Saturday, August 16, 2014

The League of Old Men -- Part 2

The Eight Sentences:
 The sidewalk leading up to the street was broken and uneven. Grass and tall weeds made homes of the cracks. Poison ivy grew up the side of an exterior wall, rooted somewhere between a window and the brick veneer wall.
But the interior was another story.
Image copyright 2007 FCEtier
The floors were worn but clean. It was clear that the kitchen and dining area had been used recently and frequently. A mahogany bar hosted a row of bar stools from another era. The back counter was stocked with bourbon and scotch.
The American flag stood proudly with an eagle decoration atop the wooden staff.

The Back Story:
Last week's snippet was my first dealing with the League of Old Men. Today, we visit their meeting hall.
This will be my last excerpt on this eclectic group who will make their debut in my third book, A Year Without Killing.
These guys will turn up again in my fourth book, Transfer the Dragon. They will be joined in this adventure by the talented and feisty members of the Presidents Club.

Open call for writers:

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors. The 

same link will take you to the work of dozens of talented 

 Check out their work, too.  Here's the Facebook link for the

 Sunday Snippett group.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

The League of Old Men

Weekend Writing Warriors

The Eight Sentences:

I stumbled into their meeting hall.

As far as I was concerned, it had always been an urban legend.
The League Of Old Men was as real to me as a twenty-first century Illuminati.
You may have heard the legends, rumors, and stories yourself.
Events that at first seem unrelated and then, overnight, are connected by wing-nut conspiracy theorists.
Deals, deaths, and deniable dilemmas that mark the repetition of history through the decades.
The romantic stories of great loyalty, unshakable devotion, and a will that would make that of G. Gordon Liddy pale by comparison.
Former Hell’s Angels with a desire to preserve their culture,
Viet Nam veterans obsessed with a sense of justice usually reserved for vigilantes.
Maverick cops and detectives determined to execute appropriate sentences — with or without a judge and jury.

The Back Story:
My current work in progress, A Year Without Killing, introduces several new characters in the "Barry-Hixon Conspiracy" series of books. This recent blog (on my WordPress site) sheds light on a secret organization to which several of the new characters belong. Watch for more on the League of Old Men in future snippets.

Does your work fit?

There are some rules, but generally, the administrators are tolerant. From the rules on the WeWriWa site: " Then on  
Sunday, post 8 sentences from a current writing project, 

published or unpublished." 

          Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors. The 

same link will take you to the work of dozens of talented 


 Check out their work, too.  Here's the Facebook link for the

 Sunday Snippett group.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Meet Claudia Barry

Cindy A invited me to participate in a "Meet Your Character" blog hop. Cindy is the author of The Milk Carton Murders due out next spring. Meet Cindy and view her blog, HERE.

Now, Meet My Character:

1) What is the name of your character? Is he/she fictional or a historic person?
    Claudia Barry - fictional
2) When and where is the story set?
    Current times, eastern seaboard USA
3) What should we know about him/her?
    Readers meet Claudia in my first book, The Tourist Killer. She’s sixty-two years old and has successfully negotiated a career of over thirty years. Now she’s contemplating retirement and examining her life. What’s next for a professional assassin? Who do you retire? Her assigner convinces her to take a year sabbatical rather than retire outright. A Year Without Killing is the sequel and chronicles her time off.
4) What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life?
    Is retirement from this career any easier than retiring from the CIA or the mafia? How do you break away and stay alive? Claudia must now find a way to be at peace with herself so she can enjoy the rest of her life. As The Tourist Killer ends, she and her lover are in separate parts of the country and neither knows the fate of the other.
5) What is the personal goal of the character?
    Claudia wants to settle down with John Hixon and pursue life without the burden of being the harbinger of death to others.
6) Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?
    A Year Without Killing, my current work in progress is the third book in the Barry-Hixon series and is the sequel to my first book, The Tourist Killer. I participate most weekends in a blog hop, titled, “Weekend Writing Warriors” and most of the excerpts I publish for the next few months will be from AYWK. Catch up with Claudia and her exploits HERE.

7) When can we expect the book to be published?
    E-book and trade paperback versions should be available in the spring of 2015. A Year Without Killing will debut in serialized form, with two chapters per week in either late fall of 2014 or winter of 2015 on the publisher’s site, Venture Galleries.

To keep the meetings going, I'll tag:

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Distraction Enables Stealth

The Eight Sentences: 
Star closed her eyes and stretched her arms out in either direction to their full length. Then she leaned forward,  placed her hands on her ankles, and slid them up her legs. She clasped her hands and placed them in plain view on her knees. When she had returned to her previous position, she looked in the direction of the bar and Claudia was gone. That was impressive.
Claudia’s voice came from behind, “You do know how to give the impression that you’re not here as an adversary. You said you wanted my help, start talking.”
“I’d prefer to talk over dinner, or drinks, or both.”

The Back Story:
     Another excerpt from my third novel, A Year Without Killing (a WIP.) This scene picks up from a previous snippet found HERE.
Claudia is meeting with Star Braun who is trying to earn Claudia's trust during a surprise encounter. At the beginning, Claudia is standing behind the bar in her hotel room. Star gets a sample of Claudia's ability to steal about a room undetected.

But wait, there's more:

Looking for more viewers, readers, and contacts?

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors. The same 

link will take you to the work of dozens of talented writers.

 Check out their work, too.  Here's the Facebook link for the

 Sunday Snippett group.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Faces of Folkmoot - 2014

The "Fireman" from Hawaii, USA.

Folkmoot USA is North Carolina's official international festival. For over thirty years this organization has brought performers from around the world to dozens of venues in western North Carolina. 
Thousands of visitors descend upon Waynesville and the surrounding area to participate, volunteer, and enjoy the shows.

Each year, FCEtier Photography and Royal Flamingo Works, LLC present a slide show focused on the smiles and beauty of the performers, spectators, and volunteers. We proudly present the 2014 edition:

Thursday, July 17, 2014

A kiss in Harajuku

A girl is walking on the street in Harajuku, Japan.
She's disappointed that her boyfriend had other plans for the evening.
Without warning a stranger, a boy, rushes up to her and kisses her.
He disappears into the crowd.
Intrigued, she attempts to find him and in the bat of an eye, becomes entangled in a dangerous game.
A biologist has been murdered and a deadly virus is on the loose.

What a great premise for a novel. We're pleased to have Linda Hamonu join us as our guest blogger this week to introduce her latest book, Harajuku Kiss. Linda and I became acquainted due to our participation in the Weekend Writing Warriors project. Regular readers of these columns will be familiar with my photography, which is another interest in which Linda and I have in common. You can see some of her images HERE.

First, a bit about Linda and then an excerpt from Harajuku Kiss.
Welcome Linda!

Author bio:

Born in November 1983 in Brittany, France, Linda Hamonou spent a lot of time lost in Agatha Christie and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's novels. She entered university to study physics and obtained her PhD at Queen's University Belfast in 2009. Her studies allowed her to travel to Europe and America. She then moved to Japan and after three years doing research in Tokyo, she is currently doing a new postdoc in Sendai, Japan.


As I walked, I had the bizarre sensation someone was observing me. I could have run like Seiji, but it seemed impossible with my backpack.
On one hand, I always carried heavy stuff. Even when I wanted to travel light, I ended up with something unnecessary, like books I wouldn’t read or in this case my computer. I had been too lazy to bring it back home before coming here.
On the other hand, I was a terrible runner. Running made my jaws ache. Running in this street, I would for sure never reach the station, let alone escape someone. I decided to pretend I didn’t notice. It could be that old man again or just my imagination. I didn’t look back. I just dug my hands further in my pockets, if that was at all possible, and held tight on the memory stick. I needed to be more careful with it for sure. The old man knew I had it and other people surely did as well. I was afraid. I heard the steps of a man coming closer. I turned right, I was far from the station. The streets here were not so crowded anymore. I wanted to get somewhere with a lot of people. It felt safer, in the middle of people nobody would try anything.
It came from my left side. Someone pulled on my shoulder and quickly put his hand on my mouth, dragging me in the dark. I panicked using very disorganized movements to try and free myself from the grasp, not really knowing how to do it.
Would you stay quiet? I’ll free you if you promise to stay quiet?” It was the voice of the old man from earlier.
I tried to calm down and nodded. No matter, who he was, this time I was no longer afraid of running. He pushed me against the wall, still keeping his sweaty old hand on my mouth. It was salty and disgusting. I would never have imagined this old man could have such strength.
They are not people to take lightly,” he said as he took his hand away slowly.
I took few steps toward the exit. I didn’t want to stay in this dark alley with him. He was freaking me out even more than the feeling of being followed, but he pulled me back holding on my bag.
What do you think you’re doing?” I wanted to yell, but the fear made my voice sound like an inaudible whisper.
I had always wondered why some people wouldn’t yell while in danger, here was my answer: their voice was frozen. And unfortunately or fortunately, tonight, I was one of them.
Two men are following you,” he said.
I know that, thanks,” I answered.
You know it and you still walked in this empty street, are you insane?” he said shaking his head in disbelief.

Catch up with Linda here:

Saturday, July 12, 2014

I'll have a glass of chianti, please.

The Eight Sentences: 

Louella said, “Bye bye, now,” and lowered the receiver of her vintage 1963 telephone onto its cradle. She went into the kitchen and selected her favorite glass from the cabinet over the sink. One of these days, I’ll splurge and get a wine stem. This glass the Welch’s grape jelly came in is fine for now. She poured it half full of Bell’Agio Chianti, held it to her nose and looked back at the bottle. Hmm...vintage 2012. Oh well, two tears in a bucket.
By the time she was settled into her recliner, the glass was almost empty.

The Back Story: 
In this scene from my third novel (a WIP, A Year Without Killing) Mrs. Johnson is back at home after a mugging and purse snatching. She's safe but upset. She was the recipient of the good deed from Claudia Barry, mentioned in THIS BLOG a few weeks ago.

Want exposure?
 Looking for more viewers, readers, and contacts?

Join us here at Weekend Writing Warriors. The same 

link will take you to the work of dozens of talented writers.

 Check out their work, too.  Here's the Facebook link for the

 Sunday Snippett group.