Rachel Thompson

Jack Canon's American Destiny

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Dark Corners by Theresa Ann Curnow

Dark Corners

I see them everywhere, in the shadows and from the corner of my eye and in the dark corners of the house. I try to be deathly quiet and not stare at them because I don’t want to see their faces any more than I have to. I’m scared that if I look too long at them, they will show me even worse images that will render me insane. They have terrible stretched, elongated grins and dead soulless eyes and an aura of complete emptiness about them that gouges my heart with desolation and makes me want to retch.

Sometimes they crouch in the shadows of doorways; sometimes I see them in passing cars, the shape of them black and fleeting, pressing against the glass, their mouths open in a frozen scream. They exist everywhere, in places that you don’t want to look and places that you can’t help but look. I often see them in the windows of shops, of houses, and I turn away quickly, my mouth tasting of ash and my heart bouncing around my chest like a prisoner trying to escape.

They exist mostly in dark corners though. They seem to like the darkness. They embrace it, and more than once I have seen the whites of those terrible dead eyes. I have the feeling that if I reach into that darkness I will become a part of it. It will creep up my flesh like goose bumps, like black viscous oil; devouring me until I am one of them, until I too crouch in dark corners and watch people like a voracious animal. They have a strange smell that only I seem to notice as I walk past them; like the ozone and wet coats and damp hair; like mothballs and old age and rotting weeds. It makes me gag all the time and when I do this in the street, people stare at me, their lips curling in barely disguised disgust.

I used to have a job, a girlfriend, friends, family and a decent life, but that is all gone now. People tend to evade you when you start to act strange, when you stare into corners and places at things others can’t see. At first they humour you. My best friend told me jokingly I needed to go to Spec Savers after I asked him if he could see the shadow in the corner of my living room. But then they become slightly irritated and perturbed. They have no idea what it is you’re talking about. They become slightly fearful because it’s not something that they understand or even want to think about, this apparent shift and descent into insanity, and so eventually they just stop taking your calls or coming to visit. They bury their guilt at abandoning you and carry on with their lives, and you’re left to unravel, to try not to stare at the corners of the rooms.

I used to be a writer. Sometimes, I was good and on occasion I was great but a lot of the time, I had to drag the words out painfully and then stick them onto the page, hoping that they made enough sense to earn me a pay-cheque each month. I used to write for a paranormal magazine in which I had a column called ‘Ghost of the Week’ and I wrote a short story each month too. But all that has changed now. Since all this started I haven’t been able to work, to write a single thing. Every time I try, I feel them watching me and my fingers stutter to a fearful halt like paralysed crabs.

In the very beginning I used to think that they only existed in my home but I soon realised that wasn’t true. They are literally everywhere and I can’t quite understand how more people don’t see them. I see people going about their daily lives - laughing, talking, walking, shopping and driving. They have cell phones clamped to their ears and children in their arms and shopping bags in their hands and dogs on leashes. They appear so normal. I long to go back to that, when all I had to worry about was how to pay the bills and whether I would ever make a name as a writer. People think I’m crazy now. They stare at me in the same way that I used to stare at those sorts of people who talk to themselves in the street. I know that I’m not crazy although I sometimes wish I was. I wish that I could wallow in the comforting cradle of insanity.

I’m not sure what t

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Genre – Supernatural

Rating – PG13

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Connect with Theresa Ann Curnow on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://teri-ann.weebly.com/index.html

hey are. At first, I thought they were ghosts but that idea was soon extinguished. They are like no ghosts I’ve ever heard of. Although I’ve never actually seen a ghost, I am fairly certain that they don’t hang around in the shadows and fixate their gaze on me like the eyes from a painting of Dante’s Inferno and I’m fairly sure that when they grin, they don’t have mouths like dark wide cracks filled with teeth that look like black needles.

It all started just after my latest bout of writer’s block. I had been trying desperately for weeks to come up with a decent story for the magazine with little results, and then a friend suggested hypnosis. I had a few sessions and the block began to lift and my creativity began to bubble and flow like a fast moving brook. Ideas and plots and characters began to rush into my brain all at once so that my head was crammed full. I wrote for hours on end, the many words too fast for my fingertips, the cursor flying across the computer screen. I wrote until my fingers cramped and my eyes drooped and vision blurred. In a week, I had written eighty thousand words and my mind was buzzing as if I had plugged it into an electric socket. That was when I saw something from the corner of my eye; a fleeting shadow, darting and fluid. I turned and caught the last vestiges of it, of its blurred, hellish face. I thought at first that I was hallucinating through lack of sleep and too much coffee, but over the days and weeks I kept seeing the shadows. I thought that insanity was picking at me, that my mind was abandoning me in the worst way possible, only I knew deep down that I was sane. I imagined that it was the house which was haunted, but that notion was destroyed when on venturing outside I saw them in the streets, loitering in doorways like ghostly dark tramps. The first time I just stopped and gazed at the doorway, mouth agape, heart pounding as the ebony shadow faded from view as though it had dragged a darker curtain across itself.

Keeper of Reign (Reign Fantasy) by Emma Right

Keeper of Reign

Books written in blood. Most are lost, their Keepers with them. A curse that befell a people. A Kingdom with no King. Life couldn’t get more harrowing for the Elfies, a blend of Elves and Fairies. Or for sixteen-year-old Jules Blaze. Or could it?

For Jules, the heir of a Keeper, no less, suspects his family hides a forgotten secret. It was bad enough that his people, the Elfies of Reign, triggered a curse which reduced the entire inhabitants to a mere inch centuries ago. All because of one Keeper who failed his purpose. Even the King’s Ancient Books, did not help ward off that anathema.

Now, Gehzurolle, the evil lord, and his armies of Scorpents, seem bent on destroying Jules and his family. Why? Gehzurolle’s agents hunt for Jules as he journeys into enemy land to find the truth. Truth that could save him and his family, and possibly even reverse the age-long curse. Provided Jules doesn’t get himself killed first.

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Genre - Young Adult Adventure Fantasy  

Rating – G

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Connect with Emma Right on Facebook & Facebook (Keeper of Reign)

Website http://www.emmaright.com/Home.aspx

Vicky Savage – Ten Things I’ve Learned About Being A Writer

Ten Things I’ve Learned About Being A Writer
by Vicky Savage
I’d like to share some pointers I’ve picked up since embarking on my journey as a writer:
“That can’t be!” you cry. But alas, it’s true. Writing the book is the easy part. Whether you’re and indie or traditionally published author, expect to spend a large chunk of time marketing your books. You’ll find many aspects of it can be fun. Accept it as part of the process and enjoy!
An “Author Platform” is simply your internet presence, your visible “brand.” It’s what readers will find if they Google you, and it’s the way to develop a fan base. Generally, a platform consists at a minimum of a website, Facebook Fan Page, Twitter account, blog, and, optionally, accounts on LinkedIn, Pintrest, Google+, and/or Instagram. Don’t panic.It’s not as daunting as it sounds and it can be built over time.
The good news: being a writer is great fun and there’s no dress code! The bad news: you actually have to do the work. Make a schedule and try to write at the same time and for several hours each day. Don’t answer the phone, check your email, or raid the refrigerator. You’ll be amazed at how much you get done.
It’s unavoidable. Every writer experiences bouts of self-doubt every now and again and for no apparent reason. It’s an occupational hazard like black lung disease (only worse).The best way to handle it is to recognize it’s temporary. Focus on your accomplishments,read a piece of amazing writing, polish the chapters you’ve already written, call a friend who can be trusted to talk you off the ledge. Just relax until it passes.
“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write.” – Stephen King. I find reading invaluable for three reasons: it keeps me current in my genre; it keeps my writing sharp; and it’s a relaxing break from writing. Actually, I feel like I’m still working whenever I’m reading a good book, because I’m observing another author’s style, plot development, character growth, etc.
They say you’re not a real writer until your first bad review. Regardless, it stings like hell. Learning to shrug off a bad review is essential to surviving in this industry. Maybe the reviewer just didn’t get your book, or didn’t really read it. Sometimes, though, the reviewer has a valid point, in which case we need to take our medicine, no matter how foul tasting, and try to benefit from it. My recommendation: grow some Rhino skin.
The best advice I ever received as a writer is: “Do whatever it takes to get that first draft completed.” Don’t worry about how inane or ugly it is. You can fix it later. It goes against our perfectionist tendencies, but it really works.
I’m constantly amazed at how much I learn every day just by reading other writers’ blogs, participating in author forums, or listening to readers. Remember, even after you fearlessly claim the title “Writer,” there’s always room for improvement.
Vocabulary and grammar are both important to writing, but rules of grammar are broken more often than they’re observed in novel writing, especially where dialogue is concerned. I do little things every day to expand my vocabulary. Grammar I leave to the editors.
Enough said!
Transcender First-Timer
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Genre - Science Fiction/Fantasy/Paranormal/YA
Rating – PG13
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Connect with Vicky Savage on Facebook & Twitter

Nadine Ducca – Twitter Hashtags for Writers

Twitter Hashtags for Writers

By: Nadine Ducca

In August 2012, I opened a Twitter account…and since I had no idea what I was doing, I did very little. I used it to post my thoughts, and to post links to whatever I had recently published on my blog. For about two months, I hovered between 16 and 18 followers. Nobody cared what I had to say. Even I didn’t care, and I was very close to abandoning Twitter and forgetting about the whole thing.

Fortunately, instead of giving up I decided to seek advice on how to revamp my account. This guest post by Richard Stephenson had all the info I needed to kick start Twitter: Indie Author’s Guide to Twitter. I can’t recommend it enough!

The main advice is to have interest in others. Building relationships is the funnest, most rewarding, and probably most difficult part of Twitter. To build relationships with other writers and readers, first you have to find them. And how do we do that?

With hashtags.

A hashtag is a word or string of words without any spaces or punctuation, preceded by the pound sign (#), sometimes also called a “hash.” They are links you can click on to see all the recent tweets posted under that tag.

Hashtags classify tweets by topic. Jumping from one hashtag to another is like wandering from one chat room to another.

Identifying Hashtags

Most hashtags are self-explanatory, such as #amwriting or #selfpub, but what happens when you don’t understand a hashtag? What the heck do #asmsg and #ian1 mean? I used to see these all the time and wonder what they were about. When in doubt, you can always refer to Tagdef. On this site, simply write in the unknown hashtag, and check the definition:

#asmsg is Authors’ Social Media Support Group : A Talented Group of Independent Authors from Around the Globe Offering a Diverse Collection of Books.

You might not find every single hashtag, but Tagdef is a good place to start. What’s more, if you know the meaning of a hashtag, you can always add it to the database and help out others.

Below you’ll see a list of 30 popular hashtags for writers. You’ll find hashtags to connect with other authors and readers, to share and ask for advice, to find inspiration and to promote your work. Each hashtag in the list is a hyperlink to the Twitter search page. Just click on your hashtag of interest to see what people are saying now.

Tip: once you have the hashtag in your Twitter search box, and if you like what you see, save the search. That way, you’ll get a drop-down menu of all your saved searches each time you click on the search box. This is very useful for forgetful people like me!








#book also #books

#CampNaNoWriMo Active during the Camp NaNoWriMo months (varies).

#NaNoWriMo Active during November.

#followFriday also #FF Promote interesting Twitter users.



















#writingprompts also #writingprompt

If you liked this list of hashtags, check out 40 More Twitter Hashtags for Writers on my blog!

Are there any other hashtags you use to connect with other writers? Share your comments below! Oh, and feel free to connect with me on Twitter @NadineDucca!

Serving Time

Life and death have been industrialized. The Forge, the birthplace of every soul, is a rumbling factory owned by the goddess Time, managed by Lucifer, and powered by the labor of demons and imps. In this dystopian world, a renegade interplanetary pilot running from his past doesn’t stand a chance.

Handling Neptunian meth and dodging security cannons are all in a day’s work for Tristan Cross—not that he’s one to complain. Working for the smuggling company StarCorp is an improvement over what he used to do for a living.

However, when StarCorp gives Tristan a one-way ticket into the brainwashed—and disturbingly suicidal—Loyal League, he decides to run from the company and start a new life in the only safe haven he knows: Earth. With the help of his brother, Tristan embarks on the most hazardous journey of his life, one that will place him at Time’s mercy. Little does he know the demons running the universe are craving a feast, and his own soul is the next item on the menu.

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Genre – Science Fiction/Fantasy

Rating – Adult

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Connect with Nadine Ducca on Facebook

Website http://nadineonwriting.blogspot.com/