Category Archives: writing

Rainbow Snippet for 8-18-2018

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).   Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

Still posting from Book Five of the Academy of the Accord (fantasy) series that I have been (and will be) working on for forever.

As promised, I’m skipping ahead and introducing Kordelm’s and Wellhym’s wizards, Caristen and Torlew. (They’ve actually been in the series since Book 2, and were met earlier in this one.) They’ve been away with Marsden, taking care of the headmaster of the orphanage that Draethlen came from.

(Senzu is an apprentice wizard and Draethlen is her Warder. She is not human and has a hard time trusting and believing in their bond, even though she’s the one that recognized it.)

The days passed in a steady routine – warrior training in the mornings, lessons with Senzu in the afternoons, evenings usually spent with Senzu, who remained slightly aloof, although there were times when her guard would slip and Draethlen would have a glimpse of her vulnerability, but the next time he saw her or spoke to her the distance would be there again. 

It was about a month after his arrival that Draethlen woke in the middle of the night to the feeling that something wasn’t right. Opening his eyes he saw two figures moving between the rows of bunks, their movements quiet and stealthy.

“Captains!” he shouted, sitting up and reaching for his sword, his heart pounding. “Intruders!”

 

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday Words #190 (8/15/2018)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

On 9/28/16 I used “You are an alien, the first of your race to discover/visit Earth. Write a report to send to your home world.” 

This week’s prompt is aa variation on that theme:

You are an alien, on holiday to a primitive planet (Earth). Share a page from your travel journal.

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

(Sorry this week’s is late. I messed up the date.)

 

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Sunday Snippet, August 12, 2018

I’m posting from Hedge House, a nearly completed first draft. Finishing it is going to be my project for Camp NaNoWriMo this month. I’m not quite sure whether to classify it as paranormal or urban fantasy; the two of them tend to blur together a lot for me.

Skipping ahead a bit from last week. Cara has reached her grandmother’s house (after a few wrong turns).

 

She stepped out of the car and pocketed the keys, taking a deep breath of the evening air and savoring the scent of freshly cut grass. A few birds squabbled in the hedge that surrounded the property and a gentle breeze rustled the leaves and brushed her hair, soothing her.

“I see you made it. Any trouble?”

Jacob’s now familiar voice was closer than she had expected and she jumped, startled.

“Not after I turned the wrong way three times.”

He chuckled, his blue eyes crinkling in his weathered face. “You did well finding it at all after all this time.” He sobered, his gaze sharpening as he studied her. “Any other trouble?”

“I… was delayed leaving the Starlight. The town mayor came to meet me.”

“Jonas.”

She nodded. There was a note of barely concealed contempt in the man’s voice and she shared the sentiment.

“The desk clerk called to tell him I was there.”

“Of course he did. Jonas owns the place. Come on, let’s get your luggage and drop it off in the house and then you can come on over to my place for some supper before you turn in. You look about ready to drop.”

 

Tentative Blurb:

When Cara Hawthorne returns to the childhood home she had been torn away from twenty years earlier, she thinks it will be to do nothing more than settle her grandmother’s estate and return to her job as a junior lawyer at a prestigious law firm in Tulsa.

But every nook and cranny of the house and gardens unearths long-buried memories, and when the town’s mayor sets his sights on her and the property she finds herself caught up in a centuries old battle with powers she has only barely begun to understand

 

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

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Rainbow Snippet for 8-11-2018

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).   Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

Still posting from Book Five of the Academy of the Accord (fantasy) series that I have been (and will be) working on for forever.

I’m wrapping up the scene with Kordelm, Wellhym, and Draethlen. Next week you’ll get to meet Kordelm’s and Wellhym’s wizards — they’re currently off helping Marsden take care of Draethlen’s old headmaster.

(For those just tuning in, Kordelm and Wellhym are warriors, captains at The Academy of the Accord, and they are lovers. Draethlen is a 10 year old cadet rescued from an orphanage where he was sexually abused by the headmaster.)

“As far as we are concerned,” Kordelm told him, “you are our little brother.”

“And we love you as we would a little brother,” Wellhym murmured. “Don’t ever forget that.”

“I won’t,” Draethlen promised.

“Good. Now, bedtime. We’ll roust you out in time for some lessons in protocol before breakfast.”

Wellhym pulled Draethlen’s blankets back and they both waited until he undressed and got into his cot, then Wellhym pulled his blankets up and brushed his hair back. “It’s going to be all right,” he told him. “You are going to make it through all of this and be so much stronger than you can currently believe.”

“Thank you,” Draethlen said. “I – I promise I won’t let you down.”

“We know you won’t,” Kordelm said, smiling. “And we promise not to let you down, either.”

 

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday Words #189 (8/8/2018)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

outside my window

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

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Sunday Snippet, August 5, 2018

I’m posting from Hedge House, a nearly completed first draft.

I’m picking up from last week. Cara met the town mayor while checking out of the hotel and he asked her out for dinner.

“I’m not sure how long I’m going to be in town,” she replied. “I just came for the funeral and then I’ll be going back to Tulsa.”

He nodded. “We’ll be sorry to see you go. If you need any help at all, don’t hesitate to call me.” He handed her a business card. “If you decide to sell the house and business I’m sure I can find a buyer.”

“Sell…?” She looked up from the card, confused.

“You don’t know? Your grandmother left everything to you. Apparently she never took into consideration the fact that you might have a life elsewhere.”

Something in his tone rankled, reminding her too much of her mother’s attitude toward her grandmother, but she forced herself to remain polite. 

 

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

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Rainbow Snippet for 8-4-2018

rainbow logo 1

Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).   Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

Still posting from Book Five of the Academy of the Accord (fantasy) series that I have been (and will be) working on for forever.

I’m picking up from last week, where Draethlen asked Wellhym if he and Kordelm were lovers.

(For those just tuning in, Kordelm and Wellhym are warriors, captains at The Academy of the Accord, and they are lovers. Draethlen is a 10 year old cadet rescued from an orphanage where he was sexually abused by the headmaster.)

“Drae,” Kordelm said, suddenly serious again. “Did the headmaster tell you that he was doing those things because he loved you?”

Draethlen looked down, not wanting to meet their eyes. “Yes.” His voice was barely a whisper.

“But you know that wasn’t love?”

“Yes.” His voice was a bit stronger, more certain.

“And do you also know,” Wellhym said slowly, as he realized where his partner was going with these questions, “that just because we are not doing what he did, that doesn’t mean we don’t care about you? Because we do.”

Kordelm nodded in agreement, but Draethlen barely saw him; his eyes were filling with tears and making it hard to see. Suddenly both men were on their knees and they were holding him, and instead of flinching away from their touch he reached out to them as well.

 

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday Words #188 (8/1/2018)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

medicine
an abandoned road
an irritable human

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

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Impact!

Here today to help celebrate the release of a new anthology.

(No, I’m not in it but I know a lot of the people who are and it’s awesome, so…)

Blurb:

IM * PACT
(noun)

1) One object colliding with another

2) An impinging of something upon something else

3) An influence or effect on something or someone

4) The force of a new idea, concept, technology or ideology

Four definitions to inspire writers around the world, and an unlimited number of possible stories to tell, but only 110 made the final cut.

A difficult choice to be made. An object hurtling recklessly through space. A new invention that will change the world. So many things can impact a life, a society, or a planet.

Impact features 300 word speculative fiction ficlets from across the queer spectrum from the minds of the writers of Queer Sci Fi.

Welcome to Impact.

Author Name: Queer Sci Fi
Publisher: Other Worlds Ink
Release Date: Thursday, July 26 2018
Format: Paperback, eBook
Is This Book Romance?: No
ASN: coming soon
Price: 3.99, 14.99
Story Type: Novella 20k-50k
Word Count: 33,700
Cover Artist: Lex Chase
Genres: sci fi, fantasy, paranormal, horror
Pairings: Some stories are romance, with various pairings

Warnings: This book contains 110 stories of 300 words or less each.

Series Title: Queer Sci Fi’s Annual Flash Fiction Contest
Position (Number) in Series: 4
Necessary to Read Previous Books: No
Other Books in Series Available for Review?: Yes

Series Blurb:
It’s hard to tell a story in just 300 words. Each year we ask writers to take the challenge, turning in stories across the queer spectrum. The rules are simple. Write a complete sci fi, fantasy, paranormal or horror story, include LGBTIQA characters, and do it all with just 300 carefully chosen words.

Excerpt:

Since this book is composed of stories of no more than 300 words, we can’t really do a standard excerpt, so we’re offering you the teaser first lines from a number of stories.

“She’d needed new oil. She felt her joints grow stiff, her muscles grow tight, her follicles thickening. If she didn’t get fresh quarts soon, people she passed would start calling her sir, asking, Where’s your gun?” —Crossville Station, by Nathan Alling Long

“The mallet’s impact on the hard, bright disk shattered the silence in the talking chamber. The resulting deep tone reverberated through the vault, through Saskia, as she fidgeted beside her lover.” —Settled, by Aidee Ladnier

“This is how the world ends, or so they say. From where I’m standing, it simply looks like a rolling darkness as distant lights flicker and die.” —Visitors, by LJ Phillips

“’What have you done?’ The mechanical eyes came to rest on his face, the droning beep sounding loud in the small room.” —Identity and Change, by Jo Tannah

“’Once upon a world, we were the same,’ he said, lifting my hand to his lips; the ground shaking beneath us.” —Impact, by Jack Ladd

“I been a tinker and soothsayer long enough to know this country’s at the cusp of war. They stir up hate easy as breath. And, oh, it pains my soul to see it. “ —Impact of Intervention, by Patricia Scott

“All lives begin with a messy impact of some kind. The crash of zygotes and gametes. Splats of silica gel between cybernetic synapses. Two women slam into each other carrying full cups of coffee.” —Quintessence, by E.M. Hammill

“If I venture far enough into the house, I’ll find my closet.” —The Closet, by K.S. Trenten

“It touched Ligaya when she was a child. Or she touched it. A half-glimpsed shape under her bed.” Mas Mabuti An Answang, by Foster Bridget Cassidy

“Jam zipped down the neon track, feather-light in low gravity. She rocketed forward, a glowing haze in her starred helmet, and shot past the pack. “Space Jammer!” echoed as she neared the line. Time to rack up the points.” —First Bout: Andromedolls Vs. Crotch Rockets, by Ginger Streusel

 

Buy Links:

Amazon Kindle 

Amazon Paperback

Barnes & Noble 

iBooks 

Kobo 

Angus & Robertson

Goodreads 

Giveaway:

Queer Sci Fi is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card with this tour – enter via Rafflecopter for a chance to win.

About Queer Sci Fi:

At Queer Sci Fi, we’re building a community of sci fi, fantasy, paranormal and horror writers and readers who want a little rainbow in their speculative fiction. We run a great discussion group on Facebook, a twitter feed, and have a website full of useful materials, news, and announcements for readers and writers of queer speculative fiction.

Website 

Facebook Discussion Group 

Facebook Page 

Twitter

 

More Excerpts!
(Because, really, isn’t that the best part?)

The Best Opening Lines
Scott Coatsworth

Good flash fiction starts with a great opening line. Here are a few of them which really hooked us this year:

“I can’t reprimand him for doing what he did. He did it out of love.” —Civil War, by Kevin Klehr

“The pain was immediate. The burning, searing sensation was so overpowering Reina couldn’t tell if it was caused by profound heat or agonizing cold. Every muscle locked, tendons and ligaments stretched to their utmost limits, and she couldn’t even scream.” —Love and Sacrifice, by Bryony Kayn

“In space, silence is your enemy. Silence is loud and quiet all at once. It’s overwhelming and underwhelming. It’s death, and life. But mostly death.” —Cradled in Space, by Tia Liet

“The moment the sour spiciness hit her tongue, Phuong heard her grandmother’s voice in her memory, ‘You can’t rush the kimchi.’” —Brenda Noiseux

“I’ve always said that Death was a close personal friend. I’ve delivered so many clients to his doorstep I should receive a commission.” —Death’s Kiss, by Kethric Wilcox

“She stared at her reflection in the quiet silver of the lake. Hood pulled low, eyes too bright, teeth shining in the moonlight. The pebble left her hand in a shaky throw. It rippled through the surface, ripping it apart.” —Ripples and Regret, by Hannah Henry

“A cold February wind swept across the frozen cemetery ground, piling dead leaves and twigs at the bases of the headstones. On his knees with a large mound of gravesite dirt in front of him, Trent placed his gloved hands on the mound and said, ‘I’m so sorry I had to kill you.’” —Together Again, by Steve Carr

Whet your appetite yet? *grin*

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Sunday Snippet, July 29, 2018

I’m posting from Hedge House, a nearly completed first draft. Finishing it is going to be my project for Camp NaNoWriMo this month. I’m not quite sure whether to classify it as paranormal or urban fantasy; the two of them tend to blur together a lot for me.

I’m picking up a bit from last week — Cara is at the front desk, checking out of the motel.

 

The door opened and another man entered. He was tall, well-built, with dark hair and dark eyes, and too well-dressed to be a patron.  

“Miss Hawthorne?”

“Yes?”

“I’m Jonas Blackthorn, the town mayor. I’d heard you were here and wanted to extend my condolences, and offer to assist you in any way I could.”

“Thank you, Mr. Blackthorn.” Cara forced a smile around her instant dislike for the man. “News travels fast here.”

“I called him,” Bryan said. “I figured he’d want to know you were here.”

“Indeed I did. I didn’t even know you were coming. Perhaps after things have settled we can go for dinner?”

 

Tentative Blurb:

When Cara Hawthorne returns to the childhood home she had been torn away from twenty years earlier, she thinks it will be to do nothing more than settle her grandmother’s estate and return to her job as a junior lawyer at a prestigious law firm in Tulsa.

But every nook and cranny of the house and gardens unearths long-buried memories, and when the town’s mayor sets his sights on her and the property she finds herself caught up in a centuries old battle with powers she has only barely begun to understand

 

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

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