Randall’s Ramblings, June 26, 2016

The summer solstice passed by this week. Seems like it wasn’t that long ago we were in the middle of winter. The longest day of the year, marking the beginning of summer, was on Monday, June 20.

This year the solstice coincided with Strawberry Moon, something that hasn’t happened since 1948 and apparently it will be 2062 before the next double occurrence. What exactly is the Strawberry Moon? I had no idea.

According to The Old Farmer’s Almanac, the name originates from the collection of strawberries by Native American Algonquin tribes, who took the changing color of the moon to be the ideal time to pick the fruit. There are plenty of articles regarding the Strawberry Moon, so if you’re interested in reading more, have a Google.

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

Last week I introduced readers to my first venture into a futuristic/alternate world as I prepare a short story as a contest submission. I dubbed this, ‘Countdown to Extinction’. Here’s a bit more:

Ten hours later, Sam awoke with a jolt. A portion of his monitor flashed red. He silenced the alarm and scanned the data to determine the cause. By his calculations, the drill should be at a depth of six hundred meters.

Incorrect—six hundred fifty meters.

“What’s causing the inaccuracy? The machine stopped as programmed. Why has it cleared another twenty-five meters? Very strange.”

Malfunction identified. Damaged drill head.

Adding a replacement part to his backpack, Sam left the shelter and strode to the tunnel’s entrance. Glancing around, he headed inside, trudging through the residue thrown back by the MUA.

When he reached the drill, he came to a halt and glanced down … at what appeared to be a footprint. Sam whipped around, a feeling of dread rising in his conscious. Nothing. He used the built-in photo-mod to capture the image.

“Maybe I need to change the oxygen mixture. Must be causing me to hallucinate.”

He tapped his helmet, closed his eyes, and shook his head. Opening his eyes, he glanced back down. The footprint remained.

Final installment next week.

My Work in Progress

It’s been a busy week with my works in progress. ‘A Cartel’s Revenge’ is on hold for the next week or so, pending critiques from a group called Round Table Pals, where we take turns reviewing three chapters written by the six participants. Once the group finishes, I’ll be making edits and continuing to write.

About two-thirds of my short story ‘Countdown to Extinction’ is complete, at least in the first draft stage. Hope to finish the draft in the next few days.

I’ve written most of the first chapter for the second book in the Bedlam Series, ‘A Malicious Affiliation.’ Perhaps in a couple of weeks I’ll begin including some snippets in my ramblings.

Books I’m Reading

Over the past two weeks, I read ‘The Piedersen Conspiracy: An Ed Vandera and Marti Ellis Series Thriller Book One‘ by Christian Dane. I’ll begin my comments by stating I can’t wait to read book two.  Uncovering a possible cyber crime leads Ed and Marti on an exciting and dangerous adventure. The crime is much more than it seems, with a group plotting the demise of three generations of the Vandera family.

As the story moves through it paces, we uncover more clues to the group after the Vandera family. They set a seventy-two hour window in which Ed and Marti must appear or deadly events will unfold. They pick up help along the way, but a forcibly removed finger and a kidnapping makes the situation seem dire for Ed’s family. It’s not until the end of the story that we learn to what extent the criminals went to in order to extract their revenge.  A great read from a new author. Well worth the read.

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

I’ve 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!

Sideways Eight Series – Meet series author, AJ Wallace, and learn more about her first novel, Mindfield and her works in progress.

I came across two blogs in the past few days dedicated to our feline friends and can’t resist sharing them:

Cat Lady Lives On – Pictures tell us a thousand words and the cats show us how.

My Cat Can Blog – More cat antics.

Writing Resources

I don’t have any new writing resources to share this week.  I hope to have something new for next week as my research increases. Have an enjoyable weekend.

Once again, 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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