About Mae Clair

Writing tales of mystery and suspense

Happy Solar Eclipse Day!

Before I kick off my post, just a quick note that I am also blogging at Story Empire today on the topic of “tribes.” Not sure what I mean?  You can check it out here if the mood strikes. 🙂

Having said that, I’ve been looking forward to this day for a while. Yeah, I know it’s Monday but in the U.S. August 21, 2017 is a big deal. Why? Because states and cities lying in a narrow band from the northwest to the southeast are going to experience a total solar eclipse.

As an example, if you live in Hopkinsville, Kentucky you’ve got it made. I picked that location because it’s listed as one of the 10 best viewing areas according to GreatAmericanEclipse.com.

It’s also the location of the Hopkinsville Goblin extraterrestrial incident of 1955. Hmm. That sighting occurred on August 21, 1955. Am I the only one who finds the coincidence in date a little freaky?

Total solar eclipse glowing on sky above wilderness in forest. Amazing scientific natural phenomenon when moon passes between planet earth and sun. Serenity nature background.

If you are in Hopkinsville or anywhere in the cross-country viewing band, consider yourself lucky. My area will only see a partial eclipse with the nearest to totality happening around 2:40 PM. People have been gobbling up viewing glasses wherever they can find them. As far as I know, there are none to be had.

The last time a total solar eclipse was visible from the lower 48 states in the U.S. was in February of 1979. Once again, my area only saw a partial eclipse but I vividly remember making a pin hole viewer. I also had a telescope at the time which was equipped with a sun filter and a white tray for projection. I still remember fiddling with that thing in the front yard. “Sky events” have always been something I’ve found highly intriguing. The Northern Lights are on my bucket list.

My father had a profound interest in astronomy and passed that love onto me. From sitting outside together and watching the stars, to showing me how to use my first telescope, he made sure I appreciated science and the sky. When he was in his twenties, he designed and built a telescope for one of his nephews. This would have been in the 1940s. That telescope remained operational into the 21st Century.

From the early origins of Man, we have looked to the heavens for signs and symbols. In days of old, people lived in fear of an eclipse, many believing the sun was devoured by demons or dragons. Others that the sun and moon waged war. Superstitions ranged from fear of going outside, to an eclipse being harmful to pregnant women, to children who were born during an eclipse turning into mice. In 6th Century B.C., a war between the Medes and Lydians ended abruptly because of an eclipse. The armies on both sides believed the darkening of the sun was a sign the gods were displeased by their fighting. On the more favorable side, Italians believed flowers planted during an eclipse would bloom with brighter colors than natural.

Mondays rarely make it onto my list of favorite days, but this one will go down as being special. Even if haze or clouds make the eclipse less than stellar, I love that people have taken such a keen interest in the sky, and are looking forward to a rare celestial event.

Silhouette of four people on a hillside watching a solar eclipse

Are you in the path of the eclipse? If so, what do you have planned for today? Is the excitement rampant where you are? Most importantly, have you ever experienced a solar eclipse? Let’s celebrate the event in the comments below!

Mothman Memes #PointPleasantSeries #UrbanLegends

I’ve been doing a lot of playing around on Twitter lately. After blogging, it’s my favorite form of social media and I find it a great place to connect with others. I also love the variety of graphic Tweets I find there. Novelicious and Abandoned Places are two of my favorite Twitter feeds with amazing graphics. If you haven’t visited them before, you might want to give them a looksee.

With the last of my Point Pleasant novels, A Desolate Hour releasing, I decided I needed a new pinned Tweet. I change it out every now and then depending on the promo I’m doing at the time. I also decided the other two books in the series could benefit from ehanced visual representation, especially with book one, A Thousand Yesteryears, currently on sale for .99c

Here’s what I’ve been up to:

A Thousand Yesteryears (Book 1)
Banner ad for A Thousand Yesteryears by Mae Clair features the night sky over an old farmhouse

Behind a legend lies the truth…

As a child, Eve Parrish lost her father and her best friend, Maggie Flynn, in a tragic bridge collapse. Fifteen years later, she returns to Point Pleasant to settle her deceased aunt’s estate. Though much has changed about the once thriving river community, the ghost of tragedy still weighs heavily on the town, as do rumors and sightings of the Mothman, a local legend. When Eve uncovers startling information about her aunt’s death, that legend is in danger of becoming all too real.

Caden Flynn is one of the few lucky survivors of the bridge collapse, but blames himself for coercing his younger sister out that night. He’s carried that guilt for fifteen years, unaware of darker currents haunting the town. It isn’t long before Eve’s arrival unravels an old secret—one that places her and Caden in the crosshairs of a deadly killer.

Universal Purchase Link | Currently .99c from all book retailers

~ooOOoo~

A Cold Tomorrow (Book 2)

Banner Ad for A Cold tomorrow by Mae Clair features road through a meadow near few trees and foggy in forest at night

Where secrets make their home… 

Stopping to help a motorist in trouble, Katie Lynch stumbles upon a mystery as elusive as the Mothman legend that haunts her hometown of Point Pleasant, West Virginia. Could the coded message she finds herald an extraterrestrial visitor? According to locals, it wouldn’t be the first time. And what sense should she make of her young son’s sudden spate of bizarre drawings—and his claim of a late-night visitation? Determined to uncover the truth, Katie only breaks the surface when a new threat erupts. Suddenly her long-gone ex-boyfriend is back and it’s as if he’s under someone else’s control. Not only is he half-crazed, he’s intent on murder.

As a sergeant in the sheriff’s office of the famously uncanny Point Pleasant, Officer Ryan Flynn has learned to tolerate reports of puzzling paranormal events.   But single mom Katie Lynch appears to be in very real danger—and somehow Ryan’s own brother, Caden, is caught up in the madness, too. What the skeptical lawman discovers astounds him—and sends him into action. For stopping whatever evil forces are at play may just keep Katie and Caden alive.

Universal Purchase Link

~ooOOOO~

A Desolate Hour (Book 3)

Banner ad for A Desolate Hour by Mae Clair features Man standing in a dark mysterious forest with bloody lake in foreground

Sins of the past could destroy all of their futures . . .

For generations, Quentin Marsh’s family has seen its share of tragedy, though he remains skeptical that their misfortunes are tied to a centuries-old curse. But to placate his pregnant sister, Quentin makes the pilgrimage to Point Pleasant, West Virginia, hoping to learn more about the brutal murder of a Shawnee chief in the 1700s. Did one of the Marsh ancestors have a hand in killing Chief Cornstalk—the man who cursed the town with his dying breath?

While historian Sarah Sherman doesn’t believe in curses either, she’s compelled to use her knowledge of Point Pleasant to uncover the long-buried truth. The river town has had its own share of catastrophes, many tied to the legendary Mothman, the winged creature said to haunt the woods. But Quentin’s arrival soon reveals that she may have more of a stake than she realized. It seems that she and Quentin possess eerily similar family heirlooms. And the deeper the two of them dig into the past, the more their search enrages the ancient mystical forces surrounding Point Pleasant. As chaos and destruction start to befall residents, can they beat the clock to break the curse before the Mothman takes his ultimate revenge?

Universal Purchase Link

~ooOOoo~

And there you have my Twitter memes. I’ve also added them to the book pages on my website, and would be delighted if you share them around should you stumble over them in your online roaming. I’ve been meaning to create these for a while but had to finally buckle down and set aside the time. Once I did, it was a fun and creative exercise. I’d still like to make a few for my older books, and a few more for my Point Pleasant series. As always, time is the enemy.

Do you use graphics to promote your books? If so, have you found them too be helpful? I remember the days when it was enough to make a Tweet and add a link, but Twitter has become a visual medium. Personally, I love that. Especially now that images don’t count into those 140 characters. I’ve definitely been sucked in by the beautiful graphic promos I’ve seen on Twitter, and have even bought books as a result. How about you?

And most importantly—how do you like my Mothman memes? The last one is my personal favorite. 😀

Where Have All the Bloggers Gone?

Recently, it dawned on me that many of the bloggers I followed five years ago have faded into the woodwork. I was a newbie back then, and there was a core group of writers I developed a rapport with, many starting out themselves. Most of us bonded through Six Sentence Sunday, a weekly blog share. Over the years many have stopped posting, a few embraced Facebook as their platform of choice, and—sadly—one passed away.

Every now and then I might hear from an old friend and that contact instills a sense of whimsy for the early days. When publishing was new and scary, and terms like blog tour, media kit, and and mobi were Greek. If I’ve lost contact, some of that is my own fault.

After two books that were romantic in nature, I made a switch to mysteries and romantic suspense. As an author I’m happy where I’m at, straddling a line that crosses genres and has moved the emphasis away from the bedroom. But it makes me wonder—where have all the bloggers gone?

a stack of old letters tied together with string beside a fountain pen

Even within the last few years, new friends have come and gone, surfacing on the grid while working on their novel, only to disappear after the release. My Twitter stream is filled with authors who launched a profile only to have crickets replace their feed months later. What is it about this industry—yes, it is an industry to those who stick with it—that devours staying power?

Is it the fact that we have to juggle multiple tasks—writing, editing, book promotion, social media exposure, reading, betas, ARCs—in addition to our family life and day careers? Being an author is not for the faint of heart, and I will be the first to admit there have been  times when the pressure made me want to toss in the towel. The only thing that kept me going was the thought that I would have to start over, rebuilding all that I had worked to obtain. For even as I thought about quitting there was no doubt that I would be back. Writing is not something I can walk away from. It’s been a constant in my life from the time I was a child, and I have no doubt it will remain so until I leave this Earth for good.

That said, my blog has languished recently due to the constraints of daily life. I’m going to try to rectify that and hope to return to a more regular posting routine. For those of you who don’t already know, I vanish offline each week from Friday evening to Sunday evening, the intervening hours set aside for family and my regular writing routine. I try to catch up with the blog posts I have missed by Monday, but due to the sheer volume of blogs I follow, it’s not always possible. If I miss you on the weekend, I will catch you during the week. I don’t want to be one of those bloggers who vanishes into the woodwork. I have made many good friends over the last few years. New friends I don’t want to lose.

Where have all the bloggers gone? Right where we’ve always been—supporting and helping each other. For the record, you guys rock.

Old Writings and Decades Past

Monday of a new week, almost a new month, seemed a good time to roll out something I’ve never really shared before. Back in the day (way back in the day) I used to experiment with poetry. I don’t know anything about forms, or proper meter, but that never stopped me from experimenting. Recently, while digging around in computer files, I came across my poetry folder. Random exercises, these have been languishing on my computer. They’re never going to see the light of day in a book or anywhere else, so I decided to share some of them here. We all have early forms of writing we experiment with, and this was one of mine.

The first piece is about King David of the Old Testament. He is someone I loved reading about and still do. Back in day I penned this short poem to express that fondness:

Stained glass image of King David with harpFor the Psalmist 

Ancient words
penned by an ancient hand,
centuries faded but music still sweet.
From pasture to kingdom
your harp sang praise.
That I might do the same
and dance before the ark
or mourn beloved Absalom,
taken before peace could be sown.

Sweet singer of Israel,
Son of Jesse,
I linger still
in the melody of your song.

~ooOOoo~

That was one of the very few poems I wrote without rhyming verse. I still remember as a kid, when my dad introduced me to a rhyming dictionary and explained how it worked. He knew I loved to write, but poetry was something I’d never tried. My first attempts failed miserably. I was in my twenties when I wrote this:

Crossfire

night sky illuminated with lightning above silhouette of treesLightning dances on a midnight sky,
mushrooming fire and ancient sword,
conjured, unleashed by the Nether Lord.

How we struggle to appease our guilt,
puppets pulled by tattered string,
jesters dancing on a broken gallows,
capering and scraping to the Gallow’s King.

The Weaver of Life threads her loom,
cracking and shuddering beneath destiny’s hand.
We wander down corridors soiled with souls,
never stopping to ponder life’s final command,

In a cathedral of stone, we unleash fragile dragons,
quietly ruing our own masquerade,
forever refining and silently polishing,
gold-plaited images of Self we have made.

Tarnished but chosen, we forge our own demons,
plucked from the bowels of a mute, angry fire,
we are children of circumstance, knighted by time,
torn between failure and noble desire.

~ooOOoo~

Yes, I tended to be a bit strange even then. But all of that strangeness and those old creativity avenues—including my attempts at poetry (more to come)—allowed my writing to venture into the areas it has today. I haven’t written poetry in years, but I still look back on those moments with fondness.

What types of writing did you experiment with when you were younger? Have they shaped your writing today? Did you ever try your hand at poetry? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Times a Tickin’ . . . Kim Cox #RRBC

Today, I’m happy to host my RRBC sister, Kim Cox, with her latest release, Before We Wed. She’s brought along a great post, pics of her pups (I’m such a sap for animals) and a fun surprise freebie. This is Kim’s first appearance on my blog so I hope you’ll make her (and her pooches) feel welcome!

Times a Tickin’ . . .

Hello from Asheville, NC!

My three dogs love to run around and act crazy, playing and tackling each other. They are truly my best friends. We have two West Highland White Terriers (Westies), named Scooter and Harley, and one gray and white Yorkie mix, named Candi. I found the Westies for my husband who is a stay-at-home husband and chainsaw artist. Now he has a Harley and a Scooter. He really loves that little joke. Candi, we inherited from my mother-in-law. She’s the sweetest of all.

In All This Time, Jenny has Angel, a five-year-old basset hound. We used to have a sweet little dog with that name. I still miss that little pup. She belonged to my brother-in-law but lived with us for about five years.

See the little innocents (yeah, right) below:

Pups Relaxing Inside

pupsRelaxing2

Pups’ Playground

pupsPayground2

It’s so hard to get them all to look at me at the same time.

So, I guess by now you’re wondering about the heading line, Times a tickin’ – That’s the clock ticking for the 48-hour special I have for you. And here it is . . .

All This Time will be FREE for the next 48 hours only to those who have the password. That’s right! I’ve put a bonus link at the end of Before We Wed—my newest release.

Click this LINK to purchase Before We Wed, scroll to the end of the book, read the instructions, and click the link to get your FREE book. The link at the end of the book will take you to Instafreebie where you’ll enter the password. The password is the 5th word in the first paragraph of Chapter 13 of my book, Before We Wed.

BWW-TwitterHeader3

That’s it! Easy peasy.

But hurry, because this special bonus only lasts for 48 hours. Already have a copy? Get it for a friend. You can’t beat getting 2 books for the price of 1.

Reviews are coming in for BEFORE WE WED from readers

“Wow! What a ride.”

“…so engrossing that I couldn’t put it down”

“Sarah and Jon have a wonderful complementing dynamic.”

“I enjoyed the plot, strong characters, and mind boggling mystery.”

“A great love story with loads of action and steaminess. VERY RECOMMENDED! 5 Stars”

Before We Wed (Book 2) Style & Profile series

BWW-Cover-XSMJust as Sarah Martin and Jon Clayton say their vows, the police crash the wedding to arrest the groom. Jon is terrified and Sarah is heartbroken. Thankfully, their friends support them emotionally and help find Jon an excellent attorney.

Is Jon truly innocent, and does he have no idea how the damaging evidence found its way into his business? Are there more sinister people involved? Will Sarah find the evidence she needs to clear him, or will she find out he’s fooled them all? If someone else is framing Jon, who is it and what are their motives?

Click this LINK to get Before We Wed

All This Time (Book 1) Style & Profile series

ATTMarriage of Convenience, Best Friend Romance, with someone trying to kill Jenny and ruin her life:

Can Jenny and Trevor make a life together while uncovering a common enemy? Treachery, Greed, and Psychosis threaten to tear it all apart.

At thirty, Jenny Morgan’s biological clock is ticking. But as a fashion magazine CEO with a busy schedule and no significant other, her wish is unlikely to come true. When her father receives a potentially terminal diagnosis, he longs for a grandchild before he dies. Jenny’s only immediate available option is her single co-worker and best friend, Trevor Drake.

Can she really trust him to be a good husband?

To read more about the books, click the following titles: All This Time or Before We Wed

And don’t forget . . .

Once you’ve loaded Before We Wed on your Kindle, iPad, Nook, computer, etc., scroll to the end, click the link to get your FREE book. The link will take you to Instafreebie where you’ll enter the correct password. The password is the 5th word in the first paragraph of Chapter 13.

Here’s that link one more time: Click this LINK to get Before We Wed

Drop me a line. I’d love to hear about your pets and that GREAT book you just read. Until next time, have a great day.


All This Time - Kim Cox 2

Why do you love to read? What are your favorite books, genres, and authors? I’d love to know.

 

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Contact kim@kimcoxauthor.com for offer.

Do You Believe in Curses by Mae Clair

Do you believe in curses? I’m over at Staci Troilo’s blog today discussing how an ancient curse is tied to the town of Point Pleasant, West Virginia, and the urban legend of the Mothman. It’s all part of the background incorporated into my latest release, A Desolate Hour.

Staci is a wonderful blogger, fantastic author, and is always ready to support others. She’s also an exceptional critique partner to yours truly 🙂
If you haven’t already clicked the “follow” button on her blog, I highly recommend a click!

Staci Troilo

I’m thrilled to welcome friend and fellow writer Mae Clair back to my little slice of the blogosphere today. She just released book three of her Point Pleasant series, A Desolate Hour, which I reviewed not long ago.

Today she wants to discuss curses, and I can’t think of a better person to dive into the supernatural with us. Here she is; let’s give her a warm welcome.


Do You Believe in Curses?

From literature to the Bible, to famous objects and haunted places, curses abound. There are cursed objects (the Hope Diamond), cursed places (King Tut’s Tomb), cursed movies (Poltergeist), and even cursed performances (multiple instances of the play MacBeth). But what about a town? Is it possible for an entire town to be cursed and to carry that misfortune through centuries?

Point Pleasant, WVPoint Pleasant, WV—not the collapsed bridge (obviously)

My Point Pleasant series has been…

View original post 822 more words

The Enhanced League by C. S. Boyack #NewRelease #SpeculativeFiction #Baseball #RRBC

Craig Boyack is a regular visitor on my blog, but no matter how many times he drops by, he always has something new and unusual to share. That slant is par for the course with Craig’s main genre as a speculative fiction author. His latest release, The Enhanced League is truly unique and possibly my favorite of his varied works. I was a beta reader on this novel and was mesmerized by the creativity involved. You can find my 5-Star Amazon review here.

I asked Craig to write about the showmanship he incorporated into his baseball league with mascots and other splashy theatrics. (I loved the Kawaii Girls). Another favorite part for me were the vignettes with sportscasters Ricky Sunderland and Uber Velasquez. Pure gold! Trust me—you’re going to want to pick this one up!

~ooOOoo~

Thanks for the invite, Mae. It’s nice to have places to talk about our new books when they release. I know you have one dropping very soon, and you’re always welcome to borrow my blog space too.

My newest is a collection of short stories and anthems, but this time they tell an overarching story. The setting is a fictional baseball league where nobody monitors the performance enhancing drugs, and the rules are slightly different. It’s called The Enhanced League, and at 99¢, I think it’s a smokin deal.

Mae served as one of my beta readers, and she liked the pomp that went along with this league. The old rules of conduct are gone, and it’s a bit more like professional wrestling in its presentation.

The stadiums are pretty outrageous. From the Montreal Mounties’ bullpen car that’s actually a fully blown hotrod to the taiko drummers in Japan, there is a lot of flash here. The league is truly international in scope.

Mae also liked some of the behind-the-scenes characters too. Putting on a good show requires a lot of manpower. They can’t all get an individual story, but they make appearances to spice up the tales that did get written. You get to see the efforts of the grounds crew where the field has to be moved outside to get the grass to grow. There are actual stadiums that do this now, so it wasn’t much of a stretch.

There are the Kawaii Girls in Niigata, Japan. These stadium performers are a precision team of virtual anime characters that add a bit of flavor. There’s no doubt they work hard at their performance, even though they irritate the main character in that story. This story even features people wearing inflatable sumo suits running the bases during the seventh inning stretch.

You’ll never actually meet Captain Rhumm, a more traditional team mascot, but he adds a little something to the team from Puerto Rico.

The main theme is one year in the life of The Enhanced League. The peripheral stuff is fun, but the stories deal with falling stock and rising fortunes. There are tragic tales of drug abuse, and some advancements in medical technology. You’ll meet a few misfits who see this league as their only chance to play professional baseball. I even touch upon how women are treated in the workplace.

If this sounds like a fun mid-season break to you, I’d appreciate you picking up a copy.

Thanks, Mae.

Book cover for The Enhanced League by C.S. Boyack shows close up of home plate with a needed and baseball glove

Blurb:
The Enhanced league is a collection of short stories and anthems centered around a year in a fictional baseball league. It has a slight science fiction background. This league has a lot more pomp than you might be used to, and nobody seems to care if the players use performance enhancing drugs.

Stories involve existing heroes, up and comers, and falling stars. While there are the obvious stories that take place on the field of play, there are also human interest stories that take place around the baseball gyrations. These stories involve scouting, trades, ruthless business decisions, and even relationships.

I enjoyed researching and bringing you The Enhanced League, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. — CB

PURCHASE THE ENHANCED LEAGUE FROM AMAZON

Meet C. S. Boyack
Author C. S. BoyackI was born in a town called Elko, Nevada. I like to tell everyone I was born in a small town in the 1940s. I’m not quite that old, but Elko has always been a little behind the times. This gives me a unique perspective of earlier times, and other ways of getting by. Some of this bleeds through into my fiction.

I moved to Idaho right after the turn of the century, and never looked back. My writing career was born here, with access to other writers and critique groups I jumped in with both feet.

I like to write about things that have something unusual. My works are in the realm of science fiction, paranormal, and fantasy. The goal is to entertain you for a few hours. I hope you enjoy the ride.

Connect with Craig at the following haunts:
Blog | My Novels | Twitter | Goodreads | Facebook | Pinterest 

New Release: A Desolate Hour by Mae Clair #KensingtonMystery #Mothman #RRBC

I’m celebrating a book birthday today and hope you’ll join me! A Desolate Hour, the final novel in my Point Pleasant series, is finally available for purchase. I’m wrapping up all the plot threads begun in the first two novels, A Thousand Yesteryears and A Cold Tomorrow. Caden Flynn and all my regular characters are back, along with a few new ones. The Mothman, of course, is front and center.

When I set out to write the Point Pleasant series, I envisioned the mystery relating to the origins of the Mothman spanning all three books. But I also wanted each book to focus on an aspect of Point Pleasant folklore in addition to my favorite cryptid.

In book one, A Thousand Yesteryears, I shared the history of the Silver Bridge tragedy. Book two, A Cold Tomorrow, saw the introduction of UFOs and Men in Black. The final installment, A Desolate Hour, plays off the legend of Shawnee Indian Chief Cornstalk who set all the other elements in motion by cursing the town as he lay dying.

At long last, the Mothman’s story hurtles to a conclusion!

Book cover for A Desolate Hour by Mae Clair shows a small town overlooking a river at night, full moon overhead, cover in wash of green red and black with white lettering

A Desolate Hour Sins of the past could destroy all of their futures . . .

For generations, Quentin Marsh’s family has seen its share of tragedy, though he remains skeptical that their misfortunes are tied to a centuries-old curse. But to placate his pregnant sister, Quentin makes the pilgrimage to Point Pleasant, West Virginia, hoping to learn more about the brutal murder of a Shawnee chief in the 1700s. Did one of the Marsh ancestors have a hand in killing Chief Cornstalk—the man who cursed the town with his dying breath?

While historian Sarah Sherman doesn’t believe in curses either, she’s compelled to use her knowledge of Point Pleasant to uncover the long-buried truth. The river town has had its own share of catastrophes, many tied to the legendary Mothman, the winged creature said to haunt the woods. But Quentin’s arrival soon reveals that she may have more of a stake than she realized. It seems that she and Quentin possess eerily similar family heirlooms. And the deeper the two of them dig into the past, the more their search enrages the ancient mystical forces surrounding Point Pleasant. As chaos and destruction start to befall residents, can they beat the clock to break the curse before the Mothman takes his ultimate revenge? . . .

~ooOOoo~

A few snippets from advance reviews:

From Staci Troilo, Author:
“A gripping end to a remarkable series…A Desolate Hour features genuine characters and intricate plotlines, fast-paced action and eerie, palpable settings.”
Read the full review

From dandelions inspired Book Reviews:
A Desolate Hour is so incredibly action-packed I’m not sure how to review this novel without giving away spoilers . . . truly a novel that once you start reading it, there is no stopping until you’ve reached the end.”
Read the full review 

From Fundinmental Book Reviews:
A Desolate Hour has an aura of menace from the beginning . . . If you are a creature feature lover, if you crave reading about myths and legends, if you like to be scared and surprised, run and soar through the air, this is one series you don’t want to miss.”
Read the full review 

~ooOOoo~

A DESOLATE HOUR Universal Purchase Link (All Retailers):
https://books2read.com/u/bzpJEq

If you haven’t read the first two books in the series, A Desolate Hour can be read as a standalone novel. You can also purchase A Thousand Yesteryears and A Cold Tomorrow from all major booksellers. Don’t you think it’s time you met the Mothman? 😊

The Life and Times of Ichabod Brooks by Charles Yallowitz #NewRelease #Fantasy #Magic

Charles Yallowitz has a new release to share!

Spend your summer with Ichabod Brooks in this 11 story collection!  $2.99 on Amazon!

Cover Art by Circecorp

Enter the world of Windemere with 11 action adventure short stories featuring a man who is out to make an honest living.

Some heroes seek fame. Some seek fortune. Others simply want to save the world. Ichabod Brooks only wants to put food on the table for his family.

Known and respected as the man who can get any job done, Ichabod has seen his share of adventure. Most of which have been highly exaggerated by bards. Still, the man has his famous reputation for a reason. Whether it be climbing a temperamental mountain for eggs or escorting orphans to their new homes, Ichabod takes every job seriously and makes sure he is as prepared as he can be. Not that it helps since things always take a turn for the worse.

Available on Amazon!

Add it on Goodreads!

Excerpt: Preparing for Galaces

“Is this any way to greet an old friend?” a dwarf in dark gray chainmail asks before plugging his ears with his dark red beard. Wanting the bard to stop, the mountaineer marches over and puts a hand over the young woman’s mouth. “Are you supposed to use her as bait? I did hear there’s a hobgoblin pack that moved in a few months ago. You know how those drooling scavengers love elf flesh.”

“Sorry about that, Dex. She latched on at my last stop and I haven’t been able to shake her off,” Ichabod replies, shaking his guide’s hand. He rubs his own black and white beard at the sight of how his friend shows no sign of graying. “I have to give this one credit for tenacity, but this is where we part ways. Galaces Mountain is not a place to go unless you have experience, an excellent guide, and common sense. So far, I don’t see you having any of those things and I’m not going to babysit.”

“I must go. That’s the only way I can write about your newest adventure,” the bard insists, unwittingly proving Ichabod right. She crosses her arms and meets the icy stare of the dwarf, who she considers leaving out of her tale. “Being the first to speak of your climb will help my reputation. I promise not to cause any trouble and pull my own weight. Elves are graceful and agile, which makes us perfect companions for whatever it is you’re doing. Besides, Galaces Mountain doesn’t look like that bad a climb. The stories must be nothing more than colorful exaggerations.”

Ichabod puts on a pair of white-palmed gloves and slips a blue band on his finger, a charge going through his body to enhance his lungs. “I suddenly relate very well to this mountain. Take a look at the empty space between us and Galaces. You’ll see why this place has earned a reputation.”

The bard puts her lute over her shoulder and walks to the yellow rope, which sparks with a mild magic. At first, she is unsure of what she is supposed to pay attention to among the shrubs and fallen rocks. It takes the elf a few minutes to recognize weather worn bones sticking out from under a boulder. The limbs are splayed since the climber plummeted with the rough stone pressed against his back and the landing embedded him in the ground. Knowing what to look for, the bard realizes that there are at least ten old corpses hidden by the mountain’s litter. The bard spots the fresh body of a yellow-skinned creature sitting behind a shrub, the armored creature crumpled from landing butt first after its fall. She is about to ask a question when a small pain runs up her arm and she collapses into a magical slumber.

“Guess that’s more humane than knocking her on the head,” Dex mentions while Ichabod carries the young woman to the dwarf’s cart. He shields his eyes as he stares at the churning clouds that have been trapped around the peak. “Looks like the eagles captured a storm beneath their nest this year. Means the winds are going to be brutal and the tunnels are infested with horned spiders and revelers. Not going to be an easy trip. Sure, you don’t want someone else to take this contract?”

“I’d love to hand this off to someone else, but Chef Zyrk always insists that I take the job. I have no injuries, diseases, or family events, so I’m here,” Ichabod replies, sheathing his sleep-inducing shortsword. As an afterthought, he grabs a horse blanket and tosses it over the bard to hide her from view. “The Starwind Eagles lay eggs every ten years and now is the time to get to them. Wait any longer and the mountain will be crawling with hunters. A youngster wouldn’t know that or have you as a guide.”

The dwarf grins as he lifts the rope and gestures for his friend to lead the way. “They also don’t have your wife making deals that you can’t say no to. She mentioned that you’re getting three times the usual pay because this baby is going to be prepared for Duke Solomon’s wedding. Personally, I’m looking forward to your wife’s cooking after this. Surprised your gut isn’t huge considering that woman can make a pot roast even the gods would praise. Did you happen to bring some of her dishes for the road?”

“I can cook too, you know.”

“You can bake, Ichabod. Not the same as cooking in my book.”

“So you don’t want the cookies I brought.”

“Oatmeal and cranberry?”

“With a touch of cinnamon.”

*****

About the Author:

Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you, and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

Blog: www.legendsofwindemere.com

Twitter: @cyallowitz

Facebook: Charles Yallowitz

Website: www.charleseyallowitz.com

May It Be A Good One!

Sometimes Fridays can’t come soon enough. My husband and I had a great July 4th and even enjoyed spending time in our pool. The water was beautiful, but in and around the 4th we had a few road bumps.

My computer slowed to a crawl and started tossing out blue screens. To top it off, Chrome stopped working. Not the end of the world because I was able to hop over to Firefox, but the bulk of my bookmarks are on Chrome. With a trifecta of computer woes, I decided it was time to cart the all-in-one in for repair. I took my laptop too. The wifi hasn’t worked since a Windows update half a year ago. Both are still with the Geek Squad.

On the plus side, I decided to treat myself to a MAC book. My books have been making a few dollars the last two years so I decided it was time to splurge a little—especially since I’ll be using the MAC for my business. After a trip to the Apple store, I came home with one of the new retina MACs. I wanted the small size for easy portability, but honestly, all the MAC book brands I looked at are very light.

It doesn’t show well in the photo below, but I got the rose gold finish, which is gorgeous. I’m still dealing with a bit of a learning curve, but getting on fairly good. If I could just figure out how to right click or backspace nirvana would happen.

an open MAC Book setting on table

Thursday, my first day back on the day job was fraught with problems. I won’t go into details but it was not a good day. I came home that night only to find out the UV light and piping to our well pump had some kind of issue. Don’t ask me what it was. All I know is that it involved soldering, a blow torch, and hours without water while my husband repaired whatever needed to be  fixed. Thank God he’s as adept as he is and we didn’t have to call a repairman.

TGIF! I’m hoping today turns out to be better than yesterday. With any luck I may even get my computer and laptop back. If not, at least it’s Friday.

If you missed the posts on Story Empire this week, Harmony Kent shared the second part of her series on Commas and How to Use Them, and Joan Hall explained how to Read Your Way to Better Writing. Today, you can discover the latest Curated Content for Writers gathered by the SE authors.

Check back on Monday too, when yours truly will be in the Story Empire wheelhouse with a post entitled “What Would You Do?”  Until then, Happy Friday and Happy Weekend. May it be a good one for all!