Tuesday, May 20, 2014

WEP - Failure Or is it? A Crossroads

This month's WEP fiction continues a previous entry from March, with an excerpt:

Part 1 - My Eyes Don't Lie, Do They?

It is written:  We were the last ship of twelve that departed together from our dying planet. Our ships could go no further by the time we arrived at this cluster of rocks, as our onboard systems were starting to fail. Ship's historian, SRS-1 Colony

Asteroid Images, Science NASA

The log entry was signed and dated one month after the asteroid colony was established. As I left the library viewing room, I heard someone call, "Wait up, Dak!"

I know that voice. He's the only person that agrees with my ideas. Both of us want to escape this place one day. First, we need a map. . .then, we need to hide aboard a seeker transport.

"Hi Rafe! I've got training duty for this time block. Can we meet after that?"

"You haven't heard the news then, have you?"

"What news?" My heart jumped.

End of part 1


Part 2 - A Crossroads

"We're getting visitors. Two humans from the planets. . .our Rangers on patrol found them on the surface of asteroid AC89."  

"Found them? Were they lost?"

"They were collecting crust samples. Didn't even have their guns activated when they were approached. It's what saved them though, the two Rangers knew they weren't pirates."

"I can't believe a spacer wouldn't have his gun ready. Are they here?"

"No, they aren't prisoners. In two shifts time, the news alert said they are coming back. This will be our best chance to stowaway, while everyone attends the welcoming ceremony. The visitors have to leave their ship somewhere on Landing level."

"But they'll have guards, Rafe. Armed guards."

"Are we going to do this or not? You getting scared?"

"I'm not scared. We'll do it."

WEP - monthly bloghop

Two workshifts later, the strangers returned and were taken to be presented to the leader of the colony. The honor guards appointed to accompany the visitors followed the colony delegation as it left. 

Later . . .

On the edges of Landing level, we keep to the shadows as we look for the ship which delivered the visitors. Our black surface suits make us nearly invisible. We only have a certain amount of time to get inside and find a place to hide. Crouching, we move along the hanger walls, stopping when we reach the flyer. Its flat black body seems to disappear in the darkness, built for stealth and accented with a thin blue line which ended in a 'V' on the main entry hatch. One day, I'm going to pilot a beauty like that. 

Rafe interrupted Dak's thoughts and motioned him to move on. Workers and maintenance 'bots would report for duty soon. Then, a sound off to their right, a faint whirring noise. They dropped to their knees behind the side of the ship as a guard-bot went trundling past. It never paused.

"You go first and signal when you're inside. Make a noise, something I can hear over the suitcom."

"Okay. You won't back out?"

"Never. Blood-honor swear."

Rafe slipped in the side cargo door, and was out of sight as he looked for hiding places. Dak took one last look around and was about to follow when a gloved hand grabbed his shoulder. His heart pounded against his chest. Caught. Rafe is going to think I didn't follow . . .

"Just hold on there, young man. This is my ship. Do you make a habit of entering someone else's spaceship uninvited?"  One of the visitors towered over Dak, clad in a surface suit different from any Dak had ever seen. It was white. Stark white.
Sweat trickled down the back of Dak's neck inside the fitted head cover of his own black surface suit.

"Well? Can you hear me?"

"Yes, sir, I've never done this before, just talked about it. I'm Dak. We didn't want to steal nothing, we wanted to hide on your ship to get away from here. . ."

"You want to get away from here? Isn't this your home?" The man in the white surface suit released his hold on the boy, as he could see Dak wasn't going to leave his friend.

"We hate it here. Me and my friend Rafe.  He's inside your ship wondering where I am. . ."

"What about your family?"

"Don't have any family. They died in a pirate raid a long time ago."

"I'm sorry to hear that, Dak. I'm Morgan, and I grew up as an orphan, just like you. I lost my parents when I was young. Too young to remember them. I know what it feels like. I remember that I wanted to leave my home planet when I was your age. Because of that, I'm going to give you a second chance and not report this 'exploration', on two conditions."

"We won't be sent to detention jail?"

"I'd prefer not to, but it's up to you. If you agree to finish your training and become one of the Rangers, I'll say nothing. Some Rangers are pilots, some aren't. Next time I come, I'll be bringing someone important that you might want to meet. He's a scientist ."

"You mean it? Can I tell my friend inside? He's probably thinking I left him . . ."
"Please ask him to join us."

"Rafe, come out of the ship, it's ok. There's been a change of plans, and there's a new friend I want you to meet."

The path of two young boys, aged 9 and 10 had just diverted to loftier ideals.

End of Part 2. There will be a Part 3.


Have you had to make a Crossroads type of decision? Did you have a role model when you were younger? Have you heard of the WEP blogfests?

Please leave a comment to let me know you were here, and thanks for dropping by! I'll respond.

Would you like to challenge yourself? Try Write...Edit...Publish!

Join us for a monthly signup and some very interesting reading. It's flexible. I joined the once-a-month bloghop since it meets my needs. I've also met fellow bloggers with the same penchant for responding to Denise's challenges. WEP makes me practice short writing. It's a good way to start story ideas, too.


Write…Edit…Publish! aka WEP welcomes you to submit any of the following – flash fiction, poetry, non-fiction or playscripts to a word count of 1,000 words – artwork and photographs accompanied by your written inspiration in creating your work/s.

Next Challenge: June - Romance
Owner/Originator: Denise Covey at her website.

Denise's WEP Site:


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Her Bones are in the Badlands - Action! Camera!

Roland Yeomans' novel is the latest I've read from my eTBR file (the virtual stack), and a good followup on the Sam McCord stories. It's about The Industry, aka the movie industry, in the early days of Hollywood. The Badlands are dry, barren, windblown rugged, and formerly the home of the Navajo and Lakota tribes.

 A movie on location in the Badlands will see it's usual expectations shelved when an evil that lurks unseen is called. . . the air is charged with apprehension, all the actors are spooked. Something isn't quite right, but the guy in charge, Durand / McCord, can't determine what. A body is found, attacked by something inhuman. Signs of an old enemy increase the stakes. The search begins. . .

What is hiding in the Badlands, in the places the tribes don't go, the places where strange shapes are seen and things disappear? Will McCord find it before IT finds them? Meilori makes a grand entrance with Tesla, and with a few henchmen, they prepare for the fight with the Darkness, an entity worse than the Soyoko.

A quote from McCord that is priceless: "When you are young in West Texas, everyone seems to want to stick you with a knife, from Apache to cowhand." (That would be the early 1800s if McCord was born in 1799.)

An excellent cast for the movie in the book: Tom Mix, Marlene Dietrich, David Niven, Errol Flynn, and others, is balanced by the cast from the world of Sam McCord: Meilori, Elu, Tesla, Wolfe and the Sheriff. Delighted to see his love, Meilori beside him and Elu's surprise appearance, McCord is ready to do what must be done - ever the Texas Ranger. The confrontation with the danger must be met by Sam alone. . . against the entity hiding in the cave. An entity with unknown capabilities.

This story looks at several issues in an industry that has grown from silent movies to fantastic effects in film. I couldn't help comparing it to the Fitzgerald story, The Last Tycoon. Why? Both take place on movie set locations, both involve a director keeping a secret from most of the cast and crew. While one is concerned with weird happenings and murders at the location, the Fitzgerald book is concerned with unions and their effect on the creativity of directors and the industry. Both stories are nostalgic for a time in films that seemed golden. Both directors act as father figures for others. I enjoyed both novels.

Check out the other books Roland has written at his site, Writing in the Crosshairs, and see what a fantastic selection is available. For reviews of some of Roland's other novels, check the Book Review tabs at the top of my blog. I've reviewed them on Amazon as well.

Are you familiar with Roland's novels?  Have you read Her Bones are in the Badlands? or Fitzgerald's The Last Tycoon? If you have read Roland's novels, do you have a favorite story? Who is your fave character?

Please leave a comment to let me know you were here, and thanks for stopping by! I'll respond.


Writing in the Crosshairs - Roland's Blog


Thursday, May 1, 2014

Alphabet Recollections 2014 - A to Z, In Brief

The 2014 A to Z Blog Challenge is Over. . . and I can claim another badge. My theme was ART - Artists, Art Trivia, Art Legends.

Thanks to all those new and ongoing visitors, commenters and new followers who happened by this blog during the Challenge! Kudos to the Co-host Teams, Lee at 'Tossing it Out', and the participants at the A to Z site, who kept the challenge alive and healthy! For a blogfest as big as this, the support from commenters is a major part of what makes it fun.

My takeaways from the 2014 A to Z Blog Challenge: 

-schedule posts
-research prior to April
-pace the visiting and working on own posts
-follow a series I like (or several)
-post early in the day

That's what works for me. I hope you had a good time. I did, but now I'm back to my usual blogging schedule, writing and tackling those books in the e-TBR, the tangible TBR, and my two wips.


UPDATE: Links list, top of page under the ART AtoZ tab
May 10/14

How about you? Had enough of daily posting? Are you taking a break? Or jumping back in?

Please leave a comment to let me know you were here, and thanks for dropping by. I'll respond.