Tuesday, July 31, 2018

A Tasty Selection of Beginnings

I have lots of stories (author-wise and reader-wise). Hey, that's what happens when you read books like you breathe air and need a great excuse to drink fraps--you gotta have the caffeine to write! ;)

Anyway, I recently put my novels, novellas and short stories into Kindle Unlimited. Yep, the whole dang tasty pie. It's a lot of stuff, and if you are unsure where to start, maybe this will help. Below, I have the beginnings of five works selected at random. I have lots of other works too, so expect a few more posts similar to this one.

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"Victoria's Very Awkward Love Story," novel published in 2012

Victoria Dourne struck the jackpot on her first seduction attempt. Never mind that she was eighteen years old, nervous as hell and supposed to screw up.

Shit!

Pauline Ross said yes. In a necessary, vague, roundabout way, of course. Didn’t take much. Some chatter about her tie, and the woman opened up—illustrating the validity of Victoria’s research. People were lonely. Often, they didn’t want to go home. Victoria sure didn’t. What waited for her: an upside-down dorm room and probably Markie in bed with her greasy Caleb.

Pauline exited the lobby of the Best Western Harrisonburg Inn, and Victoria scrambled to meet her.

“We’re on the second floor,” Pauline said. Minty freshness flew from her smile and nearly knocked Victoria over. Pauline must’ve sneaked into a lobby bathroom and doused her mouth with breath spray. Victoria had chewed cinnamon gum. Less obvious than breath spray.

In silence, they climbed the steps, and Pauline poked her key in the electronic lock.
Red light.

She frowned and jabbed her key in again. Red light part two.

“Try mine,” Victoria offered.

Green light. Click. Success.

"Hit and Run," short story first published by Ylva Publishing and republished by me in 2014

I feel sorry for my hero. Or heroine. I wish he or she would reach out to me. Somehow. I’d say, “Don’t beat yourself up. Zachary had it coming. As a matter of fact, I’m extremely grateful. How about dinner? My treat.”

I prefer a heroine over a hero. Of course I do. More fitting that way—a woman taking down the mean, abusive son of a bitch who was my husband. On the other hand, women are more prone to guilt. Yeah, I deal in stereotypes. Sue me. A man, a certain kind of man, I can see moving on from mowing Zachary down. A woman could not, not deep down in her core. She’d fret and fret and never forgive herself. Guilt and anxiety would drive her to an early death. The fear of being caught would accompany her every action.

In any case, I don’t need to know much about my hero or heroine. I just want a quick meeting, a handshake, exchanged smiles. I would whisper comfort: It’s all right, it’s all right, don’t feel bad, he was horrible, just horrible, you did the world a favor.  

"The Girl Prince and Her Princess," novella published in  2012

Once upon a time, a king and queen with hair of spun gold and eyes of the clear blue sky ruled the land of Athena. They governed with benevolence and good grace. Their subjects loved them. However, as they neared the end of their childbearing years, they had yet to produce a child. They tried and tried, several times a day in fact, with nothing to show for it.

The kingdom desperately needed a prince, and stress made itself evident. King Attus’s once-thick mane of blond hair receded at an alarming rate, and a new wrinkle appeared on his handsome face every day. Sadness settled in Queen Elizaveta’s eyes, and she took to sitting at windows and sighing wistfully. She stared at nothing in particular.

"Loving Katharine," a novel published in 2018

Lucas and Jo could not agree on how to send the message. Lucas, the elder sibling at eleven years old and well-versed in email, wanted to send it electronically. Jo, at nine and a stalwart lover of all things physical, insisted that postal mail would make a bigger impact.

 “No way you could wait that long for a reply,” Lucas said with a scoff. “Look.” Using his tablet, he stabbed the general area where they lived in Chicago and trailed his finger a good few inches across to the United Kingdom. “It’ll be a month if we’re lucky!”

Jo rolled her eyes. “I know where Britain is, thank you very much. Email would be too impersonal, and you know it.”

Lucas sighed, and the whoosh of air flipped up his long bangs. “Let’s type, then we can decide if we want to write the words. None of this matters if we don’t get anything down.”
 

Jo grinned and sat on Lucas’s bed. “Give me your tablet.”

He obliged, and she began to type, her brows furrowed in concentration. “Hello, Your Majesty,” she voiced.

“Dear,” Lucas said. “Dear Your Majesty.”

Jo made the correction and murmured as she typed, “My name is Jo, and I’m nine. My brother Lucas is eleven, and you used to know our mother. Dated her. Loved her. We’re hoping you still love her because she…” Jo bit her lip.

“Gimme.” Lucas grabbed the tablet and pecked at the keyboard. “Mom’s a great person. Incredible, and she would never say it, but she’s kind of stuck in her life. She’s lonely too. She’d love to hear from you.”

"The Psychic and the Damsel in Distress," a short story published in 2014

The first psychic seemed promising. Telah liked her very much. Miss Theo was quiet, serious, unsmiling. Dedicated. She knew what she was doing. But a car hit and killed her. Telah wondered if Miss Theo saw it coming.

Telah hated the next psychic. Merry had been loud and disrespectful after the first few sessions. She said Claire was dead, but Telah knew Claire wasn’t dead. She felt it in her bones, in her gut, in every fiber of her being. Claire was alive and needed her mother. Telah didn’t waste much time with Merry.

Number three had been better. The fact he was a man didn’t put Telah off. She’d never heard of a male psychic, but so what? All that mattered was finding her daughter.

The man called himself Robert Joe, and he was like Miss Theo: quiet, expressionless, driven. Telah’s cause became his, and finding Claire obsessed his life much like it did Telah’s. Then came the day when, his face gaunt, his eyes black and unreadable, he stared Telah down from across the table. “I’m sorry,” he said. “I can’t do this anymore. I sense that Claire is dead.”


** For my lesfic fans, this is a head's up that the "The Psychic and the Damsel in Distress" is general fiction, not lesfic. Anyone should enjoy it! :) As the Amazon reviews say...

"This is the type of writing Kelly is known for, something really good and thought-provoking and ultimately just plain WEIRD -- just what I love!"

"I really liked this story. As a matter of fact, I like all of the author's stories. She has a great imagination and a fearless writing style."

"This little story was a quick read. Despite being short it was filled with drama. Start to finish Q. Kelly wrote a good story with a little suspense, a little drama and a good ending. Something to fill the time between ending a longer novel and the beginning of another. Don't miss an opportunity for a delightful story."

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Not bad, eh? :) So, that's five potential works to help you get started--two novels, a novella and two short stories. The shorts are about 8,000 words each.

Also! Since I picked these works randomly, the two novels happen to be part of a series. They stand well alone, though, so jump right into them if that doesn't bother you. You can check out the other books in the series later if you're so inclined.

If you like to start series from the beginning, the first book with Victoria is "Strange Bedfellows," and for "Loving Katharine," start with "Knowing Katharine."



 

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