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Monday, February 11, 2013

Stop the World, I Just Want to Write

Hello, Fire Enthusiasts. I thank you so much for the well-wishes as I’ve dealt with my allergy flare-up. Your encouragement really helped. Thankfully, this has been a pretty mild case this year. I feel good and haven’t missed any work, although I sound terrible on occasion, constantly clearing my throat or choking on the dreaded post-nasal drip. I’m making all of the sound effects as I type this to you, but thought I would leave out the graphic details – unlike last week. *grins*

Speaking of the dreaded day job, I hope you’ll forgive my colorful language, but it’s been kicking my ass. The hours are a solid 11 now of triage-like conditions. You wouldn’t have thought that possible with processing and packaging raisins, but it’s true (And I certainly mean no disrespect for those in the medical community). On top of the hustle and bustle, there are lots of Saturdays sprinkled in for good measure.

Anyway, I didn’t come here to talk about the day job. Believe me! It’s the last frigging thing I want to talk about. All I will tell you is I can no longer function on 20% power when I get home, especially as the week nears its end. My inbox is full of blog posts, Facebook or Goodreads Event invitations, etc. I’m just so exhausted now that all I can do is sort through them daily, process the ones that need immediate attention and then hope to deal with the rest on the weekend. What weekend there is, of course! My cough has kept me off the treadmill as well – something I’m not very happy about.

I have managed to continue work on my newest WIP. I have completed another draft and I like where it stands. I’m starting an edit now as I prepare to hand it off to betas. I am still looking for a beta or two, if anyone might be available. Speaking of that, I’ll leave you now with another teaser from the forthcoming paranormal, Ghosts:

We were up early that next day and were already in the tiny breakfast nook area of the hotel when Anne Bircher came walking in and rocked my already fragile world. Ray saw her first.

“Holy shit!” he exclaimed, and it couldn’t have been more appropriate.

I looked over my shoulder in the general direction of Ray’s gaze and suddenly lost my appetite. Neither one of us said another word. She stood five foot six in her brown heels and green skirt and matching blouse. A long gold necklace hung at the middle of her chest. She sported a short hairdo which perfectly accentuated her face and neck. It framed her well, as if the lovely woman needed any further framing, but we stared at her as if she were the only woman left in the world.

She was the spitting image of Angie.

Ray turned to me, but offered no words. I saw him struggle, and simply touched his arm with my hand. I was engaged in my own struggle. Not only did I no longer feel like eating, but no longer felt like visiting Salinas, California, either. It was uncanny what I felt then. It was as if someone had just ripped off an enormous scab which I had taken great pains in maintaining, which I suppose was true. I saw Ray lift his right hand into the air and wave her over.

“Hello,” she said as she approached our table and I blinked hard when it was Angie’s voice which greeted me.

“Miss Bircher, is it?” Ray asked, half standing.

“Yes,” she answered.

“Good to meet you,” he said. I vaguely saw him extend his hand across the table. I just stared at my plate. “I’m Ray and this is my brother Paul. Please have a seat.” There was a tiny, well-manicured hand in my space then. I took it, gave it the customary shake, but hardly made eye contact with her. And I certainly didn’t stand up. I merely pretended that my half-finished plate of brunch was the greatest food in the world and that I hadn’t eaten in days.

“It’s great meeting you both on such short notice and on a Sunday,” the woman said. “This really works out for me and my schedule. I hope this has worked out for you both as well. I would hate to think that I twisted your arms somehow.” She seemed genuinely sweet, but I was having a terrible time hearing the woman Anne was and not the ghost that was Angie.

“No,” Ray said, taking a sip of his coffee and then setting it back down. “Both of us were free. We came up yesterday and spent the day on the coast.”

“Fantastic,” she said. “Very good.” She produced a thin briefcase that she had carried in and set it down upon the table. “I have paperwork here that we will need to get started, but otherwise everything is ready for us to head over and have a look at the property.” The paperwork had highlighted places where Ray and I were to sign. Lots of them.

“Excuse me,” I asked her, only briefly looking up at her. I couldn’t yet take more than bite-sized portions of her face. “I’m still a bit confused by this whole thing. I don’t even remember this Flora woman, and yet I’m now part owner of her home.”

“That’s right,” Anne replied. “I have a photo of her, if that’ll help.”

She pulled a photo she had clipped to a folder and passed it over. I drank what little remained of my coffee and looked at the face that I didn’t recognize. She had grey hair with streaks of the dark hair that once had been. Whether black or brown, I couldn’t tell. She was unsmiling and serious, as if life had mistreated her. I passed the photo to Ray.

“Everything’s all here and everything has been taken care of,” Anne continued. “You owe no monies and there are funds to cover future taxes, repairs, etc. All that remains is for me to show you the property and hand you the keys, basically. Neither of you may remember your Aunt Flora, but she remembered you.”

“Then what are we waiting for?” Ray asked. We signed everything and then headed on our way. 

That wasn’t very scary, was it? See, I’m not all about the horror. ;) I offered you this peek into my WIP in order to demonstrate the relationships that will be developed in and amongst the very literal ghosts that I have for you. There most definitely are scares, but there are sweet moments, too. Now that I have whetted your appetite, I guess I’d better get back to the editing, huh?

If my writing does interest you, you can have the two e-books in my crossover vampire series for $4 bucks.

We’ll talk soon.



  1. Good luck with editing and surviving work and all that good stuff. No dripping today? It rather made me think of the story of the stranded teenagers, where the boy goes to find help and the girl hears something on the roof of the car, finding the boy hanged over it. In some stories it's the scraping of his feet; in others it's the drip, drip, drip of blood from his severed throat. Good stuff!

    Interesting snippet you posted! Makes me want to know who Angie is, and whether this woman is, in fact, a ghost, or whether she's nothing of the sort.

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse

  2. Interesting teaser, James. So glad you are feeling better:))

  3. "Bite-size portions of her face"

    I love it.

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  5. Jimmy,

    Like the excerpt. I thought it was well-chosen. I know just a little about this story from past posts, but I think this excerpt stands alone and is a great promoter of the story. A nice element of spookiness. Haven't seen or read many ghost stories in ages, but did just recently watch The Pact, and it was a good old fashioned ghost story, I thought.

    Sorry about the allergies. Mine are still frozen under the snow, but another month or so and they'll be back. Hope yours are getting better.

    Keep fighting the good fight and writing the good write. Good to hear from you at my blog. I've been pretty absent myself in favor of the WIP (and the day job, but I wouldn't necessarily say "in favor of" the day job :)

    Take care,

  6. Jimmy,
    Can't wait to read this book! Sounds amazing. So sorry you are crazy busy. I definitely understand that. Take care of yourself, and I'm glad you are feeling a little better.


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  8. Saw your blog on google+ and thought I'd check it out-- glad I did! I hope you feel better soon. In the vernacular of my daughter: allergies suck. I'm hoping the plus side to more work hours is more money for you. As for the excerpt-excellent.

  9. Great excerpt, Jimmy! Good luck on polishing it up. Stay healthy. Can't believe you are able to write so well with the long hours you need to put in. Commendable! I am hoping to squeeze some writing in when home from work, but don't know how you do it. Share the secret? ')


Thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate you taking the time. I'll get back to you here or on one of the other social networks. It's not like we're not on all of them, right? ;) Also, if you're here to give me an award - bless you. However, your friendship and visits are more than enough. Thanks and blessings.