©2020 CBialczak Miniatures on Stine Writing
A lovely contribution to Simply 6! Thank you Lauren for participating!
I never had many friends growing up. I was never in the “popular” group. I was often a loner, the oddball. I was an outsider for a multitude of reasons. I was the lone Jewish kid who did not ever know enough about my own religion. I had a multitude of step-fathers in and out of the house. I was a skinny bean pole. We had very little money and I never had the right clothes or shoes.
I typically had one friend that knew most of what went on in my house. Being a loner meant I didn’t have to explain things. In high school I had two amazing friends who cared about me and I cared about them. One had tickets to concerts and Lakers games. She always took me with her and my world expanded exponentially. The other went a…
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Another great contribution to Simply 6! Thanks John for participating!.
Think of your best friend from grammar school, and ask yourself, “if I was in a jam, could I get on the phone and call that person to help?”
My guess is that better than half of you wouldn’t be able to. You might not even remember who your best friend in grammar school was, let alone how to get in touch with them. You might find some of your old classmates on Facebook, but if you remember them, will they remember you?
My mother was different. She met her best friend when she was ten, and they remained friends until Mom died. She showed me a picture from her 40th high school reunion and could recite the names of all the women. But they were acquaintances, except for her best friend. Still, she remembered everyone in that picture.
Mary (my wife) talks about seasons in friendships. You’re together…
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We’re celebrating the release of Vicky Adin’s latest historical fiction, Portrait of a Man! Read on for an exclusive excerpt and a chance to win a print copy of the book!
Portrait of a Man
Publication Date: October 23rd, 2020
Genre: Historical Fiction
Matteo Borgoni is a desperate man. He must succeed if he is to free his beloved wife, held captive by her father in Melbourne. His picture framing skills establish him with the artists of Dunedin in 1863, but he has many doubts, and many more obstacles to overcome.
Fifty years on, Luciano, a rakish Italian portrait artist on the run from his past, turns up at the Invercargill branch of Borgoni Picture Framers seeking refuge. As the ravages of World War One escalate, fear is constant, but compassion brings unexpected consequences. A terrifying pandemic is the last thing they need.
Over a century later, a man recognises a portrait in an Auckland gallery, and demands it back. Amid another global pandemic, a marriage on the brink of failure, and a life and death struggle, the portrait exposes generations of family secrets and deceptions with life-changing results.
About the Author
Award winning historical fiction author, Vicky Adin is a genealogist in love with history and words.
After decades of research Vicky has combined her skills to write poignant novels that weave family and history together in a way that makes the past come alive.
Fascinated by the 19th Century women who undertook hazardous journeys to find a better life, Vicky draws her characters from real life stories – characters such as Brigid The Girl from County Clare and Gwenna The Welsh Confectioner, or Megan who discovers much about herself when she traces her family tree in The Cornish Knot.
Her 2019 release, The Costumier’s Gift, is the dual-timeline sequel to the family sagas of Brigid The Girl from County Clare and Gwenna The Welsh Confectioner.
In 2020, Vicky released Portrait of a Man, the soul-searching and heart-warming conclusion to The Cornish Knot.
Vicky Adin holds a MA(Hons) in English and Education. When not writing you will find her reading – she is an avid reader of historical novels, family sagas and contemporary women’s stories; travelling – especially caravanning, and cruising with her husband and biggest fan; and spending time with her family.
Social Media Links
Giveaway: Print copy of book (International)
Blog Tour Organized By:
R&R Book Tours
This is the third book in the Patience of A Dead Man series! They all rock!
Welcome to the final book tour for The Patience of a Deadman trilogy, by Michael Clark. Anger is Acid is the bone-chilling conclusion, and today I have an excerpt for you and a giveaway to enter!
Anger is An Acid (The Patience of a Dead Man #3)
Publication Date: May 4, 2020
Genre: Horror/ Ghost Story
Mildred has control… Tim and Holly, realizing they are helpless, are grateful when a stranger knocks on their door – but can he help? Andrew Vaughn, a haunted man, is on-scene, hoping to lend a hand – against his will. Meanwhile, the “ghost story” is becoming national news and attracting attention that Tim can’t afford.
Holly can’t stay in the house anymore and draws a line. Confidence is low, and pressure builds. Meanwhile, Mildred listens to almost everything they say. Is there any way around her anger? Or will they die in vain, as they desperately search for Tim’s daughters?
With the doors locked, Tim and Holly exchanged concerns.
“Yes, I know it was her. I’m sure she has the girls too. You don’t have to tell me, Holly. I’m scared shitless. They could be…” He couldn’t bring himself to finish the sentence.
“Well, we can’t think that way yet. She left Sheila’s body behind. She would have left theirs too. I think they’re alive.” Holly had other fears, but she didn’t finish her thoughts out loud.
“How the hell did she know where they live? Amesbury is seventy miles from here!” Holly felt a chill climb her back as he finished his sentence.
“She seems to come and go from this house as she pleases, Tim. She knows this place as well as if not better than we do. I’ve told you a hundred times–I hate staying here! Please, let’s go to my place. Even if she knows where I live, I’ll feel a little better. At least I don’t think she’s ever been there, but this place…she could be anywhere. I don’t even want to think about it.”
“I can’t leave, Holly. As backward as it may sound, I need to see her. I’m afraid I’ll never see her again! Imagine that? And don’t forget that Thomas Pike had no problem finding your place when he dropped off the Simmons scrapbook. Remember?” Holly nodded, unhappy that Tim had a point.
“Oh, you’ll see her again, Tim. You can bet on that. At least once anyway. It won’t be a sneak attack either. She wants you to know she’s coming and probably wants you to die long and slow. She wants revenge. That’s what revenants do, remember? We just never thought that she’d go for the girls. And that–changes everything.” Holly’s sigh was heavy with dread as she stared blankly at the wall, defeated. There was an unintentional moment of silence.
“How the hell does she get in here?” Tim finally wondered aloud, rousing them both from their separate thoughts. “Does she have a fucking key or something? Secret entrance? The roof?”
“The turret. It’s got to be the turret.” Holly suddenly seemed extra awake and even afraid. She subconsciously looked up at the ceiling where the turret would be. The stairway to it was only two rooms away. They both rose to investigate, flicking the dining room light on along the way. Tim listened outside the door for a moment, then fetched his baseball bat from the kitchen before opening it.
They climbed the stairs slowly. Holly was relieved to find the turret was empty, but it left Tim with a lack of answers and a growing level of frustration. Mildred had decided to let them worry and wonder about the girls for at least an evening–the very first evening of their captivity. Was it by design, meant to heighten the anguish? Or was she busy looking for a place to hole them up?
The girls were trapped with the dead woman and most likely terrified. Tim wished he could trade places with them–they were too young for such terror. Tim rested the bat against the wall and tried the windows. There were eight of them ringing the octagonal room, and much to Tim’s surprise, one of them was unlocked.
“What the hell! I locked these– I’m sure I locked them.”
“Yes, but you don’t check them every night, Tim. All she had to do is get in here once during the day to get up here and unlock it. And look, your papers are all sitting right there.” Holly motioned to Tim’s box in the corner. “That’s how she knew where Sheila lived. Now we know–and it creeps me out—I can’t tell you how much.” Tim saw where the conversation was headed and changed the subject.
“I need to boobytrap this place. Get her right here in this room, and then set a trap, like a bear trap or…”
“You don’t think she’ll see a bear trap in the middle of the floor? That’s just going to piss her off, Tim. And you’re liable to hurt yourself with the damn thing. Same with knives or fire or whatever else you’re thinking.” Holly’s stress did all the talking.
“I wasn’t thinking about knives or fire, come on, give me a little bit of credit.” Tim lied about the knives. “I was thinking something along the lines of a warning system. Something to make her fall down the stairs. A bag of marbles—I don’t fucking know…” Holly giggled, then the giggle turned into laughter. Tim saw that she genuinely thought it was funny and was not making fun of him, so he joined in for a moment–yet the gravity of their problem hung in the room like a cloud of poison dust.
“How about a simple tripwire with a little bell on it?” Holly offered. “One at the bottom of the turret stairs, one in front of the sliding glass door in the breakfast area and one at the bottom of the bedroom stairs? We set it up every night. In the morning, unhook it, so we’re not tripping over it ourselves.” Tim looked up at her.
“That’s an idea. Better than we have now. And like you said—‘we’re gonna see her again.’ We have to. Oh God, I hope and pray she’s greedy and wants to see me again. But–” Tim got quiet and put his balled fist under his nose. Holly saw he was getting emotional.
“Honey, we’re doing all we can, let’s just–”
“But if she’s already done—if this is her revenge—and she’s never coming back, then she’s really good at it.” Tim’s last three words were nearly inaudible as he choked up, worried sick about his daughters. Holly hugged him, trying to hold back tears of her own.
About the Author
Michael Clark was raised in New Hampshire and lived in the house The Patience of a Dead Man is based. The bats really circled the rafters of the barn all day long, and there really was a grove hidden in the forest. He now lives in Massachusetts with his wife Josi and his dog Bubba.
The Patience of a Dead Man, Dead Woman Scorned & Anger is an Acid are his first three novels.
“FEAR minus DEATH equals FUN.”
I didn’t write that. I saw it on Disney+, in fact, on a show called “The Imagineering Story.” It’s a documentary about how Walt Disney and his employees designed the Disney parks, including the thrill rides. “FEAR minus DEATH equals FUN” was their approach to creating many of the rides, including roller coasters like Space Mountain.
My name is Michael Clark, and I subscribe to that theory. I love a good ghost story as long as it’s not gratuitously morbid–I want to feel the hair rise on the back of my neck. Do horror stories scare you away? I don’t want to do that. I want to give you a thrill like the adrenalin rush of a good roller coaster—don’t worry, when it’s over, you’ll be safe and sound.
I like eerie, and I like chilling. I love ghosts as opposed to monsters or demons. Do bad things happen in my books? Sure, but no more than you might read in a crime novel, and it’s never for the sake of vulgarity. Did you like the movie The Sixth Sense, or maybe Silence of the Lambs? That’s what I’m going for—a top-notch thriller that could stand with these great stories. Did I achieve my goal? That’s for you to decide. Just know that you’re not getting a slasher or teen horror, you’re getting psychological horror wrapped into a ghost story-mystery with a twist or two. Thanks for your time!
Twitter Tags: @mikeclarkbooks @rrbooktours1 #Paranormal #Horror #Books
Instagram Tags: @michaelclarkbooks @shannon_rrbooktours #AngerisAcid #RRBookTours #Paranormal #HorrorBooks (Plus usual tags)
Giveaway: Print copies of the entire trilogy (US Only), or a print copy of The Patience of a Dead Man (International)
Blog Tour Organized By:
R&R Book Tours (Link: http://rrbooktours.com)
With the exception of blogging (assuming it’s a hobby and not your profession), do you have any unique hobbies or pastimes?
I have quite a few pastimes/hobbies:
2. Journal binding
4. making miniatues
To participate click here: https://fivedotoh.com/2020/12/01/fowc-with-fandango-comfort/
Creating a place for you
Opening my heart
Making you matter
Feeling the pain
Offering my shoulder to cry on
Respite from the hurt
Together you will survive
©2020 CBialczak Poetry
To participate click here: https://mindlovemiserysmenagerie.wordpress.com/2020/12/01/photo-challenge-343/
Two Worlds Apart
We are two worlds apart
but live so close
sharing the same space
desiring different things
wishing to be accompanied
but thoughtfully alone.
Now I sit
thinking of you
broke us apart.
©2020 CBialczak Poetry
Dr. Tanya at Simply Caramel is hosting: https://saltedcaramel670.wordpress.com/2020/12/01/5-exotic-fruits-you-love/
I am not sure what is considered “exotic” per say but these are five of the less popular fruits I love…
- Kiwi – skin and all! The skin has all the fiber. If you use a potato brush to wash it off it takes off some of the fuzz that isn’t well attached. I will also eat them without the skin!
2. Star fruit – I was first introduced to star fruit while visiting Sanibel Island, Florida. The condo we were staying at had a star fruit tree right outside the front door. There was a picker to get them down, sort of like a basket that catches them. This was also one of the fruits that I used to bring for my students to try since it is a neat food.
3. Longan – These fruits are sort of like grapes with a giant pit. I first tried them at a flea market in Florida. Many of the vendors had them and you could sometimes haggle the price if you went to enough stands. The only problem with them is that they tend to carry these tiny little gnat type bugs so if you bring them home and don’t wash them there are these tiny bugs crawling around. It isn’t a big deal because you just wash them off. Also, you don’t eat the outside. Another issue I have with them is that if you get them too ripe, they get awfully mushy and don’t taste very good. Also at the flea market they have different “quality” Longans, some very expensive.
4. Dragon Fruit – This is a fruit that I really have to be in the mood for. My son used to love them. There are two varieties that I know of; one has a white center and one is pink. I also found these at the flea market. It is almost like it is full of tiny seeds.
5. Rambutan – This is also found in the flea markets and at the Asian markets. Again, I have to be in the mood.
Thank you Sound Mind Journey for your contribution to Simply 6!
“Immersing oneself in the problems of a book is a good way to keep from thinking of love.”― Orhan Pamuk, Snow. Love is the last thing on his mind when he flies solo, in this military plane on this emergency assignment. He has to leave in a hurry without saying goodbye to her and he doesn’t know where she is right now, whether safely home or lost somewhere in this chaos time. He has scribbled a note and stuck it on her door saying a prayer that she will find her way home and read his note and know that he has not abandoned her. The last thing he wants to think of now is the love that never materialized between the two of them. They just do not have the time to develop anything except the early morning meeting at the coffee table as fellow…
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