Tag Archive | Horror

Free Writing: The Dead Can Run (Chp 4 Prt1)

Please keep in mind this is a first draft and no revisions or editing should be done¬†as part of the exercise, though I failed miserably and edited for hours on end on this one. Though in no way does that mean you are getting a clean and amazing chapter, most likely the opposite. ūüôā

I will be properly revising and editing this story in the next few days. Here is hoping to have the first compilation of the first six chapters before the end of this month. Also, I am sorry for taking so long in continuing this story. This is intended to be a free writing project and I was brainstorming ahead. Needed to take time off to undo those chapters in my mind.

Warning: 1st draft, possible rambling

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The Dead Can Run

Chapter Four Part One

My teeth cut into my lower lip and my mouth filled with the taste of copper. I struggled to my feet to only be shoved back down. A hand pinned me to the floor by my hair followed by a knee to my back. The man was heavier than he looked.

“Let‚Ķlet me‚Ķgo,‚ÄĚ I pleaded, blood seeped from my busted lip and coated the floor to then cling to the strands of my hair that had fallen loose from his grip. I tried to muffle a cry at the touch of the man‚Äôs hand trailing down my bare back. His rough fingertips lapping up the droplets of water that still clung to my flesh.

“What do you say we have a little fun before I turn you over to our Mr. Self-Made Leader huh?‚ÄĚ the brute sneered, pressing me harder against the ground and digging his knee further into my back.

‚ÄúYou‚Äôre disgusting,‚ÄĚ I shouted past his mocking laughter. I recognized his voice. He had been one of the men I had overheard while tied in the closet. His companion must be the other man he had been talking to.

“Just kill me already,‚ÄĚ I cried, struggling against his hold as best as I could. My actions earned me another tug of my hair. Tears welt up in my eyes at the pain. I could feel my warm breath against my face and the blood draining from my fingers as I clung to the man‚Äôs wrist with both hands in an attempt to loosen his grip on my hair.

‚ÄúFeisty, I like them feisty,‚ÄĚ he laughed, yanking me to my feet, his grip on my hair threatening to scalp me where I stood.

“You know he won‚Äôt approve of this,‚ÄĚ Cassy cut in, removing her gloves and tossing them aside. She stepped back into the bathroom to emerge with the handcuffs. Her calm and blank demeanor told me there was no salvation there and my fear grew. Just what kind of people were they?

“Come on Cassy, relax. I wasn‚Äôt really going to rape her,‚ÄĚ the man who held me teased, pressing a blade against my skin. ‚ÄúAt least not right now,‚ÄĚ he whispered into my ear.

Were the zombies the real monsters here? I thought to myself as the knife nicked my skin.

“On second thought, why wait? I think you deserve a good reminder of how lucky it was that we found you. The zombies would have finished you off if it wasn‚Äôt for us. The least you can do is repay the gesture. What do you say?‚ÄĚ my tormentor replied, his voice full of malice and of something else I wanted nothing of.

The blade disappeared and I was shoved towards the bed again. I cringed as my hands came in contact with the blood stained sheets. The smell of death engulfed my nostrils and my gag reflexes reminded me that they still worked. I dropped to my knees and threw up again, this time white foam mixed with the blood that had dripped to the floor from the carnage on the bed.

Before I could wipe the vomit clinging to my lips my head was jerked back and the man pressed himself against me, kneeling behind me.

“Should I take your silence as consent?‚ÄĚ He ran his fingers across the side of my face. Every touch made my stomach twist with greater disgust, threatening to make me gag for a third time.

“Get off me,‚ÄĚ I snapped, elbowing him in the face. I had just walked in on a bunch of lunatics, deadly lunatics, but I wasn‚Äôt ready to die yet. I still hadn‚Äôt found my son and I wasn‚Äôt about to let them have their way with me either.

I bolted to my feet and dashed for freedom. The other man blockading the door leading out of my room grasped my arms and twisted them behind me, turning me around to face my first attacker. My eyes swelled in tears and my throat tightened, I tried to scream but nothing came out. I didn’t want to think about what they had planned for me. Now that I was found not to be infected, would I die or worse would they really rape me?

‚ÄúWhere do you think you‚Äôre going?‚ÄĚ the biggest of the brutes sneered, taking one broad step towards me. He grasped my neck with both his hands and squeezed. ‚ÄúYou really want to die? Then who are we to keep‚Ķ‚ÄĚ

The man behind me yelped in surprise and I was shoved forward into the very man who tried to strangle me. We both tumbled towards the bloodied bed. I rolled off the bed and slammed into the hard floor, slamming my head against the edge of the night stand. I withered on the floor and clung to my head. Silence filled the room and I chanced a glance at the man still sprawled on the bed.

‚ÄúWhat were my orders?‚ÄĚ a familiar voice bellowed followed by the sound of a gunshot. Warm blood splattered on my face and I screamed.

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Tackling that Cover

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All covers shown here were created by Dora Gonzalez (Me)

We have gone over revising, whether to use beta readers or not, and briefly discussed the importance of getting an editor. Next up is: Tacking that cover!

When it comes to getting a cover for your book there are many ways to go about it. You can design it yourself, pay someone to do it or get a premade cover? Which one will it be? Which one is best?

Here are a few things to consider…

There are many¬†discussions¬†about whether¬†you should make¬†your own covers versus hiring someone to do it for you, my opinion on that matter is this: if you have the skill then I don’t see why you can’t.

Creating your cover takes time, time you could spend writing or working on other aspects of getting your book ready for publication. But yet¬†a custom cover done by someone else¬†can’t always ensure you get the cover you want.

Premade covers cost the fraction of a custom cover. If you have a tight budget then this might be the route for you. There are countless websites and blogs offering premade covers.

Then, which one¬†should you use?¬†Whichever best¬†ensures your cover fits¬†your book. Check out a designer’s portfolio. Do they have examples of covers that are similar to what you are looking for?¬†Glance through photo stock to see if you can find images you would prefer to use.¬†Find out your budget and schedule.

Just remember a cover informs the reader about the genre it falls in, it gives a general idea of the audience it is hopping to attract and serves as an attention grabber.

Think about the reason(s) you pick up a book. What do you do first?

You look at the cover, tagline, title, author name and then you turn it over to read the blurb. Your cover is your first chance to attract the reader, you have to get it right!

Here are a few premade covers I have made. Can you tell the genre and audience? Does it match the one listed above each group? If yes, then the cover works.

Contemporary Romance/ Young Adult

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Fantasy/Young Adult

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Horror

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Paranormal

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Erotica/ Erotic Romance

BookCover37LR1 BookCover47LR1 BookCover002LR

How do you ensure your cover will work?

Break your book down, ask yourself what is my audience? What genre is my story revolved around? What is the main focus I want to express in my story?

You’ve written your book, now rewrite it with your cover.


All covers shown here are available through PremadeCovers4U or SelfPubBookCovers.

Dominion by Doug Goodman

Book Review

10/10

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Dominion has been taken from man. Now, six friends must cross an apocalyptic wasteland dominated by a hell’s menagerie of mega-fauna. Their middle-class suburban skills are no longer applicable to the world they live in. To find a safe haven in this world they will need to develop a new set of survival skills and fight the mutated denizens of the animal kingdom for every step of their terrifying journey.

Dominion is a post-apocalyptic thriller written by Doug Goodman. It was published through Severed Press, which is known for its military horror and apocalyptic stories. Dominion¬†fits right in with it’s¬†adrenaline pumped pace and climatic twists.

The story starts right smack in the middle of the chaotic event with Jaxon and Peter scavenging supplies for the rest of the group. Things get complicated for all of them and a set of choices are taken giving the reader a taste of the wonderful and violent nature of what it is to fight for survival. The story takes a brief change in pace with a flashback revealing how it all started or at least the beginning of the chaos the main characters find themselves in.

By stepping back in time characterization¬†is driven up a notch. Now you don’t have a group of young people striving to survive, you have a group of young people you care about go through loss and change in a world that has¬†mutated to kill them. The heart pounding¬†race to stay alive continues accompanied by¬†a few smaller and brief flashbacks that¬†never let up in¬†adding to the realism of the characters.

The way the story is set causes¬†the horrors that are occurring to become¬†even more riveting and nerve racking. Thus one isn’t simply reading a post-apocalyptic story, one¬†is transported into the story itself. The desire to urge the characters forward, to question and pry about their choices, their¬†need to survive each and every stumble they¬†comes across becomes second nature.

From the roc, the grackle, the relentless wargs, the unexpected tricking form of the Dryder and the tentacle monstrosity Malifax, the horrors and dangers come in many shapes and forms. Add in the over grown bees, bats, and my own personal favorite-the squirrel, and you have an array of creatures that are more horrific than the last.

Though it is never explained exactly why the animals and creatures came to be what they are now, the story is filled with heart pacing, nerve wrecking moments that propel the reader all the way to the end. Dominion gives you all the horrors, tension, and mishap a post-apocalyptic setting offers with an even more surprising and moving ending.

Great imagery, realistic characterization, sense driven description, and witty dialogue all make this story far more than just a post-apocalyptic story, it makes it enjoyable, moving, and a must read. Dominion is the first I have read from this author, publisher and genre. It differs from the usual end of the world zombie norm and will keep you screaming and jumping in your seat.

Sum it up: A different and fresh take to the end of the world delivered in a whole new level of horror.

What I liked most: The intensity of the story, the various creatures and the ending, gosh I loved the ending!

What I liked the least: The formatting. Every page or so had the page number and title of the book somewhere in the page distracting me from reading. But I think my kindle setting was mainly to blame for that and the fact that I was reading an ARC. The original eBook does not have those issues.

Would I read the sequel(s)? Yes. Not sure if there will be a sequel, but the ending has enough reminiscence for another one and if it does I want to read it. In fact, getting the paperback of Dominion is quite tempting, this story deserves to be read more than once.

Get the eBook

Hope you enjoyed this book review. Doug Goodman is one of our guest authors we had the privilege to take part in last year’s NANOWRIMO pep talks. Check out¬†what he had to say about harvesting ideas¬†if you missed it¬†and don’t forget to come back to read our next review on Accidental Passion: Seduction written by Meagan Hedin. Like the title suggests,¬†our next review promises to¬†be steamy and seductive. ūüôā

February Free eBook Spotlight: Day 3

Today is quite a special day. Today we feature a free eBook written by one of our followers. See I do stalk you guys from time to time. ūüôā Thanks Sara for taking the time to follow my blog and look forward to reading your book, big fan of werewolves.

Day 3: (Young Adult)

Xoe: or Vampires, and Werewolves, and Demons, oh my! (Xoe Meyers Series Book 1) by Sara C. Roethle

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Get eBook

Synopsis

Xoe Meyers had a normal life. So she was stuck going to high school, and she only had a few friends to call her own. She liked her normal life. Things were about to change though, because there’s a new guy in her small town, and he is anything but normal. Before Xoe can say, “Werewolf,” her best friend’s life is in peril, and Xoe’s world is turned upside-down. Then, of course, there’s Jason. Xoe doesn’t trust him as far as she can throw him, and given that he’s a vampire, she’d have to be able to catch him first.

Stats

  • #2,561 Free in Kindle Store
  • #24 in Literature & Fiction > Horror > Occult
  • #35 in Romance > Paranormal > Demons & Devils

Remember you are all welcomed to comment on any of these titles if you do download and read them or check out the authors and their blogs/websites. Have a great day and don’t forget to come back tomorrow for another free eBook recommendation.

Catching up on Reading

These past few weeks have been quite a handful. I traveled from Texas to Illinois and back again, got sick and then better to only get sick again. The cold weather didn’t agree with me at all. ūüė¶ But no worries next week we will continue with our After NANOWRIMO and tackle one of the hardest and most often ignored step:¬†editing. For now enjoy the titles I am currently reading while I catch up on my much needed¬†bed rest.

Paperback: A Soldier’s Duty (Theirs Not to Reason Why) by Jean Johnson

ASoldier'sDuty

Ia is a precog, blessed-or cursed-with visions of the future. She has witnessed the devastation of her home galaxy three hundred years in the future, long after she is gone, but believes she can prevent it.

Enlisting in the modern military of the Terran United Planets, Ia plans to rise through the ranks, meeting and influencing important people and building a reputation that will inspire others for the next three centuries. But she needs to be assigned to the right ship, the right company, and the right place to earn that reputation honestly-all while keeping her psychic abilities hidden from her superiors, who would refuse to risk such a valuable gift in combat.

To save the galaxy, Ia must become someone else: the soldier known as Bloody Mary.

eBook: Dominion by Doug Goodman

dominion-doug-goodman

Dominion has been taken from man. Now, six friends must cross an apocalyptic wasteland dominated by a hell’s menagerie of mega-fauna. Their middle-class suburban skills are no longer applicable to the world they live in. To find a safe haven in this world they will need to develop a new set of survival skills and fight the mutated denizens of the animal kingdom for every step of their terrifying journey.

eBook: The Angel of Death by Blair C. Babylon

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To protect and to serve, or to save her own brother?

Angel Day, the lead sniper for the Phoenix Police Department, got her nickname ‚ÄúThe Angel of Death‚ÄĚ the old-fashioned way: she earned it for her ruthless efficiency at stopping crimes with one well-placed bullet. When a massive call-out down by the Mexican Border reveals a terrorist cell and turns into a standoff, Angel‚Äôs youngest brother, the lost soul of her family, texts her that he is inside that barricaded house, and her orders are to shoot anything that moves.

Harvesting Ideas by Doug Goodman

Seven more days and NaNoWriMo comes to an end. What a rush.¬†Will you be a winner? Struggling to get those final ideas down? Searching for¬†another doze of motivation to jump that final leap? Check out author¬†Doug Goodman’s pep talk and get writing.

 

Harvesting Ideas

Here is one of my truths of writing:  ideas are like fruit.  They are planted, they are nourished, and they are harvested.  When properly harvested, ideas can be sweet and juicy and inspiring.  But left to over-ripen, they can die on the vine.  This is the problem I have as a writer.  A good idea gestates a proper length, then must be plucked.  The harvesting is the writing itself.

I have on more than one occasion written a beautiful beginning to a story, then let the story gestate until a new story idea absorbs me and I get busy working that idea, and then everything else in life tumbles along and a year later, I have forgotten to go back to the original idea.  When I finally returned to that beginning, I read it, and I am amazed at how beautiful it is worded, and I am enthralled with the setup.  What a great story, I wonder how the rest of it goes!  Then I remember that I wrote it; I am the one responsible for the rest of the story.  I wonder where I was going with what I wrote.  What was I thinking?  It sounded great, and I would love to read more, but the idea has wilted and died.

For NaNoWriMo, this process is sped up, but the same repercussions exist.¬† Stories can die.¬† They can lay there like half-eaten fruit devoured by finches and blue jays.¬† This is why it is so important to keep writing, keep pushing yourself, to finish the project.¬† Finish!¬† That alone is an accomplishment.¬† I used to compare it to running a marathon.¬† For most, it‚Äôs not about trying to break some record or place in a race, the simple act of finishing is an accomplishment.¬† You will have written a novel.¬† Few people can actually say that.¬† And think about it:¬† a finished project is much easier to adjust than an unfinished one.¬† You can always go back and cut off the final act of your story, which is what I did for a recent project of mine.¬† This is what the editing process is for, but ideas that are not fully developed are beyond difficult to renovate.¬† Again, you return to the problems of ‚Äúwhere was I going with this?‚ÄĚ and ‚Äúwhat was I thinking?‚ÄĚ

And this is the hardest time of NaNoWriMo.  Everybody knows this.  Sure, it was easy to dedicate yourself to a rough draft on November 1, but then you took off that weekend, and now you are starting to feel like you are behind.  And the holidays are beginning.  Thanksgiving requires attention (cooking, cleaning, football watching, holiday luncheons) as well as early Christmas duties (Black Fridays and shopping and decorations), but don’t disregard the writing project.  Get your numbers in.  Put your words together.  Don’t worry about refining yet.  You are a writer.  This is what writers do.  We sit in front of computer screens and try to squeeze blood from a stone.  You can make it happen.  Leave revising to you in three months.  For now, concentrate on the moment.

If you put it off, you may find that it is mid-January, and that great idea you had in November is now an autumn fruit that has died on your vine.

 

Bio:

Doug Goodman is a writer who lives on the Texas Gulf coast. He works at NASA and in his spare time when he is not writing about death and destruction, he trains human remains dogs. Dominion is his first book with Severed Press, and Warriors of Camlann is his first self-published book. His writing has also appeared in anthologies such as Twisted Boulevard, Horrors Beyond, Cthulhu Unbound, and State of Horror: Texas.

 

book2Where you can find his books:

Dominion (post-apocalyptic horror): http://www.amazon.com/Dominion-Apocalyptic-Thriller-Doug-Goodman-ebook/dp/B00NJ6T5GW/ref=asap_B00IHF1I8S_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1416675192&sr=1-3

Warriors of Camlann (bloody King Arthur): http://www.amazon.com/Warriors-Camlann-1-Doug-Goodman/dp/1484836863/ref=asap_B00IHF1I8S_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1416675195&sr=1-5


I hope you enjoyed today’s pep talk. I was thrilled to meet, Doug Goodman,¬†one of the nicest and energetic writers I know, at South Texas Comic Con¬†last month and just had to have him as a guest in our blog. Don’t forget to check out our previous pep talk by author Willow Wood.

July Free e-Book Spotlight Week2

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Second week is a little late. Was trying to post a few other blogs in between each spotlight, but life tends to get pretty busy when you least expect it. Still we kick off with two free reads of the anthology kind. With this many stories in two collections there is bound to be a story that fits your taste(s).

What is better than a story? Several.

HerebeMonsters

Here be Monsters has plenty to satisfy your horror/thriller taste buds. Sink your teeth into eight tales of vampires, werewolves, demons, zombies, and other horrors that lurk in the dark.

Get Free e-Book

And if you prefer longer stories and maybe even from the same author why not try Four and¬†a 1/2 Shades of Fantasy by W.J. May. This fantasy packed anthology hosts the first books of each series. What better way to try out an author you haven’t read yet.

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Check out the Author

Get free e-Book

Thanks for stopping by. Make sure to check back next week. We will be sinking our teeth into a whole different genre. Now its back to work for me. ūüôā