Thank you for receiving these musings,
some philosophical, some mystical, some maybe even a-musing.
Hello, fellow readers and writers. You may remember the little MP3 video of a red jeep driving across a mesa in my last newsy missive. It's so perfect because that's exactly how I picture New Moon Mesa in my Sunset Canyon Series. The reference to the video read, "So, back into the canyon for Book Two, Cast in Stone, as Sammy Peel speeds toward the answers to his father's death in haunted Sunset Canyon."
I also mentioned that the long, dusty road pictured was a perfect metaphor for my writing experience. Long. Dusty. Parched. Lonely...Did I mention, long?
I'm sure Sammy feels the same way, searching for answers on New Moon Mesa. And dealing with the magic unleashed on the night of a particular new moon called The Ghost Moon.
Except he sees the end of the canyon ahead - the answers to all his questions shining before him at Sunrise Ridge. He tells us all to be patient.
The mystery, though it may be solved, might only deliver a solution unfathomable. This is, after all, a supernatural Sci-Fi story. :-) With lots of romance, let's not forget.
You'll find an excerpt below from Book Two with Sam and Tobi.
In a cave.
In mysterious circumstances.
Did I say romance?
Well, on to the News Flashes (this won't take long)
The usual stuff. I had a great time at the Oakhurst Library for a panel discussion and book signing. The discussion was fun. My part was on self-editing. I'm pretty good at that - the self-editing thing. I do it continually while I write and then long after the book is published. So, I know what I'm talking about. Because it never stops - the self-editing thing. One is never satisfied. There is always something to tweak.
I hope I didn't discourage the audience too much, when I said, "You'll never be done. It's a curse, writing is. If you want to stay sane, don't even start. Don't type the first word. It'll be the wrong word. You'll change it - over and over. When the book is done, you'll come back and change it again. Back to what it was in the first place. For love of all that's sane! Save yourselves! Close those laptops! Run!"
Okay, I didn't say that. I was just thinking it.
The presentations were all good (I can't speak to what was on the minds of the other speakers) but Linda Lee Kane, Vicki Thomas, Sandra Masters, and Cora Ramos on the end (from left to right) provided a lot of great writerly information for the audience - too :-).
I don't know how many books were sold by the group. The only person at my table was a nice man who engaged me in a discussion about the healing properties of my Squash Blossom necklace. It was great finding out that he'd been on the Navajo Rez, where my necklace was made many years ago. But I couldn't help wishing he'd just buy my dang book. Oh well, I made a friend. Ha! But it was baum for my ego when Vivian (Hi Vivian! Wish I had a picture of you) greeted me and we talked a bit about Blood Stones - and how much she liked it. Blood Stones: http://amzn.to/2rdujrW
One other stop I made recently was at the Tulare Kings Writer's Group in Visalia. Again, I talked about self-editing (I stay with what works, you see.) They are a delightful group and I enjoyed spending time with them and being treated to lunch. And because they are all writers, I knew they had thoughts similar to those expressed above about editing ones manuscript. I could see it in their eyes. The Ugh! look.
That's Gloria Getman seated next to me. She is the one who invited me to come and talk. Gloria and I are members of Sisters in Crime, San Joaquin Valley Chapter. Hi, Gloria!
Next News Flash
A publication for me! I am one of the authors in the anthology that is going to beat the Guinness World Record for the most authors in a volume. My cozy horror, One Hellishly Hot Night, is included in the Horror and Fantasy section. Yahoo! When the book sells 1000 we will all, and that's 108 authors, will be awarded certificates stating that we beat the record. Kind of a crazy thing, but I got the paperback version and I am impressed with the level of writing. The stories are quite good.
If you can, please order a copy and help us get to the 1000 mark. It makes a good Christmas gift. Sort of like a phone book that you won't want to recycle. At least not for a long time. It'll take a while to read all those stories.
And isn't that wonderful? Lots of stories. Available at: http://amzn.to/2ggQXt8
Now, the excerpt. Oh, that's right, one last thing, I almost forgot.
This last month I and four other authors started an online writers' cooperative. www.speculativefictionwriters.com. The Landing Page reads:
This site is the creation of The Dark Rose Authors, a group of writers who write and read what intrigues them the most - stories that stretch the imagination, make the reader think, see a new perspective and perhaps send a chill up the spine late at night - hopefully all of the above.
Our website is a portal for writers and readers to find other authors, to engage new and current readers, and to locate resources that promote quality writing, successful publication, and promotion of mystery, fantasy, paranormal, horror and Sci-Fi genres.
So, please check out the site. Leave a comment on the Crossing Genres Page to share your thoughts about speculative fiction, sign up for our Newsletter, and most of all, consider submitting an edited short story or Flash Fiction. We are posting stories to engage readers and to promote authors who write intriguing fiction!!
Now the Excerpt!!
Cast in Stone, Book Two of the Sunset Canyon Series
Awatobi Racine is the Post Doc in charge of the dig site on New Moon Mesa. Sammy Peel, against his family's wishes because of the danger to anyone digging up the past on the mesa, as well as the family's history with "the curse of Sunset Canyon", has stubbornly joined the researchers on the mesa. He and Dr. Racine, "Tobi", find themselves in the middle of some mysterious magic as well as in the way of greedy prospectors out to find the treasure of The Lost Blood Stones Mine. How did they end up in this cave? What magic either tried to kill them, or saved them? (Release date: January, 2018)
Tobi Racine roused from a deep sleep on a hard, cold surface. In a half-stupor she stood, unsteady as if she tried to stand on the swaying deck of the boat instead of the rock solid floor of—what? She blinked several times to adjust her eyes to a reddish gloom and realized she was in a cave. “Oh, my god,” she said under her breath. “What is going on?”
At that moment the light brightened and she turned toward the source, a slice of blue sky through an arch of red sandstone. For a moment, the air around her glinted with flashes of color inside a network of tiny threads, or fibers like a spider’s web. She turned her head from side to side trying to understand what she saw, when a crushing pressure against her body forced all the air from her lungs. She hunched her shoulders and wrapped her arms around her middle in response to a wave of dizziness.
Her gaze snapped to that bit of sky outside. Just as she felt her legs weaken, and passing out became a real possibility, that glimpse of azure darkened as if a cloud moved into place. The pressure against her body lessened and threw her off-balance. She put her arms out to steady herself in its departing wake and gulped in a breath. The cave again took on hues of deep, murky red. Willing herself to claim her land legs, she brushed strands of hair from her face, took a step and almost tripped over something solid. She glanced down and gasped. There was a man lying at her feet. “Sammy!”
Tobi went to her knees and leaned over him. He was soaking wet and—was that blood? “Sam! Oh, Sam, you’re hurt.” Images snapped on and off in her mind. Had someone been shooting at them? Yes. “Oh, god, we were trying to get away and you got hit,” she said in a hoarse whisper. She placed a hand on his neck. Pulse felt strong, but he was cold, so very cold.
He moaned and shivered. Even in total confusion and disorientation, Tobi knew what she had to do and likewise, she knew how ironic it was. She had to get him naked.
She had planned to do just that at the end of the summer when all the interns went back to the university. But she had not thought to cut off wet, bloody clothes so she could triage gunshot wounds. Or warm up the body she’d coveted for two long months, to keep it from going into shock.
It gets a little steamy from here. So. . . .better wait :-)
Thank you, everyone, for reading my Newsletter.
Time to close the desert and go have a margarita.