“Well, all I gotta say is, thank God the bitch is gone.”
“You—what? I thought you liked Elise.”
“For a cop, you got the Pay Attention of a newt. I didn’t like that girl from day one, but I was polite to her, cause our mama taught me to be a gentleman. She’s selfish, self-centered, snobbish, mean, rude…. Do I need to go on?”
“No,” Grant remarked flatly. “And if I’d married her?”
“I’d have been polite to her face, and hated her behind her back. Like I been doing for the last four years.”
“Great. My brother thinks my girlfriend is a soulless bitch.”
“Heath, glad you’re back. Got a special job for you.”
“Yeah?” As the new man on the job, he was suspicious. Already, they had pulled several practical jokes at his expense.
“They need a delivery of gravel at the club house.”
“It was supposed to be delivered to them, but got sent here by mistake. I need you to drop it off on your way out. We can’t work anymore today. Got a squall line coming through. Supposed to rain all afternoon, and there’s thunderstorm warnings.”
“Okay. Where?” He got off his mule, grabbing his stuff to stow in his truck.
“It’s on a palette over there. Can’t miss it. It’s pink.”
“Pink gravel? What the hell for?”
“Search me. You good, though?”
“Yeah, if they are. I’m filthy, and I smell like ass.”
“Nope, dude, you smell like wet balls, sweaty socks—and ass,” his buddy Gerry said, grinning.
“Thanks, man. You smell like my dog’s ass.”
“You ain’t got a dog, man. They’re too smart to stay with ya.”
“That book better not be about me!” Francesca was staring her down.
“What makes you think I’d want to write about you when there are so many other more worthwhile subjects?”
“Because you hate me!”
“Hate is such a strong word, Fran.” She hated when she called her Fran. “I prefer detest, abhor, and a few like-minded synonyms.”
“Bitch! If I find out it is about me, I’ll sue! You can’t prove that I had anything to do with Natalie’s suicide.”
“Touché, Fran. And you can’t prove the book is about you! That’s what disclaimers are for. However, the fact is that the flash drive containing her manuscript conveniently went missing and voila! You just happened to release a strikingly similar novel.”
“Coincidence, and if I hear you slandering me in the press, I will sue as well.”
“I don’t have to. I read her manuscript at her request. She wanted a constructive opinion. I encouraged her to tighten up the plot and flesh out the characters.”
“I gave her advice, too.”
“No. You laughed at her and then bullied her at work.”
“She wasn’t doing her job. I merely got her to pay attention to the job and get her head out of the clouds.”
“It was harassment, plain and simple. You bullied her, so she quit, and she was so despondent, she ended her life.”
“She would have been fired if she hadn’t quit. You also couldn’t prove she killed herself because of me.”
“So you say. I may not have proof, but your callous treatment after her book was stolen, speaks to her fragile state of mind. I will never be able to wash the image of her hanging there out of my head. You might not have pulled the trigger, but you sure as hell cocked the gun!”
Francesca walked away in a huff.
Sylvie Boucher sidled up to Terri’s table. “What was that all about?”
“Just Fran, being the piece of work that she is,” she responded.
“So, is it true? Did you bury the truth about Nattie’s death in the novel?”
“That secret will go with me to my grave, Sylvie.”
Natalie Fisher committed suicide after an author stole her work and published it as her own.
Two years later, her best friend Terri is found dead in her hotel room.
Are the two deaths connected?
Laura Fitz and Detective Gibbons are on the case to trap a ruthless author trying to get away with murder!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Karen Vaughan lives in Peterborough Ontario with her husband Jim and a cat named JJ. She is the mom of a 27-year-old daughter and four grown stepchildren, a toddler granddaughter and a 7-year-old grandson named Izak who could very well be smarter than a fifth grader. DEAD COMIC STANDING is her second novel. Her first novel DEAD ON ARRIVAL garnered praise from friends, family, and online gamers. She also enjoys doing crafts and other hobbies. Her third book and sequel to DEAD ON ARRIVAL called OVER HER DEAD BODY. DAYTONA DEAD is the third in that series and was released in May 2013. Other than writing Karen loves to read, do crafts and play online games. Currently, she hosts an internet radio show called WRITERS ROUNDTABLE since January the 14th, 2014. She has a quirky sense of humor and shows this in her mysteries and her side hobby of stand-up comedy. DEAD MEN DON’T SWING AND JAMAICA DEAD WERE PUBLISHED in January 2015. LEFT FOR DEAD AND HOLMES IN AMERICA WERE PUBLISHED IN 2016. Karen is currently working on her 8th book in the Laura and Gerry series DEAD AIR. Karen is also a frequent participant of NaNoWriMo each year.
SPACE IS THE FINAL FRONTIER AND THERE IS NO GREATER ADVENTURE THAN SAILING THROUGH THE STARS WITH YOUR FAVE SCIENCE FICTION BOOK. IF YOU ARE A PURIST ISAAC ASIMOV AND ROBERT HEINLEIN ARE AMONGST YOUR FAVORITE AUTHORS. LETS DEFINE SCIENCE FICTION TO THOSE WHO HAVE NEVER EXPERIENCED READING IT. (THESE PEOPLE ARE MISSING SOMETHING GREAT!)
SO WHAT IS A SCIENCE FICTION NOVEL ANYWAY?–
Science fiction (often shortened to Sci-Fi or SF) is a genre of speculative fiction, typically dealing with imaginative concepts such as advanced science and technology, spaceflight, time travel, and extraterrestrial life.—GOOGLE
“Science fiction” is difficult to define, as it includes a wide range of subgenres and themes. James Blish wrote: “Wells used the term originally to cover what we would today call ‘hard’ science fiction, in which a conscientious attempt to be faithful to already known facts (as of the date of writing) was the substrate on which the story was to be built, and if the story was also to contain a miracle, it ought at least not to contain a whole arsenal of them.”
Isaac Asimov said: “Science fiction can be defined as that branch of literature which deals with the reaction of human beings to changes in science and technology.” According to Robert A. Heinlein, “a handy short definition of almost all science fiction might read: realistic speculation about possible future events, based solidly on adequate knowledge of the real world, past and present, and on a thorough understanding of the nature and significance of the scientific method.
Lester del Rey wrote, “Even the devoted aficionado—or fan—has a hard time trying to explain what science fiction is”, and that the reason for there not being a “full satisfactory definition” is that “there are no easily delineated limits to science fiction.” Author and editor Damon Knight summed up the difficulty, saying “science fiction is what we point to when we say it”, while author Mark C. Glassy argues that the definition of science fiction is like the definition of pornography: you do not know what it is, but you know it when you see it.–WIKIPEDIA
SOME ELEMENTS OF SCI-FI
Science fiction elements can include:
Temporal settings in the future, or in alternative histories.
Spatial settings or scenes in outer space, on other worlds, in subterranean earth, or in parallel universes
Characters that include aliens, mutants, robots, enhanced humans and other predicted or imagined beings.
Speculative or predicted technology such as brain-computer interface, bio-engineering, super-intelligent computers, ray guns and other advanced weapons.
Undiscovered scientific possibilities such as teleportation, time travel, and faster-than-light travel or communication.
New and different political and social systems and situations, including utopian, dystopian, post-apocalyptic, or post-scarcity.
While many beautiful entries in the science fiction universe do bend the rules about what is or isn’t possible in our physical universe (see Star Wars and the Force), much science fiction is actually based in science. This is hard science fiction. Hard science fiction exists inside the realm of scientific possibility.
Soft science fiction, or soft SF, is a category of science fiction with two different definitions. It either (1) explores the “soft” sciences, and especially the social sciences (for example, anthropology, sociology, or psychology), rather than engineering or the “hard” sciences (for example, physics, astronomy, or chemistry), or (2) is not scientifically accurate. Soft science fiction of either type is often more concerned with character and speculative societies, rather than speculative science or engineering. It is the opposite of hard science fiction. The term first appeared in the late 1970s and is attributed to Australian literary scholar Peter Nicholls.
IF I WERE TO PICK A CATEGORY I WOULD SIDE WITH SOFT SCI FI–THERE IS A WIDER ABILITY TO MIX IN DIFFERENT ELEMENTS LIKE ROMANCE AND FANTASY. FOR THAT TYPE OF SCIFI I WOULD RECOMMEND THE LONE WOLF SERIES BY DELLANI OAKES. SHE SAYS SHE LOVES WRITING SCIFI/FANTASY BECAUSE ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE. SHE INVENTED SENTIENT SHIPS (THEY WERE ALIVE), A RACE OF CAT PEOPLE WHO ARE FIERCE WARRIORS, AN ANCIENT EVIL SPECIES CALLED THE KAHLEA. HER MAIN CHARACTER WIL VANLIPSIG IS A GENETICALLY ALTERED SUPER SOLDIER WHO APPEARS TO BE A TOTAL BAD ASS BUT WHEN IT COMES TO HIS FRIENDS AND HIS WIFE MATILDA HE IS THE BIGGEST TEDDY BEAR. THERE IS A LOT OF HUMOR AND STEAMY ROMANCE INVOLVED AS WELL.
MY FAVE DYSTOPIAN NOVELS INCLUDE-THE GIVER BY LOIS LOWRY, THE HUNGER GAMES TRILOGY BY SUZANNE COLLINS AND THE DIVERGENT TRILOGY BY VERONICA ROTH
I COULD GO INTO MORE DETAIL BUT I HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU TRY SCI-FI ON FOR SIZE YOURSELF AND SEE WHAT YOU LIKE. DIVE IN AND DRIFT AMONGST THE STARS !!!!
CEREAL AUTHORS WHO WRITE SCIFI-HEATHER POINSETT DUNBAR, STEPHANIE OSBORNE AND DELLANI OAKES
SOURCES OF INFORMATION PROVIDED BY GOOGLE AND WIKIPEDIA
Wil, Matilda, Felix and one of the Kindred Elders were waiting for Ben on Wil’s sentient ship. As Matilda explained to Ben what they were going to attempt, his expression became dubious.
“Why do you need me? I’m not trained in this sort of thing.”
“The Elder wants you. You want to argue with him?” Matilda raised a speculative eyebrow.
Ben chuckled, ducking his head. “No, I don’t. What do we do?”
“Sentience has it all set up. She’ll make the connection, boost our signal by tapping into the Trimagnite pockets. The Elder has shown her how already. Then the Elder and Felix will guide us from there. Simple as that.”
“Where do we have to go?” Ben was still trying to take in details.
“We go to the Sentience’s control room and do what we’re told,” Wil replied.
Ben nodded. A few years ago, before coming on this trip, he’d have thought anyone completely psychotic for suggesting such a thing. Now, it didn’t sound crazy, it sounded like the best possible way for him to contact Emme.
If ever a book was predestined to be written by an individual, it was 50 HOURS by best-selling author Loree Lough. You will indeed find a piece of the author in between each page. Loree, healthy at the time she was commissioned to write the novel, was diagnosed with a similar terminal illness as her main character! The shocking diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma allowed her to write one of her most memorable novels to date. It is not by any means a depressing story that smacks of defeat or worse self-pity, but of all things, is a story of redemption, peace, second chances, friendship, forgiveness and of course, LOVE!
The famous novelist Catherine Lanigan of Romancing the Stone, Jewel of the Nile, and a multitude of other works, wrote, “This is the kind of book that wins Pulitzer prizes,” the highest compliment for any literary fiction novel.
Loree, admittedly, found it challenging at times to write 50 HOURS and early on confessed to Kevin James O’Neill, the screenplay writer the novel is based upon and a movie producer, that she wasn’t sure if she could handle the story or workload. However, for over a year and a half, through twice-daily chemo, plus a stem cell transplant, Loree could not get the characters out of her head and had the overwhelming desire to finish the novel. Wanting more than ever to show readers whose lives had been touched by this dreaded disease, cancer, that, “There’s always plenty of reason to hope and have something to be thankful for,” Loree forged ahead.
The realization that millions of others were facing the same prognosis as her self and her main character, Loree decided to put one foot in front of the other and keep moving forward. For her, it was cathartic, and she hoped it would be for her readers—not just cancer patients and their families—too. Loree has always believed she was fairly tough; living by the “Never let ’em see ya sweat” and “Never let ’em see ya cry” codes, and continued to think that way as she poured her heart and soul into her novel through her characters Aubrey, Franco, and Dusty.
Aubrey is living with the constant knowledge that her life is slowly ebbing to an end, but she’s determined to squeeze as much joy from every precious moment she has left. Still, she’s lonely, exhausted, and no matter how hard she tries to hide it, terrified! Meeting Franco gives Aubrey a thread of hope to grasp onto, as she realizes that her long-held dream of painting autumn, in of all places Savannah, has come true with his help. Franco, burdened by the belief that he’s partially responsible for the car wreck that killed his wife, turned him into a man who eked out his existence by merely putting one foot in front of the other because he doesn’t know what else to do. After meeting Aubrey, whose zest for life is infectious, his 50 hours of community service tick by, as he finds himself drawn to her strength.
Loree found herself putting words into Aubrey’s mouth, that she’d only ever said in the privacy of her own mind. Talking with her fellow patients proved she wasn’t alone: A lot of cancer patients keep things to themselves. They do it to spare their loved ones, already worried and afraid of an uncertain future, who aren’t entirely sure or know how to comfort their loved ones. Through Aubrey, Loree was able to tell them that she expected nothing, quite literally, except to be with them (her family and friends). It isn’t easy watching someone you care about suffering the side effects of drugs and treatments. Loree, through Aubrey, showed friends and family that she appreciated their steadfastness. Aubrey’s relationship with Franco and her mother helped her make that point.
Her research and interviews proved there are far too many “loved ones” like Aubrey’s ex-husband; Michael who put on a good show of being the dutiful spouse…until the condition, like Aubrey’s, deteriorated, taking the spotlight off him and putting it back on her. It’s an ugly fact, but a fact nonetheless: The occasional loved one will leave. Through Aubrey, Loree hoped to show cancer patients and family members alike that they can survive even that!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Once upon a time, best-selling author Loree Lough (literally) sang for her supper, performing before packed audiences throughout the U.S. Now and then, she blows the dust from her 6-string to croon a tune or two for her grandchildren but mostly, she just writes full time. Over the years, her stories have earned nearly 100 industry and “Readers’ Choice” awards, 7 movie options, and over eighty 4- and 5-star reviews. There are NEARLY seven million copies of Loree’s books in circulation, and by year-end of 2018, she’ll have 119 books (fiction and non-fiction for kids and adults) 72 short stories, 2,500+ articles in print. Loree shares her [i]learned-the-hard-way[/i] lessons about the craft and the industry, and her comedic approach makes her a favorite (and frequent) guest of writers’ organizations, book clubs, private and government institutions, college and high school writing programs both here and abroad. A writer who believes in “giving back,” Loree dedicates a portion of her income to Soldiers’ Angels, Special Operations Warrior Foundation, and other worthwhile organizations. She splits her time between her home in the Baltimore suburbs and a cabin in the Allegheny Mountains, and shares both with her real-life hero Larry, who rarely complains, even when she adds yet another item to her vast collection of lighthouses, wind chimes, and “wolf stuff.”
Spreading the word about this book increases the opportunity for Kevin James O’Neill to take make it a feature film as intended. Royalties from 50 HOURS go toward Cancer Research. Specifically, the Multiple Myeloma ResearchFoundation.
50 HOURS is available wherever books are sold including Amazon
When I was thirteen I was called out of my class by the principal, Mr. Carrolio. The principal led the way ahead of me into the main stairwell. We were probably going down to his office. I thought, isn’t that where you ended up if you’ve done something wrong, and where the principal can yell at you, you hope, without others hearing it. This was embarrassing.
But this was even worse for me. Mr. Carrolio was not only the principal but was a friend of my aunt and uncle’s. This was not a good thing to be happening, especially since I didn’t know what I had done. I was mortified.
As far as I knew no one had ever been pulled out of my class by the principal before. But it happened to me.
He was ahead of me in the stairwell, and half way down he stopped and turned to look at me.
“Where you out with Leslie last night?” He said, though he used Leslie’s last name too.
I was glad we weren’t moving down the stairs because I was sure I would have stumbled and falled down them just then. And I didn’t know if I gasped out loud at the question though I thought my mouth opened and some sound came out. How did he know I was with Leslie last night? My knees quivered in fear and my nose began to run. I had to wipe it with my hand.
I was always willing to do whatever a friend wants to do for the most part. I wasn’t looking to get in trouble. I never liked it when my parents were disappointed but when Leslie said we were going to kiss boys that was exciting to me. I had never kissed a boy before. I needed the experience.
I didn’t think we did anything wrong. Yet Mr. Carrolio asking about it seem to imply it was. How did he learn about it, I wondered while not being able to turn away from his stare. After all, he was an adult. I was taught to respect them.
I shakingly said, “yes,” to his question was I with Leslie last night.
“Did the boys kiss you?” he asked watching my face. The boys he was referring to were two black boys from the eighth grade. Now, my brain screamed; maybe my parents wouldn’t want me kissing boys. Though I didn’t know for sure. I never talked to them about that kind of thing. Then I thought, if he tells my parents, or worse, tell my aunt, she would make a bigger deal of it, I would have to have that conversation with them. Even more humiliating.
Last night after dinner I met Leslie, but the excitement vanished with a kiss. We met the two boys under the the overpass along Route 80. It was a deserted place with the only sounds were of the vehicles above racing along on the highway. It turned out to be a crude experience. First there were some weak hellos with the boys on one side and Leslie and me facing them. Then, with some shuffling back and forth by all, the boys just leaned forward to kiss the girl opposite. The one kissing me crushed his lips to mine for maybe ten seconds, and that was it. I hadn’t yet formed an opinion of kissing when that boy declared, “She doesn’t know how to kiss.”
Leslie gave out a short giggle. And the boys turned and walked away. From excitement to dismal now, I just wanted to go home. Leslie said nothing about it and I was thankful.
From five years old, until the Beatles came to the USA, I was in love with Johnny Mathis. We owned one album each from Johnny Mathis, The Ink Spots, The Platters, Frank Sinatra, and after November 1963, one album of speeches by John F. Kennedy. I would put Johnny’s on the record player playing it over again until my mother said to stop. She never told me Johnny was black.
I stammered, “yes,” to his question about the boys kissing us feeling sick.
“Were you petting?” he asked.
“What’s that?” I was frowning.
“Did they touch your body?” he inserted.
“No,” I said, why should they was my next thought. And anyway, it was early fall and though not so cold I was wearing my heavy winter coat because my mother said it was going to get colder. It was a hand-me-down red duffle coatm a give a way from one of my father’s more wealthy tax clients who thought his five children needed more clothes than we could afford. My father was an accountant. He charged every one seven dollars no matter who they were. Companies paid fifteen dollars. But, anyhow, touching would have been hard to do with that old coat over my slight build.
Mr. Carrolio just stared at me for what must have been a minute, I think, before he said, “You can go back to class.”
I bolted back up the stairs. My classroom was the first room on the left at top of the landing. As I entered the classroom I felt on display. Every one of my classmates turned to stare at me like they knew all about it. Mr. Tamorino paused a second then went on talking as I slipped back into my seat, my face hot.