Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Sunday, June 16, 2013
When rich northerner, Peter Reynolds, heads to North Carolina for the funeral of an old girlfriend, he gets more than he expected including murder. Claws of the Griffin is a must read for anyone who likes their mysteries served with a southern flavor. The author does a could job of keep us guessing the outcome with well-played twists until the very end. It's got the big toe firmly planted in the 5-star rating arena. A good read for a hot southern night. Full disclosure: I read the ARC of this story.
Wednesday, June 5, 2013
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
|Times were surely|
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Monday, April 22, 2013
This year is the 17-year Cicada Cycle when that strange spaceship noise will blow your mind. This is one of the sixty-six stories in BATHROOM READING--Short Stories for Short Visits that touches on this subject. Enjoy while you still can.
Posted by Rick Bylina at 11:51 AM
Thursday, April 4, 2013
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Posted by Rick Bylina at 8:41 PM
Monday, March 25, 2013
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
AND NOW FOR THE MAIN EVENT
Posted by Rick Bylina at 12:04 AM
Monday, March 11, 2013
I took off last week from blogging. I was told, "Don't do that again?" I didn't know that my simple little reminder for everyone to start writing was influencing anyone. So, let's get back to basics. The worst words written are better than the best words stuck in your head. So write. Open the file now. Just write.
There was a man from Nantucket. No. The man from Nantucket wore his windbreaker like a shield against the latest Nor'easter. Ineffective. Wind pelted him like small stones; daggers of cold sliced threw the smallest opening; rain oozed through the same openings like evil creeping out of a cemetery towards unsuspecting young lovers. He sidled up to the oak tree, broad from two hundred years growth and stubby from long winters, short summers, and a constant on-shore breeze. The barren branches hung heavy to one side like a bad Trump over comb, but at least the near hurricane-force wind gusts didn't slap debris against him. The rain still came; the cold still bit. Soon, however, the electricity went out and the small houses disappeared into the dark forming ill-defined shadows. King smiled. Another story blossomed in his head.
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Posted by Rick Bylina at 12:08 AM
Monday, February 25, 2013
|This girl came up when |
searching for Officer Byrd.
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Monday, February 18, 2013
Some days you just have to be reminded to focus on what is most important to you in the long run, short run, this week, today, or in the next hour. Whether it is a novel or a word, as long as you move it forward, that's what counts. And yes, losing 10,000 words through a great edit is moving forward.
The story wants to run out of bounds, but I keep reining it in, focusing it on the laser sharp original intent. After 3,100 additional words on Sunday, it is now 5,973 words. 973 beyond what is required, mandated, allowed. Tomorrow and the next day and the next, I will focus on editing it to make it sharper. Always focusing. Tightening. And if it should remain beyond this goal after the good editing fight is over, perhaps it will whisper that it was intended for another goal, and I am only a tool used to give it birth. Focus on that! And write.
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Monday, February 11, 2013
The writing job isn't going to well at the moment. Sales are very slow. Is it me or the market? My next promotional push is two months away. The poetry book is two months away. I got offered $15 for fifteen two-hundred word articles about the tensile strength of spider webs (that's a half-a-penny per word). I passed. There has to be something better.
Then this morning I see that there is an opening in Vatican City. I'm going to submit my resume to the College of Cardinals to see if I can't get the plum position of Pope. Hey, I'm Catholic. I've read the Bible, beginning to end, including all the begotting. I belonged to the Newman Club in college. My wife was the church organist at the Milwaukee Basilica. I know where my church is, and I visit it a few times a year. Heck, A MATTER OF FAITH deals with a lot of catholic dogma, a principle or set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true. I can declare things with authority. I've seen the movie, Dogma, about thirty times, and The Ten Commandments a dozen times. I figure I can make some much needed changes and still have time to write on the side.
For one thing, the popemobile is lame. I'd convert the latest batmobile for my use. You'd scare the crap out of sinners and get to more people faster, people who need to see you. God's representative would once again be seen as all powerful and cool. Buddy Christ in Dogma might have been over the top, but it proposed moving the relationship in the right direction. I'd push that. The hat has to go. Hats lost their luster after JFK went without one at his inauguration, and it would get rid of the high-paid Cardinal whose soul (sic) job seems to be making sure the hat doesn't tip over. I'd keep the cape. In my papacy, I'm a superhero, as a Pope should be. I'd get rid of the forty pounds of vestments for one blinding-white, light-weight, bullet-proof vest with a cross in front, fish on each bicep, and the question, "Got God?" emblazoned on the back.
Also, too many Cardinals, Bishops, and other hanger-oners shuffling around Vatican City. You want to do the Lord's work, get out of the finery and visit a slum or at least a suburban enclave where heathenism seems to exist with impunity on television. Women priests? Yeah, I'm for that. We had a woman Pope once! Priests marry? Sure, why not? The only reason it was stopped was because of bad inheritance laws for Papal families. Fix that. Don't castrate the priests. Fish on Friday...I might actually bring that back. I'm a fisherman, and I need every excuse possible to put out a line, put up my feet, and pop a cold one. And these changes are only for starters. Yes, this might be the beginning of a beautiful story. Next, Pope Rick Versus the Alien Invasion.
Monday, February 4, 2013
It's your Monday Morning Wake-Up Call, especially if you're a writer. Groundhog's Day is over. SuperBowl has been played. (I lost my bet with Sydney.) Christmas decorations have better been taken down by now. Yeah, sure, Valentine's Day is coming up, but most writers are probably looking for a new angle rather than another Hallmark sweet story.
- - - Turtle Love - - -
Johnny loves Debbie, but Debbie is an alien incapable of love, so Johnny tries to find a brain to transplant into Debbie. He finds Doreen, whose brain he believes has hardly been used. She's addicted to shoes she can't afford, pungent nail polish that is changed every eight hours, and turtles, and not even Ninja turtles, real-life boxer turtles. She's perfect for the swap. Unfortunately, Johnny finds out that he has a soft-spot for reptiles, loves the smell of fresh nail polish, and realizes that Doreen has some measure of fiduciary responsibility because she never buys the shoes she can't afford. She just plasters the walls in her rent-controlled two bedroom flat with pictures of them. When Johnny starts hanging out with Doreen more than Debbie, Debbie's dormant emotional synapses snap to life when the smell of Silver Streakiness nail polish follows Johnny home one night. Debbie's passion is ignited. Johnny, exhausted by attending an all night rave with Doreen, doesn't notice and falls asleep.
Debbie stalks the pair with pure hatred--not a hard thing to do because if they aren't home they're at the pet store where Doreen works. When Debbie confronts the pair, she says, "I hate you." Johnny pees in his pants in fear; Doreen screams so shrill dogs cry; the turtles slip into their shells. Debbie's eyes glow with laser intensity as she stares at the two of them.
"I never knew you could do that," Doreen says.
"Love must have been the next to the hatred synapse," Debbie responds.
They step over Johnny's melted corpse. The turtles follow.
- - - Or, Something Like That - - -
Now, get out there and make a day of it!
Saturday, February 2, 2013
Thursday, January 31, 2013
Bonus Review this week...Murder Most Academic by Alicia Stone