Posts tagged ‘fiction’


Have you ever made a mistake and said, “I’m only human?”
Being a writer of science fiction, my mind dwelled on the phrase.

Who knows why?

Of course at this point I let my imagination take over, conquering rational thought. I pictured an expedition to a distant planet much like ours. They landed and found no occupants. After months of searching one of the team found a document explaining the demise of the civilization. “We were a race of perfection. No mistakes were ever made. Eventually, we die of boredom.

June 13, 2018 at 11:02 pm 2 comments


My short story, He Flew Away, has just been accepted by Cemetery Moon.

If you are familiar with the invasion of stink bugs you might enjoy this story. I’ll let you know when it is available and how to get a copy.

January 8, 2017 at 12:00 am 6 comments


This piece is a sample of upcoming posts to this blog.

The following is a list of websites to help writers find markets and agents.  In the future I will discuss each site in more detail, but I thought I would offer this piece for writers to explore these sites, if they want, on their own.

First, I am sad to say that one of my favorite sites to explore the validity of markets and agents no longer exists.  The site is Preditors & Editors, a site I have looked to over the years for their opinion about markets and agents.  They will be sorely missed.

Now let’s deal with markets.

To my mind, Duotrope is the go-to site for seeking markets for fiction, non-fiction and poetry.  Once free, it now charges 50$ a year to use it.  Although there are some that argue about the fee, I think, for the service they provide, it is well worth the cost.  This site is a fantastic search-engine to find markets specific to your work.

Here is the site:


Here is a site to find markets for science fiction and more.  I have yet to become acquainted with it, but I will before I report on it.


Now for agents.

In my opinion, this is the site to first visit when seeking an agent.  The site is for the Association of Writers Representative.  You can search the site for your specific genre and be connected to the agent’s site.  You should never have to pay an agent to read your work.  With the agents associated with this site, you never will.  They have taken a pledge of honesty.

Here is the site:


Next is a site devoted to the writer to query other writers about their experience with publishers and

agents.  Great place to check on honesty.

Here is the site:


 Finally, here is a site to use to see an agents background.  I will discuss this site in greater detail in a later post.

Here is the site:


I hope this helps my fellow writers on their journey to publication.  As promised, a more extensive look at each site will follow.  I want to help my fellow writers to be where they want to be.  



October 19, 2016 at 8:55 pm Leave a comment


Why do you write?

If you’re young, it’s to begin and establish a career, and along the way, perhaps make a living.  If you are young this article may not interest you for it’s coming from a different place in life.  The place is old age, but the need, perhaps not the reason remains the same.   But then again, you will not be young forever.

My first and only novel published thus far appeared while I entered my sixties.  Now, at the ass-end of that decade, when maturity infiltrates my brain, I still have a need to write as demonstrated in these mumblings.  Do I enjoy it?  Hell no!

I should not be working now.  I should be enjoying ‘the golden years’.  But my personality has always had a strange quirk, the need to accomplish something meaningful.  This disease began while I was a teen and has pursued me ever since.  Someday soon I may write of how this change to my personality began.

But for now, to the point of this article.

At the end of last year I receive an email from Books To Go Now, a publisher of e-stories telling me I had made 16 cents for the year.  This notification brought me joy in a year of a publishing drought.  I don’t know and will never meet the person who put down money to read my work.

In my mind, my friends, that is what it is all about.  Not fame or fortune which is rightfully sought by the young, but appreciation of our efforts in writing.  The bottom line is that appreciation and recognition, no matter how minimal of your work is important.  It means someone finds your work worthy of buying.  The buying is not the important part, the desire to read your work is.

That is why I write, and perhaps your reason too.

May 28, 2016 at 9:27 pm 4 comments


I just received this email from Google.  I have no idea of it,s importance, or whether I’m being ripped off ( which happens these days, but has always been the practice of a certain element of society, i.e., losers).

I’m also including the sit they reference.

To be honest, I would prefer you purchase my story from Melange Books.  I make money, and more in important, my publisher makes money.

As a side note, I occasionally check my name on Google. It’s not an ego thing, I just want an update on what of my work has been published. Interestingly, I did discover one of my stories publish.  That knowledge was new to me.  I also found that the first two chapters of Elmo’s Sojourn has been published in China. I waited for the money from millions of sales to roll in.  Of course, I knew that China has little use for our copyrights, but the next time I visit the Orient, I expect a huge outflowing of love.

In spite of my age, I still dream.


March 31, 2016 at 10:25 pm Leave a comment


Those of you who follow this blog will remember, in the past, I have expressed negative opinions on George R.R. Martin’s series, The Game of Thrones.  I felt, and still do, that the novels were overwritten.  If they were shortened, the story would move along at a much interesting pace.  In my opinion, the description of the character’s clothes and other details were far beyond necessary.  While talking with a friend, I found that he also had a problem reading these novels, and had an interesting observation.  He commented that the novels were really screenplays, providing details needed more for a visual representation of the story than what the novel required.

These are opinions of the author’s works of fantasy.  Now I would I would like to express my limited exposure to the Martin’s science fiction.

Due to a local library’s overflow of books, I inherited a book of Martin’s science fiction work published by TOR in 1985, with the individual stories first published during the 1970’s.  The first and best story, Nightflyers, was a read I highly recommend.  All of the stories making up this anthology are worthy of a lover of science fiction’s attention.

From reading this the brief amount of Martin’s science fiction, I think his writing in this genre is superb and definitely plan to read more of his efforts, if I can find them.  I found the stories in Nightflyers to progress at a rapid pace and entertaining.

My opinion of this author has suffered a turnaround.  This is the fault of forming an opinion until all the facts are known.

March 29, 2016 at 9:00 pm 4 comments


The other day I was getting my seasonal haircut, when I began discussing books with my barber and authors she enjoyed.  During our conversation she mentioned The Giver.  I have read this book and the books concept remains a sore point for me.  I found it lacking in belief, even for fiction.

I know who am I, a totally unknown writer, and who am I to detract from a classic, but here it goes.

I had no problem with most of the story until the fact was revealed in the warped world of The Giver, all you needed to do is cross a bridge over a river and enter the world of normality.  Salvation was just on the other side of this bridge, yet no one dared cross it.  I find that unexplainable.  Perhaps my readers can tell me how my thinking is wrong.  My barber said they did not cross the bridge because they had been brainwashed.  I feel it should have taken a lobotomy.

I shall now boldly go where no one in their right mind has gone.

I shall suggest an alternate ending to the novel.  I would have preferred to see the novel take this turn.  On the other side of the bridge there exists a sinister forest constantly cloaked in darkness.  In this forest reside malevolent beasts, some part human, who kill and devour all foreign life they find.  The journey through this forest would be dangerous beyond belief, but I feel some barrier must exist for the souls inhabiting the land of the Giver, to overcome.

Beyond this forest is another bridge over another river which these monsters of the forest dare not cross.  Beyond this bridge lies a normal society.  Those who risk the forest will find a fulfilled life.

That’s how I would have ended the story.


March 9, 2016 at 9:48 pm 1 comment


This Japanese author writes the type of story I love to read.  His tales describe a mundane Japanese life, but include an element of fantasy and unreality.

I have read a great deal of his work, beginning with Kafka on the Shore, then journeying into his beyond and past works; a career with efforts I have never found disappointing.  Wind/Pinball were his first attempt at writing.  If only I could have reached this level in my first attempt, or for that matter my last.  I feel there is something that exists in writing which defies explanation.  These stories are a prime example.

Please read this work.  For if you are a first-time Murakami reader you will become addicted to his style.  If you are already an addict to his work, you will see the beginning of a voice destined for greatness.

February 25, 2016 at 9:25 pm Leave a comment


As promised with my piece about The War of the Worlds, a romance would follow.

Here it is and I hope you pursue this haunting story.

The movie follows a starving artist, played by Joseph Cotton, during the Depression struggling to survive in New York.  An art dealer, played by Ethyl Barrymore, recognizes that he has talented and buys some of his paintings.  Then he meets Jennie, played by Jennifer Jones.  The book, written by Robert Nathan in 1940 and made into the movie, Portrait of Jennie, in 1948 is well worth viewing.  Nathan also wrote The Bishop’s Wife in 1928, made into a movie twice, beginning in 1947.

Now back to Jennie.

This has to be one of the most hauntingly beautiful movies ever made.  When Jennie is a child she and the artist first meet.  As the story progresses, Jennie rapidly matures.  Finally the artist paints her and that portrait becomes the highpoint of his career.  Jennie and the artist become an eternal love.  Jennie is the most haunting character I have ever seen.  Please watch this movie, sometime offered on TCM, if you have a chance.

During my last viewing I looked for the author’s name which was Robert Nathan.  Nathan, born in 1894 and died in 1984 wrote many novels, along works in other genre as we all do, but I feel Portrait of Jennie is exceptional.  I recently purchased to book and found, for the most part, the movie closely followed the book.

If you are a romantic, such as this author even though I write horror and science fiction, watch the movie when you have an opportunity.  And read the book and be mesmerized.

As a side note, I want to mention the enjoyment and importance I find in bringing to light past authors who are forgotten, unknown authors making a contribution to their art but whose name has been lost to time.



February 19, 2016 at 9:53 pm 2 comments


Happy Valentine’s Day.  Here’s my present; a free story.



A VALENTINE’S GIFT                                 



Jim Reed sat in a desolate park in a seedy section of the city and pulled the collar of his badly worn coat up as the North wind howled, he sipped from the bottle concealed in the brown paper bag and, with each sip, a grimace spread across his face while momentary warmth filled his empty belly.

“That god damned day is coming,” he thought.  He did not have a calendar for a calendar needed a wall on which to hang and his watch was gone, hocked long ago.  Jim kept track of the date and headlines the world produced from the newspaper machines along the sidewalk.                          

He drank rapidly; trying to prevent his mind from wandering to the day he lost his future, his purpose, that Valentine’s Day five years ago.  But he could not prevent his numbed mind from reviewing his life and recalling the day his reason for being was erased.

                                              * * *

While in college, Jim developed a drinking problem, and it lingered after graduation.  He found a job as an accountant, worked hard during the day and drank hard during the night.

A friend from work wanted to fix Jim up with a girl.  A date was arranged, a Dutch-treat dinner.  Jim arrived at the Italian restaurant early, sat at the bar drinking red wine when a stunning woman with long black hair walked in searching for someone.  She approached Jim and said, “I’m Debbie Wilson, could you be Jim Reed?”

Jim could not believe that this woman was his blind date.  He gulped down his wine, took her hand, and headed for the restaurant area.  He drank less than he usually did on a blind date and just enjoyed talking to Debbie.  Before he knew it, they had spent two hours over dinner, and he was sober.  He wanted to pay for dinner but Debbie demanded to pay her own way.  She smiled and said, “Next time you can treat.”  This brought a grin to Jim’s face.  Debbie paid her part of the bill, and as the cashier placed the change in her hand, Debbie exclaimed, “What’s this?”  She looked down at the dirty white penny in her hand.

“That’s a steel penny,” Jim explained.  “One year, during World War II, pennies were made of a lead composite in order to save copper in order to make shell castings.”

Debbie’s eyes brightened as she said, “This is going to be my lucky penny and always remind me of this night.”

Their relationship grew into love, and six months later they were married.  They bought a small house and soon Debbie was pregnant.  Jim’s life had a hope he had never imagined as he watched Debbie grow with their child.

They found a hospital providing a room for natural birth, but had the facilities to cope with any problems that might occur.  One day, as Debbie was preparing a special dinner to celebrate a special day, her water broke.  Jim rushed her to the hospital thinking, “By the time this Valentine’s Day is over, I’ll have two loves, not one.”

After they entered the hospital, a nurse took Debbie’s blood pressure and immediately had her rushed to the emergency room.  Debbie’s eyes reflected the fear Jim felt as he sat at her bedside.  When Debbie began to convulse, Jim was escorted to the waiting room.

Hours later their obstetrician entered the waiting room and sat next to Jim.  The doctor’s eyes never left the floor.  In a soft voice he told Jim, “I’m sorry but your wife is gone, we lost the baby girl too.  If you will come with me, I’ll take you to your wife.”

Jim felt horror, shock and helplessness all at once.  On shaky legs he followed the doctor and soon found himself standing next to a bed and staring down at Debbie’s pretty face.  She seemed so much at peace while Jim was in such torment.

The next few days were a blur; Jim drank himself into numbness while friends and family expressed their regrets.  Jim stayed numb for five years, never cried over his loss, keeping the grief tied up inside.  He stayed numb as he was fired and eventually lost his house.  He had been homeless for two years now and just didn’t give a damn about anyone or anything.

                                                * * *

Jim left the park and made his way into the city.  He mumbled, “That god damned day is here,” as he sat on the grate of an office building immersed in the steam, trying to stay warm.  The hour was late and the street strangely deserted.  Steam created an odd glow around the streetlamps. Through the mist, a small girl approached and stood before him.

“I’d like to help you mister,” she said.

Jim yelled, “Get the hell away from me,” but the girl wouldn’t budge.  She just stood before Jim as her eyes filled with tears.

 “I’d like to help you mister,” she repeated as she placed a small cloth sack before Jim.  As she turned to leave she said something strange, “We love you.”

Jim watched through the mist as the girl departed; saw the tall figure of a woman waiting in the distance for the child.  The child stood next to the woman and they joined hands as they looked back, and then melted into the mist.

Jim sat there, drinking from his bag and lifted the small cloth sack.  He opened it and spilled its contents into his hand.  He sat there looking at the single dirty white penny.  He lifted the paper bag to his lips, and then tossed it away as tears coursed his face.



                                              THE END


February 14, 2016 at 8:11 pm Leave a comment

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