Konnichiwa, friends and neighbors! As the headline above states, and as I am pleased to announce, The Chasm and the Collision: Chapter 5 is now available on Amazon for Kindle and other readers (just click on the chapter for the link).
In this chapter, Alex has a discussion with the intruder in his house (whose name is Peetry) on the other side of the dining room wall, and learns a bit more about what’s happening to him and to his friends. He also becomes aware once again of a danger he’s encountered before. More questions are surely raised for him than are answered, but at least he’s making headway.
For those of you following the story, I hope you’re enjoying it. I apologize that there has been such a long hiatus in the publication of the chapters of Mark Red and The Chasm and the Collision. While I was away, I sent the handwritten works to my sister, and she published the chapters serially for me as she completed the truly heroic work of typing them into the computer. It often took her a great deal of time to do this. To try to give you an idea of why it took a great deal of time, I’ll say this: Many brave and intelligent individuals prefer to decipher ancient Mayan and Aztec writings, without a primer on the languages, rather than attempt to read my handwriting.
Actually, most would people prefer to be hit on the head with a ball-peen hammer rather than be forced to read my handwriting.
I don’t even really enjoy doing it myself, if it comes down to it, but since I am the one who wrote the books (almost 600 pages of Mark Red and almost 700 pages of The Chasm and the Collision) I have no one else to blame. At least I can always read my own writing, which is more than can be said for anyone else.
That actually raises an important point: If anyone notices anything peculiar–perhaps an odd choice of words or something along those lines–in the first 11 chapters of Mark Red or the first 4 chapters of The Chasm and the Collision, there’s one of two explanations: Either I simply wrote it badly (in the penmanship sense) and my poor sister had to guess at what I was trying to say, or I simply wrote it badly (in the authorial sense) and she was stuck reproducing bad writing. In any case, all thanks belong to her for bringing you those chapters, and all errors and confusion have their origins in me.
Now that I’m back from being away, I’m going to try to publish these Chapters at least once a month for each book, in order to keep the rhythm going, and (hopefully) to keep everyone interested.
For those of you who don’t know, I’ll give you a very brief rundown of the plots of the two novels (both of which are complete, at least in draft, just so you know).
Mark Red: The protagonist, Mark Reed, is a teenager who works in an ice cream parlor three evenings a week to earn a bit of extra money for himself and his family. He’s an earnest and well-meaning young man, and one evening, as he leaves work, he sees a woman who appears to be in the process of being attacked by a large man in a dark alley. He rushes to her aid, but is no match for her attacker, and he’s stabbed by the man from whom he was trying to defend her. As he falls to the ground, bleeding and about to die, it becomes clear that the woman he meant to protect was not human. She makes short work of her attacker, and then saves Mark in the only way she can. This process fundamentally changes Mark’s life, and brings him and the object of his intended good deed together in a strange relationship. She desperately wants to find out how to cure Mark from what she has done to him. At the same time, she also dedicates herself to protecting Mark from the consequences of her actions…and to protecting everyone else from Mark.
The Chasm and the Collision: This story centers around three pre-teens, Alex Hinton, Simon Belmont, and Meghan Tewes. One day, coming home from school with Simon, Alex thinks he sees movement in his house before they go in. However, he finds no one home, and though Simon is nervous (which is his nature), the two nevertheless enter the dwelling. The only atypia they find inside is a triple-branch of berries in the fruit bowl in Alex’s dining room. The berries smell wonderful and taste even better. Alex and Simon eat this fruit, sharing it with Meghan, on whom Alex has a crush, and whom he sees walking by as he and Simon are about to indulge themselves. The rest of that day passes uneventfully, but that night, the three begin to have strange dreams–as well as other frightening experiences that seem to be all too real–and gradually they become aware that the fruit was only the beginning of their involvement in events that are uncanny, wondrous, and dangerous on a scale they could not have imagined.
Well, that’s the quick run-down on those two books. I hope you’ll read and enjoy them.
FYI: I’m almost done now with my third book, Son of Man, which is more purely science fiction than either of the previous two. It’s an idea I’ve been sitting on for almost twenty years; hopefully it’s matured in that time, rather than decayed. I can’t tell. It’s all wonderful and enjoyable to me, but I’m the author. You can’t take my word for it. In any case, I’m not going to start publishing chapters of Son of Man until I’m at least most of the way done publishing Mark Red and/or CatC.
I also intend, somewhen along the line here, to publish a “short” story that I wrote while away. I’m using scare quotes because it’s about 76 pages long (handwritten) and something along the lines of 25,000 words. So it’s not a very short story, but it’s too short to be a novella. Anyway, it’s called Paradox City, and it’s about a man who enters the titular nightclub to find some rather peculiar happenings. At first they’re just puzzling, and then they’re quite pleasant…but things take a more troubling turn eventually. (Bwa ha haaa!)
So, that’s a quick rundown of my writing that’s available, as well as that which is still in progress. I’d love to receive any feedback you might wish to give. You can write in the comments below, or contact me through my Facebook page, or my Twitter account (@RobElessar). I’m also on G+ and LinkedIn.
You can’t get away from me. Don’t even bother trying.
As if I hadn’t just given you links enough (a phrase which sounds like it really ought to be a Victorian exclamation of frustration), here are links to each of the hitherto published chapters of Mark Red and The Chasm and the Collision. Please enjoy.
I do hope you’ll read them, and if you like them, tell your friends. Also, remember, 50% of the royalties from all of my writing goes to literacy charities such as RIF, so we can all help share the joy of reading with those who have not yet been able to experience it.
Oh, by the way: Today is my daughter’s 14th birthday. Happy Birthday, Kyra!! It’s no mere coincidence that I’ve timed my first new publication since my return to occur on your birthday weekend. ^_^