Old Barney was the nickname for the lighthouse near the northern tip of Long Beach Island. It was over two hundred years old. The lighthouse was the subject of many stories. It figured prominently into local history. Adjacent to it, a museum helped illustrate that history and that of the Jersey Shore. That’s where I left Jennifer and the car. It was for the best. I didn’t want to put her or Kara in any danger. With that thought in mind, I turned my thoughts inward to my guardian angel. Continue reading
The fighting had ended long ago. Even so, it took Ula time to work up the courage to leave her house. Looking at the scene, she wished she hadn’t. The street had been transformed into a battlefield, littered with the dead. Some of the bodies didn’t have a mark on them. Others had been sliced apart. A few looked like their skin had sloughed off.
Standing amid the carnage was Danr. He didn’t seem any worse for wear. The man still wore his battered leather hat. No blood stained his storm gray coat or the dark clothing he wore underneath it. The sword in his hand glowed a pale blue. Its radiance cast its wielder in a malevolent light, making the brand seared into his cheek stand out that much more.
I spent the last two weeks of August traveling. It gave me a chance to spend some time with friends. As usual, I was in Atlanta for Labor Day weekend and DragonCon. This year, I changed things up a bit. I didn’t do any panels or attend the big photo shoots. There was no rushing around to make events or attend meet and greets. Instead, I took it easy and relaxed. It gave me a chance to reconnect with friends. The last night of the con, I watched the Masquerade with my friends in the comfort of our hotel room. All in all, I had a fun time this year and plan on going again next year even if I feel like I need a vacation to recover from my trip.
Now that I’m back home, I gave some thought to my chosen career and writing. I haven’t been happy with some of the longer stories I’ve been working on. It’s not that the stories are bad. They’re merely okay and that’s not good enough for me. Maybe I’m being silly? I have this idea that any book I publish has to be better or at least as good as the last one I published. I always want to go forward. Publishing something that is okay or serviceable would be a step back. That’s why I have yet to publish anything new this year. That said, I made some progress on a story that I have a good feeling about. In the meantime, I’ll continue to post flash fiction and short stories as time permits.
Until next time.
The verdict is always the same. Outrage sparks in the gallery. The judge bangs his gavel, calling for order. Bailiffs remove people from the court room. There were sure to be demonstrations and protests in the street. How did it come to this? Is justice really blind? Does the fault lie with the system or the jury? One look around the court room and I have my answer.
As you can see, I’m back. I’m sorry for being away but these last few months have been pretty rough. Without going into details, it’s been one crisis after another. The result was that I had little time or energy to post here. Thankfully things have changed for the better. I don’t know how active I’ll be but I’m going to make an effort to post on a regular basis. You’ll keep seeing more flash fiction and much longer stories featuring characters from my books. As for when the next book will be released, that’s going to come down to money. I’m not about to release and publish an unedited book. That means it’s going to be a few months at least before The Court of the Two Sisters and the other books I’ve managed to finish will see the light of day. Anyway, have a great weekend and take care.
Is this the time? Is this the place? It could be. Is this the right cause? That question is harder to answer. A fight, here and now, meant risking everything. It had to be worth it. The war is more than one battle. Generals understood that. They urge us to keep our powder dry and to pick our moment. Some of those hunkered down next to me heed their words while others throw themselves into the fray. I pick my shots, sniping at targets of opportunity, until the enemy rises from hiding. That’s when everything changes. Lit by torches and emboldened by reckless hate, their standards represent the blood of innocents spilled for their cause. There is no longer any doubt. I rise, along with all the others and charge forward. Fighting against evil is always worth it, no matter the risk.
The wall towered over me. It had protected me from dangers, real and imagined, but that safety came at a price. I was isolated and alone. As I surveyed my handiwork, I spotted an imperfection. A small crack had appeared. Through it, sound was able to penetrate the weathered stone. Amid the screams of terror, cries of intolerance, and all the things I had fled, there were whispered words of hope. Could I find camaraderie and friendship, free of my self-imposed exile? Was the chance for something more worth the risk of venturing out into the world again? I pick up my tools, still unsure of whether I want to expand or fix the crack in the wall.