Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Lacanto Project

Here is the snippet for Science Fiction and Fantasy Saturday. This is the opening scene of my novel, The Lacanto Project.  The Lacanto Project is a dystopian science fantasy for which I am actively seeking an agent/publisher. It is about an assassin who discovers that she is the genetic link necessary for the rise of a prophet in a dystopian world.


The evening began like any other work night. Dinner, wine and a pill. The food and drink were grand, but the tablet resting in Nashi’s palm gouged her heart and lessened her chances that this time she wasn’t expected to kill.

A dark shadow loomed over Nashi. Dressed in a sheer black tunic, she crouched on the canopy-draped bed and squeezed the pill, wanting to crush it to powder. It wouldn’t matter. He would only make her lick it up.

“What did she say?” Nashi asked Tamron, her mentor. She glanced at him through the thin veil that separated them, trying to avoid eye contact. She couldn't let him see her tears. Being Geo-1, her faction's best assassin, meant she should show no such sentiments, nor displeasure in receiving the current assignment.

Tamron buttoned up his shirt and readjusted the cape on his back, his black curls shading his cold eyes. He pushed the canopy aside and tossed a knife on the bed. “You might need that.”

Nashi's heart hit bottom. “I suppose this means we proceed according to her plan.”

He dropped her lubriskin on top of the knife. Yes, that’s exactly what it meant.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Finding Farber

Here is a snippet from my short story, "Finding Farber." 
"Finding Farber" was first published in EXCAPE VELOCITY: The Anthology, in 2011, and can now be read in SPECULATIVE JOURNEYS. This is the opening scene.


The early morning tram coming from East Park entered Station 12 ten minutes behind schedule. A lucky break for Banger Dunn. Debris flew into the air as the tram stopped, spattering Banger’s gray overcoat as he hurried to catch the rail-runner before it took off. He grabbed onto what was left of Farber’s arm and shoved him through the tram’s door. Covered with blood that might not be just Farber’s, Farber’s coat sleeve hung like a limp fire hose from his upper arm.

Banger thrust a token into the pockmarked metal depository at the front of the automatic tram and pulled Farber up from the floor. Farber's blood trailed behind them as they walked down the aisle. The tram moved onward, toward 39th street.

Banger shoved newspaper off the back seat and guided Farber into it, next to him. Farber's thin body trembled beneath the big overcoat her wore. Banger moved him closer. Then he noticed the kid, the only passenger on the tram, sitting six rows ahead, staring at them.

Friday, September 14, 2012


Below is my snippet for Science Fiction and Fantasy Saturday from my short story, "Europa."  "Europa" can be read in its entirety in SPECULATIVE JOURNEYS, and at Smashwords.

 "Lieutenant Cordelli, return to the Explorer with Lieutenant Clay in one hour.  That's an order.  We'll remain in orbit and prepare the shuttle for another surface landing.  We will not abandon Lieutenant Duval."

 One hour.

 Jouno perched himself on the edge of despair, the thought of leaving Europa, with Rylie alone beneath the ground, numbing him. The late afternoon shadows cast gloom across the landscape that not so long ago had mesmerized him by its uniqueness. Soon it would be dark. Above, he saw two sister-moons and wondered how much light they would reflect down upon him. 

He leaned toward the view-screen, his heart sinking into his gut. Rylie had opened the weird looking triangle and walked through it--and then she disappeared.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

911: A Day Worth Remembering

I remember that day. I was gathering items of clothing, placing them in a bag to take to goodwill. My daughter was with me, so little then, her fairy tale eyes saw no evil in the world. It was all about princesses and dress-up and barbie dolls. Dragon Tales was the episode of the morning.  Then I called my mother.
        "Are you watching the news?"
        I never watched the news that time of the day, but I switched channels and there it was: A burning tower. Shocked and unable to grasp what was happening, I became glued to the set, and to my friend and neighbor up the street whose husband was at that very time a pilot for USAir, on his way somewhere. I never witnessed such silence, stillness in the air.
        "Mommy, when are we leaving? Can we go to the park?"
        You know the rest of the story. My friend's plane landed, and he returned safely home a few days later. And we all went back to work, a little more fearfully.
         I knew in my heart that day that my children's world would never be the same. They continued to play as they always did not noticing the changes around them, or understanding the evilness behind the event.  And something sparked inside of me. An idea, a thought.
         It's not what people look like that defines a nation, it is how they live.
         It wasn't until a trip to Yellowstone National Park that I put that thought to words, and "The Yellow Stone" is the result. First published in 2006, "The Yellow Stone" is one of my many previously published short stories included in my anthology, SPECULATIVE JOURNEYS.
         To honor 911, I am having a FREE Kindle giveaway today and tomorrow. You may read "The Yellow Stone," as well as eleven other short stories there.
         This is a great nation we live in, and will continue to be.
         Get your FREE Kindle version of SPECULATIVE JOURNEYS by clicking on the title.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Excerpt from "Flight of the Hawk"

Gretchen met Phoeman at the immigration office five months before Sovereign Peterol came into power. He had been twelfth in line to see her among sixty-four passengers who arrived on Terrall from a foreign outpost. He wore baggy pants and a cropped shirt. His well-toned abdomen displayed a tattoo, which trailed down from his neck. Dark locks of hair dangled past his ears, and his digital eyes sparkled like black diamonds. His had been the fifth group of immigrants she had processed that morning. It was a tedious chore, and she did it with impatient indifference.
      She placed a new processing form on her desk as Phoeman approached. "Name."
     "Phoeman." His voice was deep and rich in dialect.
     "Last name, please."
     "Just Phoeman."
     She slid the form to him and offered him her ink pen. "Okay, funny man. Fill it out yourself. Have a seat. NEXT."