Monthly Archives: January 2016

THINGS THAT DRIVE ME BATTY…

Last Monday in January…seriously, this year is flying by. Or maybe I just have so much to do, that never seems to get done, that I’m lost in some kind of wacky time shift thingy. Yes, thingy is a technical term ūüėČ

Anyway, this week’s Wednesday randomness is WRITING PET PEEVES. You all have them. Those little things that make you want to tear out the pages in the book…or your hair. Both. And¬†I often wonder how these issues made it past the entire editing team. Of course, I’m sure these don’t bother everyone, but… shall we begin.

POV skewing, or head hopping‚ÄĒthis is, hands down, my biggest peeve. Especially when it happens every other paragraph. Pick a head. Stay it in until there’s a reasonable time to shift. I try to pick mostly chapters these days, but sometimes you have to make the jump mid-chapter. And that, I get. But the constant shifting…

Characters that are too stupid to live.¬†There’s a fine line between a character taking a chance and simply being an idiot. You know what I’m talking about, though it’s most prevalent on the big screen. Every freaking horror movie where they decide to ‘split up’ despite the fact folks are dropping like panties at a frat party. I can only dispel belief so much, people.

Rushed endings. Spoiler alert. You can’t end a book in a page. Not even two, unless it was only a ten page story. I’m not a horse trying to get back to the barn before sunset. Make it worth finishing. But, by all means… go right ahead and tie this bad boy up in, say, a paragraph after keeping me in suspense for two hundred pages. I didn’t really want you to make it all worthwhile.

Heroines who can’t order a sandwich from Subway without the hero ‘guiding’ them. Just…no. (or the other way around, though I haven’t encountered that yet. But I’m sure it’s out there.)

Poor research. News flash, folks. Readers come from all walks of life. So yeah, a helicopter pilot is going to read your story and know if you even looked up what a helicopter is and what it can do. (Hint… that’s me) So don’t bullshit. At least get the basics right. You don’t have to teach me how to fly, but get the damn instruments right.¬†

Non stop flashbacks. I don’t mind a few. A dream sequence tossed in here and there, but when I need a DeLorean to keep track of what time we’re in… perhaps you’ve gone a bit overboard.

I could go on. There are so many other points I’ll remember later. But there’s only so much time, folks. Now go and check out the other ladies. You won’t be sorry you did.

Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica Jarman  |  Jessica De La Rosa

Kayleigh Jones  |  Kellie St. James  |  Gwendolyn Cease

 

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY ~ HAPPINESS

I love wordless Wednesdays, except I never seem to have any images uploaded, lol. Anyway, this month’s topic is happiness. I’m sure I’ve used many of these images before, but… I don’t think it’s any surprise what makes me happy. So, here goes…

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(Didn’t really know how to represent writing, cover art wordlessly and without uploading EVERYTHING. So the above kinda says it all.)

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That’s it for me, folks. Go visit the other ladies and their wordless ideas of happiness. Thinking mine might be a tad different, lol. Only because you poor souls don’t have Tim Hortons ūüôā

Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica De La Rosa

Kellie St. James  |  Paige Prince  |  Gwendolyn Cease

 

SONG FLASH FICTION ~ CREEP

And already, we’re in the middle of January, which means time for the first song flash fiction of 2016. I swear I’ve entered some kind of time portal, which is sucking the time away faster, but… Anyway, this month the song is Creep, by Radiohead. It’s a really cool song musically‚ÄĒa bit depressing lyrically, but all good I suppose. If you’d like to give it a listen, here’s the youtube video, otherwise, let’s begin…

 

“For the love of God, Kent, can we please listen to something else?”

Kent¬†Foster glanced at Seth, arching his brow as his buddy reached for the radio, flicking through a dozen stations. “You got a problem with my choice of music? I thought you liked Radiohead?”

“It’s not the band, jerk, it’s the song. First, it’s freaking Coldplay with Fix You, then Great Big World with inarguably the saddest fucking song ever written and now Creep. Dude, don’t you think we’ve had enough of the depressing shit?”

Kent shrugged. “I¬†just like the way it rises and falls. Didn’t stop to analyze it.”

“Since when? You overanalyze everything. Besides, it’s the damn title. I don’t care how good the band is that song title is just‚Ķ”

“Creepy?”

Seth rolled his eyes, glaring at him. “Seriously? You’re fucking hysterical, Kent.”

Kent grinned. “It’s just a song, Seth. Lighten up.”

“We just spent two weeks tracking then killing a rogue shifter. Month before that unearthing a vampire nest. I can’t remember the last time we had a day off. Hell, a normal day.”

“Normal’s overrated.”

“Normal would be nice for a change.” Seth motioned to the radio. “So sue me if I’d rather listen to something that doesn’t remind me of everything we’ve lost. Been forced to leave¬†behind. How every damn failure only serves to strengthen¬†the notion that maybe we really aren’t good enough.”

Kent glanced at his friend. “Are you okay? Someone ruffie your coke or something?”

“Don’t sit there and tell me you don’t think about shit like this. I know you do. I hear you mumbling to yourself when you think I’m asleep. You’re just as messed up as I am. Maybe more so.”

“Sorry, bro, but you’re mistaking me with someone who has any fucks to give.”

“Cut the crap, Kent. You give all the fucks.”

Kent snorted. “Fine. I care about helping people. Stopping creatures¬†that develop a taste for blood. But not when it comes to self-analyzing. I don’t need to measure up to anyone else’s idea of worth. I do my job, release a bit of steam when I can‚Ķpretty simple if you ask me. And if others don’t like it, that’s their¬†problem.”

“You are so full of it. But, by all means, keep pretending if it helps you sleep at night.”

Kent winked at him. “Only sleep during the day. You know that.”

Seth groaned as his phone blared above the music. “Great. That’s probably another damn case.”

“No rest for the wicked, and all that.” Kent nodded at him. “Can you get that before I have to listen to that rendition of Hallelujah again, please? It’s not even the good one.”

“It’s Bon Jovi. You really are musically challenged, you know that?” He swiped his finger across the surface. “Mulder. If you want Scully you’ll have to ring him.”

“You’re such an ass.” He focused on the road, listening to Seth’s side of the conversation. Great, it sounded as if the guy was arranging for some kind of sexual hook up with a fellow hunter. Which meant another dive motel Kent would¬†have to spend the night in while Seth got to sleep with some hottie he’d met on one of their previous cases.

“Sure, baby. I’ll meet you there, say, midnight? Perfect. Room one oh nine. Got it.”

Kent glared at Seth. “She’s probably a newly turned werewolf.”

Seth shrugged. “Moon’s no longer full. As long as she keep wearing skin, I’m cool. Besides, she’s hotter than the damn sun.”

“Maybe you can get matching tags for your collars.”

“Just shut up and drive.”

Kent bit back his retort. He hated to admit it, but Seth deserved a night off. Hell, a year of one-night stands wouldn’t come close to what either of them truly needed. He just didn’t want to admit he was jealous. Or maybe just lonely. Or that Seth had¬†hit too close to home when he’d turned off the damn Radiohead song. That maybe, Kent was the creep. The one who didn’t measure up. Who wasn’t special enough to ever find even a hint of happiness. That his phone rarely rang with anything other than a description of bloody corpses or lost children.

He glanced at Seth. Lucky bastard. He just hoped the unsettling feeling in his gut was the jealousy talking and not some weird kind of premonition. That Seth wasn’t, actually, walking into some kind of trap. Kent shook off the thoughts. Just his imagination kicking in. Just because most doors hid creatures that wanted to eat them didn’t mean a few didn’t lead¬†to paradise. Even if it was a room stuck in the seventies and the euphoria only lasted a few hours.

 

And that’s it for me. Sorry, but I’m nursing some silly complications from a concussion I got snowboarding, and honestly, I’m finding it so damn hard to concentrate. let alone write. Who knew the screen was so bright ūüėČ Please check out the other ladies and see what they came up with.

Bronwyn Green |  Jessica Jarman  |  Jessica De La Rosa  |  Paige Prince

 

 

PROMPTLY PENNED ~ JANUARY

A new year, and some new blogging topics. This week being one of them. It’s called, Promptly Penned. The basics are…everyone will start with the same snippet, then go from there. A flash fiction of sorts, I suppose. Each author can choose how to use the prompt, whether it be dialogue or internal thought or whatever. Which I’m sure will lead to some interesting works. Like a big game of telephone gone wrong, lol. So, here we go at attempt number one.

Promptly Penned

 

Some choices are easy, like fudge ripple or butter pecan, some choices aren’t. Can you guess which one this was?

Detective Kate Stevens shook her head as she pressed her fingers against the bridge of her nose, not that it’d do much good. The headache had already taken root. Nothing but time or drugs would touch it now. And somehow downing half a bottle of Motrin while working a murder didn’t seem like a viable solution. She glanced at the paper again, rereading the words scribbled across the christ white sheet, knowing she’d officially seen it all.

A rumble of thunder sounded off to the east, the promise of rain heavy in the late night air. A nearby streetlight buzzed as it flickered, casting weird shadows against the brick building before settling again. She turned up her¬†collar against a¬†blast of cold, damp¬†air, tucking her hands in her pocket. Seems winter hadn’t quite blown itself out, yet, despite the recent trend of warmer weather.

Footsteps scuffed the pavement¬†behind her as a man moved into her peripheral view. She didn’t need to turn to know who it was. Special Agent Kurt Baxter¬†headed the violent crimes unit for the Seattle branch, and seemed to be¬†the Bureau’s prime choice in interagency ventures. Not that she had a clue why he was here. As far as she was concerned, this was just a routine killing in an alley of one of the poorer districts the city¬†had to offer. Her gaze strayed to the paper lying beside the victim’s bloody body, the words glaring at her. Perhaps routine wasn’t quite the correct term.

Kurt cleared his throat as he crouched beside the corpse, using a pen to twist the paper slightly. He cocked his head to the side, glancing at her as he gained¬†his feet. “Just what this city needs, a killer with a twisted sense of humor.”

Kate¬†crossed her arms over her chest. “I’ll admit. I found the note‚Ķodd.”

He chuckled. “Odd? It’s creepy as hell, though I think we both know the answer to his question. The way the throat’s been slit, the arcs of blood against the wall‚Ķthinking it wasn’t a hard choice for the bastard.”

“I don’t know‚Ķall that defensive bruising. The guy fought hard.¬†Could suggest reluctance on the part of our perp.”

“Or the killer’s¬†not as strong as he thought he was.”

Kate snorted, waving at the guy spread out across¬†the black asphalt. “The victim’s easily two twenty and those muscles aren’t fake. Thinking there aren’t many people who’d even consider taking him on. Lord knows, I wouldn’t want to have met him in a dark alley.”

“At least, not to fight.”

“Seriously, Kurt? The guy’s not even cold, yet.”

“But he¬†was pretty. Thinking guys like him would want that noticed, even under these circumstances.” He winked at her. “Especially by a sexier than hell cop.”

“That’s detective to¬†you, G-man.”

Kurt grinned, the simple gesture making her chest tighten. Damn, but the man was handsome. Shaggy brown hair, the perfect amount of scruff, and those eyes‚ÄĒso fucking blue it made her stomach flipflop. She’d had an¬†unfortunate¬†crush on the guy since they’d worked an assignment¬†together six months ago, and bumping into him every few weeks on any potential crossover cases only made the fire in the pit of her gut burn hotter.

She drew in a much-needed breath, turning to fully face him. “So, there something about this case I’m unaware of? A reason I’m going to have to play nice with the Bureau?”

Kurt placed his hand over his heart, the wind tousling his hair around¬†his face. “And here I thought you liked playing nice with me. That hurts, Kate.”

She did her best to ignore the way his¬†words curled over her flesh, making her skin bead as if he’d actually touched her. Damn, she shouldn’t react to him like this.¬†Especially when he’d never indicated he considered her to be anything more than a colleague. And a casual one, at that.

She glanced at the body again. “Is this where you tell me there’s a slew of other bodies just like this one scattered across the country? All with cryptic messages¬†that make your skin crawl? Which makes this whole mess¬†some¬†jurisdictional bullshit? Because honestly, if that note is anything indication on¬†what direction this case is going to take, I might be inclined to just hand it over to you.”

His expression sobered, the lines of his face becoming slightly harsher. He scanned the alleyway, motioning her to join him in a relatively unoccupied area off to their left. Kate followed after him, unsure whether it was curiosity or the inklings of fear making her stomach tighten. Or maybe it was just him. He stopped when he reached a dumpster, looking up and down the narrow road again before focusing on her. Those crystal blue eyes of his made her breath hitch, the intensity of his expression bordering on lethal.

She reached up, palming his shoulder. “Hey, you okay? You look like you just saw a ghost or something.”

“I was better before I got here.”

“Thanks, Kurt. Way to boost my fragile ego.”

He chuckled, leaning in dangerously close. His breath feathered over her cheek, rustling the wisps of hair that had pulled free from her ponytail. “Sweetheart, you’re the only silver lining in this whole damn mess.”

Her face heated as his jaw brushed hers as he eased back, palming the brick behind her head. The position virtually trapped her between him and the building, his chest grazing hers as she took a deep breath. She schooled her features, well aware he could see the red tinge to her cheeks as it faded down the vee¬†of her top. “Obviously, there’s something much deeper going on here than one creepy note and a dead body. So spill.”

Kurt tilted his head slightly, a hushed sigh sounding between them. “It’s complicated.”

“Everything with you is‚Ķcomplicated.”

He arched a brow. “I could say the same thing about you, but‚Ķ” He raked his free hand through his hair. “For the record, this isn’t the first body. Or the first note. There’s just one catch.”

“There always is.” She moistened her lips, quirking her mouth into a hint of a smile. “And‚Ķ”

“The truth is, this is the thirteenth¬†victim in a string of killings, all of which have the same MO¬†and the same type of cryptic note.”

“Thirteenth? Strange how I haven’t heard anything about it. Not so much as a bulletin over the wire. There a reason for that?”

“The murders began about sixty years ago. The killer seems to target fit, young males in their prime. There were six¬†deaths then nothing for about forty years. Then suddenly there’s six¬†more.¬†An¬†agent tied the two occurrences together, despite the first incidence being buried beneath¬†a bunch of high security red tape, but he was killed during the investigation. The Bureau pretty much back-burnered the whole thing¬†when the killings stopped as mysteriously as they’d begun. In fact, there hasn’t been another case‚Ķuntil now.”

“And you know all this how? I don’t see you as the cold case type.”

Kurt straightened, glancing at the body over his shoulder before staring down at her. “The agent that unearthed it all, who died twenty years ago, was my father‚Ķand I still have all his notes.”

“Shit.” She offered him an apologetic smile. “And sorry about your dad, though that explains a lot about you.”

“You’re, of course, referring to my dedication to the job.”

“I was going to use stubborn obsession, but‚Ķ” Kate pursed her lips, releasing a weary breath. “Sixty years? You realize that would make the killer at least eighty years old. No way someone that age killed this guy,¬†who could probably take on three attackers at once.” She arched a brow. “You thinking it’s some kind of pact? Continued by family members or friends or something?”

“From the notes my father has, he deduced it was the same killer both times.”

“No way. That would mean the guy was say twenty, then sixty. If the victims all resembled this guy in physique‚Ķthat’s a stretch.”

“Yeah, puzzling as hell. But, there’s the body. And there’s the note.”

“So you are taking over the investigation.”

Kurt sighed, closing his eyes for a moment before meeting her gaze. “Unfortunately, the Bureau isn’t quite ready to pull out all the stops. Seems they’ve done the math and come to the same conclusion‚ÄĒ”

“That the cases can’t be connected do to the length of time. The age of the perpetrator.”

He nodded. “They did give the go ahead to join the investigate if the detective in charge welcomed my help.”

Kate shook her head. “Something tells me I’m going to regret being on call tonight.” She offered him her hand. “Guess this makes us partners.”

He smiled. “Partners. I like the sound of that.”

“Yeah, well don’t get all warm and fuzzy just yet. I have a feeling neither of us is going to like where this leads.”

“My dad died trying to find justice. I’ll take this wherever it goes.”

“We can start with coffee and you’re buying. And I want to see those notes.” She pushed past him, heading for her car.

“Kate!”

She looked at him over her shoulder.

He gave her a genuine smile. “Thanks.”

“For what?”

“For having enough faith in me to give me a chance.”

“Faith is easy. Answers‚Ķmuch harder.” She turned away again, cursing the butterfly feeling in her stomach. He was right about one thing. She was more than willing to take this wherever it headed. She just hoped it didn’t end like his father’s case had.

 

And that’s all I have. Please check out the other ladies and see if they used this as a line or a scenario.

Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica Jarman  |  Paige Prince

Jessica De La Rosa  |  Kayleigh Jones  |  Kellie St. James

SAME OLE LANG SYNE

Welcome to 2016! I know, it was 2016 on Monday, but this is the first random Wednesday post of the year… and I’m here. First week back to school, and trying desperately to get my head straight and start making those goals a reality. Oh time, you are an elusive creature.

Anyway, this week it’s Remembering 2015‚ÄĒBest Memories.

Honestly, I’m lucky to remember last weekend, let alone most of 2015. And… now you’re all thinking I have a drinking problem, lol. Just a ‘short attention span and memory’ issue as of late. But I digress. Okay… so favourite memories of 2015…and maybe the odd pic to go with?

Getting my convertible. She’s used, but damn… what a fun summer riding around with the top down, tunes¬†playing. And one of the best of these memories… watching my two boys drive off in her, a kayak wedged in somehow, shades on, music playing… and it was midnight! (that’s a long ass story folks…one far too long for here, but OMG… it was the best. And a happy ending to what could have ended much worse for a friend’s daughter)

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Rediscovering hiking and realizing I need to do more of it. And at some point get back into mountaineering and rock climbing.

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Sydney’s amazing performance at the Syd William’s theatre for Canada Day. Partnered with her sister of another mother…Brynn

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Summertime runs. Perfect temperatures along the trails.

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Normally I’d say the annual June retreat with the ladies, but I had to miss it this year as my oldest son graduated… but damn, that will be one of the best memories FOREVER. Way to go, Kyle… so damn proud of you.

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But I did get a picture of the ladies on retreat by proxy… and I love it. They were probably at the Shop Co, don’t ya know… (said with their awesome Yupper accent. Not at all Canadian, eh)

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Mountain biking and actually conquering a double black diamond (with only one scar to show for it! ūüėÄ )

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Kyle getting hired by BC Hockey… youngest ref they have at 18.

Releasing FORCE OF NATURE. I know, but this book… this one is pretty damn dear to my heart.

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Another holiday season with the kids. They’re getting older and I know, sooner than I want, they’ll have their own families‚ÄĒtheir own trees and traditions. So… Christmas tree hunting with all three… we laugh, we freeze, we all want to kill Kyle by the time it’s over, but… magical.

I’m sure there are lots more I’ll think about later. The endless trips to Tim Hortons for a cup of steeped tea that has to get me through the day. The other aerial art shows, the hockey games… just hanging and watching movies. I’m starting to realize that most memories are memorable if you do it right. And that’s what I’m trying to aim for… the right stuff.

check out the other ladies and see what their fave times were.

 Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica Jarman  |  Jessica De La Rosa

Gwendolyn Cease  |  Kellie St. James  |  Paige Prince  |  Kayleigh Jones

A PICTURE’S WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS ~ JANUARY 2016

A new year, but we’re bringing back some of the fave topics from last year. And honestly, the flash fiction pieces are my favorite, for sure. Seeing how everyone interprets a picture or a song…and this year we’re adding some new twists. ¬†But our first for the year is a picture fiction, on a cool photo. Here’s the image and the resulting story…

And… I had nothing, so… I decided to continue from a much earlier song fiction. You can find it … HERE… if you’d like. Or, just read on.

01-2016 LightinForest

 

Nick kicked the door shut behind him, balancing his and Megan’s weight as he helped her shuffle inside the old cabin. She managed to get several feet in before collapsing against him, a muffled groan rumbling around him. He dropped the first aid kit he’d grabbed out of his Jeep then scooped her up, hating the way her head lolled against his shoulder‚ÄĒher eyes squeezed shut.

He headed for the single bedroom off to the right, placing her in the centre of the large bed. She grimaced, whimpering before seemingly passing out. He cursed, brushing her hair out of her face as he laid the back of his hand across her forehead. Warm, but not dangerously so, yet. With any luck, her wound hadn’t gotten infected.

He clenched his jaw. He’d stopped once they’d cleared the city, despite her protests, and had insisted on examining her side. She hadn’t met his gaze as he’d raised her shirt and removed the blood-soaked bandages, refusing to tell him anything regarding how she’d sustained the injury. Not that he needed any explanation. He knew a knife wound when he saw one. And hers had been deep. She’d finally allowed him to cover it in QuickClot, taping more gauze in place. She’d been quiet ever since, though he realized, now, she’d barely been holding on to consciousness.

“God damn Agency.”

He’d never truly trusted Jordan, or Rawlings, but…had they really held her prisoner for nearly three weeks? Orchestrated the entire sting operation without her knowledge just to screw him over? Megan had eluded to as much, but‚Ķ

“Fuck!”

He gently removed the bandages, wincing when she moaned. The wound looked as raw as before, but at least the bleeding had stopped. Mostly. He dapped at the laceration, doing his best to hold the edges together as he applied a row of Sterie strips. She grunted with every press of his fingers, the painful sound like jabs to his heart. He hadn’t thought he’d still care. Still feel this connected. After everything that had happened, he’d believed he’d buried his emotions. Buried his love for her. But just staring at the pale cast to her skin, the small twitch of her lips‚ÄĒhe hadn’t come close to shutting her out of his life.

Nick sighed, gaining his feet. He walked over to a small closet, grabbing a blanket off of one of the shelves. He laid it across her, tucking her in before heading back to the main area. He headed for the couch, collapsing on the worn cushions. He glanced at the far wall, a tilted photo catching his gaze. His brother had taken the picture just before he’d been posted overseas. Sun setting low, illuminating a pathway close to the cabin in a circle of yellow light. Made the trail look like a portal to some other world. It was also the last photo his brother had taken before‚Ķ

Nick closed his eyes against the sting. The damn picture¬†was a constant reminder of all he’d lost. All he’d hoped to have with Megan. But now‚ÄĒnow he was left trying to puzzle everything out. Deduce the truth amidst a sea of lies. He glanced at the bedroom, her body hidden beneath the patchwork quilt. If she’d truly been playing him, why had some ventured to the bar? Risked her own life when¬†she could have easily have disappeared. Left him and the Agency behind?

He relaxed back. Answers would have to wait until she regained consciousness‚ÄĒfelt strong enough to talk. And damn it, she was going to tell him everything. Why her partner had needed Nick to supply them with weapons. Why he’d lied about Megan’s involvement. Hell, what she’d been going to tell him at the restaurant. All of it. And then they’d figure out a way to fix the damn mess he’d made. Get the weapons back. Hell, get his old life back.

His gaze lingered on her silhouette. Truth was‚ÄĒthere was no going back. For either of them. He just hoped they both had a future that didn’t end in a pool of blood.

 

That’s all for me. I know… but hey, I had nothing, folks. Seriously, nothing. Now go check out the rest of the crew. A great showing this month… must be resolution time, lol.

Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica Jarman  |  Jessica De La Rosa

Kayleigh Jones  |  Paige Prince  |  Gwendolyn Cease