Postmortem ~ An Excerpt from Jagerund

Some of you may have read this before,but I want to announce the publishing of  the followup to my short story, ‘The Death of Marcus Wells’ on my own blog. This piece of flash fiction is both the epilogue to my published short story and an excerpt of the novel I am working on titled ‘Jagerund’. Please enjoy!

It was late when Emily tiptoed into the room. Unlike most of the other rooms in the abandoned monastery, this one was well-lit. Several oil lamps surrounded the table on which the corpse laid and pushed back the darkness that seeped from the stone walls.

Marcus’ back was to her, his shaggy light coloured hair hung over his eyes as he bowed his head toward the table. So engrossed in his work was he that didn’t notice her enter. His forceps moved methodically, gently separating the human flesh from the parasite that had infiltrated the now deceased body.

She cleared her throat gently. Read more->

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Legends and Lore an Anthology of Mythic Proportions – Blog Tour

Legends and Lore: An Anthology of Mythic Proportions

Delve into myth and legend, where the Fates force post-modern man into a world of the unknown—a world long since dismissed as ignorant superstition.

The Brother-Sister Fable by Alyson Grauer: a young boy disappears into a realm where only his sister can follow.

Faelad by Sarah Hunter Hyatt: Claire Whitaker didn’t even know she was Irish, let alone The Morrigan, the goddess of war.

By Skyfall by Emma Michaels: a mer-couple from Atlantis find themselves in the middle of a human murder investigation.

Charon’s Obol by. R. M. Ridley: Jonathan Alvey didn’t believe in gods, until he helps a lost child find her all-powerful parents.

Peradventure by Sarah E. Seeley: a jinni must choose between the woman he loves and destroying the city that persecuted her.

Natural Order by Lance Schonberg: when Carlos Vasquez is kidnapped, he discovers powers within himself to change the world.

Two Spoons by Danielle E. Shipley: A little girl’s soul meets its match in the family diner’s most mysterious patron.

Grail Days by A. F. Stewart: Living forever has its drawbacks, especially when you spend it clearing away the messes of other immortals. Downward Mobility by M. K. Wiseman: they say love conquers all, but can it save a Valkyrie when she breaks all the rules?

Legends and Lore: An Anthology of Mythic Proportions

On the Isle of Sound and Wonder by Alyson GrauerAlyson Grauer
Alyson Grauer is a storyteller in multiple mediums, her two primary canvases being the stage and the page. On stage, she is often seen in the Chicago area, primarily at Piccolo Theatre, Plan 9 Burlesque, and the Bristol Renaissance Faire. Her nonfiction work has been published in the “Journal for Perinatal Education” for Lamaze International. Her short fiction can be found in Tales from the Archives (Volume 2) for the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences and in one other anthology from Xchyler Publishing, Mechanized Masterpieces: A Steampunk Anthology. Alyson is a proud graduate of Loyola University of Chicago and hails originally from Milwaukee, WI. Her debut novel, On The Isle of Sound and Wonder, will be released in November 2014 from Xchyler Publishing.

A Dash of Madness: A Thriller AnthologySarah Hunter Hyatt
Sarah Hunter Hyatt grew up outside of Salt Lake City, Utah. As a child, she kept notebooks of stories that she would share with her little sisters at bedtime. Now, an adult, her stories have matured but still occupy her thoughts (and notebooks). “Faelad” is Sarah’s second short story for Xchyler Publishing, her first being “Stunner” which appeared in A Dash of Madness: a Thriller Anthology. Along with writing, being a mom to three wonderful kids, and a wife to a patient husband, she also dabbles in graphic design.

Emma Michaels
Emma Michaels is a cover artist, blogger, and author of the Society of Feathers series. Her love of blogging started when she created a book blog in 2009 which gave her the courage to finally submit her own novels to publishers. Emma Michaels’ publications now include Owlet and Eyrie (Tribute Books), Holiday Magick Anthology (Spencer Hill Press), and Cirque d’Obscure Anthology, and Cogs in Time Anthology (Crushing Hearts Black Butterfly). To find out more stop by http://www.EmmaMichaels.com

Tomorrow Wendell, Book 1 of The White Dragon Black seriesR. M. Ridley
R. M. Ridley lives in rural Ontario on a small homestead, raising a menagerie of animals, including a flock of sheep and a swarm of foul. He has been writing stories, both long and short, for three decades, the themes of which range from the gruesome to the fantastical. As an individual who suffers from severe bipolar disorder, Ridley is a strong believer in being open about mental health issues because myths should be kept to stories. Ridley’s first short story featuring Jonathan Alvey, “A Case for Custody,” appeared in Shades and Shadows: A Paranormal Anthology (2013), followed by Tomorrow Wendell, Book 1 of the White Dragon Black series (2014). He has two works slated for release in 2015, including Books, Bourbon, and Blondes, an anthology of White Dragon Black short stories, and another full length novel, Book 2 of the White Dragon Black series.

Sarah Seeley
Through two wonderful mentored research experiences, Sarah E. Seeley had the opportunity to work with dead sauropods and ancient odonates while acquiring her undergraduate degree in geology from Brigham Young University. She hopes to study more dead things in the future and contribute to scientific discussions about what makes life on Earth so amazing. In the meantime, she explores the bright side of being human by writing dark fiction. Sarah’s independently published works include Maladaptive Bind and Blood Oath: An Orc Love Story. Another short story, “Driveless,” appears in “Leading Edge Magazine” Issue #66.

You can learn more about Sarah on her writing blog at www.SlithersOfThought.com.

LegendsandLoreBookCoverLance Schonberg
In the middle of lecturing one of his children on the importance of following dreams, Lance began to wonder why and when he’d stopped following his. Gathering up a few salvageable shreds of unfinished stories, he began his first novel. He’s written several novels and many shorter works in the years since, and has had twenty or so stories see publication. At any given moment Lance is working on a novel and at least one short story—probably more—most of which fall into the broad buckets of science fiction or fantasy.

Lance can be found lurking on his blog at www.lanceschoberg.com, on Twitter as @WritingDad, and sometimes even on his Facebook author page.

Danielle E. Shipley
Danielle E. Shipley’s first novelettes told the everyday misadventures of wacky kids like herself. . . . Or so she thought. Unbeknownst to them all, half of her characters were actually closeted elves, dwarves, fairies, or some combination thereof. When it all came to light, Danielle did the sensible thing: packed up and moved to Fantasy Land, where daily rent is the low, low price of her heart, soul, blood, sweat, tears, firstborn child, sanity, and words; lots of them. She’s also been known to spend short bursts of time in the real-life Chicago area with the parents who home schooled her and the two little sisters who keep her humble.

Danielle blogs at www.EverOnWord.wordpress.com.

A. F. Stewart
A steadfast and proud sci-fi and fantasy geek, A.F. Stewart was born and raised in Nova Scotia, Canada and still calls it home. The youngest in a family of seven children, she always had an overly creative mind and an active imagination. She favours the dark and deadly when writing—her genres of choice being dark fantasy and horror—but she has been known to venture into the light on occasion. As an indie author she’s published novellas and story collections, with a few side trips into poetry and nonfiction. Stewart’s first published work with Xchyler Publishing, “Our Man Fred,” appeared in Mechanized Masterpieces: A Steampunk Anthology (2013).

SMechanized Masterpieces: A Steampunk Anthologytewart is fond of good books, action movies, sword collecting, geeky things, comic books, and oil painting as a hobby. She has a great interest in history and mythology, often working those themes into her books and stories.

M. K. Wiseman
M. K. Wiseman is a librarian who recently decided that it would be fun to try her hand at the creation of books instead of mere curation. A ‘method’ writer, she likes to first try out the worlds that she builds. This has, admittedly, led to some strange results. (For example, she once elicited funny looks at her daily coffee shop by adopting a British accent for one day. We’re all in trouble once she decides to write a space novel.) Wiseman’s first short story for Xchyler Publishing, “Clockwork Ballet,” appeared in Mechanized Masterpieces: A Steampunk Anthology (2013).

In addition to the dozens of stories currently marinating on her hard drive, she maintains two blogs, Flying the Blue Pigeon and Millicent and Rue.

 Legends and Lore: An Anthology of Mythic Proportions

Do not forget the Rafflecopter giveaway where you can win some great prizes!

K&DII Med

Conversation with A.F. Stewart – Author Interview

The recording device from which this transcript came was recently found on a church doorstep near Salem Massachusetts. It involves a conversation between J. Aurel Guay and author A.F. Stewart. The whereabouts of Dr. Guay are still unknown.

GooglePhotoAurel: Hello Ms. Stewart, it was so good of you to accept my invitation for an interview. Although I must say, your choice of setting here in this centuries old cemetery, under a full moon is a little… unorthodox. Fortunately, I’ve brought along a little picnic basket. Help yourself to a fruit tart and a glass of wine, and we will begin.

Stewart: Oh, blackberry and sour cherry tarts. My favourite flavours. I’ll pass on the wine, though, as I don’t imbibe. I’ve also brought something, my own little delectable delicacy, Deviled Egg Eyeballs (holds out a container of deviled eggs in the shape of bloodshot eyeballs). Care for one?

Aurel: Don’t mind if I do! As I understand it, you have just released a new work of fiction and are celebrating with gifts to your readers. What can you tell us about it?

Stewart: My new book is a Continue reading

Manuscript Accepted! Raise the Dirigibles and Bring on the Steam!

10660375_464697890339992_5856595183846179556_nI am simply elated right now! This past night, I got the official word from the ever illustrious and gracious Xchyler Publishing, that I will be published yet AGAIN! This time as an author in an anthology of steampunk stories inspired by great American literature. I am so pleased about this on so very many levels. I’ve been hinting about my story in progress on my facebook page and twitter. At some point in the near future, I will compile all the clues and hints to wet your appetite.

The short story is titled ‘A Princess of Jasoom’ and derives from the novel that inspired it, namely ‘A Princess of Mars’ by Edgar Rice Boroughs. As readers of  A Princess of Mars might recall, Jasoom is the Martian name for Earth, and I thought the inversion of the title fitting for my story based on Earth. I must confess that, while it is one of my best imaginations, as it stands the manuscript is certainly one of my worst executions, owing to the extreme time constraints under which I rushed to complete the project. Yet, in the end it seems to have been worth it. For, the editors of Xchyler must have seen through my basal grammar, and ragged prose, to the potential buried deep beneath.

10628500_464697883673326_5650381832943665180_nMuch work is yet to be done to bring this tale up to even my own standards, much less the high standards of my beloved editors. It was a delight to try to emulate the verbose and vivid writing style of Edgar Rice Boroughs. However, it will be a challenge to refine that style into the limited word count and restrictions on passive voice to which Mr. Boroughs was so given.

So what can you expect from this tale? It is not a retelling of the original story, but a thrilling story of mystery and action set in parallel to the historical work where two characters strive to prevent an evil warlord from conquering Earth by means of an ancient Martian technology. It comes complete with fantastic creatures and inventions that I hope give credit to the creative mind of Mr. Borough’s.

10612583_464697900339991_7591844242252676265_nSteampunk blends into the tale in the import of the many varieties of steam powered automaton that have arisen since John Carter’s second egress from Earth back to Mars. The cogs and boilers of these are the critical element that drive the story and, I hope, will likewise drive the steampunk fans on through its pages.

I can tell you that the heart of the story is a very old idea of mine I had that has taken many forms over the years. It started as an Indian Jones style tale of world traveling adventure and ancient artifacts, progressed to a science fiction tale (that you can read the beginnings of here), and finally evolved into a true steampunk tribute, first aimed at Jules Verne’s ‘Around the World in Eighty Days’, then later finding its better inspiration in the work of Edgar Rice Boroughs.

Be looking for more details in the coming months and be sure to sign up as an Advance Copy Reader in order that you might have the first peak at this wonderful collection of cog and steam driven tales.

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Special Feature: J. Aurel Guay’s Postmortem

jaurelguay:

The epilogue to my published short story ‘The Death of Dr. Marcus Wells’ was shared on Dancing with Fireflies this weekend! Go have a read and find out what is in store for Marcus and Emily after their adventures in the short story.

Originally posted on Dancing with Fireflies:

Our friend, J. Aurel Guay, has a new special feature for DWF readers. His amazing anthology that came out last year: Shades and Shadows: A Paranormal Anthology  has been a success and now he is working on a new novel.  You can find more of this piece on Xchler Publishing’s website.  We have enjoyed his incredible talents here on DWF through the years and we are thrilled to give you another sample of his fantastic writing.
  

Please enjoy Postmortem.

~ C. ~

It was late when Emily tiptoed into the room. Unlike most of the other rooms in the abandoned monastery, this one was well-lit. Several oil lamps surrounded the table on which the corpse laid and pushed back the darkness that seeped from the stone walls.

Marcus’ back was to her, his shaggy light coloured hair hung over his eyes as he bowed his head toward the table. So engrossed in his…

View original 2,228 more words

Wordforge 8-20-14 (Words as Weapons/Glory)

jaurelguay:

I threw my literary hat into the ring on this flash fiction challenge. Check out my entry (and all the others) in the comments section!

Originally posted on The Daily Wordforge:

Wordforge 8-20-14

SONG: “Words as Weapons” by Seether

THEME: Glory

“We have to roll back, we can’t take much more of this!”

Corporal Hayes had been shouting since the bombardment began and hadn’t stopped, and Nia was surprised that he hadn’t passed out yet from it, the man could hardly catch his breath.

“We’re not going anywhere, Hayes,” she says, not taking her eyes from the observation slit in the hulk. “Command said to hold this point and that’s what we’re going to do.”

The rest of the squad was scared, but still following orders — except for Hayes, and if he kept it up much longer it would start to creep under the skin of the others. They’d held the hilltop since sunrise, and the mad red orb was well on its way to the horizon, and the Plasmic Engines never let up their fire. Nia thought it would have…

View original 299 more words

We’re losing all our Strong Female Characters to Trinity Syndrome… By Tasha Robinson

Here is a great checklist for making genuine ‘strong female characters’, taken from this interesting article by Tasha Robinson (follow on twitter @TashaRobinson). While I think Mrs Robinson comes too down hard on some movies with male protagonists, for not elevating the other females involved, I think she makes some excellent points on how to make really inspiring female characters in our own fiction.

Find Mrs. Robinson’s full article here:

http://thedissolve.com/features/exposition/618-were-losing-all-our-strong-female-characters-to-tr/

Here’s the ‘Strong female character’ checklist:

 

  1. After being introduced, does your Strong Female Character then fail to do anything fundamentally significant to the outcome of the plot? Anything at all?
  2. If she does accomplish something plot-significant, is it primarily getting raped, beaten, or killed to motivate a male hero? Or deciding to have sex with/not have sex with/agreeing to date/deciding to break up with a male hero? Or nagging a male hero into growing up, or nagging him to stop being so heroic? Basically, does she only exist to service the male hero’s needs, development, or motivations?
  3. Could your Strong Female Character be seamlessly replaced with a floor lamp with some useful information written on it to help a male hero?
  4. Is a fundamental point of your plot that your Strong Female Character is the strongest, smartest, meanest, toughest, or most experienced character in the story—until the protagonist arrives?
  5. …or worse, does he enter the story as a bumbling f***-up, but spend the whole movie rapidly evolving past her, while she stays entirely static, and even cheers him on? Does your Strong Female Character exist primarily so the protagonist can impress her?
  6. It’s nice if she’s hyper-cool, but does she only start off that way so a male hero will look even cooler by comparison when he rescues or surpasses her?
  7. Is she so strong and capable that she’s never needed rescuing before now, but once the plot kicks into gear, she’s suddenly captured or threatened by the villain, and needs the hero’s intervention? Is breaking down her pride a fundamental part of the story?
  8. Does she disappear entirely for the second half/third act of the film, for any reason other than because she’s doing something significant to the plot (besides being a hostage, or dying)?