Randall's Ramblings

Randall’s Ramblings – 17 Apr 2016

At last spring has arrived. We’ve had brilliant sunshine for the past three days with more anticipated. The temperatures climbed into the lower 60s.  About time! Despite the change of weather, yard work was put on temporary hold yesterday. The wireless keyboard for our Mac stopped working. Despite changing batteries the times in a twenty-four-hour period, it continued to stop.  So we took a trip to Best Buy, fifty miles away, to pick up a replacement.  Now we’re back in business!

Why I want to Write–What’s Led Me to This Stage in My Life

My journey into the world of writing continues.  This week I received some feedback on my writing in an area that I never realized there was a problem.  In my expository writing it was never an issue, or at least it was never pointed out.  What’s the issue? Contractions. Or rather, the lack of them.  Someone pointed out that my dialogue would be smoother if I reduced more I am, he will, they would, etc., to their more important contractions. Yep, using I’m, he’ll, and they’d certainly made a difference and the dialogue seems more natural. Something new learned to help me along the way.

A bit more from the Kurdish Connection:

They entered an old three-story structure with broken windows, covered with peeling paint and graffiti sprayed by local soccer team supporters. As they made their way to a large back room, they maneuvered around stacks of damaged furniture and litter.  Inside, a long varnished table, with polished wood resembling glass, took center stage.  Ten men, including the three Iraqi mullahs, sat at the table.  Mullah Mala, the firebrand speaker from Zakho, greeted Dersim. “Welcome. Join us and I’ll introduce you.”

Mufti Tanreverdi’s eyes narrowed as he studied each man in the room. “Our first task is to free Öcalan.  Under his guidance, we can proceed to our final objective, a united Kurdistan, even if that means war.”

He followed the road to a faded gray, three-story brick warehouse hidden in the trees near the rear of the base. He exited the car and began the second round of security. Damn, why can’t they embed a chip in my ass and skip the repetitive shit? One zap with a scanner and done.

The admiral paused before giving the team their orders. “Bedlam Alpha’s objective is to locate and recover the chemical weapons and disrupt the Kurdish plots without either the Turkish or Syrian governments realizing the threats. I don’t need to describe the ensuing catastrophe should the Kurds use their arsenal in either of those countries, Iraq, or Iran.” 

CC heaved a big sigh. Well, I wanted out of the day-to-day grind. I got my wish!

More next week.

My Work in Progress

The ongoing process of reviewing various critiques I received on ‘The Kurdish Connection’ continued, with several recommendations added into my manuscript. Chapter four was completed and re-posted to the two subscription writing sites I use. Editing of chapter five is underway and hope to have it completed and posted by next Sunday.

My research of publishing houses accepting unsolicited manuscripts continued this week. I now have the beginnings of a list where I’ll send submissions once I complete the current round of editing.  While there are similarities in requirements, they vary enough that each submission must be carefully crafted to meet the preliminary demands.

With all of the concentration on ‘The Kurdish Connection’, work on ‘A Cartel’s Revenge’ continues its holding pattern.  Perhaps I’ll be able to do a bit more this coming week.

Books I’m Reading

Over the past week I finished ‘Blanket of Blood‘ by Eileen Wharton and published by Bloodhound Books at the beginning of April.  A chilling tale about a serial killer with fingers pointing at several possible candidates. Detective Inspector Blood, an apt name given the circumstance surrounding the victims’ deaths, leads his team in a desperate race to find the killer. A fast pace with plenty of unsuspecting characters being checked out by DI Blood as potential suspects. Throughout the story, glimpses of the dark secrets leading to the killer’s rampage emerge, but never enough to identify the person. A great suspense that will keep you reading on. As with many crime stories, the killer is eventually caught, but the identity of the perpetrator will keep you guessing right to the end. Well done!

A special thanks to Fred Freeman at Bloodhound Books for giving me a copy of ‘Blanket of Blood’ in return for my unbiased review.

Blogs/Author Pages/Writing Sites I’d Like to Share

I’ve now expanded this section from being only about blogs that I follow but also introduce you to some new authors and a few writing sites. Hope you’ll check out the links!

Scott Hastie – A writer, artist, and poet who uses his gifts to inspire others.

Writing Resources

As I continue to edit ‘The Kurdish Connection’ and work on my cover letter and synopsis, I’ve found three resources:

Write and Revise for Publication – by Jack Smith. A six-month plan for crafting an exceptional novel.

How to Write the Cover Letter for Your Submission to a Publisher – written by an editor.

Rock Your Query – A Simple System for Writing Query Letters and Synopses by Cathy Yardley.

We’ve come to the end of another ramble.  Hope you’ve found something of interest or at least useful for your own writing.  Until the next time, thank you for reading!

© Copyright 2016 Randall Krzak. All rights reserved.

 

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