It’s the most wonderful time of year…or is it?
Christmas Eve is a night of mystery and magic, but not always in ways we expect. Things lurk in the shadows and they’re not the least bit jolly or merry. Let’s just say some presents are better left unopened.
‘Tis the season to be screaming along with our thirteen tales of holiday horrors. Ghosts. Monsters. Demons. And more!
This Christmas, be careful what you wish for…
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I try to avoid all the usual end-of-year trends toward lists and replays, but when the alarm went off this morning, I started thinking of all the things I wanted to accomplish today. This led to the realization that 2013 has been a year of some high highs and some devastating lows. I’m typically a middle-of-the-roader, so for me, these extremes are noteworthy.
Personally, on the most positive end of the spectrum, I had three stories published and actually got to see my name in physical print book form twice. When I saw the print version of Stalkers, I won’t lie, I nearly (very nearly) cried. These were huge accomplishments for me, and they gave me the confidence and drive to think of “novelist” as an actual job title and a real possibility. So there was that.
At almost the same time (I think it was literally a week after my first acceptance), my whole little house-of-cards life was collapsed by a stupid, six-legged beast the size of a pinhead. Ugh. I have developed an undying hatred of all tick-kind. While I won’t get into all the details of all the ways Lyme disease ruined the past six months, I will say that I have sworn off card-house building and anything domino related. And I’m recovering, so there’s that.
A small consolation from the Lyme debacle was that it inspired a mini story. When I started the first course of antibiotics, a friend showed me a contest prompt: write a 40-word story that begins and ends with the same word. I had nothing else to do but lay in bed in pain, so I transferred all my negative feelings of the moment into a story. I never submitted it because, at the time, I was mentally incapable of figuring out the hows.
But here is the mini-short that Lyme made:
Tick needed a human to pass the lyme to. He waited on a blade of grass, hitched a ride on Deer, and hopped on Cat’s scruff. A human appeared.
Chicken chomped the insect. “You’re not giving my human lyme, Tick.”
Clearly, I was not in my right mind, but it made me smile for a bit. I wrote two versions. This seemed the stronger of the two.
Ironically, I had written a novel several years ago in which one of the villains used a tick-like weapon. I wonder if I was having some kind of premonition.
Anyway, overall, 2013 taught me a lot and assigned me lots of work to do for 2014. Hopefully, I’m up to the tasks. I don’t do resolutions, but I have some goals in mind.
Do you have any major accomplishments or lessons to share from the past year? What are your goals for 2014?
I’m a bona fide published author of fiction! Urban Harvest: Tales of the Paranormal in New York City is now available at Amazon. The anthology features stories by Laurie Wenham, Laurie Treacy, Tara Hill, Don Corcoran, Saif Ansari, Donna Ansari, Alex Shvartsman, Sean Sakamoto, and me. I’ve read a few of the stories, and they are quite good. I hope to do a review shortly. Anyway, please check out the book and I hope you’ll support it. All proceeds go to City Harvest and will help feed the hungry in New York City.
I have had a few exciting events recently. I submitted two stories for two anthologies, and was accepted to both. Yay!
The first is a paranormal short story, “Under the Mattress,” that will appear in the anthology Urban Harvest: Tales of the Paranormal in NYC. The proceeds from this collection will benefit the organization City Harvest. The expected release date for this eBook is September of this year.
The second story is titled “Lucid” and will be part of the Stalkers anthology edited by Cynthia Shepp and Rene Folsom. I’ll update when I know a release date.
I’m very excited about both these projects and can’t wait to read the other stories in the collections.
On a slightly separate note, I got the notion to try my hand at writing a comic script. At the moment, I’m converting a short children’s story I wrote a while back. The process is much harder than I expected, and I never thought it would be easy. But the conversion process is showing me where the story is lacking in detail or where it includes unnecessary detail, so I’m glad I decided to do it.
Keep your eyes peeled for information about the publications and have a great day!