Randall's Ramblings

Randall’s Ramblings, January 16, 2022

After a week of continuous dreary skies, we finally have a bit of sunshine. Not sure how long it will last, as rain clouds are building up along the skyline.  At least it was dry, and I was finally able to clean up the last of autumn’s fallen leaves.

Overall, the first three-day small business market of the year was a success. I sold fourteen novels, while seventeen of Sylvia’s laminated poetry sheets went home to happy customers, along with three of her poetry books. Our next event will be the first weekend in February.

Here’s this week’s quote (Compliments of http://www.wisdomquotesandstories.com/): “It’s OK to not have the answer yet. Continue your journey and trust the process.”

So who was born on this date in history? Let’s find out who in the writing world was born on January 16th, the third Sunday of the new year. (Compliments of http://www.onthisday.com/today/birthdays):

Dorthe Engelbrechtsdatter, Norwegian poet; Louis de Rouvroy, duc de Saint-Simon, French writer (Mémoires); Richard Savage, English poet and playwright; Vittorio Alfieri, Italian count, dramatist and poet (Maria Stuarda) who is considered the founder of Italian tragedy; Andre Michelin, French industrialist, tire manufacturer (Michelin) and publisher of the Michelin Guide; Frank Bacon, American playwright, actor and author (Lightnin’); Robert W. Service, English-Canadian poet (Cremation of Sam McGee); Robert Garbe, German poet (Gorniek); Zhou Zuoren, Chinese writer; Osip Brik, Russian writer; Nat Schachner, American author; Ruth Rose, American screenwriter; Carlos Pellicer, Mexican poet; Franz Tumler, Austrian author/novelist (Cloak, Aufruf); Stirling Silliphant, screenwriter; Nel Benschop, Dutch poet; Anthony Hecht, American poet; William Kennedy, American writer; Vladimír Škutina, Czechoslovakian writer and actor (Hvezda jede na jih); Susan Sontag, American author & film director (Benefactor, 1966 Pol Award); Magdalen Nabb, British author; Ruth Reichl, American magazine editor; Brian Castro, Australian author; and Garth Ennis, Irish comic book author.

Any names familiar to you? The only name I know is Andre Michilen. Whether you recognize anyone on the list or not, if today’s your special day I hope you have a great one!

My Published Work

6 Novels

All of my novels are participating in a Terrifying New Year promotion, running from now until the end of January. With 118 novels available, there’s bound to me something to catch your interest.

In addition, The Kurdish Connection, Colombian Betrayal, and Mission: Angola are participating in a first-in-series promotion for mysteries and thrillers. There are sixty-four novels in this one.

My Work in Progress

Slide1This week I posted chapter twenty-two to the two online subscription writing sites I use. Ultimate Escalation received another twenty-four chapter reviews, bringing the total to 492. Plenty of suggestions to enhance my writing.

Here’s another snippet:

KS-1 cut through the water at twelve knots just below the surface. Captain 3rd Rank Karol Pushkin, the former commander of a Russian hunter-killer submarine, kept his eye on the periscope’s eyepiece. Satisfied with the space between KS-1 and surface ships in the narrow Straits of Hormuz, he stepped toward his visitors.

“Comrade Colonel. Welcome to the KS-1. We refer to her as the Negodyay.

“Spacibo, Captain. Please call me Vladimir. My military rank was long ago.” He shook hands with Pushkin. “I look forward to our journey on the Villain.”

“We shall cruise along the coast until we reach the Gulf of Oman before heading to deeper water.” Pushkin turned and shouted an order to a seaman with a dark complexion hunched over a scope.

“Still clear, Captain.”

“Very well. Continue as planned.” Pushkin glanced around the control room before turning back to Vladimir. “Ever been on a submarine before?”

“Nyet. How big is the crew?”

“The Lyre class submarines, which NATO called the Alfa class, was designed for operations with a crew as small as fourteen, plus a cook. When active, this was increased to thirty-one.” Pushkin smiled. “Today, we use the minimum crew size.”

Vladimir gestured toward the man still studying his scope. “What nationality is he? I don’t think he’s Russian.”

“You are correct. He’s Iranian, as is half my crew. They all trained on Kilo-class diesel-electric submarines Mother Russia built for the Islamic Republic of Iran, selling them for hundreds of millions of rubles.”

“How did they end up on the Negodyay?

“They became disenchanted with their government.” Pushkin shrugged. “We offered them an opportunity, and they joined us.”

“Interesting. How—”

“Captain! An American cruiser is ahead of us.”

“Rig for ultra-quiet. Take us down.”

The submarine tilted, continuing downward until it hovered just about the sandy bottom. Quiet ensued as the crew, Vladimir, and Mishka kept their movements to a minimum.

Ping!

The sound all submariners dread echoed throughout the Negodyay.

Minutes passed, the only sound was the men snatching shallow breaths.

The sonar man waved an arm to attract Pushkin’s attention.

The captain approached and leaned toward the seaman. “What’s the status?” His voice was almost inaudible.

“The Americans—they are heading toward the Iranian shore. I picked up several noises from Iranian attack craft.”

Pushkin relaxed. “Keep an eye on them.” He shuffled to the helmsman’s position. “Ahead dead slow. Hug the bottom until we clear the area and resume our normal depth.”

“Yes, Comrade Captain.”

Clang!

More next time.

Slide1During slow periods while attending the Christmas market and last weekend’s market, I began working on Frozen Conquest. So far, I have two draft chapters, but they’re not quite ready to post on the two subscription writing sites.  For those who might not be aware, here’s the initial synopsis:

An international criminal gang, known as Diablo Corps, plans a series of devastating attacks to take over the G7 countries unless their demands are met. Secure in their hidden headquarters in Antarctica, they possess the means to disrupt the leading world economies. The Diablos want what other power-hungry people want—more power.

Will the G7 bend to the will of these rogues or will evil triumph? Diablo Corps believes their previous infiltration of the international banking system and world stock exchanges will allow them to risk all on a single gamble.

The Scandinavian Protection Agency joins forces with Bedlam Delta to thwart the efforts of the group and restore faith Will Antarctica become a smoking ruin or will the world suffer an economic meltdown?

Books I’m Reading

I was going to post a review of The Lair of Anubis (The Project Book 20) by Alex Lukeman when I realized I had already posted one. For those who might not have seen it, here it is again:

Nick and Selena are embroiled in another battle to preserve relics from the past, this time the lost tomb of Alexander the Great.  Since I haven’t read the previous books in the series, I thoroughly enjoyed this nonstop action-packed adventure. If you haven’t read any of Alex’s books, here’s another author to check out. I’ll be heading back to the beginning of the series to find out how it all began!

This brings us to an end for another week. I hope you found something of interest. If you have any suggestions for a topic you’d like to read about, please let me know. Until the next time, thank you for reading and hope you drop in again.

© Copyright 2022 Randall Krzak. All rights reserved

 

Randall's Ramblings

Randall’s Ramblings, October 3, 2021

As we move into a new month, there’s no doubt autumn is upon us. Morning temperatures are in the low 40s (6-8C) with plenty of dew. So far, the leaves haven’t started to change, but it probably won’t be long before they start.

We’ve been at the monthly small business market the past two days. Plenty of lookers, but few buyers. Perhaps today will be better! Still, we can’t complain; I’ve sold another eight books and fifteen sheets of Sylvia’s poetry.

Here’s this week’s quote (Compliments of http://www.wisdomquotesandstories.com/): “You can only let someone throw so many stones at you before you pick them all up, put them together and build a wall to keep them from doing it again.”

So who was born on this date in history? Let’s find out who in the writing world was born on October 3rd, the first Sunday of the month. (Compliments of http://www.onthisday.com/today/birthdays): Johann Peter Uz, German poet (Lyrische Poem); George Bancroft, American historian (History of the United States); Allan Kardec, French author and founder of Spiritism; Mikhail Lermontov, Russian poet and writer (Demon & other poems); Timothy Thomas Fortune, American orator, civil rights leader, writer and publisher; Stijn Streuvels [Frank Lateur], Flemish writer (De Valschaard); Sophie Treadwell, American playwright and journalist; Henri Alain-Fournier, French novelist (Le Grand Meaulnes); Gerardo Diego, Spanish poet (Versos humanos); Louis Aragon, French poet and writer (Les Lettres françaises, Pour un réalisme socialiste); Thomas Wolfe, American novelist (Look Homeward Angel); David Herbert, British writer and raconteur; James Herriot [Alfred Wight], English veterinarian and novelist (All Creatures Great and Small); Harvey Kurtzman, American cartoonist and founding editor of Mad magazine; Gore Vidal, American author (Myra Breckinridge, Lincoln); Bernard Cooper, American novelist and short story writer; Dan Goldie, American tennis player and author (“The Investment Answer”, #1 NY Times bestselling book); and Rob Liefeld, American comic book writer and artist.

Any names familiar to you? There were three for me: Thomas Wolfe, James Herriot, and Gore Vidal. Whether you recognize anyone on the list or not, if today’s your special day I hope you have a great one and many more to follow!

My Published Work

Until the 15th of october, all of my novels are participating in a Kindle Unlimited spy thrillers promotion.  There are forty-five novels available through this promotion, so you’re bound to find something of interest. If you’re not a member of Kindle Unlimited, what better time to join?

Colombian Betrayal and Mission: Angola are also participating in a promotion of the first books in a mystery or thriller series. I could only include two, so The Kurdish Connection missed out. There are thirty-eight books in this Kindle and paperback promotion, so why not stop by?

Coming Soon!

Revenge-Cover-HRThe final edit of Revenge is almost complete.

Six members of my Advanced Reader Team provided feedback, and everything’s on track. Just waiting for the paperback cover. All being well, Revenge will be released by mid-October.

In case you missed the synopsis, here it is:

Relegated to a desk job at the Pentagon despite his last field mission being a success, Colonel Javier Smith submits his retirement papers.  He moves forward with his plans to create a security and investigative agency called the Brusch Agency. The focus will be aiding international clientele.

AJ Bruce, who co-led the mission with Smith, finds herself rooted at CIA Headquarters. Although now in charge of the division responsible for tracking terrorist groups in Latin America, she misses the action from being in the field.

Meanwhile, Alberto Cabrera was one of four terrorists who survived Bruce and Smith’s mission. Also known as Abdul Rahman, he enlists the assistance of the others who escaped and vows to track down those who killed his friends and comrades.

As Javier and AJ grow closer together, will the future hold wedding bells or funerals? Hang onto your hats as the story unfolds.

My Work in Progress

Slide1Although our son’s visit ended on Tuesday, writing and editing is still on the back burner. However, twelve chapter reviews came in for Ultimate Escalation, bringing the total to 286.

Here’s another snippet:

Members of the three Bedlam teams descended upon Camp Powell from their respective facilities in the U.S., UK, and Australia for their initial two-day conference. Comprised of former military and intelligence personnel from around the world, they perform high-stress missions behind the scenes in conflict areas when their services are needed.

“Cheers! Slangevar!”

Glasses clinked as the advisors of the three Bedlam teams shared a bottle of Talisker eighteen-year-old single malt whiskey. Sir Alexander Jackson and Harrison Robertson sipped their unadulterated drinks while Admiral Richard Blakely dropped an ice cube into his five-sided tumbler.

“Ah.” Sir Alex smacked his lips. “The perfect libation to open our conference.”

Harrison stood and gazed over the stone veranda at the rolling hills, covered with forests, fields, and pastures. “Richard, thank you for setting this up in such a splendid venue. How did you manage such a feat?”

“Not a problem when you know the right people.” Richard laughed. “While many organizations can use the camp’s facilities, the use of the manor house is hard to arrange. Our recent successes opened the doors for us, so I took advantage of the opportunity. Of course, it didn’t hurt the building wasn’t being used this weekend.”

“I’m sure the teams will enjoy the friendly competitions you’ve arranged.” Sir Alex refreshed their drinks. “No one will be shooting back at them.”

Richard waved a hand. “With our current threat boards empty, I thought it was time to bring everyone together in one location. We’re less than an hour from Dulles Airport, so we can spring into action if needed. Besides, it won’t be long before my stint as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff come to an end.”

“I, for one, hope it remains quiet.” Sir Alex loosened his navy-blue tie and slipped off the jacket of his Savile Row suit. “We all need the opportunity to relax.” He glanced at Richard. “Perhaps your president will allow you to remain as Alpha’s advisor?”

“It’s been discussed, but nothing finalized yet. He also mentioned he wanted to talk with your prime ministers regarding the establishment of a fourth team, stationed in Africa.”

“Hear, hear. I agree with Sir Alex. Your president must be convinced to keep you as an advisor. After all, the Bedlam organization was your dreamchild.” Harrison finished his drink and set the glass down. “Even more important, as nice as it is for us to relax, the teams need a chance to unwind and recharge.”

“We can discuss the creation of a fourth team later and make our recommendations.” Richard glanced at his watch. “C’mon. There’s time before dinner for a stroll through the gardens.”

There’ll be another snippet next week.

That brings us to an end for another week. I hope you found something of interest. If you have any suggestions for a topic you’d like to read about, please let me know. Until the next time, thank you for reading and hope you drop in again.

© Copyright 2021 Randall Krzak. All rights reserved