I’m happy to say we have a few winners of the book giveaway contest! I’ll send your copies as soon as you tell me what format and where to send them. I’ll be in touch with the winners by email.
Here’s the third chapter! Enjoy!
For a moment, I’m too stunned to speak.
Denise Laughton’s upcoming birthday bash is the talk of the school. Getting asked is like receiving an invite to Miley Cyrus’s coming-out party.
Denise is talking but I’m not paying strict attention. She shoves a photo of a girl in my face. She’s a pretty redhead with impish green eyes.
“You know Randy, of course,” Denise says. I nod numbly. “If you see him with Kathleen”—she cocks her head toward the photo―“just let me know.”
“Um, okay.” Apparently, we’ve struck a deal. Or so Denise thinks.
I consider saying no, but Denise’s offer entices me. I feel a sudden rush of power. Ha! Look who needs who!
The next day after school, I watch Randy and Denise having a brief chat. They say their goodbyes and he strides across the street, stopping long enough to give Denise a final wave before disappearing around a corner.
I’m on my bike, my colorless hair tucked under a ridiculous blonde wig. A baseball cap perches atop the monstrosity. Denise has provided light-colored foundation with sunscreen, which I’ve liberally applied to my pale cheeks and other exposed body parts. In case you haven’t heard, albinos burn easily. My eyes are hidden behind dark glasses. I look like the world’s most retarded spy. I set off on my bike, keeping a good distance between Randy and me.
If you bike, you know that maintaining a distance between yourself and a pedestrian is difficult. I keep stopping so I won’t get too close to him. Meanwhile, God knows where Randy’s headed. I figure it can’t be all that far if he’s traveling on foot.
Turns out I’m wrong. Randy makes a right onto a four-lane road. He halts at a sheltered bus stop. I circle back. By the time I’ve returned, an ECAT bus (that stands for Escalada County Area Transit—big time, huh?) is pulling up. Randy boards it. The doors close and the bus takes off. I follow in hot pursuit.
The bus is slow-moving and makes frequent stops. That makes it easy for me to keep up. Randy gets off near a busy intersection and waits, for what I don’t know. I turn down the nearest side street and hide next to a tree where I can observe him unnoticed.
He is tall and slender with glossy brown hair. Cute, but not overly so. He has a way of shoving his hands deep into his pockets, as if he wants to hide them. I find that oddly cute. His nose is a bit crooked, as if it had been broken and not properly set. He looks very serious. He must have a lot on his mind. Is he worried because he’s cheating on Denise? Or is he worried about the crazy girl in the blonde wig who’s been following him?
Another bus wheezes to the curb and Randy gets on. As the doors shut and the bus lumbers off, I cycle behind it. This works well until the bus signals to make a turn onto Route 29, a major highway and bike-unfriendly road. I may be pale, but I’m not suicidal. I coast past, turning my head to watch the bus roar onto the highway. Randy escapes, free and clear, despite my amazing surveillance skills.
Now, as part of an online seminar I’m taking, I’m trying something out. See what you think, and feel free to subscribe and leave comments!
BTW, isn’t this the most awesome song? :)
The awesome thing about the Internet is that it provides so many opportunities for content creators. Anyone can put up videos now. The question is, what do you offer that makes you special? What are you passionate about?
I can think of all sorts of things that I care about. I’m concerned about the environment, for instance. When I was at the Nats game, I saw an old friend from EPA who told me that there was lots of litigation regarding the Endangered Species Act to defend the agency against. No big surprise to me.
Cynical? Well, I spent more than one meeting at EPA in a room full of bigwigs and every underling who felt compelled to make an appearance, sitting around and getting nothing done.
Back then, I was working 10-hour days, so I could enjoy an extra day off every other weekend. My commute was ungodly. I’d get up at 4:40 in the AM, rush to get ready, and drive like a bat out of hell to make the 6 AM train. And I made it every time.
I’d be at work by 7:30 and get off at 4:30, I think. Mainly, I remember catching the 5:15 train, which always reminded me of The Who song from Quadrophenia. “Out of my brain on the 5:15!”
I’d be home by 6:15 or so, making it a 12-hour-plus day, from door-to-door.
And now I write, which is what I’ve always wanted to do. However, publishing has changed so quickly, it’s time to move in new directions.
Even so, I’ll be publishing my young adult novel soon, along with my fourth Sam McRae mystery. In preparation for the latter, I’m doing a GoodReads giveaway of my first novel until September 22, 2014. The widget is now in the sidebar.
Furthermore, I’m doing another giveaway. This one’s for the third Sam McRae novel, Riptide!
Just leave a comment, guessing where I might be, and I’ll send you a copy of my book. The paperback giveaway is limited to US and Canadian participants. But I’ll gladly send the rest of the world an e-copy.
I’ll hold all comments in moderation mode until the giveaway period ends.
Now … picture this! What if Star Wars were a Tarantino movie? :)
PS: All my novels are on Bookshare now!
PPS: Don’t shoot the messenger! :)
I’m back on Facebook, in case you’re interested, and it’s as incomprehensible as ever. Sometimes, I can friend people. Sometimes not … oh, well …
Since I was last on Facebook, a couple of months ago, so much has changed. The settings aren’t quite the same. Getting the right information from the help section isn’t the easiest thing. But everywhere you go, there you are!
Also, I’m giving away ten copies of Identity Crisis through GoodReads. Click here to read about that. In fact, here’s the widget that should go in the sidebar, except it doesn’t fit. I’ll have to talk to my webmaster about that.
Between all this and trying to publish two books, write another, and one or two screenplays, I squeeze in time to call my insurance company and beg them to cover my acupuncture sessions. What a delight!
Oh, but there is good news. Random and Sundry Things lives again! It’s just that it’s a Tumblr blog now. I just post stuff that appeals to me there — randomly. I have no idea what I’m doing, as usual.
I could call the Tumblr support group about my inability to start and maintain separate blogs on each topic of interest. But, hey …
The other good thing is I’m back on Pinterest now. Check out all the great shit I’ve pinned!
Here’s a Beatles compilation I really like.
My thanks to Billy Franks! :)
PS: Don’t forget! My half-price Smashwords special for Riptide ends on Aug. 31!
Not to mention the 99 cent deal on the Thrilling Thirteen! 13 thrilling novels for less than a buck! Get it while you can. Limited time offer!
I’ve also put up a book review on YouTube.
PSS: I did find time to have lunch with my friend Eileen Bernstein, a local musician who’s famous in these parts!
So … I do get out of the house, every now and then. :)
And here’s a photo of Five Guys. It’s as close as we come to the In-N-Out Burger. Not nearly close enough. :)