Category: "Announcements"

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2012-12-16

  11:07:29 am, by

Just Released - Shadow Dancing

 

My paranormal short story Shadow Dancing is now available from Smashwords and Amazon.com.

Shadow Dancing is the story of Ralph, who has somehow lost his shadow. At first he doesn’t worry much about it. Until he realizes his shadow is living a much better life than he is…including romancing the girl next door.

Gabrielle is having unusual dreams…only to discover those dreams are much more than figments of her imagination.

 

Excerpt from Shadow Dancing:

Only a dream, what possible harm could it do? No one's going to know, Gabrielle’s sleepy mind promised.


She watched the familiar shadow flow over the windowsill and stretch across her bedroom. She'd worn her best negligee to bed. The shadow seemed to know what she needed. Stretching out across the queen-sized bed, Gabrielle let the darkness claim her.


* * *


The sun crested the fence in his neighbor's yard, spilling yellow light across the lawn. In a moment the dawn would reach his east-facing window. Ralph yawned in spite of the carafe of coffee it had taken to keep him up all night. He had no intention of falling asleep now. Not when victory lay within his grasp.


Sunlight leaked over the windowsill and across the carpet. Ralph pinched himself to stay conscious. Then, like a negative image of the pale light, crept a dark, man-sized shape.


First ten black fingers gripped the window ledge. Ralph watched as the image of his own steel-toed work boot cleared the window and found its footing on the carpet inside.


Ralph closed his eyes, feigning sleep and watched through the fringe of his lashes.


Another leg, followed by a torso and finally a head as the shadow straightened. Ralph recognized the folds of his own uniform in the shadow's outline against the brightly-lit carpet.


Its head turned, casting a furtive glance in his direction. How many times had he lain there unknowing as his shadow crept back to him like an errant lover? Well, not this time. Ralph forced his chest to rise and fall, mimicking the even breathing of sleep.


His shadow eclipsed the sun as it seeped across the carpet like an ink stain. Ralph waited.


And then he felt it. A momentary tingling. A sudden loss of the sun's warmth as his shadow leaned over him and merged with his body.


Ralph whirled, twisting the covers as he turned face down and gazed at the inky shadow against his white sheets.


"I know where you've been!" Ralph growled. He gripped the edges of the pillow, pale skin meeting shadow, his own outline contorted.


There was no answer, not that he could hear. Yet a mocking laughter rang in his mind.


Just what are you going to do about it, Ralphie?

2012-12-12

  12:52:11 pm, by

Dark Dreams - Now Available

 

Dark Dreams is now available from Smashwords and Amazon.com.

 

A gardener battles a vampire pumpkin…

A medical photographer discovers a strange, parasitic life force …

An old furnace develops a taste for warm-blooded, living things…

A weekend at a remote cottage turns into a desperate fight for survival…

A driver on the edge of exhaustion hits something far more terrifying than he could ever imagine…

Dark Dreams includes stories : PunkinHead, Bio Hazard, The Furnace Man, Long Weekend and Miles To Go.

 

 

 

2012-10-07

  12:17:27 pm, by

Long Weekend

 

 

In the spirit of October and Halloween and seeing as it’s a long weekend, here is an excerpt from a spooky story aptly titled Long Weekend. The inspiration for this paranormal short came from an unsettling weekend spent in a lakeside cabin.

Long Weekend is the story of Paige and her friends who think that a weekend at a remote cottage is the perfect party opportunity. But as night falls, the forest comes alive with terror. And the group suddenly finds themselves in a desperate fight for their lives.

Long Weekend
is now available from Smashwords and Amazon.com.


Excerpt from Long Weekend:

Like the soundtrack to a film suddenly snapping, the loon’s cry died. In the dull quiet crickets fell mute, even the constant buzz of mosquitoes ended. Paige cast a glance behind her at the lake and caught a glimpse of a black bank of cloud blowing in across the lake, moving rapidly toward shore.

Not clouds, she realized with a sudden, inexplicable pang of dread. It was as if a dark filter slid between the ground and the sky. Only this filter had the consistency of thick velvet, and it seemed to transform everything in its path.

The welcoming coolness of the lake now gleamed like black oil, licking hungrily at the jagged edges of the shore, eager to suck anything fool enough to venture close into its thick smothering depths. Nothing moved. Not even the wind’s warm breath stirred the trees. Not even a ripple on the inky black water of the lake. Not a sound, until...

Ground rumbled beneath her, low and deep, pulsating just below hearing range. A breeze began to mutter through the trees. Branches gnashed together. Hot panting breath gusted over her bare shoulder.

Woods stretched out before her like the gutted husk of a vast, burned-out mansion. Gnarled and twisted corridors led only into deeper shadow.

Darkness seeped closer, like thick, spilled paint. A trickle of terror snaked down her spine. In some deep recess of her mind, she realized she was still standing rooted to the dock in mindless terror over a stray gust of wind. But a more primitive level of consciousness hollered at her to run. All the way back to the city if necessary. Something evil blew in across the water. She didn’t intend to wait around and discover what it was.

Paige bolted up the wooden steps, now slick with dew. Suddenly she was flailing in midair before crashing down painfully onto a lower step. Denim tore. Wood and rock grazed the skin beneath. Keys in the pocket of her jeans dug into her side. A hoarse scream wrenched from her throat, hollow sounding in the silence that smothered the hill.

Sliding backward, she floundered for a grip, finding ground beneath her stinging palms. Coarse tendrils of grass wound through her fingers. Roots grasped for a hold on her flailing feet. She scrambled to her feet. Heedless of slivers, she seized the wooden railing and propelled herself toward the cottage at the top of the stairs.

2012-09-28

  02:33:16 pm, by

And Not A Drop To Drink Reprinted in Blood & Water

 

 

 

I'm excited to announce that my short story And Not A Drop To Drink has been reprinted in the anthology Blood & Water edited by Hayden Trenholm.

The idea for And Not A Drop To Drink came to me when I saw a pair of shoes lying by the side of the road, as if the person they belonged to had simply vanished. This story is one possible explanation...

Blood & Water is now available from Bundoran Press.

 

2012-09-18

  11:19:51 am, by

In the Eye of the Beholder - Now Available!

 

 

 

My vampire story In The Eye of the Beholder is now available from Smashwords and Amazon.com.

This paranormal short is a bit of different take on the woman meets vampire story...

 

As a medical photographer, Angel Connor has seen some strange things… But nothing prepares her for meeting the hospital’s newest patient. At first she feels sorry for the suffering man. Until she ventures too close to his stretcher and discovers he’s a vampire.

Cedric Prys just wanted a meal of the hot and bloody variety. Ending up in the hospital wasn’t in his plans, but the medical photographer is looking quite scrumptious…

Now that his indiscretion has been caught on film, he has no choice but to flee, taking an unwilling hostage with him.


Excerpt from In the Eye of the Beholder:

North America, 1993…

The subject hadn't moved in the last ten minutes. Not so much as a twitch or a blink.


Angel Connor thought of the hours of videotape editing awaiting her, and wondered if she might leave the camera long enough to poke at the contact lens that felt like it was stuck to her eye with glue.

He didn't sweat, didn't so much as breathe. A lock of raven hair drifted casually across his forehead. She fought the sudden compulsion to reach out and brush it aside.


Now where'd that come from? He was like any other patient, except this particular subject had landed himself in a file marked "strictly confidential".

Briefly, she wondered what he'd done. Gone crazy and shot someone. Maybe he had some new exotic kind of disease. Whatever he had, he was robbing her of her weekend.

But as her boss, the chief medical photographer was fond of saying, "medical science doesn't keep office hours".

Secured by leather restraints, he lay motionless on the gurney, giving every indication he was dead. Satisfied he was going nowhere, she straightened, squirted her contacts with saline, and tucked a lock of scarlet hair behind her ear.

The subject shivered and opened his eyes. Eyes of dull, incomprehensible pain. Even through the viewfinder, she couldn't look away from those midnight blue eyes.

Medical photography was a kind of voyeurism into other people's pain, she reflected. A sick way to make a living, they joked in the office.

Two hours later her hopes for Saturday night had all but disintegrated.

The doctors were conferring again in hushed tones behind the glass enclosure. She donned the headphones, ready for the commentary.

He flinched as the thermometer touched his ear. It beeped. Angel zoomed in for a close up.

"Twenty-two degrees centigrade," the doctor proclaimed and proceeded to update the rest of his vital signs.

Twenty-two degrees? That couldn't be right. Shouldn't they do something? IV, CPR? Guy could be dying. But the specialists seemed unconcerned, fascinated even.

As though an invisible director had suddenly shouted 'action!' the patient came to life. He writhed and twisted on the gurney, desperately trying to free himself from the restraints.
Give him something! His moans of agony made her squirm.

One of the physicians approached, a bag of blood in his hand. Finally! she thought, then, Wait a minute… No IV pole, nothing.

She tightened the shot for the record as much as her own curiosity.

"Is this what you want?" the doctor was asking.

The patient stilled. His eyes followed the blood bag with acute interest. Red tinged the irises.

"Just cooperate with us and you can have all the blood you need," the hematologist said.

But the patient merely bit his lip and turned his face away.

They were whispering again in the observation room. Four of them this time. Her eyes burned and her bladder ached, but no one was taking a break, so she kept taping.

He was watching her when she looked up. Watching her with sad, anguished eyes.

Why don't they just give this guy what he needs. Drugs, whatever. The medical staff seemed content with their methodology, and the subject seemed just as content not to cooperate, whatever that meant.

This time they had the blood in a plastic hospital cup. Angel watched as he sniffed at it. The doctor pressed it closer. A moan of desperation escaped the patient's lips. But he shut his eyes and kept his jaw clenched shut.

The medical staff regrouped to update their strategy.

Angel studied the patient carefully. Dark curls lay plastered to his forehead. Deep shudders racked his body. The blue eyes flecked with red held all the pain in the world. She couldn't stand to look at those eyes, couldn't…

She was across the floor before she'd realized what she was doing. The leather restraints were slick with sweat and hard to undo.

"Hey!" someone yelled.

A hand grabbed her wrist.

Face down on the cold tile, she was seized, pinned. Something impossibly sharp tore into the back of her knee. She tried to cry out, but she was strangled by pain. Not the feeling of ecstasy the horror movies promised. It felt like suffocating. Like being sucked down into quick sand.



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