Till Death Do We Part: Part II

Though he has the skills to survive, does he have the will?

Part II
When there was no response, he hung up the phone and pushed himself to his feet. Moving from room to room, he looked out each window at the nightmare images that lay beyond. Something had happened while he slept and he felt the first nagging suspicion that he’d seen this before. Not in real life. But in a movie his daughter had insisted he watch with her at the theater. Something to do with the dead coming back to life and feeding on the living.

But that wasn’t possible. Dead was dead and the living had nothing to fear from them. On the east side of the house he watched through the picture window as Ginny, his neighbor down the street, hobbled across the field between their houses on her cane. Her face was a mask of terror as she struggled to outdistance her pursuers.

Eddie recognized one of the three people chasing her in a slow motion race she was destined to lose. There was Bobby from down the street. He had come around the neighborhood the year before, proudly displaying the Arrow of Light award he’d earned from the local Scout pack. With him were two strangers, adults, one dressed in the uniform of a Scout master, the other in a long dress. Bobby’s parents, he supposed, as he’d never met them. At the sight of the three chasing Ginny across the field, he was struck by an odd thought. The family that feeds together stays together. There wasn’t a creative bone in his body to account for this sudden insight.

Unable to look away, he watched helplessly as Bobby caught up with Ginny, who spun around and swatted at him with her cane. Bobby ignored the strike across the crown of his head as he reached out for her, catching her nightgown in one clawed hand, stopping her forward progress just enough for his parents to surround her. Eddie had to look away as they fell upon her. Closing his eyes to block out the sight,  he couldn’t completely block out the screams of agony that came to him through the double-paned window.

Holding his hands over his ears, he recalled his wife’s message, and on the black screen of his mind he saw her struggling to escape an approaching hoard of the undead.

Twenty-five years of standing on concrete, eight hours per day, five days a week had taken its toll. Rachel had to wear a brace on one leg in order to walk. It was physically impossible for her to run and the realization of what must have happened to her awakened a primal rage that boiled at the center of his soul. She had never done anything to anyone. She didn’t deserve to die like that. The rage sent him to his gun cabinet where he retrieved his thirty-ought-six deer rifle.

Back at the picture window, he opened one of the side windows and sighted through his scope at the three things he could no longer consciously refer to as people. They were hunkered over Ginny’s steaming remains. Bobby looked up, and Eddie imagined he could sense his presence on some primitive, instinctive level. Through the scope the features of his face came into sharp focus. Gone was the boyish innocence of a young child. In its place was an animalistic rage that twisted his features into a caricature of its former self. His once brown eyes were covered with gray cataracts that added to his sinister appearance.

Eddie gently squeezed the trigger and rode the recoil with his eye glued to the eyepiece of the scope. Bobby’s head exploded as the one hundred and eighty grain slug found its mark at the center of his forehead. Bobby’s mother and father looked around and died within moments of one another.

Breathing heavily, his ears ringing from the sound of the shots trapped in the living room, he watched as Ginny struggled to sit up. Sighting though the scope once more he zeroed in on Ginny’s forehead and quickly dispatched her.

Through the ringing sound in his ears he heard his phone, and he raced into the kitchen where he’d left it. He expected to see his wife’s name displayed, but what he saw awakened a cold ball of terror in the pit of his stomach.

It was Nathan, his oldest grandson.

Eddie pushed the button to accept the call and held the phone next to his ear. He heard a heavy breathing, a soft sobbing as Nathan cried into his phone. Nathan lived in the south side of town with his mom and her boyfriend.

“Paw, is that you?” Nathan’s terrified voice came through the receiver.

“Nathan, hey buddy, are you all right?” Eddie said.

“Mommy’s trying to hurt me, there’s something wrong with her, there’s something wrong with everyone,” Nathan sobbed with a hitch in his voice.

“Where are you, buddy?” Eddie was clenching and unclenching his hand, that primal rage smoldering in the pit of his stomach. He grabbed the edge of the table so tightly the muscles of his arm stood out in sharp contrast.

“I’m in my bedroom. They’re trying to get through my door.”

“Is your door locked, buddy?”

“Yes, please, Paw, don’t let them hurt me.”

Eddie could hear listless slaps against the door of Nathan’s room.

“I’m coming, buddy. You stay right there, I’m coming to get you.”

“Please hurry, Paw. I love you. Please hurry.”

“I love you too, buddy, I’m on my way.”

The connection went dead and he looked at his phone. He still had a full battery so either Nathan had hung up or his phone had died.

He didn’t know what to expect once he got into town, so with a pistol in his hip holster, and a twelve gauge pump shotgun slung over his shoulder, he stepped onto his back porch. From his other shoulder hung a backpack filled with ammo.

Brutus raced across the yard towards him, his hackles still raised, but his normally yellow coat was stained with blood. Eddie saw that his once-soft brown eyes were now clouded with gray cataracts and he leveled his pistol at his approaching form. The thirty-two caliber slug cleaved his skull and Brutus, driven by momentum, plowed nose first into the ground where he came to a stop with his hind legs still trying to push him forward. Eddie hated having to do it. He loved Brutus almost as much as he loved his wife; he’d been a faithful companion, and he didn’t deserve what had happened to him. His only consolation was the hope that Brutus would find peace in death and play for eternity with an unlimited supply of tennis balls.

To be continued!

Part Three

Till Death Do We Part is just one of the stories in my collection 9 Dark Tales

Also available from these other fine online retailers.




Fridays 5 with Nina Norstrom

Nina Norstrom, grew up in a small suburban town outside Chicago, Illinois. She received her bachelor’s degree from Concordia University. Norstrom is affiliated with and a member of various writers’ groups. In 1992, she started journal writing to help find solace. But it wasn’t until 2010 that she was able to publish her first writing experience. The book, "Not a Blueprint: It’s the Shoe Prints that Matter, A Journey Through Toxic Relationships," is a representation of her growth and signifies a milestone in her recovery from toxic relationships, to the transition of non-toxicity.
Nina says, “Medically, this whole program of journaling has been a healing process.  It has helped to shape and transform a toxic journey into a prescription for healthy emotional wellness. Truly, I’ve been blessed to have seen light at the end of a tunnel ─ and knowing I’ve reached a level of personal growth.” 

“It was through my dark journey, I’d learned a powerful lesson: God never gives up on us.  And it’s that reason alone why we should never give up on ourselves.”

Personable, compassionate, and direct . . .

She is a passionate champion for many noteworthy causes, including those battling toxic relationships. When not reading or writing, she can be found mountain climbing, taking long walks in a park or alongside a beach, sitting at an entertainer’s concert, supporting an author at their book event, somewhere traveling, and even jumping in to exert her energy by doing volunteer work, at a variety of venues.

1) When did you first get serious about writing?

A.) Perhaps, the seriousness of my writing was a two-fold process.  Initially, I didn’t start out with wanting to become a writer.  It was my traumatic experiences which lead me to a writing journey.  I’d kept a journal for years about that ordeal, and it became my best friend.  It was the one and only thing I had to release the pain.

Yes, as a result of my experience, I had been going through therapy for quite some years, but there was nothing more rewarding and comforting than writing about the events and the pain. It was as if I was the patient, and my writing was the therapist.  Inside this writing bubble, I could do all the speaking without any interruptions.  I would just let it pour out!

The other major reason was because I’d felt trapped as if inside a burning inferno.  Inside that world was rawness and pain staged and staggered with tons of toxic emotions.  The news of hearing, “Your child has a disease,” that there is no cure for; only remission.  It was that news that made it even worst.   For me, it was an experience I knew no parent should ever have to endure.  In this journey God had chosen my family to endured, I felt suffocated.  To nurture those wounds and find physical healing, I used my pen and paper to escape that toxic world.  My writing helped to break through the rawness and pain barriers and was used as a release vehicle for all that toxicity.   The rawness and pain just ate at me, it wouldn’t go away. I just couldn’t shake it.  So once I finally tapped into a part of me that was ready to heal, it was that writing which would become a “physical wound healing relationship,” for me.

So actually, I wrote as a means of therapy; not realizing those pages were about someone’s personal journey, and of all people, mine.

2) What is the hardest part for you about writing?

A)The whole darn process with all of its writing elements; and having to put that on paper for someone to understand.

Especially, after you’ve maneuvered through a healing process, and have to go back and relive some dark toxic emotions that you’ve buried deep within.  Having buried them all those years, you really don’t want those emotions to be erupted by talking about them (that can be very painful, even to this day).  Yet, you’re forced to tap into them in a manner so that it makes sense on paper.  When something is painful, sometimes you have to get away from the writing for several days, or more.  Once returning, then you need to find a way to push through to give life and character to that which has caused you grief.  And that can be most hard to do when writing.

Click on cover for more info or to order!

Synopsis: Allowing us to learn lessons, let go of toxicity, and gain insight, relationship can play a powerful role in our lives. They are formed with people, alcohol, animals, battlefields, diseases, drugs, environments, and even our emotions. Whether toxic or nontoxic, relationships are an integral component of daily living. Author Nina Norstrom lost her child to a disease, but that wasn't the only toxic relationship she endured. In this book, she explores the effects that her relationships with grief, pain, trauma, and forgiveness have had on her life. This tale exposes a mother's struggle to escape her world of toxicity, her journey out of the clutches of diseased relationships, and the shoe prints the experiences have left on her family's history. This story in its raw form projects a remarkable voice to the heroic fight, courage, and bravery gained when striking back to wipe out toxic relationships. Its message reveals that life brings many challenges and that each challenge provides lessons to be learned. This book is not intended to be a blueprint for dealing with diseased relationships. It's about the shoe prints: those symbols of life's journey that are left by our experiences. "Not a Blueprint: It's the Shoe Prints that Matter" is an insightful and inspiring personal story of one family's journey through toxic relationships.

3) How did you feel  upon publication of your first completed project?

A)  For me, it was what I now call my “practice piece.”  The thoughts inside my head was scattered all over the place. It’s that way you know, after being traumatized.   And the writing came out that exact way.   The story inside the book, it was like I didn’t care what was stated; or how it was stated.  In writing it, there would be no structure of characters or scenes. During that phase, characters, scenes, and language meant very little.  The journey itself hadn’t been structured although it had plenty of toxic scenes, in a sense.

Looking back now, it amazed me that the story was published.  And no it was not a self-published product.  The publication was done by a publishing company. Remember now, when I wrote the first side of the story, I was literally trapped in another world.  So writing the first project, actually gave some relief to the pain I’d been experiencing.  I had cursed the pain and journey. I’d finally released all the hurt and pain.  So there it was on every page, inside a book. There it was that journey and what it took to get there.  And that exposure had given a feeling of great accomplishment.

4) What is more important to you, story, or character? Why?

A)Personally, I think they both weigh out the same.  One is no more important than the other.

When dealing with them (story and character), they should go hand in hand.

The story should be a well written one, with structure and development.  And there should always be a message behind any story; and one that could make for an interesting read.  You’d want the audience to stay engrossed into those pages, from beginning to end.

Knowingly, was the start enough to feed their interest? And was the end developed enough to satisfy that interest?

Now, the characters are what shape the story.  Although they’re on paper, you want your reader to be able to visualize them.  So as a writer, you shape them descriptively, bringing them to life.  And as these characters take their places inside the story and move through their plots, reader s will either like them or dislike them.   And having good characterization, can even give a reader a sense of relate-ability.

5)  What is a typical day like in your world?

A) Active, being active, never really trying to stay idle.  But soon as I crawl out of bed, I must give praise to God, for waking me up to see another day; and allowing my feet to touch the ground. Shortly thereafter, I’m looking at all those posted notes attached to the bedroom door.  And they all have the word “volunteer” (tagged) somewhere in its message.  If I’m not scheduled for a particular company to volunteer for that day, I either have to attend a volunteer meeting.

But before I’m off and running to perform those volunteer duties, I’m getting my walk exercise in. On occasion, I tend to sneak in a bit of antique shopping. So there’s always something that’s going to keep me busy and preoccupied. It could be a number of things I have going in a given day.

Author Links:

Website: www.ninanorstrom.com

Personal email: ninanorstrom@ymail.com
Twitter: twitter.com/NorstromNina
Facebook: www.facebook.com/nina.norstrom.547
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nina-norstrom-29589b65
Pinterest: Nina Norstrom
Brand Yourself: Nina Norstrom
Amazon’s Page: amazon.com/author/ninanorstrom

New Release: Nurse Blood

From the twisted imagination of Rebecca Besser comes:

Click on cover for more info or to order!


Sonya Garret roams the bar scene hoping to steal the heart of an unsuspecting victim—literally…

Sonya, better known as Nurse Blood, is part of a team of lethal organ harvesters who seek out the weak to seduce, kill, and part out for profit on the black market. When Sonya meets Daniel McCoy, a young man recovering from a broken engagement, he’s just another kill to line her pockets with quick cash.

Agent David McCoy vows to find out how and why his twin brother Daniel disappeared…

Daniel’s body hasn’t been found, and the leads are slim to none, but it won’t stop David from dedicating his life to solving his brother’s case. When the evidence finally uncovers the shocking truth that Daniel’s disappearance is linked to organ harvesters, David knows his brother is most likely dead. But he’s determined to stop the villains’ killing spree before they strike again.

One last harvest is all Sonya and her team need to put their murderous past behind them…

A family with the rarest blood type in the world is the only thing standing between Sonya and retirement. David McCoy and the FBI are hot on their trail, though, and multiple targets make this the most complicated harvest yet. Will David unravel Sonya’s wicked plans in time to avenge his brother and save an innocent family? Or will Sonya cash in her final kill and escape 

About the author:

I'm the author of "Undead Drive-Thru, Undead Regeneration, Cursed Bounty, Twisted Pathways of Murder & Death, Hall of Twelve,” and “Nurse Blood (Limitless Publishing)." I'm also a graduate of the Institute of Children's Literature. My work has appeared in the Coshocton Tribune, Irish Story Playhouse, Spaceports & Spidersilk, joyful!, Soft Whispers, Illuminata, Common Threads, Golden Visions Magazine, Stories That Lift, Super Teacher Worksheets, Living Dead Press Presents Magazine (Iss. 1 & 2), FrightFest eMagazine, An Xmas Charity Ebook, The Stray Branch, and The Undead That Saved Christmas (Vol. 1 & 2) and the Signals From The Void charity anthologies. I have multiple stories in anthologies by Living Dead Press, Wicked East Press, Pill Hill Press, Hidden Thoughts Press, Knight Watch Press, Coscom Entertainment, Crowded Quarantine Publications, and Collaboration of the Dead (projects), and one (each) in an anthology by Post Mortem Press, NorGus Press, Evil Jester Press, Horrified Press, Atria Books (S&S Digital), and Nocturnal Press Publications. I also have a poem in an anthology by Naked Snake Press and a children’s poem in Oxford Ink Literature Reader 4 from Oxford University Press (India).

My nonfiction children's article about skydiving, written for my writing course with the Institute of Children's Literature, was published by McGraw Hill for NY Assessments.

I'm also an editor and have edited: Dark Dreams: Tales of Terror, Dead Worlds 7: Undead Stories, and Book of Cannibals 2: The Hunger from Living Dead Press; Earth's End from Wicked East Press; End of Days: An Apocalyptic Anthology (Vol. 4 & 5/co-edited) from Living Dead Press; and I've co-editing Feast or Famine (a zombie anthology).

When I'm not busy writing and/or editing, I'm formatting book covers, building/maintaining websites, and writing book reviews.

For more information, visit my website: www.rebeccabesser.com 

Till Death Do We Part: Part I

Image via Freestuff

Though he has the skills to survive, does he have the will?

Part I

Eddie awoke with a start, drifting in that shadowy zone just beneath the surface of full awareness, as the last vestiges of a dream faded to the periphery of his consciousness. In the other room his yellow Lab, Brutus, barked again, driving him the rest of the way awake. He threw back the covers and climbed out of bed. His back reminding him once again that he was no longer a youngster as he shuffled across the floor to see what all the commotion was about. Passing his desk, he saw that he’d missed a call and was about to pick up the phone when Brutus barked again. This was no ordinary bark reserved for the occasional car passing by on the country road where they lived. This bark was deeper, a growling vocalization of fear for those moments when someone knocked at one of the doors.

Rounding the corner into the laundry room, he found Brutus, his hackles up, snarling viciously at the back door.

“Easy there, boy, what’s wrong,” he said as he approached. Brutus looked at him briefly before returning his attention to the back door. He barked again, the sound loud in the narrow room.

Bending over, Eddie looked out the rear window and saw his neighbor standing at the back door.

“What the hell’s wrong with you,” he said to Brutus, who backed away, his hackles still forming a line down his back, as Eddie reached for the door knob. From the other side of the door came a weak knock, a listless slap that momentarily stayed his hand. There was something wrong. Something was out of place. But he couldn’t quite put his finger on what it was.

He looked out the window again and his fatigue gave way to panic when he saw the blood staining the front of his neighbor’s shirt. Something terrible had happened and he hurried to open the door as Brutus barked in a loud, throaty, voice.

“It’s okay, it’s just Virgil,” Eddie said as he attempted to calm his dog.

Brutus barked hysterically. As if he were trying to keep him from unlocking the door, and Eddie glanced at him, annoyed, as he pulled the door open. Thankfully there was a storm door still between them, for at that moment Virgil lunged forward, his mouth open, as he came against the glass of the storm door.

“What the fuck,” Eddie shouted, half terrified by Virgil’s actions. Virgil lunged again, his dentures snapping closed as his lips smeared saliva across the window. It was then he noticed that Virgil was missing an arm. In fact he was missing almost his entire right side from the shoulder to his hip.

Brutus lunged at the door, forcing it open, and darted outside, where he drove Virgil to the ground and jumped on his chest. His front paws pinned Virgil to the ground as the wounded man slapped feebly with his remaining left arm.

Eddie stepped onto the patio, fully intending to pull Brutus off the old man, when he noticed the neighbor who lived behind him. He didn’t know his name yet as he and his wife had only recently moved in, but he was wandering around his front yard wearing only a pair of underwear. His thin white chest was smeared with blood that dribbled down his chin from the object he was chewing on. Eddie reached for Brutus to pull him inside when Brutus yelped. Returning his attention to his dog he saw that Virgil had managed to sink his teeth into Brutus’s flank; yanking his head back he tore away a chunk of flesh to expose the dog’s ribs beneath.

Brutus yelped again and raced across the yard to escape Virgil, who slowly rolled over and pushed himself up with his remaining arm. Quietly Eddie stepped back into the house and locked the door.

Brutus barked again, the sound high-pitched, and Eddie struggled with his emotions as he rested his back against the door and slowly dropped to the floor. He was stunned by what he’d seen. It was like he’d just walked into a nightmare in progress.

It wasn’t really happening. Eddie tried to convince himself as Virgil slapped at the window above his head, reminding him that what he’d seen was real.

Then he remembered his phone. Pushing himself up, he returned to his office where he retrieved the phone. He had one voicemail from his wife, and guilt flashed through him over the fact that she had caught him in a lie. He’d told her he was going to work on his resume this morning while she had insisted that he would probably go back to bed like he always did. This time he’d been serious about getting his resume done but a restless night filled with worry over how he was going to make the house payment pretty much put the idea of sleep to rest.

He dialed his voicemail number and waited for the prompts. Soon his wife’s voice was coming through the handset, filled with a fear he could almost taste.

“I don’t know what’s going on. There are people all over the place. They won’t let me through. Oh my God,” she moaned before the message clicked off.

He was a simple man. Not given to flights of fancy or wild imaginings. A man who knew how to work with his hands. He understood the concrete concepts of cabinetry and joinery, so that which had turned his world upside down lay outside the realm of his understanding. To him the world beyond the walls of his wood shop was a mystery.

The failing economy had robbed him of his dignity. When he’d been laid off from the cabinet manufacturer south of town, he’d assumed it would be a temporary set back. After all, he was skilled with his hands and was one of the most dependable people out there. In his twenty-year career as the plant he’d only ever missed one day. That being the day his only daughter was born. Eighteen months later he was still unemployed.

They took his truck once the unemployment checks stopped coming in and he could no longer afford the payments. There were several judgments against him, and they stood a good chance of losing the house unless something happened, soon.

His phone rang and he glanced at the small screen. It was his wife and he quickly punched the button to accept her call.

“Rachel, where are you? Are you all right?” he said. His only response was a soft moaning sound and a measured scraping that was familiar, yet alien in its obscurity.

“Rachel, is that you?” His voice rose several octaves as fear squeezed his guts in an icy grip.

To be continued!

Part Two

Till Death Do We Part is just one of the stories in my collection 9 Dark Tales.

Also available from these other fine online retailers.




Monday Motivational

Monday kind of snuck up on me this week. I've been more than a little busy with work and writing so I leave you with this.

Fridays 5 wth Tanya Lisle

Tanya Lisle is a novelist from Vancouver, British Columbia. Publishing several novels annually, she writes in a variety of genres from young adult urban fantasy to post-apocalyptic science fiction and is currently working on several series. When she isn't writing, she is either working as a web developer or working on a variety of game projects.

1.) When did you first get serious about writing?

It was back in high school. A friend of mine asked me to write a backstory for a character she was working on for a comic and she liked it. It was so much fun that I just kept going with it after that and I haven't stopped.

2.) What is the hardest part for you about writing?

Editing. Drafts are fun until you have to start fixing them and you realize just how much doesn't make any sense the second time around. It's also when my editor delights in pointing out just how often I spell the same few words wrong or miss punctuation.

Click on the cover for more info or to order!

Synopsis: After losing three of Adrianna's brothers, Alice takes it upon herself to scour Wonderland to find them over the summer. She never thought it would be this difficult to find three boys who so obviously didn't belong there, but they continue to elude her search for them.

There's a new group of people in the plains that are most definitely not from Wonderland. Alice encounters Tiger Lily, a young woman determined to do whatever she needs to help her people as they escape the horrors of their homelands. Though Alice is hesitant to stop looking for Adrianna's brothers, Tiger Lily proves to be very persuasive and will have Alice's help whether she is willing or not.

3.) How did you feel upon publication of your first completed project?

I was so nervous after I put the first book up. I hadn't done any marketing and it was such a strange little thing that I had no idea how anyone was going to respond to it. I was worried no one was going to like it, or that they were and they'd have high expectations for the next one. Luckily for me, most people responded pretty well.

4.) What is more important to you, story, or character? Why?

Character is definitely more important. A story is great, but even a fantastic story will fall apart if you aren't invested in the characters involved in it. And an interesting character can also hold up even the blandest and most nonsensical of plots.

5.) What is a typical day like in your world?

I get up, get ready, and go to my day job, where I am for most of the day. I'm not home until the evening, when I make myself something for dinner and take a bit of a break before heading to the computer and starting to work on whatever project I have assigned for the day. Sometimes that's writing, rewriting, or editing the next book. Sometimes it's programming for the game I've been working on. Sometimes it's the other parts of being an author, so writing blogs and updating social media accounts. It all just depends on the night.

Author links:

Website: http://tanyalisle.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TanyaLisle

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ScrapPaperEntertainment

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Tanya-Lisle/e/B00OUKN1JS/

Billie-Bob's Birthday: Part IV

Branches fell to the ground around him and he returned fire, the double ought buckshot finding its mark, doubling the boy over as he dropped to the ground in a tangled heap.

“Help me,” the girl screamed behind him and he swung around expecting to find another attacker in the depression with them. Instead he saw the crown of a baby’s head as it emerged from between her upraised legs.

“Don’t let him fall on the ground,” she shouted as she pawed at the ground with her hands. He was keeping his distance, his finger still sore from being nearly broken by her relentless grip.

Grabbing a towel from his pack he scooted over and gently removed the emerging baby,

“You have to make him cry or he wont breathe on his own.”

“How do I do that?”

“Smack his ass.”


“You heard me, turn him upside down and smack his ass, you’ve got to get the fluid out of his lungs or he won’t survive.”

Pounding footsteps came from behind him and he swiveled around on his hips, drawing his revolver as he did, firing at the boy running towards him. The baby that had been nestled in his arm jumped in response to his gunfire and struggled to take a breath, his mouth opening and closing like a fish out of water. Quickly he suspended the child by his feet and slapped his bloody bottom. Amniotic fluid was ejected from his mouth and he cried in a shrill voice with his eyes screwed tightly shut.

“Give him to me,” she said as she reached for the child.

Todd wrapped the baby in the towel and handed him to his mother as another contraction slammed her onto her back and a second baby’s head emerged.

“There’s another one,” Todd said as the second child emerged much easier than the first. This time he knew what he had to do and quickly had the child wrapped in a t-shirt, as he only had one towel, and suckling at its mothers breast.

“We have to cut the cords, and you have to get the afterbirth out of me,” the girl said and Todd’s stomach performed several lazy somersaults.

“Just tie them off in two places and cut between them,” she said, “after that you should be able to pull the placenta out, but do it gently.”

Todd was sweating as he tied the cords, his hands shaking so bad he was hardly able to tie the knots. Finally he managed to do what he had to and was able to put everything behind him as he turned his attention to the task of getting them out of there. He knew where an old woman lived who’d be able to help the girl heal, but first he had to get rid of those around him.

Gathering up his shotgun and pistol he filled the pockets of his jacket with shells.

“Where are you going?” she said.

“We gotta get out of here, and we can’t do that while they’re still out there.”

“What are you going to do?”

“I’m going to do what I do best, I’m gonna go out there and kill every one of them.”

“What about me?”

“I’ll be back for you.”

“But what if one of them tries to sneak up on me while you’re gone?”

Todd pulled the forty five semi automatic from his pack and after checking to make sure it was loaded passed it to her.

“Safety’s off, all you gotta do is aim and squeeze the trigger, but be careful, it’s got a bit of a kick. When I come back I’ll let you know it’s me so you don’t shoot me.”

With that he turned and vanished into the forest.

He was alone now, unencumbered with the extra weight of someone who didn’t understand the true brutality of the world in which they lived. It was time for what this world had turned him into to emerge and take the fight to them. Hands that had recently helped bring new life into this world, would now be used to reduce the population of those who dared to come after him.

As night slowly descended upon the forest he moved like a wraith through the shadowy depths. The first group he came upon didn’t even know he was there until it was too late. He emerged from the shadows with his guns blazing and three of the attackers met their end, the other two fleeing into the night as he moved on to his next target, and his next, each with the same result.

At last they were alone and he returned to the depression where he helped the young girl to her feet and cradled one sleeping baby as he led her into the forest depths where an old woman would tend to her and ensure the survival of her twin boys. As he looked down at the sleeping child he realized he could really get comfortable being a dad. 

The End

I hope you enjoyed this brief foray into the world inhabited by Billie-Bob and his friends. To read more about their adventures in a post apocalyptic world follow the links below.

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Available at these fine online retailers.


Barnes & Noble



Books A Million


Also available in paperback.

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Read for free with Kindle Unlimited.
Also available in paperback.

My "Aha!" Moment.

Aside from those who claim they were born with a natural desire to write and were penning full length novels before they were even out of diapers, I honestly believe most writers came to the vocation as readers.

When I was young I had a desire to create, but my interests were directed towards music. I started playing  trumpet in grade school, and though I never really mastered the guitar, I could strum a few chords. There was also a period on my life where I thought I could draw.

Don't worry, I'm not gonna share any of my art work here. 

I've been a voracious reader my entire life, starting young about the age of seven, with comics that we now call graphic novels. I lived in a small neighborhood right on the outskirts of Washington, D.C. during the late sixties, early seventies, and quite honestly reading offered me an escape from the daily grind of being one of a handful of white students in a junior high that was predominately black. To say going to school was a tad dangerous would be an understatement. During the riots of the late sixties I can remember being bused to school under armed guard. There will be those who take offense to this statement, let them, I'm just relaying a simple truth from my childhood.

You see books provided me with the escape I needed to stay off the streets, in a sense they helped me survive my pre-teen years.

Many readers have at one time or another in their life toyed with the idea of writing themselves. Some will actually follow up on that thought by taking up the pen. Others will hesitate, not really sure which way to go, or what to do, after all you can't just wake up one day and call yourself a writer, can you? At the time I mistakenly believed that you couldn't. I thought there had to be some governing body, someone to rubber stamp that assertion, to make it official.

What did I know? I was young and dumb.

Fast forward some fifteen odd years and I was a young man of thirty, a veteran of the armed forces where I most likely consumed over a thousand books. While I was serving my country I always had a book handy and every pay day I'd take a trip to the PX to load up on more books. As I had little space for storage I'd usually pass on what I'd read to whoever wanted it. Life in the peace time military consisted of seemingly endless stretches of absolute boredom interspersed with brief periods of absolute boredom. You either slept or you read. Mostly we read.

The defining moment for me, that point when I finished a book and put it down with the thought, I can do better than that came in 1991. Do you remember the Zebra Books horror line? It was one of those. Stories slapped together behind garish covers that usually occupied the back the magazine racks in the local drug store.

It was the aha moment that one of my favorite authors, Stephen King so eloquently expounds upon.

Have you ever experienced an aha moment?

Fridays 5 with Lindsay Marie Miller

Lindsay Marie Miller was born and raised in Tallahassee, FL, where she graduated from high school as Valedictorian. Afterwards, Lindsay attended Florida State University and graduated Summa Cum Laude with an English Literature major, Psychology minor, and Specialized Studies in Markets and Institutions. Lindsay is the author of the romance novels: Jungle Eyes, Me & Mr. Jones, and Emerald Green. Jungle Eyes is the beginning of a new romantic action/adventure trilogy. Emerald Green is the first installment in a four-part series of Young Adult romantic thrillers. And the New Adult romantic thriller, Me & Mr. Jones, will be accompanied by a sequel. In her free time, Lindsay enjoys singing, playing the piano and guitar, and writing songs. The author resides in her hometown of Tallahassee, FL, where she is currently working on her next novel.

1.) When did you first get serious about writing?

A.) When I was sixteen years old, still a junior in high school. The Twilight Saga had a very profound effect on me. And after reading the books and watching the first film a few times, I had the sudden urge to write. I wanted to write fiction, and I wanted to write young adult romance. The result was my first novel, Emerald Green. Even now, I don't really know why the overwhelming urge to make up stories came over me. But I am so grateful that it did.

2.) What is the hardest part for you about writing?

A.) Sometimes, you want to get the story out faster than you can write the words. Every day, I have the plot of the current novel I am writing spinning around in my head. I don't want to forget where I left off, or the words I haven't written yet. But as you continue to write, the story will evolve, and maybe even lead you down a road that you never thought was intended for your characters. At the end of the day, I am no more than a messenger. Because the characters tell me their stories, and I have no control over what happens to them. I am simply here to write it down so no one forgets what has already happened.

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Synopsis: In the spring of 1899, Henry Rochester boards a ship on the docks of New York Harbor and sets sail across the Atlantic. Desperately seeking freedom and adventure, Henry fails to anticipate the violent ocean storm that will destroy the ship, murder his fellow comrades, and leave him stranded on a deserted island.

However, Henry is not alone in paradise, as a beautiful young woman, named Elaine, acquaints him with the enchanting, yet evil nature of the jungle. As the two quarrel, reconcile, and bond, love blossoms between them like an exotic wildflower. But when the tide turns, bringing an inescapable wave of danger with it, Henry and Elaine must face the callous brutality of the uninvited.

3.) How did you feel upon publication of your first completed project?

A.) I was stunned, relieved, and terrified. For so long, it felt like Emerald Green was never going to get out there. But when it was finally published, I became more comfortable with what I was doing. Now, I have grown to love the process and nearly every step involved. The first release is always the scariest, but it's proven to be extremely beneficial for every novel that has been released since.

4.) What is more important to you, story, or character? Why?

A.) Character. I feel deeply connected to the voices in my head, because I know them as well as I know myself. They are like old friends in town for the weekend, who you haven't seen in such a long time and will miss as soon as they are gone. Without the characters, there is no story, because the entire narrative revolves around their thoughts and emotions, for me. Since I write strictly romance, the two main characters who are falling in love are the whole heart of the story. They are the crux, what everything else is built around.

5.) What is a typical day like in your world?

A.)  Lots of time at the computer. I am always connecting with bloggers, reviewers, and other indie authors. I really enjoy the networking aspect and the fact that I am able to communicate with other readers and writers online. The rest of my day is writing, writing, writing. I tend to write on paper with a pen in my hand and then type up the words later. The day is usually split between those two tasks, but I really enjoy all aspects of being an indie author. This is what I've always wanted to do, and I feel so fortunate that I am finally able to do it.

Author Links:

Website: http://lindsaymariemillerauthor.com/

Mailing list: http://eepurl.com/b9fRJ1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Lindsay_MMiller

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LindsayMarieMillerAuthor

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/LindsayMarieMiller

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/lindsaymariemiller

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/LindsayMarieMiller

Billie-Bob's Birthday: Part III

From his pack he removed a 12 gauge shotgun loaded with double ought buckshot, powerful enough the cut a man in half. They were in a slight depression in the ground and from the East came the sound of the boys racing towards them. Firing on the run the boys had Todd and the woman pinned down, but he had a little surprise for them.

Bullets zinged through the air above them, some slamming into the dead tree limbs that formed a dead fall on the right side of the depression.

The girl began screaming next to him and he quickly checked her, believing she had been hit by a stray round. Finding no blood he could only assume the was having the baby. He hadn’t been hired to deliver a baby, in fact he didn’t know how to, before the apocalypse he’d been a hardware clerk more concerned with the customers and their orders of screws and nails and such.

There had been one time a pregnant woman nearly gave birth in the store, but they had called nine, one, one, and the paramedics had arrived to take the woman to the hospital. It was as close as he’d ever come, or even wanted to come to a woman giving birth. Now he was pinned down in the forest with a pregnant woman beside him about to have a baby, while the forest around them was filled with people trying to kill them.

The first of the attackers appeared over the lip of the depression they hid in, a young boy, no more than twelve, who lifted his rifle for what he thought was an easy shot. The roar of the shotgun caused a pause in the firing as the young boys face was obliterated by the wad of double ought buckshot that took his head clean off. He dropped to the ground without firing a shot, dying before he even knew he was dead.

The woman continued to scream as Todd crawled over to her.

“Is there anything I can do to help?”

She stopped screaming, replacing the vocalization of her pain with a hard panting in an effort to control the process, sweat covered her face, and she looked at him with a wild expression. “You could make them stop shooting,” she said between deep breaths.

“Sure,” he chuckled, “I’ll just pop up and ask everyone to be quiet for a moment while you give birth.” He said as a fusillade of rounds slammed into the deadfall. He heard running feet coming in his direction and got ready.

There were two this time, one to his left, the other on his right. The one on the right came into view and Todd took a shot, the spreading buckshot hitting the older man in the hip, and spinning him around as he fell to the forest floor where he lay screaming in pain.

The one on the left managed to make it all the way into the depression, his revolver aimed out in front of him as he jumped into the hole with a shout of triumph. The woman kicked him in the knee, sending him sprawling as his shot went wild, vanishing into the trees with a splatter of sound. He scrabbled backwards on his hands and feet in a crabwalk as Todd brought up his shotgun. He let the boy reach the lip of the depression, believing he was about to get away, before he caressed the trigger and sent him sprawling through the forest.

What had begun as a wild chase through the forest settled into a drawn out stalemate as each side considered their options. The man on the right continued to scream for another twenty minutes before his cries dwindled to a whimpering moan that quickly became silence as death took him.

“You have to help me, I can’t do this alone,” the girl said grabbing Todd’s sleeve.

“Me, I’ve never delivered a baby before, I don’t know what to do.”

“You won’t have to do much, wrap the baby in a towel, tie off and cut the cord, I’ll do the rest.”

“I can’t.”

“You have to, I can’t hold off any longer, the baby’s coming,” and with that she squirmed out of her pants and panties. “Do you have rubbing alcohol?”


“Use it to sterilize your knife, we’ll also need some sterile string to tie off the cord.”

“I can soak some in alcohol.”

“That’ll work. You will also need to help me remove the placenta.”

“The what?”

“The afterbirth, you know what the afterbirth is don’t you?”

“No, I told you, I’ve never done this before.”

“Well there’s always a first time. Do you have any bandages? I’ll need to stop the bleeding.”

“What bleeding?”

She squeezed her eyes shut, lifting her head as her grip tightened on his hand, very nearly breaking his finger. Then she relaxed with a deep breath.

“He’s coming,” she said as she pulled her legs up and spread them. Todd glanced down and looked away, embarrassed, it was nothing like the magazines he once read.

The sound of running feet came from his left and he swiveled around just as another young boy emerged from the forest, running towards them with a shotgun spitting flames. A spreading wad of BB’s, like a cloud of angry bees, slammed burrowed through the limbs over his head.

To Be Continued!

I hope you enjoyed this brief foray into the world inhabited by Billie-Bob and his friends. To read more about their adventures in a post apocalyptic world follow the links below.

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When she was ten she made a promise to that which inhabits the winter storm.

Now she's twenty six and pregnant, and the White Walker has come to claim his due.

A Newbie Mistake Many Have Made!

You've spent weeks, months, maybe even years writing that first book. Maybe you've had it edited, or tried to do it yourself. The cover was paid for, or again you did it yourself.

After all that's what indie means doesn't it?

Now you hold your book in your hand, the physical manifestation of a dream you've always had. But how do you get people to notice it. More importantly, how do you convince them that you, as a new author, are worth spending money on.

Every one of us wants to be heard, we all want that small spot on center stage, we dream of living the life of a bestselling writer.

Like most new authors we failed to take that one important step while we were writing our masterpiece, we forgot to make friends. Now in a mad scramble to make up for our failure we send out friend requests on all of the major social networks.

We follow up on acceptances with a direct message calling on our new found friend to check out our first book. If we're lucky someone with more experience in these matters will point out the error of our ways. If we're smart we listen to what they have to say, otherwise we continue to follow a path that will lead only to failure.

Sound familiar?

Over the weekend a new writer sent out a slew of friend requests on Facebook, immediately following up on acceptances with a message to their new friend to check out their first book. This of course is nothing new, many of the friend requests I receive on the platforms I use are followed up with a direct message to check out their website, newest book, or Amazon Author Page.

Just so you know, I usually ignore these. Before I became a writer I was a reader and I have developed  my own way of finding my next read.

Long story short I came upon a post this morning about the writer in question, and to be honest I was ashamed at the way these writers were bashing this new author. But heartened as well when I saw one writer come to the new writer's defense. Instead of hopping on the bandwagon to complain they  reached out to the writer in question and explained to them the mistake they had made.

I'm not going to name names but many of those complaining are writers I had a great deal of respect for. I say had because I don't anymore after the childish display of one up manship I witnessed. It seems some among us have forgotten that we were all newbies once, and at one point in our budding careers a more experienced hand had offered not only their friendship, but a bit of advice.

Fridys 5 with L.G. Corey

L.G. Corey lives and writes in a small mountain community, seven thousand feet above sea level in the San Bernardino Mountains of Southern California. His is the author of four books of poetry, all published or about to be published by Platypus Press, Ltd. (England). The Kalidas Verses, Sausalito Poems, Rats’ Alley Poems, and Shards of Glass, an anthology of his collected works compiled by the editors of Platypus Press.

His individual poems regularly appear in print and online literary magazines here and abroad such as Unlost: A Found Poetry Review, Dead Snakes, Corvus Review, The Literary Commune, Danse Macabre (France), Kalyna Review (the Ukraine), Hot Tub Astronaut (Scotland), California Journal of Poetics, Red Savina Review, Chaffey Review, Poetry Pacific, Empty Sink, Snapping Twig, FUG.UES, Rogue Poetry Review, Miller’s Pond, Screech Owl, Pif: A Journal of Art & Technology, Beloit Poetry Journal, Evergreen Review, Midstream, Choice, the Critic, and Zeek, among others both here and abroad.

In addition, his work has been selected for inclusion in three annual poetry anthologies: RoguePoetry Review (2015); FUG.UES: An Anthology of Minimalist Poetry, Haiku, and Asemic Writing; and the Snapping Twig Year-End Anthology.

1.) When did you first get serious about writing?

A.) I first realized that someone actually writes a poem, and it doesn’t just appear by itself in a book, when I was ten years old. Our teacher had pinned a little handwritten poem by one of my classmates to the bulletin board in our classroom. I stopped and stared at it for a long time. It was the first time I had ever seen such a thing, and it seemed to me magical. “I can do that,” I finally said to myself, and did.

Four years later, in a high-school English class, someone passed around a paper with a passage from Lewis Carol’s The Jabberwocky on one side of the page and a quote from T.S. Eliot’s Wasteland on the other. Until that point, I had no idea who Eliot was or what he had written, but that short mocking quote dazzled me and I realized that that was the kind of poetry I wanted to write someday.

At the end of that virtual apprenticeship, when I was 18 years old and a freshman in college, I began submitting my poems to prominent literary journals. Of course, they were all returned with the standard printed rejection slip. One of them, however, from the great Poetry magazine, had a handwritten note in pencil at the bottom.  It read, “Keep trying.” I did. But to this day, with all my other publications, I’ve never been accepted by Poetry magazine. No matter. I cherish the memory of that handwritten note.  

2.) What is the hardest part for you about writing?

A.) For the first 60 or 70 years of my career as a poet (I started in earnest when I was 20, and I’m now 81) my greatest fear was always that I would never write another poem as good as my last one – if at all. No matter how many poems I subsequently wrote that proved me wrong, the fear never went away. Finally, though, when I was 60 or 70, it did. I now sit down to write each poem with the assurance from my Muse that she, not I, will surely write another.

These poems grew out of the years spent on the streets, in the bars, squatting in derelict houseboats, and getting high with friends and lovers in Sausalito.

3.) How did you feel upon publication of your first completed project?

A.) Major literary journals finally began publishing my work in the 1960s, beginning with the esteemed Beloit Poetry Journal publishing my poem, Shema!, in their winter 1966-1967 issue, followed a year later by my poem, Baal Shem, In their spring, 1969 issue. My reaction, of course, was joy. I had finally started becoming the kind of serious, literary poet I had determined to be when I first read T.S. Eliot, fifteen years earlier. Publication of my work in other important literary magazines, such as Evergreen Review and Midstream, followed.

4.) What is more important to you, story, or character? Why?

A.) As a poet, the most important thing to me is the architecture of the poetic space – even more important than the “meaning,” “message,” or “affect” of a poem. I compare this to the beauty of a spider web: It conveys no inherent meaning or message, but only the architecture of its created space. The same is true of a sunrise or sunset. Neither has any intrinsic meaning other than that itself. The poem, too, is much like that – for me, at least. My goal each time is to let the poem write itself, not for my sake or the reader’s sake, but for its sake.

5.) What is a typical day like in your world?

A.) For as long as I can remember my day begins at 3:30 a.m. First I tend to my two pit bulls, black lab, and three elderly cats. Then, fortified with a cup of strong coffee and a croissant, I sit at my computer either working on a new poem or reworking an old one. Then, as I’ve been doing every morning for over the past 25 years, I teach my online classes on spirituality and creativity. At noon I take a lunch of ramen noodles and fresh fruit, and lay down for about an hour. When I rise I manage my correspondence, communicate with my publisher, Platypus Press, Ltd. (England), about whatever book of mine they’re preparing for publication, and even watch an hour or two of classic animated cartoons on television. My day ends around 5 p.m. when I, my three dogs and three cats, all get into bed together where I eat a light dinner (usually a sandwich, fresh fruit and canned soda) and watch the local news until we fall asleep at 7 p.m., only to wake up again to a new day, 8 ½ hours later.

Website: https://poetcorey.wordpress.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/poetcorey

Book: http://getbook.at/sausalitopoems

Billie-Bob's Birthday Part II

The boy spun around and leveled his weapon at Todd who had been caught unarmed, his pistol still resting in its holster.

“Who the fuck are you?” the boy said, the massive muzzle of the gun wavered slightly as he started to squeeze the trigger. He fired, the muzzle blossoming flame in slow motion as the roar of the shot washed over Todd and his eardrums were flattened by the concussion. The round went wide, passing harmlessly through the air to the right of Todd’s head.

The boy was pulling back the hammer for another shot when his eyes widened with surprised shock and the hand holding the gun fell lifelessly to his side.

“Gaahhhh,” the boy said as he reached up with his free hand towards the back of his head. He dropped to his knees revealing the girl Todd had been tasked with protecting as she stood over the boy, her face twisted into a mask of savage anger, her hand wrapped around the handle of the hammer growing from the back of the boys head, the claws buried deep in his brain.

She wrenched the hammer free as Todd rubbed his ears in a failed attempt to restore his hearing. She screamed silently as she raised the hammer over her head and brought it down savagely onto the boys head. He dropped to his knees in front of Todd, the gun still held in one hand, resting lifelessly against the ground, forgotten. The boy looked at him with a questioning expression as the light of life faded from his eyes and he fell face first to the ground at Todd’s feet.

He didn’t know where she got the hammer, and quite honestly didn’t really care, she’d saved his ass and given the boy exactly what he deserved.

Blood sprayed against the rusted hulk of the tractor beside them, glistening in the sunlight as she pummeled the boy’s body with the hammer in a frenzied attack fueled by terror and rage.

More attuned to the need to survive, even though he couldn’t yet hear, Todd knew the others would be coming soon and they needed to be out of there when they did. He reached for the girl and she slashed savagely at his hand with the hammer. He jerked his hand back and pulled his own pistol, leveling the muzzle in the direction the others were coming.

Her eyes went wide with terror as she fell back, only becoming aware of the direction Todd was aiming when she dropped to her knees at the boys lifeless feet. She glanced back over her shoulder as Todd fired and the first of the approaching attackers dropped to the ground in a tangled heap. He fired again as another appeared, the round catching the boy in the shoulder and spinning him around as blood splattered across the dusty ground.

Through it all the only thing Todd could hear was that persistent ringing in his ears that cast the whole scene in an eerie light. He felt more than heard the sound of a round ricocheting from the rusted hunk of the tractor beside him and he hunkered down behind its bulk as he returned fire. 

The girl crawled around behind the tractor with him and he glanced in her direction as he kept a watch over the edge of the tractor. He knew if they were smart the attackers would be trying to flank him soon and with that in mind he swiveled his head left and right, searching for new threats he felt sure were even then sneaking up on them.

“We have to get out of here,” he said to the girl who looked up at him with fear and anger battling for control of her emotions. Another round ricocheted from the tractor and this time he heard a faint whickering sound as the round spun harmlessly by them. His hearing was coming back, slowly.

She cried out in pain, the sound of her voice coming to Todd as a faint whisper within a static filled hiss that had replaced the ringing in his ears. He glanced over to find her doubled over her swollen belly with her arms wrapped around her middle. A wet stain covered the fabric of the front of her pants and he realized she was having the baby, right there, in the middle of a gun fight.

“No,“ he shouted, “not here!”

She cried out in response as she cradled herself with her arms, curling up into a fetal position on the ground behind the tractor.

He gabbed her arm and pulled her up to a sitting position. “If we stay here, we die, and that includes your baby,” Todd shouted at her and she nodded in understanding, pain etched across her features.

Another round slammed into the bulk of the tractor, followed by a fusillade that pelted the old steel protecting them. Todd knew they would be moving during the gunfire and he peaked around the side of the tractor, catching sight of two boys running towards the tree line that would provide cover as they moved to flank them. He glanced back the way he had come, inside the tree line was his gear, if he could reach that they would have a better chance of surviving.

“We have to get to the trees,” he shouted, his voice coming to him as if from a great distance away.

She nodded in understanding and Todd pushed himself to his feet, his hand latched onto hers, if she fell he was gonna drag her ass all the way to the trees.

“Now,” he shouted and they took off, running bent over across the overgrown field, every step brining them another step closer to the tree line. Bullets whipped by through the air around them, some slammed into the ground at their feet, sending small geysers of dirt into the air upon impact.

They reached the tree line just as another group of boys emerged to their left and Todd went to ground, diving for his pack as they fired at them.

To be continued!

Follow Billie-Bobs adventures as he explores a post apocalyptic world with his three friends. 

Click on the cover for more info or to order!

Available exclusively at Amazon 
Read for free with Kindle Unlimited

Click on the cover for more info or to order!

Available exclusively at Amazon 
Read for free with Kindle Unlimited

Don't forget to sign up to be updated and notified of my new releases when they become available. 
I promise not to share your email address with anyone else, and will only send you an email for important updates and new releases as they become available. I'll even throw in a free copy of my book White Walker just for signing up.

When she was ten she made a promise to that which inhabits the winter storm.

Now she's twenty six and pregnant, and the White Walker has come to claim his due.

Mondays Motivational: 5 Things Writers Can Do to Stay Focused.

We've all experienced it at least once in our writing life, sometimes more, that brilliant idea that just seemed to flow onto the page suddenly dries up. The story dies and we're left beating our heads against the keyboard as we struggle to recapture that earlier joy. Of course we do the worse thing we  can in such a situation, we begin forcing the story in an effort to recapture the excitement we once felt, which of course makes it even harder to continue at our earlier pace. It then becomes a viscous cycle as we battle the invisible demon that has stolen our joy.

I've found the following five activities have helped me tremendously when faced with an idea that has suddenly lost its spark, but everyone is different, so what has worked for me in the past, may not work for you.

First and foremost carefully step away from the keyboard.

Listen to Music: There are those among us who can only write when the music is blaring around them. That's not me, I have to have near silence so I can hear myself think. So naturally when an idea stops speaking to me I'll slip on the head phones and crank it all the way up as I listen to one of my favorite bands. I'm a heavy metal fan, and I'm married, so I've found headphones a good way to keep the peace. Besides the music envelopes me when I'm wearing headphones, it flows through me and helps me get my mind off the problem at hand. Which of course is what you want to do.

Write in Longhand: I'll break out a notebook and just start doodling with words. To take a break from the direction the story is going maybe I'll work on a character's background, digging around in the skeletons they're hiding in their closet, you never know what might pop up to jump start the story and get your creative juices flowing again.

Take a Walk: If the music fails me I'll grab the dog and go for a walk, and while we're walking I'll talk to my dog about the problem I'm having with my writing. It's amazing what a change of scenery can do for the psyche.

Meditate: I'll get away from the keyboard and sit on the couch with my eyes closed as I clear my mind, something that's not really all that hard for me to do. Many times my subconscious with give me the clue I've been looking for.

Laugh: Go to Youtube and search for the funniest videos you can find and take a moment to just laugh. it's amazing what a good laugh can do for your productivity.

Now it's your turn. What do you do when inspiration dries up?