks) I will be sharing snippets of a Work In Progress titled April 11, 1978 (tentative title). It’s actually a random date. When I was scrolling through a story, I thought I saw that date and decided to make it a focal point to a story, lol…

This is how the story begins (this is all early draft, remember that).

Marc stood in front of his bathroom mirror and stared at himself with a gaze that had no intention of release. His dimming blue eyes, his round nose, his graying brown hair that accentuated his receding hairline. He pushed in closer to perceive the wrinkles blossoming around the corners of his eyes.

Although he kept in great physical shape – he glanced at the toned arms protruding from his tank top – he was getting spiritually crushed from the deceptions and betrayals he doled out. Emotionally it was tough, but he pressed on because he had to make a living.

He noticed the bathroom door was cracked open, giving a slight view into the darkened bedroom. With a guided prod of his hand, he shut the door, and then opened the door to the vanity.

Most of the contents inside was storage for cleaning supplies. He purposely put an overabundance of extra products to dissuade any curious eyes.

Marc reached behind all of the packaging, pushed aside a sixty-four ounce bottle of hand soap, and retrieved a small, silver cylinder the size of a battery.

I hope you enjoyed this snippet! And be sure to check out other snippets by the other authors at scififansat.blogspot.com.

Advertisements

“Good writers indulge their audience; great writers know better.”
Tom Heehler

—–

Villipede Publications — the company that published the anthology where my short stories “Acts” & “For Zanna” can be found — has just recently opened villipede horror anthologysubmissions to a brand new anthology! They are accepting submissions for their horror anthology, currently titled Darkness ad Infinitum. The submission period is from April 15 – June 15, so you have just under two months to get a good story in. And just for your information, blood and guts splattering is not the focal point for this anthology. They want sophistication. Subtle, psychological horror. It can have violence but not needlessly.

But don’t let this blog post be your guide. Go to Villipede.com/Submissions and check out the complete list of guidelines and everything. I’m privileged to have worked with Matt Edginton for the first sci-fi anthology. I look forward to working with him again, although I doubt it will be by submitting anything to this anthology. I don’t write horror — psychological or otherwise. Then again, I haven’t exactly tried…

Secondly, Villipede has a brand new Featured Flash photo through April 30. They provide the original artwork, you submit the short piece of fiction to match! The winner receives a free copy of one of the books they’ve published. You can check that out here.

“I believe that, like most writers, my personality comes through in the fiction. So in that respect my writing can’t be like any other author’s really.
Paul Kane

—–

Daily Science Fiction has released another batch of stories this week! I must say, doing these reviews of each and every story has introduced me to a lot of writers whose work I find to be awesome! Before I started these reviews on my blog, I would read the story DSF sent out every now and again. Now that I’ve made it a point to read, review, and share the websites/blogs of each author, it’s been a blast! It’s an honor to read and review every single story that is sent to my inbox. Thanks, DSF!

April 8, 2013
Leaving Home
by Kurt Pankau (his website)
I don’t even truly understand why this story made me feel the way it did. It’s simple, succinct, and not drawn out. But I found myself so easily pulled into this story and empathizing. The story is set in a time where agents called “Eraser-Men” go about and protect the timeline. One day an agent shows up at Grace’s doorstep, who knows that someone in her past had been eliminated. She cannot remember who. But the agent asks to speak with her son, and that is when things get interesting. A good read. You can read Leaving Home here.

Jetsons RobotApril 9, 2013
Cleaning Lady
by J. Kyle Turner
The Lawsons hire a cleaning lady to clean their house, and by the early statement of, “It’s just so nice having a human touch around the house” you can conclude that the rest of the story following should be interesting. Evidently, many people use robots to clean houses, but this cleaning lady runs ads about how she does all the cleaning by hand. Well, this cleaning lady has a secret weapon.

Now, as entertaining and nicely constructed as this story was, when I was reading it, I was wondering what the purpose or the main point of the story could be. What was going to happen? Would the Lawsons find out and fire her? Or worse? I was anticipating some sort of outlandish and unexpected scuffle. It was hard to envision an ending because the plot didn’t have a conflict, and the characterization wasn’t totally there to make the cleaning lady’s internal conflict strong enough. I could have done without the last few lines which felt like the author telling the reader “and this is the moral of the story”. Whether that was the intent of the author or not (probably not) it is the way it came across to me. Cleaning Lady is still a good story though. You can check it out here.

April 10, 2013
Snake Sister
by Melissa Mead (her website)
Another Twisted Fairy Tale! And I have to say… I’m not sure what fairy tale this is rewritten from. Clearly one that has to do with a prince…? And one that has to do with snakes…? If anyone knows — and I’m SURE you do — feel free to tell me which fairy tale it’s derived from. With that said, Melissa Mead’s work is great. I can’t rave about this one simply because I don’t know what story is its foundation, but as a story on its own it’s written well and it’s humorous. You can read Snake Sister here.

April 11, 2013
Daughter of Mettle
by Aaron Damommio (his blog)
This is about a girl who has a dad who has superpowers. But with everything he does to save the world, he has broken promises to her time and time again. So, after her seventeenth birthday, she decides to take away his powers. It’s an interesting story. It grew on me, although I do think the second person voice in this piece wasn’t as up to par as it could’ve been. You can read Daughter of Mettle here.

HeartbeatApril 12, 2013
Heart of Joy
by Kate O’Connor (her blog)
It started a little rough, solely due to the fact that I had three brand new names I had to reread to see how to pronounce — Feon, Luscinia, and Carinae (which turned into Carina the next time mentioned). Once I hurdled those names (okay, maybe stumbled is the proper word) the story enraptured me. Sentences such as:

He lingered a minute, body swaying between feelings and words.

&

The swish of her clothing and the thump of her bare feet on the hard floor blended into a music of their own.

helped set the tempo to the story in a powerful way. The story focuses on a gentleman by the name of Feon who is the High Chancellor, and Luscinia is his lover who, politically, was not a smart choice to make. But Luscinia dances. Beautifully. But a gift to Feon from an ambassador threatens their relationship. The story is a retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Nightingale.” I actually have never read that, so I can’t comment on that, but I will say that the emotion put forth in Heart of Joy is just as beautiful as the dances Kate O’Connor describes. I could feel the emotion Luscinia’s performances had but I could also feel the mechanical movements of the machine. It is amazing what Kate O’Connor did with this story. Truly a gem in my book. You can read Heart of Joy here.

__________

To sign up for Daily Science Fiction’s mailing list, visit DailyScienceFiction.com and subscribe for free! Every weekday you’ll get a brand new story in your inbox (a week before it goes up online).

SFFS: Snippet #5 from “Acts”

“To encounter a fine book and have time to read it is a wonderful thing.”
Natalie Goldberg

—–

Science Fiction & Fantasy Saturday is…a web ring of authors who post snippets of their work for comment. In reality, it’s a close-knit group of friends and colleagues working together to support and encourage one another and promote the science fiction and fantasy genres. I am just one author in the midst of awesome authors. To read other snippets, or learn how to join us, visit scififansat.blogspot.com!

tgpHere is the final snippet from my short story, Acts, published in Villipede Publications‘ sci-fi anthology, The Glass Parachute (available to purchase at Amazon). Click the following links to read the first, second, third, and fourth snippets.

This final snippet is several pages after the previous snippet.

RECAP: Tammi and Westin are consorts, and they went to Jasen (Tammi’s ex-lover) and asked him to help them object to a Nobility Act that puts certain restrictions on couples who want to have children. Everyone’s social status is determined on that person’s adherence to the laws. Since Jasen is a spokesman for the “government,” he adheres to the Acts (laws) without question. Westin doesn’t think the right to have children should be decided by a law clause.

That is the surface information that leads to this next snippet…

Westin grabbed Jasen’s arm with one hand and then struck his wrist, forcing Jasen to drop the knife.

Jasen landed an uppercut to Westin’s jaw. Westin stumbled backwards but quickly rebounded and punched Jasen in the face. As Jasen recoiled, Westin picked up the knife, gripped Jasen’s neck and backed him up against a wall.

“You think you’ll get away with this?” Jasen muttered as he tried to release the hold on his neck. “The moment you leave, I can have Nobility Officers after you and Tammi.”

“No, you can’t. We’ve been in the wind for a while, and we’re good at not being found.” Westin tightened his grip and flaunted the knife.

I hope you enjoyed this snippet! And be sure to check out other snippets by the other authors at scififansat.blogspot.com.