Search – Friday, 29 September 73

A triple murder in 1973 Maine starts a search for evil that ends with a discovery of one’s destiny

 
Those who’re supporting me on Patreon may remember Introductions. I mentioned being asked to write some kind of murder mystery/detective/profiler and that I’d been doing just that. The work-in-progress, Search, is fact-based. Here’s the first chapter. Let me know what you think.


Grandfather Wolfe sat in the upper right corner of the auditorium listening to his nephew, Isaac Many Deer, talking to the cenhepé about things they could never understand. He’d come in late and planned on sleeping anyway so he didn’t take off his black AIM jacket or cowboy hat except to wave it at Isaac as he sat down.

He stretched out, legs crossed in front of him, the rough feel of freshly washed Wranglers scratching a little, his fingers gently intertwined and his hands resting across his stomach, his thumbs tapping his red on gray flannel shirt, wondering why college auditorium seats were so unaccommodating to old bones.

He didn’t hear the preacher’s question and half heard Isaac’s answer, “What kind of test did you have in mind?”

Wolfe smiled. That’s it, nephew. Piss them off early and often.

It seemed the preacher mumbled while Isaac spoke plainly, clearly. Perhaps he was more familiar with his nephew’s voice.

Wolfe’s nose twitched. Isaac looked over. “I’m familiar with the Old Testament’s test of a true prophet, yes.”

His nose twitched again.

Wolfe nodded at his nephew. His thumbs drummed a Nowiy’o Pe, a war song, on his shirt. The hairs bristled on the back of his neck. Isaac returned his nod; he felt it, too.

Somebody in the auditorium was hunting.

You need to login to view the rest of the content. Please . Not a Member? Join Us

The Return of the Seven

Ham with a side of Cranberry? Really?

I haven’t shared notes about our resident turkeys since The Chuckster and then to mention we hadn’t seen them in a bit. Prior to that, I wrote about Two Toms a’ Struttin’ and noted that, with that much testosterone hanging, turklets (we’ve been instructed they’re not “hatchlings” or some such. The proper translation from Toiga, the primary Turkey language, is “turklet”) were sure to be around.

We’d been hearing turkeys calling each other for a while. Hadn’t seen anyone, though. No turkey signs, either. You know, those signs they carry. Ban Thanksgiving!, Humans are Turkeys, Too!, Support the Turkey Lobby!, and Try Ham with a Side of Cranberry! So Good and So Good for You!.

Anyway, one day as I was working on Gable Smiled and had a sense I was being Turkied. Sure enough, lifting my eyes from my monitor, what do I behold?

There were more than seven, of course. I counted fourteen at one point (they came three times. Wanted to be sure I understood this was to be a turkey-less Thanksgiving this season).

And there were turklets. More like turkteens but still turklets.

Welcome.

Grafton’s Ghost-Child

Even unto the Seventh Generation

 
Grafton turned the knob on his daughter Cloe’s bedroom door so slowly, thankful for the patience that came so naturally to him. The doorknob would sometimes crick and he didn’t want to wake her, just peek in to watch her sleep, make sure she was snug under the covers. Sometimes Amanda would open the window in their daughter’s room to let the night air in and Cloe would curl up into a tight little ball, just her nose exposed and forming a little steam tent.

She was adorable.

His hand turned past the crick, he opened the door slowly. Sure enough, a few icy snowcrystals blew in as he entered and Cloe was beginning her curl into a ball. Like her father, she was patient. It would take about ten minutes before she was done, never waking once. Grafton had watched her do it.

As he entered, Cloe’s Merchant-Ghost looked up. It was sitting in a recliner beside the nightstand next to his daughter’s bed. It was reading a book – Grafton could see it in his hands. It had to be as ancient as the merchant ghost itself – it’s eyes emitting that odd red-yellow light to illuminate the pages. The Merchant-Ghost nodded, its tree-like body and bark-like skin folding as it moved, then went back to its reading.

You need to login to view the rest of the content. Please . Not a Member? Join Us

Chester and Sylvie

The kits are out and about

A few weeks back I wrote Vasch and Euste Join Us for Some Casual Dining. I have mentioned the possibility of fox kits in Vasch the Fox. We knew kits were out there (we’d heard them crying more than one night) and waited patiently until they made their presence known.

Sure enough, a few nights back that’s just what they did.

Welcome Chester and Sylvie, Vasch and Euste’s kits from earlier this year (we think).

We, of course, are thrilled that Chester and Sylvie have human-pronounceable names.

But they are fox.

They could be foolin’ us.

William Noble’s “‘Shut Up!’ He explained”

Make every word your characters speak count

I reviewed William Noble’s Make That Scene on both Goodreads and in a bit more detail on my blog. That book was a gem, so I picked up Noble’s Shut Up! He explained and settled in for some good learnings.

Truth is, I’ve read the book twice in two years and will easily read it twice if not thrice more in the next few years. It’s that good.

Truly amusing to me is how little I retained from my first read. Of all that’s in the book, I locked on the gem about having characters ask each other questions to keep dialogue interesting, engaging and moving. Probably because I was writing lots of dialogue for a work-in-progress, Ritchie and Phyl (A Celebration of Life). That wonderful piece of advice became my big hammer for several dialogues in several works-in-progress. It’s an incredible tool all by itself and worth the price of admission.

But that, as noted, was what stuck with me from my first read. My second read had me dog-earing pages starting at 5 and several pages in each chapter thereafter.

For authors working on realistic, believable character exchanges – the book covers more than dialogue but dialogue is the main focus – it’s a must.
Continue reading “William Noble’s “‘Shut Up!’ He explained””